- Monday…a day to start commuting!
I am determined to do Bolton to Manchester on a daily basis. 14 miles each way. Downhill in, uphill home. Bike is going to be the Croix de Fer. Mudguarded up, and currently with Specialized Armadillo 25c tyres. Unsure whether to put Marathon Plus tyres on. Thoughts?
Any tips to make a start? My mentality at the minute is, it’s raining, I’m driving. Sit in traffic an hour and hate it.Posted 4 years ago
Dont put it off till monday!
Do it a couple of times this week to ease yourself into it.
Get your kit ready the night before and put it on as soon as you get up.
The tyres will be fine.
Edit: I stopped earlier this year due to some odd hours I’ve been working but I really missed it. It’s only 5 and a bit miles and is almost too much mither for the benefit I get from it so I’ve just started running one way and cycling the other (fortunately we have secure bike storage). Can’t wait for an icy 5.30 run tomorrow! 🙂Posted 4 years agoDaffySubscriber
I do 13 miles each way per day.
It takes 30-40 minutes depending upon the weather. It took me 1:55mins to get home yesterday in the car. NEVER AGAIN.
Are you on roads or cycle paths?
Wear a Buff under your helmet.
ALWAYS look twice at junctions.
Guards are a must, good lights are a must.
I prefer bigger comfier tyres for my commute (currently 37s) as I find they have more traction and give me more speed.Posted 4 years agogarage-dwellerSubscriber
Sounds like you’ve got the gear sorted. Thought about panniers/ traditional saddle bag. Much nicer than weight on your back for the road imo.
Got something bright to wear? Not necessarily flouro or hi vis but non black/grey? If you are doing those kinds of distances a little help for the wombats behind the wheel doesn’t hurt. I know there are policy views against creating expectations of hi vis clad cyclists but a little splash of color does help ime.
I sometimes do about 17 miles undulating commute on the bike. Faster than the car at this time of year unless I have a large laptopand lever arch files to lug around.Posted 4 years agoTiRedMember
Just start. Marathon Plus in a nice narrow 25/28 or Durano Plus in 25 for something faster. A rack and panniers for that distance. On average over the course of a year, you can expect to be properly rained on about 15 times a year. It’s just a state of mind.
And sell the car 😉Posted 4 years agoMoreCashThanDashSubscriber
Break yourself in gently so you don’t overdo it and put yourself off, it may come as shock to the system. Lots of lights this time of year. Explore every option to keep off the main roads – it may take longer, but you will enjoy the journey more.
A mate used to commute Didsbury-Chorley once a week as his Friday treat. Be careful on roundabouts in Manchester – he would end up in A&E roughly every 10 months, but on the plus side, he got a new bike paid for by the drivers’ insurers every 18 months or so. (To be fair, his worst cycling injury was caused by a badger, but he bounces quite well whatever the circumstance…)Posted 4 years ago
That route you’re referring to is the linear walkway. Its well surfaced as far as worsley woods and there’s about 200 yds at most where it can get a touch muddy. That was my commute in the opposite direction all last year. Much better than the A6 even in the darkest depths of winter. I did it on a cdf too.Posted 4 years agosimmySubscriber
+ 1 for using route 55
Like has been said, it’s mainly solid all the way to Winton, then follow the road by the canal to Trafford park
I’ve done route 55 loads and it should be fine with mudguards through the odd puddle. Only thing was a few weeks ago United Utilities were doing some work which had narrowed the wide former double railway down to a gap the size of singletrack, fine for riding but a bit of a squeeze if meeting up with another cyclist.
I’d still rather put up with that than the A6
Perhaps have a reccy at the weekend ?Posted 4 years agosimmySubscriber
Depends how far you go towards little hulton 😉
I’ve never had a problem with anyone and I normally get on at parsonage road / tynebank and head towards manchester, but yeah it would be the main thing I’d worry about.
Sometimes get teenagers hanging around at the Winton end but they just keep themselves to themselves.Posted 4 years ago
Get on at mount skip lane. That’s where I got on. If you’re travelling during normal sort of commuting hours you’ll be fine. I never had a problem and I’d often travel home after 11pm (properly pitch black going under the motorway though) 😯
Might be worth a recce at the weekend* as simmy says, I ran up that way on Saturday and there is some sort of hoarding up about a mile from the Winton end. As I was blowing out of my arse to keep up with other runners though I didn’t take a closer look.
*not Saturday at 9 am though as you’ll meet 200 runners coming the other way! 😆Posted 4 years agoBuzzlightyearMember
Definitely consider a rack and panniers, I commute 22miles each way 3 times a week and getting the weight of my back made a massive difference. Sitting down and relaxing is much nicer without a back pack on.
Get the right gear, do not think this is going to save you money, I spend a lot on food and clothing.
At 28miles a day I think your have to build up to that, 5 days a week will leave you feeling weak on Friday and your struggle to get out on the mtb, I try not to ride Friday so that I’m fresh for the weekend.
Oh and join the winter commuter challenge:Posted 4 years agotonydMember
17 miles each way here, generally 3 times a week. I eat when I get to work, lunch tends to increase in size as the week goes on and I get hungrier. Sometimes I have a mid afternoon snack, otherwise just ride home and eat when I get there.
I agree that you should break yourself into it, and that you’ll eat a lot! If dinner isn’t ready when I get back I tend to stand at the fridge for 10 minutes if I haven’t ridden for a while.
Mudguards, lots of lights, lots of reflecty things, good warm kit.Posted 4 years agoMoreCashThanDashSubscriber
Forgot to say, that distance, think about a rack and pannier, I find it much comfier. Carry a waterproof jacket, spare batteries or back up lights, 2 tubes and tyre levers pump etc. Make sure the person you will need to come and rescue you in the event of a disaster knows your route.
I have a banana and coffee before my commute (12 miles each way, 3 times a week usually) and breakfast at my desk. I eat a lot anyway, but I find something carby an hour or so before heading home helps. I also carry an energy gel for emergencies – sometimes at the end of the week I have resorted to using one. Or stopping at the ice cream van at Bramcote Hills Park….
I’m never sure about carrying a drink – usually only in the summer when it is proper warm, but there are times when hydration has been over done and hedges are required.
And definitely recce the route at the weekend, you don’t want to be figuring it out in the rain and dark at 7am next Monday morning.
Good luck, let us know how it goes.Posted 4 years agomuppetWranglerMember
I used to do 15 miles each way, would take anything between 50 – 75 minutes depending on the weather and traffic. It was a route in and out of London so pretty flat but lots of traffic, junctions and lights that slowed the whole thing down a little.
i used to just have a light breakfast before setting off, bowl of cereal or a couple of bits of toast and jam, that sort of thing and then have elevenses at work to make up for the energy lost on the ride in.
Always carried and drank one water bottle each way.
When I first started I built up slowly, gauging it on how I felt. started with a Mon and Thu, then Mon, Wed, Fri, then Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri until I was comfortable doing the whole week. probably took about 8 weeks until it riding in every day felt normal.Posted 4 years agotomlevellMember
Just over the hour each way for me. Once or twice a week depending on other stuff. (I ride home then in)
Eat when I get to work and if it’s the 2nd one in a row I’m chewing at the bars by the time I get there.
Eat loads during the day then ride home and eat anything I can find before tea a bit later.
Generally as above.
If your going to do everyday you need ride steady not fast as you’ll be wrecked by Wednesday unless you do big miles already.
It is far far better than driving.
Option 2 – Make wife walk the mile to work…Posted 4 years agokcrMember
Marathon 28s are plenty tough enough for bomb proof commuting. Marathon Winters with the studs if your route gets ice regularly over the winter and you want to keep cycling, but they are slow. I have a set on spare wheels so I can switch them for icy weather.
Rack and pannier(s) without question. Don’t bother thinking about it, just get them.
At least two rear lights, and a front backup that can get you home if necessary.
Make sure you have the basics to deal with typical mechanicals; spare tubes+patches, multi tool, magic links, reliable pump.
15 miles each way is a significant commute if you ride it 5 days a week, but if you get into the habit, you won’t go back to the car. Have fun.Posted 4 years agobillytinkleMember
TiRed – Member
On average over the course of a year, you can expect to be properly rained on about 15 times a year.
I read the same thing when I started commuting by bike – sounded great. Last month alone I got properly rained on more times than that!
Fortunately I am waterproof.Posted 4 years ago
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