Riding your bike to work or school—it can sound so idyllic, in theory. The sunshine! The fresh air! The exercise! The developed leg muscles! Chocolate without guilt!

But sometimes another vision tempers our desire pull out the ol’ ten-speed. The traffic! The sweat! The mandatory hill climbs to get those muscles!

Don’t worry—there is still hope. 

Despite the rainy start to Bike to Work Week this last week of May, 22 CapU2015 team riders braved the Lillooet hill to overcome these barriers and prove that biking to work is an attainable ambition.

The riders’ push up the hill was rewarded by a stop at the community station in the Purcell Bus Loop where they grabbed breakfast, refilled water bottles, picked up rider goodie bags and received a free tune-up from Jeff Bryson of The Bikeroom.

Check out how the CapU2015 team did:

  • 22 riders
  • 78 trips logged
  • 674.34 km total biked (the equivalent of cycling from Vancouver to Osoyoos!)
  • 20,230 calories burned (the equivalent of 289 Timbits!)
  • 146 kg of green house gases saved

To further celebrate the week and encourage members of the Cap U community to get on their bikes, John Tolkamp (President of Cycling Canada) was on campus offering his expert advice.  

John led a discussion about those reasons why so many of us don’t cycle to work, including safety concerns, the unpredictable Vancouver weather, a potential lack of workplace facilities, and the time-saving benefits of cars. John offered advice on how to overcome these barriers—including the helpful tip of wearing paddle gloves to protect your hands from the rain and cold wind.  

While Vancouver has some reputation as a bike-friendly city, John cited his time in Europe where cycling is such a way of life that the roads are quieter than the cycle lanes. This is the type of culture that he would love to see in Vancouver—although he advises against cycling coffee in one hand and cell phone in the other, like some Copenhageners! 

To round off Bike to Work Week at Cap U, the Wellness Committee drew raffle winners, the grand prize being a coffee-filled hamper from Cowboy Coffee. Because caffeine helps everyone feel inspired to get on their bike, right?

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Submitted by Eilidh Sligo, Wellness Committee