Thursday, May 3, 2007



These were the words a cyclist shouted with right hand raised as we passed him on the trail at 6am this morning. We all chuckled at this sudden outburst, but realized after a few more pedal strokes that the guy is right. Riding our bikes is "sticking it to the oil man." Besides this jolt in an otherwise quiet morning the ride in was spectacular and refreshing.

During the month of May, Seattle's Group Health puts on a "Commute Challenge" for anybody who wants to participate. Teams from four to ten people log miles for the entire month and the team with the most miles, of course, wins. But there are several other categories a team can win, such as the most miles for a group of new commuters or the solo category for individual cyclists. I rallied a group of Raleigh riders to compete and we signed up as team B.E.E.R. - Bicycles Eliminating Ethanol at Raleigh. The idea is that Ethanol, though marketed as an alternative to fossil fuels, is a fuel nonetheless. We believe in human powered energy, pure & simple. The best way to reduced auto emissions is to get more cars off the road, not devise fancy new gasolines.

It's awesome to see 13 co-workers enthusiastically wanting to be part of the team. In fact, a few rode in today that haven't been on a bike all winter, which is totally great in my book. We also have a side competition going with Seattle-based OR (Outdoor Research). The loser has to serve up a BBQ and a keg of Manny's, so we'd better turn our cranks, because Manny's in a keg is an awesome elixir.

Bikes: Brian-Rush Hour, Matt-Podium 5, Carey-ss Professional
Coffee: What the heck? Coffee shops in Seattle don't open until 6am, that is just criminal.
Rant: Ride to work! Ride to work! Ride to work!
Commute Challenge Stats


Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

Amen sister!

I wish I lived closer to work- I live about 40 miles away. I'm just not brave enough to log 80 miles a day and it is just too hard with two kids. School stuff and all of that. BUT... if we are ever closer, I'm riding- even if I have to trailer the kids!

Ross said...

I am inspired by the photos. Maybe I can join you guys on your commute once I get back in shape. My single-speed is all dialed in, fendered, and ready for your fair city.

CS-H kemyooter said...

Ross, does this mean you are moving to Seattle?

Ross said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ross said...

Um, well....yes it does. The secret's out! Huzzah! (I thought Shena had been in touch with you guys more recently....)
Anyway, we will be arriving in about a month, and I'm looking forward to continuing a virtually car-free lifestyle up there.