Most of us spend at least 30 minutes on the road to work. What can you do to pass the time? Here are ten suggestions:
- Make a grocery list
- Learn a new language
- Candy Crush
- Car yoga
Those are just ten ideas. But you know what doesn’t have to be on the list? Driving.
Sharing the ride takes your hands off the wheel and frees up your time for anything else you’d like to do. You could spend those 30 minutes staring at brake lights ahead, or you could turn it into free time instead. Ready to get a ride buddy and get your life back? Find one here.
In case you haven’t noticed, the Atlanta Bike Challenge has begun — and it will be going on from September 27 through October 25. This challenge is designed to encourage everyone in metro Atlanta to get out and ride their bikes. You never know how doing something small, like participating in a bike challenge, could open up other doors for you! You could find a new hobby, new friends and a new-stress free way to commute to work. (And while we’re on the subject, using a bike to commute to work could earn you cash and prizes from Georgia Commute Options.)
But once you’ve signed up for the Challenge, where do you ride? Where can you find other friendly cyclists? Below, I’ve put together a list of websites that can connect you to rides going on around metro Atlanta. You might be like myself: you love to ride but have no idea where to ride or not have many friends to ride with. So, lucky for you, I did some digging and found these rides that range from experience levels, areas of metro Atlanta, types of cycling and days of the week.
I really hope these websites can help you as much as they’ve helped me!
Victoria is the Junior Communications Specialist for the Georgia Commute Options team - helping out with writing, editing, and maintaining all our important deadline schedules. She's a big fan of carpooling and Reese's. Want to get in touch with Victoria? Click here.
The Atlanta Bike Challenge (September 27 to October 25) is the perfect opportunity to update your smartphone with the latest tools to improve your ride, track your progress, and help advance Metro Atlanta infrastructure for bicyclists. Whether you’re a new cyclist or an avid rider, there’s something out there for you.
- Love to Ride: The official app of the Atlanta Bike Challenge! Use this tool to record your ride quickly and easily using either GPS tracking or a manual entry. Remember, each time you log a ride, you are eligible to win prizes like movie tickets, restaurant gift cards, and bike bags.
- Bike Doctor: From replacing a cable to fixing a flat tire, this app will cover it. Even a complete beginner will be able to master the bike tune-up by following the instructions and photos. There are even additional guides to show you how to prevent the most common maintenance errors.
Now that you’ve got the tools, enter the challenge! Learn more about cycling and sign up for the fourth-annual Atlanta Bike Challenge at ATLBikeChallenge.com. Sign up, recruit teammates at your workplace, win awesome prizes, and compete for the ultimate Atlanta cyclist bragging rights!
Emily Estes is the bicycling subject matter expert for Georgia Commute Options. Emily enjoys hot sauce, yoga, and discovering new parts of Atlanta. On any given weekend, you can find her at the Freedom Farmers' Market, walking or biking the Atlanta BeltLine, or enjoying a popsicle on her porch. Emily utilizes commute alternatives in all forms of her life, from carpooling to work to carpooling to her weekly bocce matches.
Think cycling’s not catching on in Atlanta? Think again! From 2000 to 2012, Metro Atlanta saw a 166% increase in bicycle commutes.
But being a bike commuter doesn’t always mean biking exclusively. Many pedal-powered commuters combine biking with transit or carpooling to make up a multi-modal power commute. If riding your bike all the way into work seems like too much of a haul, have no fear — supplementing your bike commute with carpooling or using MARTA, CCT, Xpress, or Gwinnett County Transit can help you get the most out of Metro Atlanta’s roads — and get you where you’re going safely and efficiently. And biking at least the first or last couple of miles to work is something just about everyone can do. By combining your commute, you can cut down car expenses, reduce air pollution and congestion, and have a healthier trip.
If you take your bike on transit, keep these safety tips in mind:
- Avoid boarding MARTA trains that are full with your bike in hand. The very front and very back of the train are good places to look for an uncrowded car.
- On CCT, Xpress, MARTA and Gwinnett County Transit, buses are outfitted with bike racks up front that are easy to access (bike are not allowed inside buses).
- Each bus can only handle two bicycles at one time — first come, first served.
- Watch this video to see how to load your bike on a bus— it’s easy!
And if you’re combining cycling and carpooling, remember these helpful pointers:
- If you’re meeting up with your carpool partner, invest in a foldable bike rack they can keep in their car.
- Georgia Commute Options can assist with finding the perfect carpool partner for your lifestyle — fellow cyclist or otherwise.
- Check your route and the weather ahead of time. It can save time and is courteous to your carpool partner who might be waiting.
If you’re looking for a great motivator to get you started, the Atlanta Bike Challenge is the perfect opportunity! Ride your bike to the store, around the neighborhood, or on your lunch break to build up to riding to work. Sign up and learn more at ATLBikeChallenge.com!
Lee has been working on Georgia Commute Options programs for three years and manages the outreach team. She has an almost-one-year-old so she can relate to the issues metro Atlantans run into with clean commuting and child care. Originally from Mississippi, Lee brings southern and sassy charm to our team. To connect with Lee, email her at LeeW@GaCommuteOptions.com.