Are you biking during shelter-in-place? Us, not so much

Virtual high fives and hugs to all. I hope you’re faring OK during the COVID-19 pandemic. Oregon is under a Stay Home, Save Lives” order as of Monday, but I haven’t worked since the 15th. (However, my company has just started a bike-based service delivering locally-roasted coffee if you’re in the Portland area!!)

Portland is home to some of the mellowest drivers in America, but already a couple weeks ago I noticed that while there were fewer people out in their cars, those that I saw were driving faster than usual and more erratically. I’ve read on Twitter that people on bikes in other cities are experiencing this, too.

sip
Wednesday’s grocery run (no toilet paper to be found, though)

But that’s not why we haven’t gotten on our bikes. I love bicycling and it usually keeps me happy and healthy, but I get that fix through transportational cycling–getting from point A to B. With points A and B both being home, very few errands, and no kid activities to get to, there’s nowhere to go. We’re allowed to bike still, but other than getting groceries a couple days ago I haven’t been on my bike. Even though we of Team Family Ride are not getting out on bikes regularly, there are a lot of other people still commuting to essential jobs, running errands, and biking just for the sake of biking.

Before the Stay Home order we were walking to the park near our house, but now we’re staying even closer to home, spending time in our yard and playing two square on the sidewalk, but otherwise staying indoors getting our exercise from P.E. with Joe and Cosmic Kids Yoga.

Do you find yourself able to get out on your bike for recreational purposes (or essential errands) without it adding to your anxiety? Here’s a nice article on Bicycling.com: How to Ride Safely Amid Coronavirus Concerns if you’ve been pondering it. Portland parks bureau just banned driving in 10 parks to create more room for social distancing while walking and biking which is great. My kids have never biked to the top of Mt. Tabor so I’m toying with the idea of taking advantage of the quiet roads and getting them active doing that. Maybe. Staying home is taking a toll on our moods and adding a daily bike ride would probably help that, though it does increase our risk of exposure.

30 Days of Biking

Banking by bike
Banking by bike during 30 Days of Biking ten years ago

If I can get myself comfortable with the idea of spending time outside biking, I’ll be able to participate in 30 Days of Biking (“pledge to ride your bike every day in April–any distance, any destination–and share your adventures online”) starting April 1st. It feels silly to worry about a virtual bike game, but it’s long been a favorite event of mine and I credit it for turning me into an everyday bicyclist. Over the years I’ve enjoyed getting out on my bike every day of the month for 30 Days of Biking, even when it’s sometimes been just for the sake of getting out on my bike and not for an errand or work. But I’m not sure I’ve got it in me right now. This year so many events are postponing and 30 Days of Biking is no different, adding a second round in September just like they used to have the first few years of the project. So I have that to look forward to if biking beyond the bare minimum in April doesn’t pan out. However, I’m hoping having written about it will bolster me. We’ll soon see.

2 thoughts on “Are you biking during shelter-in-place? Us, not so much

  1. Hi Madi. I also mostly cycle for transportation, but my four year old son and I are still out riding everyday, sometimes twice a day. Getting outside is important and it can be done in a thoroughly safe way.

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