photo: Richard Masoner
The road bike is the most efficient mode of transportation ever designed. It requires no fuel, therefor no fuel emissions, it's easy to repair and it can save you a ton of money. Let's discuss some key benefits to switching from a car to a road bike.
One of the biggest benefits to switching to a road bike is the exercise. It may be grueling the first week or two hopping on a bike every day but pretty soon it will become a routine, just as your morning commute in a car. You'll be getting regular exercise everyday without really thinking about it.
Far too many people want to exercise more but say they don't have the time. This is precisely why combining your physical training with your way of getting around is so important. There's no opting out of a workout when you need it to get where you're going. If you own a car and a road bike you'll probably use the former much more often. The reason being your mind will play tricks on you. It will come up with excuses for why you need to use your car and leave the road bike at home. For example, if you're running late for work you'll tell yourself "I have to take the car, just for today." Pretty soon you'll be running late everyday just so you don't have to hop on your road bike. Get rid of your car and you'll soon be in the best shape of your life.
You'll also notice your diet will change (for the better) by itself. It's not fun to eat greasy fatty food, drink a gallon of soda, then hop on your bike. Regular exercise on a road bike will keep your food choice in check without doing any research on diets, carb counting, sodium intake, etc. Riding a road bike will also force you to stay hydrated, a key element of becoming healthy.
Road bikes are very simple machines compared to any other form of transportation. It's usually quite simple to repair or replace a part on it. Even major damages can often be fixed with a little money and time spent watching Youtube videos and the tools required are often wrenches and grease.
It's easy to maintain your road bike and keep it running smooth. Their are a few things that eventually wear down, such as brake pads, grip tape, tire tubes, etc. but all these things are very inexpensive and a cinch to replace. In fact, if you take your road bike into your local bike shop they'll probably do the work for you, for free. That's like taking your car in to get the oil changed and only paying for the oil. Not likely.
It's amazing how much money you can save by switching your transportation from a car to a road bike. Add up all your costs for owning a car and it's just embarrassing. Monthly payments, gas, repairs and maintenance costs can be overwhelmingly high. A road bike on the other hand can be purchased used for under $100 on Craigslist, fixed up and ready to ride in no time. The internet can teach you how to do it all yourself, saving you even more money.
Many people assume that getting to where they're going on a road bike will take too much time, however, more often than not that's simply not true. When you're driving in your car you don't really notice how much time is wasted at stop lights, stuck behind a slow driver, looking for a parking spot and stuck in traffic. When you're on a road bike, all it takes is a little creativity to avoid all of this. Bikes follow the same rules as motor vehicles (as they should) but in most situations you can find alternate routes that are both faster and more fun.
Really, what it all comes down to, is it's just more fun to ride a road bike than drive a car. The more you ride, the stronger your legs get, the faster you go, the more time you save and the more fun you'll have. Make the switch and you'll find even more perks along the way.