Commuters share their advice
The 2015 Commuter Challenge takes place May 31 to June 6. This week is a friendly competition between Canadian cities and workplaces and encourages participants to exchange their car for a bike, bus, carpool, or other active and sustainable transportation.
With the hope of getting more commuters involved, University of Manitoba staff and faculty share some of their commuting advice.
Laura Loewen, associate professor, faculty of music
Advice: “Life is so much better without daily use of the car – I can read or daydream on the bus, and love the exercise and fresh air I get on my bike. My basic stress level is much lower because of active transportation, and I find that I am more calm and able to problem-solve in a more creative way on the days I use my bike.”
Randall Kinley, office & building manager, St. Paul’s College
Advice: “Cycling is a great way to start the morning and end the work day. Any stress from the day is gone by the time you have ridden home. Buy a gym pass so you can take a shower and not offend your colleagues. Bring a change of clothes and leave it in your office or locker so that you don’t have to carry your wardrobe with you every day.”
Jack Rach, web and new media coordinator, marketing communications office
Advice: “First, try riding your bike. It’s a lot easier and safer than most people think. Second, with the number of people coming to campus there is bound to be someone in your area driving this way too. Make the most of it and enjoy some company as you get to campus.
Cameron Neufeld, manager, parking and transportation demand management, parking services
Advice: “I started running to work while training for the half marathon in 2013 and I was finding it difficult to fit the long runs into my schedule. Initially it seemed like a daunting task, but I found it really rewarding. I thought it might tire me out too much, but I actually find it has the reverse effect and it gives me an energy boost for the day.”
Anita Ens, education specialist, department of medical education
Advice: “If you’re biking and don’t feel comfortable on city streets, find someone who is experienced and confident and ask to ride behind him or her. You can watch how to navigate tricky surfaces, unpleasant motorists, or lights.”
Gary Anderson, associate professor, department of biological sciences
Advice: “Although my route is relatively short I do read on the way to work. So take a book and read. I regularly read scientific papers on the bus.”