Many of us have difficulty finding time to get the exercise that we need, especially when we are caring for younger children who requires so much of our attention. But exercise is so important – not just for our physical health and for getting in shape, but also for our mental health. It can reduce our stress levels and help with illnesses such as depression.
So here is my first tip on how you can incorporate physical activity into your life: instead of taking a car, consider walking, cycling, or using transit to get to work and do errands. What’s more, now is the best time to start cycling, as here in BC, next week is Bike to Work Week and Bike to School Week, and June 5-11 is the BC Commuter Challenge. There are lots of prizes being given away during both weeks, including a bike trip for 2 to Amsterdam on KLM! There will also be cycling celebration stations located throughout Metro Vancouver. Visit these links to join as an individual or as part of a workplace team: www.bikehub.ca (Metro Vancouver), www.biketowork.ca (elsewhere BC) and www.commuterchallengebc.ca. And remember, even if you aren’t working, you can still participate and log your trips!
Live too far from work to bike all the way? Do what I do, and do the BIKE-TRANSIT combo! The photo in this post shows me taking my bike on the SeaBus on my way to work (for those who don’t know, I also work in the North Shore as a transportation planner). All standard buses in Metro Vancouver have bike racks and you can take your bike on the Canada Line and SeaBus any time of the day. Bikes are also allowed on the Millennium and VCC-Clark SkyTrain lines except during the rush hour times and directions. Find out more information on TransLink’s website.
If you aren’t sure about how to get your bike on a bus, check out the video on this webpage. If you live in the North Shore, you can even practice putting your bike on a bus bike rack in Civic Plaza in front of City Hall.
And if you need a secure place to lock up your bike, you can register to use the bike parkades at Main Street and King George SkyTrain Stations, or reserve one of the many bike lockers at these locations:
- 22nd Street Station Lake City Way Station
- Production Way-University Station
- Rupert Station
- Braid Station
- Sperling-Burnaby Lake Station
- VCC Station
- Bus Exchanges (Ladner, Langley Center, Phibbs, Scottsdale, and South Surrey)
Finally, you may be wondering where cycling facilities are located in your neighbourhood. You will find detailed cycling maps for Metro Vancouver here.
Happy riding and hope to see you on two wheels!