On the Move! Life without the Steering Wheel

One day I decided to walk to work; it seemed simple, I wasn’t going to run that day, and it was a good way to spend some time outside before and after spending eight hours inside. It also seemed like the logical way to avoid a parking ticket; those Parking Security dudes really get passionate/ridiculously meticulous about their job.

One day it’s Fall & sunny, the next it’s snowing & slightly chilly. Either way, my commute-on-foot keeps things interesting…

Fallcommute Snowcommute

Then I tried something else; I took the bike to work. Glorious! Speeding down the street with the sun shining; it was much quicker than walking (obviously) and takes about the same amount of time as driving. A gas-saving, Vitamin D-creating, muscle-moving commute style! I’m hooked.

Now, anytime I head out, I reach for the bike lock and/or my running shoes. If the keys are in my hand, it’s either raining (I do snow, not rain) or more than 10 miles away (I do have some limits).

******

One of my favorite aspects of city-living has always been Walkability. I love the ability to Walk to a coffee shop, book store, restaurant, grocery store (Whole Foods proximity here is borderline dangerous), park, job, trail, etc.

walk

 

Moving from a metro, city & trail-accessible location in DC to the suburbs of Denver was something of a culture shock for this girl. To be back in the midst of things, able to get to my job on foot instead of via I-25, explore the neighborhood to find little gems within  a few blocks, ride to a Yoga class, and/or run around a park or on a trail has me back to normal.

We moved into the city of Denver about four weeks ago; I filled up my car with gas for the first time (since the move) on Sunday. Flashback to October: I filled up the tank at least once a week, commuting to/from the suburbs. Needless to say, my bank account is thrilled and my legs are happy with the extra attention!

Are you able to commute by foot?

Once I realized how easy it was, there was no turning back! It’s that much more time I get to spend outside every day, my legs moving & my car keeping its fuel.

What’s got you on-the-move lately?

Aside from increasing my time in Yoga (and Loving it), I’ve finally gone to some group runs! Saturday was a “Dash & Dine” experience; 5 miles on the trail followed by brunch with the runners. Last night, a smaller group of us headed out in the dark (after an insane out-0f-nowhere rain storm) for some miles around the park. It was exactly what I needed; a fun group, a buddy that’s slightly faster than me, and people that still meet when it’s cold & wintery!

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20 Comments

Filed under about me, Exploring Colorado, running buddy, things I Love

20 responses to “On the Move! Life without the Steering Wheel

  1. Group running is the only way I survive winter training! Glad you have some new buddies to keep you company… bonus on brunch!

    I wish I could commute to work on foot. Sadly, it is way too far! I do try to walk/run to and from the gym and.or the meeting spot for group runs as often as I can. It feels so much better… just takes a bit more organization. 🙂

  2. lesley

    i recently moved to a new city too! what are your best tips for finding new running buddies?

    • Heather C

      I’ve used Meetup.com to find running groups – and reached out on Twitter, too! Just do Google searches with your city + Running Groups and see what you find 🙂

      Usually you can just show up, but depending on the nature of the group you may want to RSVP (usually so directors/leaders know how many to expect).

  3. Lacey

    i LOVED your yoga post yesterday. i feel the exact same way about it- it is more than just a body thing, it is really a mindful practice and usually the teachers say things that i want to remember!!!! it has so much meaning. love the idea of carrying journal/pen. and hopefully written journaling will NEVER go out of style… 🙂

    also i love being in a town where i can walk. it makes me feel so much more at home.

  4. Awesome! I’m car-free in Los Angeles coming up on 8 years and it’s wonderful. I usually bike commute or transit for longer trips. Recently I’ve been run commuting too, which seems like such a crazy idea, but it’s great for going to meet friends or to something like yoga (you’re all warmed up!).
    People think it’s impossible to do in Los Angeles, but it’s all about how you look at the city and where your priorities are.
    Though I don’t have to deal with the harsh weather you do, which makes you much tougher. Congrats.

  5. So glad the running group is a success! Billy and I share a car so there’s a lot of walking and now riding my new bike.

    We made our decision on apartment location based on the ability to walk to restaurants, bars, coffeehouses, etc. The only thing we are not close to is a Whole Foods. I think it’s a blessing and a curse all at once. 🙂

  6. it’s about 15 miles to work for me so i don’t know about walking but i would LOVE to! we still see people biking to interlocken in the SNOW sometimes!

  7. That sounds perfect! Riding or walking. My commute is almost 6 miles so I don’t think I’d ever walk although I have contemplated running to and from work occasionally in the summer. We’ll see if that ever happens. Crazy how quickly the weather can change in Denver.

  8. I love running groups. I ran in the POURING rain with a group and I remember thinking there was absolutely NO WAY I would have done that without the group. The solidarity of the group gets you to do things you wouldn’t on your own. And sometimes it just motivates you to get there because you want to catch up with the people you don’t see elsewhere. So many benefits. Thanks for the reminder – I haven’t joined a group run in a while! x

  9. Yes I can commute by foot. It’s about 20 steps from the kitchen to my computer.

    Glad you found a group!!

  10. Elizabeth

    Ah, yes, the bike commute to work. I get sad now when the weather prevents me from doing it. And I can’t remember the last time I refilled my SmarTrip.

  11. Liz

    That’s one of the things I am most nervous about if we leave DC – but glad to hear you are getting around sans-car so much. I’ve read Denver/Boulder is one of the most bike-friendly areas in the country. I’d be scared to ride in the snow though.

  12. My pals bike all the time in CO, then it turns cold and not so much, haa.

    I WISH I had more access to things like this, even to walk to the market.

  13. I’d love to commute more by foot, but where I live isn’t very conducive to it. My work is 7 miles away along a very busy road without sidewalks. I do bike it in the summer and have run it a couple of times, but it’s a bit long. We get a ton of rain from fall to spring, plus I have to drive my kids to school in the morning which is part way to my work.

    I do like to run/ride to friend’s houses for a visit when I can. Especially as the gas prices increase.

  14. Sadly no 😦 We live at the top of a GIANT hill! Biking to work is doable (and I did it once this summer) but biking home is not really. Unless I want to be a nasty sweaty mess and have an hour commute home… BUT we are looking into moving to a new, flatter location that would only be 8K from work and FLAT! A totally bike able distance 🙂

  15. I used to live in a very walkable area but when it came time to buy a house, we had to move more into the burbs. I miss it!

  16. I live in Manhattan, where owning a car is more of a headache than not owning a car! It’s so nice to be able to walk everywhere or at least get most places without too much hassle from public transportation. That being said, I took a weekend trip to DC and missed the freedom of having my car for a short road trip…buses are less fun than singing my heart out in my car!

    The most annoying part is that none of the “good” grocery stores are by my apartment…so it’s a pain to take half an hour to get to TJ’s!

  17. ive always wanted to walk places! 🙂 i’m jealous!

  18. I used to bike to work (10.5 miles each way) from Arlington to DC — it was great, four mile run trail into Mt. Vernon Trail, into the 14th street bridge. Then I moved, and though now I’m only 4 miles from work, I’m a mile from the trail dealing with steep uphills on a very busy road right by the 395 exit, with no shoulder or maintained sidewalks (tough I’ve always ride on the street, on a steep uphill I cannot keep up with traffic). It’s been a year, and though I’ve ran to and from work a few times, I have yet to take the bike out again 😦

    I miss it.

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