Steamboat employees take part in Colorado’s Bike Month by biking to work
Steamboat Springs — As part of the Steamboat Chamber Resort Association’s annual Steamboat Bike Commute Challenge, many local employees are rolling into work on two wheels instead of four this month.
The challenge runs throughout June, which is Colorado’s designated Bike Month each year.
Biking to work, when the weather permits, provides obvious health benefits and is enjoyable, according to Tyler Goodman, executive director of Bike Town USA.
“It’s good for you, and I think the health benefits are definitely up there,” Goodman said. “In addition, it’s also a fun and a great way to enjoy our fresh mountain air up here.”
According to the Livestrong Foundation’s Livestrong.com, a 20-minute bike ride to work can tone muscles in the legs, thighs and calves, as well as provide cardiovascular benefits and burn calories.
The Colorado Department of Transportation encourages bike commuting and provides information about overcoming excuses to bike to work or during daily errands.
While some commuters may think they are too out of shape or don’t have enough time to commute by bike, CDOT — knowing the average commuter travels 10 miles per hour — encourages riders to begin with an easy pace.
Bike commuting can actually be faster than driving on trips of less than three miles, and with regular biking, fitness levels will improve, according to CDOT tips.
Commuters interested in signing up for the Bike Commute Challenge can visit http://www.steamboat-chamber.com to access a Google document with a list of teams, commute lengths and number of trips taken by each participant.
Teams of four employees or family members can sign up to participate, as can individuals commuting by bike.
Although their commutes are only a couple of miles each day, Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. employees Sarah Collins and Angie Robinson said their bike rides to the office last week were worth the effort.
“I definitely enjoy riding my bike to work,” said Collins, who is participating in the Bike Commute Challenge for the first time this year. “It’s a relaxing way to start out my day, and it’s a beautiful way to watch the seasons change. It seems silly not to ride my bike.”
Robinson, who’s participated before, said the challenge is a great way to save money and has clear fitness benefits.
The two work in group sales at the ski area and are participating on one of two teams from the resort, logging their bike trips each day.
While results of the last two challenges weren’t immediately available, 204 participants biked to work in 2012, logging a total of 16,755 miles as part of the challenge.
Though the majority of the country participates in Bike to Work Day in May, the state legislature declared June as Colorado’s biking month because of the state’s mountain communities and temperamental weather.
Bikers who participate in the challenge or otherwise commute by bike can once again take part in a celebratory breakfast for Bike to Work Month on June 24, Colorado’s Bike to Work Day.
Details of the event will be released soon, Goodman said.
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