covid19 · cycling · fitness

Riding safely in pandemic times. Also, OMG, she looks like me!

Machines for Freedom

I thought of going for an actual outdoor bike ride this weekend. The weather was lovely and things are opening up a bit. Restrictions are being relaxed, here in Ontario. There are lots of bikes out on the road.

Earlier in this, whatever it is, I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of riding recreationally at all.

An aside, I think we need more precise language. We weren’t ever in quarantine or lockdown. We’ve always been able to leave our houses for exercise.

I’m with Shannon on this,

Remember in France and Italy there were stretches when people could only leave their houses for medical reasons or to get groceries. There were also rules against cycling and against running more than a certain number of kms from your house. Even the UK enacted rules about how many hours of outdoor exercise were allowed. We’ve never done that.

But that’s an aside. Whatever the right term was for Ontario’s state of emergency, it’s true that some rules are being relaxed. Some businesses are reopening.

Maybe it’s still a lockdown just not a particularly strict one, Lockdown Light.

My weekend plan was to not ride too fast or too far and ride with a person I live with. But when Cheddar and I went out for a long Saturday morning dog hike I started to wonder about the wisdom of my plan. For the first time we had a hard time walking and maintaining social distancing. So many people! Also so many bikes. I started to wonder about passing people safely and about stopping at lights with other bikes.

When the day got busy and biking got away from us, I was sort of relieved.

Sunday, I got my Brompton out and rode to campus to pick up an HDMI cable from my office. That felt okay. But I think I’ll wait until a weekday, maybe even a cloudy weekday, to take my road bike out for a spin.

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I’ll bring a mask with me in case we do need to encounter other people.

Here are some rules for riding safely in quarantine times, from Machines for Freedom, above.

🚧 QuaranTIPS on How to Ride Safely:
😷 Cover your face with a mask or buff, especially when in populated areas
📍Opt for routes close to home and less busy streets or areas
🏠 Consider staying in on weekends when streets and trails are busiest
🎒Bring everything you need with you! No gas station snack stops until further notice
🎶 Ride alone or with people in your household. Bored of riding alone? Try out a new podcast or Machines playlist!

I got to know Machines for Freedom from their Swarm rides on Zwift.

I also love that their model, above, looks like me on a bike. A larger woman on a bike. Amazing! It’s worth going to check out their website–this is not a paid endorsement–just for the diversity of their models. If I come into any unexpected money I’m buying a pair of their bib shorts.

And for now I’m sticking with this suggestion, “Consider staying in on weekends when streets and trails are busiest.”

I’ll report back if I make it out their this work week

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