Get Inspired – RRC Commuter Profiles Part 1

The Commuter Challenge is around the corner, and we thought some of you might be looking for inspiration to take the leap and try a more sustainable commute, like cycling! Well, look no further than your fellow RRC colleagues who are a wealth of experience and inspiration and happy to share it! Below are some RRC Commuter Profiles to help get you inspired.

Part 2 can be found here. If you would like to share your own sustainable commuting experience, please send us a note.

Also, don’t forget to register for the Commuter Challenge.


Photo of Cassidy Dzama

Cassidy Dzama

What is your name? Cassidy Dzama
Which campus do you work out of? Notre Dame Campus
How do you typically commute to work? Bike
How far is your commute one way? 5km
What do you like about your commute?
Exercise, scenery, fresh air, freedom.
What tips/suggestions do you have for someone thinking about changing to a more sustainable commute?
It’s not just commuting to work like you would in a vehicle. You have to pack a bag with work clothes and a tool kit (spare tube, patch kit etc.). Wear slightly less clothing than you would if you were walking outside as you build up heat pretty fast. Start with a few commutes a week, and build up from it. Scout new ways to get to work and plan it out. I use Strava (mobile app) to keep track of my commutes. Find out which routes are faster. Buy some good road tires if you feel biking is something for you. Bike lights are a must for spring and fall as it gets hard to be seen during those times. Don’t let the poor conditions stop you is probably the most important tip. You rarely get the tail wind that pushes you to your destination, always plan to bike against it!


Photo of Lisa Case

Lisa Case

What is your name? Lisa Case
Which campus do you work out of? Exchange District Campus
How do you typically commute to work? I cycle to work. I have a city commuter bike (with fenders) for spring/summer/fall and a fatbike for commuting in the winter. On days when it is not feasible to cycle, I walk.
How far is your commute one way? 2.5km
What do you like about your commute?
Most of it is on a bike route and dedicated walking/cycling path and I get to cycle through the Forks on my way to work. I love riding along the river in the morning and just enjoy nature. I will go out of my way to stay on bike paths because it’s more quiet

Photo of Lisa Case cycling across a bridge in the winter

Lisa Case cycling in winter

and safe out of traffic. In winter I love being able to cycle to work along the Red River Mutual Trail on the river.
What tips/suggestions do you have for someone thinking about changing to a more sustainable commute? I would tell people to start slow. If you don’t have a bike, borrow or rent one to see if you’ll like it. Give yourself more time than you think you’ll need the first few times so you’ll enjoy the experience and not feel rushed and stressed when you get to work. You don’t need expensive gear/clothes to ride to work, just a good waterproof backpack (or pick up an inexpensive back pack rain cover from your local bike shop or MEC) in which you can pack your work clothes if you like. Many people I see just wear their regular work clothes while cycling. Because I was cycling to work year round we actually sold our second car as it was rarely being driven. My husband and I have never looked back. We do have to coordinate on days where I have an appointment that is just not convenient to cycle to, but my husband also cycle commutes three days a week so we make it work. If you really want to make it work you will find a way.

 


Photo of Matt Ferber

Matt Ferber

What is your name? Matthew Ferber
Which campus do you work out of? Notre Dame Campus
How do you typically commute to work? Bike year round. Occasionally drive
How far is your commute one way? 6km
What do you like about your commute?
Cycling keeps me active and surprisingly takes the exact same amount of time to get to work while me saving money. Cycling keeps me gloriously warm in the winter; no sitting still in a cold car or waiting for a bus that’s painfully late.
What tips/suggestions do you have for someone thinking about changing to a more sustainable commute?
Wear a helmet if you cycle. Period. You probably don’t wear a seatbelt because you’re worried about your own skill as a driver.

I accidently got in shape by being too poor to afford a car and getting on a bike. Getting this incidental exercise also greatly helps me with my mood.

Cyclists are allowed on the road. Treat vehicles with respect while commanding your portion of the road and you’ll be treated with respect in turn.

I find vehicles are passing more closely than the 1 meter they’re supposed to I’m probably biking too close to the curb. Own your portion of the road while being respectful.


Photo of Patrick Griffith

Patrick Griffith

What is your name? Patrick Griffith
Which campus do you work out of? Notre Dame
How do you typically commute to work?
By bike as soon as the weather allows!
How far is your commute one way? 14 KM
What do you like about your commute?
Access to quiet streets and bike paths most of the way to the College. It’s a great way to de-stress after a busy day.
What tips/suggestions do you have for someone thinking about changing to a more sustainable commute?​ Find someone who regularly commutes and get some tips. Things like good routes, what to wear, how to manage baggage. Besides that, it’s always good to know how to fix a flat (it’s not hard…)