Active Commuting Update: Summer Struggles

The sweat is real. Even when the morning temps are in the 60s, I get a little sweaty biking in to work. I tend to ride in wearing what I’m going to wear for work, though, unless it’s really gross or I have a big meeting. So headbands, dry shampoo, wicking socks, and sometimes a clean shirt are helpful. I’m a big fan of lululemon bras and undies. For the ride home, it’s often in the 80’s or even 90’s. I throw a pair of shorts and a cycling jersey in my bag for the afternoon. Why a cycling jersey? It’s not because I want to look like a spandex warrior. The lightweight fabric, the deep front zip, the coverage in the back, and the pocket I can reach while riding all make this a winner. 

The long days of summer mean it’s fully light for both AM and PM commutes, even if I’m going in early or staying late. Now, with September on the horizon, it’s already starting to darken at the edges, but there’s still plenty of light for the commuting hours.

Running! I finally did it, in the weeks leading up to Hood to Coast when I wanted a little more mileage and practice running later in the day. Here are my thoughts. . . first, home from work only, please. Sure, I can work up a sweat on my bike, but running is on another level. So I can take the light rail or the bus in, and plan to run home. This is a good option on a day that I can pack light (leave the laptop & books behind) and when the afternoon temperature isn’t higher than the low 80s. I bring my lightweight pack (REI Flash18), throw in a pair of shoes and a set of running clothes, bring a hydration bladder (I’ll be out over an hour in the heat), and I’m good to go. The few days I’ve done this, I’ve been glad I did. I feel good getting home, even if the run itself (uphill in the heat) is a bit of a bear. It’s good to know, also, that I can always run the first few and then hop on a train if I’m not feeling it. 

Sometimes, if I can, I head out a little early and finish work from home to avoid riding in the hottest part of the day. And sometimes, I give up and drive. When I’m tired and maybe I did a run already and it’s 95 degrees outside, biking or running home might just not be the smartest thing. It’s OK.

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