09 April 2013

#everydayonabike in Iowa!

It's only appropriate that I interview S. from Simply Bike for the April #everydayonabike profile. 
I remember stumbling on S.'s blog a few years ago and was nearly instantly inspired to get back on the bike. She seamlessly transitioned from a commuter biker to a family biker (who still commutes!) and has great tips for other mamas who would like to do the same. 
I've had the privilege to meet S. and I'm looking forward to taking a few rides with her this summer when we're able to meet up again.

ss // What do you ride?

sb // I ride a 1970s Peugot mixte that I picked up on Craigslist. I made a number of upgrades to it (added a chain guard, basket, panniers, better grips and more upright handlebars as recent improvements to help with my back pain. I think the frame is the only thing actually remaining of the original Peugot bike. It's a gretle Frenkenbike - it looks like no other bike in town and it rides like butter. As of last fall, I have been hitching my Burley trailer to it for my daughter to ride along with me. Before the weather cooled, I used a front mounted bike seat (the iBert) for her ride in.

ss // How long have you been riding?

sb // I rediscovered biking as an adult about three years ago. I started out shaky and unsure of myself but before long, I was addicted. I loved the freedom, fun and exercise that riding my bike provided. Three years ago, there were only a handful of cycling blogs being written by women (most notably Dottie and Trisha's Let's Go Ride a Bike, Sarah's Girls and Bicycles and Meli's Bikes and the City). There were all a huge inspiration to me. Before stumbling across them, I didn't really think of biking something other than an activity relegated to parks and weekends. These women opened my eyes to using a bike as a daily mode of transportation.

ss // Where do you typically ride?

sb // I usually ride anywhere in town. I use my bike to get to campus (where I work), to shop for groceries, to go to the library with my daughter, or to meet friends for drinks in the evening. Once a month, I organize a community-wide ride for families and children (our own branch of Kidical Mass). It's been my first time attempt at anything akin to bicycle advocacy in my town and it's been incredibly fun.

ss // How has becoming a mother changed your riding (if at all)?

sb // It's changed my riding the way it has changed everything about my day: I now have to account for nap times, carrying extra items around with me (diaper pouch, snacks, books) and for the moods and wants of this other little person along for the ride. But we've fallen into a great rhythm together and biking together is one of my favorite things for us to do. I think my daughter would agree as she's usually pretty content to be in her bike seat or the bike trailer.

ss // Why do you ride?

sb // I ride because I always feel better after getting off my bike. Even on rainy, cold days. O don't get that feeling after stepping out of a car.

Thank you, S., for sharing a bit about biking! 
Please check out Simply Bike for great stories about biking and parenting and many other great topics!