Listen up friends, the environment is dying. We need to stop driving to work and we need to learn to find alternative ways to get to around. If you want to stop reading now because you hate the environment; it involves your legs.
Convenience is ruining the planet and it's ruining our bodies. Not only are we fatter than ever, we have killed the planet on the way there. If you didn't know, I use my legs to get to work every day. I almost aways carpool with someone else to the grocery store and to my parents house. I take the bus when the sidewalks are too bad and I grow my own vegetables. I have lowered my carbon footprint and so can you. I'm going to talk about urban gardening in a few weeks, but this week, we are talking about how to commute to work.
1) If you live within a 30 minute walk to work, STOP TAKING YOUR CAR
Honestly, I never use my car, I buy gas every four-five weeks, so 10 time-ish a year. I walk to work or I bike to work and you know what, it's the best thing I have ever done in my life! Hands down if I could recommend anything health wise to anyone, it would be to walk/bike to work. If you are worried about sweat/looking disheveled, pack a change of clothes and keep a hair dryer at work, the sweat can be dried and your hair will actually look better. Your mental health will thank you, the fresh air is sublime.
2) Equip yourself for the walk/bike ride
My neighbour says this all the time "there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad equipment". I cannot drill this enough, you need good sneakers, a backpack, and a good coat. For the rain, you need a golf umbrella, splash pants, and a rain coat. If you are biking, you need a decent bike and a good bike lock. You will hate walking if you are walking in the wrong shoes and have the wrong coat.
3) Adjust you standards of living
I cannot tolerate people who complain about the rain, snow, or sleet. I handle it every day and I am exposed to the elements. Suit up and deal with it; so what if your hair get's ruined or your mascara runs. Who cares if your suit get's wet, the environment is dying. I used to be so concerned what I looked like without my extensions or full face of makeup, I still love makeup, but my priority is not to be embarrassed by my appearance, I am beautiful with or without the makeup. My priority is to care for the environment.
4) If you live further than a thirty minute walk from work and live within the city. Take the bus/carpool
Honestly, I still biked the 8km when I lived further than 30 minutes. Or my parents drove me to work. Parking is expensive and so is gas. Your car is not necessary to get to work. It's incredible how people find ways to commute, I have a colleague who's situation changed with her parking and she found a way to get to work without her car and it was incredible to see. Actually, she got rid of her second car because it just wasn't necessary to have. She's an inspiration.
5) Stop buying new cars, buy new bikes
Bikes are incredible. I bought a second hand car and didn't really think twice about what I was buying (mostly because it was my car through university and my parents were the sellers), but when it came to my beautiful Raleigh, it was important for me. I needed something reliable and I needed something that wouldn't quit. I love riding my bike, I get excited to drive her, no matter the weather. Savages was so amazing if you live in NB and need a bike, please consider Savages.
6) Live closer to your office/ grocery store
I know this one is less possible, but the reason I want to live downtown is because it is close to my office and allows me the freedom of exercising my way to work. If you have the option of moving, I would highly highly recommend moving closer to your life.
To wrap it all up, we can cut the convenience of driving cars for our legs. It's possible. It won't hurt, it will actually create more financial freedom and help our fat bodies (I went there). The environment benefit of using our legs is important. We need to take this seriously. We need to care about our commutes and we need to care about the planet and our bodies more than ever.
Thanks for reading,