I don’t travel much on business these days, but I had to hit the road this week. We had a series of meetings at company headquarters in Indianapolis. It was to be a fast and busy trip. In on Thursday morning and out on Friday afternoon. We had a team building event Thursday evening until 9:00 PM. I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to cycle. This is kind of a big deal to me since one of my goals for the year is to cycle five miles or more every day. I don’t think I’m obsessive-compulsive about it, but we’re 194 days in and I haven’t missed yet so I wanted to keep the streak alive.
They say that where there’s a will, there’s a way and I believe that. I was able to get five-plus miles in each day while fulfilling the obligations to my company and co-workers. Here’s how I did it.
First, I did a little pre-trip research before I left our home in Iowa. I knew that Indy has B-cycle bike share and so I identified the closest station to my hotel. It was right across the street. I also reviewed the hours and discovered that I could rent a bike until midnight. That meant I could ride late if I had to and I did.
I also downloaded the Zagster app to my phone. Zagster is a private sector bike share company that works with hotels, universities and even individual companies. I didn’t realize that they had a presence in Indy but they do. The app automatically locks in on the closest bikes. I also discovered that Zagster has bikes in Peoria Illinois and they’re available 7/24. In a worst case, I could stop in Peoria and get my miles in on the way back home.
While doing my recon, I also discovered Spinlister. This is a national service that allows you to rent a bike from a private party. You can even specify the kind of bike (mountain, road, fat, cruiser, fixxie, etc.) you’d like to rent and the number of days you need it for. Spinlister might not be practical for a quick trip, but if you’re going to be in a place for 3 or more days and have the flexibility to store the bike, it is a great option. I’ll use Spinlister if we fly to Arizona to visit my folks later this year.
Last, but not least, local bike shops are often an option if you need a bike for a day or two. Be sure to check and see if your destination city has a bike cooperative. Even if they can’t rent you a bike, they can often tell you where you can find the best deal.
Bottom line, you don’t have to stop riding when you hit the road for business or pleasure. All it requires is a little planning. The payoff is that you’ll often discover things about your destination that you never would in a car. Best of all, you get to keep on rolling.