In the throes of Bike Everywhere Month, my heart is full with the joy of cycling.

Being from a suburban town with no public transit, biking as a means of transportation never seemed like an option. It was always a short car ride to the grocery store, shopping outlet, or work which was anywhere from 5-20 miles away. That time spent sitting in the car in addition to 40 hours a week at school or work accumulated without my realization. I’ve never been a gym-goer and had made attempts at fitness with the intention to get moving, but nothing ever quite stuck.

Upon moving to Seattle in 2015 (my first time living in a full-fledged city!), I decidedly made a change – I ditched my car and went straight to Recycled Cycles (RIP Fremont location </3). They hooked me up with my trusty commuter Kona with which I’ve racked up countless miles over the years. The autonomy of going wherever I want, whenever I want (without paying for a bus, Lyft, or parking) is life changing. Logistics of saving cost, reducing emissions, and getting exercise aside – I believe cycling is good for the soul. Being someone with little history of athleticism, cycling has given me a confidence and appreciation for my body I didn’t know I had. I have finally found “my thing”.

Certainly, any physical activity comes with its set of risks – such as the knee overuse injury I had acquired over time. With a bike fit from Shana Stratford and few weeks of PT with Shawnee Perkins, I learned about the mechanics of the little things – where I place my foot on the pedal, the fact that I favor my right “strong” leg, and so forth. Positioning and alignment on the bike is key.

My advice? Listen to your body. Do what feels good. And, even though it sometimes seems like it, the Burke is not a racetrack. Ride with intention, awareness, and belief in yourself – you’ll be surprised by where two wheels can take you!

– Paige Petrangelo, Front Office Supervisor