This week marks the 21st annual Bike Walk Bus Week in Missoula. Through Saturday, May 5th, there will be community events and incentives provided by local businesses for those not commuting by car. Over 100 businesses are contributing, all for the sake of celebrating and encouraging healthy transportation in Missoula.
Here are some reasons to consider these modes of travel. First, rising gas prices have made commuting by car expensive. Second, the pollution and congestion that driving a car causes could be curbed by choosing these alternative options. Finally, there are the health benefits gained by adding the extra aerobic exercise to our day. I have found that commuting by bike takes me 20 minutes each way whereas driving takes just over 15 minutes. In my mind, I consider this to be 40 minutes of “free” aerobic exercise each day, which exceeds the American Heart Associations guidelines for health (www.heart.org).
If you need some extra motivation to start commuting differently, then this year’s Bike, Walk, Bus Week may be a great time to start. Reward yourself with a free cinnamon roll from Great Harvest, a coffee from Butterfly Herbs, or choose from any number of other treats available to bikers, walkers, and bus goers.
Also, make sure to take advantage of dozens of group rides, walks, and informative sessions held throughout this week. For a complete detailed schedule of Bike Walk Bus Week events, sponsors, and transportation tips, visit www.bikewalkbusmissoula.org.