Here is another of our stories on active travel. Kathryn has a busy work-life balance but tells us about the personal benefits she reaps from making cycling part of her everyday routine:
"I commute to work by bike daily, which is around 2 miles if I go directly. I also cycle up to look after my horse most days, this is either a 2 mile cycle on the road or a slightly longer mountain bike ride through Cambusbarron woods! If I am going into town, to the shops or to catch a train I’ll always take the bike or walk. What I enjoy most about active travel is that even on the days where I’m run off my feet at work or decorating the house, commuting by bike or walking to the shops guarantees me some fresh air and exercise. It gives me such a boost for the day! There are many benefits but for me the benefit to both my physical and mental health is so important. Having had periods of struggle with both, I have a great appreciation for the benefits that active travel can have.
My morning commute almost always involves visiting the farm where my horse is kept before coming into work. Making the time to do all the jobs I have to do and still get into work on time (and presentable!!) isn’t always the easiest, particularly in the winter when it’s dark and very muddy. I overcome this by being as organised as possible – I pack my bag the evening before, and plan my food for the week so I’ve always got something nice for lunch. I always make sure I’ve got a change of clothes at work so that on the rare occasions I do get soaked or covered in mud then I’m prepared! I find that as soon as you get into a routine and you know what time you need to leave the house, it becomes pretty easy! My advice to someone thinking about being more active is just try it! Even for one day a week. Set yourself small and achievable goals and don’t berate yourself for not being perfect – we’re all guilty of the best laid plans falling through! If every week or month you swap out another journey for active travel, think how much of a difference it will make in a year. Oh, and if you cycle or walk…. You don’t need to worry about parking!!"
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