PHILADELPHIA—My commute: therapeutic, thought provoking, calming, and centering. Is such a commute possible? You bet! I am one of the estimated 10,000 Philadelphia residents who bikes to work each day—weather permitting. My time in the saddle provides me with the fresh air that I need to feel energized for the day. Biking was not always such a huge part of my life, but I have come to depend upon it as a vehicle to maintain my health and to connect with my community.
To the casual rider, city streets may seem intimidating, but thanks to membership-fueled bicycle advocacy groups, biking is gaining in popularity as a healthy way to get around everyday. The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia works to “Make bicycling better through advocacy and education by promoting biking as a healthy, low-cost, and environmentally-friendly form of transportation and recreation.” Groups such as this one encourage people to bike regularly and participate in non-competitive events such as Bike Freedom Valley, a ride along the Schuylkill River Trail, coming up on June 20, 2010. (Learn more about this ride and take $5 off of the registration fee through our EVENTS page.)
Recently, I had a number of conversations with fellow FruitGuys and friends about the important role that exercise and a healthy diet, including plenty of fruits and veggies, plays in making us feel more energized, productive, and balanced. Amanda, one of The FruitGuys esteemed customer service representatives and master multi-tasker, prefers to get her exercise through walking, preferably in a city where she says “you see a lot of things you might otherwise miss, and when you are done exercising you’ve reached your destination.”
Walking, like many other forms of exercise, such as running, biking, or yoga, can be done independently or as a fun way to get to know your region or even fundraise for an organization you support. For example, every April you can participate in events like the Stroehmann Bakeries Walk Against Hunger & 5K Run which supports those in need through Philabundance, a non-profit that provides food and resources throughout the Delaware Valley.
With summer approaching, there are countless events across the country that you can participate in—train for a competitive race or opt for a non-competitive event and reap the rewards of taking good care of yourself and your community. Check our events page regularly to find one near you. Happy riding, running, or walking to you!
- Bridget Meigs