Unfortunate puns aside, there are countless benefits to riding a bike to work. Chief among your reasons to ride are the effects it could have on your health. I mean, it’s hard to beat the low-impact, high-aerobic and high-calorie burning exercise that is offered by a bicycle. But sometimes this level of exercise isn’t exactly what we want when we commute to work. Sure, I’m all for staying active, but showing up to a meeting drenched in sweat isn’t exactly what I call “ideal.” However, don’t worry, there’s actually an active lifestyle solution that won’t leave you heaving for breath every time you arrive at the office. It’s the electric bike.

Now I know what you’re thinking: if the bike is electric and has a motor, how can I burn calories? That’s actually a common misconception about how electric bikes work. The truth is, electric bikes almost always operate in conjunction with regular pedal power. Say you’re on your bike commuting to work, for example. While you’re enjoying the fresh air, your reduced carbon footprint and a little bit of exercise, you suddenly encounter a giant hill. Up until this point you’ve powered the bike yourself, but upon seeing such a daunting mountain (and wanting to avoid a level of exercise you clearly aren’t dressed for), you activate your electric bike and it assists–emphasis on “assists”–you up the hill. You’re still burning calories, but you aren’t sweating through your work clothes.

Young man with electric bicycle or E-bike

And that’s just the first advantage to riding an electric bike to work. Another thing to consider is convenience. Especially in Utah, riding an electric bike to work has never been easier. With bike lanes rapidly spreading across major cities and roadways, riding to a nearby TRAX station is now one of the simplest ways to cut the “congestion” out of your commute.

On top of avoiding rush hour traffic, you’re also avoiding harmful emissions. In fact, in 2011 the European Cyclists’ Federation found that when comparing electric bikes to cars, the bikes emitted just 8.1% per passenger, per kilometer, of CO2 that a car spit out. That reduction in emissions can go a long way to helping keep Utah’s air quality in check.

the senior bikers are recharging their e-bikes in front of a small restaurant during their Lunch break in small dutch tourist town

Oh, and there’s one more thing you’ll cut: costs. While the initial investment for an electric bike could be anywhere from $1,000 to $4,000 dollars, the amount of money you’ll save in gas, maintenance, parking and frustration will quickly put you in the green.

As it is with any bike, however, finding one that fits you is very important. If you’re interested in switching to an electric bike, talk with a specialist to see what will work best for your situation. As electric bikes continue to expand across the globe, it will become easier to secure the perfect solution for your daily commute. And if riding a bike isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other strategies you can use to improve Utah’s air and your drive to work.

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