Cultural Shift Thinking Outside the Car

BikeBrampton member Lorie Miller blogged her personal account encouraging active transportation for her fellow workers’ short trips.

Lorie’s post: “Greenfield Live”

“For those of you who don’t already know, I’m a Brampton cycling advocate. I work with the community to promote safe cycling habits and routes, as well as encouraging individuals to “rethink the car” for short trips, in order to promote Active Transportation.

Friends of the Environment also know the benefits of reducing our footprint by supporting Active Transportation within walkable and bikeable communities.

At this moment in life I live 8km from the office, and have chosen to cycle every day, year round from home to work and return. I really do enjoy the workout I’ve already received just from my “active commute” and I enjoy inspiring others to do the same in their own communities.

Not all of us are fortunate to live/work as close as I do right now, in fact in September, I’ll be moving 35km away from the office, and will have to begin driving again, as I’ll no longer be living in Brampton.

So, now I will be challenging myself to also “rethink the car”. Often I was asked, if I can’t bike to/from work, what else could I do?

A good example I can think of is sweet potatoes…  It’s a Sunday morning, you’ve just finished your Long Run, and you suddenly crave “more carbs” with sea salt! LOL! (This actually happened to me). I wanted a baked sweet potato after a long run, and fortunately I live within a 5km radius from a grocery store (and beer store), and was able to walk over & get my potatoes, (conserve energy, do a batch for family as well), and nom-nom… it was done. I had a walk to help cool down the body, and the car stayed parked at home, to reduce the emissions.

As I think ahead now to my move out of Brampton, I ponder; how will I keep my cycling active, and how will my family access stores, library, schools, and recreation? Well again all of these are within a 5km radius. So instead of “hopping in the car” to buy a ‘Timmies’, I can walk over, with my own Mug (reduce my carbon footprint-use with reusable), and walk home. My children will be attending a school that is a 1km walk or bike from our home — done. If I only need a few grocery items, I can bike over and use either a backpack, or my saddle bag for the items.

I am inspired by our new challenges ahead, and will continue to advocate for safe cycling infrastructure and communities coming together, getting outside, and “rethinking the car” for short trips. Spending time being active outdoors has been proven to reduce your stress, help with your sleep, and of course burn some calories…

How will you challenge yourself to “rethink the car” in your communities?

Look it up, for those who are not living in a rural setting. What’s within your 5km radius for walking, or 10km for cycling? If you are rural, can you park at one end of town and walk to complete all of your errands?

I will not ever be a “car free” person. I love my car and the luxury to escape for hiking or camping, and travel to be with family in Kincardine. A road trip across the border will always be a part of my lifestyle. However, I will take on this challenge for my short trips in the future. I would love to hear what you will do?”

Thanks Lorie! We will miss your contagious engaging contribution to BikeBrampton and our community! Thank you for everything you have done! Your new community is lucky indeed. Please stay in touch with your friends in Brampton. Lorie, we love you!

For those of you who don’t already know, Lorie was responsible for enlisting 40 people from her company, Greenfield Global Inc. to cycle in Bike the Creek 2017. Lorie also organized and ran Manitou Park Bike Parade for the last 2 years. She organized a Bike Donation and Swap at Massey Street Public School. She has done much, much more, as you can imagine!