Chloe Martin-Cabanne is an Operations Clerk at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts. A recent update to an e-bike has brought extra power to her commute.
1. How did you get into biking to work?
I started cycling to work last summer because my bike gave me the freedom to go anywhere I liked. I started out by loading my pedal bike onto a crowded bus in the mornings, but eventually realized that I could bike up the hill just as quickly. The sweat got to me, though, and I knew that there had to be a better way. I don’t have a driver’s license, and I didn’t want to pay for gas, insurance, or parking anyway. Every morning, I’d see these guys whiz past me on their e-bikes, and I realized that they had the answer. They had an eco-friendly option that could propel them faster than a regular bike, without any of the inconveniences of owning a vehicle. I ended up getting an e-bike of my own – a converted Norco Indie 4 commuter bike with a motor in the front hub and a rack on the back for my battery. I’ve been cycling to work every day, rain or shine, and haven’t looked back.
2. What’s the most important tip you would you give to someone who is new to bike commuting?
Get an e-bike! Grin Technologies can set you up with a kit for your cycling needs. All you need is a functioning bicycle – they’ll help you choose the right battery and motor for your needs. Study a map so that you’re familiar with bike routes through the city, and know how to behave in traffic when you’re out on the road. Lights for your bike and a reflective vest will help you to stay visible to vehicles. Panniers are essential so that you can run errands along your route.
3. What fuels you to bike?
Electricity! Even when I’m exhausted after a long day, I know that my pedal assist will help me home.
4. Multiple Choice: Which one of these is the most challenging for you? A) the hill B) the rain C) the sweat or D) the distance? E) other____
E) Ice. Icy rain, icy snow, icy wind. I find cold weather quite challenging.
5. How do you conquer this challenge?
Wear lots of layers and peel them back as you ride. Better to be too warm than too cold! This year, I’ll invest in a pair of winter tires so that I can ride as far into the season as possible. Gore-tex is also essential against the wet weather.