Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

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Talar
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Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby Talar » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:02 am

Wanted to get your thoughts on biking to work. I'm starting as a biglaw associate and live a few miles from work. No trains close by, and I don't want to get a car. Is it possible to bike to work? Would you keep spare clothes at work in case you somehow manage to fuck up your clothes while getting to work? Any other issues/benefits?

Anonymous User
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:53 am

at my summer firm, there was a partner who ran to work everyday. He would take a shower in the firm's executive bathroom (with a shower) and change into suits.

imchuckbass58
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:58 pm

It's definitely feasible, but some things to consider that may or may not apply to your situation:

(1) What are you going to do when it rains / snows / is 100 degrees out / is 20 degrees out?

(2) How bike-friendly is the area you live in? For instance, I would strongly recommend against doing this if your firm is in midtown Manhattan. Citibike notwithstanding, if you bike in midtown during rush hour every day, you will get hit by a car.

(3) Imagine you have to stay until 11pm, or 1am, or worse (not completely uncommon). Are you going to want to bike home? If you take a cab home, how will you get to work in the morning?

(4) Is there a good, relatively theft-proof place to store / rack your bike at work?

I personally would not do it for the above reasons, but I can definitely see how it could work. As far as how, if you're biking far, or biking somewhere where you will get sweaty, I would bike in workout clothes (doubles as exercise!) and shower / change at work if that's available. If it's a short distance and you won't get sweaty, I guess biking in work clothes is fine, but keep a change of clothes at the office on the off chance you fall, or get splashed by a car, or whatever.

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LeDique
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby LeDique » Mon Jun 17, 2013 2:47 pm

imchuckbass58 wrote:It's definitely feasible, but some things to consider that may or may not apply to your situation:

(1) What are you going to do when it rains / snows / is 100 degrees out / is 20 degrees out?

(2) How bike-friendly is the area you live in? For instance, I would strongly recommend against doing this if your firm is in midtown Manhattan. Citibike notwithstanding, if you bike in midtown during rush hour every day, you will get hit by a car.

(3) Imagine you have to stay until 11pm, or 1am, or worse (not completely uncommon). Are you going to want to bike home? If you take a cab home, how will you get to work in the morning?

(4) Is there a good, relatively theft-proof place to store / rack your bike at work?

I personally would not do it for the above reasons, but I can definitely see how it could work. As far as how, if you're biking far, or biking somewhere where you will get sweaty, I would bike in workout clothes (doubles as exercise!) and shower / change at work if that's available. If it's a short distance and you won't get sweaty, I guess biking in work clothes is fine, but keep a change of clothes at the office on the off chance you fall, or get splashed by a car, or whatever.


Holy shit, what? This post is ridiculous. Every attorney in my office bikes to work at least some of the time.

(1) You dress for the weather. This is pretty easy to do. You can either have a change of clothes when it's raining or you can wear covers or you can wear clothing designed for this purpose. Really not that hard. I keep a hand towel in my bag to wipe sweat off my face and that's usually more than enough in hot weather.

(2) Judging from OP's questions, yeah, OP sounds like they lack the experience and confidence to do this in a non-bike friendly place right now. So this is the most valid consideration, but the risk of injury is not THAT high.

(3) Because you can't bike at night? What? I don't even know what the concern here is.

(4) I mean, ok. Depending on his office situation, one can probably keep it in their office. That's what all of us do here, though it usually turns into whoever is out on furlough's office is the bike storage office. Otherwise a good lock is the best you can do.

imchuckbass58
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:31 pm

LeDique wrote:Holy shit, what? This post is ridiculous. Every attorney in my office bikes to work at least some of the time.

(1) You dress for the weather. This is pretty easy to do. You can either have a change of clothes when it's raining or you can wear covers or you can wear clothing designed for this purpose. Really not that hard. I keep a hand towel in my bag to wipe sweat off my face and that's usually more than enough in hot weather.

(2) Judging from OP's questions, yeah, OP sounds like they lack the experience and confidence to do this in a non-bike friendly place right now. So this is the most valid consideration, but the risk of injury is not THAT high.

(3) Because you can't bike at night? What? I don't even know what the concern here is.

(4) I mean, ok. Depending on his office situation, one can probably keep it in their office. That's what all of us do here, though it usually turns into whoever is out on furlough's office is the bike storage office. Otherwise a good lock is the best you can do.


Ok, well clearly you showed that YOU can bike to work, but that's not what I was getting at. I have no doubt that some can bike to work if they want to, the questions is whether they want to do what's necessary to bike to work given their location and situation.

(1) What if you live in area where there's snow on the ground for a significant part of the winter? What if you don't want to get soaked and change every time it rains? What if you live in an area where it's between 90-100 most days in the summer and will basically sweat through your clothes just by being outside?

(2) Maybe it's not dangerous to bike where you live. I, for one, need more than two hands to count the number of people I know who have been hit by cars while riding bikes in New York, some of whom were seriously injured. It really is that unsafe to bike in midtown during rush hour, what with taxis weaving in and out of traffic, cars speeding to catch lights, car doors opening all over the place, and masses of pedestrians jaywalking constantly. I love biking, and do it several times a week either at off-peak hours or outside midtown. But I think it's way too dangerous to bike to work where I live.

(3) The concern is not that you can't bike at night (though some people don't like to because of lower visibility, etc). The concern is whether you'll want to bike home when you're dead tired after having worked 16 hours straight and not having gotten a good night's sleep in the last few days.

(4) That's great that you have good bike storage. in New York, there is not enough room to keep bikes in the offices that most first year associate share. Not to mention, many buildings will not let you bring bikes inside. Bikes get stolen outside even with a good lock - maybe that's a risk some people are fine with, but others might not be.

Maybe these concerns don't apply to / don't bother OP. But there are many people / places where these concerns would make biking inconvenient or undesirable. It sounds like everyone in your office bikes to work. That's great. As a counterpoint, I know of literally nobody at the firm I worked at that bikes to work, even though I know many of them have bikes, for exactly these reasons.

MoonshineJoe
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby MoonshineJoe » Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:48 pm

I frequently biked to law school and (non-biglaw) work in DC for a few years. In my opinion the number one concern is the availability of a shower at work. If you have a shower at the office then you can ride in wearing bike-appropriate clothes and change at the office. Get a good set of panniers (or messenger bag, or backpack, whatever works) and bring your clothes in that. Leave a suit at the office so you don't have to worry about wrinkles for important meetings.

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wert3813
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby wert3813 » Mon Jun 17, 2013 7:42 pm

LeDique wrote:
imchuckbass58 wrote:It's definitely feasible, but some things to consider that may or may not apply to your situation:

(1) What are you going to do when it rains / snows / is 100 degrees out / is 20 degrees out?

(2) How bike-friendly is the area you live in? For instance, I would strongly recommend against doing this if your firm is in midtown Manhattan. Citibike notwithstanding, if you bike in midtown during rush hour every day, you will get hit by a car.

(3) Imagine you have to stay until 11pm, or 1am, or worse (not completely uncommon). Are you going to want to bike home? If you take a cab home, how will you get to work in the morning?

(4) Is there a good, relatively theft-proof place to store / rack your bike at work?

I personally would not do it for the above reasons, but I can definitely see how it could work. As far as how, if you're biking far, or biking somewhere where you will get sweaty, I would bike in workout clothes (doubles as exercise!) and shower / change at work if that's available. If it's a short distance and you won't get sweaty, I guess biking in work clothes is fine, but keep a change of clothes at the office on the off chance you fall, or get splashed by a car, or whatever.


Holy shit, what? This post is ridiculous. Every attorney in my office bikes to work at least some of the time.

(1) You dress for the weather. This is pretty easy to do. You can either have a change of clothes when it's raining or you can wear covers or you can wear clothing designed for this purpose. Really not that hard. I keep a hand towel in my bag to wipe sweat off my face and that's usually more than enough in hot weather.

(2) Judging from OP's questions, yeah, OP sounds like they lack the experience and confidence to do this in a non-bike friendly place right now. So this is the most valid consideration, but the risk of injury is not THAT high.

(3) Because you can't bike at night? What? I don't even know what the concern here is.

(4) I mean, ok. Depending on his office situation, one can probably keep it in their office. That's what all of us do here, though it usually turns into whoever is out on furlough's office is the bike storage office. Otherwise a good lock is the best you can do.
The hell dude? The guy writes a well reasoned post about some possible concerns with biking and you give him shit. TLS.

Talar
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Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 3:56 pm

Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby Talar » Tue Jun 18, 2013 8:39 am

Thanks for the responses. Ya, one of my big concerns was getting wrinkles in my clothes from carrying them in a bag to change into at work or alternatively getting my clothes muddy/sweaty if I biked in them to work. It seems like I'll choose to risk option 1, because I think my office has a shower. Also, I'll have to leave a suit or two at work just in case big meetings come up. Still though, anyone else think it looks sloppy to be in wrinkled clothes (from having them in your bag)? I don't want to give off the wrong appearance or like I'm not put together.

Anonymous User
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:17 am

When I'm training for a marathon (every 3-4 years; I'm a sub-3:00 guy), I run into work most days. Only way to fit in 10+ miles a day. I keep a permanent stash of non-suit clothes in my office, and a couple of suits (these are there regardless of whether I'm training). Our building has a gym/shower, so I just head down when I get in. Though sometimes I'll get stuck on an early call before I have time, and I'll be sitting in my sweaty running clothes until 10:00 or so. No one has said anything.

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nealric
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby nealric » Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:48 pm

I bike to work in lower Manhattan with a folding bike. It folds into a bag I can throw over my shoulder and bring up to the office. I have the subway as well for when it is raining or snowing. I bike in pretty much any temp- just bundle up when it is cold. Lower Manhattan is much easier than Midtown (I have done Midtown before). Specific locations can make a big difference. Getting to midtown east can be a nightmare, but other parts may not be quite so bad.

As far as late nights, I think it's actually nice to get a bike ride in after a long day in the office. It clears your head.

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dood
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Re: Biking to work (and other commuting issues)

Postby dood » Tue Jun 18, 2013 3:10 pm

Talar wrote:Thanks for the responses. Ya, one of my big concerns was getting wrinkles in my clothes from carrying them in a bag to change into at work or alternatively getting my clothes muddy/sweaty if I biked in them to work. It seems like I'll choose to risk option 1, because I think my office has a shower. Also, I'll have to leave a suit or two at work just in case big meetings come up. Still though, anyone else think it looks sloppy to be in wrinkled clothes (from having them in your bag)? I don't want to give off the wrong appearance or like I'm not put together.


i bike to work everyday in DC in gym clothes and change there. 15 min in a duffle doesnt get dress stuff too wrinkled. wrinkle-free is key. yes, i leave a suit in my office.




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