Morning traffic can be insufferable, even if you do carpool with several others. You spend most of your day sitting in traffic, sitting at the office and then sitting in traffic again to get home where you sit some more for dinner and relaxation time. On top of that, you may have several days a month where you cannot seem to get going on time or you are running late. If you want to incorporate speed and fitness into your daily commute, here are some possible suggestions (just do not attempt any of these in heels!).
In many major cities across the country now, there are "rent a bicycle" stations. These bicycle stations are located close to other forms of public transportation, such as a subway entrance or a bus stop. A quick slip of your debit or credit card allows you to rent a bike for one hour and return it to any other rent-a-bicycle station in the city. You could even start out slow and easy by taking the subway or bus most of the way to work, then renting the bicycle to get the rest of the way there. Any of these options is frequently faster than carpooling in bumper to bumper traffic.
If there is enough open sidewalk space or your city allows you to rollerskate in the bike lane, you could always rollerskate to work. Rollerblading, which became very popular in the last decade, is equally good for fitness and speed and even encourages better balance since you have to roll along on a single line of wheels instead of two pairs of wheels. You may want to take a dry run at this on your day off to see how long it will take you to get from home to the office. It may be slow-going at first and you will want to build up speed as you become more fit and can move more quickly with more control. Also, you will need to stash your work shoes in your desk, or take them with you in your work bag. (Ladies who decide to rollerskate or rollerblade to work should also avoid skirts and dresses to allow for freedom of movement and prevent the skirt or dress bottom from catching on anything as they zoom down the street.)
Skateboarding requires an even higher level of fitness because you have to stay on the board, consistently push off the ground to create momentum and speed, and your body has to control the direction of the board using both feet and some of your lower torso. Once you have moved beyond the fitness levels required for biking, rollerskating and/or rollerblading, you may want to skateboard to work to increase your fitness and speed even further. Since most cities do not allow skateboards on sidewalks, be prepared to move along in the bike lane and watch for carpooling commuters who may try to move into the bike lane to get around traffic. Contact a business, such as Tri-A-Bike Inc, for more information.