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5 Ways to Make Your Commute More Active 

Americans spend an average of 26 minutes commuting to work every day (and another 26 to get home). New research suggests that how those minutes are spent can have an impact on health and longevity.

A study published in the British Medical Journal found that people who biked to work—instead of taking public transit or driving—were 41% less likely to die prematurely. People who biked part of the way to work saw a 24% lower risk. Walking also had benefits—people who walked to work were 27% less likely to have a heart attack and 36% less likely to die from heart related issues.

Given the benefits possible from a more active commute, we’ve highlighted five ways you can (creatively) get more exercise and get to work at the same time.

1. Make it a run or urban hike

Depending on where you’re going, in some cities running can be faster than public transit or even driving through traffic. Running to the office allows you to get in your workout and get there faster. Try running with a well fitting backpack, or leave a change of clothes in the office the day before.

2. Enjoy a ‘Tour de Commute’ 

Biking is one of the most popular ways to do an active commute. Biking can be challenging if your city doesn’t have bike lanes or is congested, but many cities are making their streets more bike friendly, and sites like MapMyRide or Google Maps can help you plot out the safest route.

3. Get an alternate set of wheels

Don’t have a bike? Commuters have used rollerblades, skateboards, and scooters to get to and from work.

4. Get active part of the way

If you’re too far from work or lack the infrastructure to bike, run, or wheel the whole way into work, try going part of the way. For example, if you take public transit get off a stop earlier and walk. If you drive into the city, consider parking at a Park and Ride lot just outside and go from there.

5. Skip traffic, drive later 

If you have a long commute due to traffic, try going for a run right after work near your office. The 30 to 45 minutes you're exercising can help you ski rush hour traffic and have a quicker commute home.