How to Maximize Your Commute
Commuting can eat up hours of your week, but what if it could actually be fun? Enter: Peloton's Hack the Commute collection.
By Haley Jena•
Commuting to and from work can eat up precious hours of your time each week—and generally, those hours aren’t all that fun. The time you could spend exercising, relaxing, running errands, or hanging out with loved ones gets relegated to transporting yourself to the office and back.
But what if that wasn’t the case? What if your commute could be a little more fun—and even become an integral part of your fitness and wellness routine? (Spoiler alert: It’s possible.)
We spoke with Peloton instructor Jon Hosking, who recently worked on a new collection of commute-friendly classes, to get easy, actionable tips on how to make your commute better—plus, why you should.
We Spend Hours (and Hours) Commuting
Unless you work from home every day, you’re likely very familiar with the time spent traveling to and from the office. New Peloton research conducted with 4,000 UK consumers found that participants waste more than an hour a day commuting to and from work, with at least two unexpected delays tacking on an extra 22 minutes to their travel time. On average, participants commute more than three days a week, making for many hours lost in transportation. Worst of all, nearly half of participants said they hate their commute.
How to Make Your Commute Better
So, the bad news: Many of us despise our commutes. The good news: That can (and should) change.
“A commute can be used as the perfect time to set yourself for the day, whether that's by planning out a to-do list or simply taking the time to check in with yourself and how you're feeling, resetting before the working day begins,” Jon says.
Here are a few pro tips for making your commute healthier, more mindful, more enjoyable, and better all around:
1. Get Grounded with a Guided Meditation
Traffic jams, crowded trains, or delayed buses can make your commute feel hectic and stressful. But rather than giving in to the chaos, you can use that time to center yourself and find tranquility with a guided meditation.
While you might imagine meditation as something that needs to be done sitting upright in a perfect lotus pose with your eyes closed, the practice is much more versatile than that. You can knock out a 10-minute meditation while sitting on the bus or train, or try a 5-minute class after parking your car. “I have loved meditations on my way to work, giving myself the moment I deserve, ensuring I arrive in the right frame of mind,” Jon shares.
2. Try Some Light Stretching
Some jobs require lots of moving around, while others largely happen sitting at a desk all day. Either way, a consistent stretching routine can do your body some good. Before heading to work or returning home, try some gentle stretches to release tension and give your body an energy boost. (You could also try some light stretching during a bus or train ride, so long as you have the space and can safely do so.)
Unsure how to get started? There are plenty of great guided stretching classes to explore in Peloton’s Hack the Commute class collection.
3. Incorporate More Movement Into Your Commute
According to new Peloton research, just 12 percent of participants incorporate exercise into their commute—but it doesn’t have to be that way. Whether you’re training for a race or just want to move your body more, your commute can become a great workout window that you hadn’t previously considered.
For instance, reach your daily step goal by hopping off the train a few stops early and walking the rest of the way to work. Replace your daily drive with a bike ride if you love cycling. Park your car farther away than usual and power walk to and from the office. Knock out a few miles from your weekly running goal by running some (or all) of the way to work.
Long story short? There are plenty of ways to get moving while you’re getting to work—and Peloton’s Hack the Commute class collection can help make it happen.
4. Do a Quick Brain Dump
It can be (understandably) challenging to stay present during your commute. Our minds may focus on all the meetings in store for the day or ruminate on a project long after we’ve left the office. Rather than dwelling on everything that happened or will happen, try journaling out your thoughts while sitting on the train or bus (or after you’ve safely parked your car). Whether it’s on your phone’s notes app or in a physical notebook, doing a quick journaling session may help you process your thoughts and relieve stress. “Dumping” out whatever’s taking up mental space—work tasks, errands to run, something that’s worrying you—can be a great way to start or end the day.
5. Read a Chapter in Your Book
Are you a big bookworm? Make progress toward your yearly reading goal during your commute. If you take public transportation, make sure you tuck your book or e-reader into your work bag and knock out a chapter or two on your way to the office. If you drive to work, audiobooks can be a great way to make your commute better.
6. Listen to Your Favorite Playlist or Podcast
Kick off (or cap off) the work day with a podcast or playlist that always boosts your mood. Tune into a news podcast to stay in the know, or turn on your favorite comedy podcast to lighten your mood before a big day of meetings. Or, listen to one of your go-to playlists at the end of a long day to switch your brain from work mode to relax mode.
Hack Your Commute with Peloton
Ready to level up your commute, but not sure where to begin? Peloton’s Hack the Commute class collection offers over 30 guided meditations, stretches, walks, and runs that help you make the most of your commute. “The Hack the Commute collection can provide the space for you to practice mindfulness and calmly approach the day with a fresh attitude or attack your fitness goals, raise your heart rate, and release any pent-up stress you might be carrying,” Jon says.
This class collection is designed for all fitness levels and helps you reclaim your travel time, no matter what your commute looks like. Each class is led by Peloton’s encouraging, motivational instructors to help you start or end your workday on the right foot, whether that’s with a short meditation, an energizing walk, some feel-good stretches, or a restorative run. Not to mention, the Hack the Commute class collection is available for free with a 30-day trial of the Peloton App.