Be Active is one of our 5 ways to Wellbeing, and physical activity can be a great way to switch off from worry or stress. Sometimes we store negative emotions in our body, so just shaking, stretching or moving our bodies can help us let go of this. 

For many, the start of the new year means setting a new years resolution. This could be related to being more active, improving our physical or mental health, starting something new, saving money, or finding ways to reduce the impact we have on the environment. 

Turning resolutions into revolutions 

Bob Dixon, Director EMEA Sales, Cunard, tells us how the CUK Cycle-to-work community might be just what you need to get your resolutions off to a great start – and keep them up throughout the year:

Assuming you’ll be coming into the office three days per week, that’s six spurts of physical activity.  Within a few weeks of cycling to work we can guarantee your belt will need tightening, you’ll enjoy sharper mental alacrity at work and you’ll be sleeping better.

The sense of well-being and of achievement is palpable and it will boost your confidence.

When we sent out the ‘travel to work’ questionnaire last year, we asked what would motivate people to start cycling to work. Some asked whether there might be a financial incentive.  Well that incentive is built-in.  As an example, let’s take someone who lives seven miles from the office.  Assuming three visits to the office for 46 weeks of the year, that would be 1,932 miles. 

At the HMRC rate of 45p per mile, that would cost you £869 in fuel and depreciation.  If you’re coming over the Itchen Bridge than that’s an additional £276 in tolls.  If you don’t have an allocated space, that’s an additional £690 in parking (and I believe those tariffs are due to rise in 2024.)  These potential savings are material and could be spent on other things… like holidays! 

By logging on to you can measure the impact your new mode of commuting is having on the environment, measured in reduced CO2.  As well as improving air quality, you are making an additional contribution by reducing traffic volumes into Southampton. 

Without wishing to sound too evangelical, cycling to work has been a step change for me in terms of health and resilience.  It has also increased my social circle.  I have even made friends with a family of swans on the way to work and most days I stop to feed them sunflower seeds. 

January may not be the most inviting month to become a cog-wheeled commuter, but if you can survive the meteorological vicissitudes of January and February, then you’ll easily cope with whatever mother nature throws at us for the rest of the year.  In any case, in the undercroft there is a remastered shower facility, where you can take a lovely, long, hot shower (at CUK’s expense!) and we even provide shower gel and fresh towels for people who forget theirs. And should your bike be in need of some on the spot TLC, we have a tool station and pump available too.

So, make good on your promises to yourself and commit to becoming a handlebar hero from January onwards! Ride to thrive:  Pedal for health, wealth and the planet. 

Join our friendly community!

If you haven’t cycled into Carnival House before then please notify Facilities in advance (by emailing the Carnival House inbox) so they can give you information about accessing the undercroft, showers, lockers and access rights. We also have a friendly community of Carnival House cyclists on our Teams channel, click here to join the group.

Keep a look out for more stories and information about how the 5 ways to wellbeing (Connect, Be Active, Give, Take Notice, and Keep Learning) can help you to stay well. 

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  1. Great article Bob. Having cycled nearly every day for 10 years until the dawn of covid I can confess the ihe impact of not cycling as regularly has had a detrimental effect on the waistline! Having just moved to Hamble again im back on it so hope to see you en route! For those that have not tried one thig to bear in mind is a very predictable commute time regardless of traffic and in most sub 10 mile commutes I suspect cycling is quicker.

  2. Enjoyed your article Bob! Everyone who cycles in to CUK are a lovely friendly bunch and have made me feel very welcome to the community since April, with my traditional looking bicycle + basket. The cold and Christmas break from cycling has been a shock to the system – am looking forward to not feeling the burn in a couple of weeks 🙂 But, I’m not looking forward to the “meteorological vicissitudes of January and February” that Bob has described above!

  3. I can confirm that when the cycling bug bites, you will miss the exercise when you are not commuting. So I now cycle in my lunch break when working from home, or in the evening. I am very pleased to read about the remastered shower facilities. Excellent news!

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