I now cycle to work two or three days every week. I still take the train on my workout days, because otherwise I’m too tired in the evening to do the whole groceries-school-dinner-bedtime thing. Cycling takes about 15 minutes extra each way compared to the train, so sometimes I’m tempted to save that half-hour… but then I remind myself of how good it feels to cycle, and do it anyway.

There’s a good cycle track for me to follow almost all the way, with few pedestrians and few traffic lights. For the most part, few other cyclists as well, but around Alvik it sometimes gets a bit crowded. In the afternoon I leave earlier than most people since I work part time, so the cycle path is nearly empty, which I like even better.

Not only is my path clear – so is the space around me. Whenever I switch from cycle to car for some reason, I feel closed in. I am pushed down and strapped into a seat, with a roof almost touching my head and most of my view restricted and criss-crossed by objects. On a bike, I am high up and in the open.

That is why I like cycling. The exercise is a positive side effect, but it’s not why I cycle. I do it for this feeling of openness – the sensation of wind against my face, of space, of movement, strong and fast and free, with nothing and no one in my way. Freedom. Until I get to the office.