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JBER gears up for September Commuter Challenge

By Airman 1st Class Crystal A. Jenkins | JBER Public Affairs | Aug. 29, 2018

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska —

The Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson total force community has a month long opportunity to participate in the 2018 September Commuter Challenge sponsored by Bike Anchorage scheduled to run from Sept. 1 through 28.

The event will end with an awards gala scheduled to take place September 29, at the 49th State Brewing Company in Anchorage, Alaska.

“This one-month challenge is a fun way our community can really come together and have a different type of physical-training outlet,” said Mathew Mills, plans officer for the 673rd Air Base Wing. “Just signing up and riding one time helps you, your team and the environment.”

Even though there are widely varying levels of commitment when it comes to alternative commuting, everyone can benefit from a cardio workout and networking with others.  

“I think most people are very busy with their lives and often, exercise is the first thing to go,” Mills said. “A couple of things Airmen, Soldiers and their families share in common is the need to be resilient and fit to fight. Cycling is a way to accomplish both of these at the same time.”

Trails all the way through the Eagle River and Anchorage community make it easy to commute anywhere via bicycle.

“The biking community in this area is phenomenal when it comes to linking people with riding groups and introducing them to the hundreds of miles of paved trails making it safe and easy,” said Dana Rosso, JBER Public Affairs operation chief, who is also a bike-to-work commuter. “Additionally, biking to and from work allows me to have time to relax while also being able to focus on cardio.”

If showing up to work sweaty is a concern, Buckner and Elmendorf physical fitness centers in addition to Hangar 5 all have showering facilities available 24 hours a day.

In the past, more than 140 JBER community members have accepted similar workplace challenges conducted annually by Bike Anchorage from June through August.

“Even though many of us already ride, we’re hoping more people will get involved with this great opportunity,” Mills said. “It is a great way to meet people who have similar interests and through this comradery, build resiliency.”         

JBER participants who accept the challenge to commute by bike, foot, bus or carpool are encouraged to log all hours. The challenge is free, to register, visit linkak.org/s/september and join the JBER network.