81 Year Old Man Comes Out of Retirement as an “Excuse” to Commute by Electric Bike!

Guest post by Cathy Lau from Ohm Electric Bikes.

Jean Dion is not your typical bike commuter, but he is certainly a devoted one.

Unlike most commuters who choose to bike because they need to get to work one way or another, Jean is an 81 year old retiree who has started working again as an excuse and incentive to commute by electric bike.

To him, cycling is critical to keeping his weight down and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Incorporating it into a daily commute is his way of making biking an integral part of his life.

Jean rides at least six days a week to get to his “workplaces.”  Jean rides to homes all over Vancouver’s (BC) West End to collect recyclable cans and bottles for pocket change.

It’s an enviable commute. Living in Vancouver, a typical day allows him to take in the breathtaking views of beaches, mountains, and greenery that the city is known for. It’s a great way to appreciate the luxury of living in one of the world’s most beautiful cities, while getting in daily exercise and making a bit of money. He uses the money he makes to pay for the cost of maintaining his OHM electric bike, as well as for extra spending money.

“I am not cheap but I like making money – regardless of how little it is,” Jean tells us.

To Jean, the money is just a bonus to the health benefits that regular cycling brings him. Jean originally bought the bike to keep his weight down, and started collecting recyclables as a motivation to keep going.

He rarely skips a single day, especially since his electric bike lets him ride through rain or shine.

“Prior to purchasing the Ohm electric bike, I was using a regular bike until August 2009, then it got to be too much for me. I require some peddling assistance. I need some major exercise to keep my weight down.”

He describes: “The West End and Stanley Park have a mixture of terrain: flat in some areas and quite hilly in others. I use the battery only when needed, like uphill, getting started or when hauling a heavy load. Most of the time I carry 10 or 15 pounds, to as much as 100 lbs. The battery normally lasts me an average of 2 ½ hours when used on the above mentioned basis. When biking with no load around Stanley Park or to the East towards False Creek and beyond – depending on the terrain – you might get more mileage from the same ‘charge’.”

“A fully charged battery lasts approximately 2 ½ hours. Usually I use most of the battery charge. Each time I go biking I am out for an average of 2 hours plus. I always pedal assist to get my exercise.

“I have another conventional bike that I used once in a while and I soon realised that I do not have the stamina to ride it often.  So the electric bike helps me to keep busy and maintain my exercise more efficiently.

“The bike has helped me to do my things on a day to day basis and makes them a lot more enjoyable – without getting me exhausted.”

End of Guest Post

That is an inspiring story!  Electric bikes are great commuting vehicles that provide exercise and fun.  I am glad to hear that Jean found an “excuse” to ride his e-bike more :)

Please share your electric bike commuting story in the comments section below.

Thanks!

P.S. Don’t forget to join the Electric Bike Report community for updates from the electric bike world, plus ebike riding and maintenance tips!


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13 Comments

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  1. Ken Sanders October 22, 2012 at 3:38 pm #

    We have anyway via internet that we can contact Jean Dion ?

    • Pete October 22, 2012 at 4:53 pm #

      Hi Ken, do you mind if I give Jean your email so that he can contact you?

  2. Kevin from Trailsnet.com October 22, 2012 at 4:03 pm #

    That’s a great story and a testament to the usefulness of electric bikes.
    I’m especially interested in the bike trailer he’s pulling in the photo. Does anybody know who makes that?

  3. eric hicks October 23, 2012 at 12:53 am #

    Yeah but how fast does he go :)

    • Pete October 23, 2012 at 10:11 am #

      Not as fast as you would like Eric :)

  4. Simon Lodewijks October 26, 2012 at 8:31 pm #

    Good for you Jean. I am ‘only’ 72 but can relate to your story. For economic reasons I sold my car almost 2 years ago and with that money I bought a Hebb 700 e-bike. My health has improved, the maintenance of my e bike is minimal. Dollars I have saved by not needing fuel and licensing is substantial and insurance is a fraction of owning a car.
    Have cycled 6050 miles during the last 17 months, have discovered many trails, beautiful neighborhoods and many beautiful little parks tucked away. All in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley.

    Simon the e-Cycler

    • W W Ching October 28, 2012 at 5:27 am #

      Hi,

      We manufacture the Hebb ebikes, would like very much to contact Simon Lodewijks.

      • Pete October 28, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

        Hi W W Ching,

        I have forwarded your email address to Simon.

        Thanks

    • Pete October 28, 2012 at 1:00 pm #

      Thanks for sharing your story Simon! That is awesome! Enjoy your next ride.

  5. david myers October 27, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

    I’m 56 and still using a conventional bike exclusivly, but am encouraged to hear that with electric assist I may be commuting the same distances in another twenty-five years if my health holds up – you go young man !

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  1. Ohm Electric Bikes to be Featured on Dragons’ Den TV Show! | Electric Bike Report | Electric Bike, Ebikes, Electric Bicycles, E Bike, Reviews - January 11, 2013

    [...] of our bikes, so a test ride really gets across what is possible on an OHM,” says DeVisser. “An 81-year-old Vancouver man uses his OHM to ride six to eight hours a day, while a Washington woman planning a group cycling [...]

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