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Fuel and Fat: lowering the high costs

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( gasoline prices on the rise and obesity at an all-time high, lowering consumption in one form or another is top of mind for many Americans. But associating these two problems with one another doesn't come easy for many people.

According to the latest US Census, 76% of Americans commuted alone in their cars to work. And a mere 1.2% use another means of transportation (such as bicycles) to get to work. In addition, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) found that one-fourth of all trips outside the home are one mile or less, and three quarters of these excursions are made by car! The bicycle, a simple yet often overlooked solution, tackles both fuel and calorie consumption simultaneously.

Understandably, many people forgo the bike as a means of transportation or weight control because traditional bicycles can be awkward to store when they are not being ridden and even harder to transport in a car. To address these concerns, Montague Corporation of Cambridge, Massachusetts has launched a high-tech foldable mountain bike that makes the cycling experience more convenient for everyone. This bike was actually developed under military funding for paratroopers to use once they hit the ground and is now available to the general public. A patented technology allows it to fold in less than thirty seconds, without using any tools, to a compact 3x3x1 package. The aluminum frame and Shimano components make the bike weigh less than 30 lbs and, best of all, it has the same ride quality as a high end Trek or Cannondale mountain bike.

So, instead of driving your gas guzzling SUV to work, now you can drive your gas guzzling SUV half way to work, pull your folded mountain bike out of the trunk, and start to burn something that we as Americans seem to have plenty of, fat!

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