I will be adding to this page as ideas come to me, so check back!
#1 The cycling community has provided me with priceless information, advice and expertise. I live in a small town and my local bike shop always seems too busy to answer questions. Thank goodness for the online community that has helped me along the way. If you are new to this too, get some support!
#2 Raise your saddle for less achy knees and more powerful rotations. Raising my saddle alleviated 95% of my knee pain and when it has occasionally come back, I usually notice my saddle has slipped. Of course you can have your saddle too high, so experiment to find what works for you.
#3 Take snacks (just learning this one myself). One would think a mum with a toddler would always have plenty of these on hand...but I'm not talking cheerios or goldfish. I have found whole fruit and raw nuts to be great snacks to stop me from getting energy lows. I think when you are a new cyclist you get used to feeling exhausted and sometimes it's hard to know if it's due to low fuel or actually being "done".
#6 Experiment to find what motivates you to ride. I've found that trips with a destination or a specific purpose are far more enjoyable and fulfilling, buying groceries via bike gives me a sense of accomplishment that a joy ride can never provide (joy rides are great too).
#7 If you are seeking to decrease your car time gradually and replace it with trips by bike, try this- Find a map and draw a circle around your house that fits your cycling ability, complete all errands within that circle by bike and gradually increase the diameter to match your progress.
#8 If your saddle hurts, give it some time. If it still hurts get a new one.
#9 Adding music to my rides has been the best thing I've done since I got my cushy saddle. Of course riding is fun, especially on a lovely warm sunny day with a cool breeze, but add some reggae tunes and you take it to a whole new level of awesomeness, I feel like I'm on vacation and should have a margarita in my Sigg bottle. My whole set up came to under $30 and was a great investment.