I started my weight loss Journey about 5 months ago at an all time high of 265 lbs (I am 6' 1.5"). Today when I weighed myself, I have nudged just under 220 lbs and my goal weight of 190 lbs is starting to come within sight. I have purchased 2 new bikes this year (a single speed REI Novara Buzz commuter/townie in March and a leftover 2010 KHS Flite 220 road bike in April).
The single speed is an absolute blast to ride and that is going to be a member of my stable for a long time. The KHS, on the other hand, was a compromise bike. I sold my touring bike in February after deciding that I didn't want a drop bar bike and that my hybrid would be good enough for me. What really happened was that I resigned myself to riding a bike that for a cyclist is the equivalent of giving up on life and only wearing sweat pants.
When I started riding that single speed, it sort of lit a fire under me and made me want a bike that you can ride fast. Well, that just happens to be a road bike. Enter the KHS: a 30 lb beast of a road bike with low end components. I wanted better, but didn't have the money at the time. I know the owner of a bike shop and was able to buy a new Flite 220 for under $400. I could have found a better (or higher end) used bike on craigslist, but I wanted something with a steel frame, room for big tires, and a compact double. I couldn't find anything that fit my parameters, so I got the KHS.
I've actually enjoyed the bike a lot and made a couple of small upgrades to make the bike better suit me. There are still issues. I hate the Sora style STI levers and toe overlap is a bit of a problem both because I chose a smaller frame size (wanted a short top tube for my bad back) and I have size 14 shoes. From the moment I bought it, I knew that I wanted a nicer bike. I still like steel bikes with lots of tire clearance and now that I have ridden a compact double, I am hooked.
There are 3 bikes on my short list right now:
3.) Specialized Secteur Comp - This bike is neither steel nor does it have lots of tire clearance, but it is in the plush category of road bike. I have never owned a bike with fairly racy geometry or carbon fiber of any sort. I checked one out today and it should fit a 28c tire without any issues which will allow me to roll down smooth dirt roads and better span some of the gnarly moisture expansion cracks in the lovely roads we have here.
2.) Salsa Vaya - Who wouldn't want a burly road bike with disc brakes? This isn't a great deal lighter than my KHS, but this thing would go anywhere I would want it to. I also like SRAM double tap levers a lot. This does have all of the parameters I want in a bike.
1.) Jamis Quest - I think this balances light weight and racy performance with comfort just about perfectly. These have long reach brakes and may take up to a 32c tire, but certainly a 28c tire will fit with no issues. This seems like the likely candidate for my next bike.
So, this thread my seem like it has no direction, but I was just curious to see with what others have rewarded themselves or plan to reward themselves.