goal thread here. It is started every month. There are people with 50 mile monthly goals to 700 mile monthly goals. It's a great motivator.
One of my biggest pet peeves is the "BSO" or "Bike Shaped Object" title the bike snobs puts on department store bikes. I'm sure no one who rides one thinks it's the greatest bike out there. They are what they are, a cheap bike, but they are bikes. Chevys are cheap pieces of junk too, but I've never heard of them being called ASO's or Auto Shaped Objects in the automotive enthusiast world.
Last year I was quite vocal about what I was riding and the condition it was in. Of course, I was wanting something better, but it was what I had and it got me on a bike. It also lost me 30 lb. in 3 months. My bike was a Walmart dual suspension mountain bike I bought for $99 in 2005 to have something to ride a mile or 2 on the bike trail with my then 5 year old daughter as I taught her to ride a bike. It ended up buried in the corner of the garage for at least 5 years when my daughter who had then turned 11 two years ago at 5'2" tall, wanted to ride a bike again and she couldn't ride her old 2nd bike anymore. I dusted it off for her to ride around in the yard with her younger sister on her old bike. This was last summer. It was left out in the rain all the time and was even buried in the snow all winter long out in the yard.
The beginning of last spring when the snow and ice thawed out, I brought it back into the garage. The chain was completely frozen with rust. She wanted to ride around the yard again, so I sprayed the chain with PB Blaster for a couple of days and worked the chain loose. She rode it around in the yard, again leaving it out overnight in the rain all the time.
At the end of summer, I was looking for something to do with exercise. A few coworkers were riding mountain bikes (Bikes Direct bikes that they just bought) on the bike trails. I thought maybe I'd try it out. The Walmart job wouldn't shift gears and was in terrible shape. All the cables were frayed, it was bad. I read a bit about adjusting everything and disassembled the brakes and deraileurs. This is the first time I had touched adjusting anything on the bike. I wasn't going to put any money into it with the frayed cables and everything so I adjusted the best I could. I cleaned all the deraileur stuff and got it shifting again. Got the brakes working again and headed out on my own on the bike trail.
So here it is for MRT2. I rode 3 months on that bike which was already 7 or 8 years old and previously left out in the rain and snow. I kept it on a trunk mount bike rack on my car rain or shine to ride after work. I rode at least 12 miles every day I could trying to get about 100 miles a week in. I rode a few times 16 then 18 then 26 miles. I had to put a new tube in each tire to start, but other than that, all I did was do the best I could with adjusting the deraileurs and brakes. I had never done anything previously even when I bought it to the bike. The front and rear gear teeth are all practically round because they are worn well past worn-out. I'm sure the chain is stretched to Canada and back. It is terribly uncomfortable, but it got me riding and in those 3 months, on a very worn out 8 year old Walmart bike, I rode 580 miles. That was between the starting weight of 247 to the end weight of 220.
If I kept up with it, I was going to buy a new bike in the spring. I did just that. Riding that Walmart bike allowed me plenty of time in the saddle thinking about what I wanted. I went out and bought my Giant Escape 1. If not for a $99 Walmart bike purchased 8 years ago to ride a mile with my 5 year old daughter, I probably wouldn't be riding a bike for exercise now.
I hope you thoroughly enjoy the bike. I hope to hear your progress in the near future. The progress comes fast. You may tell us tomorrow how you rode 3 miles and most of us will give you a "great job!" Next week, you'll be telling us how you rode 10 miles, then 15, then 20. I hope to see you jump into the monthly goal thread. You'll enjoy it and next year we'll be hearing about your new Cannondale Quick or Fuji Absolute, Giant Escape, Trek FX, or perhaps we'll hear about your new road bike. The $85 spent will show you what you want and don't want.
Note, stick around with this Clydes/Athenas forum. It is a great bunch of folks here who will only encourage you. Compared to most of the rest of Bike Forums, this is the most encouraging and caring group of folks on the forum (toss the Hybrid and 50+ sections in there too, not much snobbery in those areas either.) Good luck and can't wait to hear how you're doing. I was you just 11 months ago.