Hello all. This forum has been very helpful to me (even in lurk mode), so thanks!
After a couple of weeks of research, I finally took home a bike yesterday. The first bike I've owned in probably well over a decade, more like closer to 15 years I'd say (I'm 27). First road bike I've ever owned.
2004 Specialized Allez Comp Double (got a nice price on it). Full Ultegra everything, 18 speed, Mavic Ksyrium Equipe wheelset, Mondo Pro tires, Avatar saddle, SPD clipless pedals (Shimano PD-M520 -- I like how they're double-sided, very good for this noob!) It's -- well, I freaking love it.
But anyway, I just did my first ride this morning. Hair over 13 miles, about an hour. Good number of hills (it's pretty hilly in the Towson area). I am pretty beat, but actually quite refreshed. NO KNEE PAIN which is a big reason I'm cooling it with jogging and bought a bike!
What can I say? Is it possible for road bike addiction to hit you after your first real taste? You know, like crack? Cuz I am pretty amped on this road biking thing right now!!!! Everything about the experience was easier than I expected. Yeah I did some test rides, but this was the first real ride, and my absolute first ride w/ the clipless setup (wearing Specialized Sonoma shoes). The bike fits me GREAT, is seriously comfortable, the clipless pedals were easier than I expected to get in and out of (still a few hiccups, heheh). Even cars were a lot "nicer" than I expected (at was around 10am on a Sunday, after all). I mean, the whole experience was just GRAND!!!
Looking forward to many, many more rides, building up my endurance to the point where I can hit some of the very nice (but darn hilly) country roads up here, especially in time for Autumn foliage!
Lemond Buenos Aries, Gary Fisher Tassajara, Trek 4500, plus many more
Darn it, now you went and did it. For some all it takes is one try and you are an addict. The only thing left for you now is to join some of the other addicts in your area and go to the meetings and confess, "I....I...I'm new here....and I'm an addict!!" If it's like most places in this country, you will find a knowing nod and a comforting smile as others admit and think back to that first confession by them as well.
4th day with the bike, 4th ride, and today was my first 20 mile. Beautiful ride around Loch Raven Reservoir, saw some deer on the side of the road hanging out, beat some hills I could not BELIEVE I managed to handle. Sure, I think I was at 39-25, but crap, I beat them! I am so in LURVE -- my odometer is already at 57 miles, and it's been 4 days! Heheh! And the CRAZY thing is -- NO pain in my left knee (the weak spot, heh) at ANY point, during the ride or afterwards! Legs are "tired" afterwards, but I don't feel "in pain" at ALL. By the next morning (I have been riding evenings), I'm good as new!
Aaah, the flood of emotions that overtake a lad of 27, with his first bike since childhood, and being even in more love with the experience than he had expected...