Thrilled to find a forum to obsess about biking. I am a 3 year addict. Started runnning April 2005 to lower cholesterol, and try to improve heart.( had an arrythmia, atrial fibrillation) Ran a 5k June 2005, with the goal of finishing upright, without puking. I did , in 33 minutes. Later found out we turned around too late and ran 3.8 rather than 3.1 miles. Then that June i remembered the aluminum schwinn 564, an old racing bike with down tube shifters and toe clips and straps. Also remembered why i never liked to run. I received it as a "bonus" from a former employer. I had ridden it 64 miles in the previous 7 years. Pulled it down and rode and loved it. Did my first race that August 24th, at Valley City, Ohio. Great race. My chain fell off as we neutraled to the start up a steep hill, and it jammed. Almost fell over trying to get my foot out. (bought new pedals real fast) Finally got the chain unjammed, teetered up the hill, but the cranks would slip every third turn, almost fell over three times going up. ( the chain was bent and when it went through the rear derailer it caused it to jerked forward and made the crank jerk down.) Well, by the time i got to the top the others were at the first turn, 2 miles away!! so, i thought do i throw the bike down the hill and go home or charge after? I charged. 24 miles later was dead last. But learned to draft from a lady rider who passed me up and we traded pulls and sympathy for my pedal, pedal SLIP bike. Averaged 19 mph and was hooked. Got shoes, pedals and last year a new? used cannondale r400 with shifters on the brakes, 7 speed shimano nothing shifters but it goes soooo much better. Dreams of upgrading to ultegra 9 or ten if i can squeeze them on. This should be the place to find out. I have a very limited budget. 7 kids will do that to you. And limited training time. I am a chiropractor and run a health club in a small town. Did 2 triathlons last year at 44 years old, and didn't die. Started my own bike race my second year, of riding and this July 12 th will be it's 3rd year. So, good to meet you all. Sorry so verbose, don't get out much, and my wife is not keen on my addiction.. C'est la vie. Dadof7.