Hello everyone. I am Native Las Vegan (which may mean nothing to most out there, but around here that is highly uncommon) and have been riding since I was 4 years old.
When I was growing up, I used to ride to and from my friends house about 6 miles away several times a day, at least 4 days of the week. I wish I had kept that up, then I probably would be able to do 70+ mile days now.
I bought my first "real" bike in May of 2005, a couple months after my father's death, as a way to get out of the house and do something productive to cope with my grieving, since drinking 5-7 beers a day wasn't cutting it. I bought a Marin 'Bobcat Trail' from my LBS and rode anywhere from 15 to 50 miles a week when I could spare time between work and school. I fell slightly out of it the following summer due to back problems that become worse in hot weather (we have terrible summers).
Then, in October of 2006, I got sized up and ended up buying a Bright Orange Trek 1000 SL, I had never thought I would ever buy a road bike. We have extremely hot summers here, so my "season" is October - May, but I still get out as much as I can. I have clocked about 400 miles on this bike, and have enjoyed every one of them.
Now I am becoming more regimented about it, and aim to ride a bare minimum of 5 miles in daily. I would love to commute solely by bike, and do so to work, but my classes are 22.3 miles from my house, and that is by freeway. I figured out the safest route (less busy roads, dodging the questionable neighborhoods, since I would have to ride in the dark) would be 24.2 miles, which I would do if I didn't get out of class at 8PM.
I am genuinely jealous of those of you who live in more bike/commuter friendly cities, and hope to move to either Portland or San Diego once I finish school. Then I just might be able to rid myself of a car and all the ridiculous costs attached to one.
I look forward to learning more and hope to be able to give back to the community in some way, if not at least by reducing my carbon footprint and helping my IRL acquaintances lean towards a less auto-dependant lifestyle.