Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: San Angelo, TX
Bikes: Volae Team, '76 Motobecane Grand Jubile, Priority Eight
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I had back surgery about 18 years ago, with pretty much the same results. Excruciating pain was gone, but chronic pain persisted. It may take you a while to figure out what activities will aggravate your pain and what activities are fine. I agree with above posters that you need to find the bike fit that works for you. Once you have a bike, you may need to adjust the handlebar position fore/aft and up/down as you ride more and find what works. Talk to the bike shop about that before the purchase. Your back is unique, and you'll have to discover what works.
I'm mostly pain-free now, and continuing to find more things I can do. Today, I rode a century, my 4th of the year. Actually it was 120 miles because I rode to/from the event.
Good luck and happy cycling.