Let me start by saying that I'm full time Military and any until recently I was ashamed of the way I looked in my uniform. I had reached a rank that required me to spend the greatest portion of my time behind a desk I simply let myself go. Now by other peoples standard I would not have been considered obese but I was not happy with myself. I did the absolute minimum I needed to to get by the physical fitness requirements and that was it. I simply had no motivation to do anything about getting into shape.
I have had 2 road bikes in the past that have gone terribly underused mainly because I was fat and lazy (honesty often hurts). I purchased the bikes because I love riding (have ever since I was a kid) and thought that they would be a great way to get into shape. The problem is that I think you have to be motivated to actually want to get into, and stay in shape, for that to actually work. Flash forward a few years and I find myself in Afghanistan. I started getting incredible headaches and decided to go to the Doctor about them. Come to find out that my blood pressure was high (a trait that runs in my family) at 160/105 and the Doctor gave me a choice, he told me that I could go on medication, or I could exercise and change my diet and check back in a month and see how things went (Oh by the way I turned 40 about a week later)... I decided that I didn't have anything to loose by trying to go to the gym, so off I went. At first I simply got on the treadmill and ran, well I sort of ran, you see I could only jog for about 3-5 minutes before I was so winded that I had to walk (I was a 6000+ feet of elevation mind you), but I stuck with it and eventually not only began to really enjoy running I looked forward to it and got really bummed when I couldn't go. Around the same time I made a conscious effort to start eating better and I cut caffein completely out of my diet. After a month my BP was a little better so I decided to keep at it. One good thing happened though, my headaches went completely away.
It wasn't long before my runs dramatically improved and weight started falling off of me. At one point an acquaintance came up to me and asked me if I was sick because I had lost so much weight.
I some point, remembering my love for cycling I started spinning. I got ahold of the Sufferfest video series and went to town I have even done a few mini biathlons (at least that's what I call them) where I spin for an hour then hop straight onto a treadmill and run for a minimum of 5K.
No I'm sure you all didn't want to hear my life story, but if you read this far I thank you (I'm very proud of my accomplishments). After all that, the point... I will be heading home from Afghanistan shortly and as a reward for my work I am getting me my dream bike. I am ordering a Pinarrello Dogma 65.1 Think 2 with Super Record EPS. Now I know I am not a pro (obvious from the above) but I think the bike is awesome and it's what I want... and my wife said I could have it ;-)
I will need some help deciding on some of the components for the bike but I'll start another tread for that.
Thanks to all,