I'm 44 and newly back into cycling after a couple decades. Half a dozen rides on my new road bike and I'm making progress VERY slowly. I'm not fat, but out of condition, about ten pounds over where I'd like to be (179 pounds and 5'8" with a stocky build). Diet is OK. I have hills, and I mean hills. I live half way up the death climb our local bike club uses on occasion. No matter which way I go, I have some significant climbs to get back. The shortest route back to my road is almost 3/4 mile very steeply graded and I need my easiest gear in my triple to keep it going, and I have to stop twice or I can't make it. I felt awful until I saw a neighbor, who rides daily and is in much better shape, stop halfway (I was driving home). So my question is, seeing that I'm getting frustrated, do I keep grinding it out (my heart rate screams and I get seriously out of breath working so hard) and try to get stronger, or take my bike to flatter terrain to get miles under my belt? He asked me to ride with him, but he's coming back from a 30 mile ride when he dies on that hill, I only make it six miles max due to the type of terrain. I'm hoping losing ten pounds will help me out too. Thanks.