I'm a teenager who recently developed patellofemoral syndrome - which means I am basically in constant pain in the knee area. I also have flat feet and very weak legs.
I started biking to increase my strength, to stay fit, and to be alone recently, although I've biked on/off all my life.
I can pretty much only go to the park, bike around there, and come back home because it's dangerous to go farther, or bike at night.
I currently have aMt. Fury Roadmaster, a cheap bike, I know. However, if I get serious about biking, I can probably upgrade. I also own no helmet or other equipment than my bike. I bike around in a pair of Ked's and wear headphones instead of a helmet.
I want to get serious about biking because it will help me with my pain, get me more fit, make me feel better, and allow me to be alone. I just don't know if I'm approaching it the right way.
In around 45 minutes or so - I can do around 3 - 3.5 miles, with water breaks every .4 mile and decreased energy as I go onwards, with various hills and slopes. But, I find my capabilities are very low, as this is how far I can go. I hope to ride to school (5.6 miles; have only 30 minutes to really get there) someday, maybe in 1.5 years or so, and maybe someday take biking as an alternative to cars.
Is there anything I can do to increase my speed, stamina, and capabilities - whether it's eating and fuel, getting a new bike, or just training myself? Thanks.