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What got you into cycling?

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What got you into cycling?

Old 10-05-20, 12:47 PM
  #76  
dombey19
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Born to Ride

My mother took a job working for a Schwinn distributor. When I was 13 I would help with inventory in the warehouse during the summer. I stayed on through high school, college, and left when I completed my Master's degree. You could not work go to work daily, surrounded by hundreds and hundreds of what today are classic Schwinn bikes---Corvette, Sting Ray, Varsity, Continental, Paramount---and not become a cyclist. I unloaded many, many boxcars of new Schwinns, and slung thousands and thousands of tires. I still remember many of the original part numbers, and, yes, I have a mint Paramount hanging in my garage.
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Old 10-05-20, 01:22 PM
  #77  
Kabuki12
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When I was a little pup , my family had no car so I learned to ride quite young. I think I started with a Sting Ray type bike that I cobled together out of bits that were given to me. The frame was a Murray if I remember right. By the time I hit high school I had a ten speed(sort of) it was a Schwinn Varsity in Root Beer brown. I thought I was king on that bike just cruising around Oxnard in the sixties and occasionally out to my sister's house about 12 miles away. It was freedom for us kids back then . Sometime after graduating high school my friend and I decided to actually ride to Santa Barbara which was the furthest we ever ventured from home, about 42 miles or so. He had a Continental which was a little better than my Varsity. When we got to Santa Barbara , we were spent! Those damn heavy bikes just were not meant for the type of cycling we were starting to want to do. I gave my Varsity away sometime after that and bought my first light weight bike a Kabuki Diamond Formula and started really cycling. I've been doing it ever since.
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Old 10-05-20, 01:31 PM
  #78  
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In late Jr. High and early high school (1986-88) I worked in a popular bike shop during the heyday of freestyle bmx era (think Rad!), and I got a great at-cost deal on a new Shogun 10sp, which was my pride and joy, as well as saving up part-by-part for a really expensive freestyle bike, a Skyway Streetbeat with all the bells and whistles. Both bikes were WAY above my ability level but I HAD to have them. Eventually I got a little older and aged out of the bike scene as my friends got cars, and the girls followed. Fast forward 25 years, to an older, much fatter version of myself with bad back pain that I thought had ruined any chance of me being athletic again, and with my youngest child moving out for college, and having just gotten a job only 9 miles from home, via New England country roads. So in 2013 I decided one day, on a whim, to go to the shed and take out a dusty 10 yr old Schwinn road bike someone had given to me when they were moving, to see how it felt. To my surprise, my back felt great afterwards, and after commuting a few times to work, decided to get a new entry level hybrid worthy of a rack and panniers (still being used as my main commuter to this day). And then continued to ride 5-7 days a week, year round, even in the coldest of colds. Then came a gently used "real" Trek road bike, followed by 10,000 miles, and 70 lbs of weight loss, followed by another "really real" carbon Di2 endurance road bike and another 20,000 miles, including a 24 hour solo ride (325 miles), and then a move to Colorado and a full squish mtb that ceases to put a massive smile on my face, every time. Unfortunately followed by getting and beating Stage 4 Lung Cancer 12 months ago, but which hasn't stopped me from tallying 3,000 miles in 2020, so far!
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Old 10-05-20, 01:48 PM
  #79  
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when I was 10, we moved to a new town in Texas
our house was on the edge of civilization and the neighborhood under development
there were many kids that would ride BMX bikes around and dirt bikes in the fields behind my house
my folks got me a BMX bike, and with the neighborhood kids, we built a BMX track on one of the undeveloped lots
I used my BMX bike to deliver newspapers for the next several years and bought myself a motocross bike w my earnings
I started racing both BMX and motocross and continued for many years
In college, I got a road bike and raced for the university, and got my first fully rigid mountain bike
After college, I started racing XC and DH MTB for about ten years, while also riding road for training purposes
Since, I've stopped racing, but ride both road and MTB as much as I can, and hope to do so ... until I physically can't
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Old 10-05-20, 02:56 PM
  #80  
stephr1
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Got <back> into cycling because of a sciatic nerve injury I sustained playing competitive volleyball. I had to give up all my high impact sports: V-ball, hiking, backpacking, downhill skiing (also had to practically give up climbing my stairs up from my garage when the pain was so bad (ugh Miracles do happen, tho. Fastforward about 15 years and, due to an accident on my bike (my Darwiness), I must have reshifted my hip area and the sciatic problem disappeared (occasional soreness when I wake up in the morning but a lot of that may be due to age - 67+). Never gave up riding, tho. Just started bringing back some of the high impact stuff (coaching kids' basketball, hiking, etc.). In fact, if I don't get out for my sunrise ride 3x a week, I feel I'm not complete.
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Old 10-05-20, 03:44 PM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
Rather than resuscitating an old thread where respondents may have moved on (so to speak) decided to start anew...

Always interesting hearing how people become interested in their hobbies, relationships (but we aren’t going there) and life choices.

To be more precise, what got you into being a “serious” or humorous cyclist doing distance rides, becoming competitive, yada yada? Not talking about your Big Wheel, paper bike, or first Huffy unless you still ride those.


My story. Being “blessed” with a fair amount of nervous energy, I always tried to reduce it through distance running. Played soccer and ran track in HS, ran recreationally all through college years to the point of exhaustion to reduce that energy or anxiety or whatever. After 10 years of running I kept injuring myself and just ran from one injury to the next. A neighbor who was a triathlete suggested trying a bike for cross training. So I did that for a few years and really enjoyed the cycling component but not so much the running, even though the injuries were less. Eventually I transitioned about 80% cycling and then ran through the rainy months but cycled on group rides so I could feel good about not being a bad weather wus. Got tired of squishy shoes, cold hands, poor thermo regulation and bike cleaning and Bought a trainer. So I credit nervous energy (still got it), running injuries and my over achieving neighbor.
I had become totally sedentary. My doctor told me I better start excercising. I remembered that when i was younger (I'm 69 now) I like riding a bike, so I bought one.
Found that I loved it,and have been at it for 21 years now.
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Old 10-05-20, 09:09 PM
  #82  
gorillimo
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I ruptured an Achilles tendon. When they cut the cast off, the orthopod told me to write writeI ruptured an Achilles tendon. When they cut the cast off, the orthopod told me to write a bike for rehab. There was an old Varsity Abandoned in the apartments I was living in. I oiled it up, pumped up the tires and started this whole journey. That was 40 plus years ago. It’s been a great ride!
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Old 10-07-20, 06:24 PM
  #83  
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Originally Posted by dombey19 View Post
My mother took a job working for a Schwinn distributor. When I was 13 I would help with inventory in the warehouse during the summer. I stayed on through high school, college, and left when I completed my Master's degree. You could not work go to work daily, surrounded by hundreds and hundreds of what today are classic Schwinn bikes---Corvette, Sting Ray, Varsity, Continental, Paramount---and not become a cyclist. I unloaded many, many boxcars of new Schwinns, and slung thousands and thousands of tires. I still remember many of the original part numbers, and, yes, I have a mint Paramount hanging in my garage.
Ha! Part numbers? Same here:
22900100100 Schrader 26" tube
22900100310 Presta 26" tube
100... bikes
227... tires
310... clothing
(Man oh man did I HATE doing inventory. But it taught me 10-key which is nice.)

Jesus, why do I still retain all these SKUs in my head? Total waste of limited cranial capacity!
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Old 10-07-20, 06:34 PM
  #84  
LV2TNDM
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Originally Posted by gorillimo View Post
I ruptured an Achilles tendon. When they cut the cast off, the orthopod told me to write writeI ruptured an Achilles tendon. When they cut the cast off, the orthopod told me to write a bike for rehab. There was an old Varsity Abandoned in the apartments I was living in. I oiled it up, pumped up the tires and started this whole journey. That was 40 plus years ago. It’s been a great ride!
YIKES! That's been a big fear of mine for about the last 10 years or so. About 15 years ago I started hearing Achilles tendon rupture stories from friends and acquaintances. I was coaching soccer at the time and not in the best shape. Scrimmaging with the kids was SO fun but I was seriously concerned about blowing out an Achilles or knee. So I decided to keep up the riding and add some weights to the routine (calf raises, among others). Was in OK shape, but nothing like I SHOULD have been in.

I've always felt that my overall knee and tendon health for 55 years is because of my continued cycling through high school and adulthood. (I didn't abandon my bike at 16 like so many friends.) And I think riding a bicycle to soccer practice is something that should probably be mandatory! Talk about the PERFECT warm up and workout for cycling. All kids should do this. I'll never forget listening to three orthopedic surgeons on public radio talking about knee health and recovery. All three said, "Cycling!" as their main go-to for knee injury recovery and health maintenance.

Then I tore a calf muscle last March two weeks after a DVT diagnosis. Oops! Right when Covid was ramping up. Lame. Fell off the riding wagon a bit there. And who knows if there's a connection to Covid-19 with blood clotting and all. Never had any symptoms. Haven't been tested for either the virus or antibodies. Would be curious to at some point. (Ironically, when being tested 15 years ago for worries about Guillen-Barre Syndrome, my titer test results revealed I had Mono in college. Sickest I've ever been, yet the doctor opined I "got two really bad colds in a row" and never tested me. Luckily I was in great shape (thanks mountain bike) and recovered just fine. Didn't suffer months of malaise like so many other Mono sufferers.

Glad to say I'm back 100%. Rode the unicycle for a couple of hours yesterday. Live to ride!
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Old 10-07-20, 06:37 PM
  #85  
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In the summer of 2012, my wife decided she wanted us to get bikes. I had no road a bike for close to 20 years. We went to Big5, a local sporting goods stores and bought two bikes. Mine was a Kent. It was way to small and not made very well, but oved it. I was riding the bike simply for the pleasure of riding a bike. It didn't take long for me to realize that the bike was too small, so after six months I went to our neighborhood bike store and purchased a Giant Cypress. That really got me hooked. I started riding longer and got up to about 20 miles. After four years, I wanted something a bit more aggressive so I got a Giant Escape. Since March, I am averaging over 170 miles per week. It helps that I don't have to drive to work as I am working from home. This allows me to spend more time on my bike on my pre-dawn rides.
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Old 10-07-20, 08:48 PM
  #86  
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The short version: working in a bike shop when I was a teenager.

I grew up in the 1960's and came of age in the 70's. I hit the 70's cycling resurgence right on time. It was the second or third "Golden Age" of cycling. I was working at a gas station when I was in high school. Made little money and wanted a better job.

Went in to the local bike shop, "Al's Bike Shop" in Cleveland Heights Ohio. I asked for a job and Al said, "I don't have an opening right now but I will in a few months". I replied, "I don't need a job in a few months, I need one now". Al, looked at me, paused for a good 10 seconds, saw I wasn't backing down and said, "Be here after school tomorrow".

I got all the nasty stuff to do for the first few months. Then I was allowed to assemble coaster brake bikes, then Raleigh 3-speeds, then "10 speeds", then got to repair bikes after working there for about a year. I bought a 1974 Raleigh Super Sport (the year they came with the Huret Jubilee rear derailleur). At 17 I was riding that Super Sport 20 or 30 miles out of town almost every weekend. That started the obsession that continues today. I'm 62 now.
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Old 10-07-20, 09:42 PM
  #87  
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Originally Posted by DorkDisk View Post
The clothing, definitely the tights.
about 20 years ago a group of 6 other guys and I in their 40s were doing an urban hill climbing evening ride. We passed a couple of 20 something year old females the yelled after us, Nice butts guys! We all laughed. Made our ride.
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Old 10-08-20, 02:33 PM
  #88  
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Hi folks,
At my age it’s hard to remember what or when. I got my first bike, a JC Higgins with 24 inch wheels at 9 or 10. Moved up 26 inch wheels a couple of years later. For Christmas when I was in the 8th grade, I got an Evans three speed. As a normal male teenager, my focus changed to cars when I got my learners permit. So, bikes went on the back burner for a while. In college I got a used Schwinn Continental to ride with friends & family. This led to doing centuries and commuting. My bikes have evolved over time. Currently, I’m focused on vintage English bikes. Also have a modern CX bike and a Paramount 50th Anniversary Edition. Still riding and enjoying it.
Cheers,
Van
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Old 10-08-20, 03:00 PM
  #89  
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OK, I haven't been following along, but at least this is one thread where no none else will have made the same comment already ...

I got a late start - did not learn to ride a bike until I was in 3rd or 4th grade. I'm sure my mother was terrified that I'd either get killed, or just get on the bike and never come back.

Both things happened, more or less. First bike was the Schwinn Speedster - at least she didn't get me a Huffy. All the cool kids had Sting-Rays with banana seats, etc., but no, I had to have the dorky 24-inch wheel bike ...which I then realized was way faster than a Sting-Ray. Got hit by a car in 7th grade - I'd be short a few fingers right now, but somehow my hands left the handlebar. The right side was bent up at a right-angle. So I suspect it took a bit of force to do that. Had a scrape on my head and shoulder, but came out OK. Mom replaced the Speedster with a green (Collegiate? Suburban?) that had five speeds! Started riding that the 3 miles to school for a couple of years, but then cars beckoned.

Went off to college, realized that a bike would be really good for getting around. Met new friends, one of whom was a bike geek and occasional racer. ("You must learn to sprint!") That's when I discovered that you could do things like 20-mile rides, and tours. Just kind of kept going with it, getting better bikes and riding more. Now it's a lifestyle.
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Old 10-08-20, 03:18 PM
  #90  
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I must have caught the bug from my mom. She had an old Schwinn Breeze with a shopping basket on the front and a kiddie carrier on the back. Also, we were a 1-car family. So I remember riding on various errands around town. To this day, the "tick tick tick" of a Sturmey Archer hub still brings back memories, and I have those hubs on a couple of my bikes.

I think I liked the mechanical aspect of it, plus just the freedom of being able to go out on my own and do things. Driving the family car meant haggling with everybody else who needed to use it. I didn't get a car until I was halfway through college.

I'm still not a competitive rider, but enjoy using a bike to get around town and go on moderate weekend rides. And I still love tinkering with old bikes.
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Old 10-09-20, 07:31 PM
  #91  
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Originally Posted by gear64 View Post
Love at first flight around 6. It was my primary mode of transportation through college. Then I've continued to enjoy it through adulthood. I've never taken it seriously, it's just a link to my inner child.

Love at first flight at 4. Took me half a day, many band-aids, gravel and a bit of blood to actually get the "First Flight" to happen. I've been doing it every since.


One thing I've learned, If you take any single form of cycling "Seriously", you spend way, way too much money and it's not nearly as fun.


Just good ole' ridin', take it as it comes, whether it's figure-8s, or forty miles. Strap on a bedroll and go for weeks or just an afternoon with the wife, pullin' grandkids in a trailer then teaching them to do it on their own. Just good ole' FUN ridin'.


I've been doing it for 56 years and don't plan to stop anytime soon.
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Old 10-10-20, 03:21 AM
  #92  
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some nice and inspiring stories here...
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Old 01-24-21, 06:05 PM
  #93  
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BMX Action Trick Team.
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Old 01-25-21, 07:52 AM
  #94  
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Simple answer, riding my trike was fun when I was 3, and riding a bike to school was faster and easier than walking.

Then as an adult, cycling is again fun, and good exercise.
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Old 01-25-21, 03:04 PM
  #95  
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Moving to Switzerland from a large city. I hated cycling there, hell in the traffic. Moved and got a bike and cycled everywhere there, up the hill to classes or to and back from the town center, even at nights half drunk that was no issue there was so little traffic. I didn't even have a public transportation pass at first. Then after some years a family member suggested I buy a proper road bike. Stayed mostly casual summer activity for some time, but then two years ago I just decided to take it more seriously, started reading up about training and that got me hooked. I make my own cycling plans now, got a powermeter, and track my progress. And getting fitter meant I can really enjoy cycling up the passes now and I made a list of the ones I want to do in the near future. For this year it is Stelvio and a lovely round trip near St. Moritz across Albula and Julier.
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Old 01-25-21, 03:47 PM
  #96  
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Thanks to generous parents, I got to grow up with a Schwinn Typhoon, then a Stingray Fastback, and then a Varsity. Started commuting to school on a Nishiki International. Always enjoyed the outdoors but was never an athlete nor good at team sports. Realized that cycling fit my personality and allowed me to stay fit, explore the outdoors, and occasionally socialize with other cyclists.
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Old 01-25-21, 04:47 PM
  #97  
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
Rather than resuscitating an old thread where respondents may have moved on (so to speak) decided to start anew...

Always interesting hearing how people become interested in their hobbies, relationships (but we aren’t going there) and life choices.

To be more precise, what got you into being a “serious” or humorous cyclist doing distance rides, becoming competitive, yada yada? Not talking about your Big Wheel, paper bike, or first Huffy unless you still ride those.


My story. Being “blessed” with a fair amount of nervous energy, I always tried to reduce it through distance running. Played soccer and ran track in HS, ran recreationally all through college years to the point of exhaustion to reduce that energy or anxiety or whatever. After 10 years of running I kept injuring myself and just ran from one injury to the next. A neighbor who was a triathlete suggested trying a bike for cross training. So I did that for a few years and really enjoyed the cycling component but not so much the running, even though the injuries were less. Eventually I transitioned about 80% cycling and then ran through the rainy months but cycled on group rides so I could feel good about not being a bad weather wus. Got tired of squishy shoes, cold hands, poor thermo regulation and bike cleaning and Bought a trainer. So I credit nervous energy (still got it), running injuries and my over achieving neighbor.
took a try a college football after 2 years realized i sucked had my highschool graduation bike Univega began riding to stay fit..1986 was my awakening...
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Old 01-25-21, 04:56 PM
  #98  
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Basically I wanted to explore new places without spending a lot of money to get there.
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Old 01-26-21, 06:37 AM
  #99  
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It was the spandex..
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Old 01-26-21, 07:58 AM
  #100  
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Posts: 541

Bikes: Optima Baron LR, '14 Nishiki Maricopa,'87 Trek 330 Elance, '89 Miyata 1400, '85 Peugeot PGN10, '04 Fuji Ace, '06 Giant Rincon, '95 Giant Allegre, '83 Trek 620, '86 Schwinn High Sierra

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What got me into cycling?
Well, if you wanna go back to the beginning, I'd say I got into cycling at age 5-6, simply to explore my neighborhood and visit friends
As I got older, reached end of the neighborhood, and suddenly finding myself on the other end of town (Ft Wayne, IN). That town seemed to get smaller, Next thing I know, I'm hitting up nearby towns (started with a trip for huge jawbreakers at Souder's in Grabil, IN)
I moved closed to Detroit's airport in my late teens, discovered the I275 bike trail, and used that to discover all the metroparks, local towns, Hines drive, etc.
During my time in the USMC, I always looked forward to coming home on leave and riding my bike.
And as my kids were old enough for me to leave for a few hours, I picked up riding again, seemingly more every year.

So what got me into cycling? I really don't have an answer since I've been cycling since I can barely remember. I guess I've always been cycling. I still enjoy long rides in the warm sun, the feeling of discovering places new to me, and knowing I'm extending my life by keeping in shape at age 50 (hopefully).
friday1970 is offline  

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