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How did you get into cycling?

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Road Cycling It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle. -- Ernest Hemingway

How did you get into cycling?

Old 06-27-20, 05:04 PM
  #26  
freeranger
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
My parents bought me a tricycle. The rest is history.
Same--stopped for a bit, started riding motorcycles, then mtn.biking became popular, started riding again-on mtn.bike trails, and rail-trails when MD and PA started building them. Was almost all off-road until around 14 years ago when I bought the LeMond.
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Old 06-27-20, 05:08 PM
  #27  
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Before my freshman year of high school, we moved from the flat suburbs to a hilly area with our house at about 400ft. School to home was about 2 miles, with 1 mile flat and 1 mile of climbing. I quickly learned the limitations of my department store bike, the importance of shifting and gearing in the hills, and eventually upgraded to a Bianchi Brava I picked up from the classifieds. I even started to do some recreational riding in the area.

Riding became less frequent after I got my drivers license, went off to college, work/marriage/kids/etc. But some friends started organizing group rides / coffee shop socials, my kids got older and more independent, and I've been riding regularly ever since.
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Old 06-27-20, 05:47 PM
  #28  
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I was riding bikes since Im 3 years old

wanted to get into competition at 16 and cycling was my favourite sport
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Old 06-27-20, 06:52 PM
  #29  
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As a kid, it was just utilitarian.
Then in college (UC Santa Cruz) all my friends were hard core cyclists. They taught me to commute to school on bike, grocery shopping on bike, laundry mat on bike. Everything. t was hard core cycling rain or shine. I've been hooked ever since.
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Old 06-27-20, 07:20 PM
  #30  
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I'm 40, started riding at late 33 years, I weighed 225 and wanted to get back into shape, but running resulted in lots of nagging injuries, we moved somewhere near a paved bike path and had a mongoose mtb I had bought when I was 21 and had practically zero use. It was dual suspension and it was a slog to ride on pavement, so got a hybrid, and in January of 2014 a coworker offered me a 1995 raleigh with 8 speed 105 for $100, which was a steal. Within a year of riding I had done a century, went down to 155lbs and did my first road race (not well, but I was there!). Since then I've dabbled in some road racing, got into doing CX racing a lot more, completed a 150mile gravel event, climbed over 12000ft in a single ride in Portugal, and have ridden with some really nice people in my community.

As with a lot of people who discover cycling in adulthood, I wish I had had more exposure to road cycling as a youth because my hometown is so close to some really great riding that I could have spent hours doing instead of just riding around the neighborhood and goofing around with friends (we did play lots of sports so I was active but I could have been much more active with cycling)

Nowadays I do just about all of my riding indoors, with a smart trainer and the quality of workouts I just really get a lot out of it. I'm itching to go out on some epic rides, but I try and have some time for workouts and trying to get out with my 9 y/o for 1-2hrs to complement my indoor training.
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Old 06-27-20, 11:46 PM
  #31  
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I got fat.

I bought a bike to get unfat. It worked. I got quite fit.

I stopped riding after a few years. I got fat again, so I'm back on it. I need to stay with it this time. I'm to old to be gaining and losing this much weight repeatedly.
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Old 06-28-20, 07:29 AM
  #32  
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Rode as a kid including some serious hill climbing on my paper route. Didn't own a car until I was 26. Out for a ride one day for fun in college on my Raleigh SC and guys from Wolverine-Schwinn who went to the same college caught me and suggested I take up more serious riding. Had a Paramount for a while and raced a bit but never really got into it. Bought myself a Masi GC with some of my money and the college graduation gift money I got in 1976. Just sold that last year. Now I ride an F8 with an F12 on order.

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Old 06-28-20, 09:00 AM
  #33  
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Had some bicycles when I was small and late youth but never had many friends to cycle with. Came and went in phases. Until about 15 years ago me and a close friend rented bikes, we got really hooked and bought ourselves cheap market bikes to cycle around the city. Me more often because I used to to ride to football games. Changed to hybrid but my friend slowly stop and I had to learn to cycle alone again. Got used to it and converted the bike to road setup. At this time I refused to wear anything lycra like I'm some kinda poser pro, just normal clothes. But because I love to push myself I realized getting aero is important. But it came in stages, from spd shoes to tops to tights. All these slow changes during the many years until I became the roadie in full lycra I once dislike. But I still don't own stuff like the rainbow jersey or team kits. Instead wearing something more plain attire.

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Old 06-28-20, 12:00 PM
  #34  
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Fat & lazy

FAT-Lazy-Overweight and drinking to much beer and eating Baconator's.....!
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Old 06-28-20, 12:33 PM
  #35  
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I think I got my first bike when I was around seven. Been cycling ever since. I'm now 72.
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Old 06-28-20, 12:48 PM
  #36  
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I got my first bike as a very young child. Progressed from kids bikes to BMX for years, then got my first serious road bike at 18 and got into racing the same year - my best friend wanted me to, he in turn was friends with someone whose older brother was a Professional. Got into MTB XC last year at 50, still do road bike too. I think as a child, teen and into my late twenties, early thirties I cycled nearly every day, if not every day. I'm back to that now.
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Old 06-28-20, 08:22 PM
  #37  
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Was a runner, wanted to start doing triathlon and needed an excuse to buy a road bike.
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Old 06-28-20, 11:24 PM
  #38  
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I needed transportation to and from my first duty station after boot camp. Couldn't afford a car. So I bought a then-new 1976 Motobecane. Started riding just for the 20 mile round trip commute. I disliked running but still had to do the twice-a-year physical fitness test, so riding helped.

Next thing I knew I was hooked -- racing a few crits and time trials, long distance rides with a club. I was never any good at racing but had fun.

I quit riding for 30 years after the service. Started riding again in 2015. Took forever to get back into shape. Hooked again.
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Old 06-28-20, 11:36 PM
  #39  
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David Blase was my high school biology teacher. He was kind of odd, rode a bike to school and wore knickers. He told some crazy bike stories. He organized a bike race every year at the school called the little 500, like the one at IU. My senior year we led the first half of the race, ended up second. Definitely inspired me to stick with cycling.

They made a movie based on his stories, called Breaking Away. He was Dave, obviously.
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Old 06-29-20, 07:01 AM
  #40  
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I vaguely remember having a neon green colored bike with detachable training wheels as a kid. I wasn't particularly obsessed with it but it was something I occasionally did. At a certain point, I stopped riding around my preteen years once I grew out of it.
A few years ago, I saw a friend hop on a bikeshare (a Citibike as I live in New York) after a work meeting and I remembered being super impressed at how easily she just jumped on and sped away. It would be another 2-3 years later when I decided to try it myself. I committed to a membership and took the 45lb+ bike along the waterfront path and it was pretty horrifying but exhilarating and having not rode a bike in 10+ years save a rickety $100 Craigslist bike I bought in grad school a few years before that I rode all of 3 times before selling it to a friend, it took a little re-adjusting but as they say, like riding a bike.

A year or year and a half later I bought a Brompton (as a friend advocated for one) and I rode that thing for 2-3 years (I also learned a lot of things to avoid on it as I've had plenty of literal scrapes on it) but that and Citibikes got me comfortable with riding in the city. I found an old Ti frame at a jumble sale and built it up to be a fixie (since I was curious) but very quickly that got stolen. When building that Ti bike, I ended up watching a lot of how-to videos and also encountered a lot of road cycling videos which got me curious. I quickly became tired of hauling my bikes up my walkup (I also briefly had an ebike which I later sold) and the Ti bike was oddly never that light anyway. I ended up getting a road bike and have never looked back.

I was in my early 30s and while not fat, I was never particularly fit. Nothing interested me athletically and I hated running or anything cardio. I quit gym class as soon as I could and I always associated physical education with humiliation and discomfort. Somehow 20 years later, cycling got me.
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Old 06-29-20, 09:10 AM
  #41  
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Rode a mountain bike around rural back roads as a preteen to meet up with friends, but once driving age hit, I didn't ride a bike again until 28 years old. At 28 in 2008, I was laid off, fat, lazy, depressed, drinker, smoker, etc. and hit 200lbs for the first time in my life. That woke me up and I bought a mountain bike to turn things around, and was hooked from day one. Purchased my first road bike a few months after that. My wallet hasn't been fat ever since, but neither have I.
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Old 06-29-20, 03:32 PM
  #42  
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It all started around 1977 when I saw my first true bmx race bike. It was a '76 Redline square back that my friends brother had. The thing was a boat anchor but man did it look nice. Nickel plated frame and fork with motomags. I thought it was the coolest bike ever. Since then I had several bmx bikes, Mongoose, Diamond back, GT. Then I discovered girls and cars. I always had cycling in my blood though. In college when the mountain bike craze was starting I bought a Answer Manitou FS and that was a cool bike but it got stolen out of my garage. Then I bought a Yeti ARC. Then a few years later after I got married I realized I was getting fat so I looked into road bikes. I then bought a Cannondale but never really got into it so I then sold it. I then had kids and rediscovered bmx racing again and started that up again. I got more enjoyment watching my kids race then actually racing myself. I then decided to give road bikes a try again since my boomer neighbors are always riding. Bought myself a BH Ultralight RC and I have not looked back since. I sometimes go with my boomer neighbors or I will go by my self. Either way I am enjoying it a lot. I still go to the bmx track with my kids and ride the 24" cruiser class with all the other old farts who used to race back in the day.
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Old 06-29-20, 08:29 PM
  #43  
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Got suspended from the bus for 10 days when I was in 8th grade, and my parents weren't the sort of chowderheads who'd reward their kid with a car ride for misbehaving. It was 7 miles each way (I was a rural kid) and I quickly discovered I could cover the distance in about a 1/2 hr while the bus took more more than an hour each way. When the suspension was lifted, I kept riding.

Distances kept expanding as I grew older -- I had more than 20 miles each way for a decade. But you'd be amazed how little time you save by driving even for that. That base I built while cycling got me into distance and led me to become a multisport outdoorsman. So everything that I have now that I love is because my parents thought I needed to learn a lesson.
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Old 06-30-20, 09:56 AM
  #44  
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From a very young age I rode a bike. I was the kid in 8th grade that talked about bikes all the time. Never really had a high end bike and was always dreaming.


I have a sister that is two years older than me. In HS she had boyfriends galore, one of them worked in a bike shop. He talked me into entering a race with him. This was an 18.5 mile race, year about 1977. At the time my bike was a 3 speed so my sisters boyfriend loaned me a bike. It was a 10 speed missing the inner chain ring so 5 speed but it did have sew-ups and toe clips. He brought the bike over the day before so I could ride it and I got a flat. He was pissed at me for this but he handed me a new tire.


At the race he was in a group before me so he asked me to hold him upright which I did. Of course I never raced before and wasn't even expecting to even finish so I didn't have anyone to get advice from never mind hold me up before the starting gun. AlI I remember is that once the race started I cranked and cranked and never stopped cranking until the finish. That's all I remember.


After all the racers were finished they called out the numbers of the winners. I remember thinking at the time the teams were where were the fastest rider were. Once they finished announcing the winning teams next came the individuals. One of the kids I knew from school had his number called for 2nd. This really made my sisters boyfriend mad. Then they called out the numbers for 3rd then 4th. When the got to 5th (the last to receive a trophy) there was no response to the number, so they called it again. Still no response, then the announcer clearly annoyed called it again. I thought there was a certain ring to the number so I asked my sister to check the number pinned to the back of my t shirt. I remember being asked by a reporter how old I was and I told him 14. There were probably 2000 riders in this race and I got 5th place individual on a borrowed bike.


I rode and rode until college then rode for about 6 years before kids. When I restarted a year+ ago I was like a beginner. I'm putting in more miles now than I ever dreamed I would at any time previous.
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Old 06-30-20, 11:11 AM
  #45  
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Extended visit with my wife's in-laws. There was one bike. 'Nuf said.
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Old 06-30-20, 11:13 AM
  #46  
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Always rode a bike - for a child it was freedom. I'm pretty sure I remember the first time riding with no trainer wheels - along the sidewalk, drifted into a wall and split my scalp - much blood and wailing. Various fat-tired kids bikes, only vaguely recalled. I do remember learning to ride with no hands, and cruising along one day, feeling like the sh1t, and a passing Guard (Irish cop) pulled me over and gave me a good yelling. Folks bought me a 5sp drop-barred bike when I was ~11, replaced it with a Campag-equipped Viking (short-lived Northern Irish brand) ~14. My next-door neighbor, who was a former amateur racer, got me interested in "proper" racing bikes. When they moved back to England and I spent summers over there, painting houses etc, I built a Nuovo Record-equipped Hetchins out of parts from his garage - this became my "summer bike" - when I wasn't painting, I was putting in miles throughout the Berkshire countryside. Fast forward to grad school, and when the RD hanger of my Peugeot broke, I didn't have the funds to repair it, so I parked it in the shed where is slowly become one with the earth. In '95, in Boston, I decided to do the '96 Boston-NY AIDS Ride, so I built up a road bike (De Bernardi with Campag Athena 8sp) over the winter and started training in the spring. Did the Ride (awesome, btw), kept training and never looked back. So, with the occasional short hiatus, I've been riding bikes, or messing with bikes, for about the last 50 years. The bikes have just been getting more expensive...
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