I used to ride all the time as a kid on a Raleigh road bike and loved it. More recently I have been commuting and exploring with a mountain bike that I first bought during a year working in Cyprus. Brilliant. Today I stepped outside with a road bike for the first time since being a teen. I was very nervous, especially with the clipless pedals and possibility of dying at T-junctions, etc. What an amazing experience! It’s like riding a mustang after being on a donkey. I was so excited and happy, while being overcome with the sheer power of the bike beneath me and the need to become as lean and fit as possible in order to do her justice. After being an indoor Sufferlandrian since December 2019, here I am with a huge grin on my face after returning from my virgin bike ride.
So I wondered - can any of you relate to my experience, or remember your first time on a modern road bike and what it felt like?
@Liam Totally relatable. I rode a 30 year old busted up mountain bike as a commuter for years. Knowing nothing about bikes or bike repair the cables were so tight that it was essentially a single speed stuck mid cassette middle chainring. When the frame cracked at the chain stay I bought a new bike. It was 2013 and a hybrid. But, compared to what I had been enduring for years, it was fast and responsive and I literally took it everywhere. The smile on my face when first riding it could not be erased. THIS is how a bike is supposed to feel! The gears all worked, the tires rolled fast. I was in love. Took it from commuting to longer and longer distances and finished my first 100 mile ride on it that same year.
Fell upon a local club a couple years later and asked if I could join them on a ride. Their leader said sure, if you can keep up. 80 km later, still together the group was impressed. They let me ride with them on their regular club rides. Of course I began to covet a “real” road bike and finally landed on one in early 2016. Haven’t looked back since. The joy that cycling outside has brought can not be measured. Whether alone or group riding, it is liberating. Your post has brought all these feelings flooding right back. Stay upright (as much as you can). Ride smart. Stay safe.