Road Biking

I recently rode my first century ride, Ride around the Buttes in Yuba City. It was mostly flat which was a good thing. Had a little muscle damage in my right leg but managed to finish in 6 hours. Plan to do another in late spring when I'm in better shape.

A friend convinced me that a road bike would improve my climbing when mountain biking. He was right. It has been quite a learning experience going from mountain biking to road biking. To me road biking is infinitely more dangerous than mountain biking. It is much more convenient though.

There are two 30 mile loops and two 50 mile loops that start and finish at my house. All require less than 2 miles (out and back) of riding through town. The 30's are about half flat - half hills. I'm not sure how much climbing is involved but there is definitely climbing involved. The 50's have the same amount of flats as the 30's but the rest is climbing, lots of climbing.

For me climbing on a road bike is much easier than a mountain bike due to the fact the mountain bike requires much more energy for balance. Riding uphill through rocks and roots is taxing on the whole body. Riding up a flat paved hill is taxing on the legs and lungs.

When mountain biking you don't have to worry about crazy drivers other than the ones you have to deal with while driving to and from the ride. I don't know if I'll ever get comfortable with the way some drivers treat bikers. Some seem to try to get as close as possible when passing. Others are just plain rude, honking and yelling as they pass. Luckily they are few and far between. I'm happy to say that most are very polite and understand that they are driving a lethal weapon.

For the price the Trek 5200 is hard to beat. So far I haven't had any real problems with it that weren't my own doing like not lubing the chain enough. The saddle is a Selle Italia Era and so far I'm tolerating it. Some days I don't notice it and on others it sucks. Anybody want to buy it? :-) The other thing that bothers me is the heart monitor I bought on eBay. It doesn't work if there are power lines nearby. On the other hand the Shimano Flight Deck system is the best. It's great to be able to change modes without taking my hands off the hoods.

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