Lots of great info here for you. Spend some time at your local bike shop (LBS)- visit more than one if you can - to get familiar with the types of bikes that are available and do some test drives on them.
A cyclocross bike is a more upright position than a pure road bike, since it needs to be able to handle a rougher terrain (in case you actually do decide to do 'cross). You might like it...
But defintely, even if you decide to go the craiglist route, go to the local bike shop first, test ride different bike, rent bikes at trails, and figure out (a) what you want to do and (b) what size bike you need.
I'm just posting to agree with most people here - figure out what you like to do and get a bike to fit. I like riding on the road so I have one of those.
If you don't know what you like, then, like DRC2205, I heartily recommend a Cross bike. It's a go anywhere, do anything bike - mine's my commute bike given that I have a roadbike already but it races well, happily goes long distance and loves playing on trails. Oh, and it likes cyclocross too!
I'd personally not get a hybrid. I don't like being too upright anyway but I test rode one last year and didn't really like it. Even less impressed was the DW - the "worst of both worlds" she dubbed it....
In God we trust, all others bring data. - W. Edwards Demings
If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise. -P.Z. Pearce
I also bought a trek 7.3 fx this spring and I love it - it is a hybrid - but I don't think it would do well on rough trails mountain biking. It is great on bike trails both paved and crushed limestone. It is lightweight and comes in several sizes for different height women.
I hadn't biked in ages, I looked online, determined I wanted a hybrid, but one that was more towards a road bike, I knoew I wouldnt be off road biking. I really wanted to be more upright and comfortable for my bad lower back than a road bike would allow.
so I went to the bike shop, explained my needs and thye guided me. The bike shop should let you take it for a test ride, if not shop else where. they should also help make sure you are properly fitted with the bike and everythig is adjusted to your needs.
You should also look into getting a used bike. I had a hybrid, but decided I needed a road bike to do longer distance rides. I lucked out and found a used Giant carbon fiber road bike with less than 100 miles on it for $300. This gave me the opportunity to get used to a road bike, figure out what I like, without making a big initial investment. Now, when I get ready to buy a new road bike, I will have a much better idea of what to get.
I have owned a comfort/hybrid bike for a few years but wasn't using it much. When I decided to get more serious about cycling, I debated whether to get a road bike or just get more serious w/ the old one.
I would have just stuck with the hybrid if my sole purpose was to exercise. But, I used to run, and I enjoyed running with groups and entering races. Those were the things that got me motivated - the groups and the races, and I knew if it was just me going out to ride around, I probably wouldn't be getting the exercise in.
When I had to give up running due to a bad hip, I decided to try biking as a substitute. I decided to get the road bike. If it were just for exercise, I'd have stuck with the old bike, which weighs more and requires more effort to ride. But, knowing myself, I knew that hooking up with a group would be important to keep me motivated, and I thought I could better keep up on a road bike.
Your needs may differ - the right bike really does depend upon how you want to use it. I got a Trek 2.1
I am living the lifestyle of the thin person that I am in the process of becoming.
One more type of bike to throw out there, to further muddy the waters (LOL!)...
My first adult bike was a cyclocross bike. I never wanted to do cyclocross, but it put me in a similar position as a road bike (which was waht I wanted to do) at a much more reasonable cost. It is also durable enough to do dirt trails and grassy areas. So now that I have proven to myself that I am going to ride more frequently and got a more expensive road bike, I am converting that cyclocross bike into a commuter bike. (You'll find that many people here have more than one bike, also. It's addictive...)
Like the pp's have indicated ..... explore what type of riding you think you will be doing. This will then narrow down the advice or opinions from the TEAM Site tremenduously.
No sense in getting a bike and investing in one and later finding out this is not the type of riding you really wanted to do. Also, keep in mind how far you would have to travel in order to do the type of cycling you may have an interest in. If you have to travel far chances are you may not ride as much as you think
Welcome to the team and welcome to cycling! I just got a new bike myself and I am not a pro by any means. I bought a Trek FX 7.3 WSD (fitness bike, woman specific design). It's technically a hybrid because it doesn't have ram handlebars (I don't like leaning that far forward) and the tires are wider than normal road tires but not as wide as mountain bike tires nor are they knobby like them either.
My husband has a road bike that cost 3x more than mine and he'll be getting the men's version of my bike for winter commuting. It's pretty durable and way lighter than a mountain bike. I myself don't have clipless pedals (most everyone here has them) as I'm still getting used to riding a road bike instead of a mountain bike.
Good luck and feel free to ask the team any other questions you may have. There are already threads on saddles (the seat), bike shorts, sunglasses and funny stories about times we've fallen.
Discipline is remembering what you really want. -Pam Young
I am new to cycling and would like to purchase a bike but really have no clue what to look for. I guess part of my problem is that I am not sure exactly what kind of rides I will be doing because I am new and don't know what I will like yet.
With that said I would love some recommendations on bikes. I want an entry level not to pricey bike that will be versatile considering I do not know what kinds of rides I will enjoy. For the most part I am looking for something that will be great to start out with and let me figure out what I like.
Does any one have any suggestions for brands or types (road, mountain, cross/hybrid) or anything else I should be considering?
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