Ahhhh... today was my first ride back on my good old road bike (my Manta) after it had been in for a tune up and I was away for vacation. It was high time to get the bike in for service and now my old steel frame bike is working like a dream.
It was hard switching to my mountain bike for rides, which is like switching to a Jeep 4x4 after driving a Porsche, but my few weeks on the mountain bike have resulted in some great workouts (due to the heavier bike and more frictiony tires).
Today's ride with my regular cycling friends Brian and Kathy felt so good. Riding the Manta felt like riding on a rail instead of a four-wheel-drive tank! I should probably know the difference between the two bikes by now, but I'm always amazed after extended time on one or the other, how they feel.
Anyway, it will take a while to get back into rhythm on the Manta, but I'm glad to be back, flying on the old road bike. :-)
BTW, American road riders take heart! I was in a local bike shop over the weekend and had a chance to speak with the owner for a while. He said that this year's Tour has excited many other old roadies about riding, so he's seeing many cyclist coming in the store and getting out to ride again.
For my European friends who live where road cycling is enjoying a strong following, you have to understand that road cycling in the US, while still alive, has lost alot to the recent mountain bike craze 10-15 years ago. You can get roadie stuff, but it's just not as common as mountain bike gear, though that is changing, particularly with Lance being such a strong performer the past 5 years of the Tour.
I don't have anything against mountain biking -- I love that too -- but there is something special about road biking which I love and want to share with others. :-)
Oh, one last tidbit on cycling -- we rented and saw the cycling movie Breaking Away last night and enjoyed it immensely. This is the story of a kid who loves cycling and his townie (non-college attending local kid) friends in Bloomington Indiana, home of Indiana University.
The townies are in a running battle with college kids, which intensifies when Dave (the cyclist) falls in love with a university girl. It's a funny movie with some great cycling moments, including an epic race between the townie kids (Cutters) and college kids in a criterium race. I highly recommend this movie!
Okay roadies -- get out there and ride!! :-)