I can recall my first road ride. It was with my long time friend Tim Plumb when I lived in San Francisco. He asked me if I'd like to go as I'd just got an old downtube shifting road bike from the late 80s that weighed a metric ton. I'd ridden it around a little getting burritos and what not, but he said we'd be out for about 2 hrs and thought I'd could swing that.
We set off and went across the Golden Gate Bridge in the early morning up a local mountain. My lungs and legs took a beating grinding up the 10% gradients to put it simply. I cursed every pedal stroke and wanted to go home. Tim pushed me further and we eventually got to the top.
I wasn't into to road riding until we went down the monster of a hill. My mountain bike past kicked in on the descent and I fell in love with road cycling as it felt like I was being shot out of a cannon.
Here's my go-to list for road riding to carry with you on your next lung beating adventure:
1. Specialized Turbo Cottons - They're fast, duh. Velonews.com recently tested the Turbo Cotton as one of the fastest tires on the market.
2. Specialized Tarmac Road bike - My smooth and all day rideable race bike.
3. Specialized Grail gloves - Trust me, I hate gloves but these are choice.
4. Specialized Evade helmet - Super quiet so I can be at peace out there in the rolling VA hills.
5. Cinelli Mike Giant Tape - Rad bar tape - Make a statement to your competition that you care about the details - they will be scared.