Just wanted to say Hi and introduce myself.
I'm 46 years old and was an on again, off again casual cyclist in my late teens and early 20s. After about two decades away from the sport, I got back into it seriously last year as part of my comeback from allowing myself to become quite obese (300 lbs) and suffering some heart problems and weight related injuries. Happy to say I'm 70+ pounds lighter and off all medications with my doctor's blessing.
I've ridden a few centuries (both organized and solo) and participate in organized B group rides from an area bike shop, as well as enjoy a lot of recreational/fitness cycling on the rural highways and paved county roads in my area. While I enjoy the B-level "noncompetitive" group rides, it didn't take long to realize that my interests are more in the line of longer distance riding rather than short and fast. I've got an old aluminum Trek 1400 that is my "road" bike, but even that is equipped with a triple and a more touring height and angle on the stem. My touring bike is a flatbar 1990s Trek 700 Multitrack that I built from the frame up. Between the bikes, I have ridden 2,200 miles so far this year and feel I'm ready for some new challenges.
I'm very interested in getting into touring and am contemplating some 2-3 day trips around MN. A friend gave me a copy of the Adventure Cycling magazine and the touring community seems to be just what I am looking for.