Hello fellow cyclists! I don't know much about forums so I hope I'm doing this right. In fact this is the 1st forum I've decided to join in any topic. Anyways about myself. My name is Jon I'm from Western New York. I'm 27 yrs old. I've been riding most of my life (honestly since before I can remember). I've been riding bmx bikes since I was about 10. I used to ride all the time sometimes 6 to 8 hours in a day just cruisin around town. In recent years I lost my passion for cycling it just became such a chore and I grew tired of pedaling and pumping so much and covering so little ground. I know it sounds ridiculous but I still don't have my license or a vehicle. growing up I didn't have many friends and getting a car was never a concern to me I had my bikes. I started smoking when I was 14. since 17 I had been a pack a day smoker and in the past 2 years I hit a pack and a half. Recently my girlfriend and I had a garage sale and we did really well and I decided it was time to get back into cycling and pushing for a healthier lifestyle. I took the money I had made and bought us both new bikes (we've been together 7 yrs now and I was shocked to learn the last new bike she owned was a child's walt disney bike with training wheels I had gone through so many bikes in my life I felt compelled to get her a new bike). I let her pick out her own bike we got her a girls diamondback mountain bike from a dorks sporting goods. I know many people say to stay away from retail but she doesn't do nearly as much riding as I do so she picked the one she wanted and if she enjoys riding as much as I used to and thankfully do again we will upgrade next season or the following. with the remaining money I decided it was time to move on from bmx and get a larger geared bike, my first geared bike. unfortunately I didn't have enough money to afford an entry level road bike from my LBS so I headed to bikesdirect. yes I am we aware that bikesdirect is frowned upon in the professional cycling scene. I decided to do it as best I could though and got fitted first to make sure I was getting the right size bike. anyways I decided to go with a dawes lightning 1200. I am very very happy with this bike. now back to the smoking lol (I apologize if this is too long a thread). when I decided it was time to get back into cycling and living healthier I also decided it time to kick the cancer sticks to the curb. I signed up for a quit smoking program (after trying numerous times in recent years and having failed quitting I thought to do it right I need to get more help and get more informed). I started the quitting process 13 days ago. the first week or so I had messed up. but I am proud to say that I am on day 6 of being absolutely smoke free. it's incredible how in 6 days how much better I feel. back to the dawes today is day 18 with the new bike. yesterday I hit 200 miles on the odometer I was very proud of that as well and I broke my previous top speed of 28.9mph yesterday & I hit 30mph. I do at least 10 miles a day weather permitting and in the past week I've had a couple days where I did 20 miles (2 rides in one day I'm not ready for a straight 20 yet). the longest straight ride I've had was 15.53 miles. I'm hoping by the end of the season here I can achieve at least 800 miles total and hopefully break my current top speed record I also am hoping and planning to get a 30 mile ride in before the end of the season. anyways I've had 3 rides this past week where i get about 8 miles in and I start "bonking" out. I was wondering if anyone could be so kind to help in a better meal plan geared towards healthier living and cycling. I plan on increasing my proteins, carbs, and whole grains. we ate way too much fast food before and that is also something I plan on changing. also any other road cycling or maintenance tips would greatly be appreciated. I have purchased cycling shorts and jerseys, a bottle and a cage, I'm learning how to use gears properly and now I'm working on my cadence. also as I stated before I'm well aware that bikesdirect is frowned upon and I hope the people here won't gimme too much a hard time about it. but going from a 42lbs bmx to a 24lbs road bike is a huge improvement in weight reduction for me personally. I appreciate any and all tips that can be offered and look forward to hopefully learning some new things and chatting with fellow cyclists who have a passion for riding. thanks again everybody!