The last four years or so I have got back into cycling way more than I ever was when I rode occasionally in the past. Practice makes perfect. Not that I am particularly fast or strong, but much more so than I was 30 years ago. Many people are not made to run -- I know I am not. Cycling doesn't bother my knees like running would.
Lots of folks are concerned about the safety aspects of riding on Austin streets. I say, ride defensively, use multiple bright lights when riding at night, don't ride certain streets when the drunks are out, and there is a LOT you can do to stay safe. Check on the link to a bicycle safety course. Much of what you might believe you will find out is different. So here are some links and pictures.
AUSTIN CYCLIST MEETUP
BICYCLE AUSTIN FORUM
BICYCLE SAFETY -- GOOD SITE
BICYCLE SAFETY CLASSES
BICYCLE SPORT SHOP IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Click on the pictures to view full size. Two are from a popular mountain biking wooded park outside of Asheville, North Carolina, the others are all from the cyclist's paradise -- the Fort David/Marfa area in West Texas.