One of the biggest challenges you will face when starting out is deciding what sort of bike is right for you. This will be more difficult if you have no idea what to look for or what to questions to ask.
There are lots of different bikes for different sorts of riding. Then there are different sizes of bikes and I am advised that there are also ladies and mens versions, but in my experience, this seems to be something that is ignored in most bike retail outlets. Then there are different attachments on each bike. Handlebars, seats, bells and carrier racks are the most obvious variations. Less obvious to new riders is the quality of the mechanical bits on the bike. Generally, the more expensive the machine, the better the quality of the gears, pedals, brakes and so on.
The cheapest bikes will most likely give you the roughest, most uncomfortable ride – these bikes are aptly labelled bone shakers! They can turn a keen rider into a sore and demoralised person very quickly! But no-one wants to spend up big on a bike that may well turn out to be unsuitable either. I suggest you decide what sort of riding you want to do and then get the best advice you can, be that from an experienced rider or perhaps from the folks at the local bike shop.
Read as much as you can, there are many hundreds of blogs on the internet, stories about people riding, touring, describing their bikes in great detail and/or generally providing advice. If nothing else, you will become inspired and enthused and keen to get out and get going.
Once you have been riding for a while, you will know a lot more about what you need in the way of a bike. You may still love your first bike and decide that it still suits you perfectly. Or, you may find that you are yearning for something different that can accommodate your more refined needs and wants! Then it is time to modify your current bike to make it more appropriate for your needs or to think about a replacement.