I Really Don’t See a Problem With My Current Weight

09.15.2010 | 11:21 am

Yesterday, I weighed myself, for the first time since about mid-April. I fully intend to disclose my current weight and how I feel about knowing — for the first time in five months — aforementioned weight, but first I intend to force you to read a whole bunch of explanatory text, with the hope and intention that you will lose interest in my weight before you find out what it is.

I think, with that first paragraph, I’m off to a good start.

My First Reason For Why I Have Not Recently Weighed Myself: Tradition

Whenever I’ve had a big, important race coming up, I’ve stopped weighing myself between two and three weeks before the race. Why? Because — and this is pure scientific truth, not rationalization — I figure that once I get that close to the race, any weight gain (or, hypothetically, weight loss) is not going to be significant enough to affect the outcome of my race.

Therefore, anything I know about weight I gain right before a race (because, let’s face it, I’m not going to lose weight as I taper down and carbo-load up) is only going to mess with my head.

And so, in mid-April, a couple weeks before the IronMan, I put away the scale.

And then I never brought it back out. Because, you know, there’s always another race coming up. Like…um…the one I had in August. And…uh…the one a couple weeks ago.

OK, fine, I guess there might’ve been a couple months in there where I didn’t have a race that was exactly impending.

Which is why I’ve got a very valid, extra-scientific second reason for why I haven’t weighed myself recently.

My Second Reason for Why I Have Not Recently Weighed Myself: Quantum Mechanics!

You may have heard of the “Schrödinger’s Cat Experiment,” wherein the living/dead status of a cat that may or may not have been poisoned is in a state of flux — i.e., the cat is simultaneously alive and dead — until that cat is observed.

It’s a fun experiment, and I recommend the next time you have a child come home with a Science Fair project that you have this child perform this experiment for his or her classmates.

My relationship with the scale is much like the Schrödinger’s cat experiment, except instead of a cat, it is my weight that is not measured. And also, I am not kept in a sealed box, and there are no cyanide tablets or geiger counters involved.

Really, the point I’m trying to get at is that as long as I do not measure my weight, no weight has been gained.

it’s a little more like “Fatty’s Scale.” Which is to say, until I’ve measured my weight gain, no weight gain has occurred. Schrödinger’s cat. Fatty’s weight.

You get the picture.


Why I Have Finally Weighed Myself

The problem with the quantum mechanics aspect of “Fatty’s Weight” is that, at a certain point, other indicators start to make it evident that while I have stopped training like I’m going to be doing a big endurance race soon, I haven’t stopped eating like I’m going to be doing a big endurance race soon.

Or in other words, once you start carbo-loading, you quickly develop a fondness for it.

This has led to — for about the thousandth time in my life — the manifestation of my least favorite (because it’s true) weight-gain axiom, which is deep enough that it belongs on its own line, in bold and italics.

You will know before it shows.

(In fact, it was important enough to indent and put a border around it.)

In this case, I could tell my body is getting ready to hibernate because my pants are tighter. All of them. Which kind of forced me to rule out the “mysterious shrinking pants” theory I otherwise like to cling to so tightly.

My Weight Does Not Matter

So, anyway, for those of you who pushed on through to this point. My weight. It’s 12.07 stone. Which is 169 pounds.

Which is about ten pounds more than I like to weigh.

Or at least, it appeared to be 169 pounds. You see, there were some ameliorating circumstances that make that 169 pounds really quite a bit less than 169 pounds. Specifically:

  • I weighed myself in the afternoon. Ordinarily I weigh myself first thing in the morning, right after I pee. I consider that my true weight. Everyone knows that you’re heaviest during the afternoon. Because you’ve had both breakfast and lunch. And probably a few snacks. And around 64oz of Diet Coke. So I expect that this 169 probably counts for eight pounds or so.
  • I have recently raced. Everyone knows that you gain weight after a big endurance race. This is due to the “post-race-3-day-binge” factor, as well as serious inflammation (which is a form of water retention, I suspect) factors. I figure this is worth two pounds. And a half.
  • I was fully dressed. Actually I can’t remember whether I was fully dressed when I weighed myself. Let’s just assume that I was, though. And let’s further assume that I was wearing very, very heavy shoes. So, maybe seven pounds.
  • It’s been a while since I’ve shaved my legs. Oooh, and my head too. And my eyebrow hair needs trimming. Between all the excess middle-age-man body hair I need to prune, that’s probably two or three ounces of weight I can lose instantly with the help of a razor.

So, when it comes right down to it, when I weighed myself, my reported weight was probably around 17.65 pounds too harsh of a judge.

No need to start dieting. All’s well.


  1. Comment by D n S | 09.15.2010 | 11:27 am

    We’ve been doing a weight loss challenge at work, my boss always wants to weight me after we’ve closed, which is also a few diet cokes more then I want to weigh.

  2. Comment by luggage | 09.15.2010 | 11:50 am

    I’m confused…what happened to the cat?

  3. Comment by Eric | 09.15.2010 | 11:57 am

    > I’m confused…what happened to the cat?

    I’m not sure. I think Elden ate the cat. Which I find worrisome but would certainly explain the weight gain.

  4. Comment by Lisa | 09.15.2010 | 11:59 am

    I weigh myself once a month as maintenance only. I also don’t weigh myself right before a race. I usually fluctuate a lot and I don’t need that extra anxiety in my head! :)

  5. Comment by Graham | 09.15.2010 | 12:12 pm

    I find this absolutely hilarious. Of course I’ve long pondered how Elden came to be known as “Fatty” when to me he looks like he hasn’t eaten in roughly a month.

    If any scale I ever step on weighs anything at all around 169, then either the scale is broken or I’m standing on the moon.

    Fatty, this Clydesdale can surely sympathize with a struggle to maintain a healthy weight, but please keep some sense of proportion about it.

    This makes me wonder if we should host a “bench press Fatty for Livestrong” competition pre or post race?

  6. Comment by Nooch | 09.15.2010 | 12:13 pm

    So when is the page going to be re-named ‘the slightly-overweight-but-only-if-you’re-a-competitive-cyclist’ cyclist?

    Damn you and your Clyde-Emeritus status.

  7. Comment by bikemike | 09.15.2010 | 12:31 pm

    i weigh myself while holding a cat and divide by two to get my actual weight. i have no idea what the cat’s name is or how much he/she weighs before hand so i know all of the measurements are accurate.
    i weigh exactly the color of blue.

  8. Comment by Chris | 09.15.2010 | 12:45 pm

    What does the cat weigh? How much of that weight is attributed to it’s soul? Do cats even have a soul? I can’t see getting any more than a few pounds out of eating a cat. Between the bones, fur and head there’s just not that much left. Even from a fat cat.

  9. Comment by Cyclin' Missy | 09.15.2010 | 12:46 pm

    I don’t know what to say. You look healthy and happy! Keep up the cycling!

  10. Comment by neil | 09.15.2010 | 1:29 pm

    I use to obsess over my weight like a high school cheerleader but discovered it was easier to buy carbon-fiber parts. God bless technology.

  11. Comment by AngieG | 09.15.2010 | 1:36 pm

    @BikeMike- do you have to factor in how many lives that cat has remaining into the feline weight calculation? I can’t imagine each remaining life would have the same weight?

  12. Comment by Fifth Column | 09.15.2010 | 1:49 pm

    Your diversionary tactic failed! I performed a classic spoiler and scrolled to your current weight before continuing to read the post.

  13. Comment by kT | 09.15.2010 | 1:51 pm

    The only problem I see with your quantum mechanics explanation–and I say this as a certified physical chemist, which means I actually passed quantum mechanics, only in graduate school I passed with a B-minus, which everyone knows means really you failed, but your adviser told the instructor not to fail you, because you were needed to put in your 70-80 hours of work per week at below-minimum wage–where was I? right, the only problem is that the more weight you gain, the less you actually behave like a quantum particle. So really, QM only works when you’re super-thin. Like before the added weight of the diet Cokes.

  14. Comment by FatPedro | 09.15.2010 | 1:57 pm

    Mmmmm … I just ate a delicious burrito!!

  15. Comment by rich | 09.15.2010 | 2:03 pm

    I too have been training to race…I’ve done the carbo loading and the resting of my body in prep for the race…..figure I’ll be all set by the 2024 season…

    Funny stuff, but if 169 is your heavy weight, you might want to rename the blog

  16. Comment by Clydesteve | 09.15.2010 | 2:05 pm

    Fatty – It is information like this that keeps me coming back. Thanks. I haven’t weighed yet, but, actually I know.

    Forearmed, I think I can now slither my way out of the inevitable conclusion for a few more months. (Which is WAY easier than slithering out of my pants!)

  17. Comment by Roger Whitney | 09.15.2010 | 2:24 pm

    Oh yea KT????? Tell us something we DON’T know!!!

    Geeez!!!! ;-)

  18. Comment by Kathy McElhaney | 09.15.2010 | 2:49 pm

    Sounds like you need to eat more pie. Besides, spandex stretches, right?

  19. Comment by Stan | 09.15.2010 | 2:50 pm

    Yikes. So apparently I weigh about the same as Fatty. I repeat: Yikes.

  20. Comment by Drew | 09.15.2010 | 2:57 pm

    I’d have to lose fifty pounds to be Fatty’s weight.

    If anyone needs me, I’ll be cutting off my arms, learning to grab the bar with my teeth.

    Now that I think about it, there might be a serious aero advantage in that idea. Where’s that router? I don’t want any namby-pamby-sew-’em-back-on-later options.

  21. Comment by MattC | 09.15.2010 | 3:21 pm

    Ya’ll just need to get a big ol’ tapeworm like I have…problem solved. I think maybe I should set up a booth on LIVESTRONG Day and sell off some of his segments…a measly $1000 each (is that too low?) My worm can eat whatever it wants, whenever it wants…and as much as it wants. I think my worm could actually eat a cat, even if it was dead. Maybe it has already had one, come to think of it…that would explain the fur in my mouth that one morning (and my neighbors cat mysteriously missing the next day). Hmmm…what was this post about?

  22. Comment by Squirrelhead | 09.15.2010 | 3:24 pm

    This post had me cracking up. I have used all the same theories to dodge the scale. Man if the scale ever reads 169 I am going to have a party. I am currently in a bet to lose the highest percentage of weight over 3 months. The loser has to hike 2 miles up a mountain and 2 miles back down in a speedo and sombrero in med December.

  23. Comment by Elisabethvi | 09.15.2010 | 3:32 pm

    Very funny! I’ve been weighing myself at least 50 times a day. You see, my Fat Cyclist jersey and bibs will be arriving soon. (please let them fit, please let them fit) Must. Eat. Less…Must. Ride. More!

  24. Comment by Alison | 09.15.2010 | 3:59 pm

    What about ear wax? When was the last time you cleaned your ears – all that waxy build-up has to weigh something!

  25. Comment by judi | 09.15.2010 | 5:20 pm

    i think you need to eat a sandwich!

  26. Comment by Robin | 09.15.2010 | 6:53 pm

    Don’t forget wearing a watch and wedding band adds pounds, too!

  27. Comment by Triflefat | 09.15.2010 | 7:16 pm

    Such sophistry can’t avoid the obvious Fatty.

    You’ve let yourself go. You’re now absolutely huge.

    Time to HTFU and bring back the Banjo Brothers challenge.

  28. Comment by dug | 09.15.2010 | 8:21 pm

    i think i mentioned that i had the weirdest thought as I crossed the finish line at the park city point to point race–”Someone get me a scale! This might be my only chance to see the low side of 175 for the rest of my life! My kingdom for a scale!”

    nobody got me a scale. i’m pretty sure i’ve gained ten lbs in the subsequent two weeks.

  29. Comment by cece | 09.15.2010 | 8:55 pm

    Going to Moab on Friday for the Century Tour and there is no way I am stepping on the scale before that event! My pants are tight Too and I would rather have denial than to actually know the total and let it mess with my head!

    And to make a full confession, before i read this post I was googling for bakeries in Moab…they have several esp a cupcake bakery YUM!

  30. Comment by stuckinmypedals | 09.15.2010 | 9:03 pm

    I never thought of trimming my eyebrows before stepping onto the scale. Yet another good tip, Fatty.

  31. Comment by Jenn | 09.16.2010 | 1:11 am

    @neil – You almost made me spit out my coffee. There is a running joke in our house that if I’m going to spend 3K on weight loss, it will be for liposuction rather than carbon fiber.
    @MattC – I may have asked in a previous scrap over your metabolism, but I can’t recall, how old are you again? Because my tapeworm went away when I turned…oh, who am I kidding…I probably weighed 169 in the 8th grade. Still, I’m curious whether age is ever going to make you eat some of that smack talk!
    Between the post and the comments – hilarious way to start my day. Thanks, all!

  32. Comment by Doug (WAY upstate NY) | 09.16.2010 | 5:59 am

    I highly recommend appendicitis for weight loss. It is a one time fix (hopefully) but I found it to be quite effective.

    Doug (who is about to enter hibernation, because the thermometer should be dropping to ungodly low values soon, because he lives so far north)

  33. Comment by Anne | 09.16.2010 | 7:15 am

    169 pounds is that too much???

  34. Comment by Jenni | 09.16.2010 | 7:19 am

    @MattC that was hilarious

  35. Comment by Hawkeye | 09.16.2010 | 7:54 am

    Your “heavy weight” is still lower than my 200+ miles a week 52 weeks a year, shaved legs, shaved head (but scruffy beard), after morning pee, watch what I eat and drink race week weight. At best, I hit 170. Before biking I was just over 200. I suppose I could hit your “heavy weight” if I put down the cookies and shaved the beard more often. But… naaaaaa.

  36. Comment by MattC | 09.16.2010 | 9:10 am

    @Jenn…I JUST turned FIFTY last week…so it can’t be metabolism…thus, a tapeworm is the only likely explanation. Are you interested in a segment? I hear you can pop off a part and it will regrow.

    I’m not kidding you when I say that I CAN (and do) eat whatever I want. A box of Krispy Kreme donuts pops up in the shop? I can take car of that. NO PROBLEM! (not kidding). If you told me that I would be put to death if I don’t gain 10 lbs in the next year…well, you might as well kill me now…it AIN’T gonna happen. I guess I won the lottery in life on this part anyway. My wife can’t STAND to watch me eat. She says it’s not fair. I just know it’s not my fault…we all have our crosses to bear. Mine is that it cost’s a lot to feed me. Curses…what a horrible like I have! (GRIN!)

  37. Comment by Adventure Monkey | 09.16.2010 | 9:11 am

    Jeez 169!? You ARE huge. I wore my body out and got mono after finishing the Dirty Kanza 200 and the doctor told me to quit riding, but my life revolves around riding, so ride I will. Although I ride much less and have gotten to 154 which is getting a little big wouldn’t you say? Keep in mind my blog should’ve been named the short cyclist. I’m just a we little man.

  38. Comment by hartofak | 09.16.2010 | 9:31 am

    I’ve been trying to get in shape for a fall foliage tour. Unfortunately my training got me to peak condition in June, and now all the exercise I get is stepping over my scale.

  39. Comment by ProdigalCyclist | 09.16.2010 | 9:45 am

    “post-race-3-day-binge”??? You’re much too disciplined for me. I’m on day 5 of my post-Lotoja binge and have no intention of stopping for at least another 3 days…

  40. Comment by roan | 09.16.2010 | 11:50 am

    Reading this a day late…that sucks as much as weight gain. A couple of comments…I luv reading the comments “almost” as much as Fatty’s blog. Cats don’t have souls, with 9 lives it just becomes time to go.
    Fatty’s axiom “you will know before it shows” so true up to a point, then it shows. Seasonal weight gain prior to hibernation, such a bear. Then the calendar throws the holidays at you. “Fatty’s Scale” must always be a sliding one. Can I buy a scale that measures in Stone in the UK ? Seems like such a small number though I do have a problem with the word “stone”. As always Fatty…you rock !

  41. Comment by Greg @ Greg Rides Trails | 09.16.2010 | 2:35 pm

    Oh yeah, we can justify anything, can’t we?

  42. Comment by Jenn | 09.17.2010 | 12:11 am

    @MattC…well, dammit, I guess I’m going to just have to suck it up and respect my elder here, aren’t I? Hmmm…and, I suppose, start saving some caysh for a piece of that worm. Happy birthday! I’m celebrating the 12th anniversary of my 30th birthday on Sunday…cheers!

  43. Comment by MatthewinSEA | 09.17.2010 | 3:21 am

    If you’re going to pull out Schrodinger’s Cat, you also need to claim the Heisenberg Principle.

    In effect, by measuring your waist’s circumference by noticing your pants are tight, you have increased the accuracy of the measurement of your size and therefore your position. Because of this, Heisenberg’s Principle says you cannot know your momentum (and therefore your mass, and therefore your weight) as accurately.

    Those ten pounds? Chalk them up to uncertainty of your quantum bathroom scale.

  44. Comment by Richard | 09.17.2010 | 3:54 am

    What’s 107kg in seppo?

    Just glad my bike is < 8kg before water bottles.

  45. Comment by J | 09.18.2010 | 1:49 pm

    this really does beg the question: how tall is Elden that he thinks 169 is a bit heavy?


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