I am Listening to My Body

05.2.2011 | 2:57 pm

201105021353.jpg A “Help a Cyclist in His Fight Against Cancer, Win a Trip and an Incredible Bike” Note from Fatty: Jeff Bates has worked for 20+ years in the bicycle industry. He’s fighting melanoma, and needs some support.

Bates’ friends have stepped up in a big way, organizing one of the most awesome bike giveaway contests I’ve ever seen. Specifically, by donating $10, you get a chance at a fully-custom, handbuilt Pereira singlespeed bike, decked out with an incredible set of components: Enve, Chris Ching, Shimano, and Rock Shox.

All told, this bike would retail for $7200 or so.

But that’s not even the whole prize.

Because in addition to getting the bike, the winner will be flown to Portland to be fitted for the bike (and for a bike tour of the city).

I mean, I thought I put on great bike contests, but this one is off the charts.

Click here for details, or buy your ticket directly here:

I am Listening to My Body

Saturday, I meant to go on a long ride. You know, something to start reminding myself that I am a cyclist, as opposed to someone who enjoys looking at bikes and reading about cyclists on the Internet.

But when I woke up, I saw there was five inches of new snow on the ground. And I was still achy and sore from the previous day’s effort. So I made an executive decision.

“It’s a rest day,” I decided. And, when asked by others why I wasn’t out riding, I elaborated: “I’m listening to my body.”

I suddenly realized how incredibly smart this extremely valid-sounding reason for not getting out on a ride made me sound. Like I’m supernaturally in-tune with my capabilities and limitations. Like I’m cleverly avoiding an over-use injury, or perhaps am (just barely!) dodging the Chronic Fatigue bullet.

In short, my body told me not to go out on a ride on a day when it — coincidentally — was cold and wet outside, and I heeded my body’s sage advice.

What’s really amazing, though, is that since then I have found my body speaking more clearly and loudly to me since then.

For example, I made Chicken and Tortilla Soup (I’m really close on finishing my own recipe for this and will post it when my confidence is absolute) in the crockpot last Saturday (during the time when I would have otherwise been on a long ride). I felt good about this, because I was cooking something really healthy.

Then, when it was time to serve, it occurred to me: this soup would be so much more delicious if it had a big dollop of sour cream in it. And a handful of cheese. And a fistful (which is like a handful, but more fist-shaped) of crumbled tortilla chips. And half an avocado.

“Wow,” I thought, “That’s a lot of extra fat.”

But you know, I didn’t just want to add all those things. I really really wanted them. Like, my mouth was watering and everything.

And then I realized: my body was trying to tell me that I’ve been starving it of the calories and fat it needs, and that I should listen to my body.

Which I did.

In fact, I’m pleased to say that I had two helpings. And then I made strawberry-and-Oreo milkshakes for the family, because I figured that if my body wanted fat, who am I to deny it?

The following morning, when the alarm woke me, I was groggy and gassy. I staggered to an upright position, but it was clear — from the way I kept nodding off while trying to put on my bike shorts — that I was still sleepy.

“My body’s trying to tell me I need more sleep,” I mumbled. Clearly, I needed to go back to bed. Which I did.

I swear, it’s almost like my body’s been calling me on the phone for months and months, and now that I’ve finally picked up the phone, it’s telling me all sorts of interesting and helpful things.

Unfortunately, my body doesn’t seem to realize that the things it’s been telling me have been causing me to fail utterly in my quest to get to racing shape and weight for this summer.

More to the point, as of this morning, I weight 170.4 pounds. Which is 12 pounds more than what I need to weigh before I can build up my SuperFly 100.

So, I’m afraid I’m going to have to stop listening to my body. I think I’m also going to have to do something a little more extreme than say, “I can’t build up my SuperFly 100 ’til I get to 158 pounds.” Because the fact is, the 100 Miles of Nowhere is coming up fast (i.e., June 4), and I’ve got a 13,000-foot day of climbing ahead of me.

Then, one week later, I’ve got The Rockwell Relay, and I’m not very excited about the prospect of being the slow guy on my team.

So, tomorrow I’m going to announce a new contest. One which, I believe, will get me to my new weight.

And my body will just have to get used to me not listening to it anymore.


  1. Comment by Fat Cathy | 05.2.2011 | 3:19 pm

    Listening to my body made me ‘Fat Cathy’

  2. Comment by Clydesteve | 05.2.2011 | 3:43 pm

    My body was telling me all sorts of things yesterday while I was out on a 55-miler. First ride >30 miles this year.

    My reply?


  3. Comment by aussie kev | 05.2.2011 | 3:45 pm

    “and now that I’ve finally picked up the phone”

    story of my life !!!

    “dont train, have a glass of wine instead”

    allez cadel

  4. Comment by Chris | 05.2.2011 | 3:49 pm

    My body told me “takeout Chinese is good if you’re racing this weekend”
    I heard. And obeyed.

  5. Comment by Bykjunkie | 05.2.2011 | 4:00 pm

    I have learned ( the hard way) to do he complete opposite of what my body wants to do. I only listen to it now if it bribes me with ice cream.

  6. Comment by Steve | 05.2.2011 | 4:16 pm

    My body’s favorite message: you’ve just finished riding for 3 (or 4 or 7) hours. You deserve a beer. And four more beers. And 43 tacos.

  7. Comment by Addicted Roadie | 05.2.2011 | 4:44 pm

    . . . and my body says “Feed me!”

  8. Comment by Dan in Sac | 05.2.2011 | 5:04 pm

    I think your body is intimidated by the new Superfly. Maybe you just need to introduce your body to the Superfly and show it that the two of them can be friends.

  9. Comment by Jeremy | 05.2.2011 | 6:05 pm

    My body has been telling me I will not be riding outside in the sunshine, despite the brain’s desire. When it’s not my own body, my kids’ bodies have been saying the same thing. They have been timing their illnesses to the very rare days of sunshine in Oregon. I curse pathogens. Until we eliminate them, I suppose there’s always the Wii and a set of rollers to keep me honest.

  10. Comment by Sansauto | 05.2.2011 | 6:05 pm

    I prefer to listen to Newton. He said something about inertia and I pay particular heed to that word for two reasons

    a)I’m really sort of enjoying my life as an object at rest.

    b) What if he’s right and when I become an object in motion, I stay in motion. That would be really dangerous for me and others around me.

  11. Comment by jason | 05.2.2011 | 6:53 pm

    Wow. After reading FatCyclist for over 4 years tonight the message become persona. I grew up a street over from Jeff and have lost contact with him for the last 20 years. I’m proud to support Jeff in his fight against cancer.

  12. Comment by Hairy Legs | 05.2.2011 | 9:16 pm

    I feel ya’

    My phone rang on Sunday. I pulled the phone from my pocket to check the caller ID. I was pleased when it said, “body.”

    Per “body’s” demands, I promptly ate 2 pieces of chocolate cake…”body” left a message it was grateful.

    I need to block “body” on my caller ID this week in prep for the Moab Gran Fondo.

  13. Comment by CF | 05.2.2011 | 11:29 pm

    My body told me to eat 3239 calories today. But that’s probably because I hiked 7 miles in the Santa Monica mountains and I still have a calorie deficit for today (hooray losing weight!)

  14. Comment by RandoBoy | 05.3.2011 | 6:54 am

    My body calls regularly. The ring-tone is “Fat-Bottomed Girls.”


  15. Comment by MattC | 05.3.2011 | 7:52 am

    I thought for years that I was listening to my body when it asked for things like donuts n extra helpings of food n stuff. Turns out it was my 25′ tapeworm doing all the talking, making me THINK it was my body asking. Who knew tapeworms could be so sneaky? We’ve since made our peace, and I feed him well…and he in turn makes sure I can’t possibly gain any weight whatsoever, despite my best attempts. Kind of a win-win situation. (oh…and my wife hates me btw..or more accuratly, she hates my tapeworm…but I know she’s just jealous of my superpower).

  16. Comment by Angie | 05.3.2011 | 7:56 am

    My body needs more carbs. I race well for the first 15 miles, but then slow dramatically for the last 5 miles. My body has explained to me that it has depleted the muscle glycogen and that I should have had more food the day before. So, I must fill my diet with crackers (and cheese), pasta (and cheese), baked potatoes (and sour cream, shredded cheese, and bacon bits), bagels (and cream cheese), cereal (and sugar), and macaroni (and cheese). But should I only eat this way on the day before a race? I think not! That would be deprivation. I must listen to my body! Thanks Fatty!

  17. Comment by TimD | 05.3.2011 | 8:18 am

    Body Talk


  18. Comment by rich | 05.3.2011 | 9:34 am

    Love it! My body as well talks to me, but I’m trying my best to do the exact opposite….sit and watch TV really means go ride my bike.
    Eat a second bowl of ice cream really means, put down the spoon you lazy lard butted slug…..or something to that effect…

  19. Comment by Anthony | 05.4.2011 | 6:45 am

    Can I know the diet you used to lose 63 pounds in one day! That is impressive, I think it would be hard to use that bike if you hacked off both legs to drop that much weight! I think you should just send it to me.

  20. Comment by Marilee | 11.22.2011 | 9:35 pm

    I was so confused about what to buy, but this makes it undersatdnblae.

  21. Comment by nkswzqua | 11.24.2011 | 4:16 am

    JFKj5r duszlcmpnljo

  22. Comment by xyhwwvpqx | 11.30.2011 | 11:16 am

    MQe4L3 dtgdfvzrmjhl


Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.