Help Me Help Dustin Keep a Promise, Win a Dream Bike

10.4.2011 | 7:15 am

Dustin Brady and I are good friends. We’ve got a lot in common. In fact, a little too much in common.

There’s the good stuff: We both love bikes — I write about them all the time, and he works for Shimano.

There’s the all-too-common stuff: we both are engaged in a pretty much permanent battle to lose weight and keep it off.

And there’s the awful stuff: I lost my wife to breast cancer. Not much later, Dustin lost his fiance, Michelle, to breast cancer.

And now he and I work together, whenever we can, to fight cancer. Most often, this has been by his arranging for incredible bike-related prizes for LiveStrong Challenge contests, in honor of Susan’s memory.

This time, though, I’d like you to get behind me and put the full force of Team Fatty into helping Dustin honor Michelle.

And, by the way, by doing so you’ll possibly win one of a number of prizes that are just head-spinningly incredible.


Right now, Dustin is in Hawaii. This Saturday, he’s going to be doing the Kona Ironman — his first Ironman attempt — in tribute to Michelle. Here’s why, in his own words:

My fiancé Michelle was sweet and sassy.

I knew she had weeks to live about a month before she did (Doctor told me to let her ask and go at her own pace). Well, during that month I kept asking myself, what am I going to do with myself?

Well, I had taken Michelle to Kona in 2008 & 2009. In 2009 about 11pm at night as we watched the inspirational finishers she turned to me and said, “You should do this someday” … I replied … “Yeah I would like to try, I’ll put it on the bucket list.”


I remember right where I was when I made the decision I was going to try and get into Kona (This is where we grew our appreciation and respect for the sport) and do the race in her memory. I was driving home to take a shower before going back to the hospital … it was right where the 73 merges into the 405 heading south through Mission Viejo. I was never going to tell her … I was simply going to do it and get healthy again like Michelle wanted.

So jump forward two weeks … Michelle finally asked the doctor the tough questions. She went through the initial emotional BS but then instantly started worrying about her loved ones. What was Tiffany going to do, she wanted to give her our scooter. What about her Mom?

And then in typical Michelle fashion as I was stepping out of the room to get something to eat … she point-blank asks me, “What are you going to do when I’m gone … you need life skills!!”

I replied, “Life Skills?!?” with a smile on my face (always try to show your loved one things are going to be ok).

Then I continued … I’ll tell you what I’m going to do … I’m going to do an Ironman for you … and for me.”

She looks at me, and starts to tear up. This is the last thing I wanted! I went to her to hug her and tell her I love her.

But as I approached the bed and leaned in for a hug, she stuck her hand out to stop me, then rotated her hand to shake my hand, and says “YOU PROMSE!?!?”

I shook it right then and there! The rest is history. Now I’m trying to live each day like she did … with a smile on my face and trying my best to seize each and every day to the fullest.

So when I do Kona, I will be doing three things.

  1. I want to raise $20K for the Young Survivors Coalition in her name
  2. I will carry her ashes with me in a small sealed container the entire distance
  3. I will wear a special kit promoting something she started. At the end of the landing page it sums up why … I want people battling cancer to know they are not alone. My website is (a little aggressive but it’s what most people think!)

Fight Cancer, Help a Friend Keep a Promise, Win a Dream Bike

Of course, Dustin’s on his own as far as finishing the Kona IronMan goes, though I cannot imagine more amazingly powerful motivation than he has. (And I will post his number and info on following his progress on the race as soon as it’s available.)

But I think we can help Dustin with that first objective.

And since Dustin’s made some out-of-this-world prizes available, I believe we might just be able to eclipse that goal by a good little margin.

I’ve signed Team Fatty up as a member of Weiser’s Army in a cause that Michelle deeply believed in: The Young Survival Coalition, which offers resources, connections and outreach to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

And here are the things we’re going to give away.

The Grand Prize: Your Choice of a 2012 Giant TCR Advanced SL With Shimano Dura-Ace Di2

This is a pro-level road bike — in fact, the bike and components Team Rabobank rides:


You get to pick the frame, either with the integrated seat mast, in black or white, or with an adjustable seat post. For myself, I think it’d be pretty darned hard to beat having the integrated seatmast in white:


That is going to be the foundation of a seriously clean-looking, amazingly advanced bike, especially once you put on a full Dura-Ace Di2 group on it. You know the one — incredibly fast, accurate, electronic shifting.

On a personal note, I’ve been loving Di2 on my own bike for more than two years. During which time I’ve had to get it fixed or taken in for maintenance exactly zero times. And I charge the battery about once every two or three months.

It’s seriously more reliable than manual shifting. Not to mention faster. And you can do shifts you could not normally do (like a quick shift on the front derailleur during a very steep climb).

You also get your choice of a Dura-Ace clincher wheelset, either 24mm, 35mm, or 50mm profile.


And hey, how about some carbon Dura-Ace pedals:


And you’ll cap it all off with a PRO Vibe Carbon Bar and Stem.

How much would this bike cost if you were to go out and buy it yourself? Oh, I dunno — how about around $10,000.00.

If you are not already a serious road cyclist, this bike is going to turn you into one. You just won’t be able to help yourself.

More Awesome Prizes

Of course, only one person can win this dream road bike. But there are going to be some pretty excellent other prizes given away too:

  • A Dura-Ace clincher wheelset, either 24mm, 35mm, or 50mm profile. Whichever you like. And since we looked at the 24mm wheels last time, let’s take a quick look at the 50mm wheels here:
  • A GoPro HD Camera, with a bike mount, so you can get glorious high def video of your riding adventures.
  • A set of Shimano Dura-Ace Carbon Pedals
  • An HTC jersey, autographed (but you’ll have to wait and see by whom!)
  • One of everything FCancerUp store.

That is a big ol’ serious batch of prizes. For a good cause, and for a good friend. So please, donate.

How It Works

Entering the contest is really easy. For every $5.00 you donate at my Tour de Pink fundraising page, you get a chance at winning each of these prizes. So, here’s how it works, in nice easy steps:

  1. Go to Team Fatty’s Tour de Pink fundraising page.
  2. Donate any amount, in $5.00 increments.
  3. For every $5.00 you donate, you get a row on my magical spreadsheet of prizes.
  4. I choose winning rows at random, using to choose winners.
  5. You must donate by Wednesday, October 12, to win.
  6. I will contact winners by phone and / or email.

Pretty simple. And the fact is, Young Survival Coalition is about as straight-line to the type of cancer that both Susan and Michelle fought. Charity Navigator gives them four stars.

So your money will be well-spent, on an incredibly relevant cancer.

Speaking for both Dustin and myself, thank you very much for taking the time to make a donation.

PS: I need someone to be the official Team Fatty rider for the Tour de Pink. It’s a three-day ride, and it looks incredible, and I wish I could go. But I can’t. So I need someone to go and do the ride, being the official Team Fatty rider.

And what I’d really like would be if it’s someone who has lived with breast cancer, either as a survivor or as a caretaker.

If you’d like to be the person who rides for Team Fatty — and you’re willing to come back and tell the story, with words and photos, either leave a comment or send me an email with a little bit about your story.



  1. Comment by AngieG | 10.4.2011 | 8:15 am

    Donation on the way!!!!

    Dustin- Good Luck!!! We’ll be with you all the way. So many comments are made regarding the strength and courage of those physically battling cancer. However I think it takes just as much or more to support a loved one. You’re an inspiration to all of us.

    I wish we could be there to crew for you!! We’ll be there in spirit with Michelle though pushing you through each pedal stroke!!!

  2. Comment by RANTWICK | 10.4.2011 | 8:33 am

    Good on you both for continuing with such great, personal, fundraising efforts and mind-blowing prizes. I don’t know what I would do with such a bike; I’m not worthy! Fatty, is there any way to do a PayPal thing instead?

  3. Comment by rich | 10.4.2011 | 8:54 am

    Good luck Dustin! Thank you again Fatty for providing a way for us to do something good….

  4. Comment by LauraS | 10.4.2011 | 9:05 am

    Good luck in Kona, Dustin. Like Angie said, supporting someone with cancer takes great strength and courage. You’ve already proven you have what it takes to kick butt in this event. And ditto the thanks to Fatty for providing us so many awesome ways to give back!

  5. Comment by Christina | 10.4.2011 | 9:14 am

    Donation made! Best wishes in Kona :)

  6. Comment by Bodhi | 10.4.2011 | 9:37 am

    Done! Both parents fighting (and winning) against Leukemia. Best of luck!

  7. Comment by Jenni | 10.4.2011 | 9:51 am

    Wow, I wish I was available to be the representative. Throw my name in the hat for next year, without a doubt!

    Donation on the way too. Dustin, I wish you all the success in the world, and we’ll be with you in spirit as will your beautiful Michelle. Dig deep and get ‘er done.

  8. Comment by Dripslobber | 10.4.2011 | 9:52 am

    Donation made! Dustin, in my eyes you’ve already won. Good luck!

  9. Comment by BZ | 10.4.2011 | 10:47 am

    Donated. And that is an awesome URL.

  10. Comment by calaris | 10.4.2011 | 11:53 am

    This is an absolutely inspirational, good luck at Kona Dustin!!

    P.S. It’s TCR not TC…

    Great catch; thank you! – FC

  11. Comment by FatboyTrysATri | 10.4.2011 | 11:53 am

    The Tour De Pink sounds amazing, but I’m gonna be in Las Vegas that weekend for my first century (proceeds go to the Nevada Cancer Institute).

    Donation will be on its way once I get paid! Good luck in Kona, Dustin!

  12. Comment by Hautacam | 10.4.2011 | 11:54 am

    Curse you, Fatty. Every time I am ready to part ways with you — after all, Team Fatty is now an international institution, and it’s hard for me to relate to your globetrotting, pro cyclist hob-nobbing, hardcore endurance-racing, free $7K bike-receiving internet celebrity lifestyle– you go and bust out a bomb like this one. Got me all teary and worked up. Well played.

    Count me in, Dustin. Best of luck. And get Fatty in a headlock at your first opportunity. With photo evidence!

    For what it’s worth, my celebrity lifestyle today included getting up at 4:30, writing for a while, making lunches for 3 kids, getting them up and off to school, then working my day job ’til 6pm, after which I’m now going to start work on tomorrow’s post, then work with kids on homework, then get to bed in time to hopefully repeat that cycle with some lucidity tomorrow. Envy me. – FC

  13. Comment by Phillip Gibb | 10.4.2011 | 11:55 am

    wow, all the best. I will donate!

  14. Comment by Liz | 10.4.2011 | 1:45 pm

    Just to clarify, this is the West Coast Tour de Pink in ten days?

    I am a breast cancer survivor and would be proud to represent Team Fatty at an event, but that is right around the corner, and I am on the east coast.

    No matter what, a great contest and what an epic effort by Dustin! Good luck in Kona!

    Yep, it’s the West Coast Tour de Pink in 10 days. I know that’s soon. Maybe we’ll have a bigger Team Fatty presence next year. It’s tricky deciding which of the many many good charities I should promote! – FC

  15. Comment by Bob | 10.4.2011 | 1:54 pm

    Four words:

    Eff Cancer!

    I’m in.

  16. Comment by Non bicyclist lurker | 10.4.2011 | 2:58 pm

    not at that web site, I’m not.

  17. Comment by Heber Chad | 10.4.2011 | 3:23 pm


    You’re awesome super stoked you and Fatty shared your story. Donation made…wish it could be more.


    RE the Pink Ride, that is literally 5 min (on a bike)from my Mom’s house…she is a breast cancer survior and I have no doubt would be willing to put someone up for the weekend if that would help.


  18. Comment by Erik | 10.4.2011 | 4:01 pm

    YSC is a great organization. They’ve helped my wife quite a bit through diagnosis, treatment, and recovery.

    Please donate, and feel good that your are helping a quality organization, and helping make the west coast version of this ride a success.

  19. Comment by Mark in Ottawa | 10.4.2011 | 7:29 pm

    I’ll be donating regardless but was just wondering if the contest is international (ie will ship to Canada)?

    Thanks a bunch for putting this together. I just finished reading three years straight of your archives and am humbled that you are able to share your life, passions, triumphs, and failures with such grace and humor. Many thanks!

    Mark (in Ottawa, Canada)

    No reason we can’t ship internationally on this one. My only question (couldn’t find an answer on the site) was whether it’s possible to donate from outside the US with this one. In other words, if you can donate, you can win. – FC

  20. Comment by Libby Hodges | 10.4.2011 | 9:22 pm

    So very cool!I’m part of the Spoke Spinners team riding in the Tour de Pink and for awhile we were neck in neck for fundraising with Weisers Army.With the help of you guys our team has been blasted out of first place,that’s AWESOME!I recently finished up treatment for my fourth time and want to take my hat off to all of you that help support this crappy disease,you are what we fight for!Thanks!
    Libby Hodges

  21. Comment by RodNeeds2Ride | 10.4.2011 | 9:27 pm


    Good luck Dustin – “You are better than you think you are, and you can do more than you think you can!”

    Sound familiar? GO GET ‘EM!

    Thanks Fatty!

  22. Comment by rudi | 10.4.2011 | 10:47 pm

    Go, man, go. Rooooting for you. Crazy as it is…You’re honoring that promise…..right on.

    Cheers, Rudi

  23. Comment by Alane Davis | 10.4.2011 | 10:49 pm


    I am a breast cancer survivor and this will be the third Tour de Pink I will ride in. In fact, I am one of the Tour de Pink riders who benefitted from Michelle’s hard work and the goodness of Giant when they gave me a bike to ride in my first ever Tour de Pink. In fact, I wrote about my experience meeting Michelle, her death, and what cycling has meant to me in my survivorship on my blog at It’s the post titled “for Michelle”. In addition, I run the Young Survival Coalition affiliate in Duluth, MN where we just held our 2nd annual Tour de Pink to raise funds for young survivors right here in Minnesota. I am a strong believer that everything happens for a reason, Fatty. I believe I was meant to ride bikes, to meet Michelle, to write my blog post which Dustin came across and wrote to me personally about, and to represent YSC, Team Fatty, and young breast cancer survivors at the Tour de Pink West Coast. if you believe things happen for a reason, too, let me know. I will be there no matter what, riding hard, dreaming big, and thanking my lucky stars that I’m still here 12 years after my Stage 3 cancer diagnosis. Thanks for the post. YSC and young women need your help.

  24. Comment by VJ | 10.4.2011 | 11:15 pm

    All the best Dustin!!

  25. Comment by Mark in Ottawa | 10.5.2011 | 7:28 am

    Just donated (they take donations for just about every country imaginable according to the pull-down bar in the payment page).

    Dustin – all the best! You’re a good man. I wish I could have donated more you’re so inspirational.

    Mark (in Ottawa, Canada)

  26. Comment by Kathleen@ForgingAhead | 10.5.2011 | 8:01 am

    Go Dustin! I’ve heard Kona is a true experience. Not your average Ironman.

    Fundraising super duo Fatty/Dustin is unstoppable. Watch out Cancer

  27. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 10.5.2011 | 8:45 am

    “For what it’s worth, …(yaada, yaada, yaada) repeat that cycle with some lucidity tomorrow. Envy me. – FC”

    And you have The Hammer to keep you humble. There’s half of us out there who envy you.

  28. Comment by cece | 10.5.2011 | 8:49 am

    Gotta go to work. Just put my make up on .and am now crying it off. I had to stop reading. i will finish reading later..and certainly donate.

  29. Comment by Allen | 10.5.2011 | 8:59 am

    Hi Elden,

    I’d love to ride for you at the Tour of the Pink. I am a fifteen-year old living in Cerritos, California and I know what it’s been like to lose a loved one, a friend to cancer. Joyson and I went to the same church, the same fellowship, the same school, the same boy scouts, and I truly miss his presence. My boy scouts troop participates in the Choc Walk every year and the previous scoutmaster gives a motivational speech to us try to meet our fundraising goals, by raising money so that we can support people like Joyson, Susan, and Michelle. I’d love to donate more to this cause but I don’t have a credit card! I’ll be sure to ask my dad when he comes home from his business trip. I believe supporting this cause, is one of the best things a human being can do. We’re helping to give someone a better chance to live. Even though, his fight was with leukemia, I believe we are all for the same cause – to F cancer up!

    Thanks Elden,
    you remind me much of my previous scoutmaster,


  30. Comment by Bike and the Fat Man | 10.5.2011 | 9:02 am

    Donation on the way! Good luck at reaching 20k and beyond. My dad passed from cancer and it was very difficult to see. I pray we all join together and rally to find a cure to this horrible disease.

  31. Pingback by Fat Cyclist » Blog Archive » Fatty Goes to France, Part VII: Disaster On the Way to La Berarde | 10.5.2011 | 9:45 am

    [...] « Help Me Help Dustin Keep a Promise, Win a Dream Bike [...]

  32. Comment by velorambling | 10.5.2011 | 11:20 am

    FIrst, can you still call yourself fat? Your skinny for crying out loud.
    I knew Michelle through work and met Dustin because of her. I immediately liked Michelle her wit and candor were so endearing that it was hard not to be drawn to her. I rode Tour de Pink in her honor last year and proudly wear my jersey proclaiming “Do what you want to do before it’s too late” I spoke with Dustin a few weeks ago at Interbike and wished him well in person. Reading your article inspired me to run a giveaway as well. I am not trying to steal money from Dustin but raise more for YSC an organization that I admire greatly. If you are interested in a chance at a Bell Volt Helmet come check out
    Keep up the good work and Good Luck Dustin.

  33. Comment by Laura | 10.5.2011 | 12:38 pm

    Dustin, I am so proud of you. I will definately make a donation. Thinking of you and wishing you all the best.

  34. Comment by TC | 10.5.2011 | 1:47 pm

    Donation is in! Cancer? Boo!

  35. Comment by Seth | 10.5.2011 | 1:56 pm

    Donation made…Dustin – good luck reaching your goals and more!

  36. Comment by DM | 10.5.2011 | 2:15 pm

    Dustin, You make me proud. Good Luck on Saturday and my the force be with you!

  37. Comment by Ricardo M Gotay | 10.5.2011 | 4:33 pm

    Team Fatty, thank you for sharing your stories with us. I’m fortunate that my wife is still with us and will be a 4 year Stage 3 Survivor this December. We have ridden the east coast TdP 3 times and had the privilege of meeting and getting to know beautiful Michelle. She along with so many other extraordinary people are always in my thoughts as to the amazing people I’ve had the honor to get to know because of this horrible thing called cancer. I wish you all the best in Kona, and in years to come. I hope that your stories continue to inspire people to be strong Young Survivors and caregivers.
    All the best, Ric

  38. Comment by Marey | 10.5.2011 | 6:30 pm

    GO DUDE!
    Just made my donation…and I’d love a bike, but it is a pleasure to donate. My daughter is a childhood cancer survivor…daily chemo for 2 1/2 years…I know the struggle but not the loss- your story made me cry.
    I’ll be following your number throughout IRONMAN!

  39. Comment by bacmapei | 10.5.2011 | 8:11 pm

    Direct Donation made + purchased some Twix Six stuff. It’s been great to have the updates from Dustin. He (and Michelle) were on my mind earlier this summer. I donated a luminary at our local Cancer Society “Relay for Life” in honor of Michelle. All the best in Kona.

  40. Comment by Christine | 10.6.2011 | 11:32 am

    GO Dustin! YOU Rock!!! Thank you for doing this!

  41. Comment by jake | 10.6.2011 | 11:37 am

    Hi Dustin, thank you for a moving story and great post. If you are still in need of a rider for Tour de Pink, I can do it. I’m based in San Francisco and I can work a way to getting down there. Let me know.


  42. Comment by Carl | 10.6.2011 | 9:32 pm

    Donation complete! The ride reports from France were tremendous.

  43. Pingback by Fat Cyclist » Blog Archive » A Note About Dustin, and A Note From Dustin | 10.7.2011 | 7:01 am

    [...] You can read the whole piece here (and if you haven’t, you should), but the short version is that he told her he would do this race. And since the Young Survival Coalition’s Tour de Pink was important to Michelle, he wants to raise $20,000 for them. [...]

  44. Comment by Michelle Monteith | 10.12.2011 | 6:12 pm

    Congratulations Dustin! Donation is on the way. I am doing IM NY/NJ next year and hope to raise money for the YSC as well – I’m 6 year survivor and 2 time TdP rider. Enjoy your accomplishment.

  45. Pingback by Fat Cyclist » Blog Archive » I’ve Never Suffered as Badly as When… | 10.13.2011 | 8:35 am

    [...] from Fatty About Dustin’s Young Survival Coalition Tour de Pink Contest: Dustin set out to do three things to honor Michelle last weekend. For two of them, all the work was up to him. For the third — raising $20,000 [...]

  46. Pingback by Why Ironman? | philippiansfourthirteen | 10.14.2011 | 8:52 pm

    [...] am enjoying sharing pieces of my story with you, but tonight I’m sharing his.  The story of his promise and his race day at Kona are incredible! Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailLike this:LikeBe the first [...]


Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.