A Note from Fatty: If you’re local to Utah County or SLC, you should come do the Elevate 5K this Saturday, April 20. Proceeds will go to benefit three local families engaged in serious battles against cancer. In addition to the run, there’ll be giveaways for some pretty amazing prizes, as well as an auction with trips, tickets to games, bikes, and lots more. Click here to sign up.
Let’s Get Practical
The swag box for the 100 Miles of Nowhere has some pretty excellent swag: Something awesome from Banjo Brothers. A free, exclusive viewing of Singletrack High. And there will be more. Oh yes indeed.
Today, though, I’d like to tell you about the stuff in the swag box that you’ll more than likely want to use during the event itself.
Let us check them out.
CarboRocket 333: Half Evil Endurance Fuel
333 is the most potent, complete and effective endurance fuel on the planet. Use it as your stand-alone race and training fuel. No need for messy gels, gooey gummies, expensive bars or clumsy food. Just drink and go and go and go.
It’s available in 1 kilo containers of raspberry or lemonade (with caffeine) and orange (no caffeine). A third of you will get orange flavor, a third will get lemonade (my personal favorite), and a third of you will get raspberry.
And I believe you’ll discover what a lot of hardcore cyclists have found out: my friend Brad — the inventor of CR 333 is — is a half-evil genius. If you’ve ever had gastric issues hot on the heels of drinking some other sports drink, you may well find the answer to your problem right here.
100 Miles of Nowhere participants will each get a one-serving packet of CR333, which is enough to give you — you guessed it — 333 power-packed calories (about as many calories as you get in three gel packets) in an easy-to-drink bottle.
Specialized HydroFlo Bottle
Little things make a big difference to me when I’m biking. And — for some reason — having a good water bottle makes a huge difference to me.
For a long time, I maintained there was no such thing as a good water bottle, for the simple reason that for a long time there really wasn’t a good water bottle out there.
With the Specialized Purist HydroFlo bottle, though, I have found a bottle I really, genuinely, truly love. They’re super easy to squeeze. Simple and intuitive to lock and unlock. They don’t have the lousy plastic taste most bottles lend to whatever you’re drinking. The caps don’t leak.
And they’re all clear and cool-looking, too. And in short, I just love this bottle (I even made a video about why).
Now, these are pretty expensive bottles — around $15.00, usually, and a really great deal at $12.00, but we’ll be including one in your 100 Miles of Nowhere swag box for free.
While it isn’t shown here (because we’re busy adapting art to the HydroFlo bottle’s unorthodox screening requirements), your bottle will have a version of this year’s 100 Miles of Nowhere logo on it.
Believe me, after trying this bottle out, you’re going to get all snobby and standoffish about all your other bottles. I apologize in advance.
Honey Stinger Waffles and Bars
I believe it’s no surprise that I’m a fan of Honey Stinger Waffles. Frankly, I’d be a fan of them even if they weren’t a fantastic, easy-to-eat energy food that sits flat and cozy — like it’s not even there — in your jersey pocket.
Let’s face it, if they wrapped them into a cone shape and put ice cream in them, I’d think they were pretty much the best part of the ice cream cone.
But they’re energy food. Delicious, don’t-get-sick-of-it energy food. And you’re going to get a Lemon Organic Stinger Waffle in your 100 Miles of Nowhere swag box.
You’re also going to get But that’s not all. Nosirree.
You’re also going to get a Blueberry Buzz Energy Bar. But “energy bar” is a bad name for what this is, because it conjures up images of other, inferior energy bars.
And this thing is way too delicious to be thought of alongside those other energy bars. For one thing, the bar itself tastes good on its own merits. For another, it’s coated on the underside with a sort of white-choclatey yogurt frostingish stuff that makes this taste more like a dessert than something you should be eating while you ride your bike.
But you should be eating it while you ride your bike. Specifically, you should be eating it while you ride your bike 100 miles, to nowhere.
DZ Nuts / Bliss
If there’s one product you are absolutely positively going to need when riding your 100 Miles of Nowhere race, it’s DZ Nuts. Or, if you’re a woman, DZ Bliss. (Although, honestly, both kinds work just fine for both genders.)
Because if you don’t use it, you’re likely to suffer from some chafing problems. And those get worse as the miles wear on. And once they start getting worse, they get a lot worse. And suddenly, your silly day of insane riding for a good cause has turned into a Slog of Pain.
And you don’t want that. And I don’t want that for you. And Dave Zabriskie doesn’t want that for anyone.
So, in each 100 Miles of Nowhere swag box will be included a sample pack of DZ Nuts and DZ Bliss. Try them both, decide which you like best. And don’t feel bad if your answer is surprising. It ships in a plain brown wrapper, from what I understand.
Get Ready to Register
Believe it or not, I still haven’t revealed all the stuff you’ll be getting as part of your 100 Miles of Nowhere Swag Box. But this will have to do ’til my Wednesday post, where I will unveil the registration link and everything else you’ll be getting.
Look for a post — and for registration to open — Wednesday, April 17, at 9:00am CT.
I want to take a break today from talking about the cool swag you’re going to get by registering for the 100 Miles of Nowhere to actually talk about the 100 Miles of Nowhere itself.
You know, a little bit about what the race is and who it benefits. And some examples of some of my favorite race reports.
I’d also like to encourage you to describe, in the comments section, what you’re thinking you might do for your own version of the 100 Miles of Nowhere.
Where It Came From
The 100 Miles of Nowhere started as a stunt. It was just me, by myself, wondering if I could make myself do 100 miles, in one sitting, on the rollers. I bet a bunch of you that I could, and in the process raised a little money for LiveStrong.
The next year, more of you did it. And then I started asking companies to sponsor it by donating 500 of something they make to be sent out in a swag box. And now it sells out in less than a day.
The 100 Miles of Nowhere has traditionally been a fundraiser for LiveStrong. Last year, when LiveStrong took on Camp Kesem — a foundation that puts on weeklong camps across the US for kids of parents with cancer — as a partner, I asked LiveStrong if we could have the 100 Miles of Nowhere funds be directed specifically toward this really fantastic cause.
They were cool with that.
And so now, as you ride around in circles or squares or in your basement or back and forth or whatever else for 100 miles, the silliness of what you’re doing is beautifully offset by an extremely concrete and specific thing: you’re making it possible for some kid — a kid who’s had to live with a parent with cancer — to have an amazingly fun, carefree, awesome week at no cost to that kid’s parents.
By participating in the 100 Miles of Nowhere, you become an agent of good karma. Which is the very best kind of agent there is.
So What Do You Do In The 100 Miles of Nowhere?
Of course, the first 100 Miles of Nowhere was on rollers, and I literally went nowhere. But other — more creative — people wanted to extend this idea and make it more interesting. So they took it outside and rode a very short course, over and over, for 100 miles.
And sometimes, they sent me their stories afterward, which I found very entertaining. So entertaining, in fact, that I often would post them right here.
And so that became part of the tradition too.
This has evolved to the point where you could say the steps for performing your 100 Miles of Nowhere are as follows:
- Register for the race. Registration will open April April 17, at 9:00am CT. Mark your calendars, because registration is limited to 500.
- Define your category. For example, your category might be “Men, age 40-45, in suburban Santa Rosa, riding a recumbent around the block.” Your category should be excruciatingly specific. So specific, in fact, that there’s no chance that anyone but you will win it.
- Ride your race. On June 1 or thenabouts (lots of people including me sometimes have to do it on a different day, due to conflicting schedules), do what you said you’d do. Be tough about it. But have fun, too. Remember, this is to traditional bike racing as the sillywalk is to running a marathon.
- Tell your story. If what you did was interesting, write it up. Include pictures and video. Send it to me — my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. I can’t publish every single story that comes my way, but I do publish a lot of them.
What Are Some Awesome Examples of Stories?
Everyone who does the 100 Miles of Nowhere has done something ridiculously epic. There are some folks, though, who have truly raised this crazy event to an art form. Here are a few:
100 Miles of Nowhere from Noodle on Vimeo.
Vehemence of Suckage – 100 Miles of Nowhere from Noodle on Vimeo.
What Will Your Story Be?
I expect that some of you have some grand ideas for what — and where — your 100 Miles of Nowhere will be.
Tell us about them.
And good luck.
If you were to look at all of The Hammer’s and my bikes, all lined up in a row, you’d notice a few things in common. They all use a variation of the same saddle (Selle Italia SLR). All the mountain bikes use the same kind of pedals (Time ATACs), and all the road bikes use the same kind of pedals (Speedplay X).
And every single bike — road or mountain — has a Banjo Brothers Small Seat Bag, holding the stuff you need to repair a flat.
Because once you find something that works perfectly, you stick with it.
And that’s the way things are with Banjo Brothers. As in, both their stuff and the partnership I’ve had with them ever since, pretty much, when this blog started around eight (!) years ago (like, I first reviewed their stuff in 2006, and they started sponsoring contests back in 2005) .
They’re good people, making good stuff. To hold your bike stuff.
And I couldn’t be more pleased that for the 2013 100 Miles of Nowhere (more about it in yesterday’s post), they’re continuing the tradition of putting something awesome in participants’ bags.
You Might Win This . . . Or This . . . Or This . . . .
What will The Banjo Brothers include in this year’s 100 Miles of Nowhere Swag Box?
Well, you’ll just have to see, because they’re going to provide a bunch of a bunch of different things, and which you get will pretty much just come down to luck.
That said, you’re going to get one of the following things, and all of them are absolutely useful things any cyclist would want.
Jersey Pocket Cycling Wallet
I know it’s quite rare, but from time to time you will encounter someone who rides with a phone in their jersey.
If — perchance — you are one of those very odd and unusual people who both has a mobile cellular telephone device and you sometimes like to have it with you, just in case you feel like pulling over to the side of the road and making a phone call to a loved one just to tell that person how important they are to you, well, this item might be of interest to you. See, it’s a protective pouch with a touch-screen-compatible window, and pockets for ID and a key. It’s constructed of waterproof fabric with a full-length zipper, and the whole thing fits nicely into a jersey pocket.
What a weird idea for a product. i can’t imagine why anyone would want one of these. (Except me. I want one, bad, and will use it every single day I’m on my bike.)
250 of you will get these.
Top Tube Bag
The Hammer uses one of these. Well, in fact she actually uses something like one of these, except made by someone else, because at the time I didn’t know Banjo Brothers also made these.
She uses them when racing, because it’s a lot easier for her to grab a gel or food or whatever else she’s eating from a conveniently-situated pouch nestled on top of the top tube than it is for her to rummage around in a jersey pocket.
But here’s the thing: the one she has sucks. It flops around and lists to one side and collapses in oneself.
This one, on the other hand, has rubber backed frame straps cut to length for a variety of top-tube sizes. The clear-top allows you too see what’s inside. Banjo Eric has been known to fill his with a few sleeves of energy chews during the epic Almanzo 100 bike Space in Spring Valley, MN. Sure, it’s a little messy, but the bags can be wiped clean, the food is ready to go, and there are no wrappers to deal with.
100 of you will get these.
Roadie-Sized Seat Bag
This is what I’ve got on all my bikes. All of them. Including my mountain bikes. It’s one of the first seven bags brought to market by Banjo Brothers, and it’s a timeless classic. It carries a spare tube, tire levers, and CO2 cartridges.
This bag is simple, tough and effective. And the two-strap design with no seat-post velcro means it won’t rub against your shorts. Plus, the trim’s reflective and it has a tab to hold a rear flashy.
150 of you will get these.
And You’ll Also Get This
I’ve got a feeling that once you spend a little time at the Banjo Brothers site, you’ll find that you want more than a thing or two from them. And that’s cool, because in addition to whatever else you get in your swag box from the Banjo Brothers, you’re also going to get a 40%-off coupon good for a shopping spree at Banjo Brothers’ online store.
Nice work, Banjo Brothers. I believe entry to the 100 Miles of Nowhere is going to quite quickly indeed.
It’s time to start thinking about the Sixth Annual 100 Miles of Nowhere. The race without a place. The event where 500 people participate…all by ourselves.
You’ll pay $95 (which includes domestic shipping this year, so your total cost is actually down from last year) for the privilege of riding your rollers, trainer, or a very small course (like around the block or up and down a hill) for 100 miles.
Then — should you feel so inclined — you’ll send in your story of your 100 miles, and I will post as many as I can. Often, following the 100 Miles of Nowhere, I post stories every couple hours for a few days. It’s a pretty fantastic way for us to share with the world what fools we are.
The profits from your entry go to LiveStrong, which will turn around and give that same amount to Camp Kesem — camps all across the U.S. dedicated to giving kids of parents with cancer a week of carefree fun, at no cost to them. My twins went to the Southern Utah Camp Kesem last year, and it was the highlight of their summer. Check out their report here.
As part of your registration for this event, you’ll be getting a very cool box of swag, not to mention the event t-shirt, which I’m happy to now reveal:
I swear, the Twin Six guys just keep getting more awesome every year. I love this design.
Over the next few days (including today), I’ll be describing some of the very cool things you’ll be getting as part of the 100 Miles of Nowhere swag box. Assuming you’re already sold on the idea of doing this ridiculous event, though, here are a couple dates to keep in mind:
- Registration: The registration for this event will open April 17, 9am CT. It usually sells out within a few hours and is strictly limited to 500 people, so you will not want to miss signing up.
- Race day: The “official” race day for the 100 Miles of Nowhere is June 1. Since, however, you’re on your own with this, that date has some flexibility. I, for example, will be in Moab with WBR’s Africa in Moab adventure. So I’ve got to figure out a different day or weekend.
So, start getting ready to sign up, a week from tomorrow. And in between now and then, I’m going to reveal — and in today’s case, review — some of the things you’re going to win as part of the 100 Miles of Nowhere Swag Box.
Singletrack High: The Review
The Hammer and I are in a weird stage of life right now. The stage where our kids are growing up. Some are working. One is married and has a kid of his own. One is in college. Two are in elementary school.
And a couple are in high school, which is somehow weirder than all the other things put together. Because high school affects kids in big, permanent ways (click here for a sobering piece on this).
Which is part of why I loved Pedal Born Picture’s Singletrack High, a documentary following the training, racing, and learning of various kids at different schools in the NorCal Cycling League.
Hey, why don’t you check out the preview to this show:
As I watched this film, I found myself saying to myself (over and over and over), “I wish there would have been something like this back at Fruita Monument High School when I was growing up.”
Of course, mountain bikes hadn’t exactly gone mainstream yet. And I was no kind of athlete.
Or at least, I didn’t think I was. I never really tried to find out, since the sports available to me didn’t really appeal. And a big part of the point of this documentary is showing how kids from a lot of different backgrounds are growing and learning and basically being fantastic human beings while riding their bikes.
Most of the documentary is interviews with the kids. There’s Tess, who used to worry about whether people would think biking is cool and whether helmets looked weird, but is now a rising star in her team and wears a Rivendell cycling cap when she’s in her room.
“Prior to this, I think she felt a little isolated at school,” says her stepdad.
Tess says about the team, “I think a good team would see cycling as a family. It brings us all together. We’re different ages and different backgrounds, but we all want to ride and race. Cycling had given me some of my best friends.”
I love hearing that.
There’s Carlos, who rides for the Luther Burbank Bike Team.
Before he joined, he says he thought, “I’m not really used to being in the mountains and I’m not into sports. I’d rather just go to school and then hang out,” and thought of himself as “more of a street person.”
An assistant coach — this team all volunteer-coached by police officers — this team to the Bad News Bears, saying, “We came into the league with broken down bikes and skater helmets. We see kids in other teams riding $6,000 S-Works bikes. We didn’t have, at one point, $6,000 worth of bikes in our whole inventory.”
And then there’s Cody, 15, who’s new to his team and training his first MTB race.
Cody was my personal favorite. I liked his quiet, thoughtful attitude. I liked his goal: to do a little better each race. He wanted to finish a race first, then maybe finish faster than last. But more than anything, he just wanted to push himself.
That’s a well-grounded kid.
There are other kids too — some up-and-comers, some just happy to be out riding. I kind of get the feeling that different people will find themselves identifying with different kids in the show, and rooting for them all.
The documentary follows the kids through different races, progressing through the season, working toward — and sometimes beyond — their goals. And it’s fun, hearing some of them describing the oddness of a bike race. Carlos laughs, saying it was like seeing a bunch of guys wearing Speedos out in the middle of the desert. Which, really, is pretty much exactly right.
There were a couple of things about the race footage that I really liked. First, it looks fantastic. This is a really beautifully-shot film.
Second, I liked the way it doesn’t just follow the race leaders and focus on who’s winning. There are a lot of heroes in this film and not all of them are crossing the finish line first.
Seeing the Film
Should you see this film? Only if you like bikes and seeing normal kids doing great things. So, yeah, you should see the film.
So where can you see it? Well, it’s scheduled to play at a number of places across the country. Click here for the where and when. Or you can host your own screening — click here for details.
Or — and this is the part I’m really excited about — if you register for the 100 Miles of Nowhere, you’ll get a special password and will be able to watch it on Vimeo from the comfort of your own home (perhaps as you ride your trainer for 100 miles?).
Can anyone else in the whole world do that? No, they cannot. But you’ll be able to, which makes you even more special than you thought.
And That’s Not All
I’ll be revealing more cool stuff 100 Miles of Nowhere participants will be receiving as part of their swag box tomorrow. Be sure to check it out.
UPDATE: All the new t-shirts are on sale now. Here are quick links to the various shirts:
It has been rumored, from time to time, that I am a fan of pie. This, of course, is the least unlikely thing that has ever been said about me.
Of course I like pie. In particular, I like banana cream pie. And key lime pie. And cheesecake, which I hereby declare is – the misleading “cake” part of its name not withstanding — definitely pie, seeing as how it’s pie-shaped and has not one bit of flour in it.
I like pumpkin pie, every kind of berry pie, apple pie, pecan pie, and rhubarb pie.
Oh, and I like quiche, which is really just egg-and-bacon pie.
There is very little chance, when you get right down to it, that I will not like any given pie.
And I believe I am not the only member of Team Fatty who feels this way.
Which — incredibly enough — brings me to the first of a very exciting pair of announcements.
The Most Awesome FatCyclist.Com T-Shirt, Ever, On Sale NOW
Every month, on the sixth of the month, my good friends at Twin Six sell a very limited-edition t-shirt — their t-shirt of the month.
These shirts always sell out fast. And then they’re gone.
Well, for the first time ever, the Twin Six T-shirt of the Month (Women’s sizes too) is this:
Here, have a closer look at the image that goes on that shirt:
I love this. I just love it. I’m going to wear it every day for a week as soon as I get it.
Which brings up the very important and salient question: how and when can you get this shirt? Well, the thing is, it’s a very limited-edition shirt, and once they’re gone, they’re gone forever. So you won’t want to dilly-dally in your ordering.
Here’s the when, how, and how much of procuring one of these fine shirts:
The Original FatCyclist.Com T-Shirt Is Back
The second announcement is that the original FatCyclist.com t-shirt — which hasn’t been available for years and years and years, and of which only a couple hunnerd were ever made — will be available starting tomorrow, in both men’s and women’s sizing. Like the T-Shirt of the Month t-shirt, it costs $24. Check it out — back first:
And here’s the front:
The Original FatCyclist.Com t-shirt is the shirt I wear more often than any other. I am, for all you know, wearing one right now.
If you pick both of these shirts up, and you’re one of the first 100 people to do so, you’ll get a nice little bonus: a free 2012 100 Miles of Nowhere bottle — which is a super-nice Specialized Purist bottle, and a $10 value.
You’ll suddenly have so much FatCyclist.Com stuff you’ll have to be careful to not wear it on consecutive days, so people won’t start thinking you’ve joined a cult.
And In Conclusion…
Head over to Twin Six to pick up your t-shirt of the month (men’s sizing / women’s sizing) and the original FatCyclist.com t-shirt (men’s sizing / women’s sizing).
And you will always be well-dressed and hydrated, for the rest of your life. Plus, you’ll look slimmer too, what with the shirts being black and all.
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