25 Hours in Frog Hollow, Part IX: Podiums and Ill-Timed Naps

11.21.2013 | 9:40 am

A Note from Fatty: Next week, November 25-26, I’ll be doing a special pre-order for the new Fat Cyclist long-sleeve t-shirt. Check it out:


I love this design. It’s both beautiful and an excellent mission statement. 

In addition to this new design, I’ll be bringing back the painted-look FatCyclist.com design, this time as a long-sleeve T. And the FatCyclist holiday sweater-ish long-sleeve T. 

So, look for the announcement and links to the Twin Six site this Monday, November 25. You’ll only have two days to pre-order, and once they’re gone, they’re gone. 

The t-shirts will ship 12/12 to 12/17, so if you’re in the US, they will be arrive by Christmas. 

And when you buy one, you’re going to be helping me make ends meet while I’m writing Fight Like Susan. Which is awfully cool of you.

25 Hours in Frog Hollow, Part IX: Podiums and Ill-Timed Naps

It is such a strange feeling to be done with a big race. Somehow, by riding my bike for just under 26 hours, racing around this loop had become my whole universe. Somehow, suddenly not having to race seemed strange. Foreign.

And incredibly luxurious.

I cleaned up, got into some jeans, a t-shirt, and a jacket — so exquisite to not be wearing a jersey and bike shorts with a damp chamois — and walked around (I had tried to help tear down camp, but Zach, Trisha, and Brooks laughed at my uselessness and told me to go relax).

There was a free lunch — loaded up tostadas from Costa Vida. The Hammer and I picked ours up, then sat down in the dirt to eat, killing time ’til the awards ceremony.

Within moments my head was nodding forward. My food mostly untouched. I have a singular ability to fall asleep instantly, and that ability was asserting itself, big time. 

Then I was startled awake by The Hammer, who was squealing, “That’s Jill Homer!” You see, The Hammer is Jill Homer’s biggest fan.

So we went and talked to Jill, finding that — like us — she and her boyfriend Beat had done the race solo and ridden it together. Unlike us, Jill had crashed out of the race, finishing ten laps. 

Meanwhile, The Hammer used all her willpower to not ask for an autograph.

Which makes me think: the coolest Spreecast I could ever do would be one where I just have The Hammer and Jill swap stories about what it’s like to be really nice, normal women who also happen to love doing monster endurance events.

Don’t you think?

On the Podium

It was time for awards to be handed out. Of course, it was no surprise at all that The Hammer won her Women’s Solo Singlespeed division: 

IMG 1086

What we didn’t know for sure — and which the announcer was very cool about announcing — was that The Hammer had also put in the fastest overall women’s solo time. Since she wasn’t registered in the geared solo division though, she wasn’t on that podium. So I have taken the liberty of slightly modifying the official results:


And for the singlespeed men? Well, they called Jamon up for first place — no surprise.

Then they called Kenny up for second place — no surprise.

And then they called me up for third place. 

IMG 1083

Which was a surprise. 

I had — without knowing it — finished my 17th lap just five minutes ahead of El Freako:


To be clear, El Freako’s (aka Jeff) lap times are consistently faster than mine. But sometime during the middle of the night, he did a 4:33 lap. Was he sleeping? Fixing a mechanical? Tending to an injury? I dunno. But this was definitely a tortoise-and-the-hair moment. 

And as a result, I got this very cool Lezyne Port-a-Shop toolkit as a prize. 

IMG 7719

With a retail value of $139, that’s by far the nicest third prize I’ve ever seen at a race. And now this lives in my truck, and I have pretty much every tool I could need to fix anything.

So now it’s especially sad that I’m such a miserable mechanic.

Inopportune Naptime

And then it was time to head home. Now, we were smart enough not to attempt the four-hour drive back to Alpine. No. We instead were just going to do the forty-minute drive back to Kenny and Heather’s house.

By the time we got on pavement, I was having a really hard time keeping my eyes trained. “I think I may need to pull over,” I told The Hammer. 

And then my head drooped forward. Followed by The Hammer screaming. 

Which woke me up pretty thoroughly. 

You know what would be a good idea at 24-hour races? Designated drivers for afterward.

Weeks Later

And now, for the first time since Spring, The Hammer and I have no races coming up. Nothing to train for. 

It feels wonderful.

The only problem is, I still can’t feel my index or middle fingers in my right hand.


  1. Comment by Brian in VA | 11.21.2013 | 12:24 pm

    Great report as always. Congrats to The Hammer for her awesomeness and to you for pulling out a podium despite all your efforts not to.

    Have you tried a massage for your finger numbness? Mine seems to be the result of a muscle in my upper back and a neck and shoulders rub down by a massage therapist has restored my ability to do things with my hands, again.

    I hope the feeling comes back soon!

    Best wishes to you in the off season!

  2. Comment by Liz M. | 11.21.2013 | 12:30 pm

    Congratulations to Fatty and the Hammer! Enjoy the off season and best wishes with the writing. Looking forward to the shirts — do you think one would make a good contribution to the family Yankee gift swap?

  3. Comment by Clydesteve | 11.21.2013 | 12:34 pm

    Elden & Lisa – Congrats from Italy. You would have loved to see all the freds out this morning cycling up the Adriatic coast.

  4. Comment by TominAlbany | 11.21.2013 | 12:42 pm

    Congratulations, The Hammer!!!!!
    Congratulations, Elden “she doesn’t really call me fatty”!

    Amazing performances.

    Here’s what I really want to know, Elden. What’s your current bodyweight? You’ve got a nice chart monitoring your weight-loss efforts from the spring. I think you should post your weight throughout the winter! What say you?

  5. Comment by Doug (Way upstate NY) | 11.21.2013 | 1:04 pm


  6. Comment by Guest | 11.21.2013 | 1:11 pm

    Re: the shirt – Full disclosure – I have a dirty mind, but the shirt is also great subtle innuendo.

    Re: your hands – sucks to get old, no?

    Re: 3rd place – nice job, great prize!

    Re getting old: I should do a post (probably will soon) on my growing list of aches and pains. – FC

  7. Comment by the Putti | 11.21.2013 | 1:13 pm

    I would pay money for a Jill Homer/Hammer Speedcast. Please make that happen.

  8. Comment by Jim Tolar | 11.21.2013 | 1:18 pm

    First, congratulations on your podium and on the Hammer’s two wins! As usual, great report on the event. The part about Lisa and Jill really made me chuckle because:

    I’ve been reading Jill’s posts at least as long as yours. I’m obviously a big fan of both. Two years ago, two of my kids and I (and 10 or so of our friends) were on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in the second week of October, staying at the Lodge. We were there on a Friday night, staying until the next morning when we would all hike Rim2Rim to the South side, a pretty-much biannual event for my family.

    We were all milling about on the patio in the Lodge, having a drink and enjoying the views, when I saw this young lady walk by. “Self, I think that is Jill Homer!” I said to myself. I don’t think I actually squealed, but I might have. There she was! That’s right, she and her father do Rim2Rim each year! HOLY CRAP!! It probably IS Jill!

    I was a little hesitant to fan-bomb her out of nowhere. I mean, I’m older than her father, and she’s on a personal vacation/family activity. It would freak her out, invade her personal space, and probably end up getting me beat up by her Dad. So, I did what any self-respecting fan-geek would do. I sent my daughter over to her to say “Are you Jill Homer? My Dad really loves your writing…” while I watched from a safe distance. Of course as soon as I saw Jill nod her head that she was indeed “Jill Homer”, I abandoned all pretense and totally fan-bombed her and her gracious family. I might have pushed my daughter aside in the process. I’m not proud of that part.

    Jill and her family were very gracious, indeed more than gracious. We saw each other a couple of times again during the evening and they didn’t once call security. In fact, Jill and I have exchanged a couple of e-mails since and she has commented on my daughter’s blog post about the Rim2Rim hike (http://realestatetangent.com/rim-to-rim-a-tragicomedy/). Jill is, as you and The Hammer already know, good people.

    Anyway, it made me laugh to hear about the Hammer geeking out about Jill.

    Well done to everyone.


  9. Comment by J | 11.21.2013 | 1:26 pm

    Awesome shirt and awesome prizes! I am jealous of both now.

  10. Comment by eclecticdeb | 11.21.2013 | 1:48 pm

    Love the t-shirt, and now that the rain has finally started in NoCal, long sleeves are most welcome.

    Congrats on a great ride and even better finish. Both you and The Hammer are an inspiration, makes me almost wish to do an endurance ride. Then I slap myself back to reality.

  11. Comment by Mark in Bremerton | 11.21.2013 | 1:59 pm

    Excellent! Congrats to you both! I don’t think anyone really expected less and we weren’t disappointed. Except… About the photo way back in Part II of Zach numbing and stitching his own wound. Was he riding? Setting up camp? I thought we’d get a little something on that.

  12. Comment by rich | 11.21.2013 | 2:09 pm

    Congrats to both of you….based on some of your posts about your mechanical ability the prize you won made me smile…
    Scary stuff about dozing off. I was driving cross country to visit family and at some random truck stop I asked a truck driver what the secret to staying awake was and he said sunflower seeds.
    Not sure why, but it really works…

  13. Comment by Jeff Dieffenbach | 11.21.2013 | 2:20 pm

    I don’t know if “But this was definitely a tortoise-and-the-hair moment” was intentional or not, but based on the absence of the latter on the top of your head, Fatty, is it safe to assume that you are the tortoise not only because of the race outcome?

  14. Comment by Christina | 11.21.2013 | 2:30 pm

    The Hammer looks like Flavor Flav with that medal on. Awesome.

    This is going to be a hard choice, since Twin Six released that Lantern Rouge shirt today. That’s really my cycling motto. But, supporting the dude who makes me laugh and feel the speed of his awesome cycling is also worth something.

    Congrats all around!

  15. Comment by leroy | 11.21.2013 | 2:31 pm

    Congratulations to you both!

    I once let my dog drive when I was sleepy.

    I woke to him singing a mashup of “I Can’t Drive 55″ and “Jesus Take The Wheel.”

    I wasn’t sleepy after that.

  16. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 11.21.2013 | 2:42 pm

    Another great report and maybe appropriate that it happens as we go into Thanksgiving Week. Thank you for another year of making us smile, inspiring us to be better than we are, to challenge ourselves, and to give.

    Looking forward to the Lenzyne Kit as a prize in the upcoming WBR challenge(like you’re going to use it). Please don’t get it dirty.

    According to Wife#.667 the average T-Day meal before dessert is 2800 calories. Heck if you look at Fatty’s Strava detail that’s only 6hrs of Frog Hollow. http://www.strava.com/activities/93351229
    Go ahead have some pie! Happy Thanksgiving everyone.images-21.jpg

  17. Comment by Bryan (not that one) | 11.21.2013 | 2:58 pm

    Congratulations Hammer! Congratulations Fatty! Great read as always. :-)

  18. Comment by Mike from Melbourne | 11.21.2013 | 3:07 pm

    Congratulations ! I’ve done a few 24 hour walks and 4 Ironman triathlons but I can’t imagine riding my MTzb for 25 hours. Enjoy the well deserved rest

  19. Comment by Sunny | 11.21.2013 | 5:03 pm


  20. Comment by ScottyCycles | 11.22.2013 | 2:04 am

    Congrats to you both and now without any goals to train for you can simply enjoy some “soul riding” this Winter.

  21. Comment by slo joe | 11.22.2013 | 6:08 am

    Kudos to both of you especially to the Hammer for her “one for the books” achievement,

    Time for the ergon grips me thinks.

    And yah ….Jill and Hammer interview.

  22. Comment by Shugg McGraw | 11.22.2013 | 6:10 am

    Browsing the Frog Hollow results I see that there were only 2 finishers in the solo women’s singlespeed. We know all about who came first. Second was Amber with 7 laps. She might have improved her performance had she not taken 14:46:20 for her 5th lap.

  23. Comment by Dave T | 11.22.2013 | 8:29 am

    Congratulations to you both, great write up as usual. Nice looking tee I might have to buy several, you can never have enough fatty gear.

  24. Comment by Corrine | 11.22.2013 | 9:23 am

    Another great race report! I love these stories. I think a spreecast with Lisa and Jill would be awesome. Get some rest and don’t put on that extra weight this winter.

  25. Comment by Slo Joe | 11.22.2013 | 9:32 am

    And for those who enjoy reading race reports, Sandy Earl and her race at the World 24 Hour ….always a fun read.


  26. Comment by AKChick | 11.22.2013 | 12:07 pm

    OH PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE do a spreecast with Jill and The Hammer! PLEASE! I’m not above begging. I follow Jill on Twitter. They came to Alaska for a little winter bike race earlier this year where her boyfriend biked to Nome. :) Jill and aforementioned boyfriend have also completed the Susitna 100, which I think should be on your bucket list. (please? if you were okay with 2 labs and a lab mix with a crotch sniffing problem, you could stay with us)

  27. Comment by AKChick | 11.22.2013 | 12:10 pm

    Also, are there options to support you directly with a donation to you if we don’t want a long sleeve T or shirt? I want to help get the book completed and out!

  28. Comment by Christina | 11.22.2013 | 12:30 pm

    ^ ooh, what she said. I’d kickstarter the crap out of a Fatty book, with no rewards needed.

  29. Comment by Marcel Beaudoin | 11.22.2013 | 1:13 pm


  30. Comment by Flat tired | 11.22.2013 | 3:22 pm

    That third prize tool set is awesome, too bad the bag isn’t big enough to fit a mechanic in there too, LOL…

  31. Comment by SteveB | 11.22.2013 | 3:25 pm

    I’m wondering what a book that has had the crap kickstarter’ed out of it would look like, but I do like the idea.

    Also, its N+1 day for me.

    Now I need to cut out of work early to fit in a ride.

  32. Comment by Carl | 11.22.2013 | 7:14 pm

    You guys are amazing!

  33. Comment by Cyclingjimbo | 11.23.2013 | 9:11 am

    Great report and amazing performances from all of you, Kenny included. The Hammer is simply awesome, and we all love hearing about her performances.

    So, Fatty, one question for you – if you won that really nice tool kit for third place in the men’s single speed division, what did The Hammer win for her first place finish? Fair’s fair, after all.

    Great rides; thanks for the usual great reading.

  34. Comment by Nancy_in_MN | 11.23.2013 | 5:38 pm

    I’m with @Christina, @AKChick, @Marcel Beaudoin, @SteveB, and probably scores of others! When Christina said:
    “I’d kickstarter the crap out of a Fatty book, with no rewards needed.”
    She nailed it!

    KICKSTARTER is a great idea for this project! I’m still gonna need both of those T-shirts from TwinSix, “need” being a relative term.

  35. Comment by Scott | 11.25.2013 | 1:26 pm

    I have to agree about the 17th lap being a tough one. I was ready to call it quits at 16, but I went by our pit and Amber was ready to head out for another lap and asked me to join her. That lap was painful, but it was great being able to ride that lap together…and it moved me into 5th in the singlespeed category.Bye the way, we were the other couple in the singlespeed category. In defense of Amber…only 2 women actually had the guts to do this on a singlespeed. She has only been riding a singlespeed for a month and a half and was very sick. I think she did an amazing job getting out there and riding 89 miles on a singlespeed, especially when she was sick. You may want to consider giving kudos to people who are willing to push themselves beyond their normal limits. I’m very proud of her.

  36. Trackback by browse around this site | 11.26.2013 | 12:48 am

    browse around this site…

    Fat Cyclist…

  37. Comment by Slo Joe | 11.27.2013 | 6:33 am

    Sir FC…

    Have you thought of doing a “shirt” as a fund raiser? Picture a nice black shirt with just Fat Cyclist and the horse and brat over the pocket. Simple and leisurely. You could make Tommy Bahama jealous.


Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.