Concession Speech

02.28.2014 | 12:38 pm

A Note from Fatty: Remember when I talked about the weight loss grace period? How I was giving us until the beginning of March to lose weight without having to divulge our starting weight? How I was giving us one last try at keeping our new year’s weight loss resolutions without subjecting ourselves to public humiliation and ridiculous gamification tactics?

Well, that grace period is about over. 

I won’t be posting Monday cuz that’s The Hammer’s and my anniversary (our fourth) and we’ll be out cycling and hiking in Southern Utah. But this Tuesday I’ll be revealing a new weight loss contest — one that focuses on accountability and long-term success. 

So. Find your scale. We’re about to lose some weight together.

Concession Speech

Good morning. Thank you for taking the time to be here today. I have a short statement to make, and then will answer questions.

I am a competitive person. I love a challenge, and have in fact based an inordinate amount of my adult life on my willingness to participate in contests, whether the contest is a weight-loss contest, or a race.

Because of this trait—call it a weakness if you will—I agreed to a weight loss contest with Adam Schwarz last year. We both succeeded in our goals (although he has since kept his weight off, while I have not). 

Following the conclusion of this contest and my subsequent participation in last year’s inaugural St. George Half Ironman, Adam challenged me to race him in the 2014 edition of this race.

Recklessly, I agreed.

Since that time I have watched, chagrined, as Adam related his podium positions in numerous triathalons, not to mention his relentless training in all three disciplines.

Meanwhile, I have enjoyed what I like to call my “off season.” Which is to say, I have ridden little, and eaten much. And have reaped what I have sown.

And in short, I am currently as pudgy as a pot-bellied pig.

Clearly, Adam would handily defeat me in St. George. I began  to mentally compose my mental blog post, wherein I would set forth my list of excuses, in a manner that somehow was simultaneously self-deprecating and convincing. It wouldn’t be an easy challenge, but I felt like I was up to the task: I would lose the race between Adam and me, then write a post that cheerfully acknowledged his win while making it seem trivial and ridiculous. 

And then, suddenly, I was confronted by a genuine, actual problem: Kenny — without consulting me, if you can believe it — had the temerity to have his fiftieth birthday on the same weekend as the St. George Half Ironman.

Further, Kenny elected to host his annual Ride Around White Rim in One Day (RAWROD, where I — almost nine years ago — got the idea for this blog) on that same weekend.

And then Bob said he’s coming. And so is Dug. And Ricky. And in short, the whole core team. And possibly a very recent winner of Survivor. And they’re riding the 7Up – Mag7 trail the day before RAWROD. And then having brats the night before.

And in short, Kenny is putting on what I would describe as the most perfect Moab weekend possible for his fiftieth birthday.

And I just don’t want to miss that. Which is to say, I won’t miss it. Which is to say, I’m going to Moab.

For this reason, I feel it is necessary for me to proclaim to the world that — had we raced the St. George Half Ironman — Adam would have absolutely, positively kicked my ass. 

He would have demolished me. Destroyed me. Left me sad, lonely, and questioning my life choices.

Let’s take a look at my splits from last year: 


My swim time was 41:32 (pathetic). My bike time was 2:29 (pretty fantastic). And my run time was 2:06 (astonishingly slow).

Now let’s assume that this year I would have been exactly the same as I was last year (in spite of the fact that my current fitness is nowhere like where I was this time last year).

I get the sense that had we raced, he would have been about eleven minutes faster out of the water than I was. That puts him at 30 minutes. 

On the bike, things would have gone (somewhat) better for me. Thanks to the fact that I live about 3,000 feet higher than St. George and he lives about 3,000 feet lower than it, combined with the fact that I own a high-zoot TT bike and he doesn’t, I would have reversed the time deficit, so I would be five minutes ahead of him. That gives him a cumulative time of 3:20.

And then he would have slaughtered me on the run. There’s no two ways around that fact. I am not running at all this year. Every time I’ve tried, I’ve been crippled for about a week after. Meanwhile, Adam has taken to running as if it were actually an enjoyable sport, rather than a hideous mockery of all that is good in the universe of exercise options.

Hence, let’s be generous (to me) and say that Adam would be about a minute per mile faster than I am. He’d do the run in 1:53, for a total time of 5:18. 

All up, this totals out to him beating me by approximately eight minutes. That’s close, yes. But still a clear and convincing win. 

My speculative numbers don’t lie, probably. Adam would have beat me. And thus I concede to him. 

Adam, you are the superior athlete. I bow down to you.

That said, I reserve the right to retract this concession if Adam has a slower race time than 5:26:07. And don’t think I won’t be checking.


  1. Comment by Jeff Bike | 02.28.2014 | 12:50 pm

    Why don’t you just invite Adam to Moab and postpone this “Concession Speech”.

    Before i wrote this post I actually did invite him to come down to Moab instead of doing the Half. But he wants to do the race. – FC

  2. Comment by BostonCarlos (formerly NYC) | 02.28.2014 | 12:58 pm

    what were the terms of the race? What does he win?

  3. Comment by iRide | 02.28.2014 | 1:51 pm

    which is worse pathetic or astonishingly slow?

  4. Comment by UpTheGrade, SR, CA | 02.28.2014 | 2:47 pm

    How much did you have to bribe Kenny’s Mum to arrange for this convenient excuse?

    Or is this really just part of the great “I’m really out of shape” cover story that hides your true Levi’s Leipheimers’s KOM gobbling form? Next time I see him I’m going to warn him. He’s very sensitive about his KOMs you know.

  5. Comment by wharton_crew | 02.28.2014 | 4:09 pm

    I couldn’t swim 1.2 miles if you held a donut in front of me and had hungry sharks behind me. Also, I must agree with you that the ’sport’ (hah!) of running was spawned in the deepest caverns of Hell, when Satan himself tried to one-up the horrors of bamboo-under-fingernails, live mummification, and the NPR quarterly fund-raising marathons that are currently going on.

  6. Comment by Al Pastor | 02.28.2014 | 7:35 pm

    You could have made a race of it if you let someone coach you on your swimming. It’s the area that technique matters the most.

    You could probably shave 5 minutes off your time with not that much effort.

    I can’t help you with the running. My only suggestion is to do what this guys does (cheat)-

  7. Comment by Clydesteve | 02.28.2014 | 11:28 pm

    at least pot-bellied pigs are cute…

  8. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 03.1.2014 | 12:50 am

    Fatty I’m sure you’re overreacting. You’re safe until you see Lisa sporting one of these:


    Lisa. Here’s the site to order:

  9. Comment by Bill Hart-Davidson | 03.1.2014 | 10:11 am

    Whatever it is, I’m in. I’ve never needed to follow along on one of your weight loss challenges so badly as this year. This winter in MI has been brutal. I’m not terribly over my typical weight (+4 lbs. this morning) but I’m outta shape and it’s March.

  10. Comment by leroy | 03.1.2014 | 10:23 am

    My dog assures me that if you calculate your age in dog years, you can have 7 birthday parties every calendar year.

    That explains why our Cheetos budget is through the roof.

    He also says 50 is the new 40, but so is 60 and 70.

    It’s hard to follow him when he starts explaining math. He can count on the nails his paws. I have to take off my shoes to keep up.

    Both of wish Kenny an early happy birthday!

    (And my dog adds that you don’t want to do an Ironman if you’re rusty. Unless, of course, you’re a tin man riding support for ToTo on some Roubaix style race along yellow brick roads.)

  11. Comment by PaulW | 03.3.2014 | 11:28 am

    My bike pace is very close to your run pace, and there are elements of similarity in our swimming abilities – i.e. I could swim 100m in 41.32, then sink.

    Currently recovering from bike-induced-surgery, so I’m a Fat Non-cylist; bring on the contest – I need something where you claim a loss, not concede it!

  12. Comment by Eric L | 03.4.2014 | 11:45 am


    Golly, four years already? Time sure flies when you’re having fun.

  13. Comment by UpTheGrade, SR, CA | 03.4.2014 | 1:00 pm

    Yeah, Happy Anniversary!
    I hope you both rode single-speed hardtails up some hard trails to celebrate and remember the happy occasion!

  14. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 03.4.2014 | 1:03 pm

    Happy Anniversary! Unlike @UpTheGrade…, I just hope you stayed in…..?

  15. Comment by Eldens daughter Carrie | 03.14.2014 | 8:09 pm

    I just want to say, that after all of these years, I, Carrie, have finally figured out how to post a comment on my fathers blog. Fear my superior intellect on how computers work.


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