Know Thine Enemy

Posted: April 23, 2011 in Bike, Nutrition, Training
Tags: ,
  • Long Ride (click to see stats)
  • 79.08k (2:53:29)
  • Avg. Heart Rate = 138 bpm
  • Max. Heart Rate = 169 bpm
  • Avg. Speed = 27.0 km/h
  • Max. Pace = 51.01 km/h
  • Calories = 3501
  • Temp = 21°

An absolutely stellar day of riding today; beautiful temperatures, warm sunshine, baby animals scurrying around everywhere…it’s heaven.  So, from now on, it’s ‘so long spin bike’ and ‘hello, base training’!  Although I have been out for short rides a few times already this year, today was the first opportunity for a long training ride with the Coach.  What’s her idea of gently introducing me into my base training you ask?  Why, ride 25k into the viscous wind and up the Niagara Escarpment to her house, just to do another “easy” hour of wind sprints along the River Rd. before turning around and cycling home again.  Gee…thanks, Coach.

Coach Saskia drives into the wind while I reap the rewards of easing back and enjoying being “in the draft”.

Anyhow, it was awesome to be out and bike training again.  Where running provides me opportunities to test my mental limits and chances to simply get away, cycling really gets my juices going; I just love the competitive feeling of cycling with others.  Sun Tzu laid it out pretty clearly:

“It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.” 

Truer words were never spoken and my list of enemy’s is growing by leaps and bounds.

Beaverdams Rd.

And while driving into the head winds along River Rd., I realized that there is a most frightening and dangerous enemy currently circulating amongst us.  This particular person regularly calls forth on the legions of fat and non-health conscious types and then whoops them up into a literal feeding frenzy with promises of calorie-rich, high-cholesterol fatty foods.  Just yesterday I fell asleep to a marathon on the Food Network catering to this peckish pariah (I think I gained 5 lbs in my sleep through osmosis).  He preaches the easy path of least resistance diet-wise and helps promote this deep-fried culture of ours that we have adopted in recent years.  Healthy eating is passé again, it seems, and the general public is once again more interested in mammoth-sized burgers, chicken-fried steaks and bowls of gravy that you could swim laps in.  I am speaking, specifically, about Guy Fieri, the undisputed king of high calorie cuisine and host of the popular Food Network show Diners, Drive-in’s and Dives– the very embodiment of culinary evil on earth.

A real fixer-upper along Effingham Rd.

I love my Food Network as much as the next ‘Foodie’, but this cooking show (and I use that term loosely) literally drives me up the wall.  I hate it.  It’s not that the food looks unappetizing or unappealing – far from it actually – it’s just that it represents EVERYTHING that I’m not supposed to be eating or indulging in.  Isn’t that always the way?  The food stuff that Fieri features on his show is typically either too fattening, too rich, too high in salt, cholesterol, carbs, or calories, or just too plain scary.  My heart begins to palpitate irregularly from the opening scene as he leans that one meaty tattooed arm outside the window of his sweet 1967 Chevy Camaro SS Convertible and offers us his promises of endless empty calories.  He’s killing what I’ve come to know and respect about healthy and ordinary home-cooked fare.

Riverside Dr. Still drafting…

So from this point on I’m hereby labeling Guy Fieri as the enemy and, therefore, someone to be avoided at all costs.  I am calling on all my tri brothers and sisters, as well as anyone else who believes in and supports a healthy and active lifestyle, to come together and hunt down this culinary demon seed and destroy him before it’s too late and we all end up as brainwashed zombies all shoveling drumsticks into our gaping maws until our stomachs explode.  However, believe it or not, there is the argument put forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that modestly overweight people were found to have a lower risk of death than those of normal weight.  Pardon? 

Getting ready for the season…

It’s true: the CDC reported that obesity accounts for 25,814 deaths a year in the United States. As recently as this past January, the CDC came up with an estimate 14 times higher: 365,000 deaths. Wait…how do you make an error in calculation that far out of whack, unless the low-carb, low-sodium, low-fat, bran muffins they’re feeding the lab statisticians in the morning aren’t supplying enough of the required vitamins and minerals to enable their brains capable of simple configurations?  But I digress…

Yep. Spring is finally here…

According to the new calculation, obesity ranks No. 7 instead of No. 2 among the leading preventable causes of death (behind other causes like alcohol, tobacco, guns, germs, car crashes, and risky sexual behavior) and Guy Fieri is reaping full benefit.  This new analysis found that obesity – being extremely overweight – is still indisputably lethal. But as several recent smaller studies have shown, people who are only modestly overweight have a lower risk of death than those of normal weight.  So these studies seem to indicate that what we deem as “normal” body size may, in fact, be set too low for today’s populations.  Great, NOW they tell me!  Still – it’s not helping me with this wind today.

Blind corner along Sulpher Spring Dr.

Now, for those REALLY fat people who are either suffering some medical condition, or, sadly, just truly don’t give a shit about their bodies or dignity anymore, this is like discovering the Fountain of Youth.  It’s like the sacred “Magna-Cupcake” for those of us pudgy people who are just a little below the normal accepted standards associated with being “fit”.

Yeah, you guessed it…drafting.

Also, the study found that people classified as overweight are eating better than they used to.  To me, that’s just a given and it should have been obvious to those in the medical science field automatically.  Just compare the available menu options at any regular restaurant to the ‘Healthy Lifestyles’ options provided.  You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that those diet products, or a good percentage of them anyway, are total shit both taste-wise as well as nutritionally; less is not always best.  The person working their way through a rack of BBQ ribs at Montana’s is probably eating better and exorcizing his bodily functions better than the person eating the all-organic tree bark platter on a bed of fresh-cut grass.  There is a reason why we humans outlive groundhogs and other natural herbivores – we eat better!  A giant sea turtle doesn’t manage to exist for a hundred plus years without developing a little tolerance for pollution and discarded plastic beverage rings, does it?

Eat your heart out Guy…

But be that all as it may, you also don’t have to go and 100% embrace the whole gluttonous lifestyle either as Guy seems to have no problem in doing with open arms as well as empty stomach.  How his heart hasn’t seized up with a massive coronary by now completely baffles my brain and for that reason he can get stuffed – literally.  I’d love to bludgeon him within an inch of his life with cured slabs of Montreal smoked meat for his sins.  However, considering I’ve also burned 3501 calories already today…I think I’ll keep the smoked meat to myself and just give Guy Fieri the universal one-finger salute instead.

  1. Jeff C says:

    Nice ride. I just clicked on the ‘click to see stats’ link for the 1st time and it showed me the trail you followed…. That is so cool! Gotta get me one of those babies. Should I dare ask how much they are?

    I used to love watching 2 Fat Ladies…awesome food but you sure didn’t want to dwell on the ingredients…I’m sure Guy stole a few tips from them!

  2. Thanks Jeff! I use a Garmin Forerunner 305 series. Very affordable and very convenient if you like gathering personal data on yourself (also very user friendly). I LOVE it for my outdoor training and the view in Google Earth is clear enough that you can see specific landmarks that I pass if you care to zoom in enough. I love that feature and have included links on all my outdoor workout posts in this blog for you. If you scroll down the page it will also show you either my 5k interval splits (for running) or my 10k splits (for cycling). It helps keep me honest.

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