140: Howard Stern’s Jenn Sherman Obsession Continues And Our Interview With John Prewitt

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


Tickets for Homecoming go on sale February 21 and Crystal has tips on how to get your tickets.

Peloton was all over the pop culture universe this week – Howard Stern, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Steve Harvey Show, and This Is Us.

The new Power Zone instructors are officially announced.

A rare tweet from John Foley as he takes pride in Peloton being named a LBGTQ inclusive workplace by Human Rights Campaign. has an article comparing Peloton with Wahoo. compares all sorts of connected fitness products.

Robin Arzon makes the Create Cultivate 100 list.

A new Artist Series is announced featuring Billie Eilish.

Jersey Shore’s Snookie talks about peeing on the bike.

More evening classes are on the way.

HMC was in London.

Kristin McGee launches a yoga series of prenatal classes.

All this plus our interview with John Prewitt!

Watch the episode here:

Listen to the podcast here:

Howard Stern’s Jenn Sherman Obsession Continues And Our Interview With John Prewitt

What do you have in store for people?

We’ve got a plethora of things, little bits and pieces of Pelotonia.

No sneak peek?

Yeah, I get tired of doing the sneak peeks. Basically. I repeat what we’re going to do.

TCO 140 | Peloton CommunityIt’s like a table of contents. Since you’re not going to do it, then I’ll do my shameless plugs. Don’t forget we’re available on Apple podcasts. You can go there and a rate and review and most importantly, subscribe. That is so you never miss an episode. You can do that wherever you choose to get your podcast. There should be some subscribe option and you should take advantage of it. You can also find us on Facebook at While you’re there, like the page, join the group. We have so many people joining.

I don’t know what you did. Somebody must have posted something about us somewhere.

It has been quite the influx. Hello and welcome. Also you can leave a review there and eventually, I’ll get around reading them. Here’s one from the good old iTunes. This is from ArnoldFamily1. They said, “I love all things Peloton but hadn’t leaned into The Clip Out podcast even though Britt Drake, #SweatingGlitter, told me it was fantastic, informative, fun and worth a listen. Thanks for all of your work and keep it up.” #AssLikeA10YOBoy is the leaderboard name. There you go.

Thank you for that very nice review. Thank you, Britt, for telling them we’re fantastic.

You’re not going to say thank you by name to the person that left the review?


Not even just once?

No. I don’t know their actual name.

You could use the leaderboard name. Also. don’t forget if you want to say up to date with everything that goes on with the show, you can sign up for our newsletter It will come to you weekly-ish.

Homecoming will be here before you know it.

It is a few months away.

Tickets will be going on sale very soon.

February 12th at noon, Eastern. For those of you who are new to this, I am going to tell you to expect everything bad to happen. Expect that the internet won’t work. Expect that your computer will freeze up inexplicably at 11:59. Expect that Peloton will start ten minutes early. Expect that they will start ten minutes late. I don’t know which of those things will occur, but all of them happened.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


Last year while trying to buy tickets, your computer got feline AIDS. You’ll never know what’s going to happen.

I had to take it to the vet. It was crazy. Here’s my suggestion for you. Have your phone browser ready. Have your computer from work, if you work, ready. Have your personal computer ready and have your spouse do the same because you can only buy one ticket at a time.

Do you want to give away all your tips like this?

I love our Clip Out audience because they’re going to ask me anyway. I’m going to get a thousand inbox messages. Keep it on the DL, keep it amongst all several thousands of you. If they’re planning on going, I want them to have the best shot possible. It’s my gift to you. Consider it a late holiday gift.

That’s very gracious of you.

Thank you.

That’s all we know at the moment?

It is. The tickets are $95. There is another thing that we do know actually. It appears that this year, you tell them which classes you would like to take. You’d say, “I like this instructor, I like that instructor, I like this type of workout.” Then they’re going to assign you where they want to assign you. There will be no signing up. They’re going to put you where they want to put you. I think that’s going to be horrible. There are going to be so many complaints. It’s going to be insane and everyone gets to attend the community run. Everybody’s in on that.

That’s probably an easier thing to accommodate tons of people for.

It sold out so fast last year.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


The slogan this year is, “You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit.”

It should be that slogan every year. They will still throw a fit.

A little window into the mind of Crystal O’Keefe. If you’re wondering, sometimes I tease her about being stubborn and you see the bright, shiny side of her, not the stubbornness or things like the faces she’s making it me, but to show you how stubborn she is. I wish you guys could see her face. She’s giggling with her mouth closed. She’s laughing, but also has a sour face going. You only get that one about 2% of the time, so you’re very fortunate. Anyway, in the notes that I have here, it doesn’t say homecoming, it says HRI. For the newer listeners, we’re not going to explain it. You can ask a Peloton friend homecoming versus HRI.

I want to mention one other thing that was not on the list. I saw posted in The Clip Out group that Kristina Blair Howard mentioned that Peloton’s Q2 earnings are coming up on February 5th at 5:00 PM Eastern. That’s the Q2 earnings call for Peloton. I will be on that. If anybody would like to join and you have shares, you should listen along. The link is out there at

Back to our regularly scheduled program. Howard Stern continued his obsession with Jenn Sherman.

Working from home, it's nice to have the option of getting a workout without having to go to the gym. Click To Tweet

I had a rough day when we were putting the news together, so I did not include it. He actually had a visit from Jenn via the call-in feature.

She had to be beside herself.

She got through.

Do you think she actually gave another number? When we were in the radio, we had the request line, but then you had what we called the hotline, which is if something had really gone bad. Then you had what we called the warm line. That was what you’d give to guests to call.

TCO 140 | Peloton CommunityI don’t think so because this sounded like an unscheduled call. He was talking about how she sings on the bike all the time and that she had done a new track ride that week and that she didn’t sing as much. She was calling in to tell him, “That was me covering that ride. I didn’t know all those songs because I’m not the one that put it together.” You could tell how nervous she was. Her voice sounded so nervous. She kept it together. He would have never known how nervous she was but I know because I listen to her voice all the time.

He knew. He’s a very astute interviewer.

He was very gentle with her.

There’s a lot of bluster there but he’s good at picking up on cues and knowing what people’s buttons are. My guess is he knew it.

I have to mention that our interviewee, John Prewitt, also known as Kenny_Bania. He is the one who founded that clip for me and allowed me to post it on his behalf in The Clip Out. He said there’s another one because Howard Stern’s not done talking about her. I didn’t understand.

It sounds like he was talking about doing some hypothetical live event. He was trying to get people there for free and they were riffing. They started talking about having Jenn Sherman on a bike and having the entire audience on Peloton. They were being goofy.

Going back to the previous clip, after he hung up with Jenn, he started telling Robin, his cohost, about how Jenn Sherman is to him.

He should have told Jenn Sherman. It’s not like she’s not listening. She’s still hearing it. Does he know how radio works? I would think he does by now.

Maybe he was a little nervous too. When you’re starstruck, you’re starstruck.

Even people that meet famous people all the time, they still have those certain people that can rattle them. It happens.

I’ve seen it happen to you very rarely.

I don’t know what you’re talking about. It was all monkeys-related. Other than that, I’m just like, “What’s up, Bruce Willis?” He was like, “You produced Headquarters?” Then I get all nervous. While we’re talking about Peloton in the pop culture, it had quite a week with Stern and then there was an out-joke on Curb Your Enthusiasm.

I thought it was in the middle of the episode?

No, that was the final shot of him on the Peloton.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


Maybe it was toward the end. He was riding a Peloton because he had been working out at the gym. Then at the end, he was riding a Peloton in tennis shoes because it’s Larry David.

It was weird though. You pointed it out, but I thought it was worth mentioning. It opens with him on a treadmill in a gym and then obviously there’s a kerfuffle and then later, he doesn’t want to go to the gym. He’s going to work-out at home and then you see his work-out room with a Peloton and a weight machine and a treadmill? I was like, “Why would you ever go to the gym?”

I don’t think they thought that through. Clearly, they’re not as obsessed with workout rooms as we are, because I am.

Also, Peloton got mention on This Is Us.

I don’t want to know any spoilers, but it’s something about Randall mentioned.

That’s St. Louis’ Sterling K. Brown.

For some reason, I wanted to call him RK Sterling and I was like, “No, that’s like JK Rowling.” I don’t know what happened. There were too many Ks in my head. The joys of getting old. I love him. He’s such a great actor. I like that show.

I think there’s only so long you can keep that storytelling. I said it when that show started, “This is going to be Lost for soccer moms.” It starts off great, but how do you keep telling a story like this when you want to tell it indefinitely? It’s still enjoyable.

That first season was magnetic.

That was like first season of Desperate Housewives. There are some shows when that first season is perfect. This Is Us, Desperate Housewives, Friday Night Lights, those are prime examples. Anyway, off of TV talk.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


We’re not done with pop culture.

We’re not because Robin Arzon was on the Steve Harvey show.

She even got Steve Harvey to ride on a Peloton on his show. It didn’t look like it was for very long and he was still wearing his suit. They had a great talk and it’s been posted all over the place, so you can check that out. It was great to see Robin on Steve Harvey show. That’s awesome.

Christine and Olivia officially added to the Powerzone line.

The mystery is done. Out of the huge debates, the counting of the ballots, Christine was at the top every time. Olivia was all over the place, sometimes up, sometimes not. They’re both there. The Peloton Prophet was correct and it was announced during the joint Peloton Powerzone ride.

When you're new to riding, it can be very intimidating to ride live. Click To Tweet

Another one. John Foley had an interesting tweet. He doesn’t tweet a whole lot.

I hope he doesn’t think I stalk him because I watch him on all social media channels.

There are lots of people who watch him on all social media channels.

He tweeted that Peloton have earned 100% on human rights campaigns, Corporate Equality Index for LGBTQ inclusive workplace policies and practice. He was very proud of that and that’s awesome. He should be proud of that. Everybody at Peloton should be proud of that.

I wonder what they score that on. I’ll have to go read that.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


You can go read it. If anybody else is interested as well, you can find it at CEI 2020. If you google that, you’ll find it.

They can use that hashtag, #CEI2020, on Twitter and it will pop right up. There was an interesting article in

They compared a Wahoo bike and a Peloton bike.

What is a Wahoo?

It’s a training bike. The Wahoo bike is an indoor training bike. They have trainers that you can put underneath your bike, like we saw at the bike shop where you use your outdoor bike, you stick it on there. These weren’t rollers, but they have those too. They have different kinds of trainers.

You use your road bike as an indoor training bike?

This is their answer to Peloton Stationary Bike. They came out with a bike that is like ‘s bike, in that it’s an indoor bike. That’s the only thing they have in common, nothing else about it.

I wonder what all those road bike people who’ve been shitting on indoor stationary bikes because of Peloton.

They’re still shitting on it because I’m not done.

TCO 140 | Peloton CommunityThey were so above it.

They still are because here’s the thing, the Wahoo is specific to trainers or it’s to people who train outside. The reason that’s important is because if you’re training on it, you can move the handlebars back and forth. It gets you a more aerodynamic fit, just like your actual road bike, which the Peloton can’t do. It’s not meant to do that. There are a lot of differences. The Wahoo is more specific for people who are training for things like triathlons or riding outside in general. Whereas the Peloton is meant to be a stationary spin bike. You can also use it to train for outdoor rides. They’re two totally different tools.

I’m sure the Wahoo thing comes in handy, especially if you’re an outdoor rider that lives in a place where you get snow a lot.

You can use it with different apps. You can use it with Swift, you can use it with all these other different apps to do races or connect with other people online. When you do that, somehow it’s able to increase your incline or decrease your incline on the bike automatically.

It does it for you.

You also have gears that you can shift just like your outdoor bike. Those are all things that are very specific to training. This article was attempting to say, “Which should you do?” A lot of people had issues with this article. I posted it. I thought they did a good job of saying, “Peloton is for one thing and this is for another.” It was to compare them point by point.

I don’t even know how you compare it because it sounds like it’s pretty spiffy.

That’s why people had a problem with the article because they’re not equal tools. They’re not meant for the same purpose. There’s some crossover. If you had a Venn diagram, they could both be in the middle but one’s for training and one’s for spin class. I thought the article did a pretty good job of explaining that. They were very positive to Peloton and to Wahoo, which I was appreciative of because sometimes people are in one camp or the other. That’s why the article is valuable to me. It’s a great breakdown point by point of each bike for both of those different things. For somebody who is in the market for both, you’re in that Venn diagram center piece, this is a great article.

I’m sure if you ride outside and you enjoy that, but then you also see the benefits of Peloton. I’m sure you probably are torn, but there are probably tons and tons. I’m sure they’re out there. had an article and they’re talking about how the home gym has returned with a vengeance, which we’ve talked about many times. They break down all of the different connected fitness stuff that matters. I say, “That matters,” because not everyone made it. They talked about the Peloton Bike, the Peloton Tread, they talked about the Hydrow, they talked about Mirror, they talked about tonal. That’s a lot. Another thing I found interesting that somebody called out the second I posted it was they had the prices wrong for the Peloton stuff. What they did is they included the monthly fee as the monthly fee of the subscription and if you were buying it with financing it. They bundled it together. It looked like they would show, “Here’s your price per month and here’s your price for the bike.” It looked like it was a $2,000 bike, plus you’ve got to pay $80 a month. I was like, “That’s not right at all.” They did that on the Tread and the Bike, but they did not do it on any other piece of equipment. That was kind interesting. I think it might’ve been the person taking the information from Peloton didn’t get it right.

They didn’t process it properly.

It was a good article for what it was worth. It was a good break down of everything. They want to get clicks. It wasn’t anything too exciting.

Also, .za is South Africa, which then also makes you wonder who they’re writing this for because you can’t get a Peloton in South Africa. It was a British colony as we know, but I’m curious as to who’s the intended reader if you’re writing about it in a country where you can’t get it? Maybe it’s coming to they know something and we don’t. If they knew that much more, they will get the price right.

Tonal is not available in any country other than America. I don’t think that’s about what country of origin. For some reasons, this was about clicks.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


There was the Create & Cultivate 100 list.

Robin Arzon posted about this. They went through influencers by section. Under Health and Wellness, she was listed as one of the top contenders of the Create & Cultivate list. It’s pretty cool. Congrats, Robin.

We should’ve talked about this in the pop culture stuff, but Snooki peed on her bike.

Maybe more than once, it’s hard to say. Apparently, you pop out a couple of kids and there can be accidents. Sometimes there’s a little stress incontinence and that happens for her on the Peloton. That has never happened to me on the Peloton. It has happened at other times though. Maybe you sneeze just wrong. Getting old sucks. She’s not that old.

She’s probably 35 or something. A lot of people chimed in. Half of the people were like, “You’re awful. I hate you.” There are a lot of people who chimed in, “That’s a thing.” I know that you refuse to watch Jersey Shore. I get sucked into it. I don’t watch the back to the shore thing they’re doing, but I like it. It’s easy to make fun of the cast of Jersey Shore. They’re very much cartoon characters. I will say, the longer I watch it, the more I was like, “These are pretty nice people. They seem genuinely nice.”

Embrace the community you find from doing Peloton. Click To Tweet

We watched that Marriage Boot Camp. You might remember that some of the characters. It grew on me. I was like, “This guy.” Then he grew on me. He’s adorable.

What I like about most of the casts of Jersey Shore is that they were exactly what they told you they were going to be.

I have respect for that.

They didn’t have any shame in it. They didn’t lie. Even when they were out like carousing and tearing through ladies, they were like, “This is what we do.” They were very upfront about it. It was like, “This shouldn’t shock you.” I grew to have a certain amount of affection for them, much to my surprise.

I shouldn’t judge.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


It looks like there’s a new artist series being launched. It will be the first one that the volume level won’t go past six.

That’s not true. It’s going to be Billie Eilish for those of you wondering what that even means. There are a lot of you who don’t know who Billie Eilish is. I didn’t know until about a year ago and I dig it. It’s not something that I would go to all the time, but Jenn Sherman has included her in some of her playlists, and it works. I think that this will be good. I don’t know if I’ll enjoy it as some of the other ones because I don’t know as many of her songs. Some of her songs I enjoy. I have to respect the fact that she’s been writing songs for so long and she’s sixteen.

She’s selling out arenas in a heartbeat. She does have songs that I like, but I just don’t think of her music as hard driving exercise. It falls into that whisper rock camp to me.

There are places of it. It’s very incumbent upon the teacher to do their magic with making it work. I think that these two that they chose, so it’s going to be Kendall on the Bike and then it’s going to be Becs Gentry for the run and Anna Greenberg is going to do the flow. I think that they’re all well-suited to do that. I like what these artists collaborations that they’ve been picking instructors, they’ve been matching them with musicians that they mesh with and they use in their classes. I think that’s great.

This is the first artist series that’s all cooled down.

It’s going to be good.

More evening classes are on the way.

I don’t know how much that’s going to affect a good portion of our audience. I found this on the UK page. There are more evening classes are coming in the UK. That’s six hours later than it is here. I think that will mean more afternoon classes for the US. We’ll see how that goes. They’re going to be coming in from the London studio. Of course, there are going to be more opportunities to ride live. That is very exciting for the London studio. They’ve been wanting to grow. Now, they have four instructors. This is great news for them. This is awesome.

I wonder how long it will be as they add more countries before there’s pretty much live classes almost 24 hours a day.

That will depend on where they’re at because they added London and then Germany and it’s probably going to depend on where they go because if they’re not constantly going one direction, if they’re not going East or West, it’s not going to matter.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


I bet you, it happens eventually.

Hannah Marie Corbin was also in London this. That’s another reason that we wanted to mention London. She was there and she got to ride live with Sam Yo. Then afterwards, they had a little meet and greet out in the main area, the main lobby, and then she did some stretches with some of the people that came in. It was a great time from what it looked like.

There’s a new yoga class?

Yes. I should have included that. The last Wednesday of every month at 8:00 AM Eastern, there’s going to be a whole new series, 60 minutes live Prenatal Class with Kristin McGee. That is very exciting. People have been asking for these. This is so exciting. Eventually, all the instructors are going to have their own curated thing like this.

Now they have a Postnatal class, so you will stop peeing on the bike.

Joining us is John Prewitt. John, how’s it going?

How are you doing?

I always like to find out how people found Peloton originally.

We got our bike in July of 2017. My wife had a couple of friends who had the bike that she knew of and they were your casual riders. They weren’t drinking the Peloton Kool-Aid in all over social media about it and in the community. She was aware of a couple of friends who did it and liked it and had it. Right after that, all the targeted ads start showing up on Facebook. We had taken an interest, but we were both haters on the whole subscription model. We were thinking, “You buy a bike and then you have to pay a gym membership on top of that?” We had no idea of what came with that of all the other content than the extras. We lived in Austin, Texas at the time. What sold it for us as we went to the Austin showroom, which was fairly new and we both did a ride side-by-side in the showroom. We did a 30-minute Cody ride. Right after that, that sold us. We’re all in. We bought the bike and got it a week or so later. My first ride was a Cody 30-minute Guilty Pleasures ride. From there, it took off with our level of engagement.

Before this, were you guys both into fitness, going to the gym or didn’t go at all? How was that working?

We were not gym-goers. We never had a gym membership. My wife was always into barre-based workouts. When we lived in Chicago before we lived in Austin, she started going to The Bar Method, which is a ballet-based studio exercise class. This Bar Method blew up and this was back in 2006 or 2007. She started going there, taking regular classes and then we moved to Austin shortly after that and she got into a similar studio exercise experience called Pure Barre methods competition in the same exercise space realm. She became a teacher there. She was teaching Pure Barre and taking classes there in Austin for the entire time. We lived there for a few years. She always did Pure Barre. I always played sports. Growing up, I always played ice hockey. I played goalie since I was little and traveled in high school and college. After our son was born, I stopped playing in men’s ice hockey leagues in Austin. We had a crappy elliptical in our house, which I would like to plop my iPad on and binge watch Netflix and would casually go back and forth on the elliptical. That was the extent of the exercise. I’m not walking the dog every day. We both worked from home, so it’s nice having that option, not having to go to the gym but not gym-goers at all.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


What is the difference between Barre and Pure Barre?

They’re similar like small movements with weights.

There’s no real difference between the two things? It’s just a different brand name. It’s Coke and Pepsi.

They are two different companies. My wife is more partial to Pure Barre. She thinks it’s a harder workout. She’s taught it and she’s more biased towards that, but similar workouts.

I should be careful because this is probably how some people feel when I’m like, “NordicTrack and Peloton.”

I fear for your safety, John, because she keeps it and you’re like, “They’re the same thing.”

I’m sure you have others that are crazy about the barre method. There’s something called Daily Barre. There are many variations with the word barre in it that are barre-based. It’s a little watered down.

You were sports-minded and fit, but Peloton, I would assume, was a game-changer for you, guys?

Definitely, because you didn’t have to spend all that time going somewhere. It was something to look forward to during the day. We both work from home, so it’s like we hop on there, jump right off and go right back into our work routine for the rest of the day.

How many days on end do you spend at your house without leaving?

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


It’s many. She still goes to Pure Barre. She supplements with Peloton. I’m working out maybe 4 or 5 days a week, but some days I’ll be home all day long and I go out and walk the dog at some point in the afternoon, besides getting the rides in. Before we moved into this house, we were in an apartment for four months while we were waiting for this one to be built. We were right on top of each other, working maybe 5 feet away. That was challenging and stressful. That tested the relationship, but we made it out on top.

Unlike the people that your wife knew that had Peloton, you guys are not casual users. You like social media and Peloton.

When I first started, I wasn’t crazy. I’m insane with it now with how much I ride throughout the day. My wife, she does it almost every day, but I do multiple rides in the morning and the afternoon. When we first got it, I was on the OPP, the Official Peloton Page, here and there like I was a newbie. I’m a lurker posting here and there. It was after I found a few tribes, I joined Denis’s Menaces first and then I found the JSS Tribe and then the #BooCrew. I started posting little snippets of pre-shows and then compilations. I took it to a whole new level.

What inspired you to start posting your videos?

Back when I first started riding and Denis was the one that got me hooked on the bike. Because he was hired basically right before we got the Peloton. I discovered him immediately. I loved his personality. I loved how he told stories through the ride and his corny jokes. I felt like he was always kicking your ass but you didn’t realize it because you were having such a good time. I noticed whenever I would ride live, I’d always join the ride early for the pre-show before they started taping for on-demand. Every now and then, he’d give a shout out and I would start recording with my iPhone. I would set up a little tripod. It was this janky recording or you hear me coughing in the background or blowing my nose from time to time. If you would tell a funny story or something or a shout out, I’d post that on the Menaces page or the OPP.

It evolved from thereafter iPhone had screen recording after they added that feature where you could record directly off the screen a nice clean recording. I started recording the pre-shows and then recording funny moments and randomly posting them here and there. It took off from there. When I started riding with Cody more and his pre-shows were hilarious, the things he would say before the ride would start. I would randomly start posting pre-show moments and then people would say like, “Do you have my shout-out from this pre-show?” I became the unofficial bootlegger of the pre-show, which I love to do because I feel like if you join the ride right when it starts or right before, I almost feel like you’re missing out on a little party because you never see that again. It’s gone forever.

I thought that you have stumbled into a little cottage industry.

Especially with all the rides that got deleted.

You can make a bank if you’ve got that Jenn’s Men Tribe.

I only got the pre-show and a little quip here and there from the actual ride.

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As Peloton gets larger and more important, this is probably a portion of their programming that they might not even be keeping themselves.

I don’t know if it’s deleted forever. There was an awesome moment in a Jenn Sherman ride where her daughter showed up to ride with her in the studio for the first time and surprised her. I got most of that moment of the pre-show where she freaked out and realized it was her. Security came like somebody’s going to rush the stage. I sent her that clip, but I don’t know if they ever keep stuff like that because I’ve never seen it posted by them or anywhere else.

It’s a good question. From a data management standpoint, I’m guessing they delete it but from a, “We need to keep a record of all of the awesome things that we do,” who knows what they do?

All I know is my memory on my iPhone is rapidly dwindling. The amount of Cody albums that I have of clips and compilations, I got to start cleaning the house a little bit.

Do you have a place where you’re going to back all that up or are you going to delete?

I haven’t even thought that far ahead, Tom. Maybe the newest iPhone gives you more memory and go from there.

When TV first started, nobody kept all that stuff. It’s like, “Who cares? We’re going to do another one next week. It doesn’t matter.” Now when they do find stuff like that, people are always happy.

I did ask Peloton a couple of years ago if they had an archive and if they were keeping all this stuff. I never got a reply. I figure that’s probably some secret that they don’t want to divulge. Maybe they didn’t want to go find out.

They don’t want to deal with a million questions of like, “Did you get my shout out from the pre-roll a few weeks ago?”

I would think it’s lost. It’s too much storage to deal with.

TCO 140 | Peloton Community


The other thing that I find about you is that you give a lot of high fives.

No one gives more, literally. That’s been quantified.

What can I say? I give good high fives. That was a feature that suited me apparently when they added that, whenever that enhancement was added in the app. That’s the one thing about my level of engagement in the community and the tribe. I love to encourage, to support people to build them up. I like that high five. I love to cheer people on when we’re riding. It’s easy to do and it’s such a simple gesture that sometimes people seem to appreciate.

I love it when I hop on a ride and it always happens the most on a Jenn Sherman ride. Sundays are my day. Whenever I hop on a bike on the ride on a Sunday morning and tons of high fives are being exchanged. It is fun. In my head it’s like “cheers.” You walked into cheers.

I joined the ride in the pre-show, I do a quick round for as many people as I can I get to depending on how many are there and then start getting ready. My system is like when the ride starts, I have my whole following, the people that I follow. I try to high five at least once a song or after a big push and then I go back and expand the whole leaderboard and try to go up and down as much as I can. There could be 80 people that I’m following. It takes a while to get through all those.

It’s hard because especially if there’s a bunch of milestones, which there always are on the Sunday morning ride. You’ve got to go through like, “I’m scrolling. I know. I saw them. Where did they go?”

Jenn has a workout with the milestone shout-outs and birthdays on Sunday mornings.

How many high-fives on average do you give during a 45-minute ride?

I’d say at least 90. I don’t know.

Are you getting extra arm workout from doing it?

That right-hand gets tired out, yes, the high-five hand.

Have you ever accidentally tried to high five somebody while you’re holding a dumbbell for your workouts?

That’s where people get you too. They try to high five you during the upper body. It’s like, “Really?”

I’m like, “I have the dumbbells. What do you want me to do?” I’m trying to high-five with my pinky.

I’m super OCD so it’s like, “Do I try to return it or do I wait?”

It’s hard because it’s mocking you. It’s there and you have to clear it.

It’s lingering and then more notifications pop-ups and then it gets buried further down. It’s your first world problems.

They should disable the high-five during arm work.

Some people try not to overdo with high five, like how we got Nick and Lisa Getty. They’re the OGs that aren’t super into high fives. I try to be respectful of them.

You’ve got to respect the high-five boundary.

Everybody else I bombard. It’s all right. They can deal with it. To circle back when Tom said you could quantify the number of high fives I’ve given. That was a total shock when Alex and Robin shouted me out at the Homecoming celebration.

You had no idea that you were that high up on the list?

No. Earlier that day before the party at the Hammerstein Ballroom for Homecoming, I had gotten this random email from Jayvee Nava with Peloton and she said, “Please come to this entrance of the Hammerstein at so-and-so time.” I showed up there and walked in and they said, “You’re Kenny_Bania. This is so and so Chris with Peloton. He’s going to show you what’s going on. We have something special planned. I can’t tell you what it is.” I said, “How did I get on your radar?” He said, “I can’t give anything away.” He kept it all secret. He walked me over to the stage where they were doing a soundcheck before they started letting everybody into the venue. He said, “You need to stand at this X on the floor at the center of this in front of the stage and be here standing here at 7:45 and I’ll meet you here.” Basically, the party starts when Alex and Robin come out and do their thing. We’re standing there and then I see Alex. He calls somebody out stage right for however many, like 5,000 rides, some crazy number of rides. I realized he’s going to shout me out and I had no idea what he was going to shout me out for. The spotlight comes on me and I hear him go, “Where’s John also known as Kenny_Bania?” I hear him and I’m like, “He got the leaderboard name wrong.” You put the high five hand up and he goes, “He’s given out over 61,000 high fives,” and everyone starts cheering and high fiving me. That was cool.

I think that means that you got closer to any of the instructors that night than anybody else.

You guys were in there, weren’t you?

Yes. I remember you walked up to us and took a selfie with us randomly. You didn’t say anything else. You were like, “Quick selfie,” took it and you were gone.

I don’t even remember that. I remember meeting you guys when I was riding the lounge bike at the studio and you were standing nearby and I shouted, “Clip Out.”

I don’t remember that.

I’m like, “I’m Kenny_Bania.” Crystal is probably all like, “Backup slowly, Tom.” I waved to you guys randomly when I was probably trying to get another ride in to make sure I reached a milestone while I was in town.

Do you think you’re going to be able to repeat it?

I don’t know. It’ll be interesting to see if they’re still keeping count.

Maybe you’ve inspired a competitor.

There are a lot of other big high fivers out there. The competition is stiff. It was fun. The following day when I rode with Jenn Sherman for the Homecoming ride, I was talking to her about that moment and she goes, “We were doing a rehearsal for that. When they said your name wrong, I walked up to him. I was like, it’s Kenny_Bania,” and they still got it wrong. It would have been cool if it had been her shouting out. Alex and Robin are pretty awesome too.

Is that a sports thing? What is Kenny_Bania?

Kenny_Bania is a character on Seinfeld.

I was thinking is that a Seinfeld thing? I remembered a Bania character but I’ve never seen it spelled, so I didn’t know it was spelled weird.

He’s one of the supporting characters on Seinfeld who’s this bad comedian.

He’s the guy that that converted to Judaism so he could make jokes about being Jewish.

That was Tim Whatley, Tom.

I haven’t watched Seinfeld since it was on for the first time.

That was Tim Whatley played by Bryan Cranston, the dentist who converted to Judaism for the jokes. Kenny Bania was this bad comedian that Jerry despised. He was oblivious to it. I always thought he was funny and he always had these awful jokes. Jerry in one episode, helps him with his material and he’s going, “That’s gold, Jerry.” There’s an episode, which is my favorite Seinfeld episode, where Kenny bumps into Jerry and he tells him he’s got a brand-new Armani suit that he outgrew that he can’t wear and he offers it to Jerry. Jerry was like, “Okay, whatever. I’ll take the suit.” In the end, Kenny’s like, “You can take me out for dinner some time.” Jerry’s like, “Okay, I’ll take you out for dinner.” They go out to dinner at this restaurant called Mendy’s, but then Kenny says he’s not hungry, he’s going to order soup. He’s going to save the meal for another time. They go into this big argument. Jerry goes, “No, Bania. The soup counts. Soup as a meal,” and Kenny’s all, “The soup is not a meal.” A lot of times that’s what my location field, my leaderboard name reads, “Soup is not a meal.”

We have a big Seinfeld fan here.

That had to be a Larry David story idea. It’s got Curb Your Enthusiasm written all over it.

It’s some personal story to them, I’m sure.

Do you watch Curb?

I do. I watched a random episode from the season with Lin-Manuel Miranda from Hamilton because the next season’s coming back.

I like Curb better than Seinfeld.

My Curb knowledge, I don’t have the deep Curb pull out of your ass references as I do with Seinfeld.

I like Seinfeld, but I didn’t like the Kramer stuff. The Kramer stuff in Seinfeld was too broad for me. I like Curb because it’s much like Seinfeld but without Kramer. It’s more of the cynical aspect of Seinfeld, which is fine for me.

My eyes glazed over a little. I love Larry David. He’s great. I love Seinfeld, but you guys love it more than I do. Tell us about the shirts that you made. You have to describe it first because Tom probably hasn’t seen it or he doesn’t know if he’s seen it unless it’s been pointed out specifically to him. He wouldn’t have known. There are probably readers who have no idea what I’m talking about. You have to describe it first.

You need the visual and I know I’ve sent you some pictures, Crystal. You can get a better sense. Everything that we buy now, there are some random targeted ads that pop up in your feed randomly. I don’t know if it was Facebook or Instagram, but it was this custom shirt company, custom clothing apparel company where you could put a face shot of somebody plastered all over the shirt. It’s like one face 100 times over every inch of the fabric. I see this ad pop up and this is when I’m deep in Cody World and the #BooCrew Tribe posting compilations and funny Cody videos all the time. I randomly post a screenshot of the ad to the #BooCrew page and I said, “Please tell me why I shouldn’t get a shirt of this with Cody’s face all over it made.” Pretty much everyone’s like, “You’ve got to do it.” They dared me and I ordered it. I got it. My wife took a picture of me on the Bike after I received it. They got a big kick out of it. My wife and I and son and in-laws, we went to Disney World and I worked around Disney World. I posted a picture of us in front of the castle, that traditional picture you always take in Disney World in front of the big castle. I was like, “That’s right. I wore my Cody tank here. I am 100% that Disney bitch.” People got a kick out of that.

There are other instructors that you’ve done this for.

Cody was the first and then Jenn Sherman is my absolute favorite instructor and Cody and Denis. I got a bike shortly after that. I ordered one of Denis and one of Jenn’s shirts and posted those. I was back in New Jersey visiting my mom and sister and brother-in-law. My wife and I rode in the studio with Jenn on Sunday morning and the first ride that we did with her, the Best of the Decade ride, I walked in wearing the Jenn shirt and my wife and I was on bike 5 and 6. We were dead center.

We couldn’t miss you because I was where I was riding and I was like, “That’s a lot of Jenn.”

I posted the pre-show clip after the ride. Jenn was like, “Look at this guy just slipping into town.” She was like, “Is that me all over that?” She’s like, “How are you doing Jenn Sherman, all 30 of you there?” She thought it was funny and she looked a little frightened.

I was like, “Does this end with a restraining order?”

I haven’t been served yet, so I think we’re good. I’d probably get one for Cody soon.

I think they’re okay as long as you don’t try and resell them.

That’s it for the shirts though. It was fun. I haven’t had a chance to ride since I got them to ride in the studio with Cody or Denis, but I’m going back for Jenn’s Men ride and hopefully, I’ll be able to do a Denis ride and a Cody one and rock the shirts.

I’m telling you, capture that ride. If it gets deleted, that’s a 401(k) in your pocket. I understand you have to pretend like it’s a dumb idea because of Peloton, but you and I, we know.

Do you do any of the other Peloton workouts or do you stick to the bike?

I’m mainly just the bike. I don’t have any excuse not to take it. I need to take advantage of the other content. I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never done a yoga class with Denis, which is ridiculous because he’s awesome. I’ve maybe done one sleep meditation, but I’m not a runner, so I’ve never done any of the running classes. We’ve traveled and I’ve used the app when I had to use a shitty hotel fitness room spin bike. It’s nice having that option.

Crystal, you’ve done the sleep meditation at a time or two. It was upsetting. The one time she said she was doing a sleep meditation and did you know how the room gets quiet and you can hear it bleeding through the headphones? It was my other podcast. She’s pitiful.

It’s the perfect cure for insomnia.

I was trying to drown out your snoring.

Sometimes I nod off during my other show. The joke’s on you.

You’ve said who your favorite instructor is, but it sounds like you have a few favorites.

Cody was my first ride even before we got the bike. Basically, Denis had started with Peloton after we got the bike right before and he got me hooked on it. I joined his tribe, Denis’s Menaces quickly thereafter. I had a total man-crush on him. When he came, we lived in Austin. He came to the Austin showroom maybe a couple of months after we had gotten the bike to do the little meet and greet. I dragged my wife there. She didn’t want to go, she doesn’t ride with Denis. I dragged my wife and son there. I was totally fanboying. This was when his hair was probably four feet shorter than it is now. It was super short. He’s full Fabio now with the hair at its length and its current way. Soon after that, I discovered Jenn Sherman. I remember taking a Green Day ride. Back then, I didn’t ride live. I was a totally new, super-intimidated to ride live, to open up the leaderboard. I’ve come a long way. From there, I did this on-demand Jenn ride. It was a Green Day ride. I remember posting in the OPP about it, taking a Jenn ride for the first time. She connected well with the people in the studio and with the people ratting at home.

I was impressed with the way she commanded the leaderboard and went through the whole ride. From there, I love riding with her. In January of 2018, I finally got to ride in the studio and my first ride was with Denis. A couple of days later, it was with Jenn and it was an ‘80s ride, which is amazingly still on-demand and available. I rode with her on bike 6. I wore my Kool-Aid shirt and I had University of Michigan headbands and wristbands on. I was smiling ear-to-ear. It was an amazing experience. We talked afterwards and we’re both huge Howard Stern fans. We both grew up in New Jersey. We love the Grateful Dead. She has similar interests that we vibed well.

Do you feel like your favorite tribes match up with your favorite instructors or do you have other tribes that rise to the top?

The main tribe I would say is the JSS Tribe. I have some of my closest Pelo friends who are also in the Menaces and the #BooCrew. That’s where I’d say I have many great friendships that have formed since I joined the community in the JSS Tribe. I’ve gone Homecoming. I went to the JSS Tribe party, which I missed all of it because I was busy taking a Cody ride at the studio. I had to ride with Boo and I’m getting my ride in with Cody.

It’s hard to pick your priorities on Homecoming weekend.

It was like Sophie’s Choice there. I’m definitely closest to JSS Tribe with the folks there that I’ve gotten to know well like Janet Barr. I haven’t met Howard Godden and he’s the one person I haven’t met in person.

How is that possible?

Every time I’m in town, even at Homecoming, our paths didn’t cross. He was out of town when we were in the studio. He’s one of those people I have not met yet. I haven’t met Lisa Getty yet. She wasn’t at Homecoming. A lot of close friends. Another good friend from that tribe, Nicole Rachetti, Nikki_Pelos_For_Pizza. She’s my Phish, The Grateful Dead, Peloton friend. Whenever Jenn plays The Grateful Dead, we’re messaging each other. A lot of good friends in the Menaces. The #BooCrew page, I’m probably most active of the tribe page because I’m always posting something Cody-related to that page in addition to the OPP.

What state do you live in now?

Now we’re in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area in a town called Kenton, right next to Ann Arbor. My wife is from Ann Arbor and grew up here and went to Michigan. Our folks live down the road from us.

How often do you get to the studio? It sounds like fairly often for living far away.

I wish it was more often. It’s maybe once, twice a year if I’m lucky. When I go back to visit because I’m from Northern New Jersey originally, a little town called Summit. My sister still lives there and my mom’s there. We were there after Christmas and then I’ll be going back maybe twice for Jenn’s Men and maybe hopefully Homecoming. My mom tries to lure me back now to visit. She’s like, “You can go into the studio.” The fun thing was when we rode on a Sunday morning, my mom drove in with our son, our 7.5-year-old son Jackson. She drove into the city and brought him after the football ride ended. My mom got to meet Jenn, my son also got to meet Jenn and my wife met her for the first time as well when we rode together. My son loves Cody. He loves to say, “I’m going to snatch your wig.” The first thing he said to Jenn when he met her was, “Where’s Cody?” Jenn’s response was, “He’s probably still in bed from partying all night.” I jokingly refer to Jenn Sherman to my wife as my wife from another life because another lifetime, we totally would have hit it off because we have so much in common. I took a picture of just Jenn and my wife and I was like, “My two girls right here.” She knows how much I love Jenn.

You have an understanding wife.

We have a healthy relationship.

Do you have any advice for people getting their bikes?

This would have been great had I had it when I first got the bike and had taken it. I would say to the newcomers, don’t compare yourself. Everyone is from all levels of experience and walks of life. Don’t feel intimidated when you’re riding when you see someone with crazy numbers, crazy output. Like Cody says, it’s not that deep. Don’t take it seriously. The great thing is the community because when we first got the Peloton, we thought we were getting a bike. We had no idea of the community and all the friendships that awaited us. Embrace that community. Find your tribe once you gravitate towards an instructor or instructors. Seep yourself in that because there’s a lot of amazing people and there are many great things about it and it’s so much more than a bike.

Where can people find you on social media if you would like to be found? I have a feeling you would like to be found.

I have a public Instagram, which is a lot of Cody in there, as we know. I post everything that I post to the OPP on Instagram. It’s @JohnPrewitt. I also post all the compilations. I’ve got Denis compilations, Jenn Sherman compilations. I think I’m up to part 27 of Cody compilations, all on YouTube. My channel is PrewittJ1. There is a lot of good stuff on there.

That’s a lot of cool content for people. Stuff if you probably don’t always see, especially if you’re not taking live rides.

The Cody compilations I always put out usually every Friday. Friday seems to be a good day to put that out there. People seem to enjoy it. The one thing that I like about doing them is a lot of people are riding with them with Jenn or with Cody for the first time. I love seeing the comments like, “I haven’t taken a Cody ride yet.” His Backstreet Boys compilation inspired me to ride with him. I love it. I’ve given him free promotion there, so I’m sure he doesn’t mind. I’m working on a Jenn Sherman one. I put together a couple of pre-show compilations for Cody of pre-show moments that are a lot of fun. Usually, it’s comedic relief, but whenever there’s a cool, inspiring moment or funny, I’ll post that or I’ll add it into a compilation. As I’m riding, something happens, I make a quick note on my phone, the time and the moment and then I do a quick screen recording later in the day and splice it all together at some point and there it is.

Thank you for doing that. Those moments, they’re not captured. A lot of times, we’re taking a ride. It’s nice to have it captured in that way.

It’s a lot of fun. People seem to enjoy it. I’ll keep on doing it as long as people want to see it.

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your schedule to join us.

It’s good talking to you.

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139: Is Exercising Your Midlife Crisis? Plus Our Interview With Brock Masters

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


Peloton stock picks up steam after a bullish statement for Wedbush.

Is exercising the new midlife crisis?

The Peloton Prophet was proven right once again. Plus, there’s a NEW prediction.

AdWeek had an irritating article about Planet Fitness’ new “Bike of Shame” ad.

Dr. Ethan Goldstein is doing 365 consecutive days on the bike to help stroke victims.

We have what we believe to be the first sighting of a Tread in film and/or television. And it’s a big one.

The Peloton blog has thoughts on your morning routine.

Has science invented a pill that can replicate the effects of working out?

We have a new way for you to contact us.

Matty met Oprah!!!!

Emma Lovewell has a new series coming – Listening Party.

There’s a new artist spotlight focusing on Lady Gaga.

Irene is doing a live English ride.

The new Athleta line is available in the boutique.

All this plus our interview with Brock Masters!

Watch the episode here:

Listen to the podcast here:

Is Exercising Your Midlife Crisis? Plus Our Interview With Brock Masters

What do you have in store for people?

We have a few fun articles to discuss. We are going to discuss what’s going on with the stock market and we have Peloton profit updates and fun announcements, all kinds of good stuff.

Before we get to all that, shameless plugs, don’t forget we’re available on Apple podcast where you can rate, review, subscribe and the most important thing there is to subscribe. If you have a subscription, you’ll never miss an episode.

We’ll pop right up in your feed.

The high-dollar consultants tell us that we should let you know that the subscription is free. Sometimes people hear subscription and they get worried that could cost them money. That’s not true. It gets to cost you the amount of your cell phone and in your data package. You can find us on Facebook at While you’re there, like the page, join the group. You can also leave us a review there if you are inclined. We have a new review. This is from Melissa B. Quito. She says, “I eagerly await Friday so I can listen to these two. They are funny and informative on all things Peloton. I have the bike and love it. Crystal’s love of the tread convinced me to buy one. My husband, not so much since we now own a tread.” Her screen name now is Tonal and Single. Thank you very much for the review.

I’m glad you’re enjoying your tread. I sure love mine.

The website,, you can go there. You can sign up for our newsletter and every week, you will get links to everything and all the topics and one handy-dandy item delivered for free to you. That’s everything. Let’s dig in.

MarketWatch had a story about Peloton and stock gains.

They said that Peloton shares went up about 0.7% in pre-market trading after a Wedbush analyst, James Hardiman, initiated coverage of Peloton stock with an outperform rating and a $37 price target. They said, “Based on our analysis of the business model, our expansive survey work of both Peloton users and prospective customers and our own experience with the product, we do not believe Peloton will prove to be of a fad, but instead one of a small number of fitness companies likely to be an enduring force going forward.”

It’s everything we’ve been saying.

They need more people like this because it is true. He eventually thinks they’re going to get to four million subscribers, three million in the US up from 600,000 currently. That would be 2% of all US households. That’s a lofty goal. Honestly, I think that’s achievable.

I think it is too. If I owned a gym, first off, the snack machines would be amazing. If I owned a gym, I would be very worried right now. Peloton is doing to the fitness industry what Netflix did to network television and the movie industry. What Apple did to the cell phone industry and the music industry. It’s going to be a problem. They’ll never go away in the same way that every city will still have a bookstore, but you’re not going to find them like you used to.

It’s going to change. If nothing else, what’s in the gym will change.

There was an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal. It was about midlife crises. I thought it was interesting that they’re talking about people hitting their 40s and 50s and having a midlife crisis, but instead of banging their secretary or reaching and grabbing the bag of my own personal life, smoking meth. They’re getting fit.

They’re totally changing. It’s more about going on meditation retreats and doing yoga. It’s about that instead of wild girls weekend in Vegas.

Instead of like, “I’ll be dead soon. I should probably do something crazy.” They’re like, “What if I did something that made me not dead so soon?”

What an interesting change. I’m surprised it took that long. Is it even a midlife crisis if you’re doing something healthy? Can you even define it that way?

It’s like people grappling with their own mortality.

Does that mean I’m having a midlife crisis? Did Peloton give me a midlife crisis?

No, I would say it’s the other way around that you had one and then this was your solution for it. That’s interesting that people are like, “Let’s be proactive.”

It’s huge shift in mindset. That’s great.

My guess is also that it’s probably people that are happy in their lives. If you’re happy in your life and you’re like, “I’m getting closer to death, but I’m digging what’s going on in my life,” I would like more of that life.

You would be more motivated to do something healthy that’s going to benefit your life.

If you feel like you’ve wasted your entire life, that’s when you go out and do something crazy. I thought that was interesting that’s how people are acting these days. The Peloton Prophet, one of their corrections was accurate again. I don’t make it sound like it was one in five, but like “yet again” is how I should phrase that.

Peloton Prophet has nailed it yet again. It would be Eric Yeager, new instructor was officially announced. It’s a thing, he did his premiere ride and all that took place in Germany on German time, so I didn’t get to participate in any way, shape or form. I sure am happy for him and I’m happy for Germany now they have two instructors. Germany instructors are growing. It’s very cool.

Fresh on the heels of that prediction coming to fruition, a new prediction lands on our doorstep.

The Peloton Prophet believes the new Power Zone instructors will be revealed Saturday, January 18th during the Dual Power Zone ride. They also think they know who it is. I want to say that, but I’m not going to, unless you think I should.

I don’t know. What does the prophet think you should do?

I didn’t ask the prophet this one. Gotcha. I would be calling an audible. The prophet feels and the tingly sensation that the prophet gets says it’s going to be Christine D’Ercole. There was not a second one revealed to the prophet via the tingly sensation. I have a feeling that I know who the second one is, if we even have a second one. All good things. All I know that the Peloton Prophet felt strongly about was that we were going to hear about it soon.

I’m concerned personally about the prophet’s tingly sensation. Are there some circulation issues going on there?

I don’t question the prophet. I have learned not to question the prophet.

The profit would know like, “This is a heart attack. I’ve prophesized it. I should go to the doctor.” Adweek had an article about the Planet Fitness anti-Peloton/soul cycle ad.

The Bike of Shame.

It’s a self-congratulatory article. I say that because I thought saying self-filleting was too harsh. In retrospect, this article irritated me.

I would love to hear why it irritated you.

It’s because they were so proud of themselves. This is the Bike of Shame ad that everybody’s been sharing. First off, to me the ad reeks of desperation. When you have to go that negative on your competition, it means you don’t have anything positive to say about yourself. Beyond that, it says to me that they have written off anyone who has a Peloton because anyone who has a Peloton knows what they’re depicting is factually inaccurate. It’s not true in any way, shape or form. They have to know that. They’re in the industry. For them to take that stance, it borders on gas lighting. To me, it says, “We know we’re not getting any Peloton people back. Once they go to Peloton, we’ve lost them forever. F those people, let’s scare the non-Peloton people into thinking that’s what Peloton is. Thinking this is what they’re going to get if they buy the bike.”

I feel like we need to explain to our audience that we know that this commercial doesn’t look like they’re after Peloton because it doesn’t say anything about Peloton. We know that. That’s not how Peloton is. We know that the ad itself doesn’t depict Peloton. The reason that we feel that this company is going after Peloton is because this article specifically says that at the end of the year, they were going with a completely different ad spot, and then all the stuff happened with Peloton’s ad with the Peloton lady, the Christmas gift, etc. They decided to change gears and go with this ad to pile on to Peloton. That is why Tom is saying what he’s saying. There are a lot of people that don’t get it. They didn’t stop to read the article. There are a lot of people that were like, “This doesn’t apply to Peloton.” I know that. That’s my point. That’s why I’m so mad. It’s rude. It’s exactly scaring people who don’t have a Peloton into thinking this is what Peloton is like, when nothing could be further from the truth.

That’s what irritates me about the self-congratulatory tone of the article. What I think is going on is I think they’re seeing their social media metrics rise because the ad is getting shared a lot. What’s driving its, I hate to say viralness because it never got to that level, but what’s driving that I think is a lot of Peloton people going, “That’s BS.”

There are people that think it’s funny. I will also say how hypocritical our entire society is that they will get mad at Peloton for creating a commercial that they added context to in order to make it controversial. Yet, we have a completely rude commercial tearing down all of its competitors and everyone’s congratulating them, including themselves. No one has a problem with it. They think it’s funny. What is wrong with these people?

I’m not a fan of that article at all.

I’m not a fan of the article. I’m not a fan of the ad.

I don’t think that they’re succeeding in the way that they think they’re succeeding.

A lot of people don’t like Planet Fitness anyway because of their stupid lunk bell or lunk meter or whatever it is. I don’t go to them because I have an awesome gym in my basement, so I don’t need to.

It’s funny when the ads are like, “It’s a judgment-free zone.”

Your whole ad is about judgment.

Your ad is judging something. Ultimately, Planet Fitness can’t control what the other people in the gym do. You have no way to guarantee that’s a judgment-free zone.

Instead, you show people sitting on a bike, barely moving their legs and call that a workout. That’s also insulting to people who actually want to work out and challenge themselves. That’s great that you don’t have anybody pushing you, including yourself, if you don’t know how to push yourself because you’ve never learned, myself included. I’m talking about people like me, that is the best reason to have somebody teaching you in a class so that you can learn to go beyond your comfort zone. If you don’t know how to take yourself out of that comfort zone, you’re not going to do it. Sitting on a bike and peddling aimlessly with no thought to it is not good for everybody. That’s fine for people who know what they’re doing. I don’t think there’s a whole lot of them out there.

There are not, even the ones that are out there that didn’t start there.

Everybody had learned somewhere.

On a more upbeat note, The Jewish News had an interesting article.

Dr. Ethan Goldstein vows to ride his Peloton for 365 days. This gentleman is part of our lovely Peloton community. He is riding his Peloton bike for 365 days. All because he wants to raise awareness for the National Stroke Association in honor of his father. He’s been doing this. He was coming up on the last day already. It says, “So far, Goldstein has stuck to his goal. Although it’s hard to find motivation at times, he often reminds himself of a quote shared by one of the Peloton instructors, “I want you to take this ride for somebody who can’t.” May 5th will mark Goldstein’s 365th consecutive day of riding his bike. This date will also be four days after his father’s stroke 23 years ago.”

What an exciting, wonderful way to honor your dad. That’s fabulous. His dad actually passed away in December, so that’s probably why they wrote the article because he had already been working on it and that’s probably one of the reasons that the article was written. We are all supporting you. If there’s anything that we can do, you should reach out and let us know. I don’t know if Ethan Goldstein reads this, but if any of you know him, tell him we are all cheering him on.

There’s also a GoFundMe that he has set up in conjunction with this where all the proceeds go to the National Stroke Association. I would also like to point out how mature I’m being about all this because I just said the National Stroke Association. Where, pray tell, are you at in your Tonal journey?

I just started my tenth week and I am on my third week of my second program. I’m about to finish it up because I have four more workouts to do and then I’m done with my second program. I have gains like 60% of strength. Nine weeks, that’s insane. It’s really cool. I’m very excited about it. I love it as much today as I did at the beginning.

It’s the same way I feel about you. Do you still feel like you’re seeing the benefits of the strength training when you use the bike and/or tread?

Yeah. I’ve been trying to work out more so I’m not seeing PRs because when you spread yourself out, at least for me, when I spread myself out over multiple sports, I don’t have as much energy for any one of them. I tend to not be as well-rusted between workouts. I’m not seeing those PRs. I also was sick in there for a week and I also wasn’t feeling so great with my energy levels and I wasn’t sleeping. I had a whole bunch of stuff happening. It could also be all in reference to that. This week, I’ve been feeling a lot better from the tonal perspective, like how strong I have felt. They get on Facebook pretty often or on Instagram actually, and they’ll be live and they’ll be talking about things. One of the lives that they did, they said that if you are even 2% dehydrated, it can affect how much your strength, how much output you put into a push by 30%. You can feel 30% weaker on any given day by being only 2% dehydrated. That stuck with me.

You wouldn’t think it’d be to that degree.

I haven’t seen as much with the tread and the bike, that same output, but I have started to see definition in my arms, which is very exciting. I have a tiny baby bicep right there?

The odd thing is she’s pointing to her calf.

No, those are gigantor.

You can take the Commit to Fit offer that they’ve got going on, which is a pretty sweet deal.

You have to buy by January 20th for this to count. It’s a very cool deal. You get it and then you do twelve workouts in 30 days and you get $250 back.

That’s a great deal. That’s a great way to encourage people. People always have the perception that you buy fitness equipment and you’ll leave it alone and don’t touch it. If you’re reading this blog, then you probably bought a Peloton and you know that not to be true. For you personally, you’ve overcome that. That’s a great way for people to prime the pump, if you will. You can sweat it out with workouts from strength training, the cardio to yoga and you can learn more about the Commit to Fit challenge at

A while back, we talked about there was somebody on a movie set and they were looking for a tread. The treads had just started to trickle into the marketplace. There weren’t a lot out there and they wanted one for a scene in a movie and they were wanting someone to basically loan them the tread and they would cover the shipping and they were desperately trying to find a tread for a movie that they were shooting in Miami.

I do remember that. I remember that very well.

We figured out what the movie is and it was, Bad Boys for Life. I went to see it at a special screening. There’s a scene in Will Smith’s super badass Miami bachelor pad that’s very sleek and the kind of thing only a single guy could have, because if you had kids it wouldn’t look like that. He’s got a Peloton tread overlooking the city on his balcony that he’s out running on. He’s even got a Peloton water bottle with the letter P that is facing the camera. It’s featured very prominently like you see him running on it. Then he gets done running and he stands there and has a pretty lengthy conversation standing in front of it.

I wanted them to use my tread for that.

We live too far away.

I was all on board and I wanted to meet the actors. They wouldn’t even tell me who the actors were at the time. Now, I wish that would have worked out. That would’ve been amazing.

That would’ve been pretty cool. Also for what it’s worth, it was a good movie. If you like the Bad Boys movies, I think this movie is everything you want in a Bad Boys movie.

That is good to know as well.

There was a neat, little article on the Peloton blog about best morning routines.

They titled it Breaking Down the Myths Of a Successful Morning. They talk about all the different myths, like for example, workout first thing in the morning. Is it better to do that or is it not better to do that? It depends on what works best for you. Sometimes, that’s going to be better for you to work out in the evenings. Sometimes it’s going to be better in the morning. It depends on your schedule, your family but don’t him yourself in is the bottom line.

I think all things being equal, they say that you’re probably better off to do it in the morning, but I think the larger point they’re trying to make is that if doing it in the morning isn’t going to happen and doing it at night is, do the one that’s going to happen.

What’s interesting about that is when I got my Peloton at the end of the year back, it said that I was a an early bird and that 46% of all Peloton users were also early birds, which makes perfect sense to me. Also interesting is that over this year, I have moved away from morning workouts. It’s not working with the schedule anymore. I don’t know if it’s because I changed jobs. I don’t know if it’s a new schedule. I’m not sure what it is, but I’m enjoying working out at night more right now.

I wonder if it’s about it not being new anymore, that when you first get into an exercise routine, you feel like, and I’ve heard you say this, “If don’t do it in the morning, it’s not going to happen.” Now that it’s part of your regular schedule, it’s part of your lifestyle and who you are, it’s a thing you do, it’s easier to do later in the day because you’re like, “I want to do this, but I also want to sleep.” In the past, you would sleep and never get around to doing it. Where now you’re like, “I’ve been doing this for years now, it’s who I am.” You’re more apt to go knock it out at 7:00 on a Friday rather than not doing it at all.

I don’t know. I hope that’s true. I like it. It sounds good.

If it sounds good and it makes you happy with me, then that’s it. Go with that.

This whole article has all kinds of different myths that you can look at and see what works best for you.

I’ve been finding articles. I’ve been on a little bit of a roll, but I don’t think anyone would be surprised that I found this article. This article is all about the likelihood of a pill replacing exercise.

I was shocked when I read this because it says that this pill could replace the exercise protein. It actually mimics the same effects with working out.

It says that when you’re done exercising, they can see that this chemical is on your muscles. They poured it on some rat muscles, in living rats, they didn’t tear open a rat. It was like the equivalent of having worked out even though they didn’t just put that protein on their muscles.

Doesn’t that seem impossible?

I know. That’s some Jetsons stuff right there.

It was flies, not rats. They crawled up and down the test tube to get out.

They had some that they would train for a couple of weeks and let them do it, so they’d get better. Then they had some that didn’t train at all. They gave them the Sestrin and then they were instantly better than the flies who had trained. The fascinating part to me was they took flies that they had trained and gave them the Sestrin and they were no better than the flies they just gave Sestrin.

Think about the implications of that because people already are so lazy. They would never move. If you could take a pill and you don’t have to exercise, you would never move. For real, that would not be good for people. Your body is meant to move. It scares me because this is something that you very well in 30 years are going to hear how it causes cancer.

That would make me wonder like, “Is that a concern long-term?” They also said that there are some positive uses for it that aren’t necessarily to reward the lazy like for the elderly or if you have wasting disease.

I like their examples. It showed me that their head was in the right place. They were thinking about people who were infirm and unable to work out in some way, whether it be the elderly or somebody who might have some spine injury and they can’t walk and they’re not getting the exercise they need. It would be great for those applications. It scares me that other people would take advantage of it and not use it in the way it was intended. That’s pretty much everything we’ve ever done in our entire society.

Welcome to human nature. You have a phone number that you put out on the internet. You said you had an idea for someone we should interview, “You should call this number and leave your suggestions.” You’ve got hundreds of suggestions, but not one phone call.

It turns out none of you like to call things. That was what I learned. Also, you all have no idea how many episodes we have or who we’ve actually interviewed. I know there are tons of you that tune in every week and you know everybody we’ve interviewed. Also, we’ve interviewed 139 people at this time. It’s a lot of people. I had not realized that that much time had passed. I know it logically but we’ve got a lot of great suggestions. It’s going to take me a long time to sort through them because think about it, 52 covers an entire year. You gave me 300, so it’s going to take a while. Thank you, everyone.

You should plot out every one that they suggested and then find out their ages and then do the older ones first.

If you ever want to give us a call and you can ask a question, you can leave a comment, you can say anything that you would like that we can play on the show. That number is (636) 345-5023. Do not worry, I’m never going to pick up that number. You can call anytime, day or night. It’s just a voicemail and it’s a Google number. You’re not getting a private phone number. Call about anything. We want to start putting you on the show. We want to take little tidbits.

It’ll be fun. We didn’t get around to this but Matty Maggiacomo met Oprah.

Two of my favorite people were hugging. I’ve gotten to hug Matty, which was awesome. I met him pre-Oprah.

By the Kevin Bacon Theory, you’ve hugged Oprah.

No, because I hugged him pre-Oprah. I know it’s cool when you get to meet stars, but he hugged Oprah. It was a cozy hug. It was not a side hug.

I’m now a little freaked out about this theory because I shook Tommy Lee’s hand.

I met you after that. Does that mean I touched Tommy Lee?

I’m lucky, I’m not a walking Petri dish.

Who was that guy in that band that kissed you that one time?

Smash Mouth.

You’ve also kissed everybody that Smash Mouth has kissed.

I was doing a stage announcement to introduce Smash Mouth during that sixteen-week window where they matter. As I’m doing it, he sneaks up behind me and puts his arms around me and nuzzles me and kisses the nape of my neck. It was a little weird. There’s a new series from Emma Lovewell coming.

This is pretty cool. It’s another signature ride. In case you might have lost track. We’ve got the Sundays with Love, with Ally Love. We’ve got The Jess King Experience on Thursdays. Every once in a while, we do Spotlight with Alex Toussaint. We’re going to have Listening Party. These rides are going to be a complete music discovery tool. Sometimes it’s going to be indie artists, emerging artists, deep cuts. It’s all over the place. It’s going to be very cool stuff. They’re going to be twenty minutes long and they’re going to be released on demand midnight Eastern on Friday, once a month. This one is going to happen on January 17th.

The other cool part of this is that Emma Lovewell is organizing a group ride for this one that she’s going to be actually on the leaderboard. It’s Friday at 9:00 AM, so people will probably not even have a chance to listen to this before it happens. She’s going to be on at 9:00 AM Eastern and she’s going to be on the leaderboard throwing up high fives, which I thought was cool. It’s indie artists, emerging artists and deep cuts. I think it’s new. DJ John Michael was also seen helping her put this together as part of his new role. They were working on that together, which is also very cool.

Speaking of rides to keep an eye out for. You’re going to have some Lady Gaga content coming your way, who is rumored to be your new Audrey, which I think is a wonderful choice. Irene has a live English ride coming up.

I’m excited about this. This is the first live ride one out of Germany. It was on Hannah Marie Corbin‘s social media, I believe it was on Instagram. You definitely want to check that out. It’ll be a good opportunity to check out how she cues, but hearing in English.

Finally, the new Athleta line is up.

This is the one I told you about that had all of our awesome Peloton members and we gave a shout out to them. They are all being featured on all the Peloton social media channels. Congrats again to everyone. The line looks beautiful. From what I understand, at least one or two pieces sold out right away. It’s very cool.

Joining us is Brock Masters. Brock, how is it going?

How are you doing?

First of all, congratulations on that name. You sound an action star. It sounds badass.

I have kind parents. I have two siblings, Clark Masters and Drake Masters. We’re all blessed with pretty strong names.

It has hard consonants. It sounds like a book that they would have children read in the ‘50s. It’s like a boys’ adventure story.

Brock, I always start off by asking everybody how they found Peloton. That’s what brings us all together after all.

My wife and I decided to get a Groupon to a local spin club. As our Groupon was coming to an end, we were trying to make a decision on whether or not we wanted to join that club. That’s about the same time that I started seeing advertisements for Peloton and newscasts about this new platform. That would have been early 2015. We looked into it and decided to pull the trigger and we’ve had the bike ever since.

That’s similar to your story, except for the Groupon and doing it with a spouse.

The spouse part never happens in this house.

Getting up and going downstairs was a lot easier than getting up and leaving the house at 4:40 on a cold Chicago winter morning.

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It makes a huge difference.

It’s much more motivating to go downstairs, get a hot coffee, jump up on the bike within ten minutes of being up, and having to start the car and leave the house.

I was having this conversation with somebody. One of my coworkers was telling me how they didn’t understand how I spent that much on the Peloton. They were like, “Do you know how long I could work out for what you pay for that?” I’m like, “I don’t go there. That’s the problem.”

I had two friends purchase a Peloton after seeing the clip I threw up on the group page. They got motivated and each bought a bike themselves.

Did they use your referral code?

They did and my wife’s got a beautiful Lululemon pants as a result.

Brock, I know that when you posted on the official Peloton page as we lovingly call the OPP. You posted that you have Spina Bifida. Tell us about that and how that affects you in your life.

I was born with a neural tube birth defect called Spina Bifida. It affects anywhere up and down the spinal column. It had an effect on my lower extremities, musculature, bone development, as well as my bowel and bladder. I wasn’t diagnosed until the age of ten. Leading up to that point of a “normal childhood” I was on the local kids’ track and field team. I did the long jump, but I always suffered from some bowel incontinence issues and they couldn’t figure out what it was. Early on, it was diagnosed as behavioral. As I got older, it was clearly not the case. They thought that maybe I had some tropical parasites. I hit puberty at a young age and it was at that time, my feet started to deform and the issues with my bladder started forming and that’s when the diagnosis of Spina Bifida came after an MRI.

I didn’t realize that it could be diagnosed later in childhood. I thought it was usually right at birth.

It typically is, but there are a lot of people out there living with Spina Bifida who may not realize they have it and it does cause no adverse effects on their life. I fell into that middle ground where the tethering of my spinal cord was such that when I started growing from hitting puberty, it presented itself in a physical manifestation, which was the deformation of my legs and feet.

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


When you get a diagnosis like that, what’s the reaction? Is there a moment of, “At least now we know what’s up?”

For my parents and my family, it was suddenly like, “That’s why everything has been happening.” You move into the uncertainty. What does that mean for fixing the issue or managing it? What does our child need to go through in order to have a normal life? Will they have a normal job? Will they be ambulatory? Will they be wheelchair-bound? All of those things go through a parent’s mind. That’s why when I first did put up that post, I opted to get back into track and field and wheelchair racing after going down to McCormick Place in Chicago. The University of Illinois has a large track and field team and a number of their participants race the Chicago Marathon. They had this display set up so the average person off the street could hop in a racing wheelchair and see what it’s like. I was down there with my wife, Andrea. I said, “I haven’t done this or been in one of those things in years.”

I broke my shoulder a few Christmases ago and had a pretty extensive recovery surgery. The doctor said, “There’s a lot of things you probably won’t be able to do again, including heavy weightlifting.” My recovery and went well back to the gym. I thought, “I’m going to hop in this chair and see if I still got it.” I jumped in. It sounds like a cliché but riding a bike felt riding a bike. I was able to get up a pretty good clip on my first time back in the bucket. The next day, I said to my wife, “I want to race the Chicago Marathon.” That’s when I signed up and decided that I would raise money for the Illinois Spina Bifida Association.

What was her reaction to that? Was she worried?

She was super supportive. She’s always been behind me in my endeavors, both with work and physical activity. She went through a lot with me when I had the recovery. She had to learn how to cauterize somebody and learn how to manage a colostomy. A lot was put on her shoulders for the initial four-month recovery until I could take back and manage my own personal care. This was seen as a great opportunity for me to jump back into something I love.

My hats off to her. She’s pretty badass to be able to learn all of those things.

It was an eye-opener for her as well because she knew what the steps were for me to manage these things but never had to experience them personally. It was truly something that brought us closer together as a couple.

That’s a nice positive thing that came out of something that I’m sure was something difficult to go through. I am curious how you became an athlete. Was it because you were already running track and field before your diagnosis? It’s so easy as a kid, I did nothing and I was perfectly able-bodied. I only did what the gym teacher made me do. I can’t imagine becoming an athlete and you have a condition that makes it hard.

Post the age of ten, I’d gone from 10 to 16, probably having roughly anywhere from 2 to 4 operations a year to do corrective actions on my legs, feet, and back. At the age of sixteen, I was using a wheelchair quite a bit in high school because I was always having corrective surgery. It was my father, who is a notorious newspaper article clipper. He came home from work one day and said, “You’ve got to see this article.” It’s about this kid named Joey Radmore, who was a Paralympic athlete at the age of seventeen and was champion in his own class. Joey had cerebral palsy. You put them in a racing chair. It’s almost it magically disappeared and hit one countless event at the Paralympics. As a teenager, you’re like, “Dad, that’s crazy. I’m not going to go look this guy up in the white pages and tell him I want to race wheelchairs.”

I happen to be going to the local wheelchair repair shop to get some work done. This guy Joey was there on a high school coop. I serendipitously got to meet him and told him that I’d heard about him. He invited me out to the local track to do a practice with them. I hopped in the race chair and I did one lap. His stepfather, who was the coach at the time said, “We’re going to track meet in Toronto and you’re on the team.” That was cutting my teeth in track and field. This was a real passion of mine for years.

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


As time went on, my condition started to worsen. It turned out that I had more neurological damage that needed to be addressed in my spinal column. I had this fourth operation on my back, roughly about a fifteen-hour surgery. I was given a pretty bleak outcome being told that there was a high probability that this operation would land me in a wheelchair full-time. To my happiness, I woke and I could tell by the smile on my surgeon’s face, who is predominantly a neutral guy. It must have gone well.

I can’t even imagine, first of all, a fifteen-hour surgery. Let alone going into that surgery knowing that you may be wheelchair-bound forever. It’s probably one of those circumstances where if you don’t the opportunity isn’t great either.

We knew the condition was going to degradate if I didn’t do it, and there was a possibility that it could halt or possibly even improve my situation if I had it done. We had a big family meeting at the time. We had a stick shift car. The parents were like, “Don’t worry about that. We have to put in a ramp. We’ll get a manual.” All those things were discussed. As a family, we decided it was the best course of action. After all that happened, that’s when I discovered cycling on two wheels and got myself involved in cycling.

If anyone hasn’t seen the video, which is probably a lot of people that are reading this, how does that work? How do you marry the two?

I’m in a unique position where I am ambulatory on two feet. I do walk with a limp but my legs are atrophied. Meaning the muscle tone in certain muscle groups does not exist. I don’t have any calf muscle, the ability to stand on my tippy toes, my hamstrings are quite small. I have virtually no buttocks, but I have large quadriceps so that the front muscle, the pushing muscle. What was unique about cycling was I learned how to clip in right away. I realized that you don’t need a lot of those other muscles to marry the emotion of going in a circle.

As I progressed my cycling abilities, the muscle tone I did have got quite strong. I’ve been on a couple of group rides and out riding. I toured with a group called Velo Quebec out of Montreal, Canada. We did a seven-day trip with my father. You meet a lot of people and you’re in bike shorts. I remember one day this French-Canadian guy coming up to me and going, “How is this work? Your legs are so small. It doesn’t make sense.” I’m like, “I don’t know how it works. All I know is it does. I live to pedal.” We were doing 1,000 kilometer or 60-mile days holding speeds of roughly 20 to 22 miles per hour.

For me, it was that opportunity to participate with my peers and get out and be active. Cycling has been in my blood for a long time same with wheelchair racing. That opportunity presented itself. I still had my old racing wheelchair from when I was seventeen years old. After I opted to do the marathon, I wrote a proposal letter to my company. I work for a company that manufactures ostomy supplies and continence care supplies called Hollister Incorporated. I wrote them a proposal and I was fortunate that they were willing to sponsor me. That helped provide some of the funds to purchase the new racing wheelchair that I have.

A racing wheelchair, is that specially made to work on trainers because I was fascinated by your setup? It looks like a bike trainer but with a wheelchair. Please explain this because I’m not good at that kind of technology.

The racing chair that I purchased is probably about 85% carbon fiber. The whole setup is six feet long and has disk wheels in the back. You sit on your legs, so they’re tucked in behind you. It comes in around under fourteen pounds. It’s light and strong. The trainer that the chair is on is a giant roller or a drum that the back wheel locks into and it allows you to pedal or push at a similar clip and cadence as you would be if you’re on the street.

Is that a special trainer that they make specially for racing wheelchairs?

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It’s not off the shelf. I’ll make sure you have a photo that you can share with the readers. It’s roughly 3.5 feet across. The drum is probably six inches in diameter and that trainer that I’m sitting on weighs about 170 pounds.

Did you make it?

There’s a company out of North of Quebec City that manufactures them as well as a couple of American companies. I myself is a Canadian, so I went with the Canadian route and order this product up.

You’re able to ride a bike and the Peloton normally. It is the wheelchair aspect. Do you use that as your basis for running?

I can’t physically run. I’m sure if you put a bear behind me, I’d muster up the strength to do it. Otherwise, running and I aren’t friends. I prefer possible not to have to walk long distances. I’m a fairly big guy. I come in about 195 pounds. Both my legs are about as thin as skin and bones in a couple of areas. Cycling was an opportunity for me to travel long distances under my own power and not exhausting myself. Back when I lived in Toronto, I used to go for a 35-mile bike ride every single day after work. We had some nice waterfront paths. Coming up with this new opportunity to start wheeling and to do the marathon, that is truly the equivalent of running. I started thinking about my training platform and we have the benefit of having the mobile app with the Peloton. For me, I thought, “This is fantastic. I’ve got the trainer in the basement and they launched the Amazon platform app. I got that on my Fire stick.” When the spring hits, I’ll be able to use the outdoor reading platform to not only track my distance but do different sorts of sprint metrics, be able to do different training exercises as well as listening to great music.

To that point, we noticed that on your video you were training with a bike video. Tom is the one that asked me and he said, “Is there any reason that you were training to a bike class versus a running class?”

For me, cycling is in my blood that I take the Peloton classes on the bike all the time. It almost has felt unnatural to get on and do one of the tread classes. I love the cycling classes. The music’s always great. I’ve grown to know some of the instructors and I think of them as my cycling family. For me, using the bike app was the way to go.

I have a question about your Canadian roots. I’m curious as someone who has a lifelong medical condition. What makes you leave a country with socialized medicine to come to a country without socialized medicine?

Socialized medicine as a funny thing because depending on what province you’re from, things can change from area to area. For example, in Canada, you can have your ostomy operation and that for me was having a colostomy or a bowel diversion. Depending on what province you’re in, the surgery may be paid for but those products may be either partially subsidized, 100% covered or totally out of your pocket. It is different depending on what province you are in. I’m from Ontario where a number of things are covered but dental, vision and prescription are out of pocket if you don’t have a supplementary health insurance program.

Do they have issues when people go to other provinces? Do they card you? If you don’t have the right driver’s license, they say no dice. Will people move if one is better based on their personal situation?

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


That could well be the case. A good example is Saskatoon. It has full coverage for catheters if you have a spinal cord injury or spina bifida. Depending on if you were born with a condition or maybe had an injury and don’t have subsidization through either your work and insurance coverage. You may choose to move to a different province.

They won’t fight you on that? They won’t treat you as an immigrant? From here, state to state is no big deal and I didn’t know since there’s money attached to it.

Would that be different?

Would they put up a fight saying, “We’re not going to take and everybody that has all these special issues?”

Not to my knowledge.

That’s something that we do.

I’ve been with my company, Hollister Incorporated, for years. I worked with the Canadian team for seven years. I decided that there was an opportunity to start developing product ideas based on my experience in sales. After submitting multiple patent applications, I was asked if I’d be interested in moving down to the United States and working in research and development full-time. That was my ticket to come down and move to the United States.

At my previous job, I worked for a healthcare company and one of our contracted companies was Hollister. I noticed that when you said you got into racing, you explained how that got into your blood. You talked about having a specific track bike, single-track bike. How is that different from a regular road bike?

It’s like going out to the forest and ripping through the woods in full suspension mountain bike generically putting it.

I was making that way harder than it was. I thought it was some special racing bike. What inspired you besides wanting to do this and to sign up for the Chicago Marathon? Have you been wanting to do a marathon or was it that moment in the chair?

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When I was in my early twenties, I competed in a sprint triathlon, where it was a one-kilometer swim, a fifteen or twenty-kilometer bike ride and a ten-kilometer run. I did that and swam the swimming portion. I rode the bike portion and instead of running, I use the race chair. That was probably one of the last events I did. At that time, I thought that doing a marathon would be a pretty cool experience. Having had the back operation and not being able to further that opportunity at the time fell by the wayside. In the last couple of years, the thought has been in my mind and as my shoulder recovered, and I realized that the strength was there. I always wondered if I could get back in the chair. My old chair being 22 years old, I’ve put on a couple of pounds since I was seventeen years old. It was putting two sausages in one casing. It wasn’t until I got to go down to McCormick Place and sit down in a larger seat that I realized that I still got this in me and the opportunity presented itself.

It was quite serendipitous. A woman that I’d met many years ago at an event in Ontario saw the video that I had posted on Facebook about me at the event at McCormick Place. She and her friend who runs the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association reached out to me and said, “Brock, I saw that you’re doing this. Would you be interested in coaching young kids?” I don’t think I waited two minutes to reply, “Yes.” This all happened within a week and I’m involved with the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association. They’re an incredible affiliation out of the Chicago land area. The statistic is that roughly 30% of the athletes who compete in the Paralympic track and field come from their club. They are a force to be reckoned with and I have the opportunity to work with and coach young athletes. They’re a great club and a great club for me to be able to train with as well. They have a number of athletes who compete in the marathon every year. I’ll have the opportunity once the weather gets better to get outside and start working with the people to do the marathon.

How do people who might have kids or maybe other loved ones in their family who want to do Adaptive Sports get into that? Do they do a Google search to find out what’s near them? Are there several places that do that and work with people who want to do more, but don’t exactly know what they should be doing?

There are clubs all across the United States. I would suggest looking up the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association. Cindy and her team are affiliated with clubs all around the country. If you’re not in the Greater Chicago and/or Illinois area, they can certainly put people in touch with the right people who can concert up either loved ones or friends or family with a local club that they can get involved with.

I have a question for you about the Chicago Marathon. When you sign up for a marathon, do you automatically have to raise money? Do you become a fundraiser automatically? Is that something you can opt-in to?

For someone myself, who was coming out of the woodwork deciding to do this, there are a couple of ways you can get involved. You can either try and get an initial spot when the marathon goes live. You can enter into a lottery and there’s X amount of additional spots available. You could either be an elite athlete and have qualified for Chicago, or you can do what I’m doing, which is opting in to raise money for a charity.

You chose the Illinois Spina Bifida Association, I assume, because that is a cause near and dear to your heart.

I went to McCormick Place and that was on a Saturday. The race was on a Sunday, the actual marathon and on Monday, I contacted the Illinois Association Spina Bifida and said, “I’m going to do the marathon.” On Tuesday, Amy and Cindy reached out to me about the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association and I got involved with them. It made it all truly came together within one week.

What is the goal that you are trying to raise for the Spina Bifida Association?

I was given a goal of $1,250. I put out a Facebook campaign as well as a GoFundMe Charity campaign that was specifically through the Illinois Spina Bifida Association. I was able to raise close to $1,000 within my first campaign. I put the campaign on the Peloton community Facebook page. Within four hours I had raised almost $2,000. I’ve over doubled my goal for the year and I still plan to do some fundraising as we move through. I was truly touched. Within four hours, the Peloton community sponsored me to almost $2,000.

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


They’re going to raise your goal, you probably should have paced yourself a little bit more. They’ll go, “Fancy pants.”

I received a kind email from the association that was thrilled to see that I signed up in late November 2019, and by January 2020 I’d already doubled my goal for them. They were they’re appreciative. I’m appreciative of the community.

What do they specifically do for people who have spina bifida? How do they help them?

What’s great about these associations is they are a resource to parents who have young children who don’t know where to go and don’t know what’s facing them. They need to find information on neurologists, orthopedic surgeons or neurologists. As people get older, they act as a community and help to bridge that gap between the pediatric environment and the normal medical care system. You can imagine if you spent your entire life as a kid going into the hospital where there’s lollipops, clowns, doctors and parents who are there to turning eighteen and hearing your name and a number in a cold medical center. They help with that transition and prepare people to take on their own care, and places having their parents there with them. Also, it provides a community and an event planning environment. For example, the Illinois Spina Bifida Association is hosting an adult night for anyone who is an adult, over eighteen who has Spina Bifida come out, join and watch a roller derby tournament. They also provide social experience.

That’s great that they do so many things. This is not the first time that you have been involved with raising awareness or raising money. I know that you were also a volunteer for a youth ostomy program. How did that come to be?

Prior to joining Hollister, I had my own manufacturing company in Canada that made ostomy accessories. Through the Canadian Ostomy Association, I met a group of individuals who every year would put on this youth camp. For me, the first time I heard the word ostomy or stoma, I was fifteen. The idea of getting a bag at fifteen years old isn’t an awful idea. I thought to have the surgery for years until I was about twenty years old. After a trip to England, I’m living in a tent and having to manage my bowel routine in a different fashion. It became apparent that this was going to be the best opportunity for improved quality of life. When I was 23 years old, I had the opportunity to be a volunteer at this camp. One of the things I love about the camp was that we had kids anywhere from the age of 8 to 18 who had either bowel or bladder diversion.

The camp also took in kids who needed to have one of these surgeries but was reluctant to have it. They had the opportunity to see other kids, peers their age running around, having fun, going on the water slides, doing high ropes courses, mountain biking. Doing all these activities, swimming in a pool and not being held back by their condition. I thought for myself that if had that experience, I probably would have had the surgery a lot younger. I was fortunate that I get to volunteer for one week every summer for over a decade.

That’s amazing for kids to be able to see. That makes a lot of sense. Thank you for doing that. What a great program.

It’s my pleasure. If there are any readers who have friends or family who have young children who have an ostomy or a bladder diversion of some kind, they can look up the United Ostomy Association of America‘s youth rally, or the United Ostomy Association of Canada’s youth camp. Those are both two fantastic programs. They work to raise money to help fly out kids whose families maybe can’t afford it. These kids form bonds for life with peers, who understand what they’re going through. Through their youth into adulthood remain close friends and a support network.

How was that when you finally pull the trigger on that? Once you got on the other side, were you like, “I should have done this sooner?”

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


I’ll be frank and say that it took a good six months to realize that this was the right decision to make and like anything, it changes a challenge. As adults or even teenagers, you forget what a pain in the butt it was for your parents to toilet train you as a kid and that you hated it. It’s the same similar process. This is a new experience and you have to learn how to manage it. Once someone emotionally adapts to having this operation, they realize that it’s not a limiting factor to their ability to lead a fully enriched fulfilled life as a person.

It sounds like a process of mourning because you’re mourning the loss of the control of your body in a way. I can see that that would be difficult to wrap your head around an emotional level. It makes a lot of sense that you have to go through a process.

For me, part of that was cycling. I started to realize that this wasn’t going to hold me back. I was worried about leakage, skin health and all of these problems. You find the right products that meet your needs and certainly for me, that was within the family of Hollister. It was serendipitous that I ended up coming to work for them as an organization. These products provide me the full ability to live my life to its full potential and for that, I’m grateful.

Was that a coincidence that you ended up working for them? Were you already traveling in those circles and fell into it? How did that come about?

I had my own company and I was having some differences of opinion with my business partner. I had been traveling to different trade shows around Canada. The people at Hollister were always so kind to me. I was a party of one at these events. They’d invite me out for a drink and they’d have me sit at the table with them. I’d said to my father at a young age, “If I ever went to work for one of the big manufacturers, the only one I would consider working for was Hollister.” Sure enough, they approached me for a job in Canada and I sold my organization. I join them without thinking twice about it. That was years ago.

It seems your whole life has been affected by this but you’ve also found ways to not only process it emotionally but give back to other people who it seems that they might be struggling with it. It seems to touch every part of your life is what I’m trying to say.

As you move forward and you see people who have either had something an ostomy or spinal cord injury and need to use contents care products. The one thing that helps people recover both physically and emotionally is sports and physical activity. For me, this was a great opportunity to get out and share that message with people. For example, for the Spina Bifida Association, I do believe that I am probably one of the first people who has spina bifida who will be racing on behalf of their organization. I’m excited about that. I’m grateful for Hollister themselves to provide me with a financial donation to buy a racing wheelchair.

How can our audience help out? Maybe they didn’t see your post originally. How can they chip in or take part in some capacity?

If they’re interested, I would encourage them to look up both the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association and the Illinois Spina Bifida Association. These are two phenomenal organizations that are dedicated to the betterment of people living with disabilities. The Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association’s motto is, “No one left on the sidelines.” That’s a powerful motto. I was blown away by the comments and people telling me how inspired they were when they saw me on the roller doing a Peloton class. For me, that’s second nature and some of the comments from people saying how inspired they were and they would remind themselves of seeing that anytime they felt lazy and didn’t feel getting on the bike. It was moving.

When you said how much you motto, clearly you seem to have built your life around it.

It’s certainly something that was near and dear to my heart far longer before I heard them ever say it. I’m fortunate to be a part of their organization and I’m excited to be training with their team as we lead into marathon season.

Instead of trolling each other, be supportive of one another. Click To Tweet

We’ll make sure to post the links on our Facebook page to make it easier for people to find so they can help out if they’d to.

I’ll put in a plug for Hollister as well. If anybody out there has an ostomy and it’s having issues with their skin health, it’s the number one thing is to ensure that the product sticks to you and we have some great products. You can contact or look up our 1-800 number. We have a great team of specialists here who can help you get the right products to live your life to the fullest.

What is your leaderboard name?

My leaderboard name is silly. It’s Chubs in the Pug. I found this ridiculous meme on the internet and it was a hipster-looking person, and he’s wearing a picture of his pug dog and sitting in his lap. It’s his pug dog wearing a t-shirt of his face. I couldn’t let this picture go. I didn’t know what I would do with it if I would make a t-shirt of these guys in their t-shirts. It was right when we got the Peloton, so I had to pick it up. I’ve got a couple of head shakes from my beautiful wife. It has grown on her.

My first thought was, “Was that the Canadian version of BJ and the Bear?”

It’s my FM radio name.

I was thinking of that show, Jake and the Fatman. The dog and that guy. I don’t remember what the guy’s name was because nobody cares. The dog’s name was Jake.

Do you have any advice for people entering the world of the Peloton?

The number one piece of advice is to take it easy. If you’re new to cycling or you’re new to Peloton, take the introductory classes. Don’t dive in on a 45-minute hit ride your first day on the bike. Get to know the bike and how to set up your positioning properly. Make sure that you’re doing that so that you’re avoiding joint pain or stress on your muscles. Be sure to stretch when you get off the bike. You can’t perform properly the next day if you don’t take care of the moment you are in. Be sure to have a good warm-up and a good stretch after each and every ride.

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And PelotonI want to make sure that people can find you on social media because they’re going to be curious about you.

You can certainly look up my Instagram handle. It’s @BrocknessMonsterr. I worked with a gentleman and every time he’d walked by me at the office he’d always yell, “Brocknessmonster.” I tried to pick up that name on Instagram and somebody already had it so I tweaked it a little bit. You’ll see a lot about wheelchair racing, cycling and a lot about food. I trained to be a chef prior to switching careers and getting into healthcare. You’ll see a little bit about cars. I’m not one to fix up cars, but I am one to paint cars.

To paint cars?

You can’t buy your youth back but you can buy the car you drove when you were younger. A couple of years back, I bought a 1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse because that’s what I had back in culinary school. When the car showed up, I bought it sight unseen from Florida. The car was in good shape but the paint was horrific. As I started looking into what it would cost to paint the vehicle, it was going to cost me more to get the vehicle painted than I paid for the car. I started looking at my options and there’s this incredible company based out of Florida called They sell kits that allow you to paint your home vehicle at home with a peelable automotive paint.

You blew my mind. It sounds like a car wrap.

It is a wrap, but it’s a spray car wrap. You take the car off in your home garage and spray wrap your vehicle. It takes about two and a half hours to take the car and takes about two hours to paint the car. In less than a full day at the office, you have a different colored vehicle.

Why is that not everywhere?

You’d be shocked to see how many people do this. For those of you out there, check them out.

I’ll be googling that.

I’m going to put flames on my CRV.

When you are made fun of you can peel them off.

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton


That’s exactly what I would do too. I would feel great shame nonstop. Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day to join us, Brock. We appreciate it.

It’s been an absolute pleasure. I appreciate the opportunity to speak both to you and to the Peloton community.

They love you and everybody is going to enjoy learning your background because your amazing pictures and videos are so overwhelming to see something being used. Nobody’s seen these racing wheelchairs on a trainer before, so you’re blowing people’s minds. Everybody’s going to be curious.

Growing up with this in my life, it’s so normal. For the community to reach out and say, “What is that? How does that happen? Where’d you get those?” “I have a friend who’s in a wheelchair, where can I set them up with that?” To me, that is the best part of this. People in a community working together, elevating each other, getting away from all the BS that can come along with social media. Instead of trolling each other, they’re truly being supportive of one another.

On that note, good luck on the Chicago Marathon. I have no doubt you will crush it.

Thank you so much. I appreciate this time.

Thank you.

Important Links:

About Brock Masters

TCO 139 | Spina Bifida And Peloton

Experienced Global Product Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the medical device industry. Skilled in Medical Devices, Capital Equipment, Healthcare, Building lasting Customer Relationships, and Sales Effectiveness.

Strong marketing professional with a Chef Diploma focused in Culinary Arts from Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology.

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138: The Peloton Moms Facebook Group Has Been Infiltrated and our interview with Monique Caradine

TCO 138 | Fitness As A Community


Truthfully, getting a strong start on your fitness journey can be one of the most difficult things to do. But enjoying fitness as a community transforms the experience, making it collaborative, and creating accountability between you and the other people in your little circle. Monique Caradine is the founder of OverFlow Enterprises LLC, a personal development company for women. Monique chats with Tom and Crystal O’Keefe about the advantages of making your fitness journey a community effort. Thinking about a new approach to your own personal fitness? This might just be it!

Listen to the podcast here:

The Peloton Moms Facebook Group Has Been Infiltrated and our interview with Monique Caradine

What do you got in store for people?

I know I say this every week but so much.

I want to ask you, what do you have in store? Let’s pull back the curtain. It’s a little bit of BS because I already know. You gather everything and then I stack it in what I think is the most important order.

The guy who doesn’t ride or exercise in any way is the one stacking the order but it works.

I think me not being invested makes me a better judge of what’s an important story. There are three or four things that on a regular week would be like, “That’s easily the top story or the headline of the episode.” This week I went, “Struggle is a strong word,” but I was like, “That could work too.” There was some back and forth in my head. There’s a lot that goes on in there. It’s not just carnival music. Give them a sneak peek of what’s in store.

We’re going to talk about a new monitor, where is it going? What is it for? We’re going to talk about some major, I feel, potential drama happening on the Mom page. Then there are some updates with Peloton. We’ve got competitor news out the wazoo because it was CES. That’s how that rolls. New instructor rumor and an update. Then some other little things that came up as part of conversation and instructor news.

Before we get to all that, shameless plugs, don’t forget we’re available Apple podcast. You can go there, rate review, subscribe. You can also find us on Facebook, While you’re there, like the page, join the group and you can leave a review there or on iTunes, either place. We have a review. It is from KristinTTU. She says, “I love this show. I started listening after homecoming. Now, I look forward to my Friday drive to and from work because it’s Clip Out day. Keep up the great work, Tom and Crystal.

Thank you for this very nice review.

Thank you for listening while you commute. Also don’t forget we have a newsletter. We talk about a lot of things every week. There are lots of links and articles. You can get that directly in your inbox weekly if you sign up for our newsletter at While you’re there, if you’re so inclined, there’s even a donate button. We aren’t going to stop you. That’s all of the things we have to push. Let’s dig in.

There is a new monitor in the works?

Yes. According to, there’s an article that talks about a new monitor that was filed with the FCC. The big question is what is the monitor for?

It’s for monitoring.

What device, Tom? There are a couple of major lines of thoughts because I pay attention to everybody. All the rumors are that there’s a huge contingent that feels potentially this could be for a new smaller treadmill that they’ve discussed. It could also be for a new rower, maybe both depending on how big or small the new treadmill is. The other side of the coin seems to think no, this is a new monitor for the treadmill. It’s version three because apparently there’s already a version two out there. A little bit of history, if you have a bike, those bike monitors have the model number starting with RB. Then if you have a tread monitor, it starts with the letters TC. The listing of this new monitor started with TTR01, which I believe stands for Tiny Tread and Rower. As my little joke, I’ve been amusing myself since this article came out. We don’t know what it will mean, but that’s the big mystery.

Clearly, it means something. Watch this space. Give credit where credit is due. Oftentimes, we’re saying, “We read this on or we saw this at CNN’s reporting or whatever.” This one’s all you. You have discovered that the Peloton Mom’s Group on Facebook has been infiltrated, compromised, if you will, by I don’t want to say spy, I’ll go with douchebag.

To be fair, I don’t know if this person’s trying to be a douchebag. I think they’re trying to be funny.

It’s a thin line sometimes. I walk it gingerly. Not everybody’s good at it as I am.

Here’s the deal. I scroll through a lot of pages pretty quickly. I happened to see a story that stood out to me on the Mom page, and I’m not trying to call any mom out, it just stood out to me. As I was scrolling through Instagram, that same story caught my eye. I thought, “This person must have posted in both places.” Then I saw that what they had done was scratched out the name of the group and left Mom Group at the end, then they took out identifying marks so there were no names listed. Then they proceeded to make fun of the post. I was like, “What is this?” Because the name of the account which is called The Mommy Group Says has nothing but these posts.

It’s all posts basically making fun of privileged women in mom groups, complaining about things that seem petty. Complaining about first world problems.

What bothers me about this is people think that they are protected. I know that they’re not. First of all, I realized that if you are on Facebook or you’re on the internet, you’re out there. I know that. These people, not everybody knows that when they’re in a group and it’s called a private group, they think that their thoughts are at least somewhat protected. It has not occurred to most of them that they would not only be screenshotted but then made fun of.

It also makes me wonder, this person posted a story about children not being happy with a Christmas present. It’s a present that most people would feel like your kid should have been happy with. People were chiming in with variations of their kids maybe being ungrateful about things. I’m wondering if this Instagram page is seeding these stories, if maybe the initial story is BS just to prime the pump in order to get other people to chime in with their own real life stories.

I don’t know because they don’t screenshot the comments. There’s a little bit of it, but it’s like what you can see in the screenshot. They’re screenshotting the initial.

I thought they were doing both. I thought they were priming the pump and then being like, “Look at what we’ve got all these people to say.” Either way, it’s a little seedy.

If you are the owner of the account, The Mommy Group Says, and you are annoyed by this, keep in mind, we are not accusing. We’re telling you what works. We’re telling you how it looks and this is how it looks. For those of you in the Mommy Group, watch what you say or in any groups. This one is targeting mom groups.

There could be other things out there doing something similar.

The point is nothing is private on the internet. You should never assume it is. If you are posting in a group, anybody can take a screenshot and do whatever they want with it. Be careful out there.

We had an outage outrage. You can’t spell outrage without outage.

There was a post that got posted on the OPP, over 700 comments before it got deleted. It did get deleted. I don’t even know what the original comment was. Apparently, it hacked a lot of people off because apparently, and I didn’t see it, I’m just telling you from the other things that I read that it sounded very entitled because apparently Peloton is not allowed to go down. Especially on a Saturday morning when this person is trying to work out.

It is bad timing, but it’s not like they selected that time. Things happen. Considering how many people get on their system every day, the fact that how rarely this occurs is pretty impressive.

This one took the whole system down. There have been times where people have been not able to access things. It doesn’t affect everybody at once. For whatever reason, this one affected everything and everyone. It was all platforms including customer service, sales. They were without any kind of movement. It was actually within The Clip Out group, somebody from the Sales Department posted and they said it was a rough couple of hours, but they came in to that. They started their day with that. They survived and it wasn’t that bad. From their vantage point in sales, they were very imaginative and got the job done. We appreciate all of the folks at Peloton who worked very hard to make it work, who make it work every day by the way. Thank you for all that you do despite the people crabbing at you.

The Peloton wife is back in the Peloton news.

I have a sub to this. I saw Peloton lady, Monica Ruiz, got a free Peloton. It was given to her by Peloton.

I just hope to Christ, she asked for it.

I don’t know that Peloton gave it to her for free. I am telling you that because a person who claimed to be a Peloton employee said that is what happened. I didn’t go fact checking, just to be clear. Regardless, she did get one. Then the other thing I saw is she is now a Wilhelmina model as of today.

What’s a Wilhelmina?

That’s a huge modeling agency. It’s pretty much top-notch.

That’s good that she was able to turn this into a move forward at her career. I’m sure there was a period of time when she wasn’t sure.

Although, I am tired talking about it.

While we’re talking about the ad, there was some interesting stuff that you found at

I have to say that I believe it was Helen Watson sent me this article, so can’t take credit for it. She found it, but it is at YouGov. She thought it was interesting. She thought that other people might be aware. This gives some statistics, it tells about where Peloton was through this whole debacle from an advertising standpoint. It said that Peloton actually raced its way to the top of the advertising hill in December, that it had gained one of the most significant increases in ad awareness, which is a YouGov metric that tracks whether somebody has seen or heard an advertisement by a company in the last two weeks. It goes across this little timeframe. It starts at October 27th and it looks like the first week of November, Peloton launched the ad. Then the percent of awareness is right around 18% on this graph. It stays there until about December 6th or 7th. It starts to take up the very end of November.

It’s trending up towards about 20 and then it hits 20, then that’s when the backlash starts.

It says the ad goes viral on December 8th, and that’s where there’s a huge thing. Between December 8th and December 22nd, it is now at 32%.

Perhaps, it wasn’t as much of a debacle as we were thinking. I don’t think that they did this purposefully. You can’t plan something like this. I hate it when people are like, “Make us something that goes viral. I didn’t think about that make a viral thing.” Maybe this paid off in ways that in the moment when people are coming at them from all directions complaining, maybe it didn’t feel like. At the end of the day, it was a net positive for them. They clearly aren’t done with commercials because it sounds like there’s already another new commercial in the works.

I don’t know what the end result is going to look like, but I know that it stars Tune Day. I’m excited about that because she’s brand new and she’s already starting in a commercial. That’s so cool.

Good for her. There were some companies that hope to be competitors to Peloton that had some news. Echelon, who we make fun of to no end. I have to say they were bringing the heat.

I will admit that this is a surprising development. Echelon has announced that they are partnering with Samsung to expand their offerings. The reason I’m not sure about that is because Samsung is a big deal. I very much respect the Samsung.

We have multiple Samsung products in this household.

Experiencing disaster has a way of bringing you closer not only to your family, but to your community as well. Click To Tweet

Almost everything we have is Samsung. That’s a lot of things. They’re saying that this partnership, this is a big one. There were a couple of other things from Echelon. This one, they’re saying echelon is going to have classes that are going to be available on more than twenty million TVs. It’s going to come through a launch on Samsung Health on TV. People are going to have access to free and exclusive content from partners in general but including Echelon.

I guess Samsung is going to have their own health app and Echelon will be importing to that.

Samsung already has that.

There’ll be an Echelon app on your Samsung television, which is probably for the best for Echelon. We have a Samsung television and I don’t go dig in through to look if there are new apps, but if it’s a Samsung app, Samsung is more apt, no pun intended, to push it in front of you to try and get you to notice it. That’s good for them. They had some new products that they revealed.

This is the other part that I think you were referring to that they were bringing the heat. They now have a rower. There was another product they did. It’s a tread treadmill. Now they have the four products because they had the mirror already. They had the bike, they had a mirror that they were doing complete knock off as well. Now, they have a bike and a rower that they introduced at Consumer Electronics Show.

The treadmill was a little weird-looking.

That’s a different one. That’s a different topic.

I get them all confused.

I know, there are so many. There was a lot that came out because it’s the next topic. It was all covered at CES and there were multiple things that happened. I don’t remember seeing a picture of the actual Echelon treadmill. I did see a picture of the Echelon rower. It’s another rower.

There are only so many things you can do to the design of a rower. To that point, there’s another treadmill entering.

You might remember that Lisa Niren is a past Peloton instructor. She also came on the show and we interviewed her. She was working for a company called Studio. She was doing what is very similar to active and such where they were doing runs on an app, like outdoor runs. They started using it on treadmills as well. That was around the time that Peloton had announced their treadmill, but they hadn’t come to market with it yet or anything like that. It was just out there. I’m giving you a timeframe because at this point, Studio has announced that they have a treadmill that they are putting out in the market. They are partnering with HUMEAI. It’s a company that claims that they have more wearables than anybody else in the world. They’ve sold more and they seem to do third-party after-marketing stuff. You don’t see their name on it, so you would know.

Studio has partnered with this company and they will have this tread. The interesting thing about the treadmill that they are coming out with is that it also has a 43-inch glass that is put on the wall right in front of it. That looks very similar to what you would think of when you think of the mirror concept. It’s for three things. One, with the treadmill, it allows you to see the classes you’re taking. Two, with the treadmill, it also has a camera in it that allows it to see your movements and to be able to tell you whether or not your form is good. That’s pretty interesting. It’s not going to lie. If you don’t want to be seen, if you’re concerned about that, you can cover up the camera very easily. No big deal. The third thing it’s supposed to be used for is to do any other kind of floor workout. They specifically mentioned yoga, sculpt and something else that I can’t remember right now.

The treadmill looked like it had a significantly smaller footprint than Peloton, but it looked like it was designed where you would leave a gap between the treadmill and the wall that the TV is hanging on. Let’s talk about that. I’m not sure how I feel about this treadmill because it does sit back from the wall. It would have to because that screen is 43 inches long and it goes all the way down to the base of the treadmill. You’d need to have some movement to be able to see around that because if you’re going to do floor work and use it on the treadmill, you would need to have it in such a place that you can see it from both directions. I think that’s why you pulled the treadmill back. The other thing that I’m not too sure about at all, I need to see it in person, feel it in person, it doesn’t have any crossbars. There’s nothing that goes across the front of the treadmill. Basically, you could go off the front or the back of this treadmill is what I’m trying to say. Then it’s got these arms that look like the arms of a hospital bed or something.

It reminded me of when my grandma fell and they had to do physical therapy.

That’s exactly what it reminded me of. I’m not digging the aesthetics of that. Beyond the aesthetics, I worry about the safety. We had several people chime in. I felt that Susie Barris made the most compelling comment about that. She said that because she had brain cancer, she had all of her treatments. Her scans had been clear. The point is she still has all of these dizzy spells and balance issues. She’s saying that if you don’t have something in front of you to grab, that’s scary. Just human nature, if you start to fall, you put your hands forward. If you don’t have something in front of you, that’s really dangerous. The other thing is that the controls are on these handlebars that we already described it looked like hospital beds. You put your phone on it. According to the article that was here, it says that you control the treadmill with your phone.

It’s like Bluetooth.

It’s all new and it was just released in CES. The Studio folks are super excited about it. Lisa Niren, who used to be an instructor at Peloton, she is gushing about that. She says that it’s an amazing treadmill. It’s not unsturdy at all. If I ever get a chance to go look at it in person, I absolutely will, because I would love to do that. To be fair, it gives me pause from a lot of safety concerns. Treadmills are a dangerous thing to have in your home. Bad things happen to kids and animals.

You need to be cognizant of that.

I don’t know what’s going to happen.

It’s fascinating to watch so many people enter this space with similar business models attached to it.

I saw an article also, I believe John Mills posted it. Basically, the headline was CES can be wrapped up that it was just a lot of Peloton wannabes. I think John Mills brought up a good point that these companies are all claiming to be able to come in the market at a fraction of the price of Peloton. Peloton has been saying that they want to be able to reach people of every price point. If that’s true and if that’s something they still plan to do, it’s like game on. What are you going to do about it?

Did either of these companies said what the price point’s going to be?

Echelon, they’ve had their prices out there for a while for the bike and that Mirror thing. I don’t feel like their prices are that competitive for Echelon because they have three different styles of bike. The one that actually compares to a Peloton that they totally lie about in all of their advertising and say that all of them compare, it’s pretty much the same price as a Peloton. That’s what I know about Echelon. I have not checked out the Mirror compared with the Reflect that they call it. Then these two new ones, I haven’t seen pricing. The studio with their treadmill and their Mirror, that’s a combo of those two things. There has not been any pricing released at all. They just debuted it at CES. Nothing is out there yet.

You would think if they’re not significantly cheaper, I would think at this point, Peloton now has name brand awareness that is going to give people comfort. All these companies want to be Pepsi to Peloton to Coke. Right now they’re more like RC Cola.

I have to agree and maybe that’s okay. Maybe it’s just Pepsi and Cola and RC Cola. There’s room for all.

There was a time when Pepsi was more like RC Cola in terms of market share and perception. You’ve got to start somewhere. Maybe one of these will be great and kick her ass and it will be a game changer. At the moment, I think people are a little skeptical. The Peloton prophet had a prediction about Germany a little while back.

We had talked about Eric Yeager was going to be one of the new German instructors. We had our first German instructor and that was Irene Scholtz and nothing was said about Eric Yeager. Here we are and there was a post he had on Instagram that it was clearly taken from the Peloton HQ rooftop. We know because we’ve got issues, we watch way too much Instagram.

Way too much about Peloton. Let’s not forget that.

As soon as that was posted before you knew it, it was taken down. The damage was done.

Too late, that ship has sailed.

Everyone saw it. I don’t even know where this came from, but supposedly his first class is going to be on January 14th. It’s not on the schedule. I’m not sure why they think that.

It’s looking more and more like the Peloton prophet was right. Don’t question the prophet. How’s your total stuff been going?

It’s great, except for the fact that I couldn’t work out much.

It’s because I got you sick. I love you so much. My love makes you sick. You made that very clear.

Anyway, I was looking at my numbers because I was able to finally do a workout. I have been doing tonal for nine weeks now. Then I’m in the middle of my second program and I have increased my strength by 55%. That’s insane.

That’s a lot. Good job.

Thank you. I’m very proud of it and I’m very excited about it too.

Do you know what your next thing is? How far are you into your current plan that you’re doing?

There are usually four-week programs and the one I’m in right now, which is called Lean In with Liz Letchford. I am two weeks in. I just finished two weeks, so I have two weeks to go and then I’m switching. I don’t know what I’m switching to. I want to do some program that’s total body. I feel like the reason that I had such a huge increase with my PRs and stuff is because I was doing so much legwork. The Lean In has been focused more on upper body and core, which I love. It’s great. For me, I think I want to have the whole body. The other thing I might do is do something more specific but then intersperse it because they have lots of cool things you can try. They have a selection of classes that you can do that are more fast-paced, designed to get your heart rate up. Then they also have one-offs that you can do that part of a program that you could throw in a lower body or throw in a core workout or they also have yogas. There are lots of options.

You can do Tonal now and take the challenge to crush your 2020 goals. If you buy one before January 20th and complete 12 workouts in 30 days, they give you $250 back. That’s a great deal. I think that’s such a great plan to like, “If you use this like you should, we’ll reward you.” Sweating out with workouts from strength training to cardio to yoga and you can learn more about their Commit to Fit Challenge at I thought this was cool. I know that when you complete certain activities on Peloton, they give you badges. Up to now, they have been digital badges but some of the stores have actual badges now.

Apparently, you can get a little century badge when you go to the store.

You have to pull out your phone and show them that you did a hundred or how do they do that?

Word of mouth says that you tell them and it’s based on the honor system as of now. I will say that the couple of times I’ve been in the store, they pulled up my profile and they were randomly, not in a creepy way, but like, “You do this or you like that or that kind of thing.” They very quickly can look it up. They know your leaderboard name, so it’s not a big deal.

Is that in all stores or select stores?

I think it’s in all stores in the Continental US but I don’t actually know because I heard this sporadically. They didn’t make an announcement about it. This was coming in from different stores. I don’t know if they’re rolling it out. I don’t know if this is everywhere. I don’t know any details about it.

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You’ve got to make a special trip to the store.

Also if there’s anything happening like with the UK, Germany, Canada, I haven’t heard anything from those areas, so I don’t know.

I think that’s pretty nifty.

It’s pretty nice looking too. It’s about the size of your digital badge. It’s what it looks like from a visual standpoint. It looks like a pin. It’s a metal and it’s engraved. It’s very nice-looking.

We watched a movie called Brittany Runs a Marathon.

I posted about it on Instagram and Facebook. I feel like there are a lot of you out there who probably don’t follow social media that closely, who might be interested in it. This movie is so great, especially if there’s something fitness-wise that you’ve struggled with in your past or that you want to do, but you’re not sure you have the courage to do it or maybe you’re not sure you have the time to commit to it. This movie for me brought all feels. She starts out overweight and she goes to her doctor and she has to deal with all the mental aspects of like, “I want to make a change but I’m not sure how to do it.” I’m not going to go blow by blow on what happened. It was some very powerful points that spoke to me like the very first time she decides to go for a run. How her hand was on the door and then she pulled it off and then she put it back on and then she put it off. Whenever she started running she was like, “Just to the end of the block,” and then the block kept getting longer.

They did shot in vertigo where the camera zooms in as it’s pulling back. Everything stretches. For our younger audience, it’s a shot. They stole that from Poltergeist.

I felt it. I vibed with this character so much. It’s a true story. There’s a whole thing that she’s trying to do for the New York City marathon. It’s very inspirational.

It was shot at the 2017 New York marathon. You see actual footage of that. We should all say that it’s a funny movie too. It stars Jillian Bell. You would probably recognize her but not necessarily know her name. She had some pretty featured roles on Curb Your Enthusiasm. I think she was in 22 Jump Street. She’s been in stuff like that and she’s really funny. This was her first starring role I think. It was a funny movie. I enjoyed it too.

She also said that she actually had to gain 40 pounds for the movie. Her weight loss journey that you see was real. As a person who’s struggled with weight loss in my life, I appreciate it. It was very cool.

If you’re looking forward, if you have Amazon Prime, it was an Amazon movie, so it’s available for free with your Prime video package. There you go. On the heels of that, there was an interesting article about running late in life. Every once and a while, I do a little work.

You’ve been doing a lot of work lately because this is the third article in a row you come up with. It talks about how this article is called Too old? Too slow? No! Debut marathoners may add years to life. It says that first-time marathoners, even if they take on the challenge later in life, they are able to lower their blood pressure and have healthier arteries. They were talking about on average, the study that they looked at, there were 138 first-time marathon runners. On average, those new runners were 37 years old and 49% were male and they had not been running for more than two hours per week before the study began.

It’s interesting that the split is almost perfectly 50/50 because 49% is that’s exactly the gender split. 51% of the population is female.

It said also for fellow people who don’t have race paces, we like to finish what we started like myself. The average marathon time at the end of the study was 5.4 hours for women and 4.5 hours for men. They weren’t breaking any records. After you’ve done this event and before you’ve done this event, what kind of arterial stiffening or hardening did these people have? That was the whole point of it. They said that on average, there was a decrease equivalent to a four-year reduction in their arterial age and a drop in systolic, which is when the heart muscles contract and diastolic, which is when the muscles relax. Blood pressure of four and three respectively. They said it’s possible to reverse the consequences of aging on our blood vessels with real-world exercise in six months. These people were not doing extreme levels of exercise. They were not losing extreme amounts of weight. They were just training. For those of us who were trying to be better as we hit our 40s, that’s good to know.

Trying to be an Olympic athlete, just trying to get a little movement.

I thought it was great news. Good find, Tom.

Our challenge is still going on. People seem to be responding. We’re seeing lots of people entering, which is great.

The prize in case you’ve forgotten, is a twelve-week subscription to Stronger U. It’s $449.

That’s quantifiably awesome. You can sign up for that by going to What are the rules again?

The rules are you fill out the entry form, which is right there on the website. Then you say yes to getting our newsletter. Then you break up January into four weeks, however you want to for seven-day periods. For each of those seven-day periods, you work out three times, twenty minutes each. No meditation.

She figured that out because that’s the kind of thing I do. She’s like, “What would Tom do?” It fits in very handily with stuff you’re already doing. You don’t have to do anything you haven’t done before or not planning to do. You need to do it three times a week.

The only other thing you need to know is it needs to be on your Peloton records. You can do it on digital. That’s fine. We need to be able to go into your Peloton profile and see what you did. If you win, that’s what we’re going to be doing. If you don’t meet the criteria, you no longer win. We will move on to the next person.

We should probably also say we find people who are stronger who were kind enough to throw in this prize. We had so many people asking us about the discount that we did. They have revived that.

They gave us another discount. It’s going to be 10% off of any of their packages. All you’ve got to do is enter The Clip Out code, which is called Clip Out 20.

It’s very simple. You go to their website, and enter, Clip Out 20. You save 10%. That’s good through the month of January. Yup. There is a new partnership in the works.

It’s all about clothes, Tom. I know you’re not going to be interested in it, but it’s a partnership with Peloton. They partnered with Athleta and Hill City. Athleta might sound familiar to you because it’s a Gap brand. For a lot of people, this is a very big deal because people buy Athleta a whole bunch. It’s a huge seller and the community outside of Peloton. The other cool thing is there were real people from our community that were included in this. It wasn’t supposed to be released until the 15th. We don’t know what happened, but it got leaked. I want to give a shout out to you, Steve Chan, Christina Riviera, Sienna Ferris, Mike Miller and Holly Hayes, who were all fine models for this awesome campaign beginning on 0115 when the new collection drops. Congrats to all of you

Alex Toussaint has a partnership of his own.

It’s super exciting. He’s not going anywhere for anyone who still thinks that. He joined as an athletic training advisor. This is amazing, good news for him. Just like some of our other instructors are, they’re doing Adidas or they’re doing Nike. We have lots of ambassadors for that. That’s very similar to what we’ve got going on here. He gets to work with people like LeBron James. I don’t know if he’s actually working with them but he’s on the same level because they are also represented by people like LeBron James. This is huge for Alex and we are so proud of him.

I always know when an athlete is a big name, if I haven’t heard of them. Typically, if they’re not a Harlem Globetrotter, you’ve got nothing. I don’t know who they are. Finally, Cody and Emma are doing a dual ride.

One of the things that was mentioned in John Foley’s email that came out at the beginning of this year, 2020, he said, “We’re going to have dual rides,” and this is our first dual ride. It’s going to be Cody and Emma. It’s going to be at 8:30 PM Eastern. It’s going to be a groove ride. If you like Cody and Emma, you might remember they were dancers together in a former life. They’re being brought together again for the first dual ride of 2020.

Joining us is Monique Caradine. Monique, how is it going? 

Tom, how are you?

I’m good. Crystal is here. It will be odd if she wasn’t. 

It’ll be a little weird.

This is exciting. I know we were talking a little bit before we officially started, but I am excited about this because we met when we were at She Podcasts LIVE. It’s cool to find a fellow Pelotoner out in the wild and that you were kind enough to agree to come on our show.

I remember when I met you, I saw your t-shirt. It was the first day of the conference. How you’re all wide-eyed and you’re taking it all in, I see you and I notice your Peloton t-shirt. I’m like, “Do you have a Peloton?” She’s like, “Yes, I have a Peloton. Not only do I have a Peloton, but I have a podcast about Peloton.” I’m like, “It was meant to be.”

We were off to the races instantly. Speaking of Peloton, how did you originally find it?

I would always see the commercials on TV and having experienced spinning in previous years and fell in love with spinning classes. When I started to see the commercials, I’m like, “That will be cool.” I started to see the commercials. It wasn’t in our budget at first. My husband surprised me with a regular spin bike from Sam’s Club or somewhere. There was nothing wrong with that but it wasn’t the same.

As a husband, I know exactly you’re like, “There’s nothing technically wrong with these gift, but it’s wrong.”

It’s not what you asked for. 

No, but I wanted. Long story short, this is the sad part of the story. We live in Puerto Rico, hurricane Maria hit the Island in 2017. I had my little spin bike and it was in our outdoor living space. When the hurricane came, we had stored all our furniture and stuff in this area that we thought would be secure and safe from the hurricane. That hurricane was incredibly vicious that it ripped away our storage unit, ripped away our storm shutters and my bike was in that area. It threw everything all around our yard. The bike didn’t make it out of that storm. Anyway, we managed to recover from that. Thank, God. It was about in August 2018, my husband surprised me with a real Peloton.

He was forever redeemed.

He got the husband of the year award for that one.

It’s nice that in some small way, something positive came out of the hurricane. 

I can’t even imagine what you guys went through. Were you still on the island when it hit? How did that work for you?

That’s a great question because I was in Chicago right before the hurricane hit and I was on my way back home. I didn’t even know the hurricane was coming. I was at the airport leaving Chicago, my son called, “Mom, there’s a hurricane coming.” I’m like, “Lucky me, I get to go back to Puerto Rico just in time.” Literally, I got back home and we started to prepare for the hurricane and that’s when we started putting all the furniture up. I was here during the hurricane. It was quite an event. I’ll never forget, it’s the scariest moment of our lives, but thankfully we got through it. I’m grateful for that.

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Where do you go when a hurricane is coming, especially when you’re on an island? 

It’s weird because living on the island, we’d been here for a couple of years and we had hurricane scares and threats before, but nothing ever really came. We’d get a little tropical storm or something like that. When this hurricane came, the way our house is positioned, we’re in a valley. We’re at the base of a little mountain area. I’m like, “We should be good.” I didn’t have a concept of 180-mile an hour wind, what that do no matter where you are. I’m taking it for granted. I’m like, “We should be good. We’re safe. We’ve got the storm shutters. We’re all set.” I’m chilling. I’m having that wine, making tacos as the storm is coming. I have no idea, what’s about to happen. For us, we had made the commitment to hunker down at home. We put all the shutters down and we had our generator, we have some water stockpiles. We’re like, “We’re good.” We gassed up the cars. To answer your question, there is nowhere to go. They had shelters and stuff here for people who lived in homes that were not structurally sound so to speak. Those people went to shelters, but there’s really no place to go. You’ve got to hope and pray that your house can withstand the damage.

The rest of your house was okay?

Yeah. We did have damaged. Most of the homes in Puerto Rico are built in concrete because this is a hurricane zone. They try to account for that. We did have damage, about $150,000 worth of damaged. We lost some of our roof and we lost a lot of our outdoor space and shutters. The wind came in and ripped everything apart. I’m grateful that we had the resources to repair the damages and the insurance helped out a little bit, but not a lot. It did help out a little bit. At this point, we are all good.

That’s amazing. I’m glad to hear that. I know it’s already been a couple of years since then obviously, but it’s hard to come back from that. I’m glad to hear you are in such a good place.

Where do you go within your home when that happens? I’m assuming since it’s an island, you don’t have a basement.

Is it like when we have tornadoes in the Midwest, we go to the inner most room of the house or if you have a basement, that’s where you go but not everybody has a basement. Is that what you do there too?

Yeah. It’s exactly what we did. We started out in our master bedroom. We thought, “We got this.” All the storm shutters were down and we felt like we would all hunkered down in the master bedroom. If it got really bad, we would come into the walk-in closet of the bedroom. It was me and my husband and my son and our dog. The crazy thing about it was this storm was bad and it started to intensify. The balcony doors to our master bedroom started to buckle and give way as the wind started to increase. At that point, we decided it’s not safe to stay in the room because we ironically had some construction done on our balcony. The doors wouldn’t lock down like they typically would. As the wind would blow, the doors would literally slam open. It was weird and scary. We decided early on because, Tom, you’re going to trip out on this. My husband was trying to be the strong man. You know how you all do, right?

Not me. Whatever you’re about to say, no, I don’t do it. Remember, we met at an all-women’s podcast event. Don’t ever forget that. 

My husband is trying to be the man and he tried to hold the doors shut as the wind was blowing. I’m looking at him, bless his heart and I said, “Hon, you know we’re at the beginning of this storm and it’s only going to get worst.”

“You’re not going to be able to hold that for twelve hours.” 

“I don’t know how to break it to you. You are not stronger than a hurricane.”

He gave up after about five minutes of fighting with the storm. We did have to evacuate the master room and we went to a different room. It was a room within the interior of the house. That room did begin to take on water eventually because this was an unprecedented storm. It did begin to take on water. We had to evacuate that room and then we went to another room and we pray because after that, we had no place else to go.

I’m glad it stopped there. That sounds super intense.

This is probably a nice avenue for you to be able to discuss this because the other people that live in Puerto Rico, when you try to tell that story, you’re like, “Whatever, you aren’t special.”

There are so many people that have stories that are so much worse. Some people say, “Our entire roof blew off. All the windows and doors were broken out of our homes.” My story that I share with you all is nothing compared to what so many people did. The thing that I’m grateful for from that hurricane, it was traumatic. It was devastating. It was all those things, but we were so lucky to have been involved. I literally took a break from work because you have to understand that hurricane took away our cell phone service, our internet and our power depending on where you lived on the island, anywhere from 5 to 9 months. I couldn’t work because my business is online-based. I couldn’t work for those entire nine months, couldn’t make a phone call. We depended completely on our generator for power. We got to know each other well as a family during that time. We played some board games. I’m grateful because not only did we become closer as a family, but I was able to throw myself into the relief efforts of my community. Along with some friends of mine and members of my church, we threw ourselves into providing food for families in our community, necessities. I’ve never talked about this. Thank you so much for letting me discuss it a few years later.

This is cool.

We would go house-to-house, door-to-door, block-to-block, neighborhood-to-neighborhood, checking on people, seeing what they needed, making sure their kids had food, making sure they had things like Band-Aids and alcohol and basic stuff because the stores had nothing. People didn’t have access to cash because you couldn’t use an ATM machine. People were a little bit desperate. For fourteen months, I was working on almost a daily basis, strictly doing relief for my community here in Puerto Rico. That was the most gratifying and difficult year of my entire life but I wouldn’t trade that for the world.

The reason I said, “This is cool,” is because you have this amazing outlook on that. Many people and myself included, I would be sad, upset and frustrated and that turns you into a victim and you turn something very tragic into this positive experience. That is not something everyone can do and you should be very proud of that. That’s amazing. 

Thank you so much for saying that.

How long was the hurricane? 

I remember we went to bed at about 10:30 and it was windy. I’m from Chicago, so I know about wind. This is like a Chicago wind thing. That was around 10:30. I remember my mom called because she was probably watching the news and we had already lost power at that point. We still had cell phone service, but my mom called at 1:30 AM. She said, “I’m checking on you, guys. Is everything okay?” I’m like, “Mom, we’re good. We’re fine. We’re sleeping. I’ll call you as soon as we can.” As she’s saying, “Goodbye, I love you,” or whatever she was saying, I heard the static and the phone cut-off before we officially end the conversation. That was at 1:30 AM, it started to get progressively worse and it went all the way until about 12:30. It was about eleven hours that storm went. It went all through the night. That was the longest night of our lives.

I bet your mom was freaking out. 

If you don’t have power, you don’t have cell service, how do you let your mother know that you’re okay?

You all have no idea. My husband and my son had a charter boat business. They decided to open up a charter boat business. We live in Puerto Rico, we’re right on the ocean. They started the business a couple of years ago. One of the things that when you have a boat of any kind, it’s always wise to have satellite phones. When our crew is out on the water, they don’t have cell phone service, if there’s an emergency, they can always pick up one of the satellite phones to make a call. He had the presence of mind to say, “We knew the hurricane was coming. I’m going to make sure I go get the satellite phones off the boat.”

That’s way more impressive than holding down a shutter. 

He’s a pretty smart dude. I had to give him kudos for that one. You all are going to trip out on this. We have satellite phones and with the satellite phones you can’t call from your house because the phone has to be able to reach the satellite. You have to go outside to make a phone call.

It’s like DIRECTV. It needs to see the sky.

We couldn’t call anybody until the storm began to settle down. It was 12 or 13 hours after the storm. I was finally able to get a call out to the family. They were having anxiety attacks, panic. Everybody was like, “Oh my God,” because they had no idea. All they could see was what was on the news. We were finally able to get a call out to the family and we said, “Everybody is okay. We’re fine. We can’t talk long. We don’t know when we’ll be able to call you in the next time, but we’re good.” The cool thing about that satellite phone is that we were literally able to take that phone to several of our neighbors, people in our community who had no way of contacting their family. They were able to use the satellite phone to let somebody in their family know, “We’re okay. Everybody’s safe. We’re good. You don’t have to worry.” You can’t imagine when people can get pulled to a phone to call somebody, anybody back in the States.

You guys were like angels. You’re walking around with this ability to communicate and nobody else has the ability.

As soon as you started the story, I’m like, “This ends with everyone using the satellite phone. She probably could have paid for the damage to her housing and it’s $5.” 

People were offering to pay us. They were like, “We’ll pay you, just let us use your phone.” It’s like, “Chill. No problem. We were all in the same boat, so absolutely. Don’t be trying to have long conversation though.”

Save some juice for the next guy. 

You guys are amazing. What an ordeal and you finding all these ways to help other people. You could have been in the movies where it’s like a post-apocalyptic scene and they’re all crammed in their house and they won’t open the door for anybody. You guys are out like, “Anybody need some Band-Aids? Call your mom.” I love that.

When you finally got power back, what was the first thing that you did? 

When I finally got power back, I did several things simultaneously. I used my dishwasher and my washer and my dryer probably all at the same time.

My first thought was like, “I’m taking a hot shower,” but the water won’t be hot because you get power back, your hot water heater hasn’t heated it up yet. You still got to wait.

It was quite an ordeal. We had a generator, it was challenging to keep that thing filled up with gas on a weekly basis, but we managed to do it. There were a couple of days where we had no power, we had no generator. I had to cook dinner out on the barbecue grill. There were days I didn’t have my hot coffee because there was no way to make hot coffee. You discover what you’re made of.

You guys are resourceful. If there’s ever something happening to the world, I’m going to come to Puerto Rico and find you. 

Come to my house and you’ll be good to go.

I’ll be like, “Monique will know what to do.” 

You’re going to need your satellite phone number.

We had meals ready to eat and everything. We were good to go on.

Back to Peloton. Tom takes us down tangents. I never know where we’re going to go, but that was all super fascinating. I’m glad we got to hear all of that. Actually, I want people to hear about your podcast because when we talked in person, I was fascinated by what you do. Can you tell us about your podcast and what you do with people?

My podcast is called Sisternomics. It is a podcast for women entrepreneurs, which gives them practical tips, resources and advice on how to get to their next income level. I’m also using the podcast as my own personal accountability platform because my goal is to get my business to seven figures by April of 2021. People can follow my journey toward that goal by listening to Sisternomics. In my work, I am a coach to women entrepreneurs. I help them to stop stressing about money, stop chasing after it, stop worrying about it and finally use their gifts and their genius to make more than enough of it. That’s what I do in the world.

What I also found fascinating was that you use so much psychology around money. It’s like people who eat emotionally like myself. You can talk about dieting all you want, but until you deal with the emotional eating aspect of it, you’re always going to struggle with that. I felt like what you were doing dealt with money in that aspect.

TCO 138 | Fitness As A Community

Fitness As A Community: When you get access to a fitness community, you start to make connections within that community, and you also fall in love with the instructors.


We all have a story about money and that story is usually developed when we’re children around the age of 5, 6 or 7, sometimes a little bit younger. However you saw your parents or your closest family members handling money is typically how you grow up handling it as well. I always like to say that the only thing that stands between a woman and the money that she desires is the story that she tells herself. That story comes from how you saw your parents handling money. What happened when they had conversations about money? Was money even a topic of conversation in your household? All of that drives our relationship with money and our experience with money. My job is to help you break all that down. If the story that you have right now doesn’t fit who you are today or the goals that you have, then it’s up to me to help you rewrite the story so that it matches who you are and the goals that you have.

Isn’t that fascinating, Tom?

Yeah. My parents never talked about money.

That’s something to do with your story. I’m sure Monique could break it down, but it means something.

My story is when I would see my parents dealing with money, there was always tension or it was always, “No, we can’t afford that. No, you can’t go to the sleep away camp. No, you can’t get the fancy jeans that your girlfriends are wearing.” I saw my dad working 2 and 3 jobs. It was an interesting dynamic for me. The story that I grew up with, because all of us have a story including you, Tom, even though they didn’t talk about money, we all have a story and my story was, “The only way you’re going to make money is if you work 50, 60 and 70 hours a week. Money is only going to come to you if you’re constantly away from your family. You can’t make money doing fun, creative things like a podcast or coaching or anything like that. You’ve got to work your fingers to the bone.” That was my story. Even as a money coach, even as a host of Sisternomics, even as a person who’s had a successful career in broadcasting in radio and TV, I still every day have to work on my money story because I have to make sure that those old, disempowering thoughts and beliefs, I have to make sure that they’re not affecting the person that I am and the income that I want to create.

That’s funny because those are all messages my parents sent me and then I ignored them. I didn’t do any of them. Now, I have the fun job.

You found a way to create your own story to do what you wanted to do, but not everybody can. There are many years that I felt like I had to work 80 hours a week to be able to make enough money to support the family. Before you and I were married just to be clear, for anybody reading.

Gainfully important readers, pull my own weight, which is considerable because I’m fat.

I used to do that all the time. What you do is fascinating and I hope people who read to our podcast check you out because what you are doing is great and can help a lot of people.

I love doing this work. I know that when we have enough money, first of all, when we adjust our relationship with it and realize that there’s no shortage of money out there, that there’s plenty of it and it’s enough of it to go around for all of us to be wealthy. When we start to realize that and we start to take away the stress and all of the misunderstandings around money, then we can begin to create it easily and create it in fun ways and then also create a legacy of wealth so that our children, our grandchildren and our great-grandchildren can benefit from that because that’s the way it should be. When all of us are wealthy, we have the ability and the resources to make an impact on the world. That’s what it’s all about.

I should throw in here, you would like this, I was raised by a female entrepreneur in the ’70s and ’80s.

Tell her about the award your mom got.

My mom owned a printing company. Both my parents own printing companies. They owned one together and then they got divorced and started separate printing companies, but not like in a competing way. She was involved with the community and did all sorts of stuff. I still have the plaque she got. This is what the plaque says and it cracks me up, “First Lady President” of her Rotary Club.

It kills me. I love it so much. Bless them, they were trying. 

They make that in the nicest way. 

They loved her so much.

It did no harm.

They did not but it’s funny to see it, “First Lady President.” She might actually been the first female member in the Rotary Club when they first opened it up, the women joined. Then in classic Betty O’Keeffe fashion and then taken over the whole thing.

Back to Peloton this time. It sounded like when you and I talked, Peloton was your go-to work out at this point. I would like to hear why that is for you?

It’s something about the community, Crystal, that is addictive. I cannot get enough of it. I’ve done workouts before. I told you I had a spin bike, gym memberships and whatever. This is the first time that I have been consistent because when you have the access to the community, then you start to make connections within the community. Then you start to fall in love with the instructors because they’re like your best friend in your head. I’ve got to get on Alex’s ride or I have to go and see what Cody is talking about. It’s something about it. They’ve got this formula down to a science and I’m hooked.

I clearly am too, so I get it. Tom still has not taken a ride. 

Tom, I’ve got a question for you. What is it going to take to get you on that bike?

I’m good.

In our Facebook group, they had that joke going around that they were going to make a bike out of chicken tenders and that maybe he would ride that. 

I would just eat it.

He would eat it, he wouldn’t ride it.

You love the community. Have you gone to the studio in New York? 

Yes. I was there in summer. I was able to ride with Christine and I absolutely love her. She was nice. The thing I love about her is that she is comfortable in her skin. I don’t know for me, as a woman that’s quickly approaching the age of 50, even though I know I don’t look a day over 35.

You really don’t, you say that jokingly. You look a lot younger than what you say you are. 

I wouldn’t have guessed that you’re as old as me. 

Thank you, guys, for saying that well. I met her and I’m getting to a point where I’d no longer judge myself in terms of, “I’m too this or this part of my body is imperfect or whatever.” For women, that’s an ongoing struggle. I’m now probably in the past year getting to a space where I’m not going to judge myself no more. I have to fall in love with me the way I am right now. I’ll still get on my bike and I’ll work out every day. For now, I’m going to accept myself the way I am. I love Christine because she does the exact same thing. She personifies this whole idea of women being comfortable in their bodies and I love her for that. I rode with her in summer. It was a blast. I didn’t get to ride with Alex, but next time I’m going to go and make sure I’ll ride with him. My new favorite is Matt Wilpers.

Is that for Power Zone rides or in general?

I finished taking Discover Your Power Zones. He was low on my radar. I wasn’t feeling his vibe or anything, but I knew that after having my bike for a year, I want to be more powerful on the bike. I want to be higher up on the leaderboard. I said, “Let me go ahead and mess with Matt and take his class and see what he’s talking about.” Matt for me is like Bay. He is my favorite coach of all times. He’s a rock star in my eyes. I wish I would’ve taken Power Zones when I first got the bike.

That’s interesting because I have this theory. You have 3 or 4 instructors you connect with but typically, they fall in quadrants. If you’re an Alex girl, it’s very rare that you’re a Christine and Matt girl. If you’re Christine, you’re definitely Matt. Alex usually is not lumped in with those threes. I am fascinated by that.

I’ve tried to try a little bit of everything. You’re right because I’m in the BGM community and all of them are in love with Alex. They love Robin. There’s very few in the community that love Matt. The thing I love about Matt is that he makes the bike makes sense. It’s not ride into your heart falls out. You don’t kill yourself with him. Everything he does has a strategy to it. It has meaning behind it. That’s the thing I look for in a coach, someone that can literally guide me to my next level and that’s exactly what he does. That’s why I love him so much. He’s amazing.

He does do that. That is absolutely true. That’s wonderful. I love that you try all the different instructors because we all should. You don’t know who you’re going to mesh with until you take a few of their classes. That’s great that you do that.

The bike has so much to offer. How can you not? That bike is everything. It’s just the floor workouts, the yoga, the meditation, I want to do all of it. Literally, when I finish my workout and I worked out with Matt, I said to myself, “I wish I could spend the whole day sometimes exploring some of these classes because they’re so amazing. I love it.”

I hear you. You have no idea how many days that I am at work. I’m like, “I want to go home and work out.”

I know how you feel.

She gets home and I’m like, “Let’s watch TV.”

My husband is to the point where he’s like, “You’re going to work out right now?” He knows. In my household, my husband and my son, they’re like, “You’re working out tonight, right?” “Yes.” Everything else is going to have to wait. I’ll get back to it when I’ve finished my workout. It’s a part of my life.

Here’s the thing, things might have to wait but your workout will never be as long as the weight of post hurricane. You’re like, “I’m going to be gone for 45 minutes. You can deal with it.”

That’s an excellent point.

They will never ever bother you again. If they were, you will be like that. That is your get out of jail free card. You mentioned BGM, but a lot of people in the Peloton community, they have so many groups. They may not have heard of Black Girl Magic. Can you talk about that tribe? 

Black Girl Magic is a group of black women who are on varying levels of their health journey. I love this community because it’s so positive and everyone in there is encouraging and everybody respects where the other person is on their journey. You’ve got some people in there who are like fitness models and true athletes. You got people like me, I’m just a mom, trying to stay active few times a week. This is a funny story about my leader name. My leader name is Play Time is Over. Let me say how I came up with that name. I changed the name a few months ago before I was using my name, Monique Caradine. It was boring. One of the girls in the BGM in our little Facebook group, she’s a physician and she looks amazing and she posted a picture of herself. This woman has a six-pack to die for.

I looked at her and I said to myself, “This woman looks amazing.” She is probably around the same age as me. She explained how she got to where she is and how she works at. She was very nice to give us her whole entire workout and even some of her diet and stuff like that. I looked at her and I screenshotted her picture on my phone because I’m like, “If she can do that, I can do that.” That is what made me change my name to Play Time is Over, so I can get by myself daily that I’ve got the take it up a notch. That’s what made me take Matt’s Discover Your Power Zone. That’s what made me start getting down on that floor and doing some of that little strength workouts. I did Emma’s core workout all because I saw that picture.

We have the ability and the resources to make an impact on the world. Click To Tweet

Does she know that? Does she know that you are so inspired by her? 

I told her. I don’t know if she realizes the impact that she has had on my whole entire life, but I did tell her that she was truly an inspiration for me.

I love how that community does that for each other. That is amazing.

What I did was I started another subgroup from the Black Girl Magic group and there are ten of us in a little subgroup. We are ride or die accountability partners. We decide each month we say, “This month we’re going to focus on Power Zone training. This month we’re going to focus on endurance or strength or whatever the case might be.” We hold each other accountable every day. We create a little calendar. We say, “This is our workout for the month. How’s everybody doing? Check in when you finish your workout.” Somebody says, “I didn’t get to do my workout.” We say, “No problem, try to get at least ten minutes in.” It’s amazing the friendships and the connections that we’ve developed from that group. It’s awesome.

I am so glad that you are telling us about this group because it’s been a couple of months because we’ve obviously had been trying to have this conversation since I’ve met you. There was a BGM HRI in New York and Tune day and Jess Sims was there. The entire tribe at that HRI, they came into the class and it was Sims class that I did one morning and I was doing a run and the energy in that room was electric. It was fabulous. They looked like they were having so much fine and Jess Sims was having a great time. I love her. I don’t know if you’ve taken any of the classes with her since you’ve been using the bike and she’s a tread instructor. Have you had the chance?

Yeah, I did. I take her strength classes. I actually took one of her classes and it was killer. I took her upper body strength class. It was amazing. She’s no joke.

On Saturday, she has a class that she calls the Saturday 60 and it’s either a boot camp at 60 minutes or it’s a 60-minute run. If it’s a boot camp, she does these insane moves, the strength moves. You’ll do fifteen minutes run and then you’ll do fifteen minutes of strength and you jump back on and do a fifteen-minute run. By the end, you want to hurt her because it’s so amazing. She is tough. She’s amazing. I love her so much.

I like her a lot too.

I’m glad everybody gets to hear about that tribe because I tried to reach the admin and I sent a message. You know how you have the other messages on Facebook? It went there and I never heard from her. 

Let me know, I’m happy to put you in touch with her and let them know that you want to reach out and stuff. I can make that connection for you if you’d like.

That would be great. I’d love to hear more. You told us your leaderboard name and how you came up with it. You just changed that?

I changed that in the last couple of months. I changed it probably at the end of August to September, something like that.

Are you happy with your progress so far? 

I’m happy with my progress. I have what I call a six-pack starter kit. I’m starting to see some lines. My weight is very stable. It’s maintaining at a good weight. I also got some nice arms. I’m trying to get those tune day arms.

If you do, that’s amazing. I have tune day goal arms. They are my goal. I don’t have the arms but I would love to have them. She’s talking about no joke. She’s a beast on the bike.

I PR every time I ride with her. She is amazing. I’m actually trying to get her on my podcast, so hopefully I can make that happen.

That would be fabulous. If you do, let me know because I want to hear it. Are you going to go through a Peloton to do that or are you reaching out to her directly?

I reached out to her directly actually.

It’s not about Peloton necessarily your conversation? 

Some of it will be obviously, but a lot of the things that I’m helping women do. I want to talk to her about the business of fitness. Since it’ll be around the first of the year, we all have fitness goals. I love her energy. I think she can add a lot of value to my audience in terms of business as well as health and wellness.

There’s no doubt. I’m sure you’ve heard her backstory.

A little bit of it. Not all of it.

She’s amazing. I don’t remember what country she grew up in, but she was overweight when she was thirteen. She ended up losing all that weight and looks the way she does now. That’s inspirational for teenagers especially because many kids these days, at least our kids, they sit around, do nothing. She’s super inspirational. She’s amazing.

She’s got a good vibe and good energy, she’s awesome.

Do you have any advice for people who are starting their fitness or Peloton journey?

My best recommendation would be to do Matt Wilpers’ Discover Your Power Zones because that’s a great way to develop a good understanding of your bike. It’s a great way to understand your body on the bike. It’s a great way to develop the right technique early on so that you don’t just jump on. My first ride was a 45-minute ride with Cody, and then while it was fun and it was great, I may have developed some not so good habits because I didn’t do the right techniques and stuff. If I could offer anyone any advice, especially if you’re a newbie, go ahead and jump on with Matt Wilpers and let that be your guide and then start trying the other folks. The main thing is don’t take it so seriously. Cody always says, “Have fun and live your life.”

That’s great advice. I love it.

I was thinking it’s like yard work. Everybody wants to have the nice manicured lawn, but first and foremost, you’ve got to mow the thing. First, you mow it and then once you’ve mowed for a while, then you look around and you’re like, “Maybe we can throw on some fertilizer.”

It’s good advice, Tom. 

Until we live in the suburbs.

The next thing you know, you’re putting those little fancy lines, those diagonal lines.

You’re cutting the grass like catty corner. It looks all fancy and not unlike exercise. I hire someone to do it.

Smart man you got there, Crystal.

I agree, except for the exercise part.

Where can people find you on social media and whatnot? Normally, I say if you would like to be found, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say that you would like to be found.

I would like to be found and you can find me everywhere, @MoniqueCaradine. My podcast is called Sisternomics. You guys have been so much fun. Thank you for letting me share my story. I’ve never shared it to that degree. I’ve never shared it with such depth. I thank you guys for letting me get that out.

You’re very welcome.

I feel like we had a special experience. Thank you for sharing that with us. 

It’s my pleasure.

It was wonderful to talk to you and I hope that we are able to keep in touch. If you somehow pass by St. Louis, let us know.

I’ll definitely let you guys know. Actually, I may be in St. Louis in summer. If I make it that way, I will definitely let you know.

That would be fabulous. You take care and thank you again for doing this. 

Thank you so much.

Thank you, guys, so much.

What do you have in store for people next time?

We have another exciting interview. We are going to be talking to Brock Masters, who if by any stretch of what I saw on the official Peloton page, you guys have seen him, you just may not know his name. He has Spina Bifida. He was racing along in his fancy racing wheelchair while taking classes on Peloton all over the OPP and it’s awesome. We’ve got to talk to him.

TCO 138 | Fitness As A Community

Fitness As A Community: Don’t take it too seriously. Still make sure to have fun and live your life.


He has a badass name, Brock Masters. He sounds like he should be a character on one of those old cowboy shows. Anyway, that’s who we will be talking to you next episode week. Until then, where can people find you?

People can find me at They can also find me at Instagram, Twitter, on the bike and of course the tread at Clip Out Crystal.

You can find me on Twitter, @RogerQBert or on Facebook at Don’t forget, while you got your podcast delivery device in your hand, you should make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode. If you want to find out more about the show, you could do that at While you’re there, like the page, join the group and of course sign up for our newsletter at That’s it. Thanks for tuning in and until next time, keep peddling and running.

Important Links:

About Monique Caradine

TCO 138 | Fitness As A CommunityWhy do you think you would be a great guest on the show?
this bike has been the ONLY thing that has me excited about working out consistently! I truly believe that Peloton is the answer to world peace. Real talk!

How old are you?

Leaderboard name

Who is your favorite instructor?
Hard to name just one! Alex because he helps me PR consistently, Cody because he’s fun, Jenn because she’s cool and i love her hip hop playlists, Matt because he makes the bike make sense (I just finished his Power Zones program), Christine because she’s so confident in her skin, Tunde because she’s fresh!

What is your favorite tribe?
Black Girl Magic the Peloton Edition (aka BGM Queens) – such a supportive, positive and motivating group!

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137: New Power Zone Instructors Are On The Way Plus Our Interview with Irene Bassock

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


It’s no wonder that biking is a very good form of exercise. For those who are wary about biking outdoors, the Peloton Bike is a step-up of the good old indoor bike. For the uninitiated, the Peloton Bike is a high-end indoor bicycle equipped with a Wi-Fi–enabled, 22-inch touchscreen tablet that streams live and on-demand classes which allows the user to compete with other members. 50-year-old attorney, Irene Bassock, joins Crystal O’Keefe and Tom O’Keefe in this episode to talk about her Peloton Bike experience and why she’s loving it.

Watch the episode here:

Listen to the podcast here:

The Peloton Bike Experience With Irene Bassock

Joining us is Irene Bassock. Irene, how’s it going?

It’s going well. It’s a little surreal being interviewed.

Think of it as us hanging out, getting to know you.

If it makes you feel any better based on past one of these where we’ve done, that novelty wears off quick. By the end, you’ll be like, “Are we done? I’ve got things to do.”

Thanks for inviting me.

Thank you for taking the time to do this and humoring us with telling us all about your Peloton experience. If you’ve ever had the opportunity to read the blog, you probably know that the first question I always ask is how did you find Peloton?

That’s an easy one. I do want to say I’ve read every single episode of the show. How did I hear about Peloton? My sister, Jane, used the Peloton app when it first came out and it was free. She knew I took spinning classes and was raving about these workouts. She talked about it all the time. I was on a business trip. I had to go to Chicago in November of 2015. While I was staying at the Weston, I went down early to do a workout before the conference started. There was a Peloton sitting right there. I had arrived at the gym right when it opened.

It was early and no one was there and the Peloton was sitting there. I went, “Go check it out.” I took a ride with Nicole. It was weird. The bike sucked me in. I remember 45 minutes later looking up at myself in the mirror across from the gym. The gym was full of people at this point and I was a mess, sweaty. I cannot believe that I looked like that in public. I barely got off the bike without falling. I was like, “That’s it. I have to buy one of these.” Literally, it was on my way back home at the airport. I ordered one and it came 2 or 3 days later. It was a done deal.

You were all-in instantly. Was that a live ride that you took with Nicole?

No, I think it was on-demand, but it was interesting because I didn’t even think about live versus on-demand. In fact, when I got off the bike, the gym manager came over to ask me how I liked the ride, which was obvious. He said that the bike had arrived in their gym a few days before. I was one of the first people that used it. I would love to figure out what that ride was that I took, but I’m sure it’s been purged by now. It was great.

If you wanted to know, you could scroll all the way down on your profile.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


I didn’t even sign it. I signed in the gym. I don’t think I even had a profile. It was strange because I didn’t even tell my husband I bought it. I tucked it on another credit card that I have. I’m sure he knows about it, but he doesn’t know about it. I justified it. I canceled my gym membership. I didn’t even realize I had this before, but my company’s health plan had a program where if you sign up for gym membership, they will pay you X number of dollars every quarter. I justified that that money would be used to pay for the Peloton. My company accepted the Peloton monthly financing and they applied that health reimbursement amount to the financed amount, which I was surprised that they did.

Since you had a gym membership, were you already working out regularly? Were you an occasional gym-goer or were you like many of us where you have a gym membership and never use it?

What I most regularly did at that point was I did a lot of long-distance running. I was using the gym for the spin classes. I’d go maybe once a week. It was a family gym membership and I was the only person in the family using it. I saved some money by canceling it. I was definitely getting a better workout on the Peloton. Eventually, I did give up running. I found that as I was getting older, too many aches and pains and even though I still consider myself a runner, I don’t run at all anymore. Kudos to you, Crystal, for taking up running. I did the opposite.

As Tom always says, all of my joints were in new condition. It’s the benefit of starting late to the game.

I missed running so much and I miss the races. I miss running outdoors with friends and that was the hardest thing was giving up the running, but I have never felt better.

Don't pigeonhole yourself, just experience everything. Click To Tweet

If it makes you feel any better, Irene, I go so slowly. You still wouldn’t be able to do any of those things. It’s like walking with a little bit of a fast forward. That’s my speed. It’s still running.

I love that my sister convinced me to try Peloton took her another year from when I purchased my Peloton for her to purchase her Peloton. That’s been fun because she lives in Denver. I’m here in Connecticut and we try to ride with each other. We sometimes use the video chat function to look at ourselves while we’re sweating away. She’s like the only person I would be brave enough to use that with.

It’s a little awkward. I’m not going to lie because you can only hear one side or the other. It’s mostly gesticulation. It’s basically doing hand gestures at each other anytime. I’ve used it anyway and it’s not pretty.

I wonder if they’re going to keep that functionality. I wonder how many people use it. With my sister, it is a silly thing to do. It’s easier to get on our phones and talk to each other or video chat that way. I’m wondering if that will ever be disabled. I’m sure a lot of people have that camera taped over on their bikes.

I am sure that there are and I don’t know. A lot of people don’t talk about it and I know about every new person says, “What’s that for? Why is there a camera?” That’s a good question.

I did get a few visits from the Cheer Fairy early on. It’s been a while, but those were definitely memorable moments.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


Getting a visit from the Cheer Fairy is memorable. I totally know what you mean. For anybody out there who doesn’t know, we have a whole episode where we interviewed the Cheer Fairy, but she will literally video chat with you and cheer you on. If it’s a special milestone ride and there are signs and there’s usually some neon lights involved, it’s fun and festive. You cannot miss it if it happens.

Except for the phone call, take the video chat.

You have to talk to the Cheer Fairy at least once. Speaking of the Cheer Fairy, how involved in the community do you feel you are?

I’m pretty involved. I’ve always done live rides and followed other people, but it took a while for me to get engaged in the community. I certainly followed the OPP early on before the numbers got out of control. It was a different community at that point. Things changed for me. I have to owe it to you, guys. I was listening to one of your episodes and you had interviewed someone in a tribe now that I’m a co-administrator of. Because of the interview that you did, I decided to join and got to know a lot of people. I liked the racing and the pacing that they were doing. The whole tribe was dedicated to ‘80s music and I’m an ‘80s kid. I joined and met the most wonderful people. In fact, shortly after I joined, I went to an HRI that was last minute, but it was one of those HRIs where everyone said, “This works. Let’s go to New York.”

A whole group of us went down to New York in October of 2017 and met each other for the first time in person. It was funny. Everyone had the same introduction, “I can’t believe I’m doing this. We’re not like this. This is not what I normally do.” Everyone had the preface why they were there and how they weren’t some weirdo on the internet. We found that we had so much in common beyond the bike. Everyone had Type-A personalities. Everyone loves the structure, worked hard, and played hard. It’s a great group of people. From there, I’ve joined a few other tribes and pretty much stayed committed to those tribes along the way. In addition to the first one, which was Fast Times. I’m an active member of the Mileage Maniacs and in the last year or so, I joined the Pelo Law Moms tribe.

It's so stressful when you're not able to help people to the degree that they need the help even when you do your job and do it perfectly. Click To Tweet

I have to laugh about the Fast Times because that’s the group that we got kicked out of or I got kicked out of. Tom was never in it. I’m not going to go down that road. It made me laugh that you said that. I’m glad that you met many great people there though and throughout all of the different tribes. For Mileage Maniacs, we interviewed Peter Gaan. The last group that you said, Pelo Law Moms, I’m curious about that group. How many people are in that group?

I’d have to check. It’s one of the smaller groups though.

I understand it’s small, but I also understand it is quite active.

I’ve got a son who’s in high school and a daughter in college. When I joined, I felt like a lot of the vibe was about trying to balance a law practice with having younger kids. I went through that. I get it. I’m done. My kids are older so I don’t have the same day-to-day struggles, but I’m almost like the grandmom in the group, “It’ll be fine. You’ll look back fondly on these days. Everything will work out. Don’t stop working. You’ll be fine. The kids will be fine.”

By the way, you have one of the most photogenic families I have ever seen. You guys always look like you should be gracing in the front of a magazine cover, all of you. It’s crazy.

My kids take 100 photos and then they select one. Come on. It’s working for you. It gets passed around and they delete. We could always Photoshop those if their eyes are closed.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


Circling back on the Cheer Fairy, it’s Episode 10 and that was Lisa Carlson. We also in that episode discuss a pending IPO.

Lisa Carlson, right after I went to New York City for the first HRI back in 2017, I convinced my sister to fly in for it too because I didn’t want to go alone. She flew into New York. It turned into one of those funny weekends and I could not have done without my sister. This is going to make me sound crazy because so much happened in one weekend. Lisa Carlson had organized a Sunday afternoon Connecticut-based Peloton meetup in New Haven. She got us on one of those group bikes where you peddle and you drink. I saw my sister who had flown into New York. I said, “Before you go back, we have one more thing we need to do. We need to peddle this group bike around New Haven and drink a lot on a Sunday night and then you’re free to go.” That’s what happened to it was between the drinking and going bar to bar on a Sunday night in New Haven. I remember us having Peloton signs and going through the campus of Yale and being obnoxious. These poor kids are touring the campus with their families. It was horrible. It’s a little bike trip. That was a memorable afternoon.

I can’t believe you did that at the end of your first HRI visit because that weekend, I don’t know about you, but I was exhausted.

It’s tiring. My husband drove down to New Haven to pick us up. He was horrified. He was like, “What is Peloton drink?” He was a little jealous and a little freaked out that he’d find me in the back of a trunk somewhere, “Who are these virtual people? What have they done to my wife?” He’s a little apprehensive about some of these relationships, but he’s come to embrace it over the last few years.

Every time you meet your fake friends, it’s a little weird. You don’t know, but you meet them and it’s like you’ve always known them. It’s crazy.

No matter how you feel, just run one mile and your body will take over from there. Click To Tweet

Crystal and I met online. There was no exercise involved.

When I was dating, I would text people and be like, “This is who I’m going out on a date with. This is where we’re going. If I should get murdered, at least you’ll know who to blame.”

Going back to the Pelo Law Moms, it’s an active group. I personally found a lot of comfort there beyond the kids and all those issues when I decided to leave my job in the last few months. I had been working at one company in-house for several years. When I decided to leave before even talking to some of my friends, I went to that group and solicited feedback from other attorneys who went from in-house to opening up their own law firms. It was amazing to hear all the different stories from these strong women who made some difficult choices and learn about the good and the bad. That group was supportive. In fact, I did strengthen a number of my personal relationships with a few members of the group. One member in particular, we’ve partnered and affiliated and I’m picking up and performing work for her law firm in New York and that has been great. She’s been a fantastic mentor to me. I wonder if I could have done it as well as I’m doing it if it weren’t for her, her support, feedback and cheerleading in my corner.

I’ll tell you, the whole Peloton and the binds that it makes for people, the connections it makes are incredible. I never can get over it how it happens.

I’m also connected to Robert Brinker‘s group, the Dragon family. He is such a positive person and has embraced both me and my sister. In fact, he’s in Aspen and my sister’s in Denver, so they speak regularly. They’ve developed a nice, strong relationship. I look at him as being a friend to a great guy and knows how to bring people together. Another cheerleader that’s always there to give you that support that you needed when sometimes you don’t know you even need it.

He is a cool person. I’m impressed by the art that he does, his outlook on life and the joy that he spreads. We’re going to be interviewing him. It is wonderful. I’m definitely looking forward to that. Tell us which instructor you ride with the most and why?

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


I’m an instructor agnostic. I like riding live, so I’ll take live rides based upon what fits in my schedule. I found myself on an EDM ride and who was the instructor? It was Cody and I’m riding and I’m looking at my output and I’m like, “What the hell?” This is not my music genre. I don’t usually ride with Cody, but what a ride. I always surprise myself. I’ll jump on anything. I always find that the rides are great. I hear new music that I never thought I would appreciate. The advice I’d give to anyone is don’t pigeonhole yourself, experience everything.

I wholeheartedly agree with that especially when you’re first starting out, you don’t know what you like or what you don’t like. You might think a certain thing by judging a book by its cover, but you hop on a ride and you might have a completely different experience than what you expect.

Nobody is disappointed in me. I heard her say, “I’ll jump on anything, but I let it slide.” She could sue me. I still want people to think like, “Is he okay? How did he not have something to say there?”

If you could have seen the face he made, Irene. I thought we were going to slide right past it but no, he went back.

I’ve got a rep to protect. I don’t want people to think I’m slipping now that I’m pushing 50.

Finding a smaller group with people who have interests in common to yours is critical to feeling engaged. Click To Tweet

You mentioned you used to be a runner, you don’t run anymore, but do you use any of the other Peloton content like the yoga or the strength exercises, anything like that?

On a regular basis, I use the meditation and that came out of a challenge I did with the Maniacs. It was right when they started rolling out a lot of their digital content. As the challenge proceeded, the teams that we were assigned to had to do yoga, walking, all these floor workouts. I became acquainted with the digital offerings, which I didn’t end up using other than the meditation. What I do for a full-body workout is I do a bar. The workouts would be too much for me. The bar is a nice combination with the spinning, but the meditation is something that I try to do on a daily basis.

I was sitting here watching his face and it was totally dead serious. I didn’t even see that one coming.

You’re a lawyer and you’ve already talked about getting drunk. I could’ve gone 1 of 2 ways with that. I went with a professional way because your husband is already upset.

Do you know what they say about lawyers? We’re heavy drinkers. The stress of the job gets to you and you end up drinking too much. We have a bad rep when it comes to drinking. If my reputation is that I go to the bar, I’d rather have it be the workout bar than the drinking bar, but I’d probably do both too much.

I don’t see why it’s stressful. It’s the clients that go to jail.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


What law do you do if we may ask?

We do employment law. For many years, I did the defense side. I represented companies and work for the man. When I left my job at the company and opened up my own law firm, I switched sides and now I represent employees.

When you represent employees, what is stressful about that from your perspective? From the person who’s going through the lawsuit, I get what’s stressful for them. Because you have all these deadlines you have to meet, is that the pressure of you want to win for them? Is it all of the above or is it something I would never even think of?

It’s not the deadlines. I’m a person who feels deeply and now that I’m working with individuals, I’m seeing how bad the situation is for them, I feel horrible. It’s like being a friend and seeing someone in the worst moments of their life and knowing that you can help them but hoping that you can also help them. I know I have all the expertise to do it, but you don’t have everything within your control. If someone won’t settle or agree to do X, Y and Z, I want to do more. What is stressful is not being able to help them to the degree that they need the help. Even when you do your job and you do it perfectly, it’s still a crappy situation to be in. No one feels happy.

You probably never feel like you made everything better. You want to make everything better, but you can’t tie a bow on it and call it a day.

Unless someone is looking for vengeance, that sometimes helps.

I feel like even then, with my own dealings with the legal system, divorce-related, I get arrested. I feel like there aren’t many times when one’s side walks out and crushed it. Both sides walk out going like, “Yeah but no.”

You get part of things that you want and you don’t get others and so you’re happy on one hand and frustrated on another. I would assume with the law you’re doing, you’re ending up in some similar situations.

They call it employment law as corporate divorce law. For the years that I represented corporations, I didn’t have to internalize a lot of the things that were going on. I was acting for the corporation and it didn’t get as personal. I’m still working through some of these emotions, but now with individuals sitting down in front of me, my heart goes out to them. I want to be their champion and make things right. I’m sure that as the days and the weeks and the months and the years pass by, I become more seasoned representing individuals that may change for me. It’s hard to let these feelings go. That’s where the stress comes from.

Plus, if a corporation gets dinged, it’s like your company, you’ll be fine.

It’s a different thought process than a person going through something like that. That makes you a good attorney though. At least from where I would be sitting, if I were having somebody represent me, I would want somebody that cares like that. I totally mean that. You’re taking it personally. You’re fighting in their corner in a way that a lot of people don’t have somebody fighting in their corner, whether it’s for work or medical or whatever. It’s hard to find somebody who will get in there and fight for you. At the same time, be careful. Don’t burn yourself out because I can see that happening too.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


I work hard and I play hard.

We’ll find you at the bar cycle again. That’s awesome.

How often do you get to the studio?

For an HRI, I probably get once or twice a year. Fast Times had a joint one with Mileage Maniacs. The days are flying by. That was fantastic. Also, when I get into New York for business, I’ll always try to get in a little bit earlier so I could take a ride in the studio. It’s always fun. You end up bumping into people you know. I take whatever live ride is there. Sometimes I’m riding with instructors that I don’t ordinarily ride with. It’s a great level of energy in the studio. It’s wonderful. They’re great to home riders in the New York studio.

I feel like I want to binge on rides when I’m there. I want to do as many as I possibly physically can do while we’re there. At least that first day because probably everything will happen the second and third days. I’m like, “I don’t know how much time I’m going to have to do it.” That first day I’m like, “4 or 5 rides, let’s do it.”

Same here and you’re tired. Even though I don’t feel like I’m working out as hard, my outright is a little bit lower. I have a fan at home. There’s no fan there. You end up getting sweaty and gross. You’re going back to back rides. You’re meeting people in between the rides. It’s much energy, but it’s exhausting. I always burned myself out. I need a whole day afterward to sleep and rest up because it is taxing.

I wish we lived closer. I know I say that all the time, but I do. It would be amazing. Does anybody else in your family use the bike?

My son and my daughter both have accounts. My son has two rides. My daughter, since 2015, I don’t know, maybe twenty rides. The answer is no. I find my daughter occasionally on, but they’re a little freaked out by me and they don’t want to touch it. I gave him the stink-eye.

I started a new job. I had a hard epiphany at how much I talk about the bike. I know it because we’re on the show. I know I talk about the bike, but I had worked at the other place like my evolution of Peloton. Even as it ramped up, they adjusted accordingly. These poor people are like, “What happened?” I come in. I’m wearing the Peloton jacket. I’ve got a Peloton bag and let me sell you Peloton.

She’s like, “Do you have a personal relationship with Peloton? Have you heard the good news?

I’m a little out of control. I didn’t know it was that bad. They ride. There are two people there that one of them has a bike and one of them doesn’t have a bike, but they ride. I’m like, “This is what you should take based on your personality and this is what you should try. You should do this and that.”

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


My husband and I took two weeks off and we did this hiking trip in the Swiss Alps with another group, strangers. We didn’t know them. We went on this tour. On the first day of the hike, I learned that one of the other hikers owned a Peloton. Immediately I was like, “Who’s your favorite?” He’s looking at me like I’m crazy. He’s not one of those riders.

It is funny that many people are rabid about it. You forget that there are some people that they ride the bike. That’s the extent of their involvement.

We were coming back from the cruise. Do you remember that guy that sat in front of us? I started talking to him because he had a Peloton shirt on. I thought, “We’ve got one.” He was like, “I don’t do any of those things.” He didn’t know anything other than the rides he takes and he was more into scenic rides. He had no enthusiasm.

My husband, some of his friends from college have Pelotons. One day he came home from work and he goes, “I want to let you know those normal people who own Pelotons aren’t like you.”

I disagree, I think you’re the normal one. These newer people who have come to Peloton later in the game haven’t gotten the bug in the same way that the people earlier on did. There are exceptions to that. There are people that are as fanatic as we are. They’re newer, but some of them don’t like social media or if they do, they’re not on it all the time and the OPP is not welcoming.

They do try the OPP and they get punched in the face and they’re like, “Other Peloton people are dicks.”

It’s a different experience for people now versus back in 2016, 2015. It’s a completely different personal experience.

I remember on my first HRI, we had a cocktail party on the Thursday night before the actual HRI. We’re at a bar and Dennis Morton shows up, “Let’s hang out.” We hung out for a while, talked about surfing. It was such a normal fun conversation. I didn’t think anything of it at the time. Now fast forward a couple of years, I can’t even imagine one of the instructors stopping over for a happy hour and hanging out for the night. It wouldn’t happen.

If it did, everybody would be texting their friends and that place would get mobbed in seconds.

I remember too when the OPP were only a couple of hundred members. Who was it that used to post like, “Who’s riding what ride?” You’d see who was riding because they’d post on the OPP. It was easier to follow certain people and they had their own little shtick or the stuff with the coffee cups, the magic pants, all these neat little things that now are lost in the thread. I also remember the fighting that started on the OPP. Do you remember when there was the splinter group, The Badasses? I remember going, “Yeah, I’m joining The Badasses.” I don’t think that even exists anymore.

Those splintered and that became the OG Badasses or something and then there are the real Badasses of Peloton. It is still out there.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


I’m not following either anymore, but there was a lot of drama early on. Nothing like what we see now.

It’s a little boring out there because it’s all like, “I have a milestone. My pedals squeak.” It’s literally the same five things over and over again. I rarely ever see anything unique as you said with the cups and stuff.

I also remember knowing the people on the page, someone who was in financial distress even.

I know exactly what you mean because when we started the show, that was my thinking. There are all these people that I see every day that I want to get to know. Now I still have that, but it’s from all the other groups, not from the OPP but that’s where it started. I would see the same people over and over again. I can’t even tell you the number of people that we’ve raised money for that needed a bike or had health issues. They’re on and on. We’ve done that. It’s different. Now if you ask for anything, they’re like, “You want money from us.” They get mad.              

That’s where the tribes have become important especially the ones that are in smaller numbers and people can find their own. For new riders, the first thing to do is get off the OPP or don’t look at it every day. You don’t have to be active. Finding a smaller group with people who have interests in common to yours is critical to feeling engaged or at least having the same feeling of engagement that we had earlier on.

What is your leaderboard name?

It’s Scream.

I haven’t seen your picture in a while, but I love that you always had your face like you were screaming.

I was screaming. We have a house up in Vermont. During the ski season, it’s a house full of people. One morning, I was driving 1 of the 3 cars to the mountains and there must have been eight adults and twenty kids. It was like herding cats and ski poles and skis and boots. I couldn’t get everyone out of the car or in the car. I can’t remember whether we were dropping off or picking up. I remember taking a selfie, screaming like, “This is insane. What are we doing here?” When I selected my leaderboard name, which Scream is an old nickname, I thought back to that picture. I’m like, “I have that picture somewhere like freaking out.” It was a legit scream.

It was appropriate. I love it.

Thank you.

TCO 137 | Peloton Bike


Do you have advice for newbies or like we did that so I don’t want to put you on the spot for more if you don’t have any at the ready?

My advice to newbies, especially if you’re getting into a fitness routine, is to ride consistently. You don’t have to do a heavy ride every day, but staying close to the bike and working it into your routine. I’m a big supporter of early morning rides before the day gets away from you. Trying to at least sit on the bike, pedal, moving your legs, you’ll end up going farther than you think that you would have even on a bad day. Consistency is key absolutely.

I should remember it more often get on the bike even if I don’t feel like it.

They used to say with running is that when you’re scheduled to run, run the first mile. No matter how you feel, run 1 mile and your body will take over from there but run the first mile.

They probably didn’t know that it takes me 30 minutes to run over too.

I’m still impressed that you’re running. That is fantastic.

Thank you. It’s sweet. I’m being self-deprecating because I am like a turtle.

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day.

Where can people find you on social media? If somebody wants to hunt you down as an attorney, how should they go about that?

I’m on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. I’m under Irene Bassock for Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, which I don’t use, but my handle there is @I_Scream_Louder. I know I was late to Twitter, so Scream wasn’t available. For my law firm, the name of the firm is Empower Legal Group and you can find us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram under Empower Legal Group. There’s a Twitter handle, which for the life of me I’ve forgotten, but it doesn’t matter. I don’t use Twitter all that much.

Thank you for joining us.

Irene, thank you for doing this. I appreciate it.

Thank you for asking. I appreciate it. Thanks.

Important Links:

About Irene Bassock

TCO 137 | Peloton BikeI’ve been riding since 2015. I’m passionate about the bike and the community and all the positive things it’s done for me and others.

I love sharing stories about the personal and work relationships that this bike has brought me. Plus, my husband is suspicious of my passion for the community. He truly does. He’s so afraid that I’m part of a cult.

134: The Peloton Commercial Everyone Is Talking About And Our Interview With Aly Orady

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial


Peloton may have earned its reputation in the fitness industry, but another product is competing its way to American homes. Tonal claims itself as the world’s most intelligent home gym and personal trainer and is ready to move you with its awesome techie features. Here to impress Crystal and Tom O’Keefe with this product is Tonal CEO Aly Orady. Aly points out what sets their equipment apart from Peloton and shares how their incentivizing strategy can transform the way people engage with it, thereby transforming their lives for the better. Crystal and Tom also share their thoughts on the controversial Peloton commercial and how it has affected the company’s integrity.

Listen to the podcast here:

The Peloton Commercial Everyone Is Talking About And Our Interview With Aly Orady

What do you have in store for people?

We’re going to talk about the Peloton commercial. I know you’ve heard it to death, but we’re going to talk about it anyway. We’re also going to talk about all the new stuff that happened with Peloton. They added a bunch of things. Tom found an article we’re going to discuss. We’re going to touch on the stock market. We’re also going to include a little message that we received. We’re going to talk about an update on Tonal, how that’s been going and some other new things that Peloton is doing as far as giving. The new collection dropped. We have a former instructor update that we’re going to touch on. We have The Clip Out challenge. You’re going to pick a square or two, so you may want to pay attention.

Before we get to all that, shameless plugs. Don’t forget we’re available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts, you can find us. While you’re there, be sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode. It makes it nice and easy so you don’t have to remember because remembering gets harder the older you get. Also, you can go to our Facebook page, Like the page and join the group so you can converse a little bit more easily. Check out our website, where you can sign up for our weekly newsletter. It’s where you’ll get all the show notes, links and videos and all that stuff just sent straight to your inbox so you don’t have to comb through the Facebook page to find some stuff that’s maybe 3 or 4 days old. There is all of that. Let’s dig in.

Let’s talk about the commercial now. We talked about it when we came out. You liked it. I was a little bit more lukewarm on it. For a lot of reasons, people are now vilifying it.

That is all the accurate information. I have to say, this is not my favorite Peloton commercial ever, but the reaction that it’s gotten, it’s not deserving of that. Although I find it fascinating that this commercial came out and all of a sudden, it goes viral. It’s like, “What took you so long?”

It took that long for it to reach the critical mass of frequency to people, see it a couple of times, and they’re like, “Wait a minute.”

An overview in case you somehow missed this commercial. The commercial we’re talking about is the commercial in which the woman gets a Peloton Bike for Christmas from her husband. She does a year-end review. She documents her experience. Her first live ride, her first shout-out, getting her milestone ride, getting up at 6:00 AM and things like that. She presents it all in a video form to her husband to say thank you for the amazing gift that she got. Apparently, all of that boils down to she’s been kidnapped, her husband beats her and makes her lose weight.

Even though she’s already thin.

She’s already thin so what the hell did he get her a bike for? It’s funny. People are all up in arms like, “Peloton doesn’t get it. They’re so focused on weight.” They never said the change was about losing weight. Never did they say that you added it.

People are used to when they see a fitness advertisement for product or fitness equipment, it’s about weight loss. That’s the intention. That’s a fair thing for the consumer to assume. If they’re going to send a message that your transformation isn’t just on the scale, then they need to do better storytelling. There needed to be some acknowledgment that she had requested the bike.

I do totally agree with that. I think there’s Peloton shorthand for those of us who are going to have a bike. We know that that woman was excited to get the bike because she wanted the bike.

You know why she was nervous to get on the bike where she was nervous about a live ride. That’s something that you see repeated time and time again on the OPP. People talking about being nervous getting on a live ride. They’ve had the bike for six months and they still haven’t done one. That’s a common occurrence. If you’re not already in the world of Peloton, someone saying they’re nervous about getting on a spin bike or a stationary bike sounds ridiculous.

I do feel that Peloton missed some of those moments of storytelling. As a person who owns the bike, it was very easy for me to fill in. That’s why I did like the commercial. It wasn’t my favorite, but I certainly didn’t hate it. I get why people did. I get why they feel Peloton didn’t tell the whole story. I think that there were other ways to go about this. I think that they could have described it and I think the Peloton now knows that they need to pay a little more attention to that. However, the real victim here is the poor lady in the commercial. Now, she’s a meme on the OPP. Everyone is like, “I lost my shoes,” and they have that fearful look in her eye or whatever. “I’m about to do power max ride for the first time,” and that look is on her face. It makes me sad because, as you’ve said a million times, Tom, she had to have been so excited to get this job for Peloton. Now it’s turned into, “Can she even walk down the street?” It’s everywhere.

I know I have to translate everything into pop culture and nerd and I picture someone to be like, “I got cast in the new Star Wars project. It’s so exciting,” and then it’s the holiday special featuring songs like What Do You Buy A Wookie When He Already Has A Comb? That would be sad.

The thing is that there’s so much happening here. They’re saying the stocks have taken a hit because they had this horrible ad and there’s so much backlash about it because they lowered the price, which we’ll get to. That’s another subject. The price has dropped. Here’s the thing. The entire stock market was crap. Regardless of your political affiliations, the stock market was affected by the fact that the president said, “We’re moving forward on trade, putting all that stuff in place,” embargoes or whatever he’s doing. The point is the entire stock market took a huge dive that day, not just Peloton. It has continued to slide. The rest of the stock market hasn’t gone as bad. I also think that it’s very possible that after they see all the sales that occur, it’s going to go right back up. It is a blip. This is nothing. Peloton in the long run I believe will be the better for this. I don’t know if you want to jump into their response.

They were hoping it was going to blow over.

No, I disagree. I think they were like, “Let it go. Let it run.” There’s no such thing as bad press and this is a silly thing and it’s everywhere. It would not surprise me if it shows up on Saturday Night Live.

It was on Jimmy Fallon.

It’s been on NBC. It’s been on Entertainment Tonight or whatever. It’s literally been on everything.

Even we were interviewed by our local NBC affiliate. They came out to the house and did a thing.

As soon as we see it, we’ll post it out there. Be nice because I was wearing workout clothes on camera. I’m a little vulnerable with that. It was right after Thanksgiving. It is not my best moment.

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial

Peloton Commercial: Besides weight loss, Peloton promotes strength, fitness, and stamina.


We’ve never told this story, but in this news piece, I revealed that I bought you the bike without you asking for Christmas. I ordered you to start a podcast and document it all. It was me. I apologized.

Thanks a lot, Tom. Peloton’s response to this whole thing was basically like, “You guys misunderstood. We’re sad that you misunderstood and fitness is important to us.” It was pretty short. They didn’t have a lot to say and they didn’t say who said it. It was a spokesperson for Peloton. I feel like this has been taken way too far.

People for years have been wanting them to do something, a campaign similar to like what Dove does. Maybe this will the impetus for them to do that.

It will be interesting to see what Peloton does with it. Consistently, Peloton has taken what members have said and they have listened to that advice. It doesn’t always take the form that we would like. It doesn’t mean that you get exactly what you want because there’s a bunch of us, but they do listen and they do make changes based on it. I am very curious to see what they do with their next ad.

In the midst of all this hubbub, there was actually a positive article in Forbes.

It’s a smart article. I enjoyed it, not just because I agreed with it, but it does help. It was from Forbes, like Tom said and it’s called, How the Peloton Ad Radically Changes the Conversation About Mental Health and Being the Boss of Your Own Life. I feel like this article sums up the real feelings that Peloton was attempting to say. There are so many things that can happen from this bike that aren’t weight loss. They’re being stronger, being fit, being able to have stamina to ride for 50 miles, 100 miles, 200 miles and thousands of miles in one year. Also, what can never be ignored is mental health. Anxiety, stress, depression, all of those things have been shown to be improved over and over again by exercising. I truly believe that this bike, that exercise in general makes me a different person. I do not feel settled when I don’t exercise at all. I’m sure you noticed.

No, you’re always charming and delightful. Are there fluctuations? I was unaware.

You look like the terrified lady in the ad. I thought that this article summed all of that up very nicely.

I concur. I like the one line they had. It says a lot about the people that they view exercise as punishment. I do, but it is interesting that the tone of so many people is like, “How dare someone exercise.” I get it’s also the mentality of their perception is that the husband is making her or there’s some passive-aggressive act of here’s a piece of exercise equipment. It does say a lot about how people view exercise.

It also says a lot that they’ve never tried it because that is how I felt about exercise most of my life. That’s it. Peloton doesn’t feel like that. Peloton is different. It’s like if you guys would just stop bitching long enough to try the product, maybe you might feel differently and you too would get the commercial. We all agree the commercial could have been done in a clearer way, but no one’s trying to fat shame, hate shame or anything, least of all Peloton. They would never do that. This is not who they are.

All of that eclipsed the fact that they have lowered the price for Peloton Digital.

It’s a big drop. $19.99 was the price and now it dropped to $12.99. Some facts that not everybody is aware of because not everybody has been around the entire time. The interesting thing is Peloton Digital used to be $13 and then it went up to $19.99. Now, it’s returning to the price. The other thing that I don’t think a lot of people understand is that at $19.99, you could have multiple accounts on it. No more. Now, it’s cheaper, but it’s per person. You and I could have had one digital account for $19.99. Now, we each have to have a $13.

What happens if someone was doing that already? What if it’s a couple, they got to buy two now?

I think they have to buy a single one. I did not see any notification of that. I saw your price is lowered.

If they had an option where like, “You can save the $20 level and have multiple accounts.”

They didn’t go into that. I haven’t seen any complaints about that. What I have seen is a lot of complaints about, “Are you kidding me? I pay $40 for my bike and these people get to have all the same content for $13?” I would say, “You also get all of the metrics and you get all of the software updates. You get it not only for the bike, but you get it for the tread. Let’s not forget, now it’s unlimited. Before, you could only have four accounts. Now, it’s unlimited. If we had ten people living in this house, ten people could have accounts.” It says unlimited now.

It’s a different product. It’s like complaining that Netflix charges you $9.99 a month to stream, but you can have the DVDs mailed to you for $8 a month.

If you’re a person who is a single person in your home, you own a Bike, you don’t own a Tread and you’re not using any of the other content other than the Bike, I can see where you’re a little frustrated. You’re paying $40 and you don’t have anyone to share it with, but the Bike itself would personally for me be worth it. I’m still good with paying the $2,000 for that because I love having the metrics live. Not everybody cares about that. If you don’t, there are bikes out there that go for it and you can use the digital membership and that’s fine. I love having live metrics. I love having my heart rate showing up and being able to high five my friends right on my screen. I find all of that integration worth it to me.

Has there been any insight as to why they lowered the price?

No. There are theories, but they are just theories. People theorize that they want to make it more attractive to basically get you as a gateway drug into the rest of the products.

That’s what I was thinking is that I wonder if they had some data that showed them that people that subscribe to digital eventually ended up going, “I’m using this. I want the real thing,” and they’d buy a Bike and they upgrade. I’m wondering if they realized that they weren’t stair stepping people as quickly as they used to because the barrier to entry got higher.

I’m curious to see because they did not address this on the last stockholders’ call. I’m surprised they didn’t. They talked a lot about digital subscriptions and how it was bringing in new users. What they did not talk about was they were planning on lowering the price. Now, it’s going to be another three months before we get the feedback and why they did that. The other theory of why the stock price has dropped is because they lowered the price. From a shareholder’s perspective, that sucks. They’re punishing Peloton by selling off their shares. We’ll see because also, at the same time all of this is happening, they also made some other major changes. Those major changes are now there is an Apple Watch app that people have been asking for forever. There is a Fire TV app. I’m going to start with the Fire TV app. It means if you have a Fire Stick, you can use the Peloton app on whatever TV that you have that with.

Peloton buyers who are frustrated with their purchase are those who are not using the product. Click To Tweet

That’s a good clarification. When I hear Fire Stick, I think it means you need penicillin.

People seem to be very happy with that so far because now they don’t have a mirror to their TV or cast. They can simply use their app to do yoga or whatever on the TV. That’s great. However, the Apple Watch, people are not as happy about. I asked some people because over in the Peloton Data Junkies group, I needed them to explain to me why they didn’t like it. You can use it with non-Peloton apps, so you can run outside, get your data, you can run on a non-Peloton Tread, but you can’t use it on the Peloton Tread. It’s still not giving people what they want and when you use it outdoors on a non-Peloton run, you still have to take your phone with you.

A lot of Apple Watch apps, from my understanding, you don’t need to have your phone with you when it’s running on your watch and the Peloton one, you do. People are frustrated saying, “The technology is there, why aren’t you using it?” I say, “It sucks, doesn’t it? Join the Android club. I’ve been there for a long time.” I say that jokingly. They’re not quite as happy with how that turned out. My greater point is all of this happened in one week. You would think that even if shareholders were upset about the price, they would be like, “They dropped these other things that everybody’s going to love.” It is down overall. It reached a high at 37 and now it’s like the last time I checked, it was down to 31-something.

I will check the stock ticker at and it’s at 31-31.

That’s what it closed at on Thursday, December 5th. It’s been a rollercoaster week for Peloton, but it’s still trading higher than the IPO. To me, that’s still great. That’s a win. It’s going to be fine.

I did some show prep. I found an article on the internet about fitness.

Tell us about this article.

I thought you read it. I just read the headline.

Don’t worry. One of us actually did the work. This article, it’s from and it talks about the age in which many people give up working out. On average, what would you guess would be the age that people would be like, “I’m too old to work out?”

I would think if you’re already doing it, if you’re already an exerciser, it’s part of your life, that it would be in your 60s that you would do it. Once you’ve made it part of who you are, you would keep doing it until there was some major medical issue that sidelined you.

That’s the interesting thing. Two in five respondents admit that they feel too old to get back in the gym. That is 41 years old. The survey of 2,000 adults found out on average the age in which the survey felt too old to work out regularly was 41.

It also is interesting to me that age was one of the obstacles. The most common barrier was not having time, which if you had a Peloton, wouldn’t be a barrier anymore. Peloton is changing the world one exercise at a time. In our interview later with Aly, he’s going to talk about how Peloton opened the door for connected fitness and it is a game-changer. It’s completely changing the landscape and I find that interesting and that it’s coming from someone else who has started a company doing the exact same thing.

The interview is with Aly Orady, who is the CEO of Tonal and he’s also a Peloton user. He’s got a Bike. He got a leaderboard name, which he will reveal in the interview so you can follow him if you’d like. He has great things to say about Peloton as well. His fitness journey is fascinating. The work that went into Tonal and the thought process, I found it very interesting, which is says a lot considering it’s about fitness and it’s me.

I was surprised by how interested you were. I loved the product to begin with, but like many of you, that second fee, I’m not too sure about it.

I thought he had good answers and we will wait and let him explain it to you. I thought he has some good answers. He’s not explaining the price, but explaining the value. That’s the important thing. I was like, “That’s a good point.”

Back to other stuff. There was an interesting article on CFO Dive. I don’t know what KPIs stands for.

Key Performance Indicator.

Which ones the Peloton people track?

Jill Woodworth, who’s their CFO, talked about how they focus on three KPIs or key performance indicators. They were doing a panel discussion and it was hosted by The Wall Street Journal. That’s where this all came from. They focus entirely on their members, which I don’t think shocks any of us. They focus on their strategy. They want to know what things do our members like, what intensity and which instructors. If the engagement is going up, then that means the customers are happy. Also, they test everything before they give it to users. They can track how often one of us is using it. They can right off the bat tell us what works and what doesn’t. They can tell each other what works and what. They’re not going to tell us anything. It goes away or they change it. That’s why. Even though they have all these other things that they’re looking at, that’s what they’re focusing on. What are we using? What do we like? Besides that, the other big thing is churn. They’re looking at all these other things. They’re tracking all these other things, but they’re saying that the bottom line, these three things are the things to focus on. I say, “It’s working.”

We had a real nice voice message.

We had a Facebook Message. She left us a voice clip.

It’s from a Susan Burton Dunton. She took a German ride and told us all about it.

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial

Peloton Commercial: With Tonal, everything is digital and automated and there are coaches in all workouts.


“Hi Crystal and Tom. I’m Susan Burton in Austin, Texas. I’m an OJ from 2014 and my leaderboard name is SusanATX. I’m calling you all to let you know that I finished the 45-minute premier ride with Irene. I have to say even though it’s in German, I didn’t understand everything, of course, but I still got a good workout. I could still make out what she was trying to say and accuse it. About midway through the ride, she said she was going to switch over to English and she took the time to thank some of the American instructors. It was sweet what she had to say. She switched back over to German for the rest of the class. Anyway, I loved it. She was very comfortable in front of the camera. She had a great presence and great energy. I want to encourage everybody to jump on and give her a try. I’m thinking if we ride with her enough, we can all learn to speak fluent German. Check this out. This is a count down from three, drei, zwei, eins. If you’re not into it, don’t care about it. Go on there to look at her because she is smoking. Sending you all love from the heart of Texas where we got the best barbecue, Tex-Mex, and live music. Bye now.”

How can they do that if they would like to?

You can do it in a couple of different ways. It’s basically you just need to get a voice clip to me. You can do that through Facebook Messenger by pressing the little microphone. It will say press and hold to record or you can send it over like an mp3 player. Use your voice recorder on your phone and send that on an email. Honestly, anything that gets to an MP3 works.

We had a couple of celebrity Peloton sightings, so let’s rank these people so they feel bad about themselves. We’ll start with Molly Sims who is the editor of O Magazine, Oprah’s magazine.

I was sent an Instagram post where you can see in the background, she has both the tread and the bike, and that was in Health Magazine. In the O world, we found out that Gayle King has a Peloton Tread on her list to ask Santa for.

Do you think there’s any skirmish between Gayle and Oprah? Oprah put a Flywheel. Oprah had a Flywheel on her Oprah’s Favorite Things list. Now, Gayle is wanting a Peloton Tread. Has there been a falling out?

No, I think it’s just that Oprah sells the list. It’s like we put this stuff on a list that people pay for and then there’s a list of what you actually want. I think she and Gayle are dead on. They would agree that Peloton is way better.

Also, Alanis Morissette.

She’s doing a 25th-anniversary tour.

That means she’s playing the whole thing from start to finish.

No. She came off the latest album. She’s doing her old hits and she’s playing some of her latest songs.

As a concert promoter, I love it when they play new songs. It’s great for beer sales.

They will do that, I’m sure. I hope that I get to go to. Tom, I want to go to Molly Sims.

My goal is to get all put together for next year. I’ve been gathering them.

The new holiday collection is out. You don’t need the Alanis tickets for Christmas.

No, that’s not true, Tom, because I use referrals.

You don’t need the Alanis tickets. You’ve got all the stuff that’s there. Can you use referral codes for Alanis tickets?


I can see the sad puppy dog face she’s making.

It’s holiday collection, I was a big fan and I didn’t even get all the things I wanted. I held back, believe it or not. I got a green outfit. It’s like emerald green and it’s gorgeous. I had to get that. I had to get the white shirt that matched it perfectly. I also had to get the Peloton pajamas. They look cozy, although they are ridiculously expensive. That was a lot. I also got a whole other outfit that was pink and gold. It’s like the sunrise one. I got a shirt to match that too. I also got a decal and some earrings. It’s going to be lots of packages. Maybe I don’t need those Alanis tickets.

It all comes full circle. Finally, we have a Steven Little sighting.

For a while, he’s been teasing about, “I’m coming back.” Everyone’s like, “Here we go again. What does this mean this time?” What it means is he’s completely out of the fitness game.

A lot of movement is through cuing and through a learning curve. Click To Tweet

He’s not doing it professionally.

It’s not quite the same, Tom. I’m sure he still works out, but now he is selling real estate in Florida, so he’s got his own website,

He came from the world of real estate. He’s done this before. I know people loved Steven Little. There is a great deal of passion there. People like to know where the instructors that are no longer with Peloton have landed and what they’re up to.

That reminds me, I also have an update on Nicole Meline. She has a brand-new journal that’s out called The Aspire Journal and it’s a great way to keep track of your personal and fitness goals all in one place. You can find that on her website. You Google Nicole Meline, it will pop right up.

Joining us is the CEO and Founder of Tonal, Aly Orady. How is it going?

Thank you for having me. It’s going great.

Thank you for taking the time to do this. This is cool.

We’ve never had someone with their own producers setting things up and an engineer and it’s very fancy.

We’re excited to be here and we were in the production business and so maybe we overdo things sometimes.

We’ll take overdo as opposed to underdo any day. Tell us what exactly sparked the idea for Tonal for you?

It was a personal struggle, to be honest. If you rewind and look at my background, I’m not the person who should be the CEO of a fitness company. My first job out of college was working for Hewlett-Packard on their supercomputing lab, where I was designing computer chips and I worked there for a couple of years. Being in Silicon Valley, I went to a bunch of startups and was building telecom gear and video, on-demand gear. The things that bolt to a Verizon cell tower, Comcast data center. I started working on even heavier equipment, like the stuff that might go into Goldman Sachs data center to crunch lots and lots of numbers.

I then built a company in Silicon Valley. I sold it to Samsung. When I was 35 years old, I hit this breaking point with my health where professionally I was having a blast. It was doing great but by that point, I had Type 2 diabetes. I had sleep apnea. I was overweight. I had been overweight my entire life actually since I was a kid and I’ve struggled with my weight. It felt like I was heading to a point where if I didn’t do something about it, it was going to be like that for the rest of my life. My health is just going to continue to degrade. Quite frankly, when I saw my doctor and he was getting louder and louder.

He sat me down. He’s like, “You have to do something about this.” He started getting personal. I woke up one morning and I’m like, “I’ve got to do something about this.” I quit my job and said, “If I make something my full-time job, I succeed at it. When it’s not my full-time job, it always falls to the wayside. I’m going to make this my full-time job.” I spent about nine months getting to fitness and I lost about 70 pounds. I completely reversed the sleep apnea. I got diabetes very well under control to the point where my test results might argue that I’m not actually diabetic.

I got that all under control. Along the way, the first thing I did is I started doing a lot of cardio and watch what I ate. I’d go to the gym and hop in a cardio machine and I lost a lot of weight in the first four weeks, and then I plateaued. I was reading a lot, trying to figure out how to break through this plateau. I looked over and all the personal trainers were over in the weight room. I started to read more about strength training and quickly realized that strength training helps you build muscle. The most you build, the higher your basal metabolic rate and the easier it becomes to burn fat as opposed to cardio, which if you do too much it, you can burn muscle in the process, which reduces your basal metabolic rate and makes it harder for you to lose fat.

It’s ironic. I started figuring out how to strength train, which turned out to be hard. After doing this for about nine months, I got comfortable with it really. I got addicted to it. I loved it. I was getting up every morning at 5:00 and heading to the gym because that’s when I could be there and not have anyone else in my way and get it done well. I came to a point where I lost all this weight and I was thinking, “I’m going to have to get a job and probably have to commute and have a family, have kids, and have all of these responsibilities in life at some point. I can’t keep coming to the gym every day at 5:00 in the morning.”

That clearly is not realistic. I’m staring at this giant piece of equipment at the gym and I’m thinking to myself, “How can I shrink this down to something I could fit in my one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco?” That light bulb moment was when I realized that the reason this machine is so big is that it relies on big metal plates and gravity to generate resistance or generate force. If I could use electricity instead, I might be able to shrink it down. I went home. I ordered some parts. I strapped it into my kitchen counter and about three months later, had our first working prototype.

It wasn’t very good. Let’s call it a proof of concept. It was like the flux capacitor moment. It didn’t go below 25 pounds. It didn’t go above 40 pounds. Now, Tonal goes from 5 all the way up to 200. It only did one exercise. You couldn’t do full body, but it was enough to prove that this could be a thing, that this could work. The rest is history. Along the way, I also realized that the challenge with strength training, in general, is not just getting the equipment in your house. We’ve always been able to stick a stationary bike and the corner or a treadmill in the basement, but strength training takes up your whole garage.

I didn’t have a garage. Shrinking down equipment was huge. The other one is I was walking around the gym with a sweaty, crumpled up piece of paper in my back pocket. Strength training has always been analog. It’s never been digitized. You’re taking notes half the time. I’d finally graduated. In strength training, you jump in ten-pound increments. You might graduate from the 40-pound dumbbells with a 50-pound dumbbell and then I’d come back the next weekend, forgot that I graduated and I instinctively pick up the 40-pound dumbbell again. That’s what it’s like in the world when you had to rely on your memory. With Tonal, it’s all digital and automated.

You have coaches that guide you through all of your workouts. You have AI that keeps track of how much weight you should lift on every single exercise, adjust the amount of weight depending on how many reps you’re supposed to do, decides when it’s time for your way to go up. It goes up in one-pound increments. You’re not waiting six weeks to graduate from 40 pounds to 50 pounds. Pretty much every week, you’re bumping up by a pound or two on all of your movements. It’s also more motivating and it’s more fun than it’s in your home and there aren’t other sweaty people stealing your equipment from you. It’ great.

I would think that when you jump up but your only option is jumping up by ten.

It’s intimidating.

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial

Peloton Commercial: As you get more proficient at moves, the amount of instruction decreases.


There are probably times when you’re not quite ready, but then how do you get ready unless you make the jump?

What I always struggled with was I would be good about going to the gym, let’s say three times a week, but then something would happen. I could only go one time a week. I’m like, “Should I go back a pound or do I pick up where I left off? I certainly can’t up to my weight at this point.” It was that struggle of never knowing where it’s good to be picking up or I would just forget. I would lose the piece of paper. The piece of paper was gone.

Now, that we’ve been at Tonal, it took us 3.5 years of product development to get Tonal to market. Those first three months were like the very beginning. Along the way, some of the things that we’ve learned are number one, most people have terrible strength training routines. A lot of times, people tell me they’ve been following the same routine since college or that they just downloaded something off the internet and they’ve been using it for a few years. You’re not supposed to do that. Your body gets used to it and you’re supposed to switch up your routine every 4 to 6 weeks.

The other thing we realize is most people lift the wrong weight. They lift too little weight, and then they’re basically doing cardio instead of strength training and don’t even realize it or they lift too much weight and then their form suffers. They don’t get the benefits and that increases their risk of injury as well. Nailing how much weight should I be lifting is super important to get the results that you want and to have it be fun and not get yourself injured. Also having a good routine is super important. The vast majority of people have no idea how to program a good routine. That’s why coaches are so important.

When you’re looking at most cardio instruction, group fitness or even Peloton, the instructors are there to motivate you. Most of what they’re doing is they’re motivating you. They’re entertaining you. They’re keeping you engaged or getting you to push yourself harder. We, for the most part, know how to cycle. We know how to run. We’ve been doing those things since we were children. Strength training is less intuitive. When you’re with a personal trainer, the education burden is a lot higher. That’s a lot of what we’re doing with Tonal as well. We’re teaching people this new thing. When someone’s new to it and they’re learning how to strength train or someone who’s been doing it for a few years, but could be doing it way better with help, we’re also helping them achieve that as well.

To that point, something that I keep seeing come up over and over again as I talk about my journey with Tonal is that people ask, “What about the form aspect of using the Tonal?” Because you’re not able to get the feedback to say, “My back’s not perfectly straight.” I’m listening to the cues, but people worry that they aren’t going to know what form to use. Is that something that you think a lot of people struggle with or do you think there’s just a little bit of a learning curve? What do you think about that?

We think it’s a learning curve. In the early days, we went through 3.5 years of product development and in two of those years, we had people working out on Tonals regularly. In the final year, we put Tonals in 25 homes for an entire year and tracked 50 people as they worked out on these things. Somehow, they all managed to keep it a complete secret. We were in a building with fogged out windows and no one knew what we were working on. These 25 people were kind enough to keep it off social media and completely keep it quiet until the day we launched and announced the company. We learned a lot.

That’s a bigger achievement in the machine itself. You got 50 people to exercise and not share it on Instagram. What’s the secret?

How do you know someone’s going to be running a marathon? Have a 30-second conversation with them. They will bring it up. They totally kept it a secret. We learned a lot and one of the things that we learned is people learn how to do yoga off of YouTube. With a lot of the cueing that we give and a lot of the instruction, we were teaching people how to move properly. They’re learning how to do it. There is a learning curve. A lot of it is people coming to our communities. We have a bunch of these Facebook groups that are formed and sometimes people go there and ask questions. A lot of times, our coaches are filming supplementary videos and throwing them on social media to dive a little deeper. Here’s the other piece, which maybe you haven’t experienced yet. We have a lot more of this coming. The smart handles that you can use to turn the weight on and off with a click of a button. They also have accelerometers in them where we can measure your movement in three dimensions.

We’re crunching a bunch of that data. We have some of it, but as you get smarter, as our algorithms and our software get smarter and smarter, you’re going to hear better and better, more personalized cues specifically for your form. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but sometimes when you hear Tonal say things like, “Three reps left to go,” or “Last rep, good job,” that’s not prerecorded stuff. That’s personalized to you and happening at the moment that you are at three reps left to go. There are other things you might have heard some of our coaches say like, “Remember to move at a slow and controlled pace,” or “Try going a little deeper into your squat.” That’s all based on the data and the measurement that we have of what you’re doing. While we do believe that a lot of movement is through cueing and through a learning curve, we also are working on all of these avenues of personalized intelligence and personalized cueing for every single person.

People are getting more feedback than they realize, that’s crazy.

I logged into one of our communities one morning and one of our users said, “The first time that it said three reps left to go and I had exactly three reps left to go, I thought it was a coincidence, but by the third or fourth time, I was starting to wonder.”

I thought like it would automatically happen when you got down to three reps. Not every time, but just to keep you engaged. I thought that was an automatic thing. That’s fascinating. It’s cool.

It’s personalized. There’s a lot of personalization in programs. The pacing is personalized. The thing if you’re running or cycling or doing cardio types of activities, that’s usually interval-based. You’re doing something for 30 seconds at a time. In our high-intensity workouts, which are more like conditioning, the workouts are interval-based. When we’re doing stuff that’s more personal training type of content where we’re trying to help you build muscle or hit a specific goal that’s based on strength training, it’s important that you’re hitting rep targets rather than time. It’s important that you do six reps. It will take one person twenty seconds, one person 40 seconds to do that same thing.

Our videos speed up and slow down to match the pace of our users so that if one person needs a little bit of extra time, they won’t feel like they’re falling behind and they won’t rush into strength training, which is a great way for someone to get injured. We don’t want them rushing. We also won’t finish their reps and then sit around waiting for the video to catch up with them. My worst nightmare, pick up their phone and start texting a friend and then you’re no longer working out. Those are the things that you’re trying to avoid. The pacing is personalized. As you get more proficient at moves, actually the amount of instruction you hear will decrease. We say it’s like having our personal trainer and there’s a lot of technology in there that is trying to get people a more personalized experience.

I have noticed that the Tonal business model is similar to the Peloton business model. Was that on purpose or was that something that evolved?

When I started Tonal, one of the big questions you ask yourself is, “Who are you going to sell this to and for how much?” A lot of people look at the Peloton business model and they’re like, “This is a subscription model.” What you do is you sell someone a piece of equipment and then you get to collect membership dues for a long time. Hence, it becomes a profitable business. That’s not how I see it at all. What you’re doing is foregoing the profit you would have made on the bike, or in our case, the Tonal on day one. You’re foregoing that profit by keeping the price of that equipment as low as you can. You’re spreading that profit over the course of the next couple of years. As people pay these membership dues, that’s when you collect the profit.

Like Peloton, we make no money, no profit off of the Tonal. We make all of our profit off the membership. What that allows us to do is to keep the price of the Tonal low so that it can reach as many people as possible. Fitness equipment is expensive and for a lot of people, it’s prohibitively expensive. If you go on Google and type in the word functional trainer, which is the class of equipment that that Tonal is, you’ll find that most of the equipment costs way more than Tonal and it isn’t affordable. What that does is it limits your market size and limits your ability to impact people’s lives. The lower you can keep the price, the more people you can reach and the more lives you get to impact. In return for that, what we elect to do is use a subscription model where we spread the membership dues over for the course of the next few years. When I looked at Peloton, what appealed to me about the model is you can reach a lot more people and impact a lot more lives. All you have to do is be willing to wait longer to get that profit. It’s a great model.

Can I ask, or maybe you haven’t calculated this or maybe you don’t want to say, but if you weren’t doing this model, how much do you envision the Tonal would cost?

If it wasn’t the membership model, the alternate route that I considered was to go to market with a product that costs $9,995, believe it or not. In all fairness, if you were to compare the Tonal and its capabilities with all the other functional trainers on the market, it would totally be a fair price.

Let me ask you this because I have no frame of reference. What does a functional trainer cost?

They cost anywhere from $5,000 to $8,000.

The lower you can keep the price, the more people you can reach and the more lives you get to impact. Click To Tweet

That’s right in line. Honestly, as a consumer, I would prefer this model not just because of the lower cost. Although you could argue over the life of using it, you might end up paying more. I would prefer this because I feel now the company is incentivized to continue creating content and servicing the product in a way that if it was a onetime transaction, they’re not.

It makes it so that we want to make people as successful as possible. Fitness women vendors have for years sold equipment to people and then they don’t use the equipment. Fitness women vendors have no reason to care. For us, we wake up every morning, we check our metrics, like how many people worked out. If someone isn’t working out, we call them. What this does is it allows us to reach as many people as possible. With the financing programs with $149 a month, it makes it much more affordable for a lot more people as well. That’s a great way to expand reach. When you ask the question, “Why this business?” it was about reaching as many people as possible at the end of the day.

Along those lines, one thing that stood out to me is that Tonal’s monthly subscription price is $50 a month. Peloton is $40 a month. How do you explain to customers that difference? I totally get what you’re saying about the cost of a functional trainer, but on the other hand, you could make the argument that for Peloton, that’s for their Tread content, their Bike content and their yoga, etc. I’m sure you have a reason for that, but that’s the big holdup that I hear from people is, “I don’t want to have two fees.” I’m curious what your thoughts are on that.

The $49 a month versus $39 a month, there’s a little bit of nuance in there. One is we’re replacing personal training and personal training sessions cost way more than studio classes. That’s one reason we charge them. Also, the $49 a month includes sales tax and the $39 a month doesn’t. It does even that out a little bit. In terms of the two subscriptions thing, one of the things that we’ve heard a lot from people who own Pelotons and I think you’re aware there’s some overlap, is they say that once I got my Tonal, I finally canceled my gym membership. They had their Peloton Bike for their Tread, but they kept the gym membership and they kept paying for it because that’s where they would go to strength train. Now they got a Tonal and they’re replacing that gym membership they paying for with the Tonal. For a lot of folks, that evens out. In people’s minds, they think of the products as complimentary and they think of their budget for strength training as different from their budget for cardio.

The other thing is we help people achieve goals. We’re not just interested in how often someone works out. We’re interested in whether or not they achieve the goal that they want. Our programs are designed around certain goals. We have a four-week weight loss programs. We have a twelve-week muscle-building program. We have programs to help people get stronger. We have programs to help people train for running a 5K or get ready for ski and snowboard season. That’s the powerful thing about strength training is personal trainers can use it to help you achieve all sorts of different goals. It’s like a Swiss Army Knife if you have an expert who knows how to create the programming. For us, we were delivering not just workouts, we’re delivering outcomes and that’s how we think about it. At the end of the day, if you stack up the value of having a gym membership and having a personal trainer help you figure out what programs you need to follow in order to achieve a goal and teach you form, $49 a month is a steal.

I’m curious too about vertical integration or your supply chain. Does Tonal keep everything in-house or do you find yourself having to outsource a lot of things? I feel there’s a lot of technology involved. I’m curious how that works for Tonal.

We keep almost all of it in-house. Clearly, there are things that we outsource like manufacturing and logistics but all of the software, all of the content production, the programming, the curriculum, all of that stuff is done in-house. We spun up a second studio in Hollywood. We now have one in San Francisco, where we film daily and the second one in LA. It’s trying to crank up the amount of content and the variety. It’s a very poorly kept secret that yoga is about to launch on the platform. In addition to the strength training content, we have a lot of this high-intensity content. It’s hit conditioning types of workouts which are interval-based to keep your heart rate up for 20, 30 or 40 minutes, depending on the type of session you’ve chosen. Of course, all the more traditional strength training stuff, which is very programmed for specific goals and outcomes. We do all of that in-house and it’s keeping us busy.

Have you ever considered some bundle for Peloton users to offset that maybe sticker shock of having two monthly subscriptions?

We see the products as complementary. I think a lot of our existing customers do too. Frankly, even if we were to consider something like that, it takes two to tango.

We get that question so much. Many people are interested. A lot of people that are interested also buy, but the initial reaction from people is, “I don’t want to have a second payment per month.” Obviously, we’ve talked to a lot of people that have gotten past that and are very excited to have both. From my own experience, I can absolutely say that it is very complimentary. I would agree with that.

I’ve been surprised since we started talking about it how quickly people seem to have gotten past it. I thought that there would be more resistance and I’m sure that there are still some out there. Some people, it’s just not in their budget and there’s nothing you can do about that and we understand that. I was surprised how many people were like, “You got me.”

Once someone has been in one of our programs for a couple of weeks or has gone regular with it and worked it into their fitness routine, they do fall in love with it. It provides a structure to people’s fitness lives because it’s not one-off workouts. It’s a program that does change the way people think about fitness. No one who’s had the product for a long time comes back and was like, “This is way too expensive.” In fact, they’re usually saying the opposite like, “This is well worth it.” On the financing programs, we worked pretty hard to roll out a 36-month financing program. We rolled that out and it brought the monthly payment down to $149. That was to make it more affordable for more folks. Health and fitness is an investment in oneself and it’s for the full household. It’s generally not just for one person, multiple people are using it. I hope you both try out the partner workouts that we have now, so two people can share a Tonal and work out at the same time. Those are fun and you guys can poke fun at each other, which I know you both love to do.

I don’t know whatever will it take to get Tom on a workout, but I did try the partner workout with a friend of mine who came over. We did a workout together and it was awesome. I loved it. Tom, he’s anti-exercise.

It’s my personal mission to get Tom to do a workout. I bet this is the thing that could break him and get them working out regularly. Let’s see if we can pull that off.

He did do a dead lift. When we got the Tonal set up, I was like, “Here. Try this.”

I was testing the resistance aspect because it makes that popping sound when you turn it on. The first time we turned it on, we were like, “Did we break it?”

When you turn it on, it goes through a quick calibration. The resistance, when people touch Tonal for the first time, the thing I most often get is, “This is heavy,” or “This can get heavy.” We say 200 pounds, but people look at it and it’s small and it’s sleek. They underestimate it and don’t realize 200 pounds is enough force to pick you up off the ground. A lot of people comment about how smooth it is. I don’t know what your experience was, but that’s what we hear most often.

It’s incredibly smooth. Our fifteen-year-old has been using it. He’s excited to do strength training. It’s cute to see him do it as well.

If he gets too ripped, I might not have the choice. I have to start doing it to keep them in line.

We’re going to crack you one way or another, Tom. Do you want me to partner workout with you?

The readers would kill me for all this and you’re like, “No, you’re out.”

The whole reason you’re here is to be the anti-workout. I finally cave and it’s not a Peloton. I wouldn’t feel too guilty. Now, he wants to make it happen.

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial

Peloton Commercial: Tonal is a program that changes the way people think about fitness.


Do you have any partnerships that you would like to see? I understand Tonal is completely separate from everything else. It has its own unique values, but I also can’t help but wonder if there are things that you see the bigger picture that you want to do with Tonal? That might be a joint partnership or a joint venture with anybody out there? Have you ever considered anything like that?

Nothing that we’re ready to talk about yet. Some of the things you would probably guess on your own. We’ve already started putting Tonals in a couple of hotels and those pilots are going well. We’re going to be doing a lot more of that. Some of the other things that we’re excited about are ones that you probably wouldn’t necessarily guess but potentially some stuff with physical therapy. Some of the more inspiring stories that we hear online are folks coming to us, saying that they’ve had back pains for years and after X weeks on Tonal, their back pain is gone for the first time in their lives or they feel themselves get stronger.

We released a program to help people who have shoulder pains manage that shoulder pain and that’s getting good reviews. The thing about strength training is it’s powerful. I didn’t realize this, but one in two Americans suffers from some musculoskeletal pain, back pain, shoulder pain and neck pain. Strength training is the only way to treat those things. If you go to a physical therapist, they will have your strength training too. There’s no drug. They’ll give you painkillers, but there is no drug. Strength training is the only way. I don’t know that those are necessarily partnerships, but they’re things that when we think about all the ways that we can improve people’s lives, it’s an area we think a lot about. The more places we can get Tonals, it makes it accessible to as many people as possible. We like hotels and we’re also thinking about other places where we can get Tonal so that we can touch more and more lives, which is what we care about.

Why do you think that this is all happening now in terms of what they’re terming connected fitness? It seems like it’s having a moment and taking off.

It’s a confluence of a bunch of things. One is technology. If you rewind the clock, if John had tried to start Peloton ten years earlier, the computing system, the tablet that’s built into the Peloton wasn’t ready. The internet wasn’t ready for that streaming. That was a big part of it, the technology getting to that point. If we had tried to build a Tonal ten years earlier, it probably would have cost twice or three times as much as it does now. As technology has advanced, the cost of the components have come down and made these price points more realistic. The second one and I have to give gift credit to the entire Peloton team. They proved something that no one else had known before. People have always looked at home fitness equipment and assume that it’s going to start collecting dust after six months.

The fact that they figured out a model that aligns the incentives of the equipment manufacturer and the member so that you keep working to make sure that your members are using the product day in and day out for years, that is powerful. It transforms the way people engage with fitness and as a result, that transforms people’s lives. I think that the proof point has brought a lot of investment to this industry. There’s us doing strength training and I think we’re the only ones doing strength training, but we’ve also seen a lot of other equipment hit the market in the cardio side. There are other bikes and other treadmills and rowers. There are all sorts of stuff out there. It was all sparked by what Peloton did. They had a lot of trouble raising money from investors. We had a lot less trouble and the credit goes to them for that.

That would open the doors for you. I didn’t think about that, but that does make sense. Do you see Tonal as being a direct competitor to Peloton or not?

I view it as extremely complementary. At the end of the day, people need to do both. You need to do strength training, you need to do cardio. I own a Peloton Bike. I’m a fitness fanatic. I use both products now. In my case, my core, my program is on Tonal and that’s what I’m following and I complement it with cardio. You need both and I view them as very complementary.

Would you like to share your leaderboard name with our readers?

It’s BeYourStrongest. It’s also Tonal’s tagline.

She can make fun of you. Hers is ClipOutCrystal. We’re doing the same thing.

It’s great because you clearly believe in that too. That’s important to you. That’s perfect for a leaderboard name. That’s awesome.

A lot of us have Pelotons at work and it’s complementary. We have bikes, we have treads. John says it’s the best cardio machine on the planet. Tonal is the best strength training machine on the planet. It’s full-body workout in something the size of your TV and it’s the most advanced piece of strength equipment ever created. We wholeheartedly believe that it’s the best strength training machine on the planet, just as John believes that the Peloton is the best cardio machine on the planet.

Speaking of Peloton, why does Tonal not have live classes? I think I know the answer to this, but I’m curious if I’m right.

It’s the personalization. Peloton is a group fitness experience and group fitness instruction is, by definition, one instructor speaking to 30 people or 3,000 people. With Tonal, it’s all very highly personalized. That video you’re watching, we didn’t point a camera at someone for 40 minutes, record a 40-minute video and then play that back to you. The way that video is playing back to you is highly personalized. We have software AI getting in under the hood and mucking with the video and we’re switching the audio around to make you hear the things that are personalized to you. We’re stretching the video so it gets shorter and longer to accommodate your pace. Once you’re doing all that mucking around under the hood with AI, like a game engine, you can’t go live. For a lot of our more personalized content, it’s not live. It’s on-demand. For a lot of the other stuff we have around the conditioning, high-intensity interval content, the yoga content, we do intend to eventually go live with that stuff when the time is right.

That’ll be interesting for people to have different options so you can have multiple different levels of doing your strength training, but then doing yoga live. I think that’ll be a good mix for people.

We spent a lot of time grappling with this question in the early days and we interviewed people and we’re like, “Why are you so excited about live?” It turned out that as we pushed on it, they were more excited about fresh. What’s important is not the fact that it’s truly live. We find that I think only about 12% of riders are alive in Peloton rides, if you’re looking at it as an example, the vast majority of people aren’t live. Why do you care about so much live? What they cared about is the fact that they always knew that every time they were going to step into a workout, it’s going to be a fresh new experience. It’s not like a DVD where you just keep playing the same DVD over and over again. That’s what we prioritize. That’s why we film every day. That’s why we spun up a second studio. It’s about creating as much fresh content as we can for folks. One day we will go live but the freshness is what we live and die by.

I thought it was cool that you guys added a bunch of new moves to the move library. It didn’t even occur to me that you could. One day, I was on Facebook and I was like, “We added all these new moves.” I was like, “That’s amazing. I had no idea.” I didn’t know I was missing any, but this is cool.

That was coming from our community. They were telling us, “We’re like cables, functional trainers, cable trainers like what Tonal is, except the other ones are analog and run on big metal plates. Ours is digital and runs on electromagnetics. Functional trainers can be used to do a very wide variety of things. They’re the most versatile strength training machines, which is why they’re used by a lot of pro athletes and Olympic coaches and things like that. It’s called functional training. First of all, members of our community, we’re starting to do things that we didn’t have in our library. They started sending us emails saying, “Can you add this? Can you add that?” At some point, we aggregated everything that folks had requested and added them to our library, which also meant we had to teach our AI how to select weights for all of these movements because that’s an important part of it.

We added them all in. The other thing that we released is a workout builder. If someone wants to create their own workout and not necessarily follow one of our videos, then they could just pull out our mobile app, create the workout on the mobile app where you select the movements you want and set how many reps do you want it to and how many times and all that stuff. Walk up to a Tonal and you can literally run through your own workout and we’ll run you through it and automatically select the weights for you and decide when it’s time for you to lift more weight or less weight all automatically. That’s been well received. It was like a party in our community the day we released that.

I am still intimidated to try anything like that. Plus, I’m doing a program, but I thought that was cool that you could put anything you want in there and then it shows up on the machine whenever you got. That’s awesome. Kudos. I like that a lot.

At the moment, you guys only ship to the US. Is it difficult to get into other countries? Are you planning to branch out or are you focused on the States for now?

A good leader board promotes good behavior. Click To Tweet

International is something that every company aspires to, obviously including Tonal, but right now, we have so much work to do in the United States. We had our first huge holiday season getting through Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which was on fire. We have to do that again and get ready for that next level of expansion. We’re now up to six retail locations. There’s a lot of work to do right here at home. We’re definitely prioritizing that.

I know that’s not an easy process to move into other countries. It’s a lot of logistics. I can’t even imagine.

With the machine going 100 pounds per arm or 200 pounds total, what percentage of people need more?

Like a bodybuilder or somebody who lifts heavy, are they still able to use?

Would a pro athlete need something that was weightier or could they utilize this?

Tonal goes up to up to 200 pounds or 100 pounds per arm. The resistance that comes out of Tonal, it’s a pure resistance. A 100-pound dumbbell or a 50-pound dumbbell, any dumbbell for them, the faster you move, the lighter it gets. This is why on a bicep curl, you could pick it up, swing it. When it’s down by your knee and by the time it’s up to your chest, it’s super light. Tonal isn’t like that. It’s 50 pounds of resistance the entire time through your entire range of motion, no matter how fast you’re moving. You pick up a 50-pound dumbbell and you can do bicep curls relatively easy compared to a Tonal. You set it to 50 pounds and do way harder. It’s because of that no momentum, no inertia aspect to the way that our system works.

Our 200 pounds is way heavier than a regular 200 pounds. What we engage in is mostly functional training, which is a multi-joint movement, full body. For most people, getting up to 200 pounds is hard and it takes a long time. It took me two years of training on Tonal before I maxed it out on one movement, which is the dead lift. Even at that point, you have other levers to pull. You can do more sets, you can do a slower tempo. You do 200 pounds and you’re going up, down. That’s not as good as four seconds up, four seconds down. There are a lot of levers that you can pull to stretch that weight.

It’s generally on 1 or 2 movements. Pro athletes use functional trainers for a lot of his functional training, multi-movement and velocity-based training. When you’re doing that type of training, you’re generally not doing heavy weights. You’re generally in the 30 to 70 range and not pushing it. Olympic lifting, which is the stuff you see the big guys at the gym doing, you’re manipulating momentum more than pure resistance. It’s a different style but it’s also way more injury prone and it’s not something we would be pushing for people to do in their homes alone without having a workout buddy there. It’s a much more appropriate form of training for the home. It’s super versatile. You can drive a lot of outcomes with it.

That’s what we want, is versatility in a small and safe footprint. You’ve seen on the Tonal. The arms are all the way up overhead all the way down to the ground. You can do everything from dead lifts, squats and bench presses. You can turn the weight on and off, which allows you to do movements. Most people wouldn’t do on a cable train or you wouldn’t normally use a cable trainer to do a bench press with a bar. Getting underneath the bar with the load on it is hard. For us, you can turn the load off, get into position and hit a button.

It turns it on. You do your bench press. When you’re done, you hit the button, it turns it off. If you want a buddy there to spot you, Tonal will spot you. When you start struggling, it will begin to reduce the weight like a spotter who’s there to help you out get those last few reps. It was designed to be a system that’s versatile, that would allow you to do a lot of things in the comfort and convenience of your home. There may be people who go to the gym and do 600-pound squats and they’re happy doing that. That’s fine. For the rest of us, there’s Tonal.

Tell us about the Tonal community. Are you growing the community? Do you think that the Tonal community is as involved as the Peloton community? As you mentioned, there’s a lot of overlap.

There are three communities now that have formed and they’re all super vibrant. One of the things that I like about the community is people are going deeper on what they’re talking about. There’s a lot more education. Strength training is a meatier topic. Every day, there’s something new and people are asking interesting questions. It’s vibrant because of that. I enjoy that and I follow all the communities and I read as many posts as I can. That’s been great for us. People are being supportive of each other. People are trading phone numbers and texting each other for accountability and all that stuff. It’s exciting. For people who are thinking about even buying a Tonal but haven’t yet, a lot of times, they’re going into the community to ask questions about the product. People who’ve had the product and can share real-life stories, not information off our website, which is pretty standard. What is it like to have this product in your home? They’re going to the communities and real people are sharing real stories and it’s helping people make decisions about whether or not this is the right thing for them.

Personally, what’s your favorite feature on Tonal?

I’ll pick two. My favorite two features are number one, turning the weight on and off. It’s magical the first time you feel it. I love that feature and it allows you to do things that you would never dream of doing. We have Paralympians training on Tonal. I got an email from one of them and he said, “This feature allows me to do things I could never imagine doing otherwise.” It makes the system twice as versatile and it’s powerful. I love that feature. The other feature I love is the AI that chooses how much weight you should lift. Here’s a real story. We spent probably about a year developing and training this AI.

For the first year, we had Tonals and everyone in the office was working out on Tonals and following the programs, but we all had to manually choose our own weights. It would remember how much you lifted and pull up the same weight the next time, but you had to decide how much you wanted to start with and when it was time to increase the weight. We turned this AI on and the first time I walk up to it, it basically brings up a number for my squat, which is double what I had been squatting for the year prior. I was in the middle of the workout and I hit pause. I ran over to the engineer or one of our physiologists. I’m like, “You’ve got to come and check it out. This is a bug. It’s having me lift twice as much weight as I’ve ever lifted.”

They looked at me and they’re like, “How’d you know it’s wrong? Do it and see what happens.” I totally did it and I had no idea I had been lifting half as much. I’m the CEO of a fitness company and I had no idea I was squatting half as much weight as I should have been for a whole year. It’s such a powerful feature. Even in our communities, there’s this love-hate relationship where every time your weight gets upgraded, where we’ve decided next time you’re going to lift more weight, you get this chime. Some people are like, “I hate that sound.” It’s so awesome. It’s so powerful.

You should have a ringtone where people can pick their sound where they could make it something really mean.

There are those GPS on the market where you could reprogram them to have like Samuel L. Jackson’s voice.

If the weight, instead of going up, if it decides you needed to go down in your weight, it could do like a sad trombone or the losing sound from The Price is Right.

Do you have any fun stuff that you can tell us about that’s coming out for tips for the future?

I already spilled the beans on yoga. What we spend a lot of our time working on is intelligence. A lot of what we’re doing is trying to make the products smarter, more intelligent so that weight recommendations are better. The cueing that the feedback that you’re getting is more relevant to you. We have better insights and personalization. That’s where we spend a lot of our energy and that’s about making our workouts as effective as possible. I did spill the beans in one of our communities that we’re working on leaderboards. I’ll go ahead and spill the beans a little bit more publicly here. The leaderboards are going to be a fun thing. We’ve been running leaderboards internally at Tonal. A lot of that is about learning what the right type of leaderboard is. A good leaderboard promotes good behavior while a bad leaderboard can encourage people to do bad things or root against each other. We’re trying to make sure that we nail it before we roll it out to the community so everyone’s a big, happy family.

That’s got to be a rough leaderboard to calculate. You probably can’t go as simple as like, “Who’s lifted the most,” because that’s not fair or even equitable.

TCO 134 | Peloton Commercial

Peloton Commercial: Tonal is the best strength training machine on the planet.


Another example of the leaderboard that we killed. Do we have streaks in our system where it’s like, “How long have you gone without missing a workout?” Every week your streak gets longer. If you’re going to miss out, you get that doomsday push notification on your phone, which says you’re about to lose your streak. People come back and work out, which is great. That’s what we want for them. We had a leaderboard where streak length was how you ranked on the leaderboard. The longest streak was further up. The only way to advance on that leaderboard is if you knock someone else off and you’re rooting against people. We’re killing that and we can’t have that. We’ve got to be rooting for each other here, not against each other.

You’d have people go into each other’s houses and taking them out so they can’t do their workout.

Turn off their notifications.

“I’ll buy you a two-week vacation to an island where there are no Tonals.”

Do you think that this is the only product that you guys are envisioning selling or do you have thoughts of other things?

When we think about adding new products to our product line or expanding our offering, it’s about the content. Right now, the Tonal piece of hardware we built is probably the most versatile piece of equipment ever created. It can do so much, way more than even any functional trainer because of the advanced weight modes we have and the fact that you can turn away on and off, which allows you to get into position for more movements. When we think about expanding our offering, it’s about more intelligence and having more content. The way we added yoga, the way we added these high-intensity conditioning types of workouts, that’s where we’ll be adding more stuff. Take the platform that we have and make it deliver more stuff. That’s how we think about that.

If somebody just got their Tonal. It’s day one, what’s your biggest piece of advice for them?

Download the mobile app and take the strength test because that’s how we figure out. When you create your account, we ask you for your goals. We ask you for some basics, the same thing as a personal trainer would ask you. We make you take a strength test. When you take that strength test, that’s what feeds that initial data into our weight recommendation engine. We can choose weights for you when you do all of your movements and then get into a program. Don’t be shy if two weeks later, you’re like, “I’m not digging their programs.” That’s totally cool.

We find that people who have the mobile app and are in a program, they’re the ones who work out most consistently. When you click that join program button, you’re making a commitment. This is a four-day a week program and it helps people stay on track. Get in the community. The communities are awesome. They’re filled with wonderful people. Those are all the things that I would say. Invite a friend over for a partner workout too. We were surprised at the uptake of that feature. We thought some people would dig it and it’s something people love, way more than we anticipated, which has been fun to watch.

I could see why because it allows you to workout together. Most people are not going to have two Tonals hanging on their wall, so that’s great to be able to do that workout together. I wouldn’t know what that’s like with my partner.

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your schedule to join us. This has been a lot of fun and very educational.

Thank you so much for having me. It’s always fun to tune in and I’m happy to be a guest.

Is there anywhere people should go and look for you on social media that you would like to be seen, followed, liked or whatever they do on the internet machine there?

They can find me on Twitter. I’m @AOrady. I’m on Instagram @AOrady. I’m also on Facebook. People know that I’m in the communities and they often tag me in posts, so they can find me on social media. I’m not that active. I’m not the person tweeting twelve times a day. People can follow me in case one day I start tweeting or spill the beans on an upcoming Black Friday sale or something. I don’t know how other CEOs do it where they’re tweet storming all day long. I have customers to take care of and employees to care for. It’s a full-time job.

What do you have in store for people next time?

We’re going to talk to Janet Barr. We get to hear all about her amazing cookies. She is still selling them. It’s @SweetTooth out on Instagram. You should check it out. There’s even a code on the JSS Tribe right now if you’re in the JSS Tribe.

Here’s what you need to know. We all know how poorly I eat. When I tell you a cookie is good, it’s good. That’s all you need to know. That’s what people have to look forward to. Until then, where can they find you?

People can find me at They can find me on Twitter, where I suddenly got active, Instagram, the Bike and the Tread @ClipOutCrystal.

You can find me on Twitter @RogerQBert or on Facebook at You can find the show online at While you’re there, like the page and join the group. While you’re in front of your internet delivery device, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter at Thanks for tuning in and until next time, keep pedaling.

Also, running.

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About Aly Orady

TCO 134 | Peloton CommercialBased in San Francisco, Aly Orady is a 20-year silicon valley veteran, engineer and serial entrepreneur. Aly started his career at Hewlett-Packard’s Computer Systems Laboratory designing super-computers, followed by technical leadership roles at a series of startups, including Kealia, Inc. (now Sun/Oracle).

Armed with an M.S.E.E. from Stanford, and a B.Eng. from McMaster University, Aly founded Pano Logic where he served as the company’s Chief Technology Officer and oversaw core technology development, architecture, and patents.

As Pano Logic’s founder, Aly also served on the board of directors and has filled a broad array of functional roles including product management, go-to-market planning, business development, and manufacturing operations. Aly’s technical expertise includes cloud, virtualization, enterprise management, networking, and computer architecture. In 2015, Aly went on to found Tonal, a stealth startup with an innovative approach the fitness. Stay tuned.

127: Peloton Sues Echelon and our Interview with Brandon Zachary

127: Peloton Sues Echelon and our Interview with Brandon Zachary

  • You’ve seen the ads for Echelon and wondered, “Isn’t that copyright infringement?” Well, Peloton has finally seen them too. And now they’re suing Echelon and we’ve got the details.  It is shocking how many Peloton features that Echelon is openly ripping off.  We also discuss another company Echelon is copying from.  
  • There’s been a new mini-Purge.   Which kind of class only has 7 rides left?  Find out here.
  • We pick another bingo square for week 6
  • We have an update on, of all things, the Today show’s monkey.  So, this is on me, not Tom. After I heard the story, I felt like you all needed to hear it.  AND to find out what happened to Fred J Muggs after so many years in the business!
  • Then NYC Marathon is almost upon us and Robin Arzon has a marathon simulation run for the Tread.  This is THE BEST run!  If you are anything like me, you will be pumped and ready to train for a marathon.  I mean, I was when I was doing the class.  Once I was done I remembered I still had like 22 miles to go.
  • Oliver Lee is doing a half-marathon this weekend in Long Beach.  He is going for a PR.  
  • We talk about the premiere episodes of Peloton’s new programs featuring Ally Love and Jess King.  Ally focuses on courage for her first Sunday virtue and Jess King debuts the milestone minute.  Jess also said there would be a surprise guest and big announcement during the next “episode”.  
  • Christine D’Ercole celebrates 5-years with Peloton.  Congrats to Christine!
  • Aditi Shah hosts Peloton’s first Signature Yoga series.  Starting on 10/17, there will be 15 minutes of high energy flow and followed immediately by 15 minutes of restorative yoga.  Aditi will be kicking off the first of 7 weeks!
  • John Foley will be at the Vanity Fair Summit. For a small fee of $6,500, you can be too!  There’s a very long list of other attendees that make up a fascinating list!

All this plus our interview with Brandon Zachary!

126: Peloton Debuts Two New Class Formats plus an interview with Jason Herman

126: Peloton Debuts Two New Class Formats plus an interview with Jason Herman

Jason standing in front of large display case of medals
  • It’s been one week since the IPO. How are things shaping up?  
  • Peloton debuts two new class formats. We discuss what that could mean for the future of Peloton.  Spoiler alert – Tom and I do not agree on this.  All reports so far are that the new class formats are really fun and the class goes by quickly.  The only way to get the badge is to take the class live on your bike.  Digital views do not count and neither do the on demand views.  Tom has a great theory on why the new class formats are rolling out.  
  • The music lawsuit asks for twice the damages.We will discuss if it actually will effect anything in the lawsuit itself and when we think this will be over.  
  • We select a new square in The Clip Out Challenge.  Find out here who or what we pick for week 5!
  • The Peloton Prophet is back with a new prediction. Or should we say…prophesying? A very surprising new instructor!  We also added a whole list of Prophet Predictions that have been made – so check it out and help us keep track.  
  • The fitness app Studio has an, ummm….interesting marketing campaign.  Why are Peloton owners annoyed by it?  What is OTHER connection the ad has to Peloton.  Newer members might be surprised by this!
  • Peloton gets mentioned on Saturday Night Live
  • There’s a new collection at the boutique benefiting breast cancer research.  10% of the proceeds go to research. Find out which item I am coveting!
  • The final Facebook Live spotlighting marathon training is just around the corner.  The NYC marathon is the finish line for this series.  Make sure to get any marathon training questions in for the last Facebook live.  
  • Peloton’s latest artist series features Pitbull.  You can ride or run with Pitbull. Find out the details here.  
  • JSS football rides and Alex’s Club Bangers rides are taking a brief break.  No worries – vacation of sorts for both instructors.  They aren’t going anywhere and neither are your favorite rides.  
  • mPaceline releases a new crowd sourcing feature.   

All this plus our interview with Jason Herman.

Be sure to listen – Jason has a unique passion that has left several listeners feeling emotional.  Its a good reminder of WHY you ride.  You might find yourself in love with the community and the bike in a totally different way after listening.  

125: The Peloton IPO is here! and our interview with Michelle Nyland

125: The Peloton IPO is here! and our interview with Michelle Nyland

  • The IPO launches and we have your breakdown of the day.  We’ll discuss the timeline of the day and what all the trading means.  
  • John Foley has a few revelations for us on CNBC’s Squawkbox.
  • Then Foley is back with thoughts on the first day of trading.
  • We pick another bingo square in The Clip Out Challenge.  You can watch the video to see it was.  We’re on week 4!  According to Kathy Earle, we now have a 0.08 chance to have 0/5 on your card.  We’re just glad she’s doing the math for us!
  • Peloton UK turns 1-year old.
  • New celebrity sighting – Ana Ortiz.
  • Matty Maggiacomo launches the first-ever Broadway run.  The class was 9/27/19 at 8am ET and it was 20 minutes.  Songs from Rent, Waitress, Dear Evan Hanson, Wicked and more!
  • New artist series featuring Bad Bunny.  Its a ride with Cody Rigsby on 10/1 at 730pm ET and it will be 30 min long.  No Bad Bunny is not a cartoon.  He’s a badass DJ.  I love that Peloton encourages me to try new music!
  • The Fall 30-Day Challenge is upon us.  Starting 10/1, you are hereby challenged to one activity a day for 30 days.  As long as you sign up through the bike or tread, you can use any platform to take a class!
  • Robin celebrated a birthday on 9/20.  (Tom also celebrated a birthday on 9/24)  
  • There’s a sale on yoga classes at the studio.  You can get unlimited yoga classes for 2 weeks!

Plus our interview with Michelle Nyland.

112: Power Zone Pack “Official” Status Revoked Plus An Interview With Richelle Martin

TCO 112 | Power Zone Pack


Following weeks of drama after the Power Zone Pack instituted a paywall, it was announced this week that they are no longer an “official” Peloton page. Crystal and Tom O’Keefe have details on what that means. They also have updates on the music licensing lawsuit and the scoop on Jennifer Jacobs’ final ride. What is more, they have Peloton member Richelle Martin over at the show to tell us her own Peloton journey. As a mom, Richelle has been struggling to have that alone time. But with Peloton, her road to being healthy has gotten a lot easier. She talks to us the ways Peloton has helped here reach her fitness goals, away from the prying and judging eyes of others and into a space of her own with people who matter and that support her. Listen in on this familiar conversation and allow it to speak to you in your own journey.

Listen to the podcast here:

Power Zone Pack “Official” Status Revoked Plus An Interview With Richelle Martin

What have we got in store?

We’re going to talk about the Power Zone Pack. We’re going to talk about JJ’s last class. There’s a new challenge out, a new legal step in the publisher lawsuit. We’re going to talk about a little award that one of the Peloton employees received. There’s going to be a new challenge coming up for the Tread as well and we have some instructor updates and our amazing interview with Richelle Martin.

We have a new review. This is from Melbeefl or Melbee Florida. Since it’s me, I’m hoping it’s about beef.

I have a feeling it’s Florida though.

Probably. They say, “More than a show about a Bike. I find myself looking forward to each week’s episode. It’s become a ritual of taking my dogs for a long walk on Fridays while listening to the witty banter between Crystal and Tom and catching up on all things Peloton. This isn’t just a show about riding the Bike. It’s truly about the community. I love how Crystal and Tom have guests that bring awareness to different issues that one might not always think about, such as how one can support research to end childhood cancer or how to help make Peloton and other websites/apps accessible to all abilities. Thanks for the excellent content and looking forward to what else you guys have in store for us audience.”

That was a kind review. Thank you. A lot of effort went into that.

If you would like to leave a review, Apple Podcasts is over there waiting for you. They don’t have to be long like that. Some people might be intimidated now.

That was a great review. There was like a sunshiny smile in my tummy.

Normally at the end of something like that, they hit you up for money. You could be like, “Five stars. Love it.” Don’t forget we’re available on You can go there and like the page and join the group and stay up-to-date on things. Breaking news, whatever the latest drama is. Hopefully on someone else’s page that we’re talking about, not within our ecosystem. There’s all of that. Let’s dig in.

That pesky Power Zone Pack. They should add a P for pesky.

It’d be the PPZP.

The PZPP. I like that better because at my age never missed an opportunity for PP. They are no longer an official Peloton page.

That has changed. For all of you hating, because we know you’re out there, you’re like, “Why are you talking about this? You want to drum up ratings.” We talked about it when they became official, so we’re going to go ahead and go full circle and talk about them when they became unofficial.

It was the headline of that week.

It was way back when.

When I think about it in sepia tones, like an old-timey newsreel.

Like one of those dream sequences. Peloton time runs strangely because everything’s in fast forward. There have been questions. We’re going to hit a few things. What changes? The big change is that Matt and Denis are no longer in the group. That’s a big thing. If they are making money off of the paywall that they included in their website, then it has nothing to do with Peloton. It’s a more clear line. Matt won’t be talking about it in the classes. From what I understand, that’s already started. That’s a big change. What has not changed? Censorship’s still rampant in the group. They are still asking people not to voice any concerns. If you have concerns, you should just PM people or get deleted, whichever.

That seems like a fair request to ask 30,000 people to send you a private message.

Also, another big concern that has come up is who is designing the challenge then because their big twist on this is nothing’s going to change. If nothing’s changing then who was designing the challenge?

They were never being designed by a Peloton instructor.

If you can read through all the BS that’s out there because there’s a lot. It seems like Matt basically said, “Do this many classes around about here.” Angie does every single ride. It’s all based on her TSS is what I’m told. That doesn’t matter because she fills in the classes. That’s the point. Matt says do X amount of these classes and then she goes through them because she knows the catalog and then she fills in what she thinks you should be doing. The only other concern I will throw out about that, I’ve also seen is that there have been injuries in some of these challenges. Don’t do a challenge if you don’t feel like it. Do not listen to anybody besides your body. If your body feels like I should not be doing this, then you should not be doing that. I don’t care what anybody tells you. Unless they are a doctor, do not listen to them.

In fact, it popped up in my feed that Matt was talking about a new Tread challenge.

It was a new treadmill program. It’s like the marathon program.

He even said in the comments like, “Do at least 4 to 6 six weeks of consistent running before you start a program like this. Don’t just jump into what I’m doing.”

You need to be able to do three miles easy.

That’s a good example. He’s a professional and he’s telling people, “This is challenging. You want to challenge yourself but also be cognizant of what your skill level is at. Don’t think you can jump into the deep end and be okay.”

For anybody out there who is a little disillusioned at this point from the whole Power Zone Pack or you need to refresh it, restart, I want to let you know that there is another group out there, the Peloton Data Junkies. They don’t actively go out to the OPP and recruit because they don’t need to. It’s like a small tight-knit community and a lot of these people were people who got kicked out of the PZP. There are people in there you may not have seen for years. The only reason I tell you that is to tell you that if you’re interested in still getting the high-quality knowledge of Power Zone training but you don’t want to deal with all this other stuff and you want options, there’s another option for you. Maybe you want to do both. That works too. Putting that out there, that it’s out there. It’s a group that they do challenges as well. They do challenges based on Power Zone training. They also incorporate other instructors. It seems to be a good mix of a lot of things, not just the same thing over and over again, which for me personally works a lot better. I need variety in workouts, Tom.

I was like, “Is that something about me? Do I need a fake mustache or a funny hat, a silly accent? What’s happening?” You can do those things too. Some people might have paid the $70 and now they’re like, “I thought it was official and now it’s not official. I was always confused. Now I know for sure.” It’s probably too late for the term terms and conditions, but just a thought. If you do feel like this isn’t what I thought it was, I would maybe give your credit card company a call. You can tell them, you try and explain to them like, “I thought it was official and now I find out that it’s not and I’d like to do a chargeback.” That’s a possibility. I’m not promising it will work. I don’t know. That depends on your credit card company and the vendor and whether they challenge or how they challenge. It’s an option if you feel upset about the change.

It’s definitely an option. I’ve heard of a lot of people getting their refunds back too. You might want to ask. The worst they can do is say no or not answer you in that. If they don’t answer you in a time frame that you find suitable, then maybe go the other route.

Surely they’ll answer you because they asked for people to private message them. In closing, when they made the announcement that they were no longer going to be official, they talked about how they had decided.

When you're a mom of a child, sometimes that time alone is priceless. Click To Tweet

It was best for Peloton to step down. They had a lot of input in that decision. They did say that. I don’t know that they did.

Behind the scenes, when we were kicked out of the group, we reached out to Peloton. It’s an official group and we were like, “Should we be concerned? We got kicked out of an official Peloton page and I feel like we get along.”

We let them decide what they wanted to do.

We were like, “Should we be concerned? Are we going to get kicked out of more official groups? Did we do something that upset you?” They were like, “Absolutely not.” They told us that it was fine and that we should go and rejoin the group. We were kicked out and banned and we couldn’t even see it when we searched for it. We were unbanned because we could see it again. No one would ever approve of our requests to rejoin the group.

From the outside looking in it, it appears more like what happened is Peloton thought that it would go a different way and that they could have a reasonable conversation and then then they didn’t so much.

I don’t know how to read that any other way because they told us, “Absolutely, rejoin the group. It’s not a problem. It was probably 2.5 weeks between that conversation and when they became unofficial. In that time frame, we were never approved to rejoin the group. If Peloton was in charge and things were going in the right direction, you think that they’d be like, “Absolutely. Let them back in.” Now we know not to rejoin.

Now that Matt is not there, there is no point.

The irony is I never joined it. They added me.

It’s funny. While you’ve been added, then you’ve been deleted.

It’s like prom all over again. Jennifer Jacobs had her last class. You don’t do challenges if you’ve got a weak back, no matter what other people try to pressure you into.

We’re not doctors. That’s why we’re telling you to be careful. It was a highly-attended class. It’s no surprise there. Over 4,000 people attended live. It’s not like after the fact. That was online.

It was on a weekday, and it was 8:00.

Friday at 8:00 AM Eastern.

A lot of people were at work. That’s a lot of people considering the time of day that they were doing that. They absolutely say Saturday at 11:00. I don’t want to say the way they were sabotaging.

No, but to gather the max amount of people, definitely. It was the HRI for JJ’s Crew as well. It worked out well because she got to spend a ton of time with those folks. I don’t know if you’re in the group, if you’re not in the group and you want to know all the details that have happened, then you should join that group. Now, it’s called The Crew, not JJ’s Crew. She had a lot of videos that they did because they hung out after the ride. There were lots of things that happened. There was a Top Gun because JJ is the instructor that did the Maverick ride. She was the ‘80s instructor. That was what she was known for. One of the people, they were in Air Force dressed in blues, except they were white. I don’t know if that’s accurate. There was singing by all the guys. They might’ve serenaded her and things like that. You don’t want to miss it because you can get a laugh out of it, if nothing else. She also gave a timeline for the fact that she is going to join the crew when she can. I don’t know what that means. She said that her official reason for leaving was that she did not feel like she was growing when she was teaching on Bike anymore. She always encourages people to keep growing, always go after things that are encouraging them to be their best. She didn’t feel like she was doing that.

You’re supposed to strengthen when you’re on the Bike.

It’s different growth, as emotional growth. She also highly endorses Peloton. She’s keeping her Peloton Bike. We’re not going to have a Steven Little situation where she sells it on eBay. She’s going to be writing. You will still see her on the leaderboard.

I thought I did something wrong. I was like, “You’re the Peloton expert, so talking about chicken tenders and the monkeys.” There’s a new challenge.

There is and this is a Peloton challenge and to be clear, it is on the tablet of your Tread or your Bike or you can still access classes digitally. To originally sign up, you have to have a Bike or have a Tread and go in and sign up. The reason I say that is because there are people who are digital members only and they can’t do the challenge because they can’t sign up. I want to be clear about that. All workouts do count, even the digital workouts.

Your starting point has to be a Bike or a Tread.

The goal is to go 30 full days working out every day. That includes even your meditations. Even a rest day, do a meditation. It will be okay. I don’t always manage to get that done. It’s easy for me to be like, “Just do it.” In theory, for real, it should be doable for most people.

We have a lawsuit update.

We do. I don’t even know what to say about this way.

It makes my head hurt. I don’t understand anymore. It’s like, “I’m suing you.” “No, I’m suing you.” “You can’t sue me because of this.” “You can’t unsue me because I did not do this other thing.” It’s all in Latin.

Let’s briefly recap the NMPA originally sued Peloton because they said that that Peloton was not paying all the licensing fees that they should pay. Peloton’s counter lawsuit to the NMPA, “You guys all colluded and stopped working with us when we wanted to try to negotiate pricing because we’re not going to pay for every single song for every single one of these artists. We want to pay on a per-song basis using. The NMPA said, “Judge, you should just dismiss the Peloton counter lawsuit. You can’t put collusion on us because we point to the Noerr-Pennington doctrine, which immunizes business against antitrust liability when filing good faith lawsuits against competitors.” What does that mean?

It means that they’re saying, “We filed the lawsuit collectively, but that’s not the same as collusion. We were defending ourselves as a group, but it’s not the same thing.” There is some precedent saying that that’s okay. I read an article in the Hollywood Reporter that apparently there’s something similar going on between the William Morris Agency or what’s now called William Morrison Entertainment and the Writers Guild. They’re having some issues about the usage of things that the writers created on streaming. William Morris wants them to do it. The Writers are like, “No.” There’s been a lot of back and forth and now a bunch of people left William Morris simultaneously. They’re going through the same thing over streaming rights, which I think is also a good thing to point out for people that are like, “How would Peloton know this clearly?” You have William Morris. They’re like the oldest talent agency in America and they pretty much invented that industry. They’re fighting with the Writers Guild about what the rights should be over usage and this new technology. There are a lot of people who don’t know. It’s a brave new frontier and they’re still making the rules and that’s the way it is with new technology.

Going back to what we said the last time we talked about this that we can’t get an expert on to talk about it because there are no experts. Nobody feels comfortable talking about it except for attorneys, which is freaky because it’s like, “They don’t know the technology. They got to learn as they go.”

They’ve been hired by people who say, “Go fight this for us.” They fight and then whatever the rules are, that’s what the rules will be. That’s what happened. We still aren’t entirely sure what it means, but we think that’s what it means.

It will be interesting to see. It’s hard for me to believe, any lawsuit, they’re going to be like, “Move to dismiss,” but I don’t think it’s going to happen.

That’s standard in anything, like your Ted Bundy and you’re like, “Motion to strike.”

I do not think it means anything.

TCO 112 | Power Zone Pack

Power Zone Pack: Peloton gives people the opportunity to work out and get healthy in our own private space.


That’s the way that it happens because maybe you’ll get lucky.

If you don’t ask, you’re definitely not getting it, so you’ve got to ask.

Business Insider released a new list.

They did. I love these little lists. It’s the 25 Most Innovative Chief Marketing Officers in the World.

I’m assuming Peloton is somewhere on that list.

Number twelve.

Carolyn Tisch Blodgett is the Senior Vice President of Brand Marketing and she was listed as number twelve. She has helped Peloton stand out in a crowded fitness landscape. We already know that because we are who she’s marketing to. It works. Carolyn, you did a good job. Specifically, the 2018 Winter Olympics campaign was noted. They broadcast live all those spin classes from Korea and that won them their first Effie award. What’s an Effie award? Do you know?

I don’t. What’s an Effie award?

Effie Worldwide is the know-all be-all for marketing and worldwide. They spotlight marketing ideas that work and encourage thoughtful dialogue among the drivers of marketing effectiveness. Since 1968, winning an Effie has been a global symbol of achievement.

There’s a second Tread challenge with Rebecca Kennedy.

It’s not with Rebecca Kennedy. It’s hosted in her Facebook fan group that’s called RK Solid. It’s hosted in that group because one of their members, Tammy Haber, is the one running it and she did this last one that I have been participating in. I gave up after about a few weeks because we went to Mexico and it went to hell after that. It’s a great challenge and I highly encourage anyone who is looking to increase their running endurance to do this or maybe you’re looking to increase your speed. This challenge is great for that. It’s a little bit different this time around because there’s not a hill section. Last time there was a hill section every other week. This time it’s an endurance run and you do three runs a week. One is the endurance of 45 minutes, the other two are 30 minutes each. One is a hit run and one is a tempo run. It’s simple. There are all kinds of other things you can do to get extra points, but those are the three basics.

Don’t embark on it if you’re leaving for Mexico soon. That’s our advice.

I can run easier and on a ship. There won’t be as many fruity drinks. That might be a helpful part.

There are lots of fruity drinks on a cruise.

There were no kids running around in Mexico. There will be kids on the cruise. I have to keep it in line a little bit.

We have to be parents on this one.

Not just float for hours in the pool.

Ben Alldis posted an interesting video to his Instagram account.

It was totally fascinating. It was the first time he ever tried Peloton. It’s hard not to read into this because it appears to be a glimpse at the Peloton recruiting process. It appears to be a nice hotel room, maybe a penthouse suite in LA with Peloton clothes around him in the background hanging up. I don’t know if that’s what happened, but it’s hard for my brain not to go there.

If that’s his first time and it’s captured on video, you would think that it was some official endeavor, especially given the setting you described.

It also appeared though that he was recording it all himself. This wasn’t like Peloton had people there recording it. This appeared to be for Instagram.

Did they let him?

Maybe he released it back then. I don’t know because I wasn’t following him back then. That’s a good question.

I’m surprised they let him take any video of that if it’s recruiting and he hasn’t signed on yet.

It’s trying to bike. I don’t know why they wouldn’t. It was fascinating though, regardless of whether or not you think I’m right or I’m wrong, it’s fine. It was neat to see and it was cool to see his excitement, his genuine love of riding the Bike for the first time. You should definitely check it out.

You learned a new skill courtesy of our intern.

It was amazing. I wanted to try something new for Instagram. I wanted to try taking audio and pairing it with a still image and I had no idea how to do that. He texted me through it, not picked up the phone and called me. That’s amazing.

When you see that fancy new stuff on Instagram, she did it herself.

Chet helped me. Thank you, Chet.

Teach a man to fish.

Everybody's weight struggles no matter what they are. Click To Tweet

Joining us is Richelle Martin. Richelle, how’s it going?

I’m great. How are you?

Do you get a lot of Seinfeld jokes? Wasn’t that the movie that they were always talking about? Rochelle, Rochelle, Girl’s Erotic Journey, I thought this is what it was called.

I never get your reference.

It was like their version of an art-house softcore dirty movie. It was Rochelle, Rochelle, a young girl’s erotic journey from Milan to Minsk. They referenced it repeatedly throughout the show.

It sounds like we’re going to have to Google that later.

That should be fine. It’s Seinfeld. It’s not like it’s dirty.

I never heard that one. That’s a new one.

I’ll take us back to Peloton. How did you originally find Peloton? How did you hear about it?

I heard about it for the first time when it was on Kickstarter. I love tech even though we’ve already established, I don’t use it well, little technical difficulties. I heard about it on Kickstarter and I begged hubby like, “Could we please do this?” It was not in the budget. It stayed in the back of my mind for a lot of years. In 2018 for Mother’s Day, right around that time, my husband got a bonus at work and there are probably 1,000 responsible things we should have done with that bonus. However, my husband is one of the sweetest people you’ll ever meet, and he said, “You’ve been talking about this long enough. Just get it.”

That’s a nice Mother’s Day gift. He does tech support and he gets you surprises for Mother’s Day. He’s a keeper.

He is for many years. I’ll stick with him.

In a row?

You had your Pelo-versary then.

I did, May 10th, 2018. That’s when I got it.

What was your fitness level when you found the Peloton and started using it?

That’s a long story that I won’t bore you all with. It’s important to know my history because I think a lot of the things that we’ll talk about deal with it. I grew up overweight my whole life. I remember as an eighteen-year-old joining Weight Watchers for the first time, being over 200 pounds. That was all I knew. My weight history, I’ve never known healthy. I’ve never known thin. I’ve been overweight my whole life. I’ll go through little spurts where I’ll lose some weight, but somehow or another, I always gain it back. It’s the cycle that I’ve always gone through. Eventually, I got into running for the first time in my life and I love to go out and run and clear my head and be alone. When you’re a mom of a child, sometimes that time alone is priceless. My runs might’ve gone a little longer than they should have some time just to be out of the house, have that quiet time. I got into running and I ran a lot of 5Ks and 10Ks and I even ran a half marathon. I was the healthiest I’ve ever been in my adult life. I had gotten down to 205, which truly was the lowest I’ve ever been to.

When I was training for my half marathon, I developed plantar fasciitis in both feet, ironically. It defeated me and I quit everything. I was in pain and I went through all kinds of surgery and everything to try to fix it. I gave up and I quit everything. Over the course of a few years, I ended up gaining 140 pounds, which people in my tribe who know me or who are following my journey, they know that I started Peloton at 346 pounds. I’m open about that because I feel people can benefit from knowing that there are others out there who struggle the same battles that they go through every day. That’s where I started Peloton. My fitness level leading up to Peloton was 346 pounds on day one.

That takes a lot of a lot of gusto to be like, “I’m going to hop on this Bike and I’m going to work out,” because it is intimidating. I have not struggled with weight the way you have, but I have struggled with my own weight issues and I say that to mean I don’t know exactly what you’re going through or what you’ve been through. I know that it’s hard to try something new whenever you feel like people are going to judge you because you’re not the same as them.

I’ve learned through my journey that everybody’s weight struggles no matter what they are. You could want to lose that last three pounds. To me, it’s the same journey as myself trying to lose 200 pounds. I used to spin years ago. It’s the same story you’ve heard from a lot of people. You have to get there early to get on a Bike in a live class like that. I didn’t enjoy it. You’d miss out sometimes and it’s frustrating that you’ve got all ready to go up there not to get a spot. When you’re my size or anybody who struggles with weight issues of any self-esteem issues or whatever, working out in a public space is overwhelming. Especially at my size, people aren’t nice and unfortunately that’s the sad truth. For me to work out in a public area, I didn’t enjoy it. That’s why I think why Peloton spoke to me because it gives people like me the opportunity to work out and get healthy in our own private space. I’m grateful for Peloton for creating a product that speaks to people like me.

It’s another one of those unintended consequences. It can benefit people in so many different ways. It was this idea they came up with. It’s a safe time, but it does many things for many people.

That has to be intimidating walking into a gym where you’re surrounded by gym rats. I’m sure there are d-bags that aren’t being nice to you there, but I would also bet that there are probably a lot of people that are fine or are indifferent to you but you already feel on edge. There’s probably some projection going on as well, not to say it’s not occurring, but that you’re like sunburn waiting for that next light tap to set you off.

I’m sure a lot of it is internalized. You already are self-conscious about yourself to be in that environment and you think everybody’s looking at you. I’ll tell you, you know at 346 pounds and losing, there is also the d-bags.

You would think that people who are bettering themselves.

It’d be like, “Welcome. Good for you. Come on in.”

You would think so. I don’t say that most people are that way. Most people are supportive and positive. There are the occasional ones that do say mean things, look at you or whatever it is. I had somebody in our community call me a sack of lard and it’s like, “I don’t even know you, first of all, but how about great job or way to work on yourself?” Be supportive of people. I’ll never understand anybody who is rude or disrespectful or unkind to somebody who’s showing up every day and putting in the effort. It makes no sense to me.

You said that they were in your community.

She means the Peloton community.

I thought you meant the specific page that you’re a part of.

It was somebody in the Peloton community who saw an Instagram post from an instructor, ironically. They kindly responded that I was a sack of lard and I’m like, “If that makes your day to put me down then, whatever.” I find if you give into them and fight with them, it makes the situation worse and they win anyway. I won’t get into it with them.

I’m sure that’s smarter.

TCO 112 | Power Zone Pack

Power Zone Pack: It makes no sense that anybody is rude or disrespectful or unkind to somebody who’s showing up every day and putting in the effort.


Probably better for your mental health long-term, but it’s also hard not to be like, “MF-er.”

Richelle, can you tell us about the XXL Tribe and how that came to be?

It’s the joy of my life. Phillip Powell, you know him on the leader board as Catchpow, which is a running joke that none of us can Catchpow. The funny story is he completed his Century ride and he ordered his Century shirt in the largest size that came in, which was a 2x, which he was a 2x at that time. He didn’t think that it wasn’t going to fit, but he got it and it didn’t fit. He was upset. He had earned this and he couldn’t wear it. He was frustrated. He’s like, “I’m going to create a group where people like this have somebody to connect with and have somebody to make them feel like they belong to something, like they’re a part of something, or people who understand what they’re feeling. Literally that day, he went on and he created the XXL Tribe. Shortly after, he asked me if I would run it with him, which I was grateful. Truly it has been one of the most amazing things that have ever happened in my life, but it all came about from a Century shirt that didn’t fit. That’s the beginning of it. December 2017 is when we kicked off.

That has to be nice for people to have space within the world of Peloton that feels a little safer. The OPP can be ugly for anyone for any reason. Like, “You’re left-handed, you freak.”

It does feel like that sometimes in there for sure. I was telling Crystal when we spoke previously, “People in my group, not only do they have the fitting into the Peloton community, but when you’re overweight or plus-sized or whatever, there’s that extra step. You almost have to work a little bit harder to prove yourself.” It’s giving everybody a safe space. That’s what we always talk about in our tribe. It’s a safe space where there’s no judgment at all and people can talk about issues that they’re having or things that relate to weight loss or struggles that they have of being overweight in the Peloton community. It gives them a place to belong with people who understand what they’re going through. We have many members, not just who are looking to lose weight but people who are looking to get overall health or even maintain their current weight. Maybe they were overweight and now they’re trying to maintain. We joke that we’re not XXL. We are extra, extra love because truly that’s what we are is we accept anybody who needs a place to belong and wants people, not the OPP. We want people who won’t scream at them for asking a question.

I think about that sometimes because I don’t go to the OPP all that often, but it pops up in my feed. There are a lot of before and after pictures there. I think that sometimes of the before and after pictures are fun. There’s also the during pictures that you’ve made a lot of progress but maybe you’re not there yet. That has to be frustrating when you’re on the curvier end of the bell curve that maybe lost 100 pounds. If you put that into someplace like the OPP, you’re going to hear not good enough, not, “Look how far you’ve come.”

I choose to believe that the OPP is mostly positive. There have been several instances that have shown me the positivity of people in that group, but there are certainly the ones that will bring you down and will make you second guess anything you ask, say or share on there. I get it.

Speaking of all the horror stories on the OPP. Honestly, I didn’t know of you, Richelle, until this whole thing happened. There was a comment apparently that was made on the OPP, and I don’t even remember what it was. I know it was rude. You spoke up about it and you caught my attention in a powerful way. I was like, “Who is this lady? I like her.”

They call me mama bear in our tribe. The joke here is I am the nicest person you’ll ever meet. I’ll go out of my way for anybody. I love celebrating people, but you talk crap about my people and I will gut you. I have no problems. I am not afraid of you. I will call you out on your BS. What happened was somebody brought it to my attention. I didn’t see it. They sent me a private message of a comment that somebody had made. They were talking about the XXL Tribe and somebody made a comment and said, “Is that a group for fatties?” Any other day it’s like whatever, people are stupid and you move on. Maybe I had a hair up my ass that day or I was having a bad day.

Who knows? My husband probably thinks I had PMS, I don’t know, but it hit me the wrong way. I always believe that people say things that are stupid that they might regret. Before doing anything or saying anything, I reached out to the person privately. I said, “This was brought to my attention. Some people were upset about it and the person that was with me was offended. We have a whole group of people who work hard to make themselves better, to get healthy and to see something like this, it’s like a slap in the face.” She was unkind and basically told me that we were fatties and suck it up.

I remember when I messaged her, you have to go to their profile to send them a message. I happened to see her picture of her two little girls and I said, “What would you do if your two little girls had a weight issue later in life? You want to be supportive.” Her response was, “I would never allow that to happen to my girls.” That was the nail in the coffin for me. I get it. We’re not going anywhere with this conversation. I blocked out her name and I blocked out her photo so nobody knew who it was. It wasn’t my job to call her out or to make people upset with her. I posted it in the OPP.

I don’t remember, it’s been a long time now, but something like, “This mentality is unacceptable.” We have a whole group of 5,000 people in the XXL Tribe who show up every day. You have no idea how hard the people in this group work. I get to see it every day, their successes, their rides, everything they’re doing. These are incredible people. For somebody to shame them like that, it rubbed me in such the wrong way. I put this long rant. It was positive. I don’t think I said anything negative. It’s still up. Feel free to search for it. Telling people like, “This mentality, we can’t be like this. We have to support each other. That’s what this community is all about.” I expected there to be some backlash. It was the OPP.

Surprisingly, I think it got over 1,000 or something comments. I read every one because I wanted to hear from every member who had something to say about it. Every single comment was positive, which was a turning point for me because it helped me realize, “People do support this. This one loser who commented this, that’s the anomaly.” Overall it helped our tribes so much. It put out a message to everybody. We got many new members because of it. We added 1,000 members that weekend. It was the first time that people publicly say, “There’s a group out there for people like me.”

It brought many people to our tribe and our family grew from that. I’m thankful it happened because everything positive in the world came from that post. It was the posts that shook the world or the Peloton world, for our XXL world for sure. If nothing else, because of that post, you guys talked about it on your show when it happened and somebody told me about it. It was the first time I’d heard of you all. I went and listened to the episode and Crystal, I think I reached out to you and said thank you for supporting us. It for sure brought out that that I found you guys and I was able to share you with the tribe as well. There is lots of positivity from it.

Thank God I said something nice.

You all are the nicest people ever. You all would never say anything.

We would not. That is true.

That’s about it though. Tom, I remember you. You were upset about it.

It’s a big steaming pile of BS. First off, where people are with their weight ultimately is none of their business. Beyond that, if you’re going to be a judgmental d-bag like that, you should give the people who spent money on an exercise bike, you should cut them a little slack. They’re theoretically going down the road that you think they should. Not that it’s any of your business or you should have a voice in that. If you’re going to be judgmental like that, here’s a group of people who are theoretically doing the right thing in your worldview. To crap on that, what’s your end game? When she was talking about daughters, all I could think is like, “They might not have problems with being overweight, but that’s where eating disorders come from.” It’s that mentality and pressure. Is your love for your child tied to their weight? Are you kidding me? I get you to want your kids to be healthy and you want to do your best to teach them to have a proper relationship with food. I totally understand that, but to be like, “My kids are too good to be that.”

Once they become teenagers and have minds of their own, they’re going to go through their crap. Who knows what that’s going to be?

You’re going to lose control of this at some point. I would hope that as a parent, you would support your child no matter what. I digress.

Digressing is what we do.

Speaking of positivity that this whole situation brings, didn’t this link over to the Miami Fitwear, the leggings and getting expanded sizes added as well?

That was funny how it all happened. It was this random. Christine D’Ercole has her clothing line not through Peloton. She had worked with Miami Fitwear to design a legging with all of her quotes that she was selling through her website. I remember they posted not her Peloton Facebook page, but her brand Facebook page. I thought, “Those are cute.” I love Christine. I remember I went to her site and I wanted to get a pair and they were only available up to extra-large. It was an honest comment and I was like, “I wish these went a size higher because I’d love a pair.”

I thought that was the end of that. About a day later, I was connected with Raquel, who is the owner of Miami Fitwear who let me know, “I’m working already with Christine to expand for her to 1x and 2x. I thought, “That’s amazing that Christine is already working on this. Full disclosure, I’m a 4x.” I was like, “That’s awesome. I’m excited she’s doing that, but it still doesn’t help me.” Not that I was there for selfish reasons, but I wanted a pair of leggings.” I ended up talking to Raquel through Messenger for a while. She said, “Why don’t you work with me and help me develop 3X and 4X and we’ll take them.”

At the time, I think we were talking about Christine’s leggings. I sent her a pair. When you’ve gone through the weight battles that I have, you have lots of sizes available in your closet. I went and found a pair of 3x and a pair of 4x leggings that I had that was from a store. They were plain black, which when you’re plus sizes, what you find is you don’t get cute clothes, you get boring clothes. All the workout gear that I had was plain black cotton pants, nothing fun or exciting. I pulled those and I sent them to her and she reverse engineered from what I sent her and made templates of her leggings in the same size.

She mailed me back some templates to try on. We went back and forth a few times until we got them right. She extended her entire collection, not just Christine’s, but everything on her website all the way up to 4x. It was a lot of fun, a lot of hard work. It took all in a couple of months for us to do that. For her to be willing to be size-inclusive and want to cater to the larger clientele, my whole tribe, we were thankful to have that option. When you’re our size, the options are limited and her leggings are adorable. We wanted to be included more than anything. It was a lot of fun.

I was wondering when you said she had your help. I was almost like, “What’s the help?” It’s seems self-explanatory. Did you get any feedback? Did they sell a lot of them?

Initially, it was her Miami Fitwear collection directly through her and it’s probably a lot of XXL people at this point because the word is now out. She says they’re doing well. She said it was such a good expansion of her business. I’m glad that Christine and I were able to participate in that for her business, which is amazing.

Isn’t she also a Peloton rider?

She is.

You can't out-exercise a bad diet. Click To Tweet

Can you say her last name for me so I don’t mess it up?

It’s Ponce, Raquel Ponce.

The best part of all this is it sounds like you’ve got some free leggings.

I did get one.

I would argue the best part is that you now have a pair of Peloton Miami Fitwear leggings that are in your size. That’s the first time.

Probably in my lifetime, this is probably outside of my birthing a child and getting married, one of the most exciting things that have ever happened to me. It’s such a fun story. After Raquel and I worked together on her Miami Fitwear line, I had this idea. I’m a person of action, I like to do stuff. I’m lying in bed one night and I literally have this idea, “If I can help Raquel with her line expand to plus sizes, I need to go bigger.” My first thought is Peloton. I need the plus sizes in the Peloton Boutique. I shared my idea with some people and they were like, “No, you’re stupid.” It was kind, but apparently, a lot of people have been asking the Peloton Boutique to stock. I’m relatively new to the Peloton world. I had heard, “No, we tried this forever. It’s not worth it.” I’m like, “What’s the harm in trying?” I’m a person of action. I’m going to take some action. I put some feelers out in the world and I messaged a couple of people that I thought could help and I posted a couple of times saying, “Does anybody have contact with the Peloton Boutique?”

I tried emailing their customer service, which didn’t get me anywhere. Surprisingly, someone who I never thought would have been able to be that connection reached out to me personally and said, “There’s something I can do. Let me make some calls and see what I can put together.” Within about a week, I had a meeting scheduled with the director of the Peloton Boutique. It was crazy. Little old me, I nervously went to this meeting and met with the woman and pleaded our case, pleaded the members of the XXL and why having plus size in the boutique would be important to us. That they sell a product that speaks to people who are overweight and like to work out in the privacy of their own home. We want to be included in the clothing part of it too.

Many of us, we’ve never worn Peloton-branded anything. For myself, I’ve never worn my Century shirt. It doesn’t fit. I ordered it and 2x is the biggest they come. I probably have to wait a year to fit in. I think for us, to be included as part of the community was important. I talked to her about that and gave her some statistics. I invited Raquel to the meeting with me as like, “Here’s somebody you can work with that already has a brand that includes up to 4x. You could partner with this and have a product in the boutique that would include everybody.” I hung up and they continued to talk and here we are. They officially released the first Peloton-branded plus-sized clothing.

It’s crazy. It’s this $4 billion company and they have no reason to listen to one person who is crying their story. They did and they listened. They heard and took action and did something about it. That speaks highly of our company. I’m floored. I take all the credit, 100% of the credit for the boutique now offering plus sizes. Because Raquel was there and she’s local and was able to manufacture them fast, those were able to roll out fast. What I found out through this meeting is it takes months to put together a boutique collection.

They order them, they ship them, they do photoshoots and marketing. Usually whatever they’re stocking in the boutique, a few months from now is what they’re working on now. We were told while they could do this collaboration with Miami Fitwear, the spring collection that was released, the summer collection that was released, they had already done all the marketing for those so they could not go back and add plus sizes to those. They did let us know that starting in the fall, they are going to be working with vendors who stopped plus sizes.

Do you know if they’ll have plus-size models too?

That’s a great question that a lot of the people in my tribe had been asking. I don’t think so is my honest answer. They like to use the instructors as models.

They have their own models that they use and they also like to use the instructor. Who knows what they’ll add to that because they still want everything to look a certain way. They do that with their TV ads and things too. I don’t have a strong feeling on this one way or another.

I don’t either. The brands that they’re working with, they’re not going to be exclusively plus sizes. They’re going to carry all sizes. There will be, if you know from extra small all the way to XX, 4x whatever they go with. I don’t mind seeing a model in a smaller whatever. I fight one battle at a time, I guess.

You should. I feel let’s all focus on, it happened and you’re excited about it. Sometimes I get a little down whenever Peloton releases anything. Somebody would be like, “Why didn’t you do this? Why didn’t you do that?” I’m like, “Can’t we be happy about this?”

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from leading a group of 5,000 people, it’s you will never satisfy everyone. Somebody is always going to question, “Why not this? How about this?” You have to do it and you’re going not to please everybody and move on.

I think that I read that the Miami Fitwear leggings that were sold in the Peloton Boutique, those sold out quickly.

They did. We had an active watching party. It was funny in the tribe watching. Because we wanted to see, this was an in-your-face for us. The director that I met with, she made a comment. She said, “The reason we’ve never stocked true plus size is because they don’t sell.” I think we were nervous that they weren’t going to sell and it was going to prove her point. We were refreshing all weekend long to see how they did. They went live Friday afternoon. I might have my days wrong, but I think they went live at 4:00 PM and by 6:00 PM already 1x and 2x had sold out. It was funny that it was the plus sizes that sold out first. Over the course of 48 hours, her entire collection sold out all the way up to 4x.

It makes sense because if people have been waiting and you finally have it, there’s not going to be any of this like, “It’s a little purpler than I was hoping for.” It’s going to be, “I’ll buy two because when am I going to find more?”

I think they were excited to be included finally. It was one more step to make these people feel like they belong to this community. I told you everybody feels like they have to work a little bit harder. It brought them one step closer to feeling like they are part of this community.

That’s such an excellent point. I saw another post of yours in the middle of talking about all of this. You were saying that you had never been able to use your referral codes on Peloton clothes. She said, “Peloton sucks this whole time.”

Early on, I got two credits probably within my first month and I was excited. You have free money to spend at the boutique. I went there and literally there was nothing I could buy except for socks and a coffee mug. That was all they had. Everything else was clothing that did not stock my sizes. I have to spend them, they expire. I bought a coffee mug and probably, embarrassed to say, fourteen pairs of socks. It is true, there is the possibility of having way too many Peloton socks. We are overrun with Peloton socks. We’ll never run out, but when that’s all you can buy, what do you do?

Would it be the ultimate irony if they sold out of all the plus size leggings but they didn’t make any money because it was all backed up referral codes?

I would be curious to see the numbers on that because you’re absolutely right. We have many members that have never been able to spend their codes that finally were probably able to.

“We sold out and we lost $8,000. What happened?”

I’m kicking myself now because after the two initial credits that I got, the plethora of socks, I stopped spending my referral credits because I didn’t need more socks. I started giving away to people in the tribe. We will do challenges or find little motivation things and I’ll give them away as prizes to people in the tribe. Now they’re releasing these and I’m like, “Darn it. I know I need those credits.” I’m happy that everybody was able to get something from the boutique finally.

I will say on the upside, your sock puppet YouTube channel is amazing.

I have socks for a lifetime.

You’ve had the Peloton. How is your weight loss journey going?

I saw this and I’m like, “I’m not asking you this one.”

I can tell you weren’t going to ask that question. I didn’t even have to look at you.

TCO 112 | Power Zone Pack

Power Zone Pack: If there’s one thing to learn from leading a group of 5,000 people, it’s you will never satisfy everyone.


One thing about me and everybody at my tribe will tell you, I am open about my journey for a specific purpose. I feel if people feel like they can relate to me, if they feel they can get something from my story or you have somebody who’s going through what they’re going through, if that motivates them in their journey, then I’m doing my job as a leader of the tribe. I’m open about my journey and I admittedly am as human as everybody else going through this. I’m not the person who’s gone through it and I’m at the end and I’m telling you what you should do. I’m going through this with you all. I started on May 10th, 2018 at 346. I did well. At first, I lost about 25 pounds off the bat.

Food is obviously a big deal for me and everybody always says you can’t out-exercise a bad diet. I don’t eat bad, but I’ll take two steps forward, one step back. It’s the struggle of anybody who is overweight. It’s a long journey. It’s hard to see that in. It’s hard to stay motivated for 3 or 4 years or however long this is going to take. I sit now at about 22 pounds lost. It should have been more had my food been on point, but that’s life. I always tell the people in my tribe, “I measure success by your willingness to continue to get back up. The second you quit is when you know you fail.” I get back up every day and if I take one step back, then I get back up and I take two more steps forward.

That’s hard to do. I haven’t struggled with the weight loss numbers that you have, but I struggle. We were in Mexico and I was like, “I want to be good because I want to hit my goal weight this summer,” and I was good for about 24 hours.

We all go through this in some form or fashion. That’s life. I feel I’m going through this and I keep working and I show up every day and if I have 2 or 3 bad days, then on day four, I get back up and I start back at it and I’ll get there. It’s going to take some time. For the first time in my life, I enjoy working out. When I was running was the only other time that I truly enjoyed what I was doing. I hate working out normally. It’s not fun for me. It’s boring and it’s hard. I enjoy this. I enjoy getting on the Bike. I enjoy seeing the other Tribe members.

I enjoy the leaderboard and the instructors. I enjoy everything about it. I plan on continuing to get on every day and eventually I’ll get there. I think accountability is a lot of it. That’s where I struggle. I don’t have anybody to be accountable to. My husband could care less where I’m at. He’s wonderful in that he doesn’t care if I’m 140 pounds or 340 pounds. He couldn’t care less. At the same time, it’s like, “I need you to hold me accountable. It doesn’t help when you come in and say, ‘Let’s go out to dinner.’” I’m like, “Okay, let’s go.”

You start the day and you go, “Every year I wake up and I go here, I’m still here. I’m still overweight. I’m still fighting this battle and still going down this journey.” I told you I’m a person of action. I’ve got to do something about it. I told my tribe that I’m going to start doing live video weigh-ins and they’re going to hold me to it and they’re going to make me do it. In our tribe and on my Instagram, I’m videoing my weigh-in. If you want to give me some accountability, tell me I have to weigh in front of people. I did the first one. It was fun. Everybody already knows what I weigh anyway, so it’s not like it was a big surprise, but I told everybody I’m going to live weigh-in on the last Friday of every month. I’ll be sure as I get to the last Friday of the month. I’m going to be working hard because I don’t want to show up on that scale and have gained or whatever. It’s holding myself accountable will help.

Regardless of what the scale might say, riding the Bike has to make you healthier.

That’s for sure. My doctor, she always jokes that I’m the healthiest overweight person. She knows my blood pressure is great, my cholesterol is great, and everything is wonderful. This has done much for my endurance. I can keep up. I have an eleven-year-old, so being able to keep up with him and do all that, this has helped much and my energy level for sure. I have noticed differences, not weight-related.

It sounds like you must’ve found a great doctor. I know that a lot of people that are overweight complain about their doctors. Obviously, a doctor is going to tell you should be at a lower weight, but that they tend to blame any complaint you have on your weight. You can come in with a cold and they’re like, “If you weighed 100 pounds less.” People are like, “What are you talking about?” It’s nice that you found a doctor who will acknowledge that maybe your weight is not where we’d like it to be, but you are getting healthier.

She’s wonderful. I’ve been with her for a lot of years. I’m grateful to her. She’s very much a, “You need to lose weight.” We know that and we’re working on it. Let’s look at all the other things in your life that are healthy and on track. She’s supportive and wonderful. She’s a blessing.

You said, in general, people are nice to you on the OPP. Would you say the community from the Peloton community in general? You have two distinct ends of it. The XXL Tribe was amazing. Excluding them, the rest of the community, have they been good to you besides the jerk on OPP?

They have. Surprisingly, there is much support in the OPP. I know so much negativity is talked about it, but it is a truly supportive place. I got in the habit of every month or 2 or 3 posting a little update on how I was doing. It sounds vain and I hate that, but it seems like people are invested and want to know how I’m doing. Every time I post one of those updates, the outpouring of support is incredible and it’s humbling that there are many kind people in the world. They’ve been wonderful, the members. They’re positive and supportive, even the instructors. Christine is one of the top ones. If you ever take a Christine ride, more than likely you’re going to hear her shout-out the XXL Tribe.

She shows us much love and makes the members feel like they are seen and part of the community and she works hard to make us feel like we belong. Matty is another one. He’s wonderful. He reached out to me a while back when he did the shared run to let me know, “When I was designing the shared run, I wanted to focus on inclusivity and to make sure that anybody could do it. If you take the shared run, which you need to, it’s wonderful.” You’ll hear him. He gives call outs both for the run and for a modified walking. For the instructors to embrace our community, not just XXL but sick people, injured people or elderly, anybody who might need that little modification for them to care enough to include that in their program, we’re thankful to them. The instructors have been wonderful to make us feel like we belong.

Do you have any advice for people that are getting their Bike?

Where do I start? For me, the XXL Tribe has changed my entire outlook on exercise and Peloton. I would say find a group, whoever, wherever. It doesn’t have to be on Facebook. It can be with your friends or whoever. Find a group that is a niche to your lifestyle or whatever and connect with that group. Having that small group of people to ride with and be accountable to, it’s priceless. The OPP is overwhelming. There are many people there. It’s hard to connect with people. I think once you get in with a group, it changes everything. It makes you feel like you’re part of a family. I would say find a group.

What is your leaderboard name?

I am not creative in the least. My leaderboard name, I took a bunch of things I liked and put them together. My leaderboard name is PeloBeachMama. Pelo obviously because I love my Peloton. Who doesn’t? Beach because that’s where I live. That’s my happy place. You want me to calm down and relax, put me in a beach chair. Mama, because my son, all I ever wanted to be was a mom. I was told that I couldn’t have children. My son is my miracle baby. Being a mom is the greatest joy of my life.

I know we’ve talked about your tribe, but how can people find you on the internet if you would like to be found?

The tribe, come find me there. You’ll see me multiple times a day. Occasionally, in the OPP. Send me a message, Richelle Martin. Instagram is where I do all of my Peloton stuff. I don’t do it on my Facebook. It’s @PeloBeachMama on Instagram and PeloBeachMama on the Bike.

I want to come full circle. It was Rochelle, Rochelle. It felt like a weird thing to throw, but so people don’t send us a million messages. This will be a good test to see who reads all the way to the end. Anyone that messages us saying, “Rochelle, Rochelle,” we’re going to be like, “You don’t read all the way to the end, busted.”

I’m still not going to Google it.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy day.

Where would I rather be? You all are awesome.

Thank you for all that you’ve done for the Peloton community. Thank you for being just such a bright light. It’s a joy.

Thank you.

Does Richelle have a recipe for us?

She does. Would you like to hear about it?

It’s probably not going to be anything I like.

It isn’t, but it is a great snack. I like this option because this fits in well with the macros that I have been eating. You could do this for breakfast too, by the way. Richelle mentioned that she said it’s her favorite go-to snack or even good for breakfast. She has six ounces of 0% plain Greek yogurt. She usually buys an individual cup. A scoop of vanilla protein powder and then two tablespoons of peanut butter. She uses natural because it makes her feel better about her life decisions. I love Richelle. You mix everything together well. The protein powder gets mixed in and enjoy. She likes it because it tastes like a peanut butter mousse. It’s good.

If you buy natural peanut butter, all the proceeds go to the estate of George Washington Carver. It’s not true. That’s some BS I’ve made up. What pray tell do you have in store for people next time?

Measure success by your willingness to continue to get back up. The second you quit is when you know you fail. Click To Tweet

Next time, we have Peter Gaan. He is a member of Mileage Maniacs and he has also paced mania Pelo. He’s an all-around nice guy. It’s going to be great to hear his weight loss story, how he found Peloton, his entire journey.

I guess that’s what people have to look forward to. Where can they find you?

People can find me at If they can find me on Instagram, Twitter, Tread, the Bike @ClipOutCrystal.

You can find me on Twitter @RogerQBert and on If you want to find the show online, please do so. We’re available on Like the page and join the group. Find us on Apple Podcasts and rate, review and most importantly, subscribe.

Important Links:

108: Power Zone Pack Paywall Discussion And An Interview With Paul And Debbie Erickson

TCO 108 | Power Zone Paywall


This week, the Power Zone Pack introduced a paywall to their website and people have lots questions. Crystal and Tom O’Keefe do their best to figure out the details. They also bring in Peloton riders, Paul and Debbie Erickson, for the long-awaited interview about their Peloton story. Like many of us, Paul and Debbie came across Peloton as a way to sustain their health and fitness far from the outside factors that hinder them. They share the great things they discovered along the way in their Peloton journey, how it helps with their races, and how the community completes the entire experience.

Listen to the podcast here:

Power Zone Pack Paywall Discussion And An Interview With Paul And Debbie Erickson

What do you have in store for people? I know they’re dying to know.

We have some instructor news. We have a whole lot of drama and our amazing long-awaited interview with Paul and Debbie Erickson. That’s about it. It sounds short, but I don’t think it’s going to be.

Shameless plugs, don’t forget we’re available on Apple Podcasts where you can rate, review and subscribe. Before we get into the drama, we should probably tackle some of our own. We had a review. I don’t normally read the reviews. I read them in chronological order. Some people might’ve figured that out by now and I slowly go up the line. We typically skipped the negative ones because we’re like, “Some people don’t like us, whatever. That’s fine.” It seems weird to read those, but they exist. This one had some weird accusations so we thought we would tackle that. This is from Ari0123. It says, “I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was so off with this podcast. It was more than the bad jokes and the rumors that the cohost/husband doesn’t ride and makes fun of riders.” First of all, let me address your rumors. Yes, I don’t.

It’s not a rumor. We’ve been very upfront with that. I feel like this person doesn’t even listen.

If I say I don’t ride the bike, that’s not a rumor. If I were making fun of riders, first off, people would have punched me in the face when I went to homecoming, HRI or walked into the store. Plus, I’m married to a rider.

We wouldn’t do this podcast if you thought that it was dumb for all of us to be exercising.

It’s not for you, but you don’t care. I look at it like eating vegetables. I wish I ate vegetables, but I can’t get them down. I know that the people who eat vegetables are doing better than me. Honestly up to that, we would have ignored it. The next part that we wanted to address. “This is 100% an act,” meaning you and me. “Crystal and her clique have been leading the mob of angry people who say hurtful things about Brad.”

I do?

Apparently, you’ve been doing this all behind my back but since he’s made the news and she realized he isn’t going anywhere, she’s decided to become his bestie.

Brad and I aren’t besties. Brad is fine. I never claimed he was my bestie.

I was like, “It’s weird that they put the word “become.” She’s decided to “become” his bestie. You would think if you’re going to put air quotes in something, you put it around bestie or the whole phrase. Technically they’re not air quotes because they are typing in rumor, so maybe quotes. Anyway, I don’t care whether you like or have an irrational hatred for the guy. However, it’s 100% disgusting to see someone go from spewing/leading others to spew hate to pretend they’re besties with no apology. She’s even scrubbed The Clip Out post she made attacking him after he was highlighted on the news. The post he’s talking about is The Wall Street Journal post where you wrote.

I said, “I am surprised that The Wall Street Journal treated this as a serious news topic,” which I still am.

First off, that post is still there. You’ve got to scroll because it’s Facebook. That post is still there and you’re not the only person who felt that way. Do you know who else felt that way? Brad felt that way.

Brad was surprised. He was the front page. It’s about me. He was as shocked as I was. That’s not Brad’s fault. They chose it. I don’t know why they chose it. I’m still surprised.

He told us that they put it online and it got enough traction that they were like, “I guess this does rate front page.”

It was all about that. He did explain that.

It’s also weird that’s how our news is getting selected.

It’s The Wall Street Journal. I have always revered The Wall Street Journal as very serious and business-y. They have feel-good articles in there too, but it’s pretty straight and narrow. It surprised me. End of my thought. It wasn’t directed at how dare Brad. I don’t mind explaining that to people because Brad got it. Brad is the only one that matters there. He understood what I was saying. I have nothing negative to say about Brad. I understand people who get frustrated that they don’t like him on their screen. I also was glad to hear Brad’s version of events. I felt like people were making it a lot bigger than they were, than it is. Brad cleared that up.

Ultimately, what goes on with Brad is confirmation bias or recommendation bias where it’s like when you buy a Toyota Corolla then you drive around. You start seeing Toyota Corollas everywhere. There was always the same number of Toyota Corollas, minus one, the one that you purchased. Brad is like that. Once he got pointed out to you or you noticed him, whenever you see it, you’re like, “Oh, that.” He or she closes by saying, “I’m glad she’s finally come around to pretending to be a decent person. I thought you had always been pretending.” The final sentence, “Frankly, her and her clique’s behavior have turned me off to Peloton as a whole.” We owe people that will buy your bike. I don’t know what to tell you and then with that last sentence, I’m like, “Is this like a SoulCycle plan?” That’s what it sounds like.

If you’d like to leave a review that’s not like that hopefully, you can do that at Apple podcast. You can also find us on Facebook at and while you’re there, join the group and stay up-to-date on things throughout the week. Now, that we’ve addressed all that, that’s probably the biggest drama we’ll have to contend with. Let’s dig in.

The Power Zone Pack.

Are we jumping in there?

I don’t think we should make them wait. People want to know. They would like to have a recap of what’s going and some people don’t wait into that. There’s a whole host of people that don’t do Power Zone Challenges that aren’t in the Power Zone Pack and that probably have no clue. We will bring them up to speed.

I’m going to do my best to start at the beginning without going back too far. The Power Zone Pack was created a long time ago, back in 2017. It was done because that person loved Matt Wilpers and Power Zone Training. That’s where it all started. The admin, Angie, became involved in the group and she was close with this other person. They created content together. Everything continued and then at some point when the instructors were told to leave the group, I’m not exactly sure of all the reasons why but Peloton decided to make this group official. It became the official Power Zone Pack. With that, it meant that Matt Wilpers and Denis Morton could stay in the group as their Peloton pages, not as themselves. They were in the group. Now, we’re official at this point. To be clear, official means a lot of things, but a couple of things that we do know for sure. One, it meant that they were co-admined by Peloton. Peloton is in the group. I don’t think that they moderated at all. I don’t think that they pay attention to the posts to be clear. They are there as an admin so that it’s not one person who is the admin of the group.

I deal with this where I work, where I control and admin the arenas page owned by the County of St. Charles. After I created it, it got traction and they figured out what Facebook was, I had to add some County officials as admins or moderators. If I went rogue, I couldn’t take the whole page down or if I’m typing crazy stuff on there, they could delete it or whatever. It is a very standard thing.

People may not know this so I’m going to spell this out a little bit for Facebook. If you are an admin, you can remove anyone including other admins. If you are a moderator, you cannot remove other people. It’s important to know that Peloton can remove people. In addition to that, it also means that Peloton supports this page, Peloton posts on this page or they can. They have the ability to post on this page. Mostly it’s Matt and Denis. I don’t think they’ve ever used that right, but they can. It also means that Peloton is behind it. It means that they give their support. That’s mostly what it means. One would think that it would also have to follow the same protocols that the OPP or the Moms’ page used.

It’s the same terms and conditions. That’s the assumption. Now, some crap went down. I need to back up again because I need to explain that at some point in 2018, there was an app created by a Peloton rider. I believe his name is Paul Ameden. I am only bringing his name into it as the creator and giving him credit for creating mPaceLine, which was the iOS version of an app that allowed you to pull in your Power Zone rides, get graphs and be able to see comparisons of your data.

TCO 108 | Power Zone Paywall

Power Zone Paywall: Different muscle groups are being utilized on a run versus on a bike.


To be clear, since it was an app, it did not store the data. It pulled in your data, calculated it and released it back into the wild. At some point later, I would say probably close to 7, 8 months after that. Paul may have been doing this app longer. I don’t know. At some point though, David entered the picture and David had an Android version of it called Power Zone Plus. He did the exact same thing for Android. These two players have been out there and most of what you heard talked about in the Power Zone Pack was mPaceLine because most of the Peloton users have Apple.

A lot of people got pushed to mPaceLine by word of mouth through the Power Zone Pack. There was an upgrade to the Power Zone Pack website, which was created at the end of 2018. Angie had created that website. At the bottom of that website, as always said it is not affiliated with Peloton. I will tell you I have been on rides where I’ve heard Matt Wilpers say, “Go to the Power Zone Pack webpage because that’s where all the challenges are located.” Even if it wasn’t the current challenge that people were doing for Power Zone, you could still go to the website. You could still get to the past challenges so you would know what rides to do. It’s very helpful because if you’re trying to put together a plan, you can see it all in one place. That was Matt’s point. Even though it was not an official page, Matt had directed traffic there. He also directed a lot of traffic to the Power Zone page on Facebook because that’s the official Power Zone page.

Now that I’ve gotten you all up-to-date, there was a change to the website and that change was that. You had to log in to the website to get to any challenges whatsoever. There was also an add-on. The add-on was for $70 a year, you would have access to “advanced metrics.” What are these advanced metrics? The truth is I don’t know because one, I haven’t paid for it. I haven’t logged in, but I have seen screenshots. Thank you all for the hundreds of messages I’ve gotten. There are advanced metrics that exist that basically is a graph that shows you how you did compare to what you were supposed to do. If you were told to go to zone three, where you in zone three or were you somewhere else. That’s what the advanced metrics are. They keep saying more is coming, but when people ask the question, we have not gotten a clear answer of what those are. I don’t know. I can’t answer that. More are coming. It’s all I know.

Obviously, I don’t know. Is that different than what mPaceLine and the Android, Power Zone Plus different than what they were providing?

The mPaceLine has quite a bit of metrics. It’s pretty in-depth. Paul has even added in tread metrics too. He has a ton of different graphs that you can look at, different ways that you can analyze your data. On the Power Zone Plus side, which is what I use, it’s a little more basic. You can compare if you’ve done that ride twice, you would be able to see how your Power Zone ride compared one to the other. You can also see your best Power Zone, your PRs and things like that. It creates that. I forgot to say, in the advanced metrics on the website, there is also tracking of the PRs. People did tell me that, but it’s not working at all. I didn’t include that.

Apparently, there’s some way that if you pay for it, you’re able to put in your FTPs from the past. Again, that’s not been verified because it’s not working correctly. I don’t mean to say that there’s no other stuff happening with the website. It doesn’t appear that anything’s working correctly, which all websites have bugs that happen. They’re still getting their stuff worked out. As far as being brand new, when this website popped up with this login, I want to be very clear, there were no terms and conditions. There were no privacy labels. There was nothing on it that indicated what was happening.

There’s still only that one sentence that said, “Not part of Peloton.” This raised so many questions with people and so people immediately wanted to know, “Where is this money going? What are we doing?” It’s $70 a year. To be clear, there are 32,000 people in the Power Zone Pack. I realized not all those people are active. Not all those people will pay. Even if only 20% of those people pay and choose, we’re talking $500,000. That’s a lot of money. We’re not talking chump change that this is being discussed. What got interesting and what pulled me into the discussion personally was that nobody would answer that question. Where is the money going? Who gets the money?

It was very coy. It was like the developers and I’m like, “$448,000 a year for developers is quite a bit.” Once it’s developed, obviously your startup costs to create something like that wouldn’t be the same as your maintenance costs in something like that. If people like it and renewed, you would make the same amount of money the following year. Presumably, as Peloton continues to grow, so would presumably the Power Zone Pack page and subscriptions therefore. It’s like, “That’s a lot of money.”

There are so many layers to this. My biggest concern right off the bat was that nobody would answer it. What upset me, people who asked the question had to preface their question with, “I hope it’s okay to ask this.” That got me to thinking, “Why do they feel they even have to preface that?” I know why. I’m spelling it out to people because I got to thinking about the past history of this group and the people who have been unceremoniously kicked out of the group with no explanation simply because they disagreed with the admin. You have people who are asking questions that are afraid to ask questions. I started watching because this is an official group, they can’t just kick people out.

I haven’t seen anybody kicked out, but I have seen posts deleted simply because they asked a question. The admin and the moderators, their rationale for that is that things got too heated. They got too negative. Here’s the thing, why is it that the one post, the only post that still shows any discussion about this website is one that only revered Angie. It has 410 comments on it. It is the only post talking about anything to do with this website that is still up. When I say anything to do with the website, the discussion, the debate around the website. There are other posts that are up like, “Why isn’t this part working? Why isn’t that part working?” The only post that’s up that had anything to do with this debate.

I’ve seen the other groups run into this like a monkey’s group. I’m in that when Peter Tork died, people kept posting on there like, “Did you know Peter Tork died?” It’s like, “Yeah, we got it.” In those instances, they would say, “We’re shutting this thread down. Go to this thread to talk about this.”

You tell people why you delete things.

If they want them to all live in this post, they should be directing people to that post, but they’re not doing that. They are deleting things.

There was a post on there that I saw where the person said, “I don’t know if it’s okay to ask this question, but I’m asking this question, where’s the money going? What are these features going to be?” There were 150 comments, all of them deleted. Not one person on that thread was told that their comment or that thread was being deleted. It got deleted. That’s not okay because that is an official page. The reason I am taking it to this forum, my specific complaint with this is that every time I post something like that on that page, it gets deleted. The moderator told me that I wasn’t allowed to say things like that. I’m bringing it here. I am allowed to say it. You can’t tell me to shut up because you’re an official page whether you like it or not.

You are not flame-throwing and name-calling.

My comments are things like, “Why can you not tell us who is getting the money,” and telling them things like, “The reason people are saying that it seems shady is because you won’t be transparent.” If I’m not allowed to say something like that, Peloton needs to tell me, not the moderator who doesn’t own Peloton. When you get out of this whole thing with the money situation, once you moved past that, you have the issue of, “It’s a Peloton page where there are Peloton instructors who are telling people to go to the Peloton Facebook page to do the Power Zone Challenge.”

Once you get there, you’re told to go over to this website to log into this challenge. When you get to the website, you’re told, “and to get these metrics, for an additional fee be paid for this, the $70 advanced metrics.” That means presumably inferring, however you want to say it, that Peloton agrees with all of that. I don’t think that Peloton agrees with that. The reason that I don’t think Peloton agrees with that is that you and I have a podcast, obviously it’s all about Peloton. We did consider for a while that we would be able to create content outside of the podcast that perhaps we could make some money on because we are capitalistic people and we wanted to make some money.

We do not begrudge people making money. Our thought was it’s very common in podcasts to create additional content. Not that what you’re reading now would go behind a paywall, but we would create additional content that would maybe live behind a paywall.

I have to explain what a paywall is because so many people have asked me what a paywall is. A paywall is simply a webpage that holds content separate from the free content and that’s it.

You have to pay to get it. If you’re a local newspaper, all of a sudden, they want to charge you after you’ve read three articles. It’s because it’s behind a paywall. That’s all it means. Our thought process was we could create additional content, do extra work and if you wanted to access that additional content, it would live over here and you would still get what you’ve been getting at no cost and nothing about your user experience would change. There would be bonus stuff over here if you wanted to kick in, that’d be great and Peloton was not a fan of that.

I have to back up. It’s not even that they weren’t a fan. They said to be fair and consistent with their policies, what that would mean is that we would no longer be able to post on any official pages at all about our podcast. We would have to change the way that we would get access to Peloton employees for interviews, which once I thought about it, I was like, “Yeah, that makes sense.” Tom and I decided we wanted it. We do this as a hobby. Yes, it would be nice to make money off of it, but that wasn’t our original goal. We decided to stay with what we’re doing because that was a choice we made. The point is we went to Peloton and asked and they said, “No, thank you. Even though we’re not an official page, we don’t say anything insinuating that we’re Peloton.”

It says right on our logo, a fan podcast. That was very deliberate on our part.

We drew a very thick line from the beginning out of respect and deference to Peloton and in deference to their attorneys, they’re included in that. Peloton said, “Keep doing that. Don’t change that.” We were like, “Okay.” I don’t think that Peloton suddenly had this reversal of fortune and they were like, “The Power Zone Pack, that’s okay. Even though you’re an official page, we’re cool with that.” I feel strongly that they are not okay with this. I also feel strongly they were never asked. Here we are a couple of days later and most of the posts had been taken down. People are paying and there’s a lot of privacy concerns about that because they have put terms and conditions up. By law, you’re supposed to have all this privacy stuff listed out and saying, “Nothing is going to happen to your data. It’s protected.”

If something is going to happen to your data, you’ve got to let people know.

Here’s a big difference that you need to understand between the app and the website. The apps that were out there, Power Zone Plus and mPaceLine, simply took your data as a pass-through and they used it. Spit it back out at you and it went away. They don’t hold onto it. This website holds your data. There is a whole huge host of problems with them holding onto that data that were not being created as problems through those apps. That is very different and people do not understand that. People also seem to think that this entire uproar is about Angie making money. I don’t have a problem in the world with Angie making money. I do have a huge problem with Angie not being transparent about it. In the background, what a lot of people don’t realize is there was an LLC created. That was created back in February and that has Angie and one other individual listed. That’s it.

It’s not the people who help her run the contest or run the challenges. It’s not anything about Peloton. It is her and one other individual that belonged to that LLC. That money is going to Angie and this other individual. They are the ones who would then decide what to do with it once they have it. That’s up to them but I think that they should be open and transparent about that. You see since that LLC was in effect back in February, that means that the last two challenges that have been done were also being run as money-making prospects. All the money that you donated for prizes, no, you didn’t donate that. That went to a for-profit organization and you were not told that was happening. Also, if you purchase merchandise, it was going to a for-profit organization and you were not told that’s what was happening. In addition to all of that, there are now infringement concerns because the last three challenges have been using Marvel, Star Wars characters, etc. There are people that are outright going and complaining about that to Marvel.

That’s potentially a copyright infringement and a violation of their intellectual property. That’s owned by Disney. Both of those properties are owned by Disney. They’ve sued daycares for painting Mickey Mouse on the wall because if they don’t protect their rights to those characters, they could theoretically lose that right. They have to defend it wherever it pops up regardless of how douchey it might make them look.

Peloton is now linked to that because this all started on an official page. That it is a money-making venture that people are taking a hard look at, all these things are becoming magnified. Not only is the LLC at risk, but now they are placing Peloton at risk because they had it posted and still have it posted on an official page that belongs to Peloton. I take that very personally because you’re messing with the company I love. You’re not being very transparent to them or to any of the people who belong to it. That’s not cool.

Ironically enough, they have now stripped all the Avengers mentions off of their website, but left all of it up on the official Peloton page. Clearly, their interests are only for themselves, not for Peloton whatsoever. Let’s talk about another legal concern here. Again, there are a lot of people out there that are like, “I have no problem with Angie making money.” I don’t either. Go for it, but who started these challenges? Matt Wilpers did. He started it on his own back in 2016 long before there was a Power Zone Pack. If Matt signed a pretty standard agreement that most people sign these days, it states that anything that you create while working there belongs to that company, which means that if he created the Power Zone Challenge, it belongs to Peloton.

Peloton is so much more than a bike. It's an entire experience. It's a community. Click To Tweet

That’s a very standard thing. A famous example of it is the people that created the Bratz dolls did that while working for the company that made Barbie. That company ended up owning the Bratz dolls and they went off and they were on for years. They were like, “You did that off the clock, but you were under this agreement with us.” I’m sure that’s the way that ended is they ended up owning the Bratz dolls and those guys and girls maybe got nothing.

If that’s the case, it does affect derivatives. Any derivatives of the Power Zone Pack challenge would also belong to Peloton, which means that Angie is making money directly off of Peloton’s intellectual property.

It seems like a lot of people were saying, “This was so much work for Angie.” I’m sure it’s been a lot of work for her.

There’s no doubt that she spends a ton of time on it.

My confusion is I don’t know how what’s going on right now is less work. There were already two apps in place that seemed to be doing the same thing.

She says that she can’t do the challenges without this website, which I have no doubt that’s true. The website probably aggregates the data, but that you could have worked with either the apps to ask to help aggregate the data or Peloton. Wouldn’t that have been an obvious choice to have that conversation?

I don’t think they’ve got one of the data aggregating machines over there in a backroom with Peloton.

I would think so too especially since they’re now doing challenges on the tablets. It seems to me that Peloton already has this in place, that if somebody had a discussion with them, maybe we could have gone there or eventually gotten there. Maybe it wouldn’t be now or tomorrow, but we could’ve gotten there eventually. That seems strange.

You’ve got to ask yourself the question, is it about lessening in the workload or is it about, here’s a revenue source?

At any point in time, if it’s about recouping the cost you’ve already spent, which I’m sure is significant.

There are so many things when it comes to something like that. Unless you’re doing it, you don’t realize how much money goes out. Even with what we do, like we do a lot of things where if we sat down and totaled up what we spent, we probably don’t want to know. It certainly adds up. No one begrudges her to recoup those costs or even if it gets big enough, if you build something that hits critical mass and it can make revenue, good for you.

Do it through Peloton, do it with Peloton and tell people you’re going to.

If we ever get this big enough to where I don’t know we have advertisers or whatnot and we’re making money, we’ll let you know. We say this on the other podcast all the time, like, “Our goal is to sell out.” Are you kidding me? We wouldn’t be like the audio equivalent of a NASCAR if we could.

At any point in time, if this got too big, if the Power Zone Challenge endeavor had gotten too big, then stop. That was always an option. You could have asked for help and at any point in time, you could have been like, “This is completely out of control, $5 a head for everybody to participate.” I cannot imagine one person complaining about that. To me, it’s not about recouping costs because there were other ways to go about this that was one, transparent and two, very fair.

When you see the amount of revenue that could potentially be generated by this with some modest numbers, 10% or 20% go through and register, when you see the amount of revenue that can generate, it undercuts the idea that it’s to recoup cost when 20% generates almost $500,000 in revenue. I feel confident in saying that whatever her current out of pocket costs are, they’re probably not in the mid-six-figures.

If they are, she should have stopped a long time ago.

Unless she’s that loaded in which case, would you like to talk about a podcast?

The apps that everybody keeps pointing to you to say, “They make money.” That’s different for a number of reasons. They cost $15 a year, not $70. It’s a lot easier to swallow.

It’s a lot easier to believe that $10, $15 a year versus $70 sounds a lot more like, “We’re discovering developmental costs.” If they make a little bit of money and nobody’s ever going to stick the landing perfectly where I spent $1,100 and I raised $1,100 done. There’s a big difference between $15 a year and $70 a year.

Also, the people who made the apps always approached it from they were making money. They never came to anybody and said, “I’m doing this because I’m so nice, just be grateful.” No. They were like, “I have this cool idea. Would you like to buy it?” They were very open to that. Nobody had to question that because they were very upfront. It was an app. You were paying for it, end of discussion. It wasn’t tied to an official group. Peloton has never been like, and neither has Matt Wilpers, ever been like, “Use mPaceLine, use Power Zone Plus.” Nobody has ever done that. Now, you have people who are brand new to Peloton, who don’t know any of this history going to an official page and being directed to this website. How do they not make the assumption or at least be confused by, “Is this owned by Peloton? Is this not owned by Peloton? This $70 that I’m about to spend, is it covered by Peloton?” It is not covered by Peloton.

I thought $40 a month was what I paid for Peloton. Why is there an extra fee for this other portion of the thing?

People have been sending messages to support left and right asking that question, “I don’t understand why I’m being asked to pay more.” I know there are a lot of people out there that are saying, “You don’t have to pay for it to get to the challenge.” No, you don’t. The point is it’s confusing to people who are new. There is not enough of a distinction drawn. It started from an official page, it creates blurriness. It creates confusion. If Peloton wasn’t okay with us doing that as a podcast, not part of Peloton, not on an official page, there is no way in my mind they are okay with the Power Zone Pack doing this.

That’s fair. Anyway, that’s what happened in Power Zone. If you’ve been wondering, there you go. Watch this space and to be continued. As more things happen or don’t happen, we will keep you posted because that’s what we do.

It is what we do. Also, I want to say this has all been put together by reading things, by seeing things, by having people reach out to me. These are all our conjectures based on all of the information given to us and our experiences. I want to put that out there.

If our conjecture is incorrect, it’s because the main party involved won’t answer direct questions and they’ll tell you that they did when it never occurred.

I wonder if we should also talk about the fact that we do accept donations and be transparent about that as well because I don’t want to be a hypocrite.

We do accept donations.

I don’t feel we’re being a hypocrite. I want to explain what people have not asked us, but should they ask us, “What are you doing with that money?” It is 100% going to our interns to pay for the work that they do.

People have asked though, what’s the difference between them raising money and we have a donate button on our website now. To be transparent, it has not generated $500,000. We are certainly not complaining.

We’re not talking $500,000. That’s all we’re trying to say.

TCO 108 | Power Zone Paywall

Power Zone Paywall: One of the keys to save your legs is to shorten your stride a little bit, but increase your cadence.


We feel the differences. We’ve been transparent about, “It’s over there and if you want to do it, you can. If you don’t like, no big deal.” When people ask where the money goes, we’ve also been transparent. Like, “This money is going to, at the moment, we’ve been paying the interns to edit some of the episodes to help lighten your load.” They edit the interview specifically and we immediately started paying them more. To date, that’s all we’ve used that money for. I’m not saying that will always be the case, but for the moment, we’ve been letting that money sit there and we’ve been paying the interns out of it. Other things that we’ve incurred, expenses for the buttons homecoming that we handed out, the sign that was behind us, our plane tickets. The plane tickets, I’d be like, “You probably would’ve gone anyway.” That’s could easily be deemed.

It could be called a business expense, but quite frankly, we’re not at this time running an official business.

It’s a fair question, which is why we answered it. That’s how that works.

It’s simple. That’s how you do it. Do we want to talk about the other things that happened at Peloton?

We should because other things occurred in the world.

There’s another new fun program that started. Emma Lovewell started the Crush Your Core Challenge. It’s not a challenge. It’s a program. It’s located on your tablet. It’s four weeks long. You get to do all of her core videos. Basically, it’s five days a week. It’s five out of seven days for four weeks. It looks super intense and I’m very excited that it is out there in time for summer. I will be doing that mixed in with my tread challenge, mixed in with a little bit of the marathon training plan. I haven’t been doing a whole lot of the bike lately and not looking good for the Power Zone training because I’m turned off on the whole thing right now. I love Matt Wilpers and that will never change and I respect his training very much. The whole group right now, I’m not happy with.

Joining us are Paul and Debbie Erickson.

For anybody that did not catch the connection to the race director. Tom and I went to Alabama so that I could participate because obviously Tom would not participate in a duathlon that Paul is the race director for. It’s called the Heel and Crank Duathlon and it took place in Mooresville, Alabama. Paul put on the whole thing. Debbie does a whole bunch of stuff in the background including making fabulous pancakes that are available after the race.

Thank you, Crystal. I appreciate that. I’m glad you liked them.

How did you guys come across Peloton?

It was probably Tour de France year 2016 is when we first saw some of the early commercials that were being put on in regard to Peloton, but we didn’t pull the trigger back then. After a ride that Paul and I had done. We’re both outdoor cyclists. We had done a ride outside in July of 2017. I have multiple sclerosis and I’m sensitive to heat. It was that month that we decided, “There’s enough of this. We’re not getting a chance to exercise as much as we want to and this heat is affecting me.” I love being on a bike. We decided to go ahead and invest in ourselves and our health and ended up purchasing the Peloton.

That’s a very good reason.

How effective was it in that regard? I’m assuming since we’re having this conversation that it worked out okay.

Do you mean that we got it?

Your goal is so you could continue to exercise and have a bike experience with MS. Was that as beneficial as you had hoped?

It turned out to be better than I ever thought it would be. It’s not a bicycle. To anybody that doesn’t have a Peloton, it’s hard to explain. I know I sound like some crazy obsessive geek when I talk about it at work because I’ll come in with my Peloton shirts and whatnot like this. I’m like, “I want so much more than a bike.” It’s an entire experience. It’s the community. It’s not cycling content, spin classes per se. If I wanted to do yoga, there’s an opportunity to do yoga. If I wanted to do stretching, weightlifting, take your pick. It’s like my own home gym attached to one device.

That was the nice thing about it. We had a gym membership before and we did spin classes there. We did some Body Pump classes and things like that but we’d only go a couple of times a week. Once we got the Peloton and we realized, “Maybe if we have a gym in our living room, we can ride whenever we wanted to as many times we wanted to.”

It’s an exercise on our schedule whenever we want to, how much we want to.

It is a game-changer. How often do you guys both ride? You said you’re an outdoor cyclist so I assume you guys still ride outdoors as well?

We do. We usually only go riding outdoors probably once or twice a week. Indoors, we probably ride on average 5 to 6 days a week at least.

Is that each or combined?

Each of us. We are those super crazy, geeky people that enjoy working out and sweating. I know Tom, that’s so not you. You’re like, “Why would you even want to do that?”

We are that one Peloton commercial where the lady is riding the bike, she gets off and her husband comes right in and gets right on it.

That looks like that when I’m getting off the bike and I don’t have perfectly behaved children, nor are my kids little anymore.

It’s managing the time between work and each other and make time for both of us on the bike.

Your children aren’t little, I would hope that they would be better behaved than that.

Our kids are 32 and 28 so we’re no spring chicken.

Which by the way, since we met you guys, I have to say, I would never have believed that you have children that age.

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On the drive back after dinner, we were like, “No.”

I was making sure that she was not necessarily implied upon me.

Would you say that you guys had a fitness level before that is the same now that you have Peloton or has it changed one direction or the other? Do you think anything has changed other than you ride more?

Before Debbie’s diagnosis of her MS back in 2012, I’d say we were probably fairly sedentary as far as things go. Once her diagnosis came in, she decided that she wanted to start being active. We got the bike.

Not exactly, Paul. I quit working only because I was sick all the time and I didn’t know what was going on with me. It was about six months after I quit working and I had started working out. We’re not talking 1, 2 days a week. I’m talking 2 to 3 hours a day, most days of the week. About six months after I quit working, I went to see my primary care doctor. I told her all the things that were going on with me and she said, “I don’t want to scare you, but you might have MS.” I had a positive diagnosis in July of that year. I started exercising quite a bit more, but having gone back to work back in 2015, I wasn’t able to be as active as I would like. Having bought the Peloton has ended up having more availability of time for us to work out on our schedule versus trying to fit it in before work or after work. Fight for your spot over in the gym and all that jazz that goes along with having a gym membership and equipment that smells bad and everything else.

Debbie has not necessarily exercised more since she has a Peloton, but Paul, have you?

Around 2013, we did No Boundaries 5k Program and that’s probably when it started kicking back in from me. That led to triathlon stuff and triathlon training at various levels.

All I’ve done is allow us to be more flexible and consistent, whereas we probably weren’t as consistent about working out as we probably would have been if the gymnasium was located next door. It’s in our living room so there you go.

Are you going to pull the trigger on the Tread or are you good with what you’ve got?

We’ve talked about it.

We went and looked at it over in Nashville.

They had a Peloton store there so we checked it out. We love to look at it and we loved how it felt. It was quiet. The thing is that I used to run but Debbie doesn’t run as much now because she’s had some knee issues.

Also, where we live, it wouldn’t be a Peloton delivery. It would be through Expo. We’ve heard inconsistent reports. We’re still a little bit on the edge. I would like to do it. It’s a $4,000 commitment. If I was to look at it for how much the Peloton has brought health-wise into my life, if I was to spend that money going to like paying for a spin instructor or one of our local spin places, I would’ve spent the amount that we spend on the Peloton how many times over.

It’s saving you money.

We’re on the cuff of buying one. It’s definitely one of those things that we would like to get. We’ve already talked about where it would go, how we would position it and what other furniture we’d have to move?

Can you tell everybody how many cats and dogs you guys have because I’m still in awe of that?

Don’t ever get involved with animal rescue unless you count on keeping a few, but you’re not allowed to judge.

I’m not judging. I’m in awe. I don’t understand how you even make it work.

We have sixteen cats, three dogs and a husband. We had a normal number of animals, not so very long ago and I got involved with the animal rescue stuff.

She took all the ones that ended up being sick or have issues and she wouldn’t let them go to another home until they were back healthy and that takes time. That time, she falls in love with them and they become ours.

They get a lot of special needs ones too. Ones that are feral or had some serious sickness and things like that.

It’s nice that you guys are able to do that.

That’s a lot to deal with. I wasn’t even talking about quantity. I was like, “That’s a lot to take on.”

You do a lot of stuff for other people or other animals because you guys do the race stuff. You have the Tri Club and all the donations that go from that. Now you’re saving animals. You guys are involved in a lot of things where you take care of people and animals so that’s cool.

We try to. You only get one life so make the most of it.

I’m going to burn it out at both ends. That’s my goal.

How did you end up becoming so involved with the Heel and Crank Race?

That was a long story. Going back to my tri-training, I met a lot of great people. I wanted to tri-training. A friend of ours, his name is David Kyle. He had MS as well and he was Debbie’s inspiration early on.

He was my North direction for the longest time.

TCO 108 | Power Zone Paywall

Power Zone Paywall: The more you do something, the more muscle memory your body will end up developing and the easier it will become.


He competed for a triathlon at a level that he is competing at worlds. He competed at a world level up in London several years ago and could have had a chance to go down to Rio back in 2016 but he decided he wanted to spend more time with the kids growing up.

I looked at this guy who I knew that had MS so bad that his first two years after diagnosis, watched his children grew up around him, basically living on the couch and couldn’t get up, couldn’t walk. He told his doctor that he wanted to compete in a triathlon. His doctor told him it was inconceivable. I looked at him as inspiration for what can I do to improve my quality of life and sure that I don’t lose more ability because at that point, my symptoms were pretty bad. I didn’t run. I didn’t own a bicycle and I sure as heck didn’t swim. I got this bright idea that I was going to try doing a triathlon. Paul being the supportive husband he is and he’s super competitive too. He’s so fast running and I’m the sloth. He took off with it and compete. Whereas me, I was just doing it.

I participated, but over time, you see the same people all the time. The previous race for Heal and Crank was a ride and go on do some other things and he asked me if I was interested in taking it over. For one year, I was his assistant director or co-director, whatever you want to call it. I took it over in 2017.

I always helped out with the food prep in years past.

We volunteered both for the Team Rocket Tri Club stuff that we did and before that. We also volunteered for our Huntsville Track Club stuff where Debbie was at one time the secretary. We were involved in races almost every weekend it seemed like. This seemed like a way for us to do something different but be able to give back. It’s a smaller race so it shouldn’t be too much overhead.

Because of the charter that Team Rocket Tri Club has that every bit of money that they make on a race is donated to nonprofits, we incur all our costs. In addition to anything additional that comes in, it would get donated to charities.

Team Market has 600 some odd members. We gave nearly $50,000 to charity through all of our races. I gave away $8,000 for a race that didn’t even happen because of bad weather. Thanks for the race insurance. My charities for the last couple of years had been The ALS Association of Alabama to help those folks that have ALS and help to find a cure. A charity that’s a little closer to my heart and Debbie’s is the National MS Society of the Alabama-Mississippi Chapter. Those monies go to help support families that are dealing with MS as well as funding research stuff to find a cure. In fact, some of the funding helped to fund the medicine that was developed that Debbie has taken that have daily shots.

It’s pretty neat. It’s a great society. We are happy to be able to do something that we enjoy, support a healthy community and be able to donate the proceeds to charities that make a difference.

The nerd in me has to ask, Team Rocket, was that a deliberate Pokémon reference or does it predate that?

Team Rocket pretty much predates Pokémon, Pikachu and all the wild stuff.

I thought it was started by a Spring City Cycle Club.

Yeah, it was an offshoot of our local cycling club that’s been around for a long time.

Huntsville is the rocket city so that’s where the name comes from.

I was wondering if that was a deliberate nod or if it was a coincidence.

I hope it’s not related. We are the Rocket City. The Saturn V was developed here in Huntsville. Everything is rocket around here so it made sense.

How did pancakes become a thing and why aren’t they a thing at every race we’ve gone to, Crystal?

It’s not that you’re eating carbs.

No, I couldn’t eat them, but sometimes I can.

The previous race director started that as a way to help boost the numbers because most people know that triathletes love to eat and drink. That’s why I had a beer sponsor too. We had pizza, beer and pancakes at our race before.

I totally had pancakes and a beer.

It’s a carbo-loading.

Although by the time I was done, it was afternoon.

The previous race director started doing the pancake thing. When I took over and I asked Debbie to handle that and that aspect of it because one, she’s a great cook and two, she expressed interest in helping. She’s the one that started the blueberry thing. She didn’t want to do these plain pancakes. She wanted to take it up a couple of notches. I let her fill in the details there.

It’s one of those things that I’m going to sound like this earth mother, crazy person. I’m from California and raised in the Midwest. My mother was one of those crazy health food people. I had the cool, uncool kid lunch that nobody would ever trade lunches with me. I grew up in sprouted grain bread, unmixed peanut butter nasty. I always tried to incorporate healthier choices. I believe in natural whenever possible. I wanted to use real blueberries. I wanted to use real maple syrup instead of high fructose corn syrup. I put my mark on it. If I could make pancakes better from scratch for that many people, I would, but I can’t imagine. We had four ten-pound bags of pancake batter for that size race.

I was shocked that you were cutting up strawberries for toppings. You did a lot. That’s a lot of strawberries to cut.

I hope you got to enjoy some.

I did with whipped cream. How did the race become a duathlon instead of a run or a ride? I don’t come across a lot of duathlons.

It is Team Rocket and our specialty is multi-sports. I wasn’t about to try and do a swim in early April in Alabama. The water is too cold. It’s been perhaps since 2004, 2005. It started back in that time frame to honor a runner and bicyclist named Darin Kruse who passed from ALS. They wanted to go with the run bike run format because the original venue was nowhere near water. It stayed with a run bike run. We have the Huntsville Track Club if we want to do a running event and we have Spring City for cycling events. We were the marriage between the two to handle the multi-sport.

Triathletes are a special brand that’s crazy. Duathlon here in early season fits the format in April because it kicks off the season where they’re like the first real multi-sport event here in Northern Alabama for that time of year.

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What’s the best way to train for something like that?

If you have something like a Peloton or a Peloton Tread, that’s a great start. You can’t just run and you can’t just cycle. The key to effective multi-sport training if we’re talking duathlon is to do what they call a brick workout. Let’s say you’re going to want to max 30 to 45-minute Power Zone classes, once you get off that, either go outside or jump on the Tread and run for at least a mile at a moderate pace. That way, your legs have a chance to acclimate from the cadence of cycling to the cadence of running.

Even though it’s the same muscles, it’s slightly different muscle groups that are being utilized on a run versus on a bike. Your legs are going to feel like lead when you come off the bike when you’re doing a brick workout. That’s exactly why they call it a brick workout.

As you do the training, longer rides or longer endurance rides and started bumping up the mileage on the run afterward. Start with maybe half a mile and go to a mile.

I personally think there’s a lot of good content over on the Peloton that could lead somebody to be able to do one without any outside intervention. Eventually, you would probably need to take it outside to like you, Crystal, getting on a real bicycle is the same as clipping into your Peloton. There’s a whole other dynamic that gravity. I’ve taken myself out and taken Paul out.

Is that why you had Domino’s pizza there?

He was one of our previous club presidents and he owns most of the dominoes in this area of Alabama. He’s great about giving back to the community. He’s at pretty much at every Team Rocket race. He has his own race up in Tennessee that we do. It’s a trail run anywhere from 10K up to 50K.

That must be a Domino’s thing because I know the Domino’s pizza in St. Louis is the same way. They’re very involved with doing different community things, whether it’s like bringing pizzas to schools or races like yours or whatnot. They’re very involved and very hands-on.

I feel Alabama has a lot more races. You guys have a lot more races near you. It feels like it because it also seems like you have more bike-friendly areas than here. I don’t even know what that main street was that we were on, but it had these giant sidewalks with stop signs at the end of every block. I was surprised by that. I felt like that was based on outdoor sports of some kind, at least walking and running. We don’t have anything like that here.

St. Louis has a bigger population. I’m sure there are lots of races around there, but around here being a little smaller area and we’re a little more spread out, it doesn’t take fire to get out into the sticks. When you have that space, you can have more cyclists and runners on the road in a safe manner. Are the motorists as friendly? I would probably say they’re probably not, but I’ve never ridden my bike down.

We’re a city of transplants here in Huntsville. Even though we are the second to fattest state in the nation, second only to Mississippi, here in Huntsville, people are pretty much health conscious. As such, it seems that there are a lot of races that end up going on over here.

I hadn’t seen these many races in a town the size ever made when I lived in St. Louis as a youngster. There are even more races here than they have in Houston. Our local sports shop sponsors almost a good chunk of the races, whether they’d be road races or multi-sport races like mine.

A city the size that we are, they matter races that are here. It’s hard to put on an event that isn’t something going on that same week and somewhere else almost doing what you’re doing or at least running or something like that.

Maybe we had a race up in Tennessee the week before.

If it’s the second fattest state, there must be a lot of people going to the same races over and over.

We’ve got a few newbies over in our race. We are very beginner-friendly.

You talk about it being the second fattest state, I told you guys this story, but I will share it here. I thought this was a funny window into that because I had this thought of, “Is this one of the fattest states?” I went to get a soda from the vending machine at the hotel and it was a newer soda machine, so it wasn’t like some old rickety soda machine. We were at a DoubleTree. It’s a nice hotel. It was a new soda machine. They had absolutely no diet soda option in that machine at all. It was two slots for Pepsi, three for Mountain Dew. You have something there called Dr. Wham, which I’d never heard of. It tastes like a cross between Dr. Pepper and George Michael. There was a slot for water, but there was no diet soda at all. That’s crazy especially when I’m like, “This is a hotel. It’s tourists. We’re from out of town. We might want to diet.”

What tips would you give to me for the next race that I’m going to do?

Are you running the race again? Do you like it and want to do it again?

You don’t have to be so shocked. I don’t know about that race for next year. I don’t have anything planned for next year. That’s a little too far out for me to think too hard about. This October, I am going to do the Gran Fondo in South Carolina. I’m doing the 50-mile version though because I heard that the 80-mile version has insane hills. We need not start with that.

Training for a multi-sport race, as I said, I do the bricks. One thing I noticed while you were running is that you have a fairly long stride for your height.

I feel so tiny.

I used to run at a cadence of about 150 or so. I remember I’d gone with Debbie. I’d accelerate away without trying to, it’s happened. She’s 5’1”. I’m 5’10”. I’d fall back and I realized I’m going to match her cadence and stride. She runs a naturally perfect 180 cadence. It’s like perfect. I started running at that cadence and shortening my stride. Over time, I was able to do that and I was able to lengthen out a little bit. One of the keys to save your legs is to shorten your stride a little bit but increase your cadence. It’s like Matt says on the Tread.

Put some music on that has that natural running cadence and trying to run in in time with the music. I think some of Matt’s outdoor activity stuff has that cadence in it and built into it, so follow that primer. I think even one of the 5K training. He talks about it.

It’s much less stress on the legs. If you can shorten that cadence so that it’s amazing how much better I feel on my legs after a run when I’ve run that faster cadence and a shorter stride than what I would normally run.

Get out there and do it more often than what you probably had been would my own suggestion. The more you do something, the more muscle memory your body will end up developing and the easier it will become.

They’re called a pillow pool. You could totally train for a triathlon. I’m seeing to keep swimming and you suggested jets and he had TVs above and below the water.

What are your leaderboard names and how’d you come with it?

Mine is pretty easy. Mine is Pollywogs. My grandmother and my dad’s mom started calling me that when I was little and I used to hate that name. When it came time for the Peloton, “Let’s go with that. I like it.” It’s fun so I stuck with it.

TCO 108 | Power Zone Paywall

Power Zone Paywall: The one thing, the best thing, about Peloton is there’s an instructor for everybody.


Mine is Mother of Catz and I would’ve been at cats with an S but that was already taken so it’s Catz with a Z. I’m moving again a big Game of Thrones fan. I love Daenerys Targaryen, The Mother of Dragons. It’s come to that Game of Thrones thing.

Do you guys have any advice for somebody that’s starting their Peloton journey in general?

I’d probably start by saying don’t worry about the leaderboard so much. We all start somewhere on this journey. My level of fitness isn’t the same as Debbie’s and isn’t the same as yours or the person who’s doing their first ride after tuning in to this podcast. It’s their number.

That also set up the bike correctly. I can’t stress how much you feel better when the bike is set up comparably for you. For me an outdoor cyclist, spend that time, set it up correctly. Also, a good pair of bike shorts because you’re going to get sore in another range.

I know Christine D’Ercole says that. She has a video up on Facebook on how to go through setting up the bike. I’ve seen it done before and I basically made a little string with no bearing from the first set of bearings and replacing the Peloton. I use that to hang from my knee to make sure that my foot’s in the right position so I can adjust my seat height forward and backward.

Spend a little time to set it up, get out there and do it like anything else. It’s a repetitive thing. Start off small goals, get on a Peloton for five minutes, do a low impact ride for ten minutes. Do some of the introductory things for fun. The one thing, the best thing about Peloton is there’s an instructor for everybody. I enjoy taking the Power Zone classes with Matt and Denis, but not everybody likes that structure. Some people want a cheerleader. Inspirational words by Christine, that lady is something else when it comes to talking about words matters. She had very positive messages. Her content always has something to do with about I am, I can, I will, I do. It’s the words that you say to yourself that you believe.

How can people find you guys on social media if you would like to be found, and how can people find out more about your race? I’m assuming that you’re okay with people doing that part of this.

I would love to have more people come to the race. I have some ideas for next year that we’re still working out and it could make it interesting. As far as social media goes, I think Facebook is about all we’ve got. I’m on Facebook and I’m on that Power Zone Pack Facebook page and some of the instructor pages like Denis’ and Matt’s. Facebook is about it. As far as the race goes, our club’s website is You’d see all of our different races when they’re scheduled. My race is always in the first or second weekend in April, depending on when some of the other big races around here are. Charities will sometimes change up a little bit, but money still all goes to charity. Any Pelotonians want to come down from my race next year, I’d be happy to set up a Peloton division for you and have our own little leaderboard going on for the Peloton races if they want to do that. It would be fun to do for the road rider jerseys or whatever.

We will remind people about that as the time gets closer.

Are you going to come?

I can’t commit because it is a very long way away and I don’t know what life’s going to bring. What are you giving me that look for?

A lot of the hinges on like it worked out well because we didn’t have the kids.

At any rate, I am definitely not saying no because I did have a lot of fun. Tom and I both did and we might even be able to work it out even if we did have the kids. There are a lot of different moving pieces with that, I cannot commit at this time, but I would like to. That is for sure.

Thank you so much for taking the time out to talk to us. We appreciate it.

Thank you, guys, for being such great hosts while we’re in Alabama.

We’d love to have you come down. It was a fun time.

Did the Ericksons have a recipe? If it’s not pancakes, then I say we delete the whole thing.

It’s not pancakes but listen to this title, Tom. It’s soft and chewy chocolate chip cookies with pecans and walnuts but those are optional toppings.

I will say at least they didn’t take the chocolate chip cookie and try to make it healthy.

This is a great cookie recipe. We’ve got all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, unsalted butter and granulated sugar. We’ve got some eggs, room temperature, vanilla and semi-sweet chocolate chips and chopped pecans or walnuts. I’m going to put it up on the website and we’ll get to it but this looks amazing. If you need that recipe in the meantime, let me know and I will email it to you.

What do you have in store for people next time?

We’re going to be on vacation so I don’t know what we’re going to have in store. We may have some news. We may have nothing.

There is no telling. If you would like to know if the chances of you receiving an episode next time are increasing, keep an eye on the weather in Mexico. If it rains, then you’ll probably get an episode.

Especially in Cancun because they’re going to be like, “Where?”

Until then, where can people find you?

People can find me at They can find me on Twitter, Instagram, the bike, the Tread @ClipOutCrystal.

You can find me on Twitter @RogerQBert or on Facebook at You can find the show online at While you’re there, you can like the page and join the group to stay up-to-date on all the fun and drama throughout the week. That’s it for this one. Thanks for tuning in and until next time, keep pedaling.

Also, running.

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