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- Peloton building a 175K sq ft office in Bentonville, AR.
- Financial Times talks about John Foley’s investment strategy.
- Peloton execs accused of insider trading.
- The Verge reviews Peloton Row.
- Dr. Jenn – Dealing with burnout as you approach the finish line.
- Logan Aldridge is now a Tread instructor.
- The final episode of LOL Cody features SNL’s Bowen Yang.
- Cody catches flack for his take on Taylor Swift.
- Robin Arzon has an announcement to make on CBS Morning.
- Emma Lovewell is featured in Martha’s Vineyard Magazine.
- Marcel Dinkins has a new class – Take That Hill starting 12/6.
- Alex Toussaint partners with Smartwater.
- Kendall Toole talked to Wonder Mind about her mental health journey.
- Aditi Shahs unveils Intro To Meditation.
- Matty Maggicomo’s Theater In Thirty spotlights Kimberly Akimbo.
- Tobias Heinze recaps his Manslu adventure.
- Charlotti & Benny celebrate one year with Peloton.
- Tonal gets sued for $5 million.
- Andrea Barber has a new Christmas movie on GAC – Christmas On Candy Cane Lane.
- Taylor Swift Midnights classes get quietly added.
- The latest artist series with Mariah Carey.
- Peloton dropped several new class collections this week.
- Peloton Apparel has 7 Days of Surprises in store.
- Select Apparel styles are currently $19.99.
- Lanebreak has new levels and a new challenge.
- Birthdays – Tunde (12/5)
- All this plus our interview with Paul Swift!
Watch the episode here
Listen to the podcast here
Is Wal-Mart About To Start Selling Pelotons? Plus Our Interview With Paul Swift
This is where we normally chitchat, but I don’t know what we’re going to chitchat about.
We’re going to take a little trip. We took a trip. Life is insane. I can’t keep up. I’ve been a real b*tch all week.
It’s been very busy. We went to Branson for Thanksgiving.
We had a blast.
We had a lot of fun. Now we’re going to Philadelphia because we’re going to the MST3K wrap party for Season 13.
That will also be very fun.
We’ll probably post some pictures for people to see of us hanging out with the cast of Mystery Science Theater 3000. That’ll be fun. I bought us tickets to go to Tinsel Town.
I can’t wait to see what this is.
Whatever that is.
You talked it up, so now I have high expectations.
It was the coolest thing in Philadelphia that was within a reasonably priced Uber ride from our hotel.
We don’t want to be gallivanting all around.
That’s what the tales people have to look forward to. What pray tell do you have in store for people?
I know this is going to shock you but there’s a lot of Peloton stuff going on. In all seriousness, there’s some real estate that we need to talk about. There are some purchases that are confusing. We got to talk about the insider trading deal. I don’t know how to not discuss that. We’re also going to talk about the worst review I’ve ever seen, in my opinion. Dr. Jenn visits us.
The worst review I’ve ever seen was in a bathroom stall. It was maybe the most offensive thing I’ve ever read in a bathroom stall. It said, “Toy Story 2 was okay.” If you have little ones in the car, I apologize that they heard that. I was like, “What? Who could think such a thing?”
Seriously, who could? That is one of the best movies ever.
I was outraged. There is no such thing as a wrong opinion but in your case, sir, we will make an exception.
I think that’s fair and accurate. We also have a visit from Dr. Jenn. We talk about burnout. We have a listener who is approaching their marathon and freaking the F out. This is for you. Also, we have another listener who’s dealing with burnout. This is for you also. There’s a whole bunch of stuff going on with the instructors. We’re going to break all that down just us like we do every week. We do not have a visit from Angelo. Between his illness and my illness, we could not make our schedules match. I feel like an air traffic controller. We also have a big Tonal story. We got to chat about past guest updates that I’m super excited about, and all kinds of In Case You Missed It type of things.
Before we get to all that, shameless plugs, don’t forget we’re available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, iHeart, TuneIn. Wherever you find a podcast, you can find us. While you’re there, be sure and follow us so you never miss an episode. Maybe leave us a review. That’s always helpful. You can also find us on Patreon, Patreon.com/TheClipOut, where for $5 a month, you get all the episodes ad-free. For a little bit more, you get bonus episodes.
You also can find us on YouTube at YouTube.com/TheClipOut, where you can watch all of these episodes. You can sign up for our newsletter so you get all these links. I did not send it out because we were in Branson and it got away from me, but it will return, I promise. You can also find us on Facebook, Facebook.com/TheClipOut. While you’re there, like the page, join the group, and do all the things. There you go. Let’s dig in. Shall we?
It’s not often that our top story comes from Arkansas Online but here we are. Is this new information?
It is. Here’s the deal. I’m not even confident that this is the right peloton because it just mentions it. I want to read it specifically because it talks all about what this property is.
It’s about a hybrid workspace that’s getting built in Bentonville, Arkansas, which is the home of Walmart. It’s also interesting because the building itself if you see, it’s got ramps. It’s like a 4 or 5-story building. They have ramps that go all the way to the top so people can ride their bikes to whatever floor they work on every day.
It says the ledger building, which is the one we’re talking about isn’t the only big project downtown. The building we talked about isn’t even the one that this whole story is about. The 175,000 square foot 5-story Peloton office building is situated at 215 Northwest A Street and is still under construction, as is the new Walmart home office campus adjacent to the downtown as well. What now? They just,
Peloton is setting up camp in Bentonville, Arkansas. Is there another way to read that?
There are other Pelotons like there’s Peloton transportation, Peloton energy, and there are other Peloton companies. I don’t know what this is, but you can bet I’ll be keeping an eye out. I’m going to find it.
You only move to Bentonville, Arkansas for two reasons. One, you want to do work with Walmart and two, you lost a bet.
I’m going to Google Peloton, 215 Northwest A, Bentonville. Let’s see what we get. It’s called the Peloton Building. That’s interesting. Let me back up. There’s another. Bentonville Planning Commission approves development. It’s called the Peloton Parking Garage Project. It’s an office building. I don’t think this is necessarily about Peloton. This is so weird. It’s called Project Peloton. What are they doing down there in Bentonville? What is going on? Does anyone here live in Bentonville? We need you to talk to your city planning commission stat and get back to us.
Figure out what all this is about.
We need to know what is going on.
I will also say that seems like a lot of space, 175,000 square feet.
If it’s just an office building, it could be that it’s going to be plotted out for different things, especially if it’s not actually for Peloton.
For sure, if it’s not for Peloton. If it’s for Peloton, that seems like a lot of space dedicated to them. I will also say lots of vendors move to Bentonville so they can be closer to Walmart corporate. That’s a big deal for a lot of vendors.
It’s hard for me to believe that they would do that and leave New York City.
I don’t know if they would necessarily be leaving New York City, but just setting up some sort of satellite.
I don’t know. It’s weird. We don’t know what this means.
It could mean nothing.
It could mean that somebody in the planning commission likes Peloton.
It seems like you would either have a different name or the article would clarify not the one that you see on TV every ten minutes. Maybe in Bentonville, Arkansas, they are so well known that they don’t need to. The Financial Times has an interesting article about John Foley’s investment strategy. We could say we use the word strategy loosely. That’s not fair. It is a very common strategy. It’s also one that’s hard not to make a squeaky face at. It’s called the buy, borrow, die tax strategy and how that did not work out well for Mr. Foley.
Do you know much about the mechanics of the strategy?
I know a little bit. I’m not exactly a financial planning expert.Whether God created us or we evolved, whatever the deal is, we were not made to ride a bicycle. Click To Tweet
They know, don’t worry. We’ll have several posts on all the things. Actually, you won’t because if you get it wrong, everybody will ignore it. If I get it wrong, we get post upon post of all the things I got wrong.
The way I understand the buy, borrow, die strategy is it’s for people that have a lot of money. If you have a lot of investments and you have $1 million in stock that becomes $10 million in stock, and you want to take out $5 million in stock, you have to pay capital gains tax because you had an investment that increased. You don’t have to pay capital gains tax until you pull out money. What rich people do is borrow money from themselves because then they don’t have to pay it back because they can’t sue themselves. It’s like an investment.
How do you borrow it from yourself though?
I don’t know. This is what rich people do. They have a financial advisor and they borrow money from themselves.
They start playing shell games.
What happens then is you don’t get to pay it back because it’s your own money, but you don’t have to pay capital gain tax because you borrowed the money, get it in and cash out. You never pay it back and you die, and then you bequeath those assets to your kids.
They only get the assets, not the debt.
Now the capital gains thing resets. In the meantime, that $1 million that became $10 million might have become $20 million. They don’t have to pay capital gains on the $19 million. When it goes to them, it resets at what the market value is at the time of your death. Now they get to get $20 million with no capital gains, and then it starts all over.
That is pretty squeaky.
It’s perfectly legal.
I know, but it still can make me make a squeaky face.
The problem with this strategy, from what I understand, is that if you borrow too large a percentage of your investment and your stock drops, i.e. John Foley and the pandemic surge and pricing, then you don’t have enough to cover margin calls. That becomes a problem. If it drops too precipitously, you’re going to be six kinds of screwed. That’s the danger of this strategy.
I know that you said this at the beginning, but I want to be very clear that this is not a John Foley thing.
He did not make this up or invent this. I’m assuming, this is part of why he had to sell the Hampton House weeks after purchasing it.
The article certainly makes that.
That the stock is high, he takes out these loans, the stock starts to drop, he can’t cover, and then now it’s a mad scramble. It’s an interesting article for some insights into how not only he but the whole gilded class deals with money.
I can’t imagine ever being rich enough to have these conversations about ourselves. Only other people. We will never have to worry about this.
I’m borrowing $35 from my investment because we’re also borrowing from our Peloton portfolio.
I hope it all works itself out.
Moving along, Bloomberg Law is reporting that Peloton execs are facing insider trading claims over the treadmill. I love how in the last article, it’s like, “John Foley is so dumb, he doesn’t know how to invest money.” In the next article, it’s like, “John Foley is an evil genius and he stole millions of dollars.” This one is saying that this lawsuit makes the claim that the C-Suite or certain members of the C-suite knew that the tread death news was coming, and they sold off a bunch of stock before the story broke.
I don’t know if I’ll buy that.
It looks like on paper, that’s the timing. I seem to remember that at the time he sold the stock, the articles from things like Yahoo Finance and whatnot were saying that he was contractually forbidden from being able to sell his stocks until a certain time, and it hit that point and he sold some stocks.
They made it sound like it was an automated thing at the time.
They were like, “This is perfectly normal and reasonable. Don’t read anything into this. It is totally not a big deal.” Now, this lawsuit is trying to make it go back and be a big deal. This article also isn’t the best written because it says, “The first block of insider sale is worth more than $100 million allegedly came about a week before a three-year-old boy suffered a significant brain injury when he was trapped under a Tread+.” If they sold it before the injury, how is that insider trading?
Do they mean before the news broke?
What they mean, Bloomberg Law, is before the news broke. If you click through and read the court filings, that makes it clear that they did that between the incident and the information becoming public. I think this is the problem they’re going to be getting traction on this. Again, I’m not a lawyer or a financial expert. I peruse the legal document and it goes on and on about how they got this price surge during the pandemic.
The price surge wasn’t related to the success of Tread+. It was related to the pandemic and the success of the bike, and then the price collapse is not related to the Tread+ by and large. They took a hit when that story broke, but that’s not what caused it to drop 95%. What caused it to drop 95% was the pandemic ending and it wasn’t the hot and pretty sexy stock anymore. I feel like they’re going to have a hard time proving that this is insider trading when I don’t think you can peg the drop in the stock to the Tread+ incidents.
I agree with you 100% because I remember covering all of this at the time. I remember having the conversation. As a person, I don’t think he would do that, but I understand that people are like, “That doesn’t count.”
Having hundreds of millions of dollars on the line can change a guy.
It absolutely can. That is a very fair point but it’s like they’re taking a whole lot of things with the benefit of hindsight being 20/20 to put all these things in place and make it look like he’s an evil genius. I don’t think that was occurring because if he was that evil of a genius, he would’ve gotten away with a lot more money when he left Peloton.
You would think if he was that much of an evil genius, he wouldn’t have sold the Hampton’s house ten days after he bought it. When you juxtapose these stories, you’re seeing two very different narratives about who he is or what’s going on that are diametrically opposed. I honestly don’t think either one of them is.
I don’t either. I think it’s all about clicks. It’s so funny because there are so many people wanting to hate on Peloton right now and say how irrelevant they are and how they’re so awful. At the same time, all they do is print stories about them because they know that it gets traction. It’s craziness.
It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out. Based on their own argument, it seems like it’s going to be difficult for it to hold water because, by their own admission, stock shoots up because of the pandemic. The stock collapses because of the pandemic. That doesn’t have much to do with the Tread+. We shall see.
Also, Bloomberg Law, write better articles.
If it’s going to be writing law articles, you should know words are important.
The Verge has a review of the Peloton Row, which I will summarize as follows, “But I don’t like the price.”
There are a lot of people saying that. I saw a lot of very yucky comments. I am so exhausted by all the whining. I am not even going to pretend otherwise. I can’t, but here’s what I will say. I have always paid the full price for every item that has occurred. For Peloton, I bought the original bike at full price. I bought the Bike+ at full price. I bought the Tread+ at full price. I never sent it back and got my $4,000 back like everybody else did.
It’s still o over there about 40 feet away from me.
I paid full price for the rower. The only thing I’ve ever gotten for free from Peloton was the Guide, which I very much appreciate. People made this exact same argument about the bike when it came out. I remember reading dozens of articles about how it was overpriced and it was going to be a coat rack. All these people who are supposedly Peloton lovers and supporters are saying, “It’s $1,000 too high.” Based on what? Because you have a cheaper rower? You can go get a cheaper bike. I don’t understand your point.
This is the bane of my existence because my day job is concert promotion. I have never put a show on sale where someone didn’t tell me the prices were too high.
You don’t mean on sale as in a reduced price. You’re putting it up for sale.
We have a show coming right now, Jon Anderson from Yes. “These prices are ridiculous.” They started at $35. If you come to the family arena box office, there are no additional fees. You can get a $35 ticket.There are twice as many adjustments at the foot as at the rest of the bike. It's the only place that we're clipped in. We don't have a choice. Click To Tweet
This happens with your parking. This happens with your beer.
We saw a movie the other night and it was $20 a ticket to see a movie. Here you get to see a live human being on stage with a band, a rock legend, and it’s $35. Here’s the thing. People buy the tickets. Why should they sell it for less just to make you happy? Especially when it’s not going to make you happy.
You can’t. The other aspect of it is, specific to the row, people are saying, “If it was cheaper then I would buy it. The thing is they don’t need you to. You’re going to do it eventually, and they’re selling more than they thought they would. They’re not hurting on the sales of this rower. As much as you would like to believe otherwise and as much as you would like to tell everybody how you know everything, that’s not accurate. That’s not what’s occurring.
It doesn’t make sense to them too. Going back to the concert industry, year over year, ticket sales are down 30%. Ticket grosses are up 70%.
On the flip side, I do understand why people are a little upset that the original bike that they bought is now cheap. You can buy it so much cheaper now. I do understand that argument. A lot of people are saying this rower is going to go down dramatically too.
Maybe it will. That’s your prerogative. Sometimes that works for you and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes you can wait and a show will go on sale. Sometimes it’ll be Taylor Swift and it’s sold out. You didn’t get to go.
That’s just part of it, but people whine about that too. Many people whine about the Taylor Swift thing, “I didn’t get it and the tickets are too high and I want more.” She has sold every single concert in less than 24 hours. She’s doing okay without your sale.
At the end of the day, when you have more demand than supply, that’s what it’s going to look like. There’s nothing you can do about that. You can’t make that woman do more concerts. It is what it is.
It’s all about what’s more important to you. There are a lot of people that are complaining about this because it’s not that important to them, and that’s fine. Don’t get it then that’s okay. Also, those same people seem to think, therefore, Peloton should put all of their rowing offers out on demand so that they can use their existing rower or buy a cheap one to do that. I’m not saying that won’t occur. I think at some point, they will do that, but I fully support them not doing that for the time being.
For people who are early adopters and who are supporting the company by buying it first, there should be a benefit to spending that money and buying it first. I’m not upset about people that don’t want to get it, but then don’t be upset about people that got it and get to have the content and you don’t. If you don’t have money, you don’t have the money.
Eventually, they are going to put that out there on demand or on the app where you can reach it. I think that will occur. You got to remember, going back to the beginning when we first got our bikes, there was no app. If you wanted to ride the bike, you had to purchase the bike. This is no different. I think people are rewriting history because there are so many people that have come into the Peloton ecosystem that have come in a year ago or two years ago where they had access to everything for free.
It’s all they’ve ever known.
Not for free, but for one low price. It does not make sense for them to put a new item out on the market and charge the same fees that they’re charging for everything else. It doesn’t make sense. I believe they will at some point, but keep in mind they have already said, “We are going to have prices for gated content.” People keep asking what gated content means. It means exactly what it sounds like. There’s going to be some stuff that’s behind a wall that you can’t get to unless you pay a higher price.
I don’t think that that’s going to exist for the all-access members. I think that’s going to be for people who are specifically getting the app, and they’re going to have different tiers on that app or if you’re like a Row-only person, it’s X. If it’s a Guide-only person, it’s y. I don’t know what those tiers will look like because they haven’t said yet, but that is coming. Maybe there will be a Row-only option that you can get. Who knows?
Companies are good at figuring out what consumers value and then monetising it. That’s their job. Whenever there’s a shift like this, people get mad about it, and then it becomes a new normal and you can’t remember a time when it wasn’t like that. For instance, there’s an episode of The Carol Burnett Show. You can probably find the sketch I’m going to reference on YouTube.
It’s Tim Conway and he’s flying coach. The whole joke is how bad the services are in coach compared to first class. It’s really funny like his window is open. It’s a mess. Harvey Korman is in first class in the row in front of him. He can recline flat into Tim Conway’s lap. The thing is if you look at that sketch in a historical context, the reason it was made and the reason it was funny is because the idea of coach versus first class was a new concept. Now you’re like, “Of course, first-class costs more.” You can’t imagine it having another way. It’s just the way the world works.
That is a very good point. It’s good to keep that perspective.
Another way the world works in terms of monetization is through commercials. Coming up after this, Dr. Jenn is going to talk to us about how to deal with burnout when you’re so close to reaching your goal.
Joining us once again is Dr. Jenn Mann, licensed marriage, family and child therapist, and Sports Psychology consultant. She was a five-year national team member in rhythmic gymnastics and Sports Psychology for USA Gymnastics. It’s Dr. Jenn.
Here’s the question of the day. We have two people suffering from burnout. Mike is suffering. He hasn’t been on the bike or doing any exercise for three months and it becomes harder to motivate himself every day. We have Jackie. She says she’s celebrating also. She got through 2/3 of the Peloton marathon program and hit a wall. She’s struggling to just workout and her marathon is only twelve days away feeling so much sadness and disappointment in herself for not finishing the training. Her longest run was only 16 miles. She keeps telling herself that her mind will have to work harder than her body on game day, looking forward to being done so she can get back to working out for the sake of a daily goal.
First of all, she needs to give herself credit for getting two-thirds of the way through that program. I have looked at that program. That is a tough program with an enormous time commitment like a massive time commitment. First of all, before we do any program, I think we have to realistically evaluate, “Is this the right program for my lifestyle?” It’s one thing to be like, “Do I want to run a marathon?” Yes, you do, but the other thing is, “Is this the right time in my life to do it? Can I commit to seeing this all the way through in terms of how much I have to block out from my life?”
I did a marathon in 1999. I was single and I had no children. I could train all day and all night when I wasn’t working. I had a girlfriend who trained with me in the morning. We did a program where we did our long run. I had a year to do it like easy peasy in my twenties. Could I do that now? Not a chance. Crystal, you and I have something planned where we are going to be doing a very long race. In my preparation for it, I know that I can’t commit to the kind of long runs I did for the LA Marathon in ‘99.
I’m trying to figure out, “What do I need to do to avoid injury and be realistic with my life and my schedule and to accomplish that.” I think that’s where she came short. She did come short in terms of getting up to 16 miles. That’s a huge accomplishment. She should be patting herself on the back for that. I want to kick her ass and be like, “You ran 16 miles. Give yourself some credit, girl. That is amazing.”
Especially if she ran it the whole time, she’ll be fine on marathon day. It may not be a finish time that’s in the world records, but you’ll finish.
Crystal, you and I have talked about this. There’s a lot of research that says that running for more than an hour at a time is not good for you. There was the class that Ashton Kutcher did with that doctor, where he specifically talked about the rates of heart attacks among people who were training for over an hour at a time. You don’t want to do that. It may be a great thing. You may have prevented a heart attack. Who knows? You got to give yourself credit and say, “I’m going to spend the next twelve days psyching myself up for this run I’m going to do.”
I don’t believe in focusing on time. I did the LA Marathon in 5 hours and 20 minutes and was thrilled with it. I don’t care if I crawl it. I don’t care if I walk it. I just want to finish it. I think that a marathon in and of itself is a huge accomplishment and that she needs to give herself credit for what she’s doing and get her head in the right space. Start to spend a lot of time visualizing herself doing the marathon. I recommend Ross Rayburn’s long-run meditation. I would start doing that every night.
One of the things that he talks about in that meditation that I love is there’s going to be a point in your run where it gets hard. Here’s how you need to psych yourself up for it. Here’s how you need to prepare yourself. You can do this. I think that’s an important part of preparing for a marathon. For me, at mile 20 at the LA Marathon, I hit the wall. It was a big hill and I was like, “I can’t believe I’m doing this. What have I done to myself?”
It was almost like all of the sounds were louder. All of the colors were brighter. It was so intense and so overwhelming but I got through it. I think that she’s got to prepare herself mentally and stop being so hard on herself. Also to look at where else are you hard on yourself. Where else is this hurting you? Where else in your life are you missing your cool accomplishments because you’re so hard on yourself?
Moving on to the burnout situation for Mike. Mike has not exercised for three months. This tells me a few things about Mike. The program that Mike was doing was too much, too soon and too intense. Secondly, he was probably not taking breaks in his workouts in the bigger picture. I tend to look at my workouts over the course of one year. I tend to revamp my program. Once every 3 to 6 months, I do a consultation with someone who’s more knowledgeable than I am. I also talk realistically about what’s going on in my life, how much time I can commit, what my goals are, and what I need to do to keep me motivated.
I think that he failed himself psychologically because he didn’t change things up enough and didn’t take enough breaks. I tend to have a pretty firm like this is what I do all week, but then I try to now take anywhere from 3 to 7 days off, 4 times a year. I try to shake things up. When I find myself getting worked out, I try to switch things up. I try new instructors, new classes, and new modalities. When I don’t feel like running when my running partner is not available, I will try an outdoor run instead of an indoor run or try breaking up. Instead of doing one solid run, breaking it up into fun classes that I’ve been wanting to try but haven’t gotten around to.
Mike needs to slowly bring himself back into the fold. He needs to start small. He needs to not go, “Now I’m going to train 6 or 7 days a week. He needs to start twice a week, start 10 minutes, commit to not doing more than that, and then see how that feels after a week, then start layering. One of the great things about Peloton is you can layer. You can do a 5-minute workout. You can do a 10, 15, 20-minute, and so on and so forth.
People tend to go, “I was training 45 minutes of cardio before I got burnt out so now I need to start back there.” Don’t do that. You will injure yourself. You will burn yourself out. It will be a horrible experience. Look for classes that inspire you and excite you. Only the goodies that you’ve taken before that you’re like, “For me Robin’s Greatest Showman ride, if I’m not feeling motivated, I can always count on that one to get me going.” Keep a list of your fail-safe rides that you love or your favorite classes. I think that Mike needs to start slow and build back up, but not do too much.
Thank you so much for all of that. Until next time, where can people find you?
Logan Aldridge is going to be a tread instructor. I think that’s great.
I love him so much. I am delighted by this news. I’m so excited. He is so fun to take classes with. I’ve been so in the running mindset lately that this makes my day.
This is going to make him a big deal. He’s already a big deal. The “problem” is that he’s been doing all the adaptive stuff, which is great, but if you don’t have a need for adaptive, there’s no reason to go take a Logan Aldridge class necessarily. Having non-adaptive classes for him to teach in addition to it broadens his base. It will enable him to develop an even larger fan base.
I completely agree. I think there are a lot of people like myself. I typically do my strength on the Tonal. I hardly ever do strength with Peloton. It’s not because they’re not amazing. They’re all amazing instructors. It’s just I have my own thing that I’m doing. Because of that, I haven’t gotten to experience Logan as an instructor, and I am not the only person that falls into that category. There are tons of people that we know that don’t do strength at all that have never gotten a chance to. I agree with you, Tom. This is going to shoot him sky-high because he is so likable. If you want to get to know Logan on any real level, do it now before he blows up. You have about seven days.
The last episode of this round of LOL Cody is almost upon us. It features SNL’s Bowen Yang. It will be interesting to see how that works because they’re both very big personalities. In comedy, you have a straight man and a funny guy. You don’t typically have two funny guys.You just get to be you. That's how to approach bike fitting. Click To Tweet
He had that drag queen on. That’s a super big personality too. That worked. I don’t know exactly how all that works and I don’t claim to. What I do know is that comedians specifically have a hard time turning it off. There is no off switch. I think that your point is different in this case because he is a comedian. That’s not something that you can moderate in the same way.
A lot of them don’t. Some do. I’ve noticed the newer generation of comedians seems to be a lot more like that. If you listen to a Will Ferrell interview, he’s almost like a union employee. He’s like, “If you’re not paying me to be funny, there’s no need for me to do that. I’m just Will Ferrell. I’m just here talking.”
I prefer that because I like to hear interviews with people and get to know the real them.
Sometimes it can be exhausting. I always thought Robin Williams’s interviews could be exhausting because he was always on like that.
I still love Robin Williams but I would agree with that.
I felt like as he got older, he got better about that. It’ll be interesting to see how these two play in the sandbox together.
I have to say that Bowen Yang and I don’t see eye to eye. He doesn’t make me laugh.
From a comedy standpoint.
That’s what I mean. He doesn’t make me laugh like some of the other people in SNL do.
Although his Iceberg Titanic thing was genius.
That was the best skit he’s done by far. We haven’t watched the last few episodes. I don’t think so.
While we’re speaking of Cody, he’s taking some heat from Buzzfeed for his hate of Taylor Swift.
I don’t know if they’re just trying to make this a thing and it’s working or what.
They have a lot of posts where they reference him like he’s not a fan.
I’ve hardly ever taken a Cody class but he goes on and on according to all these posts about how much he hates her. They got a point. You like who you like, but their point, and I’m not saying I even agree with it because I’ve spent zero time thinking about this. The point they are making is, “You don’t have to keep saying it. We get it.”
He does create a lot of content. If you want to pull out a couple of things, it’s probably easy to do. It starts by like, “You don’t have to trash a successful woman.” I will say, for the most part, his complaint seems to be he just doesn’t like her music. It doesn’t seem to be directed at her personally. He’s not taking the tact of what a lot of Taylor Swift’s haters do like, “She dates all these people, unlike Mick Jagger who was a virgin until 63.” I’m like, “You’re such a hypocrite.”
If you don’t like her music, you don’t like her music. I’m baffled by that, but I understand it.
Not everything is for everyone and that’s okay.
There are a lot of things I don’t like. It’s just that I don’t have a public platform the size of Cody’s that I talk about it all the time.
You’re not going to be on Dancing with the Stars?
No, they didn’t ask. Can you believe it? I have zero dance talent and yet I still expected to be asked.
You’re also not a star. To me you are.
Thank you. I’ll be curious to see if anything else comes to this because it’s getting some traction.
The Swifties are coming at you hard.
I feel conflicted. I love Peloton. I love Taylor Swift. I know we’re talking about Taylor Swift later, but I feel like it needs to come up now. Here’s the thing. There was a big Taylor Swift drop this week on the Peloton platform from the Midnights album. It was on social media and then all of a sudden, it’s gone. It’s not anywhere on social media. They are not mentioning it at all.
They posted it and then deleted the post?
Yeah, because I was going to add it to the list. I had totally seen it. It’s gone. There’s nothing to add. I looked on the Peloton IG. I looked on the Peloton Facebook. Susie Chan had posted about it. I couldn’t find it there.
The classes are still out there.
They are all put in a little Taylor Swift collection that also appeared and got updated. It’s been there. I’m not saying that it’s connected or not. I thought it was really weird, especially in connection with seeing this. I was like, “Does this mean something?”
At the same time, it’s 1 instructor out of 190.
He didn’t do any of the classes. What would she care? I doubt it’s connected. It was just weird timing.
It seems unlikely.
Why else would they take down the social? It was weird.
I didn’t realize it had gone up and come down. My first thought was I know when her album came out, it got released at midnight and had no real fanfare. It was like, “By the way, here’s a new Taylor Swift album.” I thought maybe they were trying to replicate that with the class releases.
Maybe that is what they did. Maybe that’s what they were going for. They do have fun with stuff like that. Maybe I didn’t get it. That is entirely my fault.
To post and then take it back, that’s what seems weird. If they had never posted, I’d be more apt to subscribe to that theory. Emma Lovewell is featured in the latest issue of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine.
In the post, she says that she loves being from such a small supportive island community like the Vineyard. In the article, she talks about the importance of high school sports and performing arts, as well as some influential teachers she’s had in her life. They don’t seem to have it online.
You would need to actually fly to Martha’s Vineyard to get a copy. I’ll get right on that. She’s just a small-town girl from Martha’s Vineyard. By the time this episode is published, Robin will have made a big announcement on CBS Morning News. Is it Web3? Did she buy Web3? Does she own it now?
I have no idea what this is about. It’s going to be 8:00 AM Eastern, so 7:00 AM our time. I have no idea what this is supposed to be about. I’ll be honest. The only thing that occurred to me and it wouldn’t be a big enough deal, I wouldn’t think, to be on CBS Morning is every year she does her 31 for 30. You’re supposed to do 30 minutes of workout for 31 days. She does that every December and she usually does it midyear around June too. It’s a challenge. I cannot fathom that that would be big enough.
That’s a big enough thing for CBS Morning News.
She posted about her second Strong Baby book coming out in a month. She posted about that a couple of days ago. I don’t think it’s that.
It says, “Announcing the very thing I hinted at in this post,” and then it shows an arrow pointed out.
I couldn’t find that post. It doesn’t mean that I didn’t look hard enough. At any rate, I didn’t see it.Try to stay ahead of the curve, too, as you are aging because the sponge doesn't absorb anymore like it used to. Click To Tweet
You will have already known the answer when were talking about this. Marcel Dinkins has a new series coming out.
It’s called Taking the Hill. She always says this in her class, that you got to take the Hill. We always take the Hill. In this particular series, she said she’s going to be talking to fascinating people over the next couple of weeks, and talk about why we run it, why we run the hill, why we do the hard things, the challenging things, and the scary things. I am excited to see this because it also looks like it was filmed outdoors. She said that this was a sneak peek. If you’re not watching YouTube, it is her talking outdoors. It then says, “Here’s a little snippet,” and they show the people running from the waist down. You can’t see who is running. We will see very soon what comes out. The first episode is going to air on December 6th at 2:00 PM Eastern.
Alex Toussaint has partnered with Smartwater.
Did we talk about this already?
I don’t think so because this came out the day before Thanksgiving.
He was featured in the middle of Times Square on one of those big old billboards. It’s smart alkaline water. Smartwater is owned by Coca-Cola. What exactly is alkaline water? I don’t know. It has some kind of pH in it. It says 9+ pH. I don’t know what that means. Some people were like, “Alcohol.”
You probably use it like a tenny taste is my guess. When they’re like, “It’s got pH. It’s got this and that,” I’m like, “It’s just water.”
You’re always very skeptical of these things. Congrats to Alex for the cool partnership
Kendall Toole is featured in Wonder Mind talking about her mental health journey.
I think it’s a magazine.
I took it as a magazine or an online magazine. I know they also have a podcast, but this I believe was founded by Selena Gomez.
Also, this is a good article if you want to get to know Kendall more and you haven’t had a chance to hear her take on mental health. This one specifically talks about showing up on the days when you’re not feeling it. I forgot to pull the image of this, but apparently, there is some kind of trading card thing that somebody posted. Let me pull up my Facebook and I’ll read it to you. Topps is a brand name for tort cards.
Topps is the original trading card company. They used to only do baseball cards. They had the exclusive license for years, and the new companies come in like Upper Deck. I’m sorry. I used to work at a baseball card store.
That’s fine. I thought you might want me to talk about what I was going to say, which is that Topps Allen and Ginter baseball cards have a collection of baseball player celebrities and culture, and Kendall Toole is featured. That was posted in Kendall Toole’s Knockouts by Aaron Lavin. I’m sharing it from there visually on our screen, which is a terrible image. I thought that was interesting.
I know Topps had issues because, for years, they were the only baseball card company, and then you had these other companies start coming in. They all would license baseball players, but then it got weird because some companies could do the player’s images, but not the team logos. A few years back, Upper Deck got exclusive MLB, so nobody else could do baseball stuff. That got weird, and then they all had to scramble to come up with other things.
That was super interesting. I don’t care about baseball cards. I’m sorry. I barely care about that one.
Aditi Shah has a new Intro to Meditation.
It’s a new series. That’s what this is. It’s a program that you can do. It lasts for 3 weeks and it’s 6 days a week. It’s a total of 26 classes. It’s great because it helps you learn about mindfulness and the concepts behind that, and also practice it. That’s great and it’s awesome for Aditi to get that recognition.
Matty Maggiacomo has a new Theater In Thirty Instagram segment for people to check out. This time it spotlights the new play Kimberly Akimbo.
Do you know anything about this one?
Me neither, other than what I heard in Matty’s review, which was great.
I’ll be interested to see if he does any where he doesn’t like it.
I will too because he is definitely fond of the theater. It’ll be interesting to see.
Tobias Heinze has an update all about his Manaslu.
I think this is a recap of the first stage. If you get to the English part because he’s good about posting both so we don’t say things like the failed cardiologist. This is the hardest run of his life, 6 kilometers uphill, 1,100 meters, from 3,800 meters to 4,900 meters, and lovingly described as one of the highest vertical climbs in the world. “It’s beautiful here, but it’s also an absolute emotional and mental breakdown.” He then says, “Our Manaslu base camp stage,” because there were three stages. He did it all. He’s done but I think this is a recap.
I guess if you’re going up that high, you got to get there and you got to wait a minute to acclimate.
We don’t want anyone to get sick while they’re up there. How crazy. I’m completely entrenched in that whole thing. I wish we could talk to him directly because I would love to ask him so many questions about that.
It looks like a lot.
Seriously, he needs a documentary about that. It needs to happen. Somebody needs a documentary. Do a documentary. Somebody pull one out of your hat. That’s what I was going to say.
We have a couple of people celebrating a Peloton anniversary.
Charlotti and Benny are both celebrating their one-year Peloton anniversary. Happy anniversary.
Coming up after this, we will talk to you about who is suing Tonal for $5 million.
It’s not a good day for Tonal. They are getting sued by Hon Hai Precision.
This is a Taiwanese manufacturer. They are also known as Foxconn. They filed a breach of contract lawsuit Monday in the California Southern District Court against Tonal. They are seeking $5 million in unpaid invoices for goods and components delivered by the plaintiff. According to the complaint, demand for the home gym plummeted during the waiting days of COVID-19.
The counsel has not yet appeared for the defendant. That happened on Monday. As far as I know, when I looked it up now, I did not see any updates. I don’t think that Tonal has responded yet. I think they have until early December to respond. I know that that starts tomorrow. I think it’s the 3rd or something like that. I don’t know if that’s a typical 7 days in this case or it’s 30 days. Somewhere I read 7, but typically lawsuits are 30. I have no idea.
We don’t know how that works. The date on this is the 21st.
Maybe this is Monday before Thanksgiving.
It will be interesting to see what that is all about.
I’ve been getting a lot of messages about this because I think some people are going right to, “Oh my God, the world is ending. We’re all going to die. Tonal is closing its doors.” I’m not there personally, and here’s my logic behind this. We knew that Tonal was struggling because if they weren’t going to get acquired by somebody or merge with somebody, which so far has not happened. I got to assume it’s not.
The only other solution or reason that you would do that is if you were hurting for cash, you would fire all those instructors. Why would you fire all those instructors if you were not hurting for cash? There were massive layoffs besides just the instructors. It gutted their poorer infrastructure. We already knew they were struggling. The fact that they’re still putting out products, and I don’t mean just their programs and their live programming, but also they are putting out new programming.
There is a new thing that just launched where you can use your phone as a camera that works with the Tonal app that can help you be able to see in real-time. There’s a camera on Tonal that you can turn on during the time that you want it to be turned on, and the one on your phone. They work together to tell you, with all the sensors already in Tonal, that there are some form improvements you could make or you’re doing everything right.
You can see how you look side by side on the screen with the instructor. That’s a pretty major thing. They’ve had that camera built into the systems for a long time. I could be wrong. I’m not as confident about them not shutting their doors as I am with Peloton With Peloton, they’re way too big of an IP. Somebody would buy them. I still feel that way about Tonal, but it’s not as big. You have to recognize that and see that.
I feel like Peloton is safe because of their IP. Tonal is safe because of their tech. Somebody would want that technology. If push came to shove, they get scooped up so someone else could continue producing it because the tech is so different from anything else that’s out there.
I know a lot of people are concerned. They’re getting ready to buy a Tonal or they just bought a Tonal. I’m personally not worried yet. I have not seen anything that makes me start panicking or feel like I have a brick on my wall or anything like that. If that changes, I will be transparent and tell you. It is concerning that they haven’t paid their bills, but I don’t know the whole story. Every time you see one of these complaints, it’s like what we said with Daniel McKenna. This is one side of the story. We do not know the other side of the story. We can’t jump to conclusions, but there are people out there that are very much jumping to conclusions.
We have a past guest update from Andrea Barber, aka Kimmy Gibbler from Full and Fuller House.
I love Andrea Barber. She’s the best. She is starting in her first-ever Christmas movie. It’s called Christmas on Candy Cane Lane. It will be featured on GAC, the Great American Family.
It’s the new competitor to the Hallmark channel.
Candace Bure had moved over to that network. In the past, she’s worked with Hallmark and she’s producing movies over on this new network. I know that there are some differences in opinions. I love that Andrea Barber even says that. She addressed it head-on.
I’ve always wondered why she wasn’t in movies like this.
She’s perfect for them.
They love people like this for these sorts of movies. I always thought that she’d be great in one. I’m glad she’s getting to do one. It always seemed like an obvious choice. I was surprised that she hadn’t done one yet.
I love this. She says, “I love this movie for a lot of reasons. I can relate so deeply to her character, Ivy Donaldson, navigating divorce, single motherhood, learning to co-parent around the holidays, and grieving the loss of a parent. I saw a lot of myself in Ivy and try to bring all those complicated emotions to my character.” She is wonderful and I am super excited to watch this and support her because I love her.
The latest Peloton artist series will feature Mariah Carey.
We thought it was going to happen and there it is. It starts December 2nd. I wonder if they’ll play the Christmas song that she does.
Does she have a Christmas song?
I thought she did. How fun. I like how they started it off and then made it happen. It was all planned and that’s fun. Congrats to Peloton. That’s a good get.
Peloton has dropped some new class collections for people.
This is cool, the 5K Pace Setter. I am incredibly excited about this because they are classes that are 5K’s but they are based on different minutes. It goes all the way to 7 or 8 minutes up to 13 minutes per mile. Depending on where you feel like you are, you can take those different classes and also take them over time to see yourself get better. How cool is that? I love it.
One of the other ones that I’m super excited about is the Mobility Collection. This is something that I feel Peloton has not had a lot of focus on. They definitely have stretching classes, don’t get me wrong, but specifically calling out like, “Here’s a place for mobility directly.” I love that they added this collection and I’m hearing tons of good things about it. They also have Gratitude Meditations. You know I’m a fan of the meditations, as well as a Turkey Burn Collection, where all of the Turkey Burn classes were stored together.
Peloton Apparel has Seven Days of Surprises starting on December 1st.
They’re going to be dropping surprises. We will see what they drop.
Also, I don’t know how much of it is left, but their Cyber Sale had select apparel styles for $19.99 or less.
I got some good deals. It was stuff that I never would pay full price for, but these were some good sales. I got some stuff that was like $12.99. I was happy. I got eight things for $100. One downside was there was not a lot of men’s apparel included in the Cyber Sale. A little sad.
We have a couple of updates on the Lanebreak front.
New levels just dropped. There’s a low-impact 30-minute that has music like Charlie Puthe. Pop Tabata, a 20-minute level featuring Muse, David Guetta, Dua Lipa, Ben Kim and more, and then EDM Volume 3 and it’s going to feature Lizzo.
Also, there is a Lanebreak challenge for people.
First Lanebreak challenge. This one goes from 11/27 to 12/3. You have to get 300,000-plus points. Get to Lanebreaking. I’m super excited about this.
Finally, on birthdays, Tunde is celebrating her birthday on December 5th.
Happy Birthday, Tunde. I hope you get to have some ice cream.
This week’s interview will be up right after this.
Joining us on this episode is Paul Swift. Paul, how’s it going?
I’m doing all right. It’s a pleasure. It’s a privilege and honor to be with The Clip Out gang. Thank you.
We are excited you are here. For our audience at home, Paul is joining us in a different capacity than what we usually do. Paul is going to talk to us all about fittings and cycling, and how he got into it. Also, we’ll talk about this later on in the interview, but we’re going to talk about the fact that Paul helped me with my fitting and helped me get comfortable on my bike in a way I didn’t even think was possible. I didn’t have any major issues with my fitting, but it changed everything. Thank you so much for being here, Paul. We should start with how did you get into being able to fit people in cycling in general? How did that come to be?
Thank you for asking. If I may, first, I want to say my heart goes out to Mr. Mills, his family, his daughter and everyone. On December 19th, 2020, a truck ran a red light and almost killed me. I suffer from a traumatic brain injury. I feel for him and I wish them the best. I had to say that because it makes me a little emotional. Thanks for allowing me to do that.
I love seeing him on the show and watching his show. I’m just a dude who grew up in the Midwest and there happened to be a bicycle track in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where I grew up. It was a place where you told your parents you go hang out as kids. I went down there one time. It was usually like grade school, stop at the convenience store, and see if somebody buys a six-pack.
I watched the races and try to pick up chicks while I never did. I was like, “I could do that.” I borrowed a bike. Started doing bike racing in Kenosha with a stock bike program. Kenosha has one of the oldest operating bike racing in the United States. St. Louis also has one. It’s in pretty bad shape but it’s still there.
I didn’t know we had one.
I didn’t either but that sounds like St. Louis.
There used to be probably thousands around the country at one time with the turn of the century, 1890 or 1900. Madison Square Garden was originally built for bike racing, the original one before it burned down. It’s a big deal, the six-day bike racing in Europe. It’s called The American because we invented it.
A lot of people don’t realize how new bikes are in the grand scheme of things. A bike is almost an obvious invention that it’s hard to believe that they haven’t been around forever like 500 years.
You lead into the bike fitting thing pretty well there, Tom. Thank you. The reality is it’s only 2,550 years old. As people, whether God created us or we evolved or whatever the deal is, we were not made to ride a bicycle, but I think we can do a pretty good job as Crystal will testify. I got invited to a training camp at the Olympic Training Center in high school when I was fifteen. The next thing I know, they invited me to live and train there.
I left home at sixteen. I got to travel the world racing bicycles and representing the US and things. One of the challenges I had along the way is I have one leg shorter than the other one. Racing at that level was very critical. Back in the early 1980s, we didn’t know how to address it. We didn’t know what to do with it. I always had to tinker with my equipment. I had to modify things. I had to make pedals. I still have a little bit of a lift underneath my cleat, but I had to modify the equipment. That got me to dive into it.
That kept evolving. One day I’m at a bike race sitting next to a guy named Dory Selinger, who’s in the Paralympics. He’s like, “What do you do with all the other pedals that you’re modifying? You’re probably throwing the parts away.” I went, “Keep them in a box.” He goes, “Can I have them?” I was a poor bike racer. For me to give something and to do something for somebody was such an honor. That kept going on.
Much to my mother’s chagrin, we figured out why when she would shorten my pants as a kid. Why one was always different from the other one. When I was in summer marching band, how it didn’t hit the laces on one but it did in the other because I found out I had a shorter leg. The challenges of dealing with that as an elite athlete and all the lifting, the squats, the training, and how to address that was probably the biggest thing that led me to bike fitting. It takes messed-up people to be bike fitters.
There are probably a lot of things that are like that. They got to figure things out for whatever quirk of their own physicality or existence, and then they realize, “This is applicable to other things.”
There was nowhere to go to learn it. Fast forward, I came up with some products and patented a bunch of things. I made a pedal that moves in and out. It’s tilted, which you know what that tilt is. It rotated and it would raise and lower. That’s not four f, but the next thing I knew, I was teaching by fitting all around the world. I was living in a garage, on a couch, with no hot water, and no heater in LA doing bike fits on the sidewalk across the street from the LA Equestrian Center down the street from the studios and all this money.
That right there though shows the brilliance of your adaption that you could get a horse to ride a bike.
It’s interesting because I went across the street and watched the dudes like the furriers because I didn’t know where to go. I tried to go everywhere to learn what to do with bike fitting. I watched those guys, like, “What did they do?” That was mostly to get the hoof from the ground to meet flat. That’s not a big difference from what we did. You take what your environment gives you. I happened to be there in Glendale, California.
What made you think, “If I watch this, it’s going to apply to bike fitting?” I wouldn’t have even made that connection.
It started with the wedge. It was a friend of mine’s idea originally because he’s like, “Do you ever notice how pedals wear crooked?” I’m like, “Yes because I work on pedals all the time. They all wear it an uneven thing.” There’s a wedge inside. There’s a shoe and you have that. There’s the cleat and you can see there’s a wedge in there. I didn’t know what or why the pedals were wearing crooked. Long story short, then I ended up developing a tool that is sold to the medical world and everything around to measure these 4-foot vars and valgus, which is the tilt of your foot.
That’s years of banging your head against the wall. I thought at the time, I would do these wedges and bike fitters would use them, then people would say, “I have foot pain or knee pain. Will that help?” I’m like, “Yes,” then I looked at them. I’m like, “You look bad. You need way more than a wedge.” That’s when I realized bike fitting in general was pretty inadequate. It wasn’t serving, so I buried myself in that garage and developed an entire system called the Bicycle Fitting System, which was nominated in Bicycling Magazine as one of the most innovative products in the bicycle industry. I’ve taught bike fitting and I’ve sold stuff all around the world. I was looking at my Instagram and there in Europe and Belgium was my product, and some guys teaching it. I couldn’t have imagined it back then.
Can you do anything like that for fitting me on my couch, so I can watch TV more efficiently?
That’s interesting because I got into fitness then when I was doing a study at Auburn University. I do things like I’m pretty crazy. I can do the Peloton bike but I started with the RevMaster, which is a bike I designed. I would put it in front of the person sitting on the couch. I’d pick up their feet and stick them into pedals and go, “Start pedaling now. There are no excuses. You’re watching TV. You’re going to get five bits of pedaling in.”
I work with anyone and everyone. I had an occupational therapist. She was a world masters cyclist. She came in and helped me a lot with the upper body and hand connections. Anywhere you touch a bike is where I spent a lot of time. I sought out people from all different places because here I am, I have this course and these medical people want to teach it. They’re like, “Where are the credentials?” I’m like, “I’m just a dude who teaches this.” It’s hard sometimes to get it accredited.
That’s always the problem when you’re at the forefront of something. It’s like there isn’t an accreditation for something that you’re coming up with on the fly.
You’re building the plane.
I’ve developed several products. The second and third are a lot easier. People say, “What do you mean?” I say, “Let’s look at basketball.” Dr. J created a highway. Michael Jordan created a super highway. You’re developing the wedges and twenty years later, lots of people are copying it and stuff like that, and the patents are up. It has come a long way since I designed the RevMaster. I designed all of my fitness equipment. That was much easier to come into the industry later because I could see what was up with the spinning bike behind me and fix all the problems. It’s not that you’re negative, but when you’re competing in something, you’re picking at the negative. I developed the RevMaster and that got me into the fitting in the indoor cycling side because the bikes didn’t fit that great.
At what point did you stop being the athlete side of things? You glossed over that.
I got to race all around the world and that was pretty cool for a little dude from Kenosha, Wisconsin. I feel like I’d go back to the bar. The bar is still like I was there yesterday. In 1996, I quit and in 1998, I finally stopped racing because the carryover for two years of that training wasn’t working anymore. I was racing for Team Shaklee and I was packing for a bike race. Packing for a bike race is such a pain, especially on the track. You have a track bike to pack or a road bike to pack and extra wheels. That sweat bead went down my back. I was like, “I’m done.” I called up Frank and I said, “I don’t want to do this last race.” He goes, “That’s fine. Don’t worry. Thanks for everything.” That was the day I quit at that level.
You fell out of love with it.
I knew I was there. I’m lucky as an athlete because I found bike fitting or it found me. Many of my friends quit. I was a mess and I knew what I wanted to do.
When you created all these products, you’ve created so many of them. People have probably seen your products and don’t even know about them. That’s one of the pedals.
Chances are if you’re taking a spinning class or an indoor cycling class, you probably touch something I developed. I patented the one-side SPD and the other side-hook pedal. I licensed this. This is how I got into the Peloton because there were a bunch of people infringing on my patent, Flywheel and SoulCycle, you name it. That’s how I became known everywhere with these other people. This was one of my coolest ones. This part of it here is if we put a basket and you go like that. It pops right out. I licensed the spinning. Of course, spinning files for bankruptcy.
I’m curious, when one of these companies like SoulCycle or whatever infringes on your patent, is it typically they created something that was similar accidentally or are they like, “We’re going to do this and we’ll see if we get busted?”
In my case, most of them saw the pedal and thought of the idea and they sold it because I’m a small individual dude who patent design. I didn’t project and advertised to the entire world I had this. I would usually start with a simple phone call or an email going, “You are infringing on my patent.” Most of them are BS. The people who so-called sold and designed the first Peloton bike were the biggest BS I’ve ever dealt with in my life.
To be clear, you’re talking about the Valencia dude.
Yes. It’s a group because they did the licensing for SoulCycle and Flywheel takes the cake. Swing Fitness were tough in the sense that they would always take their time. You’d send them an email, it’s six weeks later. Swing Fitness was pretty cool and they became Nautilus or whatever. They always paid. They were always pretty nice. I thanked them for being pretty cool because they were big enough to blow me off and tie me up on the court. Maybe they realized it was cheaper to pay my royalty.
What length of time does it take to make a patent?
I’m just a guy who does them in a room and I go hire an attorney. I started in LA and I finally found an attorney that sat down and talked to me. The first time I hired an attorney, I was nervous. I’m like, “What’s the attorney telling me to do?” It’s like, “I’m paying this guy.” Once I got to the point where I’m paying the attorney, “You need to explain this to me like I’m twelve years old. I need to understand all these stupid words like along parallel access, anything that ultimately changes what.”
I would lay out the patent all over my room, all over the place, and I would go one by one. I’d go back to the drawing. That’s my method. There are people who can read patents and they’d get the words. I have to see the picture in the words. This patent took almost five years because the first attorney I had didn’t do a very good job. I’ve had some take two years and it all depends.
Does it take a while to get approved once you file?
That’s that. You file. I personally never had one that doesn’t come back. It was rejected or something because you have all these claims. I have one here. This is the only thing I didn’t get patented in my entire life. It is the most unique thing I’ve ever done. Go-figure. If there are Speedplay users out there, you can pop this into your hook pedal and you could ride Speedplay.
For those of you who are not watching, Paul is showing us all of his cool stuff.
I was thinking that you’re showing us some cool stuff but people may not know that you’re showing us some cool stuff, so I explain what that is.
I’ll describe it a little bit more then. The pedal I was showing was something that many people probably have ridden. Everybody rides a pedal because every bike has a pedal. Whether you have the Look Road or the SPD Mountain, you could clip into that pedal. There’s a brand up there called Speedplay and I made an adapter that will fit into the pedal. This thing here, for those who are watching.
You can bring your Speedplay shoes to the class. I made about ten of those and I only got one pair back, which was a good sign because they were like, “I’m not giving it back.” That was the only patent I didn’t get in my entire life. There are others that I didn’t necessarily expect to get but I thought I needed to. I thought I needed to position myself that way.
How did you get into working on Peloton bikes specifically?
I first met Tom Cortese then I met Jamie Beck in 2013.
It’s been some time ago.
In 2014, I talked to them because they worked through Valencia and I let them back in to buy some of my pedals in 2014. I don’t do this as much but I surf Kickstarter now and then. They had a Kickstarter in November of 2013. I was like, “I’ll pay attention to them.” I bought a water bottle, so I would get the emails. They came into Lamont’s Fitness office once. It was Tom or maybe Jamie. I think it might have even been John.
I met all those guys early on. They used to show up at a trade show with one bike and you’re like, “There’s no way this is going to make it.” They kept showing up. They’re in LA looking at a warehouse and my friend calls, Chucky. He goes, “Pauly, these Peloton guys, should I rent to them? I don’t know who they are. I don’t know if they have any money or not.” My buddy has 70 or 80 warehouses in LA. Peloton outgrew his largest warehouse, which was $80,000 a month.
We all know Peloton grew and blew up. Can you imagine how big that warehouse was and they all grew it? I had a lot of little weird connections. When I first saw it, I was like, “They copied my belt with the tensioner.” I looked at it like, “Why did they do the seat thing like this? This looks like the cyclops Ceres.” You folks don’t even know what that is. That was a bike before the Peloton. It looks like their seat slider. I went to try and get one but it’s cold in the garage. I’m in Spokane, Washington, so that was one of the things.
I looked at it like, “Those handlebars need to adjust. Why the hell is that monitor on the bars?” That’s the last place in the world I would put it. By the way, I’m going to predict now, the future one day, that monitoring handlebars will be separated for whatever it’s worth. Being an equipment guy, not as much a software guy, picked at it. I then came up with this.
This doesn’t mean anything but I’m holding to this little clamp that I made for the RevMaster. The RevMaster handlebars were similar to the Pelotons in a way. They were like these things but they would slide and I design these. If you’re watching, I made this little clamp so you could put any set of handlebars you want on the RevMaster. I put their computer on it. I did this back in 2012 or something like that. When I saw the Peloton, I’m like, “If that bike makes it, I’m going to make a product to make it better.”
Here it is now, the bar zoomer. That’s to bring the bars closer for a lot of people like yourself, Crystal. This is where I started getting into Peloton. I was like, “A lot of people don’t fit the bike very well because it doesn’t fit smaller people that well.” Therefore, I ended up gravitating toward the Peloton Shorty Tribe. I combined all those things with my car accident and selling the business, this and that, and the recovery. I’m a big Gary Vee fan. I said, “My first year of recovery, all I’m going to do is hand out on the forums and give away everything I can for free.”
I gave everything I had for free away as part of my rehab for my brain. That’s why in some of the forums, people know who I am. They don’t know my background yet. This would be the coming out. I went incognito and I send Crystal an email and she doesn’t reply. Finally, I hit her up on LinkedIn. She doesn’t reply. I send her another email and she doesn’t reply. Finally, she replies. It was like, “What do you want? How long is this going to take?”
If it makes you feel better, she does the same stuff to me.
In my defense, you were offering to give me a fitting and I didn’t feel like I needed one. I was like, “Why do I need a fitting? I already ride my bike. I’m fine. What are we going to do?”
After I said, “I can take ten minutes but most people I talk to, we spend like an hour on a phone because I can talk.” We spent about an hour on a phone and it came out that there was somebody else in the forums with my same name.
I was confused because I thought you were one and the same. I was very confused by how you sounded very different in your emails than you did online. I was completely confused about your identity.
A Peloton guru, Jude Howard or whatever his name is, introduced the two Paul Swifts once. I swear I haven’t met him in person but we did a few posts like, “You have the same name.” There was an actor, Paul Swift. He died of age. There was the race car driver. I met the artist at a party. We were introduced to each other. It was pretty cool. We exchanged products and stuff. It’s not the most unique name in the world.
No, it’s not. It’s interesting because you would think that it’s not the most unique. It’s so common that there are that many people. It caught me off guard. I will say that and we should probably take this time to transfer into you did a fitting. It ended up being an hour and a half or so. I’ve never done a bike fitting for the Peloton. I’ve done a bike fitting for my road bike before.
You did? Can I ask where you went?
It was a local cycling company.
I understand but can I ask where you went?
I’m getting there. Maybe it’s called something Hub. It’s the one in Webster Groves. I always have to google it but that’s where I ended up buying my road bike. They were great. They helped me with my fitting, but it’s a very different experience on the Peloton than it is on a road bike because they’re focused on different things than you were focused on. We spent a lot of time, and probably because some of those things don’t change. I had to make sure that the seat was up high enough, which you did too but they focus on the seat being high enough right off the bat. We eased into that because of the cleats and because of those changes which you don’t have on a road bike in the same way.
Why I asked where you went is because I know most of the bike shops in this country and most of the people. It’s my industry. I can name a thousand bike shops, who their fitter is, who the manager is, who this is. That’s not a shop that was trained at that level. If you went to Maplewood, for example. Those guys would’ve given you a full-on bike fitter. If you went down to CycleX or whatever down in Columbia. Those guys are trained at a whole other level.
They would’ve done all those things at the feat that we did plus everything else. They might have pulled out things like this. This is a stem I made that you can adjust and put on the bike. I made it so you could do it very quickly. This goes onto the bicycle and you could push a button and make the stem longer and shorter. I’m guessing they didn’t pull that out either. You got sort of a fitty.
It helped a lot. Let’s put it that way.
I look at it this way. If you are thirsty and I give you half a glass of water, do you feel better? My service, I try to give you the full glass.
We did talk about that too. My understanding is that there are a lot of bike fitters that do virtual fittings for the Peloton now. One of the things that you do that not all of the fitters do is focus on the cleats and the foot.
If you think about it, there are four adjustments on one cleat. Most of us have two legs and two feet. If you take both of those, that’s eight adjustments. If you don’t have a leg length, that’s eight adjustments. The seat goes up and down four F. That’s two. You can play with the tilted angle or slide it forward as we did. It’s potentially three. The handlebars will only go up and down, so that’s four.
There are twice as many adjustments at the foot as there are for the rest of the bike. It’s the only place that we’re clipped in. We don’t have a choice. In other words, if your saddle is a little low, you’re ambulant. You move around. You slide forward, slide up, change resistance, stand up and sit down. The reason the bars are bigger on a stationary bike is because it’s supposed to fit a lot more people, but you can put your hands out. You can put your hands back, but on the pedals, that’s it. You have one place.
It’s what you do 80 times a minute, minute after minute, 60 minutes after 60 minutes, 3 or 4 times a week, month after month. That repetitive placement where you’re locked into one place is the challenge because most injuries or discomforts in cycling occur with overuse over time with a slight misalignment.
I thought it was fascinating. You have to remember I am completely non-mechanical. If you tuned in to the shows, you already know that.
Tom did an amazing job with the tools.
I just held the camera.
You tightened some things.
I tightened the screw.
When I first got my Peloton bike, I had never seen a cleat before in my life. There were no directions. I just slapped the cleats on there and had never changed them ever again since then. I got a new pair of shoes whenever the black set came out. I just slapped him on there. I hadn’t thought about it other than that.
You’re not alone though. Peloton did so many wonderful things. Think about it. You had never looked at this before. How many people have a pair of cycling shoes now that never had a pair? That introduces things too. It introduces opportunities for me. As much as it has done a wonderful thing, where do you put that cleat? That’s a good question.
It took years to develop what I did and there are videos all over the net that are not so good. I’m going to hold back. It’s challenging. It is very challenging. I love working with somebody who’s never done this before. I love that beginner. I’ve worked with Tour de France. I was working with whatever. My heart goes out to somebody who gets on a bike and loves it. That’s what drives me.
You’re not alone. It’s tough. It’s challenging and a lot of fitters don’t cover it. That’s why we did you in one session, your fit rather. I’m probably the only guy that does two sessions because we do one and let you ride for a while. We got one tiny tweak to do with you yet and then come back because you can’t do it in one. You just can’t. Not in my view and do it, and get that full glass of water.
You explained to me the reason that you typically do two sessions. It is because you want the person to be able to ride for a while after you’ve made some adjustments, and then go in and do more micro adjustments where there are small changes. You did some of that while I was riding. It was surprising how much lighter my feet felt after we did those changes. I was surprised by that. I honestly thought, “I just ride a bike. What are we going to do? You get on the bike and you ride.” It was a huge difference.
That’s what I strive for and I’m flattered. I’m so glad to hear it. I like to use the words lighter, which is slightly different than some of the words I hear, but they’re right. That leads to, what is a bike fitter? What should it feel like? You just want to ride your bike. People ask me to describe, “What should a bike should feel like?” I have a different definition than some because I say, “It’s whatever you want it to be.” They’re like, “What do you mean?”
I go, “If you’re taking a Peloton class, all you want to think about is the Peloton or maybe you’re high fives.” I know it’s hard to reach a screen and we’ll get to that too. You don’t want to think about, “My knee or my foot or my this,” or if you’re riding a bicycle to the coffee shop with your friend. It’s supposed to be about the bike ride. When you have discomfort, it takes away. Whether you’re racing at the world-class level and you’re thinking about this thing. Some guys want to kick your ass or you just want fun and enjoy. My goal is to take that all away so you get to be you. I want you to be you. That’s how I approach bike fitting.
It was surprising to me not only how much lighter my feet felt but also, I have always had pain in my left knee. I don’t feel it so much when I’m cycling. I feel after I have cycled, but that knee pain has been there for years. I didn’t even attribute it to having anything to do with the bike, but when you changed how my foot attached to the pedal and where those cleats were and the alignment of my knee changed, it doesn’t hurt my knee anymore. That’s crazy to me because I didn’t think that that was even fixable.
I’m glad you brought that up. That is part of my two-fit-two-session thing because we’ve been doing it forever. We clip in and go, then we’d have to clip out. What becomes normal isn’t necessarily good but it’s like, “It’s just the way it is.” People are like, “You get used to the saddle.” That’s a bunch of BS. I have a little device right there. I’m working with a couple and I forget we’re in Michigan. I’m sending them to a bike shop where they have this little device right over here to change the saddle quickly to try saddles.
It’s like, “No, it’s not supposed to hurt. It’s not supposed to be.” You got to get used to the idea that if you have it worked out, fifteen minutes is a lot. That’s you. The bike fit is supposed to be taken care of. It’s not supposed to hurt and it’s not supposed to. A lot of times we’re waking you up or introducing things. Therefore, it’s like, “I’m riding in a new position. I have a new awareness.” Now in a couple of weeks, it’s my job also to help you to be able to articulate what you’re feeling because we just go. It’s always been that way. We all type on a QWERTY keyboard. It’s stupid and slow but we all do it. You folks know the history of the QWERTY keyboard.
It’s deliberately slow because, on the old mechanical typewriters, they had arranged the letters in a different way. If you would type too fast and the little arms would get all tangled up. They deliberately structured a keyboard that would slow you down.
In 2022, we still do it. Cycling is full of a lot of those traditions. You do it this way. You do it that way. I’m guilty of them because I’m an old-time cyclist. I had to learn those and be open. It was awesome. I love seeing new people that are like, “That’s how, yes.” If that’s still happening to somebody, I haven’t done my job. I haven’t reached everybody. I want everyone to feel that.
I have to say with the seat. I still think that there is a time period that you need to have your tush toughened up like the first few rides. That’s always going to happen. I don’t care what seat you have. People mistake those two things. It should not still be happening weeks later to be clear.
I’m glad you clarified that and I touched on it but I probably should elaborate a little bit more. For example, my weight goes up and down. Don’t tell anyone but when I’m heavier, my butt hurts a little bit more. It’s not like one spot. It’s like, “I’m heavier.” By the way, the secret to that is to put more resistance on so you’re lighter. When I’m lighter, I feel better on the saddle.
It’s like you have to get in shape because if you’ve never worked out, which is so many Peloton people, the wonderful thing they did is they’re in homes and people are like, “Fifteen minutes is killing me.” Yes, it is. You’re going to have to work your way up. You have to differentiate and sometimes it’s not easy. It’s a great point you brought up.
Would you say that you use all the different devices that you’ve created with all the different fittings that you do? Are there some that you only have to use with some people? How does that work?
There are some of the basics and what I teach in my 101 class. First of all, I treat everyone the same. It doesn’t matter whether you’re racing in Tour de France or you’re brand new. I’m a big rudiments guy. I played the drums. You do scales, I should say, if you were another instrument. When I’m racing a bicycle, I was solid on the basics. The basics are in pretty much every fit. Does everyone get a wedge? No.
For example, I was working with this couple and the guy has an unusual foot and he doesn’t get one. As a matter of fact, he bought a shoe that has it built in and I had to recommend it. I said, “There’s no way around this.” I worked with a gal, Tanya. She’s a big fan of yours. She has an anomaly though. She’s way off the charts. We had to put in insoles and heal things, so we did way more than most people. I’m now discovering with you when I was looking at the notes like, “Your foot’s a little bit out there too.”
You send pictures of my feet. They’re all funky.
For some people, it’s like 30 minutes, done. For yours, we combined it. Now I got to think about it. I like to have the opportunity to digest that work with it and we’re going to do a couple of small tweaks. That’s the way it is. It’s across the board. The basics are all the same. I developed that app where I show you the angles. That’s used in every fit.
What about your Peloton leaderboard name? What’s that so people can follow you?
It makes sense.
My product is under pedal jam but somebody else had that name, so It’s CyclePoint.
We always ask people this but I would think you’d have a good take on this. No pressure, but what is your advice for people just now getting a bike like brand new users?
I have put together some literature. It’s free like where to get the seat going and where to get the handlebars going to start. Are you asking where to get a bicycle?
No. If someone just got a bike, what advice would you give them so they have the best experience?
I have a free starter thing that’s illustrated step by step because before we get to the fit, the seat has to be somewhat close. The handlebars have to be somewhat close. I’ll tell everybody to put their cleats all the way back. I have that. It’s on some forums. I need to have that available on my website at TheCyclePoint.com as a free download. I’ll email it to anybody but I’ve done that because you’re right. We need to know where to start. When I look at it, some people are like, “How did you get here?” I was like, “I got in and went.” It’d be nice if you could do that, but it’s probably the most adjustable piece of equipment we have. Even a piece of gym equipment. Maybe you raise and lower the little leg thing. You can still do it but the bikes got a lot of adjustments.
When we were going through that whole process and Crystal was raving about how different it felt when it was over, I was surprised because, in the grand scheme of things, we hadn’t done that much. I was like, “This seems like a lot of BS to go through.” I don’t feel like we did all that much, but with how she reacted when she started using her bike afterward.
You know me, I can’t make up stuff like that.
If she thought it was a whole lot of nothing. She’d have told me it was a whole lot of nothing, then she’d come up with a polite way to blow you off.
She doesn’t answer my email, so I thought maybe that was it. You are right because this to here, that’s only about 4 or 5 millimeters. It doesn’t seem like much but that’s huge in the effects of what it does to the cyclist. If you move the cleat in and out, it only goes media lateral about 3 or 4 millimeters.
When you had her put in the wedges, I’m like, “What does this do?”
It’s not that thick but it makes a huge difference.
People hear wedge and they think thick, but it was like three pieces of paper stacked on top of each other.
There it is. That’s the thickness right there. It’s not very thick.
I tell people I do hocus pocus voodoo witchcraft. A lot of people need to put these spacers on. Some of the pedals, you’ve seen it with their knees way out. There’s not enough room even on the cleat, so you need to put this spacer on. You got to widen the pedal even more. You’re not a candidate for that. Your knees were inward and more in alignment, but a lot of people need that. I probably do that a couple of times a week to somebody who’s male or female. Their knees are out and sometimes one leg. They have to get that pedal even further out. In the grand scheme of things, it’s like, “There’s this whole body,” I move this one thing 5 millimeters.
You would not think that it makes that much of a difference.
Remember, you’re clipped in 80 times a minute. There’s probably nothing we do that fast in our lives, minute after minute.
I don’t like to brag.
You’re in way better shape than I am, but minute after minute, 3 or 4 times a week, 12, 14 or 15 times a month, month after month, and these add up. That’s where the millimeters and stuff are. On outdoor cycling, you can have what I call acute injuries. Usually, you crash. Most injuries take a little time. I like to try to stay ahead of the curve too as we are aging. I hate to say it. When I hit 40, a lot of my friends that rode bicycles are like, “This hurts now.” I’m like, “Yes.” I can’t drink a twelve-pack of beer anymore either. The sponge doesn’t absorb anymore like it used to. The cells don’t bring the water back in like they used to. I like to do this to prehab so you can avoid rehab.
I like that.
That’s a good one. Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to join us. Before we let you go, remind everybody where they can find you and find all this information, and get something for themselves if they’re so inclined.
One thing is if the handlebars are hard to reach, we have the bar zoomer. It’s not even on the website yet. I’ve only sold it through the forums but TheCyclePoint.com. My Twitter and Facebook are @AskTheFitter, and in some of the forums. You can see me all over the place. It’s AskTheFitter or Paul Swift. I will try and help anybody I possibly can. I’ve dedicated my life to this. My car accident has helped me do that. I get to live in a basement and do this all day and talk to cool people like you guys.
Paul, we appreciate it. Thank you so much for your time.
It was my pleasure.
I guess that brings this episode to a close. Until next time, where can people find you?
You can find me on Twitter @RogerQBert or on Facebook at Facebook.com/tomokeefe. You can find the show online on Facebook.com/TheClipOut. While you’re there, like the page, and join the group. Of course, don’t forget our YouTube channel at YouTube.com/TheClipOut. That’s it for this one. Thanks for tuning in. Until next time, keep pedaling and running.
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