Official: Clydesdale Challenge 2016 an Unmitigated Success


There were hula hoops at Legacy Bicycles following one of our Hump Day pre-work rides. To be fair, the hoops were for run drills for our youth triathlon team TriPOWER. It only seemed natural that I’d give ’em a go in standard ShirtlessShutt fashion; that is: No Shame!

If the challenge was supposed to motivate me to eat smarter and keep daily exercise at the forefront of my thought process, then yes, it’s a complete success. Am I winning? NO. Am I losing weight NO. Has ANYTHING changed since my last post? No! Well, Yes and no …

It could just be the changing seasons, the scent of orange blossoms or the longer days (yet the nights are longer so ….) but I’m feeling better. Running is a tad easier. Cycling is more fun. And eating cleaner, healthier and less-voluminously is coming to me more naturally. Again.

It’s still a day-to-day battle if not meal-to-meal. Continue reading


Springing Forward to a New Focus


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Kaden & I enjoy a 22.5-mile ride with friends Sunday morning in Sebring.

And just like that, it’s mid-March. Daylight Savings Time. Spring Break has come & gone. Clydesdale Challenge 2016 is 2/3 completed. Before I lay it all on the line about how I and others are now approaching the Challenge let me first announce the current leader board as it stands as of midnight March 13, 2016.

  1. Matt is in 1st Place with 243 total point (240.5 of those points are from what we are calling “running.”
  2. Laura is in 2nd Place with 128 points (111 points from “actual” running and the rest from about 200 miles of cycling).
  3. I am barely in 3rd Place with an embarrassingly low 81 points, of which about 45 percent are from CYCLING NOT RUNNING!
  4. Dusty is bringing up the rear, convincingly, with 65 points.

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Mark 1:15

World Exercise Champ.jpg

One Down, three or 11 to go …

Maybe the post title is a bit dramatic. But, time is running out.

My exercising has been been minimal this month, despite jumping head-first into a year-long challenge against the maniacal mother of challenge seekers. I’ve played nice far too long, regarding my friend Matt. Yes, we agreed that walking would count as running, so long as it was a concerted exercise effort and not walking around the office at work or, walking around Walmart or the mall, shopping. And, you  have to wear a heart rate monitor (chest strap) as part of the aforementioned “concerted exercise.”

So, my understanding of the challenge was that any walk/run had to be at least half a mile as well. The whole idea was that we, he and I, are not avid runners and some walking might be necessary for recovery between runs or even WHILE running. Matt leaped well ahead of the competition (there’s four of us in total) within the first two weeks of January. Potentially hurting himself in the process but logging long, lumbering miles nonetheless.

And I defended him, to a fault.

I agreed to the rules, which are in writing and posted elsewhere on this blog.

But, when Matt attended a flea market known as Florida Flywheelers a couple weeks ago, and logged a 10-mile walk that took in excess of five hours, as he and his family meandered from booth to booth, which probably included food typical of such an event (which is to say: not health food), I had had enough!

Nada. Nothing. Zip.

So I did nothing! It even took me a couple days to mention it to mutual friends (who from the inception of this deception have been bitching about Matt’s methods) to even mention that I noticed his logged meander. But, between not feeling 100% and Winter Weather that finally hit Central Florida, I wasn’t motivated enough to get out there and pound ground. Oh, and my walking/jogging partner was on injured reserve for a couple weeks due to injuries of her own.

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I did a couple of bike rides during my hiatus and my eating varied from healthy to I’d-rather-not-mention-it-in-this-public-forum. The latter outweighed the former.

Though I know that my personal weight-loss goal will weigh heavily on food choice, volume, frequency and timing, I cannot allow myself such a long absence from running again. Cycling, as much as I love it, is not helping me out on any front (weight, Challenge points, etc.) and I need to put on my running kicks. And run. However slow, because it “all” counts.

Here Goes Nothing.

That pretty much sums up how tomorrow and the rest of the month could go…I can go all out, head-first, damn-the-torpedoes again. Or, I can literally go forth and do nothing.

Hopefully, because my eye is on the prize at the end of the year-long challenge, I’ll actually exert some willpower to get going in the correct direction. I might have lost The first portion of the challenge (of which three of four months remain), but I can win portions two and three and the overall, while winning the ultimate goal: returning to a healthy and clean-eating lifestyle that I once adopted and lost lots of weight, gained muscle and had an improved outlook on life.

Weak One of 52

That’s not a typo, it’a play on words.

As of yesterday’s post, I was feeling rather confident about my chances to close Matt’s point gap while suffered through the agony of defeat, on account of his feet. But as I sit here writing this, I’m not so confident.

And, if I am to retain any of yesterday’s confidence it’s only going to be with respect for Matt’s tenacity not pity for his resolve to prove he can run, walk, crawl his way to 400 miles in four months. That’s just 100 miles monthly, 25 miles weekly and 3.6 miles daily.

So, even though we’re only one week into a 52-week challenge, I might be the weaker of the two when it comes to resolve to prove somebody wrong, win a challenge and get healthier in the process.

So, what changed in less than 24 hours?


Matt shows off his feet, 9 days and 66.5 miles into The Clydesdale Challenge 2016. This is after the Y Fire YMCA 5K at Fireman’s Field.

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The CC Concept

The Clydesdale Challenge, “CC,” is divided into three categories or sub-challenges involving two endurance disciplines: running and cycling.

Matt and I were the first to commit to this challenge and we later added Dusty and Laura. Laura doesn’t really belong in the contest as she’s definitely not a Clydesdale and probably isn’t even an Athena.

“His weight-loss feats are legendary among our circle of friends. He can lose or gain 10-12 pounds overnight, just to meet a weigh in goal.”

For the short time that Matt and I have known each other, less than two years, he’s known me as a cyclists. He’s never known me to be a runner, and he shouldn’t. I have run regularly in 4-5 years and not “avidly” since I moved to Florida from Oklahoma more than 10 years ago. But, I ride regularly and, despite my weight, fairly strongly.

Griffin and Shutt

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Not all Clydesdales are Fat

But I am.

At 5-feet & 9-inches tall and 256 pounds the morning of Jan. 1, 2016, I am fat and overweight. I am a fat Clydesdale but not all Clydesdales are fat.

The term “Clydesdale” as I’m using it is a cycling or triathlon race category, reserved for those weighing from 200 to 220 lbs, or more. The female equivalent Athena divisions range from 150 to 180+ lbs, give or take, depending on which sanctioning body is doing the sanctioning. Continue reading