The Paceline Podcast 142

The Paceline Podcast 142

This week Selene veers into gymnastics. Don’t worry, she’s got a good reason. Perhaps you’ve seen the video of UCLA gymnast Katelyn Ohashi’s perfect-10 performance. Selene muses on body image, what it means to be supported and guided, and ways in which we evaluate our bodies that don’t do us any good.

Paceline listener Romany is going to race the Breck Epic this year. And she’s thinking of replacing her twitchy and too often over-the-bar mountain bike. It turns out that light isn’t the only quality that’s relevant for a mountain bike. She asked Patrick for some advice and the answer he delivers, Selene confirms.



The Paceline is supported by Eliel Cycling. Crafted in California, the Eliel brand combines the latest technology with cycling tradition to deliver an experience that is authentically California. View their retail gear and custom program at


Show links:

Katelyn Ohashi’s amazing perfect 10 gymnastics routine

Phosphate and metabolism

Castelli Perfetto Long Sleeve

Shimano Wind-Resistant Jersey

7Mesh Synergy Jersey

Giordana Acqua+Vento Jacket

Sportful Cabrio Fiandre Jacket

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  1. Romany

    Thank you both for the deep dive on what bike is the best choice! Fascinating. Selene, I know exactly that descent you’re talking about off the continental divide, I did it last summer on my hard tail. You’re exactly right – it was sketchy af on that bike and would have been a whole lot of fun on a full suspension. I now have a _whole_lot_ to think about. And maybe some budgeting to do . . . Thank you both ❤️

  2. Jim

    Since you guys were talking about body image and tracking weight over years and Patrick brought up body composition, a topic suggestion I would make is can you discuss the ways body composition is measured, and the accuracy of the different methods? I hear of a lot of people tracking their composition with the smart scales, but I’ve also read that their accuracy can be pretty suspect.

    Also, since you discussed weighing yourself, but only once a week etc to not get too worried about daily fluctuations, the approach I have taken to this is to use a bluetooth scale (almost) everyday, but always at the same time (shortly after getting after bed), but not looking at the numbers, just waiting for my phone to buzz that it got the data. I then only look at a 5 day average. This way I mentally am not as worried about the one reading per week being a data outlier high or low.

  3. Emily

    Patrick, thanks so much for being open about your recent depression. You cannot know how much that meant to me. I suddenly had tears trickling down my cheeks because I could physically feel in myself how difficult it must have been for you to share. I am a successful in my career and have two great kids, but struggle silently with depression because of the stigma associated with it. As more people are willing to be open (as you were) perhaps that stigma will eventually fade away. So thank you for your bravery on that one and know you helped at least one person with your honesty.

    1. Author

      Hi Emily: You’re very welcome. I often worry that when I speak of depression that I’m alienating all the listeners out there who *aren’t* depressed. In the quest to connect with an audience, this is one way to prevent that, I fear. However, I also feel like I’ve got a responsibility to be part of the change I wish to see in the world, which is to say if ever there is to be less stigma, someone needs to step up and be honest, so I guess that guy is me. This isn’t easy, and as I mixed the episode, when I got to that portion of our conversation, I had to take my headphones off for a few seconds; I couldn’t listen as it’s just too painful a mirror to encounter. I’m sorry for your tears; that’s an intense experience and not really one I like to see in distribution. To the degree it helped you, I’m glad. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Mike Terrell

    Selene and Padraig, I enjoyed your discussion about body image and our tendency to ignore power in that power to weight ratio. I am a relatively big guy, at least in the world of cycling. I hover between 193-199 lbs. I shouldn’t be the guy to the top of the climb first, but among my riding buddies, I usually am. In any athletic endeavor, leg strength has always been my best feature. I love taking on hills for the challenge they present. I am often grunting up them on my fixed gear.
    In the last several years, I have lost about 25 lbs. This wasn’t “I want to climb better” weight loss but “I want to be physically healthier” weight loss. It feels like climbing is a little easier than before but my overall average speed is pretty much the same.
    Would I like to be few pounds lighter? Sure. Do I think it will make a big difference on the bike? Probably not, especially if the journey to 185 is full of misery and deprivation. I ride for so many different reasons but I ride for joy above all else.

    1. Author

      If you’re often the best climber in your group of friends, you’re doing at least one thing right. Your perspective suggests you’re getting a lot of things right.

  5. Scott

    I liked the bike recommendation segment. I’d be interested in hearing more about custom frames-what kind of rider can benefit, how to make the most of a trip to NAHBS, etc. I’m about the same height and weight as Chris Froome but without his power output. I’ve had a couple frames made and put a lot of miles on them but I didn’t get the feeling that the fit/ride/handling were as magical as advertised.

    1. Author

      I think you covered all the salient points prior to the podcast recommendation, but I will check it out.

    1. Author

      Honestly, I’m not yet to the point of thinking as much about how much as I am about how. As in method. Do I make it strictly hourly? Or do a just do a flat fee with a limited number of hours? Or do I do a hybrid where you get the first X number of hours for Y and then you can get additional hours for Y+1, Y+2, etc. I’d welcome opinions and/or feedback. What I can say is that on the occasions when I’ve done this both officially (for the reader who purchased a Seven) and then unofficially (with friends and a few other readers), there can be a fair amount of handholding that can require research on my part. I don’t mind, but it can consume some time.

  6. Jeff vdD

    Patrick, the good news is that you can relatively easily test some different models. Thinking about it from the buyer side, I might spend $99 on such a service for a bike in the $2k-$4k range, perhaps $199 for $4k+. But, maybe I’d pay more. So, if you don’t think that you could get close to those numbers (validated by what other buyers say), this might be a non-starter.

    What I like about this idea from your perspective is that you’re already updating what you know by virtue of your current work. So, it’s not like you have to go out and do from-scratch research with each engagement. More research? Sure. But not full research. And, that “more research” probably benefits your publishing work.

    If you were able to create a database (even just a spreadsheet) of bikes that includes weight, price, geometry, and other features, you might be able to quickly filter down to a few options. That database wouldn’t have to have all bikes, just a few per category from manufacturers you truly respect. Not sure if creating this database saves more time than it adds.

    I’d lean toward a flat fee to start. Sometimes you’ll spend more time, sometimes less. But it removes the “Uh oh, I’m about to get nickeled and dimed” worry on the part of the buyer.

    1. Author

      Thanks for your perspective. I’ll share that I’m exploring this and have begun soliciting feedback from some industry friends, and the numbers you suggest are exactly where I seem to be heading.

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