TCO 254 | Peloton Workout

254: Crystal Reviews The Peloton Guide Plus Our Interview With John Amussen

TCO 254 | Peloton Workout


  • Crystal reviews her first week with the Guide (with some help from John Mills.)
  • Aditi Shah is featured in The Juggernaut.
  • Ali On The Run sits down with Kirsten Ferguson.
  • spotlights Emma Lovewell.
  • talks to Tunde.
  • Dr. Jenn: Wrapping your head around an injury.
  • Peloton has an all-new way to get a bike.
  • Connect The Watts writes about The Guide’s times exclusive content.
  • The Guide features Peloton’s first voice assistant.
  • Peloton launches a YouTube series.
  • Angelo has tips for resisting temptation.
  • People are getting their 15K Minutes surprise gift.
  • All this plus our interview with John Amussen!

Watch the episode here


Listen to the podcast here



Crystal Reviews The Peloton Guide Plus Our Interview With John Amussen

By the time you read this, we will have gotten back from New York. We’re flying up to New York for a quick thing. Should we say why we’re going there?

I think so. You guys might remember that Howie Godnick passed away suddenly. There’s a group of folks that are celebrating his birthday and we were invited. We’re going to zoom up there and memorialize Howie and celebrate his birthday, then we’ll be heading right back.

Can we say that will be fun?

It will be wonderful to see people that we have not seen in so long. It will be wonderful to hear fun stories. I can anticipate some of these stories that we’re going to be hearing about Howie, and that’s going to make my day. It’s going to be a very heart filling opportunity.

There will be pizza.

You can see where Tom stands on this.

What pray tell do you have in store for people?

We’re going to do an in-depth conversation about the Guide and my experience for a week.

You’ve had it for a week so you can give people real honest-to-God insight.

We’ve got a visit from Dr. Jenn and it’s all about an injury and how to mentally get past that. We also have a visit from Angelo at MetPro and it’s all about resisting temptation. We’re also going to talk about some other things going on with the instructors and some In Case You Missed It stuff. People are getting their gifts for the 15,000 minutes. Things like that.

Before we get to all that, shameless plugs, don’t forget we’re available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify. Wherever you find a podcast, you can find us. While you’re there, follow us so you never miss an episode. I was looking at our data. Apple has new data and I found out that 94% of our listeners every week are already subscribed. Give us a review while you’re there. That’s always helpful.

You can also find us on Facebook, While you’re there, like the page and join the group. Check out our YouTube channel where you can see Crystal give me her sour face at Finally, we throw a lot of articles and stuff at you over the course of an episode, and it’s hard to write down URLs while you’re driving. You can sign up for the newsletter at and they will all be sent to you weekly. There, I’m done. Let’s dig in. Shall we?

We shall.

Joining us once again is John Mills from Run, Lift and Live.

How’s it going?

The Guide came out. Crystal has now had a full week of Guide usage under her belt. We thought we would drill down on thoughts and things of that nature.

You guys have read lots of stuff about the Guide so jump in if I miss details that you’ve read about. Here’s my first impression. Very nice packaging, by the way. It’s beautiful. It looks great. I liked the way that the base is magnetized to the bottom. It feels very solid. Wherever you put it, you feel like it’s going to stay together. It is a very strong magnet. I figured out how to put the batteries in the remote. That was the little button at the end of the remote if anybody doesn’t know that. We get it all set up.

Hopefully, they had figured it out by now.

You were so neat with how you opened that.

I don’t like to rip the boxes because it hurts my hands. It’s me helping myself.

She was taping this for social media. That box, if you’re not careful, will make a fart noise. She was trying not to because she was like, “If I do that, people are going to think I’ve farted.” I know that’s what was going through her head. Don’t let the box make a fart noise.

That was it. I was surprised by how large this camera was. I expected something a little smaller. That was interesting. When you hook it up to a computer, I did not realize it has to be a 10 ADP or a 4K. It cannot just be any old TV. I tried it on our TV downstairs in the workout room and I kept getting all these issues. It wasn’t letting me calibrate the movement sensors or the camera. The movement tracker I think is what they call it. It wouldn’t let me do any of that. I thought that was interesting.

I hooked it up to the television in the living room, which is much newer and it was fine. It was great. I could never get the remote to pair with the TV, but I think it’s because ours is complex. We don’t have anything that’s a super simple setup with our sound. I’m not worried about that. I didn’t care about the remote from a sound perspective. Once I started using it, I thought the content itself is great. It’s your typical Peloton content, all good stuff but the movement tracker, I had two problems with it. One, when the dog enters the room, the movement tracker goes to hell. It cannot track you and the dog. If you have an animal in your house, you’re going to have to keep them out of the room because it does not work.

Do you know what they need for the dog coming into the room? They need a pause button.

The other thing was let’s say you’re doing a thruster move where you do a squat and then go into an overhead press, it will count the movement if you raise your arms above your head. You don’t have to do the exact movement. It’s not that hard to trick it. I also noticed that if you are doing an EMOM, for whatever reason, it tracks it. I was doing a four-minute one. Maybe it was a six-minute one, it doesn’t matter. At two minutes, it said that I had completed it on my movement tracker and it stopped counting it for me. My movement tracker was complete at two minutes. I was done. I didn’t care for that.

I’ve also heard there have been some issues with people going into a live class. They can not see anything about the opening credits. The pre-show that the instructors do, they can’t see it at all. It kicks you out of a live class about 15 to 30 seconds early on the Guide only. I don’t know what that’s about either. Obviously, there are some bugs to be worked out. As you both know, the movement tracker does not actually correct your form. It is just seeing what you’re doing. You’re able to compare your own visual next to what the instructor is doing. I did like that there were several different views that you could do.

My favorite was when my view was stacked on top of the instructors, because of the way that the screen was set up, you could still see the leaderboard. You could still see the stack feature, which is showing you all the different moves coming up. I liked all of that but I didn’t like how it was so easy to trick and that it’s not counting your reps. It’s just counting movement. Those are my initial thoughts. Does anybody have any other things to add, questions, etc.?

I wonder a little bit about that. Generally, from what I’ve read, these computer vision-based devices identify joints, at least in other products. They build a stick figure of a person so then they can determine what movement you’re doing based on what’s going on with those joints. When you say you were able to raise your hands over your head, and then it thought you were doing the movement, that makes me wonder if it doesn’t know that movement yet or they haven’t evolved this to a point where it’s identifying all these joints in that way. It loses me a little bit. I’m not sure what that is.

That’s a fair point. My understanding from my Peloton Prophet sources is that there is a library of moves that can be tracked within the movement tracker and not everything can. There will eventually be reps that can be counted. For some movements, you’re going to be able to count the reps. However, this is my understanding, it is not on the roadmap at all to have form correction. I do think that it will be a feature in the future.

John, to your point, on moves that are in the movement library, you’re going to be able to see it should get better at learning what you’re doing overtime. The AI should get better. However, I don’t think it’s going to get good enough that it’s going to be able to tell you how to correct your form. It’s going to get better at counting your reps.

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I was reading this article. I can’t remember the guy’s name, but he’s Peloton’s VP of AI and computer vision. He was talking about the Guide and how they’ve used AI with Peloton in the past. They used it for class recommendations. This is their first product where it’s built into your routine or exercise. He talked in a way like, “We’ve got this thing out there. It’s the first thing on the market and it’s going to evolve.” I’m summarizing the whole thing. He talked about a lot of stuff. It felt to me like, “We got something out and now this is going to grow. It’s going to get better. We’re in this space now where we are going to try to continue to build it out.”

I definitely agree and I have heard that too. I will say from what I’m being told, even on the roadmap down the line, that correction is not in that roadmap, but the rep counting and other features are. To your point, there will be other Peloton products that are released that need this Guide to work. This is something that will be growing over time.

That makes sense. Where I was going with that is it feels like this is the “we’ve entered the space” deal. I don’t know if it was meant to be, and now we’re worlds above everybody else as it relates to AI and every component underneath it. I don’t know that it was meant to be that. It’s like, “We entered the space, here it is and now it’s going to grow.” When I look at it through that lens, I’m a little more optimistic. It’s a little more compelling to me when I think about it like that.

I feel like I never expected it to be. I know we touched on this a little bit. On this show, we look at it like we know all these other things going on with Mirror and Tempo and Tonal. We’re talking about the Guide and how it doesn’t have a lot to offer compared to those products. However, if you’re in the Peloton arena and you don’t have any strength that you’re doing other than Peloton strength, this is a great product. This is a great way to get started to be able to check your form.

This is for people who don’t necessarily know. They’re not in touch with how their body moves or doesn’t move like how deep you are going on your squats. Using this camera, you’re going to be able to see, are you actually getting parallel to the floor or are you like this? You’ll be able to see that improve over time. Those are definite benefits. That’s something that unless you already have an actual mirror in your workout room, you’re probably not paying that much attention to it. You’re just doing the moves.

You don’t have to pay an additional monthly subscription fee, which is the biggest selling point. The Peloton has reached a tipping point where so many people are in possession of a Peloton product. If they can come up with something that’s close enough to scratch the itch of something like a Mirror or a Tempo, people are going to go, “I don’t have to have another monthly fee. Okay, good enough.”

There are also a lot of people that don’t like other content from other vendors. I love Tonal instructors and Peloton instructors, but they are very different. There are people that do not enjoy a Tonal instructor as much as they enjoy a Peloton instructor. If you don’t like to get your strength workouts in that way, you have this whole other option that can be good for you.

What you were talking about earlier, that was my own epiphany. I’ve been deep into studying this space ever since 2019. There has been a lot of evolution since 2019. This whole AI thing started right around 2019 in the area of fitness. I had a different level of expectation that I don’t know if the average user would have had. I wasn’t thinking in those terms until after I listened to the reviews, and listened to Peloton and how they’re describing it and how they’re presenting it to the world. I came to that place where you’re at now as well. It probably works well for those that don’t have that preconceived notion and or those that are already in the space that doesn’t want that dual subscription. They have a lot of reasons yet probably in play.

Also, the exclusive content. That’s a big deal for Peloton owners. We are some FOMO people, We’ve got to have the newest stuff and the fastest. We’re some type-A people. When you started saying, “I’ve got these new programs and nobody else can get them for seven weeks,” I’ll buy. I might not even use them but I need to have them.

It’s like the corner DVD guy. Somebody’s going to have exclusive content recordings like the flea market.

I saw it in your group. There are all these links that you can get to the classes beforehand. It has already started. You can get to them even though they’re exclusive, but I feel like it’s different when you have it and it’s built-in. It’s like I didn’t need to do the junky workaround. I could just press a button and I got mine.

You didn’t need to be watching the movie and see the head of somebody in front of the person on the screen. I’m trying to watch the movie.

I don’t want the DVD copy. I want the Blu-Ray original.

It’s all shaky. You don’t need all that. We bought those before.

We all have.

The theater DVD release window used to be like 6 or 8 months. It’s six weeks now. A million years ago, it was almost a full year before something had VHS.

If you didn’t go to the theater, you were bootlegging the DVDs.

I had bowling Thursday nights but Erica is big in the movies. I’m not. She would come bowling with me so that she could hit up the DVDs. She would walk through the bowling alley with the DVDs. I got that Batman Forever. That’s the only reason she went bowling with me.

It’s a win-win if you ask me. I think that exclusive content is a big deal to people. I like that they have programs now that show you the split. They show you, “Here’s often to work your upper body. Here’s how often to work your lower body.” They were lacking that before. I am so glad to see some directions there.

What do they call them in Tonal? I can’t remember the name of the guy.

Little guy front and back.

I like the little guy front and back. I’m not hitting on little guy front and back, but my little guy front and back only shows leg workouts. I do all my strength training in the garage. My little front and back guy looks all messed up. We might have to do some strength classes so my little guy front and back looks right.

What if you played a Peloton upper-body class while you did your upper-body workout? What do you think about that?

I might have to do that because I’m not liking this two-tone little guy front and back. That is not working. I don’t like that visual. It’s all messed up.

Data miners over at Peloton are like, “Our data shows us that John Mills doesn’t have arms.” That’s why he’s sleeves are off. It’s all coming full circle. Overall, do you think yes now?

For people who don’t have another strength product, this is great. For people who enjoy Peloton strength already, this is great. It gives them another layer. If you already have a Tonal, I don’t think you need it. It might be fun to switch it up. Don’t get me wrong. I love switching it up but I cannot imagine it taking the place of Tonal because of the added instruction and the way that it adds on weights for me.

I never have to guess. Whereas with Peloton, I’m still like, “Do I try an 8-pound or a 10-pound?” They’re like, “Try a 10-pound.” I’m like, “I can do the rows but I can do the overhead presses.” I’m switching it out and now I miss 20 seconds, and now the EMOM is over and I hate all that. Whereas with Tonal, it’s like, “We increased your weight.” I don’t have to think about it.

I have no idea how much I lift in any movement. I never pay attention. I just do what it says. Every once in a while, I have to go, “You were wrong. We’re going to take that down. I appreciate the confidence. No, thank you. I’m flattered.” I don’t give it a second thought. I do whatever it tells me to do. It’s like being married.

What’s funny is we’ve had Tonal for almost a year. No one in here uses a Tonal because it sits there. I get up a couple of days ago and Erica was doing a whole routine on the Tonal. I don’t know what inspired that, but I don’t think it was the guy. All of a sudden, she’s doing the whole routine on the Tonal. I’m happy about that. I want to see where that goes. The point you were talking about Tonal giving you all that feedback and direction, you know how Mirror and Tempo are also trying to replicate that.

Mirror has the smart weights and I think Tempo has smart weights as well. I know Tempo is based on how the cadence in which you’re lifting or doing a particular exercise. Now, Tempo will go, “You did that pretty quickly based on the weights that you’re using, you should be going up.” They are giving recommendations based on weight and cadence. They’re trying to mimic that Tonal capability. I suspect that at some point, Mirror is going to try to mimic it as well. I got to assume they got smart weights now.

They’ve got a camera and smart weights. I’m assuming they’re going to try to mimic that. When I see those two things happening, it takes me back to what we were talking about earlier. A Peloton now has a camera in your house when you’re doing weight training. That could probably evolve to the same things these products have to evolve to. I’m a little more optimistic about the future. I’m waiting to see where this goes based on how I saw Mirror and Tempo evolve. I’m not saying that it’s going to be any better than Tonal. I’m not trying to compare them. I’m just saying they evolve to do things that are much more.

TCO 254 | Peloton Workout


I’m going to tease Peloton and say that hopefully, we don’t have to wait five years for that evolution. We’ve been waiting for the Rower. If they are going to do that, and they are evolving and they are headed down that path, they need to get to it because these other products are way ahead of them.

I listened to John Foley talks about they are a technology company for years. Every time he would say that, their release cycle is pretty fast. If you’re going to innovate, it’s about to happen. I’m with you. Something is going to happen quickly. That sounds like what Uncle Barry was talking about. He said, “This is the slowest we’re going to go,” or as fast or something like that.

It’s something like that but I don’t know. He’s a crotchety old guy. I’m not sure about him. He’s crabby. He can come on the show and talk to me if he has issues with what I got to say. Come on, Barry.

They will probably sell a few of these at Christmas time because if your significant other loves her Peloton and they haven’t pulled the trigger, this is a nice and easy thing to be like, “I’ll throw that in the stack of gifts they get.”

Put it in the stocking.

I bet it’s going to be a big hit on Mother’s Day. I bet there are a lot of them over Mother’s Day.

If you’re trying to figure out what to get for your significant other and they love Peloton, it seems an obvious choice for $300. It’s like, “I know you’re on the fence about whether or not you want it. Here it is.”

It’s already included in your membership fee. If you’ve got something else, so might as well.

That’s right. That’s a win-win. You paid the $295 and you don’t have to pay a membership for your significant other. You’re done with the $295.

Our official review is, might as well. Why not?

Thank you, John, for joining us to drill down on the Guide. Also, if you have a Guide at home, don’t actually drill down on it. It will void your warranty. Until next time, where can people find you?

They can find me on my Facebook page or group, Run, Lift and Live. They can find me on Instagram @RunLiftAndLive. They can find me on TikTok, Run, Lift and Live, or they can find me at

Bye, John.

Joining us again is Dr. Jenn Mann, licensed marriage, family and child therapist, and Sports Psychology consultant. You may know her from VH1’s Couples Therapy with Dr. Jenn or VH1’s Family Therapy with Dr. Jenn, and her long-running radio show, The Dr. Jenn Show. She has written four bestselling books, including The Relationship Fix: Dr. Jenn’s 6-Step Guide to Improving Communication, Connection and Intimacy. It’s Dr. Jenn.


We’re so glad to have you. I feel like we’re going to hit all of your expertise because the question I have for you is actually threefold. There are three different individuals that have written in, but they have very similar questions. Stephanie Ward is one of them. She just had surgery so she can’t run or lift for six weeks.

We have Tina Hatch who is just starting to get back into working out. She sprained her ankle a couple of weeks ago. She was in a boot for six weeks. Now, she’s dealing with being scared to get back on the bike. She’s also struggling with her motivation. We have Paul Erickson. He has an injury. He’s not even sure yet what it is. It might be a bruised bone. It might be plantar fasciitis. All of them are dealing with motivation and working out and working through this injury. What can we do?

A few things, first of all, Paul needs to get himself to his doctor. He needs to make sure that he knows exactly what’s wrong so that he can treat it. Otherwise, he just keeps injuring himself. Paul, we need to put you in a separate category because you got to get to the bottom of this and recover. Even before you start working out again, you need to know for sure that your doctor is okay with you working out if that’s the right choice for you.

With these other two ladies, it sounds like they’ve got the green light. They are able to go back to working out, but now they are in that weird zone that we all get in when we’ve been away from our bike or tread for a long period of time. I think a lot of the time, especially when you have been doing Peloton for a long time, there’s a level that you hit.

When you have to step and come back, there’s a lot of anxiety about, “Am I going to be at that level? How far have I fallen? How quickly will I be able to get back? Will I be able to recover?” I don’t know the ages of these women but as we get older, we tend to get a little more anxiety about, “Will I recover? Will I get to that level again? How long?” The first thing is to give yourself a little grace and to understand that it takes a while. No matter who you are, no matter what age you are, it takes a while. You’re going to have to be patient with your process.

You need to come back under the assumption that you are going to be at a way lower level. You need to congratulate yourself for getting on the bike, for taking a class, for picking up the weight, and for starting again. You’ve got to start gently. One of the biggest mistakes that people make is that they start at the level that they were at. They’re like, “I was working out an hour a day, five days a week. Now, I’ll work out 45 minutes, five days a week.” You’ve got to start light.

I recommend talking to a trainer, a sports physiologist, your doctor or someone who knows about this so that you can ease back gently. We also want you to have the experience of success. We want to set you up to succeed because we tend to be more motivated when we succeed. If you say, “I’m going to go do a Power Zone class. I’m going to do an hour-long class,” you’re going to be upset. You’re going to be discouraged. You’re not going to be motivated.

If you say, “I’m going to start with a 15 or 20-minute low impact ride. I’m going to see how I feel,” and it goes well, you’re going to be motivated. You’d be like, “I’m doing better than I thought.” I would much rather that people had that experience. Start light and build. Start to give yourself the bare bones, what will feel good and gives you a small sense of accomplishment, not compared to before, but compared to laying on your couch while recovering from an injury, and then re-layer. As each week goes by, you want to start to layer.

I started doing bike. I didn’t hurt my foot. I was able to do that. Next week, I’m going to start adding some upper body weights or I’m on the bike, or I’m going to start to do some core class, or I’m going to add in yoga. Don’t go from that to like, “Now, I’m going to run hard on the tread.” Do walking, then do maybe some walk-run classes. Work your way up but don’t overdo it. That is one of the biggest mistakes that people make when they are coming back from an injury.

Being that there are so many type-A personalities in this group, it’s hard to tell yourself it’s okay to start gently. It’s okay to start low. Do you have any tips on how they can mentally get in a good headspace to go easy on themselves?

I believe that Peloton and our workouts are a microcosm of how we function in the world. The life lessons that we need to learn in the bigger worlds are often the life lessons we need to learn in our workouts. Most people who are coming from that perspective need to learn how to be more gentle with themselves, how to be more accepting and how to be patient. They to learn those emotional skills. It’s important to look at this as an opportunity to say, “I’m going to use this as an opportunity to be more patient and to be more kind to myself. I am going to try to break old habits and to use this as this wonderful chance to do things differently and break patterns that are probably gone back decades.

Good reminder, Dr. Jenn.

All I could think is clearly I’m not type-A.

I know someone quite close to you that is.

I know. I’m like type C-minus. I spent the whole segment thinking what’s the least amount of injury I could get and still not have to workout.

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I think that burnout is also a thing. People also have to be careful when they find themselves getting injured. They’re not trained so hard that they’re burning themselves out. For me, and Crystal can speak to this, I had to learn to take a week off here and there. That has been challenging for me. As your wife knows, we were going to do a ride. She’s like, “Are we doing our run this week?” I was like, “I’ve done five days off. I was on the fence about whether I was doing seven or do this run.”

She’s like, “It sounds like you need another day off.” I was like, “Crystal says so I’m going to do that.” I was glad I did. Now, I’m having killer runs. I did a 30-minute with Olivia and I killed it. I was running at an 8, which is major for me. I feel like I’m so refreshed. We also have to look at, when it comes to injuries or when it comes to not feeling motivated, are we doing too much? Have we given ourselves enough downtime?

That’s a good point. I’m so glad it worked.

The student has become the teacher. How about that?

It’s so much easier to hear other people’s issues than my own.

We each have our roles, student, teacher, and the class clown. That works out well. Thank you very much for joining us. Until next time, where can people find you?

You can always find me on social media @DrJennMann. I post all of my Peloton workouts on my Insta Stories. You can also find me every week in InStyle magazine, Hump Day With Dr. Jenn. I have a weekly column that’s all about sex and relationships.

Aditi Shah was featured on

They were featuring her because she’s Aditi Shah, first of all. They placed it as she’s the only South Asian instructor at Peloton. They gave her a little bit of her own place. They talked about yoga, how she got involved in yoga, and how she moved to the US. There were a lot of great background details here. I see that you did not register, Tom.

I did not register for whatever The Juggernaut is.

Anybody out there who wants to read this article and you’re like, “It’s paid.” You can get to it for free for seven days. If you want to take the time to do that, it’s not as difficult as it sounds. Just remember to cancel seven days later. It’s a great article. I enjoyed it. I loved hearing about Aditi’s background. Also, you might have noticed on social media that her mom had been here. It looked to me like her mom was here to do this article because they were featured in pictures together. It was some of the same kinds of pictures I saw Aditi posting on her social media and her mom left and went back. I feel like she might have been here specifically for that, which is cool.

Kirsten Ferguson was featured on the Ali On The Run podcast.

In episode 505, you can hear Kirsten’s interview with Ali and find out all about her background. Did you know that Kirsten is married to a super famous football player?

I did not. I don’t know any football players unless it’s Tom Brady, Joe Montana or Mac Davis from North Dallas Forty.

We’re not super into sports. Anyway, listen to the show.

Michelle K of sat down with Emma Lovewell.

They discussed strategies that Emma Lovewell uses to navigate anxiety, which I find interesting because if you think of people who are super successful, you’re like, “You never feel anxious. You have everything. Why would you be anxious?”

What if it all went away? That’s why you’re anxious.

It’s working for her, whatever she’s doing. Thanks, Michelle, for sharing those strategies. talked to Tunde about not worrying about other people’s opinions. She’d rather put her focus on love.

There were some great quotes in here. My favorite was when she talked about other people. The person interviewing her was like, “You’re a wonderful instructor. You’re my favorite but you’re not everybody’s favorite. How do you deal with that?” She was like, “Nobody is everybody’s favorite. There are people that don’t like Beyonce.” I say that, Tunde.

You probably said it during our interview with her, and then she was like, “I’m firing that away.”

It’s more like the other way around. Don’t forget, her book is coming out soon. You’ll be able to read great little stories like this very soon.

There is a new way to get yourself a Peloton bike.

We talked about this a while back that there were 6 cities, 13 cities. I can’t remember but it started small. There were ZIP codes where you could go and you could lease a Peloton bike. The interesting thing is that it has grown to several more cities and it also has grown to include the Bike+. They were only trying this for 30 days. They’ve extended it through June. It is going to be going a lot further and a lot longer than originally expected. I haven’t read all this super clearly but my understanding is that if you already have a Peloton bike, you can’t do this. I don’t know if that’s true. That’s what somebody told me.

I guess they don’t want you to get one for the summer or something. I wonder if people will do that in certain ZIP codes like, “I’ll have one shipped to my lake house.”

They’ll have it in Natick. There are all kinds of summer homes in that area by the shore. It’s not like I know what I’m talking about. People are like, “That’s not even right.” You know what I mean though.

ConnectTheWatts talks about the Guide and their secret strategy, timed exclusives.

We talked about this when we were talking to John. I know we already covered this, but I think that people are underestimating the power of this. I believe that the author of this article is dead on. We cannot stand as Peloton users the FOMO. We hate missing out. We hate it. If everybody is up there at the studio, we got to be at the studio. If somebody has taken a special class, we would be taking this special class.

TCO 254 | Peloton Workout


The fact that they have these exclusive programs, it’s pushing people to buy them. I can’t tell you how many times I have written my thoughts on the Guide and mentioned the exclusive content, then in the comments, I have, “FOMO bought it.” That is the response. It is absolutely working. The interesting thing is it’s only exclusive for seven weeks so you can get to it. You just have to be patient, but guess what? We’re not patient. We’re type-A’s.

If you think about it, if you’re like, “You only got to wait seven weeks,” why does anybody go to a movie theater? You only got to wait for seven weeks and it will be on home video.

I think the price point helps in conjunction with this because it’s low enough that it’s like, “I might as well get and take classes with my friends.”

I agree. I think going from $495 to $295 is a game-changer for getting people off the fence.

Especially when you already have weights. If you already have weights and you already have a heart rate monitor, which I forgot to mention earlier, it does not work with the Apple Watch at least for now. It does work with my WHOOP and several other types of heart rate monitors. It doesn’t bother me but you can still get your strength score. For people that want to use your Apple Watch, I think it’s coming.

While we’re talking about the Guide, we should also address the fact that it has a voice assistant baked into it.

I don’t feel like this is getting a whole lot of coverage, which is why I included this. I don’t know how often I will use it. We have enough products in our home that they all get confused. We got Google and now we got Peloton. If you tell Peloton to do something, it does it. I will say, It’s super convenient on the pausing. I’ve already used it.

When the dog does run into the room, PAWS comes into play. You can say, “Peloton, pause.” You can also say, “Peloton, rewind 20 seconds.” It will do that. I think something is being overlooked. People are not talking about it that much, but in households where you have a lot of interruptions and things going in and out, this is a very big deal. People probably are under-utilizing it thus far. It will be interesting to see if the popularity of that feature grows over time.

It could roll out to other devices. You didn’t think about that, did you?

I was so focused on this. It makes total sense.

Peloton has yet another new programming.

I told you guys that when they came out with Tunde’s podcast, there were going to be more programming and I was right here. We now have a new YouTube product coming out. This is important because people seem to be misunderstanding this. They think, and they could be right, I have no idea, that it is classes that you can take on the tread. Thus far, Peloton is saying it is only available on YouTube. It will be interesting to see if they move it over to the tread. Right now it’s called On The Leaderboard with Peloton. It features an instructor interviewing a famous guest with questions that accelerate over the workout. They have started with Joe Jonas and Usain Bolt. It’s also interesting the people’s reactions to this.

What sort of reaction?

Not good. There’s a split down the middle. There are people that showed up during the pandemic. They don’t care. They expect this thing from Peloton. People that have been around a while knew they are not happy. They are like, “Why is Peloton so focused on celebrities? Why aren’t they interviewing us little people?” It’s another way that Peloton has separated itself from the regular person. People have compared them to us like, “Why are you guys not interviewing us? We’re not good enough.” That is how it’s coming across to people. Of course, you always have people that complain about these things. I’m not saying that’s how everyone feels but I am seeing it a lot.

They do have “interviews” with regular people. The only one I listened to with a regular person in an interview was like someone else interviewed them and they clipped it together. It wasn’t actually talking to Tunde, but they have spotlighted regular folks.

They have but it’s not with the instructors. I’m not saying this is the way Peloton intends it, but the way that it is being perceived is that the regular folk aren’t good enough to interact with the instructors for this type of thing. That’s the way it’s coming across. It will be interesting. However, having said that it’s insanely popular already and people are downloading it like crazy. I don’t think Peloton is that worried about it.

The metric is numbers and it also helps cement the idea that the instructors are celebrities. You love Van Halen but you don’t get to just hang out with them. It doesn’t work like that.

I think it’s harder on the people that have been around for a long time. Just like when we went to homecoming and the instructors were suspended in the air on the balcony above us.

The year before that, it was a cocktail party and you stood there and talked to them.

It was a big difference and it did not go unnoticed.

Peloton has made some changes to its warranty program.

This is super interesting.

John Mills had pointed this out.

I feel like this is interesting because, in the past, Peloton always had a stance that if you used anything third party with your equipment, it did not count.

It would automatically void the warranty.

Regardless of if it hurt, if it didn’t hurt, it does not matter. Now, they’re saying the warranty still applies to the Peloton brand and components as long as the failure is not caused by the third-party accessory or caused by the installation of the third-party accessory. This is probably going to lead to some more fights, but it’s a good thing to change. All those things like the extender where you can put the thing on there and pivot your monitor, that’s great because that’s something people can use now.

It’s also good because there are things like the Wise Owl tray that we talked about that you have. I’ve always wondered if that’s a third-party accessory, could they technically say, “We’re not honoring your warranty if you had a third party accessory on your bike,” when there’s no way that tray could damage your bike or cause any harm. It could be utilized as a loophole. I feel like it also removes that as a potential concern. Here are my marketing machinations at play. I wonder if this is them getting ready to open up third parties to sell officially licensed Peloton accessories.

I totally agree, Tom. I think it is. The other interesting thing is the second part of the change is that the Peloton protection plan is now transferable to a new owner if they sell or gift the product. This is huge. This is never been the case before. The original one-year warranty always was that was part of it.

It’s like a manufacturer warranty that follows the bike.

Yes, but this is the extended warranty and the extended warranty is now transferable. Anything that was sold from April 5th, 2022 or after is transferable. That is fascinating.

If you’ve had it for a while, yours is not. Just to be clear, anyone moving forward is transferable. That is also fascinating because it also makes it easier to sell your bike on the secondary market. You would think that they would want to discourage that.

Joining us once again here to answer your nutrition questions, it’s Angelo from MetPro.

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It’s good to see you, guys.

I am so glad you’re here. I put out the bat signal and I asked The Clip Out community, “What are you guys struggling with nutrition?” It must be a bad month because we haven’t gotten this many responses in a while. It was like everybody is simultaneously struggling. We had three people that are struggling with how much they love food. We’ve got Todd. He said, “Pizza is delicious, and so are French fries.” Brian Miller says, “He wouldn’t call it a struggle but he loves food. Chicken wings, gravy, loads of ranch dressing, big gigantic steak.” You guys are both going to love this. He hates all fruits. There’s nothing more gross in the world. Susan says her off switch or lack thereof at night. I feel like all of those are related. Whatever you say can help all of them.

One of those is a match made in heaven for Tom, fruits and vegetables.

It would be a bad combo. It would be like Sid and Nancy.

I don’t know. I hope that wherever you guys go, you’re going to have to order it with a stool softener. Here’s the deal. Todd, Brian and Susan, you are all normal. Food is one of the few things that human beings derive the most pleasure from. We get so much pleasure out of good food and drink. I’m going to tell you a solution. You’re going to say, “That makes sense,” but it is harder to implement than to say it. With this solution, you don’t have to give up foods that you enjoy. You don’t have to give up indulgences. What you have to do is you have to have a very strong routine in place. That way, those indulgences are truly that. They’re special occasions.

I have clients all the time. Whenever they start with me, people are gung ho like, “Angelo, I’ve seen the transformations. My friend did this and I can’t wait. I’m not going to eat out or cheat for a month.” I explained to them, “Everything you said was wrong.” They said, “It’s our anniversary. I have this special occasion. It’s coming up. What do I do? I’m so stressed out.” They always are shocked at my answer. My answer is, “I want you to go and I want you to eat whatever you want and enjoy yourself.” Here’s the deal between now and that event three weeks from now, you’re going to have 87 meals. I want you to get 82 of them on track. The one meal that you’re going out and having a special occasion, it’s not going to amount to anything significant.

The solution is not to give up forever the hot wings or pizza or things that taste good. The key is if it’s Tuesday at 1:00 in the afternoon, I don’t want you eating pizza. I don’t want you eating hot wings. I don’t want you to eat chocolate cake. Tuesday at 2:00 in the afternoon, you have your routine. You’ve already had a clean breakfast. You had it prepared. You have an afternoon snack that’s already packed and ready to go.

What’s going to happen is that’s going to set you up for a cadence of two things. One, you’re eating clean, healthy, good foods the majority of the time. It’s not going to leave as much room in your belly for the junk foods, for the foods that aren’t helping you reach your goals. The other thing it’s going to do is it’s going to decrease cravings. I say decrease, not eliminate, because chocolate still tastes good. When you have macronutrients, proteins, carbs and fats in relative proportion and at regular intervals throughout the day, it has the effect of stabilizing your blood sugar.

Chocolate still tastes good but you’re not going to get as much of that where you’re walking down the road and all of a sudden, you’re hit with this lightning craving. It will reduce the frequency. At night, make sure that your core dinner has been overall healthy. You’ve had enough of the healthy food. If you do feel like you’re going to go back and you need to eat something else, grab seconds of that healthy dinner.

If you’d still want a snack, a treat or something, at that point, you’re going to be able to indulge without letting it take over. I’ll give one more piece of advice on snacking that I don’t think I’ve shared in previous episodes, but it was a conversation I had with a client. We were talking about off-meal versus core snacking habits. Which is worse? What do you think, Tom?

I think the poor snacking habit is worse.

That is the same conclusion we came to and here’s why. If you sit down in one instance and you have a meal in one shot and it’s not the greatest meal, but it’s off track, you’re only going to do so much damage. I think we were talking about events like Super Bowl parties. I said, “What are you going to have for your meal?” He says, “I’m not going to eat a meal. I’m just going to snack on foods throughout the day.”

It is amazing how quickly you can put away a bag of chips and salsa or the pretzels or those snack go-to foods because over the course of a few hours you will eat a couple of bags. It happens. The best of us will, without thinking. If you ever look at the back of the family-size bag of potato chips and take a look at the calories on one bag, it’s designed to be so addictive. Everything from the smell to the crunch to the salt.

If you can replace that with whole foods and corral it into meal times where there’s something you want to indulge and indulge in it, but also have the good foods, that’s going to help. If you want something more specific or you say, “I have this event and six weeks and I want to be at X weight. I want to reduce body fat or I want to build muscle,” whatever your performance goals are, we can build you a bite-for-bite meal plan. You can make that sacrifice, dig deep and engage.

This is what I do and Crystal, you do this. We can make this happen for you. If you’re just looking for habits, start with an overarching routine. Instead of figuring out how you can stop eating X, Y, and Z, figure out how you can start eating breakfast, lunch, dinner, or breakfast, lunch and snacks that are relatively clean. That will get you off the ground and going.

It’s like that old Irish adage, moderation in all things, including moderation. Thank you so much for joining us. If people would like you or people like you to help them with their nutrition and fitness journeys, what is the best way to find you?

Thank you.

A while back, people got notified that if they had done 15,000 minutes, they were going to get a special gift and those gifts are now starting to roll out.

It is a top and a bottom. I’ve seen leggings and tanks. I’ve seen tanks and shorts. It seems to be like women got leggings and tanks, and men got shorts and tanks. It’s exactly what we thought. It’s old inventory because there is not the same thing over and over again. It’s a hodgepodge of inventory. I also think it’s interesting that it arrived in April. I thought it would be closer to homecoming and they will use that but they did not.

That’s a great usage of old inventory, especially since they used to blow that out at the sale. I’m sure it wasn’t netting them much money at the end of the day. You can’t have it so that’s a great usage. I know that some people might be like, “It’s leftover stuff,” but it’s free and you weren’t expecting it in the first place.

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

I’m going good. How are you doing?

We are good. We are glad to have you here. Thank you for being so flexible with your schedule. I know we had a little scheduling snafu.

It’s just a global pandemic.

I know you were sharing a little bit about your friend on the table before we started, but I feel like people at home need to know about this too.

In the past life, I worked for a couple of movie studios, but one of them was 20th Century Fox. When I was there, they made There’s Something About Mary that is Puffy the Dog. It’s not the actual dog who’s been embalmed or anything like that. This is not a PETA-endorsed or something like that. My wife was not sure about having it at home. We did not have a lot of space for it, so I took it to my office. It’s a small dog, but when you have a three-bedroom house and eight-year-old twins, we don’t have many spaces.

Moving on, how did you originally find Peloton?

I have known about Peloton, but this goes back to my days in the movies. I am not the world’s best prognosticator. For example, I used to work at Paramount and they were working on Forrest Gump and I thought, “I had read the synopsis. No one’s going to see this movie.” You can tell I should not make stock bets either.

TCO 254 | Peloton Workout


In your defense, have you ever seen the footage of Tom Hanks doing a read for an audition with Haley Joel Osment that ends up playing his son at the end? He’s doing the read and has not figured out the voice yet. He’s reading it like Tom Hanks and it is the creepiest thing you have ever seen in your life. It’s that movie lives and dies on that performance. When he does not do the voice, everything that comes out of his mouth sounds creepy. It’s fascinating.

I went to business school and worked on the business side of films. I used to go and talk to business students. People would talk about how movies are so bad. I said, “You don’t understand, my parents worked in publishing and when they got a manuscript, they were experienced the way, people buy the book and experience it reading. You got a script and there are eight million things that can go wrong between the times someone reads the script and it goes on screen.” The miracle is that there are good movies at all.

I talk about that in my movie podcast all the time. I’m like, “It’s a bad movie, but in fairness, we need to remember that there are so many variables.” Sometimes there are movies that are not good, but you still love them. Caddyshack is not that good of a movie, but there’s something about it that makes you love it. Sometimes are these intangible features that you don’t even understand why it works at all, but it does.

My wife is a writer, editor, and producer, and it’s also hard to write a good script.

I can’t even imagine. I think about this so much more now that we do the show than I ever did in my life before that. When you put yourself out there and it’s hard to do, so doing that is a writer, editor or producer and then having the entire world judge, that’s awful. It’s too much.

There was a producer named Linda Oaks who wrote a book about how to be a kind producer. She was not, in fact, that kind to people, but she had a good point when for writers, which is, “Don’t take notes for people who don’t like your script.” In criticism, it applies. If people to your show suck and taking notes from them does not make any sense, but people like your podcasts and say, “But maybe, and.”

I don’t take people seriously who are mean in general because you can’t please everybody, but you are right. I tend to listen most carefully to people who are polite about bringing it up. There’s no expectation for me that we do everything perfectly, but I do think that people could be nice. I like the fact that she wrote about how to be a nice producer.

It’s easier to sell than telling and yelling at people. Anyway, I had known about Peloton. I thought, “I don’t know, I don’t see why.” At the time, my wife and I belong to a gym. In retrospect, I was an idiot because it was hard for me to go to the gym during the week because I work at a school. I have to get there early. It’s hard to do any fitness thing before school and be there on time, but I was doing it.

The pandemic then hit and I am in no way going to the gym. My wife turned to me at one point and it was the Monday after everything shut down. She said, “We should get a Peloton.” That was like March twenty-something. She did not have to push me that hard. I was like, “It makes sense. We are not going back to the gym for a while.” People are saying, “We are going to be home from school for 4 to 6 weeks.” At that point, this is where my prognostication is good. I said, “You are deluded. We are not going back for a long time. Let’s do it.”

It showed up in June 2020. I had spin shoes that fit because I also ride outside, but she did not. The shoes that came were too small. I got on the bike first, which was a bummer for her. My first ride was with Leanne. I did the Brits first because they had the live classes at 6:00 AM Pacific Time and then it was Kendall, Olivia, then I found a Power Zone class. The next class I took was to FTP test.

I’m a little crazy like that. I got into the Power Zone stuff pretty seriously and that’s where I do most of my stuff, but I like to get out and about in the Peloton universe and I discovered more of the strength. The hard part about that was as hard as it was to get a Peloton early in the pandemic, it was harder to get weights. I found a set of weights. I got the last one and they came in pieces and half the weights got lost in transit, which means the UPS driver decided he was going to take them home or something, I don’t know.

It took about 5 or 6 months to get a full set of weights and then I started doing the strength stuff, and my wife is doing this too, but our entire lives changed for the better because I’m an early morning person. I would get up a little before 6:00 and I would do my ride, stretch, and take a shower. She gets up. During the pandemic, we were giving the kids breakfast and I would take off.

She would handle the first hour of school and we were very fortunate we had someone to help us when they were learning from home. My wife is now a producer on The Bachelor. I can’t tell you anything. I don’t know anything because she does not tell me anything and I’m not interested. If I knew anything, they would basically own my heirs and me for the rest of eternity.

She has a lot of responsibilities and editors calling her. Her life went from, the before times we call it, she would take them to school. She would go to the gym. She would have to wait twenty minutes for the class to start. She takes the class. She takes a shower and goes home. I live in Los Angeles and going home, this is a quarter-mile drive maybe, but at that hour, it could take 25 minutes.

We are in a cut-through. She would get home at 10:00 and be right into it. Now, I take the kids to school on my way to work, having worked out already. She can have a little bit of coffee in her, which is important for world peace. She gets on the bike and does her thing. She does ride one day and strength the next. She can deal with editors while she’s on the bike texting and then gets off.

At 9:00, she’s ready to go and one of the things about the pandemic, a lot of people are working from home. A lot of editors have been scattered. There are people in different time zones working at different times, and she can connect with them at different times, so they don’t have to wait for her and it’s become much more efficient.

We are not spending money going back and forth to and from the gym or trying to find a class that meets the schedule. I belong to Equinox. I liked Equinox a lot. I’m friends with the woman who is still there and it’s a good gym and they have great instruction, but it does not make any sense anymore. She was doing a lot of indoor spinning there. She did that. She’s a swimmer at heart and she did the Alcatraz swim, not because she was like walked out there or anything.

All they have is Alcatraz swim and she did it. She did a lot of cardio training on the bike. Every Sunday, she would go and do ocean swims down Manhattan Beach, later finding out she was near a great white shark nursery. She told her friends not to tell her about sharks until after the Alcatraz swim and they made the mistake of telling her the night before.

That was no mistake. They all got together. They were like, “Here’s what we are going to do.”

That’s mean.

She did not sleep well the night before the swim, but it all worked out. She felt the indoor cycling helped her with her endurance. She’s also completely into Power Zone and using that to build her base so that when she can go back to swimming when she does want to do it at some point, she has not lost that cardiovascular ability. She did go back to swimming a little bit this summer and then backed off as everything went to hell again.

Peloton is great for that. There are so many triathletes that we have met through Peloton that they train so much on Peloton. I have met so many great people, Chris Galland, Krissy Blackwood, and Tracy Pullman, they all were huge factors in me being part of the Atlantic City Half Ironman. I did a relay there. I did not do the full thing, to be clear, but I did do the running portion of it and on a team. It was so fun and I would not have done any of that if I had not met so many great people who do that.

I stood at the finish line and waited.

He did, and he was in the rain.

That was hard and I’m proud of you. It’s really helpful. I used to bike outside a lot, way back when I did the California AIDSRide twice, which is from San Francisco to LA. It’s for seven days. There’s a bit of climate involvement. It’s all the doable pace and everything is pretty much taken care of for you, but you have to have done a fair amount of training. I remember doing that and when I was first training, I was doing swimming. I came back and I was telling the woman who’s taking a class.

I can tell the difference because I have so much more power and reserve. It’s not that it was a lot faster. It’s that if I needed to push it, all of a sudden, I could. The same thing, I went mountain biking with a friend. I’m not a mountain biker by any stretch, but I had the same thing around a steep hill and I could gun it up and get where I had to go. That was random indoor cycling.

I had a similar experience, not biking for seven days, but we did a walk, a five-mile hike on New Year’s Eve because it was 70 degrees here. The last time we did something like that you tricked me into, it was like, “I could barely do it.” This time it was like, “No big deal because I have been doing the Tonal.” Even though I have not necessarily been training for endurance per se, I have been exercising and it was totally different.

My wife and I and the kids went into the Tonal store in the Century City Mall. I was like, “This looks cool and I have no place to put it.” We can afford to buy a Tonal. It’s the other house that we have to buy. I’m not putting a Tonal at work. I’m sorry, but I like that a lot.

That is one of the good things about the Midwest is that you get a lot more bang for your buck in your houses.

We have so much space, in the Midwest in general.

If you saw our house compared to what we paid for it and to what it would cost where you are at.

Peloton instructors can't see you, so you can do whatever you want. It's your ride. Share on X

We could not afford our house.

I don’t think I could have afforded my house what it was now when I bought it several years ago. I have been in one place for several years. I hate moving.

I don’t blame you.

The Peloton experience completely changed how we deal with life. It made life a lot easier and got me back into cycling. I did indoor cycling. I got trained as an instructor at this gym called Bodies in Motion, which is an LA-based gym that made its bones as a boxing gym, ironically enough. They had these guys who were pretty serious boxers and kickboxers doing their training. When they moved from this tiny little storefront near my work to a bigger place with bikes, I got on the bike and I liked cycling. The guy who started the program was a cyclist. The class has made sense for someone who biked outside.

What happened over time, I felt what it’s worth that, and I don’t mean to disparage the aerobics instructors, some of my best friends are aerobics instructors. You got a lot of aerobics instructors on bikes who were spinning their feet fast with no resistance. There was no physiological benefit to it and it was hard on your joints. It didn’t feel like something that was worthwhile.

At the time, I did not have kids and so I could go outside, so I rode outside. When the Peloton came, I thought, “I will try it and then I got sucked into it,”, especially with Power Zone. I’m a Power Zone guy, but people can do whatever they want. The thing about Power Zone is there is a plan and a concept that you can follow. If I want to, I can take another class and I can make it a Power Zone class or I can do the classes queue. People are saying stuff, but they can’t see you and you can do whatever you want.

It’s so true. That’s why most of the instructors will say, “It’s your ride. You do you.” You can absolutely do that, the same thing with people who train via Heart Rate Zone training. You can make any class into a Heart Rate Zone class. You don’t have to have somebody queuing you on that, but there are certain people who are less comfortable making those choices themselves.

They want somebody to queue them because they are not confident. You have been an instructor, you have had spinning classes taught to you, then you learned how to do spinning, and you have done all this outdoor riding, but for people who are brand new to all of this, I’m sure that feels overwhelming to do.

That’s part of it. There are a couple of things. One is, I rode in college, my wife swam in college, and we both have the same feeling about this stuff. It’s people tend to not understand that they can go harder. Their mind tells them to stop before they have to. That does not mean it is not uncomfortable and difficult and all that, but people left to their own devices won’t work as hard as they can and get as much as they could out of it and that’s the argument for listening to the instructors and take the queues. With that said, when someone says go to 40-resistance at 100 RPMs, for me, that’s because of how my bike is, that’s close to a warmup.

It’s a little more than that, but for some other people, that’s like, “I’m going to die.” There’s a disconnect there and people have to understand, “It’s okay if it’s different for you.” The thing I like about Power Zone is you have an objective measure of what you can do that tells you where your exertion is. Don’t have to do it, but it’s a handy tool to have. I can know like if I’m doing a ride and I feel like, “This should be easy,” if it’s not that tells me something. It’s like, “I need more sleep. I need to take a day off the bike.” All of those things are feedback to me because I have this metric that I can live by. That’s valuable to me again, your mileage may vary.

Do you create your own Power Zone challenges?

I do Power Zone challenges. I’m on a team, Bunz Lightyear. It’s the space theme challenge this time. I love it and connect with all these people. I have heard other people talk about how they become connected and friends with people in these groups and I completely see it. My daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies, and some of my teammates have bought Girl Scout cookies from her, so that is all good. It’s a nice and supportive community that tells people, “You did great. If you can’t do it, that’s okay too.” The first and foremost thing is to take care of yourself.

There are two things I would like to come out of this pandemic. One is if you are sick, stay home. Number two is to take care of yourself. Do the thing you need to do to take care of yourself. Take a day off, take a bath, whatever it is that you need, you should do that. Part of it for me, because it’s always been important to me is working out. I have discovered that rest is important too. I get into a pattern where I do something every day and I’m on the bike, even if it’s an easy ride every day. Sometimes I need to not clip in, that’s important.

I have a slogan for your team. “To Inspinity and Beyond.” It’s genius and you know it. As soon as we are done, you are going to be on your group text.

I can do it right now. I am big on credit.

In that line of work and with what your wife does, it’s for the best.

You don’t want to get intellectual property lawsuits.

No. You said that Peloton had pulled you back to outdoor riding. Are you doing that now?

Peloton made my outdoor writing better, having not done it for years. The thing that stopped me from running outdoors was having twins. They do different things on weekends. They are a boy and a girl. As much as we would like them to do exactly the same thing and make our lives easy, they have not chosen to do that for us. We are starting to pull in different directions. When I want to do a ride, this is all because I want to do a Century Ride Solvang in March, 2023. I’m training for that.

The reality is because of the base I have with Peloton, I need about 4 or 5 rides outside. I need to build up. I did a 24-mile ride and I will do a 40 or 45-mile ride with a lot of climbing in it. I’m trying to do it but again, the schedule and stuff. If I can do that and another couple of rides, and then at the end, like a 70-mile ride, I’m ready.

Are you part of the Road Riders Group as well?

I have joined the Road Riders Group. Thank you for having him on because I was trying to find that and there was it was. I’m part of that group, although I have not taken advantage of it. The thing I would like to know is, are there people that are doing rides around Los Angeles?

The answer is yes.

I got to hook up with them, but I have very specific timing and places. It’s hard for me to do things with other people, not because I’m a misanthrope but mostly because I have a tight schedule to get stuff done.

It’s probably faster than driving.

It can be. I live up in the hills and I was working at Fox. Occasionally, I would bike to work. That involves climbing up a god-awful steep hill very fast, about 6/10ths of a mile and it was about a 10%, 12% grade, which burned out my lungs, then it was downhill all the way to the Fox lot. I through the day and then around 6:00, I say, “It’s almost time to go home. I have to climb back up.”

That’s exactly where my mind started. I was like, “You got to do that at the end.”

Coming back through Santa Monica mountains cut-through where they separate the Westside from the Santa Clara Valley, and it’s about a five-mile incline on the Westside to the top and only two miles from the valley, so that was not fun. Plus, I live on a hill, so no matter what I do, the last 3/10ths of a mile is a hideous climb. That was not so much fun. I did not do it that often, but I did do it. It was not slower than taking the car. Let’s put it that way.

Hopefully, there are showers where you work.

I would only do it if there was a shower. There was a shower at work. That is one of the nice things about being on a film lot is you have stuff like that available.

That makes sense. That’s another thing I have always wanted here in the Midwest. We don’t have anything like that.

They discourage showering.

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We have showers, but we don’t have showers at work. There are very few companies that have them.

We have those old tiny flower waters on a string and we just pull it, like in Ma and Pa Kettle movies, dating myself.

I’m older than he is.

He’s the one referencing it.

When my wife was doing the Alcatraz training every Sunday, she would get up early and go. No matter what, I had the kids for that morning. We are very focused on when we do stuff like that because it’s a lot to put on the other person.

Before we started, you were talking about your affinity for donating blood.

I started when I was in Rhode Island. I went to Brown, so I lived in Providence for a long time. I got out and I lived about three blocks from a grocery store that had a mall. It was like a grocery store and three other shops. It’s a precursor of the modern mall. There was a Radio Shack and the Rhode Island Blood Center was in there, so I started donating blood. It’s because it was easy and at the time, I was working nights, so I could go there every day. Every eight weeks, I would go there and donate blood. It’s a good thing to do. By the time I left there, I had donated about 2 or 3 gallons. I lost track. Each donation is about a pint, so eight donations to a gallon.

I moved out to LA and I was in business school and I could not do it, and then I got out. It turns out I was living not too far from American Red Cross and started giving there. I gave another three or so gallons while I was living in that space. It then became more convenient at UCLA, where I went to business school, opened the blood center and I started going there. I have given about two and a half gallons there. I try and go as often as I can.

The difficult thing is they are open during the day and so if you are working during the day, getting out, and doing it is tough because the kids don’t want to sit at home all the time, but I try and get out. The nice thing about the pandemic is I was working from home a lot and I could go down there and donate a lunch. Now, there is a huge blood shortage because of the pandemic. I would say that it takes a little bit of time. You get juice and cookies, what’s not to like.

The needle in your arm. I don’t mind with all the Moderna booster stuff we have done, I have given so much blood this year. I have gotten past it, but it is an amazing thing.

Was there something that pulled you to that or it was right there and you were like, “Why not?” It then became a thing?

It was the why not out of it all. It’s like, I knew it was a good thing to do. At first, it was super convenient and then it became like this is something I can do that has virtually no cost to me. I’m not losing money. I might read a book or watch a TV show there. It’s not that big a deal. If enough people do it, it makes a huge cumulative difference in the health outcomes in an area.

There’s always a shortage of blood. It’s more exacerbated now, because of the pandemic and people who are afraid to go in and donate, or unable to go and donate. All of the people who have gone given up a kidney or something like that, that’s insane to me. I have incredible regard for them. This feels like cheating. It’s no big deal.

You are like, “I will get the blood back.”

It will come back eventually.

If not, when you cut yourself shaving, air would come out by now.

That’s true and I would look a little more palate.

You are selling yourself short. It’s amazing that you have done that because you did not do it once or twice. You have done it over the years and you have done it consistently. How many gallons did you say altogether?

It’s around 8 to 10.

If you ever need blood, do they put you at the front of the line? Do you get like a special card?

No, I don’t. If I need blood, I have to have other people’s.

We should all give blood because then we can at least ensure that you will have blood when you need blood.

He’s playing the odds. He’s given so much blood, if he ever needs blood, he will get his own back.

It depends on the timing. If I got into an accident on the way back from giving blood, that’s more likely. I’m endeavoring not to do that.

We want you not to get in an accident at any time.

Also, it’s a cost-saving measure, if you are looking to get liquored up, you don’t need as much.

For the record, I’m pretty much a lightweight, even before I donated blood. If I’m drinking, I’m at home, and then all I have to do is make it down the hall as opposed to getting in the car.

It’s a lot safer that way, so that’s good.

When my wife and I go out, when we have someone to watch the kids, she is the designated drinker.

It used to be like that at our house. I was the designated drinker. I don’t drink that much anymore, and we don’t go out because of the pandemic.

We have not been out like that in a long time.

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The nice thing about LA is there are a lot of places where you can get outdoors. We managed to do that and have outdoor dining. We are in the throes of winter now, it’s a little chill, but it was 48 degrees.

It was nine here.

I went to high school in Minnesota, I know what cold is. I also know that if it’s 60 degrees and windy and you are sitting outside, it’s cold.

That is true.

No one in Minnesota would be stupid enough to sit outside when it’s 40 degrees.

That’s shorts weather.

What’s your leaderboard name?

My leaderboard name is it’s highly imaginative. It’s Twins’ Dad Encino because I live in Encino and I’m the twins’ dad. I put a lot of thought into that.

Did it take you a couple of hours to come up with it?

I had another leaderboard name that I did not like and I went to Twins’ Dad Encino. I have a name I would like to go to, but Peloton does not have enough characters. There are fifteen characters for the leaderboard name, I need eighteen because otherwise, it becomes a jumble of no vowels. My idea was to be The Dread Parent Roberts. If they go to eighteen characters and someone else gets it, I will be mad. Every once in a while, I think of going on the OPP and suggesting, I was like, “No.”

You are asking to get yelled at. I don’t even know what they would be mad about, but they would be mad, so I don’t do it. Don’t do it, John. If you want to request it though, you can go to the Support Page at Peloton, and if they have like a little section that is for people to suggest things. You can suggest it there. You don’t have to do it on the OPP and get yelled at.

That’s a good idea because friends don’t let friends go to OPP.

That should be a slogan.

Do you have a preferred instructor?

I do a lot of Matt Wilpers stuff because he’s so dominant in Power Zone. It depends on my mood. For the Power Zone, I’m generally Matt or Denis. Sometimes, I want to go with Christine, and sometimes in challenges, you have choices and also look at the music. There was one time I was looking at this and I thought, “Maybe I will take Ben’s class and I don’t want to hear Eye of Tiger again,” because my son is very into it and we hear it a lot in the house. Sometimes that’s the determining factor, but if I want to chill ride, I might go with Emma. Different instructors have different strengths. Emma and Denis are the people who are most plugged into music organically.

I don’t know all the instructors well, but those two, I get that sense and it’s fun because they get into the music they are playing. If you want to get your rear kicked, Olivia and Kendall are good for that. I looked at my history and I started with the Brits and then I took a class with Jenn, then took a class with Kendall and Olivia. It was Christine for Power Zone and then I got into all the Power Zone world. I have never been sucked out since.

Whatever works for you.

That should be the mantra of Peloton, whatever works for you.

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

I probably did it wrong. People say, “Take the intro classes,” and I did not do that. Part of it, it’s like, “I have done spinning before I know how to do this. I know about form, pedal strokes, and all that stuff.” There’s a little bit of arrogance in that, but it’s true. I did not want to do that and make it feel like it was too easy. If you are getting started, do the beginning stuff. Take different instructors. Don’t burn yourself out. That’s a key thing. Get into some of the other stuff, like the strengths program is good and find the instructors you like.

If you're just getting started in Peloton, take the intro classes, and don't burn yourself out. Share on X

I like Callie for her strength. People like Selena because I found a cool stretch she does with the upper, some great stretch. I took a strength class with her and I thought, “She seemed like a nice person.” Not so much. I have gotten into yoga stuff, it’s more related to counteract all the stuff that the biking does, but the yoga instructors are good.

If you join a group, they are a resource. There are 100 people are in my Power Zone pack team. They have taken everyone and done everything. Ask questions. People are very happy to give you advice or information in those forums. Not the OPP, whether it’s the Breakthrough Crew or Hardcore, which scares me, I have not gotten into that because those people scare me a little bit. They are all eager to help and get people to get the most out of what they have done in their homes.

John, thank you so much for joining us. Before we let you go, remind everybody where they can find you if you would like to be found.

I’m Twins’ Dad Encino on the leaderboard. On Twitter, I don’t talk about Peloton or fitness stuff there and I might alienate people with what I do talk about, but it’s @JRA81. You are following me, Tom, and you can find me.

Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to join us. We appreciate it.

Thank you for having me. I’m glad everyone’s feeling better.

Thank you.

I guess that brings this episode to a close. What pray tell do you have in store for people next episode?

Another fun interview. If you guys watch the show, Fixer Upper, you might recognize the name Clint Harp. He is a huge Peloton fan and we were lucky enough to sit down with him and talk about all things Peloton, and some fun stories from how he met the Gaines.

Until next time, where can people find you?

People can find me on Facebook at They can find me on Instagram and Twitter, and on the Peloton leaderboard @ClipOutCrystal.

You can find me on Twitter @RogerQBert or Facebook at You can find the show online at While you’re there, like the page and join the group. Don’t forget our YouTube channel, That’s it for this one. Thanks for tuning in. Until next time, keep pedaling and running.


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About  John Amussen

TCO 254 | Peloton Workout“The past ain’t what it used to be, and what’s more, it never was.” – Ronnie Gilbert (I think) Never Trump; Hillitant.