Three Big Dudes and the Bike


As we all know, the bike is a beautiful and amazing thing…but the importance it holds and the personal meaning it possesses differs for each and every one of us. For three web friends of mine, the bike is the answer to achieving their weight loss goals, obtaining better health, and improving their overall fitness.

My buddies, Clive Chapman, Bryan Dewberry, and Joel Phillips are three big dudes.  I wanted to make sure they were okay with me calling them that before mentioning it here in this post, and they were cool with it.  But, with the motivation and focus that these guys have….pretty soon, I’m just going to have to start calling them dudes.  Each of these guys have their own blogs and they talk about the day to day journey of using the bike to help meet their weight objectives, and here’s a quick overview showing who they are and what their story is all about.

Be sure to check out the contest at the bottom of the post. We’re giving away a Sweet Leaf Tea XL jersey to any of your “Bigger Dudes” out there who are using (or want to use) cycling as a way to reach your goals. We’re hoping this jersey will either motivate you to get down in weight so you can fit into this jersey, or to lose weight so you’re no longer wearing an XL.  Just leave a comment below explaining your story and you’re in to WIN.

Congratulations to Eric McWhirter, the winner of our “Big Dudes” contest.  Eric receives an XL Sweet Leaf Tea Jersey and we’ll be watching him and cheering along as he shoots towards all his fitness and cycling goals.

Clive Chapman – MassiveMTBer (Don’t Ever Stop)

I’ve known Clive for over a year now and have really enjoyed getting to know this mate who hails from Birmingham, England.  I’ve found him to be very inspiring as I’ve gotten to know his story and have appreciated his support and friendship along the way.  Clive is part of the #LovingtheBike Army and here is an overview of life on the bike, according to Clive.

Most people are obese because they eat too much and/or don’t exercise. That is certainly true of me anyway and I suppose at 312Ibs back in June 2009 it’d be hard to argue. After many failed attempts at “weight loss” I decided I needed a sustainable way of doing things, having grown up with bikes since I was a kid and as a pre fat adult I thought it would be the way forward for me. I’d done the gym thing and the going out jogging stuff but they all crashed and burned big style. You know what it’s like, once you’re in from a hard day’s work, going out to get your exercise again is pretty much a nonstarter well for me anyway.

So, I thought, I have to work, so why not use my commute as that exercise? And the rest as they say, is history. In June 2009 after dusting down my MTB and building up slowly from a 6 mile park and ride along the canal to the full 12 miles, which is now often an enlarged 20 mile pedal in on my “new” road bike. As an indicator of how fast improvements come I completed 2 solo centuries last year after only a year back pedalling and eating properly. After 2 years my weight is now 204Ibs with a 104Ibs loss.

There are as many ways to get healthy as there are people, no one way is a guaranteed success, I should know, I tried pretty much all of them. But I do know one thing for certain, to succeed at weight loss, you need to do something you love and as I’ve always loved the bike, this is my way of succeeding. That and a pretty big dose of will power and self-discipline!

Check out more from Clive at

Bryan Dewberry – Biking to Live

I’ve known Bryan pretty much since the first day Loving the Bike was launched….in fact, Bryan was the first person who came across this site and left a comment behind.  Since then we’ve bounced blogging ideas back and forth, had a bunch of laughs, and rooted one another on.  Bryan has spent some time working with Kelli on his nutrition, and I’ve offered a few pieces of goodness as well….and he’s used it all to make great strides towards his goals.  Here’s a little more from Bryan and how he uses cycling to lose weight.

In short, cycling has gotten me off the couch, off the Xbox, and on the road to better health. Without cycling I’d still weigh almost 300 pounds (its shocking when I think about that), still have chronic aches and pains, and shortness of breath at the slightest physical activity. I didn’t get serious about my cycling until this January even though I’ve been trying to lose weight using my bike for almost three years. Once I got serious, set some goals, and started holding myself accountable, I began to see changes in my body.

Initially those changes were being able to ride further and an increased average speed. That meant my fitness was improving. Eventually my clothes started to fit better and I found I could wear clothes I hadn’t worn in a long time. That meant I was starting to lose some weight. Then the scale stopped moving.

At this point I realized that cycling alone wasn’t going to do it for me. I needed to make more changes if I wanted to  keep losing the weight. That meant I had to commit to changing my diet. I was still eating too much of bad stuff and it was offsetting any gains made by riding. Once I made this commitment the weight started coming off again and I’m now down in the upper 260s.

In addition to modifying my diet I’ve also made changes in my cycling as well. I’m now doing interval training twice a week and participating in group rides each Saturday morning at one of the local bike shops. Going forward I’ll be implementing both core and strength training in order to make myself stronger on the bike.

As I look at the road ahead I now I’m going to get there.  I still have a long way to go to a target weight of 175 but I know my bike is going to get me there.

More from Bryan can be found at

Joel Phillips – Reasons 2 Ride

I’ve only known Joel for a few months now, but very quickly I’ve been able to witness all the wisdom and inspiration he has to offer.  This dude is super focused on what he wants to achieve and his goals include both personally using the bike to improve himself…and also those of the people around him.  He has the personal mission of creating awareness and providing education about the dangers of obesity, while inspiring change and motivation through cycling…and here is a little bit more about what cycling does for Joel.

For years I looked for the “easy way”, hoped something better would come along, wished my luck would change.  All that got me was fat, not that I was ever considered skinny, but uncomfortable in my own eyes.  The unsightly flab is a reflection of not being motivated, in a sense, saying, “I quit”!

Getting back on my bike though, that started some blood pumping.  It really turned my life around.  I am not talking just about the health benefits, those are well documented and, as Kevin Bacon said in “A Few Good Men”, “These are the facts of the case and they are undisputed”.  I am talking about the mental and spiritual health benefits that come with riding a bike.  This is why I ride a bike, this is my reason and I have grown so much in this regard.

Riding a bike allowed me to deal with my baggage and resolve personal struggles.  Something therapy and Prozac failed to accomplish.  Riding a bike so perfectly mirrors life, I just couldn’t help but to take the lessons learned on the road and apply them to my life.Life has its hills, mountains, valleys and plateaus, just like a bike ride.  Just like on a bike ride, you have to pedal to go anywhere; sometimes you will be standing up, turning red, wishing you would have never started; while other times you will be comfortable and steady in a cadence; but the times you can coast are few and go by fast.  Little by little I took this philosophy and applied it to my life.  I let go the anger and found self-confidence.  I gave way to doubt and discovered resilience.  Pride replaced shyness and it no longer mattered what I looked like, because that is not who I am.

You might say I found balance, which is kind of ironic, because you need balance to ride a bike.  I never believed I could accomplish much, but why would I, I was coasting.  I now know that I can’t stop, won’t stop doing what I need to be happy in life.  This means enduring the struggles of physical conditioning and the challenges of championing a worthy cause and accepting the criticism that comes along for the ride.  I know I can do it, I’ve proved it to myself one mile at a time.

Joel’s blog is

We’re giving away a Sweet Leaf Tea XL jersey to any of your “Bigger Dudes” out there who are using (or want to use) cycling as a way to reach your goals.  We’re hoping this jersey will either motivate you to get down in weight so you can fit into this jersey, or to lose weight so you’re no longer wearing an XL.  Just leave a comment below explaining your story and you’re in to WIN.  Contest closes on Sunday, August 14th at Noon EST.  Winner announced on Monday, August 15th.

Can you associate with these guys?  Let us hear all about it….and if there’s anything we can do to help push you along, just let us know.

Enjoy Your Ride

Tags: , ,

Pin It

23 Responses to “ Three Big Dudes and the Bike ”

  1. Rolet online on July 8, 2020 at 10:23 am

    Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

  2. suba suba on June 11, 2020 at 3:48 am

    Perfectly, i need Advantageously, the send

  3. fuji cycle rochester ny on December 17, 2013 at 7:21 am

    I totally agree! I
    nice post.

  4. herbal tea on September 3, 2011 at 5:10 am

    I used to enjoy herbal tea which i makes from actual leaves. I have lost 4lbs in 12 days by herbal tea and my physical activities. Diets and exercise both are essential for weight loss. I have seen couple of causes in which weight watchers are wants to lose weight in one day which is truly impossible.

  5. steves yok on August 23, 2011 at 6:11 am

    Eercise if your physique feels tired, a anniversary or two now and
    again doesn’t hurt. If you use these techniques I’ve explained to you
    throughout the year, and bounce and summer comes about you will already
    accept a arch alpha to fit into your swimsuit with curves if your a
    woman, or to appearance off your concrete conditioning for the
    gentlemen. Remember to exercise smart, eat right, and ability up for an
    advantageous life. 

  6. Eric McWhirter on August 15, 2011 at 3:14 am

    Well this is welcomed news! I am honored to have won, I do enjoy Sweet Leaf Tea when I can get it, I want to thank Darryl for all he has done with bike school and loving the bike, Loving the bite has been good reading as well, and the people that help out with they are class acts.

    I have my goals and a plan of attack, sure there have been set back but then there always is you regroup and move forward.


  7. Joel Phillips on August 15, 2011 at 3:12 am


    Thank you so much of including me on this post.  Clive and Bryan have some great stories, I am indeed honored.  It’s important to let people know how empowering riding a bike can be, whether you’re living to ride or riding to live.

    Good luck everyone in the contest and thank’s for some great feedback…


  8. Tim Henley on August 13, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    At 303lb the doctor told it was now or never to start loosing weight, blood test results showed I was well on the way to diabetes, so I decided to start dieting to loose weight. I realised that exercise was an important part of loosing weight, I had already been told after a knee injury (partly caused by being over weight) that I am not allowed to run so I decided cycling would be the way to go. Problem was a 303lb male on a bike is not a pretty sight (let alone a bike coping with that much weight) so I decided to wait until my weight had dropped a bit. At around 265lb I grew impatient and bought a hardtail mountain bike, at around the same time I found Clive Chapman’s MassiveMTBer blog. This was a guy who was beating his weight problem by riding a bike and I found it very comforting that I was not alone in my quest to loose weight by cycling (and dieting). 

    Being able to read Clive’s (and many others like it) blogs about cycling and weight loss has certainly helped me keep focus. I have currently seemed to have plateaued around the 238lb mark much to my frustration, but I am still working at it with the aid of my two bike garage.


    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 13, 2011 at 9:15 pm

      It so cool that you came across Clive and had him help get you moving towards your goals.  I love it.  I hope you break through your plateau soon and keep on moving in the direction that you desire.  I’m not saying this to generate business for our nutritionist, but Kelli would definitely be able to work with you to help break your through and get you there.  It’s a thought.

    • Clive Chapman on August 15, 2011 at 5:52 am

      Hey Tim,

      Thanks for the mention! Glad I could assist in some small way. I’ve plateaued too at 208Ibs. I’ve upped the excercise to include running and a more intense upper body workout. That’s a vainity by the way, as an ex rugby player the thought of a cyclists arms and body fills me with dread!

      But one of the things I know to be true (and it took me ages to discover) is that it’s not how much excercise you do, it’s controlling what goes in your gob is the key, which as all of us fatties know is the hardest part to control. Grip that and you’ll be rocking and rolling again.

      Thanks again for the mention!

      Cheers Clive

  9. Clive Chapman on August 13, 2011 at 7:02 am

    Thanks for posting this Darryl, I’m humbled to on your blog and to be compared with these top blokes!



    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 13, 2011 at 9:15 pm

      You’re an inspiration, Clive….just look at what Tim had to say about you.

  10. Eric McWhirter on August 12, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Hi my name is Eric and I’m a Clydesdale rider, I’m not able to run anymore and frankly I would rather ride a bike like most of us I rode bikes as a kid and rode everywhere. But I put that aside as I got older, about 6 years ago I needed to get my health in order, I was to over weight around 235lbs and with bad knees swimming and cycling is about the only thing the Dr. Would OK so I bought pawn shop bike which I rode around the house, until it was stolen then I got a Trek 4300HT from a pawn shop and started riding more miles on bike paths the weight was coming off I got down to 200lbs watching what I ate, then I had to go back to driving a truck over the road, I took the Trek with me and rode when I could, soon I wanted a new bike I bought a Kona Dawg frame and was going to to build it up part by part, then I got talked into a Cyclocross bike as that would be a good fit as i don’t get to ride single track that often when on the road, then I was asked what events I was riding in, at the time I wasn’t but that day I was reading the blog and there was a livestrong team sign up so I did, then I needed a road bike so I bought a Riley Boreas to go along with my Riley Crossbow, after getting it built I trained as much as i could, I made the Livestrong in Austin and finished a 65 mile route that was one of my best days on a bike, I find that even when the ride is hard and challenging its still a good day on a bike, when my heart rate is high and I’m havin second thoughts about the route I picked, I still have a grin because I’m having fun.
    This year I planned to ride three centurys and my training started off great then I had a health set back, I might not get those centurys this year but I will next year, and I will do it with a silly grin 🙂


    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 12, 2011 at 8:52 pm

      Hi Eric,

      It’s really good to have you commenting on today’s post.  I also appreciate you sharing your personal story and what’s happened over the past 6 years.  That Fat Cyclist sure has inspired a whole mess of people to take up road cycling and it’s so awesome to see that happening.

      I love your attitude and how you said “when the ride is hard and challenging it’s still a good day on a bike”.  Awesome.  I hope your health issues are resolved very soon so you can get back out there and hit those centuries.


  11. welshcyclist on August 12, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    I plateaued in weightloss a few years ago riding my bike. I should be slim and lithe commuting 40 miles a day, but food is my nemesis. I feel great, but oh, how I’d love to look great as well! Lack of self belief and low self esteem are somewhere in the mix, that keeps me heading to the fridge and the takeaway.

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 12, 2011 at 8:48 pm

      Good to hear from you.  Yes, food can definitely be a huge nemesis in the optimal weight battle.  We can bike and bike and bike our butts off, but if we’re eating poorly then it totally messes up our intentions of losing weight from cycling.  I’m not sure what sort of advice I can give you, but what I can say is if you keep moving forward in a positive direction to your goals, then a day will come very soon where you’ll gain the confidence and self esteem that you deserve.  Once you’ve hit that, you’re going to find it so much easier to refrain from the temptations of the fridge and takeaway.

      Please stay in touch with this and let me know if there is anything me or Kelli (our Loving the Bike Nutritionist) can do for you.


  12. Brian on August 12, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    I don’t just relate to these guys, I AM one of these guys. I am pretty regularly the biggest guy in any of the group rides I do. As of January 1st 2011, I was my heaviest ever at 268lbs. I worked my rear end off (literally and figuratively) and I’m currently down to 242! Although I’ve taken a break from running since my last sprint tri last month, I am competing in an intermediate distance aquabike on Sunday.  Just like these guys, I am hoping to inspire my family to be healthier. I especially want my 13 year old daughter to grow up with a healthy body image, as well as a healthy father. What I am loving about the bike is that is is a life long activity. Both my parents are 76 this year and they still ride their bikes! Stay strong and stay healthy!

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 12, 2011 at 8:04 pm

      Thanks for sharing your story, Brian.  I hope you can connect with these and other riders in your same situation and help support and challenge one another to reach all your goals.  We’ve got you entered into the Jersey contest.

  13. Aaronthestrong on August 12, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    And that is why LovingtheBike is one of the best cycling blogs on the net! It’s people like this these gents that keep me riding everyday! I have been cycling to lose weight as well with some great results. I am almost at the point where I need to go get some new clothes just to keep from looking goofy swimming in my clothes. Keep up the awesome work guys, and thanks for the inspiration!

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 12, 2011 at 8:06 pm

      I love to hear about your positive results….Good job, man.  It’s always great to hear from you and good luck in the Sweet Leaf Jersey contest.

  14. Anonymous on August 12, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Darryl, thanks for the opportunity to share my story with your readers. Clive and Joel are some amazing dudes and I feel honored to be in their company. A special thanks to you and Kelli as I continue battling the bulge on two wheels.

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on August 12, 2011 at 8:06 pm

      Thanks Bryan…….keep on moving forward every day.  You’re doing great.

  15. Anonymous on August 12, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Darryl, thanks for the opportunity to share my story with your readers. Clive and Joel are some amazing dudes and I feel honored to be in their company. A special thanks to you and Kelli as I continue battling the bulge on two wheels.


    March 2024
    M T W T F S S


Sugar Alternatives for Energy and Hydration

Question: I am using the homebrew sugar formulations (sometimes added to green tea).  I am also trying to wean myself off 1/2 dose adrenalean “lip tonic delivery system” (biorhythm brand- caffeine, hoodia g, synephrine, yohimbe) capsule for energy.

My question is other than juice, can you suggest modifications in lieu of table sugar for energy and hydration.


Both raw/organic honey or agave can work great in the homebrew (substitute in the same quantities for the sugar, or to taste), but you do have to shake well in order to make sure they don’t settle out.  Have you tried either of these?  Also, make sure to use at least the minimum amount of salt recommended in the homebrew as the temps rise, you need the sodium replacement if you’re sweating.

Sports Drink Homebrew

Please send us your questions for our Expert Sports Nutritionist, Kelli Jennings to “Ask the Sports Nutritionist“. Kelli Jennings is a Registered Dietitian with a passion for healthy eating, wellness, & sports nutrition. For more information go to

Nutrition Tips