There’s this really interesting forum called “Clydesdales/Athenas” on BikeForums.net which is a section of the forum where heavier cyclists (200lbs+) can share information about weight loss or fears or heavy-weight friendly gear or just about anything. I like it because I think it’s a place where I can see that there are other riders like myself, and I can hear their tips and tricks for and from folks who are living life in the same weight bracket as I am.
The first time I heard the term “clydesdale” in reference to a heavy-weight cyclist it was because of Elden, aka the Fat Cyclist – and yes, I found his blog way back in 2009 because I literally Googled the phrase “fat cyclist” to see what came up. Were there others like me out there? Where would I find them?
Anywho, that’s where I saw his logo and the tagline (that I still absolutely effing love) “heavy-weight horsepower.” HELLS-to-the-YEAH. Somewhere in that reading I found the word Clydesdale used in this way, and I thought of how strong and majestic that image was. It was one of the first times in my life that I felt like I could identify my size with the potential for strength and power.
That’s why I personally am not into the “Athena” label that BikeForums.net uses in their forum. I like the concept of Athena as in the Greek goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, law and justice, strategic war, mathematics, strength, strategy, the arts, crafts, and skill. (Phew! She is a busy lady!)
I am sure that many women if given the choice would identify as this beautiful goddess as opposed to a mortal superhorse, and that is 100% absolutely a-okay.
However, let’s not forget that Clydesdales, as a breed of horses, are both male and female. It’s true that male Clydesdales are bigger, heavier and stronger than female Clydesdales – but she’s still a Clydesdale – and so am I.
Athena or Clydesdale? Tomayto, tomahto.
Lady Clydesdale? Sure, why not.
You’re a big girl. You can be anything you want.