Thursday, December 31, 2009

Last Blog Post from Honolulu

The day is here that I'm leaving this islands for a bit. Soon to return for the Great Aloha Run in 2/15/10!
It's been real Hawaii.
No doubt, my life turned around 1080 degress on these islands. For that, you [Hawaii and my friends] have a very special place in my heart.

So many good things happened here and the people I met, the food I ate [and then ate again and again and again] will never be forgotten. I loved every minute of my time here and you will ALL be sorely missed.

And with that, I'll wave a shaka, say Aloha and do the head-thing.
Next time we talk, I'll be on THE LEFT COAST!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


BIG ANNOUNCEMENT [in case you didn't see that in the title!]

I will be relocating from the beautiful, bikini-clad shores of Honolulu to the foggy and damp shores of San Francisco, CA on 12/31/09. As most of you readers know, I was severed from my job sometime in September and have been looking for jobs in Hawaii to no avail. Given these circumstances, I looked elsewhere and found a home working as a Senior Statistician at a company called Quality Planning. This group does risk analytics for car-insurance companies and I'll be on the research side.

Perks about it:
1) 22 days of PTO. Can you say Hello Hawaii in February!
2) Nice benefits plan
3) No aloha shirt and slacks.
4)...No slacks
5)...No slacks
6) Jeans and shirt = okay. tucked in = not required
7) Most importantly, it's interesting work! oh thank goodness!
8) Hours are fairly flexible. can take hours off the front and stay late, or come in early and leave early. Either way, it's nice that there are also work-from-home options too =)

And though I'm excited to push the re-start button, I will be leaving some awesome views and awesome friends behind in Hawaii. Thank god I'll be back often to race here. I owe so much to so many people that have helped me out. There are more names on that list than the US's terror watch list [and some of you belong on that list! =)]...errr...bad joke? nah. I left out the part about strapping-shit-to-undewear.

All in all, I am reluctant to admit that I'll be leaving the islands and quality friends here. To use a hackneyed line, "I found myself here". No, I really did though. I'm pretty sure I'm a cyclist who just so happens to run, rather than a runner that just so happens to cycle. But before this, I was a former-fat-ass-lard-slabbing-jelly-doughnut-yes-i'll-take-more-butter-on-my-biscuit kid. Now, I'm far from it and have no intentions of looking back. I'm going to take the next blog posts to recap some awesome memories about the islands I have and tips for those in Hawaii that want to know my favorite grinds.

"Leave the bike, ship the kale" =)
-Best said with a Scottish accent.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Somewhere in between, Xmas passed?

Whoa, and just like that another Xmas gone by. What made this one a bit more significant was that I was away from family for the first time in my short-lived life. And so the mexican hot-chocolate, vegan tamales, and unwrapping bundles of goodness would have to wait. Sigh...instead...I made the above pizzas! It was so good, even Jun liked it [look at his smile!]

Yep, those are vegan pizzas with TONS and I mean ASSLOADS of fixins' including: jalapeno peppers, caramelized onions, mushroom, pesto, sundried tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, asparagus, eggplant, broccoli, raw vegan 'alfredo' sauce...and tons of other stuff. Basically it was so good, you'd want to slap yourself for eating anything different all these years.

Along with all that vegan goodness, we washed down all of that with Opus One wine, Vueve Cliquot champagne, a merlot, a pinot and a cab. That was the most alcohol I've consumed since grad school! And by most I mean like 5-6 glasses of wine and 1 glass of champange. I was totally roasted! But I think I'm entitled to this seeing as how it comes once [twice...three times...check that, four times] a year. Enjjjjjjjoy!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Xmas Chatter

All this talk of Xmas has got me tired and worn out! Ugh! Normally, I’m not this pooped but man, it’s been a long holiday season [and to think, it’s not even Xmas yet!]. Right now, the weather in Hawaii is roughly 80 degrees but the weather inside the office is close to 55..brrr….I’m shocked icicles aren’t sprouting from the ceiling yet. Pretty quiet day here in Hawaii and the office in general. I imagine things will come to a screeching halt in the coming days and so will my own training as I take some time too for holiday. Didn’t think I did that did ya?!

I’ve decided to try a new recipe inspired by the Garmin-Transitions team nutritionist Allen Lim. Obviously, I have “vegan-ized” it for my meat-less taste preferences but feel free to add your own twist on these rice-cakes.
NOTE: If you’re familiar with Hawaii then it’s like a musubi. For those familiar with Japanese culture and food, this is essentially an o-nigiri. Having said that, let’s get started on the ingredients I need to buy:
1) Brown rice [probably 1 cup should do for now]
2) 2 tsp of sesame oil
3) Furikake seasoning [seaweed with sesame seeds]
4) 2 tbsp wheat-free tamari OR Bragg’s liquid aminos [I like Bragg’s personally]
5) 1 tbsp agave syrup to give it a ‘teriyaki flavor’.
6) 1 packet of shiitake mushrooms.
7) [Optional] Raw-vegan ‘Parma’ powder [Like parmesan cheese but taste is waaaay better and obviously better for your health] to taste.

Combine all of this nonsense into a rice-cooker and blast away. I have made rice like this with meat back in my dark-aged-meat-eating days but this will be much better. Anways, after it cooks, stick in a brownie pan and make ‘bars’. Drizzle with some more agave nectar and tamari and put in oven a few minutes to get a nice crust. Then, pop tray in fridge and consume as needed. Because there are no meat-products and this is all vegan, it should keep for a little more than a week. I cannot and WILL NOT attest to this simply because most of the food I have never makes it one week anyways! =)

In other news…I ran 7 miles in 44 minutes this morning. My legs hurt now. Check that. They’re really sore. Can you say recovery ride?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Oh Mariah....what are you doing to me!

I walked into the office this morning to an interesting note written on my whiteboard [see photos]. If you've got eyes like mine, even bold, size 22 font wont do it for ya so I'll save you the trouble. It says "Dear Alex, All I want for christmas is you! Love, Mariah".

In truth a co-worker plays this damn song like every day - or rather, USED to. Seriously, it was on repeat1 I swear! I mean, I love Mariah and all [see older posts] but this song just was too much. Instead of getting in the Xmas spirit I would get mad! I was like 'ahhhh f*ck, AGAIN!'. And the CD that you're seeing, that's a burned CD, 12 songs deep of the same damn song: All I want for Xmas is you.

Good lord. Pass the vodka please =)
Breakfast - fruit salad
Lunch - Miso marinated tofu with eggplant, brown rice, lime spiced coleslaw
Dinner - Oatmeal, almond butter, bananas, apples, blueberries and clif bar.
NOTE TO SELF: Say NO to cruciferous vegetables for breakfast and lunch. Not fun in my tummy. Super bloating...ugh.

7.5 miles today with extreme bloating. I's either cabbage or kale that do it to me! romaine? no problem. kale or cabbage? Let's not go there shall we...

Friday, December 18, 2009

What about Xmas?!

Given all the lights around town, I’m under the impression that some holiday is coming up? Oh that’s right, it’s Xmas. And what’s that mean? Shopping. How much of that have I done? *Some. More to go? A LOT. You see, most folks associate Xmas shopping with walking around malls, interlocking arms, laughing the day away while sipping on a peppermint mocha-fappuccino. Yeah…see, here’s the thing: walking around malls AFTER ripping your legs apart isn’t as appealing anymore. Add to this the ‘satisfaction’ of an afternoon run and online shopping becomes the clear winner.

Funny, I used to like doing the shopping thing but now it seems getting me out of compression tights, a solid dinner and a tall beer is virtually impossible. Speaking of tearing legs, Mike and I climbed Tantalus road yesterday and the highlight was the guavas consumed at the top of the road. Let it be known on this blog that in addition to mejdool dates, I AM A KNOWN MURDERER OF GUAVAS – in particular, strawberry-guavas. Wanna know what I’m doing tomorrow? Laps around tantalus with plenty of ‘guava-stops’ factored in. I’ll be sure to take photos of that one. On the descent we had the opportunity to see what downtown Honolulu and Waikiki looked like just as the sun was setting – breathtaking is the only word I can use.

Outside that, a pretty quiet Friday here in Hawaii. Getting ready for the weekend ‘festivities’ chief among which is to clean my condo and do some laundry. But before we can get there, an afternoon run down Waikiki Beach calls out to me. Guess I just never learn do I? =)


AM: off-day on the bike [gasp!]
PM: 7.5 mile run
Diet –
Breakfast: Fruit salad
Lunch: Tofu-brown rice balls with hot-sauce and mock tofu ‘chikin’ strips
Dinner: Going to be Oatmeal, peanut butter, bananas, blueberries and apples.
Snacks: Clif Vegan protein bar, water, banana, protein shake

Whole lotta food today ya dag?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pak dat Shiiieeet!

Roughly translated: “Kid, give up that running shit and concentrate on cycling!”. My buddy Mike utters this phrase to me and I guess it’s got some truth. It’s hard to have cycling AND running ambitions. And by hard, I don’t mean like solving differential equations…no, hard as in breaking down the body like crazy. Running and cycling is bad enough but combine this with running HARD and cycling HARD and you’ve got a recipe for trashed legs. And did I mention…do this everyday with 1 ‘off day’ [no running, but still cycling]. That shit adds up son.

Right now, I enjoy doing both but I see the turn coming. Either be a damn good cyclist and a middle-of-the-pack runner [not like I’m not already] or a recreational rider [yawn] but an elite runner. Tough trade off. That’s like asking me to pick between Mexican food and Thai food. No can. I’ve also fielded requests for dual’s, CX, and MTB. I listen, nod my head and say “word son, sounds like fun.”

Running gives me great, great, GREAT joy. There’s something about waking up, throwing on some shorts, lacing up your shoes, and keeping the appointment you have with yourself. By the same token though, there’s also something to be said about throwing down serious watts on the bike or climbing really steep hills [only thing I’m reasonable at]. The one thing about cycling I really enjoy and love is that it’s so hard and painful [I’ll refrain from my usual ‘that’s what she said’ comment]. Ask any cyclist worth his/her salt and the answer to the question: “What’s at the core of cycling” is unanimous – SUFFERING. Suffering is absolutely at the core of cycling. Don’t get me wrong, I suffer when I run but unlike cycling, there’s no such thing as ‘recovery’ [can’t just stop running in a race]. This is good because I can a) regain consciousness, b) regain blood-flow to my arteries, and c) feel my legs again only to suffer some more later.

But I’m not ready to make a call on running or cycling. All the runners I see say ‘damn kid, you’re built to run, go be a runner’, while all the cyclists I know say ‘Pak dat sheeeiiit’! Decisions, decisions.
Breakfast – fruit salad with a hefty dousing of agave syrup
Lunch – Vegan burger on whole wheat bread and lime-spiced napa cabbage ‘slaw.
Dinner – Either pasta or oatmeal..haven’t made up my mind yet!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Aftermath of yesterday

1,246 kj’s later, my legs were completely trashed last night. We got out to a wicked-fast start and I can remember a good couple miles where my heart rate stayed north of 180 bpm! We slowed down a bit towards the climb of Hanauma Bay and on the way back but guaranteed, we were hauling some serious A-S-S for a while. Safe to say that when I got home, I pounded a SunWarrior raw vegan shake, a Clif builder’s bar and threw on the compression tights.

Good workout and just what I needed to help jumpstart those 4 days of inactivity last weekend. Honestly, I don’t remember going that long without running or cycling…scary shit. Safe to say the early morning recovery ride was needed and deeply appreciated. And now that the lactic acid has been all but drained it’s time to do it over again with a solid 7 mile effort because hey, what’s dinner without the feeling of exhaustion and borderline-starvation?

I don’t remember when but sometime in March when I got ‘really serious’ about my running [really serious = buying short shorts], food looked different. Food was no longer something to go out for, to reward oneself with, or to experiment a new cuisine. Food was – and currently is – fuel. It’s simply about fueling my body for the punishment / suffering that goes into running and cycling [not to mention at work!]. I don’t remember eating for the pure ‘enjoyment’ of eating…well, that’s not true. I remember that one year ago I memorized the subway daily footlong menu and would pound one of those for my lunch everyday [yep, but that on repeat one on your ipods]. Nowadays? That delicious fruit salad with some lemon and a LaraBar. Times change.

And on that note, it’s time for me to hit the pavement and go hustle out a run while my legs are still ignorant about what is to come. Here’s the daily log:
AM – Recovery cycle
PM – 7 mile run to the end of Waikiki beach and back. Bikini-clad women holding surfboards? Check. Dark Oakley sunglasses? Damn right =)

Breakfast – fruit salad
Lunch – fruit salad [soo good, I had to have it again]
Dinner – Pasta with tofu.

NOTE: I would have had fruit salad for lunch too but ran out of bananas. =(

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Early-morning-before-dawn-run? Yezzir!

“Woke up this mornin’ and feeling like P.Diddy”…or so the line goes anyways. For those of you young folks that listen to ‘pop music’, that was a lyric taken from Ke$ha’s song Tik-tok. Truth is, I did wake up this morning although without the P.Diddy-esque feeling.

Hoping to obtain this euphoric feeling of ‘I-rule-the-world-and-pop-bottles-of-champagne-and-date-hundreds-of-models-and-reside-in-Miami’, I set out for a solid run of 5 miles at an easy 6-minute-ish pace. Thing I dislike about running the morning is that it’s still dark in Hawaii. As such, I can hardly see the picturesque views of Waikiki beach let alone 3 meters in front of me.

Nevertheless, I knocked out 5 miles, drank my raw vegan protein shake, consumed my fruit salad mix and went to work happy and tired. Around 10am, my legs started to tighten and even now, I can feel soreness building up. No bueno. Why is that no bueno? Well, I am pounding some pavement on the bike in the afternoon and will need to do my best ‘No-really-I-am-not-tired-or-sore’ impersonation =)

Will let you all know how that goes tomorrow morning assuming I can a) get out of bed and b) find my computer.
Here’s the daily Log:
AM – 5 mile brisk run
PM – Cycle session

Breakfast – Fruit salad with Clif protein bar
Lunch – fruit salad with soy mixed berry yogurt [giving this a try…]
Dinner – Pasta with tofu and arrabiatta sauce.
Snacks – water, banana.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Aloha all!

Somewhere between today [Monday, December 14, 2009] and last Thursday [12/10/09], I turned 25 years old. Holy crap. I was so jazzed because at 25, I would FINALLY be able to rent a car [!!] BUT in some states one must be 26. Sigh….and so, my bday was rather anticlimactic. Car rental policy = fail. Eating lots of good food and drinking champagne = success.

At 25 years old, I’m supposed to say that the world looks different, that I’m more mature [highly doubtful] and that my taste buds for fine wines have refined [more doubtful..or as some at my job would say “mostest doubteliest”…not joking here either]. In truth, the only thing that has changed is that my cycling tan-lines have become less prominent. And for those that know me, you know how much I pride myself on my ‘other’ t-shirt that adorns my body.

Did a quick weather check in SF, 38 degrees. Damn that’s colder than the blood running through my veins! The picture above is one among the many bottles popped for my bday. Veuve Cliqueot [positive this isn’t spelled correctly, but then again, not even the French can spell their own words correctly]. I missed some Bdays on 12/11 and so for those of you I missed, I toasted to your good fortune this morning as I put down a green smoothie composed of bananas, pineapples, blueberries, and kale. Not too shabby either.
Here’s to deuce-five. Let’s make it a good year

Monday, December 7, 2009

Back to running [hopefully]

The pictures I'm showing were taken at my pre-birthday birthday party [see later post on this] held at Phuket Thai. Nothing much, just a very small gathering of people. On the menu we had green papaya salad [a personal favorite], fried chicken [for the non-vegans], tofu pad-thai [too much sauce for me], and tofu coconut curry [personal favorite]. Naturally the vegan options were a favorite! =)

This week was good, climbed Tantalus in the big ring a couple of times. This pretty much shot my legs to holy hell and back and made running all but impossible. I'm telling you, this cycling shit is difficult! Today though, I got back on the good and righteous path to enlightenment. In the AM, I had my decaf soy latte and went out for a recovery ride of 30 minutes. Work and then a solid 8 mile recovery run tonite. Felt good but that's probably because the pace was incredibly pedestrian - hence, recovery run.

Here's the daily food log:
Breakfast - Green smoothie.
Lunch - Fruit Salad [see later post]...this is delicious when you refrigerate prior to eating.
Dinner - Brown rice pasta, tofu, arrabiata sauce.
Snacks - Water, Clif protein bar, Raw vegan protein shake[s].

Word son.

p.s. Rie was kind enough to get me a raw vegan chocolate cake! Wow! Was it good? Um, hell yes. Check that. Fu*k YES! You're all wondering how many slices did I have? 3 including Alex's crust and Lydia's cake [she said the raw vegan cake was TOOOOOO sweet!]

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Rain Rain Go Away...

Was sooooo excited to skip outta work and go riding with my soon-to-be-employed friend Mike. I ran out, changed into a partially torn Liquigas-Doimo kit and cycled to our usual meeting point. During the way there, I noticed the dark clouds looming overhead and the ridiculous amount of traffic on the road. You see, the problem with living in Hawaii is that it's an island; thus, at 5pm, everyone and their sister takes to the road and there simply isn't enough space. For those that have never been to the islands, there are only THREE highways. Wanna guess their names? H-1, H-2 and H-3. Nice.

Anyways, we set out to ride for a bit and got dumped on with rain hard at the end. At which point, we turned around and hobbled back home. Certainly not enough of a workout to justify all the calories I consumed but hey, when is it ever?!

Waikiki is also pretty hairy to cycle because of the crowds that sometimes have exceptionally beautiful women. At which point, steering into a pole as Tiger Woods did becomes plausible. Okay, bad joke, bad joke. But seriously, the Japanese Travel Bureau AKA JTB has a trolly that takes hordes of Japanese tourists [see above photo] around the 'scenic and friendly' parts of Oahu and oftentimes, those tourist busses have some giddy high school girls that scream at the sight of a cyclist, let alone runner with no shirt on. Normally I'd take donations but it's tough to catch all that change while running / cycling =) Again, I kid, I kid.

Tomorrow is my pre-birthday birthday party. You read that correctly. Just like at 10am I eat my pre-snack snack...this is kinda the same thing. Of course, there will be vegan food, probably some beer and wine...hopefully not mixed together - did that waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much in college. Hope your day wasn't filled with rain, traffic, giddy tourists [not so bad], and people who can't drive.

Thank goodness tomorrow is Friday.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Visit to the Doctors

Today I went in for my final visit to the doctor's office to check up on my hand from run in with the car a few months ago. Though I have no finger nail, the doc says I'm 100% healed but the bone in the top half of my thumb still shows some fracture signs. It healed quickly for which I'm grateful for!

And thank heaven Campy ergo-shifters work if you have working thumbs! Prior to that I was "index-finger shifting" which was hairy at best. But now, I can use my thumbs and shifting is obviously much better.

Apparently, your finger nail grows back in 3 month 'phases'. First 3 months the nail looks gross [like it is now]. Next 3 months it gets a lil better and then the final 3 months, the nail is 'as good as it's gunna get'. Guess I got 8 more months to go so we'll see. Would take a photo but it's kinda gross in fact. I'll just leave you on a good note: got out and ran my ass off for 7 good miles to Kapiolani Park and back. Good effort but man, it's getting darker and colder earlier. Translation = I took a 10 minute shower when I got back and sat in the hot tub. Was even thinking about a glass of wine but then I thought better of it and pounded a beer. =)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Okay, this post kinda has nothing to do with running or cycling but something I felt compelled to write about. Went into Long's Drugs today [no longer on the mainland, we have this in Hawaii] and I was buying St. Ives apricot scrub and this woman next to me had a basket full of different soaps, creams, creams of soaps, soaps of creams and all this other crap that I knew nothing about. I looked at her and smiled and said 'that looks complicated...thank goodness mens products aren't that bad!'. She then proceeded to tell me the subtle differences between various anti-wrinkle creams and how one promotes collagen while the other depletes it...basically, sounded like ancient greek to me. Best I could do was nod my head in bewilderment.

And so there's my statement today, man it's rough being a woman. Gotta decide and do a ton of stuff that most men have no f-ing clue about [nor care about]. Respect son.
How you can tell the difference between various nail polishes and colors is beyond me. Myself, I keep it stupid and simple...just get Dr. Bonner's all in one soap. But ahhhh...talking some sense into women is sometimes more complicated that a denuclearization conference between the US and North Korea...simply won't happen.

On that note...had a good morning run. Nothing too crazy and epic due to the afternoon bike ride. Solid 7.5 miles...I'll put in 8 tomorrow and will drag my panzy ass to bed on that note.

Good fight, good night <--Remember Celebrity Deathmatch on MTV2?!?!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Grocery Shopping with Alex Part Deux

I need to preface this blog post by stating that mama tellez stocked me up with some quality groceries which include:
1) Almond milk [yum]
2) Roasted eggplant tomato sauce [yumm <--Note one more 'm']
3) Frozen blueberries, blackberries and raspberries
4) Celery...lots and lots of celery.

Now that we got that shit straight, let's get to what's in the basket shall we? This weeeeeeeek:
5) 2 bags of frozen pineapples. I'm basically going to make my delicious fruit salad all week.
6) Hummus - because hey, how else am I supposed to eat all that celery?
7) Lavvazza Italian Decaf Espresso [one shot of this is more than enough for me]
8) Ricera Mixed Berry soy-free, gluten-free "yogurt"
9) Bananas...can't get enough of these bad boys.
10) Apples, I'm recently on a chilled apple fetish.
11) Kale for morning smoothie
12) Chalula Hot Sauce! Can't find this anywhere! Stuff tastes sooooo good too!
13) Guiness Beer. More proof that buddha loves me =)

Put in 7.35 miles running a slow pace. Definitely a recovery run given the hell that is to come tomorrow. Can you say 9 ass-whooping miles in the AM followed by a bike ride in the PM? Ummmmm yea...I think the word you're looking for is: F#$%!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Soooooooo not looking at my bike tomorrow

That's how I'd describe my feelings right now for physical activity. I'm beat today and my legs - well, I don't think I have legs.

I sat and soaked in the hot tub and while that should make things feel better, my legs are still trashed. Let's see, how to describe it....not as bad as post-race day but resembles the feeling I get when I do my long runs.

Went grocery shopping today and I'll let you in on what was bought at whole foods. I felt the need to reward myself - this is a constant need btw - so I'm sipping a beer right now. I think old age is catching up to me =) Hard to believe I'll be the big deuce-five in 11 days. Crap. =)

My hope is that your legs aren't as trashed and that you can keep your eyes open for more than 9 seconds. I've passed out twice writing this short post...shameful isn't it.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Delicious Fruit Salad

I got this recipe from the Cervelo Test Team's [pro cycling team] website where it lists their post-ride meal when they're doing their long 3-week stage races. Obviously, I've doctored it up a bit to no include refined sugars and stuff and I have attached 2 photos for you to see!

It's got everything the athlete needs. Carbs, good fats and some protein (4:1 ratio, carbs to protein). Here's what you'll need [feeds an Alex-size person]:
2 bananas sliced
1 orange, peeled and chopped
1 crisp red delicious apple
a round or two of fresh pineapple
1/2 lemon
some blueberries
raw granola if you got it, otherwise, a coarsely chopped LaraBar would suffice
some agave nectar

Chop fruit in chunks, add to bowl. Squeeze some lemon juice over the fruit salad, then top with raw granola and a generous drizzling of agave nectar. final step is obviously to devour!
As a note, that's the ricera yogurt I'm eating [made from brown rice and obviously, vegan]. Best flavor so far is strawberry.

p.s. I have to mention this or else I get my ass kicked. Went into Victoria's Secret today and smelled the scent "Very Sexy Hot" which smells very sexy - which, is ALSO a very good scent! I can see why women wear this...very good smelling for the record. Sigh...okay, now that my dignity is trashed I'll recover the parts with an electrolyte drink and compression tights. Hotness.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy "No turkey for me, thanks" Day

Aloha from sunny Waimanalo Bay Beach, Oahu!

Had a great Thanksgiving day with the family. Started off with a nice cup of tea, and then a 55 mile ride at an early 6:30am [man that's early]. But hey, gotta work to burn off those calories! Saw a lot of people on the road surprisingly. I was thinking, damn, these people were up before me and I was up at 5:50 on a holiday. Crap.

After the ride, I quickly showered, shaved and was back at home to get my parents. We stopped by Down to Earth foods where I got my Thanksgiving day meal which consisted of:
2 slices of gluten-free vegan 'pizza' with roasted tomatoes, tofu and caramelized onions, mock 'chikin' salad, 5 slices of seitan 'turkey' with garbanzo gravy. Kapow, put all those lost calories back in one sitting! =) My dad witnessed what he called 'a shameful display of gluttony' as I pigged out on the beach with the family.

For dinner, I had an amazing fruit salad that I need to share with all of you. Awesome recipe and stupid simple. You'll love it, promise.

Line of the day:
[while dad is driving]
Dad: You [Alex] drive with a lead foot and your mother has tunnel vision. Everything clear on the right? [he's making a left turn and asks my mom this]
Mom: I dunno, I have tunnel vision so I guess it looks alright!
Classic stuff!

Once again, pics from the beach and my parents passed out.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Someone mentioned Thanksgiving today?

Faster than I can say "No turkey for me thanks", it's the eve of Thanksgiving. and my, what an interesting Thanksgiving it's been. This time last year, my parents were visiting me on the islands and spent Thanksgiving. You can see a picture of my mom and dad sleeping on the beach looking like a pair of beached whales! [thank god no whalers were there!]

At the time, I was still a pretty overweight kid as you'll notice from the photo [contrast this with the one of me sipping fresh coconut water in June this year! OR the one of me sharing some raw vegan desserts with one of my hanai mothers]. It's crazy because this lifestyle that I currently live, basically: eat, sleep, rest, cycle, run, shit, shave has been on repeat for an incredibly long time. And while it feels like I've been doing this my whole life, the truth is 1 year ago I was no where near where I am today. 2 completely - and I mean COMPLETELY different people now.

There's a lot to give thanks to and I'm going to save that blog post for tomorrow but for now, I'd like to give a hearty 'thanks' to life for always giving people chances to remake themselves. Ask my parents or anyone that knew me before what I'm like now and the answer will be pretty unanimous: night and day. And that's the beauty of life...that we get to reinvent ourselves many times over.
...And so, green smoothie in hand, cheers to you life. Despite your cruelty and unfairness at times, I can't imagine a life that is different then the one I have now =)

Spending the day with family tomorrow and we'll probably watch some movie and eat at the beach. Will be sure to take plenty of photos. Have a good Turkey day everyone, and if you can help it, go easy on the meat.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Some might call it distasteful... regards to the provocative photo of Lady GaGa that I have. In truth, I chose that photo among many for precisely that reason: shock. I think part of what gives her that unique panache is her lack of conformity to things most fine "normal". Take for example the above photos taken at concerts. That's what she wears and let me say, it turns heads - more than once! So for the few that find it distasteful.."there's nothing else I can say" =) [know what song that's from!]

In other news, been getting into fuyu persimmons a lot and right now they are falling. Super sweet and jelly-like in the middle. Been making some killer green smoothies using blackberries. Here's the recipe
1) frozen blackberries
2) 2 bananas
3) lots of kale
4) 1 pear
5) water
Blend, whip, and enjoy!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Lady GaGa - The Fame Monster

Ummm....hell yes! Lady GaGa's highly anticipated album, The Fame Monster released today and there are two words that I think describe it best: HOLY SHIT. Let's forget that whole what-gender-is-she-he-argument for a moment and take the album for what it is: DOUBLE URANIUM! [not even platinum son! too good for that! for those of you Chappelle Show lovers, that term was from what skit??????]

It was so good, I made a separate iTunes playlist which is basically the entire album. Which begs the question, why the hell did I need to create a playlist when the album would suffice? Good question. My guess: Senior moment. Cuz in like 3 weeks, I'm turning the big deuce-five! A quarter century old. 75 years away from being a centenarian! Social security, senior rates at movies, and Ross's Senior Appreciation Tuesday's here I come!

Before I conclude this post with more Lady GaGa awesomeness, let me also give a big shout out to everyone in the Yay Area. Soon, very soon, I have some good news to reveal.
Until then, you'll just have to hear me blab on about Ale-Ale-Alejandro 24/7 =)

Dear Dad -

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you for naming me Ale-Ale-Ale-jandro.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

TIRED...flat out TIRED.

Lately, I've been really, REALLY tired. Dunno why really. My coaches say because my season is all but over there is a feeling of lethargy running rampant throughout my 139lb body. Right now, I just want to lay down the base going into the offseason - especially as we get closer to December and weather in Hawaii gets "colder" [65 degrees = BRRRRRRRRR!]

Having said that, I put in some okay-miles on the bike and some okay-miles running. My legs will certainly feel it but hey, that's why they make recovery tights no?

Even now as I type this, my eyes are getting pretty heavy and it's not the beer I had either! More than likely it has everything to do with my body saying "Hey Alex, let's take a few weeks and just put in some easy base miles and then ramp up again mid-December." Chances are, that's just my lame excuse that I'm not ready to but out intense run workouts juuuuuust yet. Enjoying cycling and learning and living.

But I wanted to let you all know that I'm still here and still kicking - just not as hard right now. Things will ramp up slowly as I put in more miles but for now, the little break has been good. And with 12/31 drawing closer, I need to focus on some job-related things anyways. sorry about the blog body is pooped [would say my mind is pooped also but this wouldn't be any different from an ordinary day!]

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Race Day Photos

Here are some photos of race day taken at the event.
...and yes, this is a cop-out for blogging today. waaaaaay too tired to think about what to write so here you go.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Now, we hit the restart button

Okay, tomorrow, it's time to rock and roll with the running again. Indeed, I love, love, love cycling but I need to get back into running if I'm to have any shot at being in decent condition for Honolulu. Tried to eek out an 8 mile recovery run but then quit around mile 6 due to some intense bloating. Truly sucked to be out there. Every two miles I had to pee and my stomach felt full of water despite not drinking any for 4 hours prior to running. Lesson: NO MORE CABBAGE.

Been having some serious fun with my espresso machine [thanks Andy!] and it's been a learning process. My dad still drinks a ton of coffee so I make him espressos on it; still haven't figured out how to do the single-shot illy packs yet but small steps...

Been sleeping a lot too, wonder if that's just my body getting tired on me and not feeling 100% recovered. Although I do feel that way. Odd no? So starting tomorrow, regular training regimens will begin again and I'll be back to running hard / cycling hard. Lucky for me, Mike has a pretty similar schedule so we'll be pushing pedals all afternoon tomorrow. Night everyone.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Vicious attack!

I was in Kahala with my parents for the day and we were grocery shopping and just futzing around for the most part when suddenly, this rabid t-rex tries to take a chunk of my face off! Lucky for me, I'm trained in last-second-t-rex-attacks-martial-arts so I knew the only way to ward off this creature it try and outrun it. Good thing I had on my Nike Air Max's =)

It's been really nice having family here. They're staying through the end of the month which is cool. However, we had this god-awful thai coconut curry today...nothing at all like phuket thai. This one was lacking coconut milk and heavy on ginger....ugh...pretty lackluster. BUT, we did buy a bunch of Oogave Soda ['soda' made with agave sugars, no caffeine, no gluten]. Rootbeer and Watermelon cream soda are my personal favorites!

Hope you all had a pleasant weekend and were able to stay away from all those crazy t-rex's runnin' around the place. It's Jurrasic Park in this place~

Friday, November 13, 2009

And just when you thought it was over...

....MORE tan-lines!!! What do you think of those bad boys! Sexy huh?! Yeah....I'm quite proud of these legs, where they've been and how hard they've worked. Notice those lines too! I think I'm one of the few cyclists on the islands that is actually proud of tan-lines. Like a badge of courage, I show them to all. What's worse is when I run in the dark, you can REALLY see those lines. Grosses me out just thinking about it.

Oh man, after a solid 7 mile run effort yesterday, my legs pretty tired this evening. I eeked out a meager AM cycle followed by a recovery 6 mile run. Tomorrow will be a gnarly effort. Lots of cycling in the AM, hopefully get a haircut before I embark on a 16 mile run. No more recovery, no more taper-up period. Full gas for the next 2 weeks before another 2 week taper down. Sigh...thank god there is no goal attached to Honolulu.

Listening to: Doorman by the Clipse
The Album: Till the Casket Drops [almost all produced b Neptunes]

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Green Smoothies - A step by step guide's come down to this. Here is a step by step description of how to make my perfect green smoothie...or at least the one I'm digging at the moment. It's a little ass-backwards so forgive me. The first picture is of the finished product whereas the last picture is what goes into all that goodness. Let's get started...class is in session!
1. 3 freckled bananas [freckled = ripe]
2. 4 kale leaves
3. frozen blueberries
4. frozen mango chunks
5. raw cacao nibs
6. Laughing Giraffe Dessert r"aw-nola"

Picture 1 shows the ingredients.
Moving on to picture 2, we see 3 bananas in 3/4 cup of water. Easy peasy.
Picture 3 has blueberries and mango chunks added to the mixture.
Picture 4 shows the kale leaf being pulled from the stem. You need to do this because it will taste too bitter and like a blended salad [gross].
Picture 5 AKA 'the magic' is the end result of 20 seconds using the Vitamix. All done. Notice the blueberry color...looks nothing like a green elixir huh?
Taste is super sweet with some bitterness from the cacao. Promise you'll like's so easy, even a caveman can do it. [thank you, Geico]

Ran 7 miles today. Oooooh man that was punishing. Hadn't run hard in 2 days and I'm feeling it. Gracious...nothing that some brown rice pasta and chocolate stout beer can't solve.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Recovery Process: 95%

Today marks the 10th and last day of my 'taper up' period before I start a 3 week all out effort in anticipation for the Honolulu Marathon. I think part of the reason why I'm feeling so well is I've been going around riding my bike a lot which has temporarily stopped the incessant pounding of my quads that running involves.

One thing: riding in Hawaii at night as some scary shit. No, like, really. All that surf and sun must get to them causing their vision and their cognitive reasoning to become clouded to the point of near-blindness and hence no respect or awareness of cyclist - or pedestrian's for that matter! One would think that wearing bright colors [reflective yellow] would do something. Nope. Wearing bright yellow is the same thing as wearing gunmetal black.

Lesson: Get lights and illuminate yourself like an xmas tree.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Recovery Process: 85%

It's been about 8+ days since I raced and was back in the bay area so things are getting better. I'm healthy and not injured which is great. My last race as some of you may recall, I was injured and was sidelined from running for about 2 weeks. However, my coach and I are tapering up so in the next 2 days, I'll be at 95% or thereabouts, ready for my final race of the season, the Honolulu Marathon, all 26.2 miles of her.

Today was a crappy day at work...but made better by consuming my chocolate stout beer. It's interesting but if I said it was bitter you all would go "no shit sherlock, it's beer". Yes, I get it. Oh! Before I forget! I tried my brown rice 'yogurt' and it was wonderful! I had it in peach flavor and it was marvelous. Topped off with some raw granola and you've got yourself my pre-snack-snack.

Speaking of raw granola...I got a goody pack from my sponsors at Laughing Giraffe desserts! They sent me some raw granola in two flavors:
1) Pineapple-Macadamia nut crunch
2) Orange-walnut-cacao granola
Incredible stuff. When you try it, you'll wonder why the hell you ate anything least, that's what I felt like.

Running feels okay, put in a solid 6 miles at a slow pace and no post-run soreness [yet]. Recovery ride on the bike in the AM. Here's the diet log...lot's of cooked food for some reason.
Breakfast - green smoothie with blueberries, dates, kale and bananas
Lunch - Tofu with brown rice and spicy cabbage salad
Dinner - Brown rice pasta and tofu 'chikin' strips.
Snacks - Water, brown rice pasta, Clif protein bars, beer. Sweeeet.

Drinkin' a beer on a Monday...what says corporate america more than that!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Grocery Shopping with Alex

A few of you have wanted to know what's in Alex's grocery cart so I decided to dedicate a blog post to this topic. Before I get into what all that goodness is, please note that on Saturday, I bought 2 bags of steel cut oats [NOT instant oatmeal, you have to slow cook this one], a shitload of bananas, papayas and bananas. Now that we've established this, I'll get right into the selection of goodies.

5 Brown Rice 'yogurt' cups in blueberry, peach, strawberry and vanilla flavor. Soy-free, dairy-free, gluten-free...pretty much free from all sins except goodness. I miss yogurt and I'm so happy there's a vegan-friendly alternative that is free from a lot of 'normal' vegan stuff [gluten, soy, nuts, etc..]
6-pack of Bison Organic Chocolate Stout beer - I'm working on my bitter tastebuds and figured I'd try with this beer. Drinking it as I type this blog in fact. Not bad...but bitter [no shit sherlock]
Bananas - because what trip to the store isn't complete without a ton of bananas
Brown rice pasta in fettuccini form
Arrabiatta sauce for the pasta
2 bags of frozen blueberries for smoothies
1 bag of frozen mango chunks
Kale...lot's of Kale.
Clif protein bars which are ALSO vegan.

So far, the best one people have liked about my Jens Voigt ode was the one about hair not growing on titanium, steel and brass.

Friday, November 6, 2009

An ode to Jens Voigt

Probably one of my favorite 'big guys' on tour. Here are some awesome 'facts' about Jens you probably never knew as I flipped open an old issue of ROAD magazine [bold indicates hearty laughter on my part]:

Jens doesn't read book. He simply attacks until the books relent and tell him everything he wants to know.

Jens doesn't spin or mash the pedals. He kicks them into submission.

Jens puts the 'laughter' in 'manslaughter'

Jens climbs so well for a big guy because he doesn't actually climb hills; the hills slink into the earth in fear as they see him approach.

Jens' testicles are bald because hair doesn't grow on titanium, brass and steel.

Jens once had a heart attack on the Tourmalet. Jens counterattacked repeatedly until he kicked its ass.

If Jens Voigt was a country, his principle exports would be pain, suffering and agony.

Jens Voigt believes it's not butter.

Jens Voigt doesn't complain about what suffering does to him. However, suffering complains about getting picked on constantly by Jens.

You are what you eat. Jens Voigt eats steel for breakfast, fire for lunch, and a mixture of titanium and carbon fiber for dinner. He washes it down with a tall glass of the tears of men he dropped, affectionately known as 'The Milk of Human Suffering'.

MY PERSONAL FAVORITE: Jens challenged Lance Armstrong to a "Who has more testicles" contest. Jens won with five.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

You & me plus the devil makes 3

Sigh...this is going to be a rough post. I anticipate a loooong ass night. One of those nights where we all have had at one point in our of reflection and thought - mainly of the past and where I've been and what's to come. Obviously, I'm not in the mood to talk about it and I won't bore you all with the details.

However, you'll all be pleased to know that someone near and dear is slowly adopting the green smoothie revolution and so are her parents! Slowly but surely, the green smoothie revolution is at hand. Ryan and Bethany, you're clearly next. Do take note of her special blog post and pay attention when she talks about proportions. Couldn't have said it better myself Amelia!

She advocates a 3:1 ratio, sometimes even 5:1 [go on with your fruit self!] when it comes to fruit to vegetables. What does that look like? 5 bananas for every cup of spinach. Water and soymilk if you need it. Try, read what she has to say let me know what you think.

Myself...well, let's just try and make it to tomorrow morning shall we. Cheers.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Green Smoothie Anyone

I'm taking this post to talk about green smoothies. A few of you have been hankering for more recipes and more 'user-friendly' ones for those that don't / aren't willing to make the full sacrifice to raw-vegan smoothies. No fear, I've thought of you and I have a smoothie that will go against ANY smoothie at Jamba Juice. Matter of fact, I'm thinking of blending one, serving it to them and then making the workers slap themselves for drinking anything different. Thoughts?

So as a rule of thumb, remember: when in doubt, add another banana. This is pretty much my life motto when it comes to, just have another banana. What's the worst that will happen? More fiber, more sugar [the good kind] and more energy. 70% fruit, 30% greens and you'll be fine. It may look revolting [see above] but you'll be alright. Promise.

This smoothie is called Chocolate-Green-Monster. It's ridonculously good. You read that correctly. RIDONCULOUSLY good. Simple, stupid and delicious. Perfect for the athlete and packs more food than Oprah Whinfrey stuffing herself silly with cheethos.
1) 3/4 cup water
2) 3/4 cup UNSWEETENED soymilk
3) 4 ice cubes
4) 2 bananas
5) Some kale [pull leaves off stem]
6) 3 Mejdool dates
7) Raw cacao nibs
8) Raw cacao powder
9) Raw-eos to crush and put inside smoothie

Proportions? Who needs em. Just combine them and mix it in a blender to your taste and it'll be good enough. Above are pictures of the ingredients, me devouring them and then my new 'got-smoothie' ad which has me sporting a green-smoothie 'stache. Hot huh? Notice the other picture where my mom snapped the photo too soon? Thanks mom!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Can't even run 5 miles to save my life

You heard it here first, I struggled so hard to run 5 miles today. Breaking a 10 minute pace seemed impossible. My coach has me running super easy for the next week and I have to. Only good thing is cycling seems alright. Can't get up hills for a few more days...still draining lactic acid.

Good news is, I can sit down pain-free. Whew. Have to say I've been watching Russell Peters on youtube...hilarious stuff. A canadian indian guy doing standup, can't go wrong with that. Check him out. Haven't been on iTunes yet. Will give an update when I know what's out there.

AM - Easy cycle
PM - Super easy run. And I STILL hurt.
Breakfast - Pineapple,banana,kale,date green smoothie
Lunch - Banana, kale, dates and cacao nib green smoothie. This was so good, I'm going to post photos of it tomorrow. Seriously, try and make this one, it's dirt easy and super tasty.
Dinner - Brown rice pasta, tofu and gluten-free, vegan pizza.

iTunes update, Tuesday Download:
50 Cent feat Ne-Yo, Baby By Me
Tiesto - Kaleidoscope

Monday, November 2, 2009

One word describes it all: OUCH!

One day after the race, I can safely say my legs are shot to holy hell. It hurts to stand, to sit and to lie down. Thus, rendering me useless and unfit for human life. Normally, this is no different from how I am most of the time with the slight exception to my athletic feats. However, given this soreness, it hurts to do anything and nothing which begs the question, what doesn't hurt? Answer: FLOATING in a pool. That's okay. Everything else - which is a lot of shit - hurts.

And of course, my mom is in town so we went grocery shopping, ate yummy vegan food and had great Thai for dinner. It's good to see her as always. However, I'm sad to be back on the island. I miss home and those that I connected with. And so, the flight back home was riddled with the following tracks:

Let me tell you something - T.I. ['when the attraction is apparent, it's hard to stop starin' - classy line from a classy rapper, no doubt]
Sakura - Ketsumeishi
Sunspot - Armin Van Buuren
Vanilla Twilight - Owl City. when I'm 'moody'.

But seriously, step your game up with that T.I. song

And now, the long week of recovery runs and easy bike outings begins as we prep for the Honolulu Marathon in a few weeks [awful being a racer I tell ya!]. I WILL however pop some bubbly this week and drink a few beers to celebrate my first win of my age group.

-Keep it pimpin', pimpin.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Wham, Bam, Thank you ma'am

Done. 1:18.35 seconds, good enough for 6th overall, 1st in age group and some hardware on the return trip. That was BRUTAL. Not long hills like the SF half but short and sweet ones that came hard and fast [that's what she said].

Ugh, that sucked a big one. Seriously, the hills here were not that steep but constant. legs are totally f$%&$d. On to the buffet of vegan goodies now!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

1 Day Left - All that's left is to race

Here we are at t-minus 1 day before race day. Already nervous about it and the conditions. Race day will be foggy around 50 degrees [brrrr], guntime at 7am.

You can follow me at that gives live results of the race and you can see how I do mile after mile. Here's my information:
1) Alex Tellez
2) Bib Number: 2135 [thank you! =0]

Backpack is all set to race. Larabar, 2 bananas, protein shakes, compression tights, warm socks, and some positive thoughts. Not sure how I'll do, I don't feel as good as I did for the SF marathon but a top 10 would be huge in my opinion. That would be awesome. Big runners coming too, last year, winner put up a 1:02...that's BLAZING fast. I'm hoping to bust 1:15 although it's a hilly course but not quite as hellacious as the SF marathon.

This is the first race I was given elite status. Now all I have to do is earn it. Let's show em what vegans can do tomorrow.

I'll see you in 13.1...

Friday, October 30, 2009

2 days left - What a day

Busy running around getting stuff done and meeting with folks. Actually, I'm really tired and looking forward to getting some decent sleep tonite. As such, this blog post won't be that long but make no mistake...I had a massive dinner. This is the BIGGEST meal I've had in a long time...I'm talking like 2,000 calories of bananas, bananas, blueberries, oatmeal, larabar, vegan granola. Basically, an ass-load of food.

Yesterday was too special to write something about.
Instead, I leave you all with this quote from Jens Voight, Saxo Bank Pro Tour rider:
"When I win races, I have to put everybody including myself, of course, through a meat grinder. Everybody has to suffer, suffer, suffer until they’ve all had enough."

Let me repeat his last words one more time:
Everybody has to suffer, suffer, suffer until they’ve all had enough.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

4 Days Left - Aloha

Whew, good 7 mile run AND a clean condo! Man, all that was well deserving of the two slices of gluten-free, vegan pizza =) In roughly 3 hours, I'll be in the air, flying towards the Bay Area AKA 'home'. I can't wait too!

Also got some goodies from my sponsors today. One of which is my favorite raw vegan protein shake...SunWarrior. They make raw vegan protein shakes using stevia [leaf that is 300x sweeter than sugar] with 35 grams of protein. Awesome flavor too, doesn't taste like chalk like a lot of whey shakes do. [p.s. whey isn't vegan either].

Alrighty everyone, it's Aloha time for me. Compression tights, vegan electrolyte drink, oatmeal, boarding pass. Check. See you all in a few hours.


Exercise log
AM - walking fat-ass to jamba juice
PM - 7 mile easy run

Diet Log -
Breakfast: Mango-banana smoothie
Lunch: 2 slices of vegan pizza
Dinner: oatmeal with bananas

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

5 days left - The ugly side of cycling: Tan Lines

Just look at those tan lines. The first one is of my arm WITHOUT my watch on. You can CLEARLY see the sleeve and watch tan lines [photo taken in broad daylight] I guess that's what happens when you are a cyclist in Hawaii. The sun is intense and we're out there for hours at a time. Same goes for my legs. I mean, there's an obvious line on each thigh where my cycling bibs go to. Then tan, then a slight tan where the sock-line is at. Ahhh, such are the aesthetic sacrifices we make for the sports I love. I think it's safe to say that I'm not winning over hearts with my tan-lines and most likely, turning heads for all the wrong reasons =(

But I figured I should share this with you in defense of cycling. Truth is, I'm somewhat proud of these tan lines. In other news, I'm about 80% done with cleaning my condo, just one more section to go and then everything will be kosher for mom. Chances are, she'll take the white-glove to the condo and I'll have to clean it over again but at least, she won't know until she does this test. Hey, gotta fake it 'till you make it right?

On a plane trip to Cali in less than 24 hours. Definitely getting excited about that! Oh crap, I should probably pack too huh. Tomorrow morning will be busy packing, out for a quick bike ride [probably won't be able to do this actually], prepping the house and getting in a quick run outside if I can get out of work early. We'll see.

Diet Log -
Breakfast - Mango smoothie, LaraBar
Lunch - Brown rice pasta and tofu
Dinner - Oatmeal [not tired of it yet!]
Snacks - Apple with peanut butter, water

Exercise Log -
AM - recovery ride...from what really?
PM - 7 mile run, 107 bpm.

I'm going going back back to Cali Cali. Got some goodies in the mail from sponsors that I'll post photos of and my check + award for the SF Marathon where I placed third. Taking orders for people who want stuff from Cali. Mike, I got you on the clearly aren't messing around with Trader Joe's ;-)