Friday, January 29, 2010


Thanks to April, I have found myself a new, delicious, yet HEALTHY craving. FAGE! Pronounced Fa-Yeh.
I like yogurt. Especially really thick yogurt. But this is like yogurt on steroids! But good for you, natural steroids. A 6oz. cup of 0% fat Fage is only 90cal, and 7g of carbs (7g sugar) but packs 15g of protein. Plus, it is super thick and creamy. I had the 2% with honey this morning. Ridiculously good. I had the 0% 6oz cup at lunch and threw in some strawberries. Again, delicious. Another bonus is the packaging. The flavored varieties are set up side by side (think those cottage cheese side-by-side things). The cool thing is that the packaging folds over and you can pour in as much or as little of the peaches, honey, whatever, as you want. Or you can keep them separate and scoop as much as you want. Try it. Its awesome.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Weekend Wrap-up

Usually, anytime "they" say Southern California got hit with some "real weather" it is considered a drastic overstatement per the definition of 90% of the rest of the country. However, after a week straight of rain, wind, hail, flooding, TORNADOES (not kidding), and snow, I think the weather system that moved through So. Cal. last week would meet anyone's definition of a "real weather."

I was lucky enough to have a recovery week on the schedule, although I am sure Coach was kicking himself as it would have provided some great opportunities to work on my mental toughness. And my luck continued into the weekend as the weather cleared and we were left with clear skies and sunshine for all of Saturday and Sunday.

It was Sean's B-day party on Saturday afternoon, so the training got started early with a quick ride and long run brick. A good day on both accounts. Made even better by closing it out with some good company, good food & drinks, and this view to top it off:

I know I am bad about the picture taking, but its usually because I am riding with a group and don't want to slow everyone up. Well Sunday, I had 6hrs of riding by myself, and I vowed to be better with the camera. Here's what I saw:
Sunday started with a view of Marina Del Rey & Snow Capped Mtns.
Leo Carillo State Beach
Leo Carillo from Mullholland Highway
Mullholland Canyon
And the ride ended with a Sunset on Redondo Beach & Palos Verdes.

A pretty awesome day in the saddle.

Friday, January 22, 2010


Bananas are one of my favorite fruits. I have one in a smoothie immediately following each of my hard morning trainer sessions. I also stuff one in my jersey pocket for rides as a natural alternative to processed bars, gels, etc...

Banana Bread is awesome. Bree makes an insanely good one with coconut oil, agave, and I add strawberries or raisins.

Slice em up in oatmeal with some cinnamon. If you're lucky enough to have a Trader Joe's nearby (or a really nice friend who will buy and mail them to you, cough, cough) I highly recommend their "Flattened Bananas." They're Awesome.

Put em on a popsicle stick and freeze em for a healthy dessert. Slice em up and put em in a pan with some non-stick spray and some honey. Whatever, just eat em.

Here are some Banana facts:

They contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy.

A single banana can fuel a good chunk of workout time.

But energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.

Run down: The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

Anemia: High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.

Blood Pressure: This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.

Hangovers: One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake,
sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

Heartburn: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from
heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.

Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and
avoid morning sickness.

Stress: Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your body's water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be re balanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

Strokes: According to research in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas
as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%.

So, a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals.

Happy Dining

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


If you haven't heard and aren't experiencing it right now, Southern California has been hit by what, by So Cal definition, is some serious weather. Thankfully, I am on a recovery week in the training schedule right now. But others are not so fortunate. Really, it is pretty much impossible to ride outside right now. I am stoked I only have a few hours on the trainer this week. Its supposed to clear up by Saturday afternoon, but I think its still gonna be a time when the winter/wet gear needs to be hauled out. This excites some people. I think the chlorine is getting to her. Stay Dry!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


After some persuading and nagging, Coach finally submitted and let me return to Club Ed and the Wednesday night track workouts. This is the club that really got me into running. Ed Avol is the master!

Last season Coach was worried about my calf injuries and just injuries in general given the increased workload he was putting me through. So he excluded track from my schedule. This season, he is not as worried and my persistence paid off. Last night was my first night back with the Club Eders and Ed had a good one in store for us. After a brutal trainer session in the morning, 4 miles at speed had me thoroughly SHELLED. This morning's masters was rough and I had to take a NAP when I got back. Proof that my return to Club Ed was WORK!! Stoked to be back.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Translated = Sun and HILLS

That was my weekend. With one month of "real" training in the books it was time to get back to the training grounds of North County SD with Charisa, Kevin and the crew. Saturday was a nice 4hr ride where we stuck to the flats along the coast. The group got a little broken up because I had to ride for 4hrs while most others were going 3. But like a true soldier, Jonathan (the medic who caught me (literally) after the finish at Oceanside last year) , showed his colors and stuck with me. In fact, at a red light he stuck a little too close, and when I pulled up quick (admittedly without warning to him) his wheel found mine and down he went. Fortunately, no harm to bike or body and we were back on it when the light went green.

Sunday was SUPPOSED to be an easy 5hrs, flat terrain, high cadence. Well, we all got conned into letting Tall Nick lead the ride and that wasn't really in his plan. Granted, I knew with Nick, Patrick Baldwin and this dude Phil (former BMXer or Mtn. biker who does things that I thought could not be done on a road bike), that the ride would not be "easy" at all times, but this route was more than I had bargained for. 3hrs in and some BURLY hills and I was cursing nick under my insanely heavy heaving breaths. Its really not that cool to get to the top of a climb where you swear you almost puked your pancreas, and see some guy (Phil) alternating between balancing on his front and rear wheel standing still. After each turn I figured, "Ok that has to be the top." But no, the hits just kept on comin. Charisa has some cool pics of the ride here. Finally out, we had a good flat section back to Carlsbad and actually only ended going a little over on time.

All in all, another great weekend in the SD training books with some awesome friends and training partners.

I will devise a scheme to get back at Tall Nick for this though.

Friday, January 8, 2010


Sometimes it strikes me how we say things as greeting or parting salutations, that are treated as totally meaningless. "What's up?" Made an annoying spectacle of by the Bud Light commercials of a few Super Bowls ago. "How ya doin?" Similar query and likewise, usually totally ignored. Seriously, say "what's up" to 10 people and see how many of them actually answer reporting something that is going on. Better yet, see how many answer with "good" or "fine" I love it when that happens. Sometimes its pretty funny what we say.

Today I held the elevator for a guy. When he got off he said "Thanks, have a good day." I responded with "See ya later Partner." Partner? Seriously? What the hell was that? I don't think I have ever called anyone "partner" I didn't even think to say it. I stood there thinking to myself "Where the Hell did that come from?!" The word just came out of my mouth.

I am off to SD and the Casa de Wernick Resort and Spa this weekend. It will be great to return to the old training grounds with the old crew. I am really looking forward to it.

Have a great weekend. Partners.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Christmas Gifts

My sister wrote me a poem that gave me two of the best: Introspection and Inspiration

"Every moment in my life has the power to define me. Each second can either
crush me; or drive me to become a stronger, and better human being.
The ultimate outcome of these moments... are up to me"