Raw Food Recipe Salad with Tomato Citrus Jalepeno Dressing

Spinach, romaine, cilantro, heirloom tomatoes, orange bell pepper, jalepeno, green onion, mangoes, apples, oranges, lime, apple cider vinegar, bean sprouts, alfalfa sprouts and corn. I have been eating mostly raw foods for a couple of months. This salad dressing is based on one I learned from a video by "liferegenerator" - basically salsa and orange juice. The song is Boogaloo Joe Jones "I Feel the Earth Move".


Idyllwild Raw Running and Black Mtn Bouldering

Nearing Tahquitz Peak - trail runnin'
Summary: Climbed boulders @ Black Mtn - the clouds were amazing. Trail run led to sprained ankle. Read this and check out the photos!

On Friday at 11 am I left San Diego with running shoes, climbing shoes and flip flops. Arriving in Idyllwild, I was happy to find the “health food” store open and stocked with organic fruit (and a deli stocked with seaweed salads and pretty mountain girls). I bought some organic melons, dates and pears.

The medjool dates in Idyllwild kicked the ass of those purchased at Henry's in San Diego. I snagged a logo from the box: Bard Valley http://www.bardmedjool.com/ - highly reccomended! The cantaloupe was 99 cents a pound. On the weekend there is a fresh produce sale out front. 

Bouldering vs. Bowling

Black Mountian – in the San Jacinto Mtns- is considered So Cal's premier summertime granite bouldering spot . The boulders are big. The classics weigh in at an average of V6, which is about 5.13 for the non-boulderers, and roughly the height of a freeway overpass. As in all climbing grades, the rating of the climb has everything to do with the physical difficulty and nothing to do with the risk. There are some easier problems at Black Mountain, but I have yet to find them.

Bouldering with friends kinda like bowling. They both follow a pattern. Bowling is a series that follows the pattern “eat a hot dog, drink a beer, throw a ball”.... Bouldering is like “eat a Cliff Bar, take a pull from your Nalgene water bottle (or clean canteen for the neo-hippies) and wrestle a pebble”.

In a group, the dialogue between you, aka the climber, and your friends, aka the spotters, is caveman-basic. You climb up high and the spotters say “Get it! You got it!”.

You say, “Watch me! The feet suck. You got me? ”

They say, “I got you! You got this. There is a better foot-hold by your knee. Move your right foot. Don't let go, dude. Do it!”

In Bikram's Yoga they say “My brain, your body”...in otherwords, stop thinking and do what I say. 

I set off from my car alone.

Bouldering solo is both glorious and hideous. Glorious when you make it to the top and were correct about the possibility of a descent. Hideous in most other cases. For example, you may find yourself, as I did, just high enough off the deck – elated after finessing your way up a Yosemite-style 5.11 slab - only to find a gritty, decomposed, lichen covered, rounded top that offers nothing to hold on to. If you are like 9 out of 10 people, your mind will race. The little mountain birds zoom by your head but they don't give you advice (in fact their chirping starts to sound like the click of a caribiner) The chipmunk on the ground invites his friends over to laugh at you and eat more of your food. You look down to realize that you have traversed 10 feet to the right of your crash pad and are over a spiky rock, affectionately referred to as a “back breaker”. You imagine yourself sand-papering down the Yosemite-style 5.11 slab and buckling both ankles at the bottom – screaming for help -- while wearing nothing but running shorts because you thought your calf muscles would look cool in the self-timer shot.

You think back to other instances where climbers you know were injured. Personally, I remember when our good buddy Rick West took a bad fall while soloing Devil's Kitchen in Chico. He broke both ankles and wound up on the cover of the newspaper in a mountain rescue stretcher-thingy. He had pulled his shirt over his head for anonymity but the journalist went and used Rick West's full name in the photo caption, as I just did.
Nice, friendly, low boulder @ Black Mountain

So now what?? Do you down-climb a slab with no pad below you? Do you traverse to an area that appears to be over the pad and jump for it? “Stop being a wuss”, you tell yourself and slap your palm onto the gritty lichen. The rock is rounded so that you can no longer see your feet, which doesn't matter anyway because there are no footholds.

“Eff this! My hands sweating – Should I chalk up or just go? What a stupid rock. Is that a yellow-jacket? Shit, is this rock over a yellow-jacket nest? Or is that a bee? I might be allergic.”

Best best is to decide all of this before you leave the ground – but that would keep you from going in the first place. I traversed over the pad and jumped for it. Just like jumping off a high-dive backwards with a hard cover on the pool. Crash! Boom! Run away.  (Bailing from this boulder was not how I sprained my ankle.)

Trail Run to Tahquitz Peak Fire Lookout
 2 hours, 9 miles, 2500 ft 

I drove off of Black Mountain through the town of Idyllwild and slept in the parking lot at Humber Park, the trailhead for Tahquitz and Suicide Rock. It was a full moon and warm enough that I did not need a sleeping bag.

The next morning I woke up at six a.m., ate a honeydew melon and loaded my camelback with Bard Valley organic medjool dates and a liter of water. My goal was to run from car to the fire lookout on Tahquitz Peak and back. Keep in mind that I am a flatlander who lives 1/4 mile from the sea at 200 feet elevation. This run started at over 6000 feet and would end somewhere between 8500 and 10000 feet. The ascent burned my lungs. I became dizzy – not the good kind of dizzy. I ran 50 yards and walked 50 yards. I breathed through my nose so that the Riverside smog wouldn't roast my throat. Of course it would have been faster to powerwalk the steep parts and then jog the easy parts, but I was on a mission.

I passed about 10 groups on the way up to the saddle junction and then took a right for the final climb up to the fire lookout. Along the ridge, where the air was thinner but the terrain was easier, I had about two miles of grade A trail running. Chipmunks who chirped at me yesterday now ran for their lives.

Injuries never happen on the way up, so on the way down I hauled-ass. The ground was soft enough and rocky enough to make running painless and interesting. Most groups did not have time to see me coming, I just lept past them. A boy scout who was dragging himself along the trail asked me a question that my mind did not hear until 100 yards later. “How far is saddle junction?”

I wanted to run back and tell him it was around the next corner and then hide around the next corner so that I could see his disappointment. I wanted to ask him why he was out with a boy scout shirt on and no map. Then, I came around a left hand corner while chuckling slightly, planted my right foot and rolled my ankle until I heard it pop. My mind flashed back to every other time I had broken or sprained my ankles.

I wanted none of it. I sat down, took off my shoe, and my foot froze in position. The muscles and ligaments and possibly bones refused to move. I grabbed my foot with my hands and slowly coaxed my foot in all directions, gradually extending the range and the increasing the pain until it didn't hurt anymore. Five minutes later I had my shoe on and was back to running.

My ankle was sprained and I was full of endorphins so it didn't matter. It crunched and popped a few times and then fell into line. I kept running and thought about how happy I'd be the next time I come up and jog this trail even faster. (After reading a book by Dean Karnazes I can see that this sick mind-set is exactly what is required to run hundreds of miles)

My final round-trip time from Humber Park to Tahquitz Fire Lookout was 2 hours and four minutes - including several stops for food, water, photos and ankle repair. The 9 mile trail ascends and then drops about 2,500 feet, the majority of which is switchbacks. Two day's later, I am walking with a cane.

“You are halfway there.” I should have told the boy scout.  


Raw Food Rock Climbing

Raw Food Rock Climbing Fiasco - scroll down for tips!
I went to Tahquitz Rock in Idyllwild with my buddy, Mitch, on his first multi-pitch – 500 foot 5.7 climb plus 300 feet of 3rd class plus descent and two 45 minute hikes to approach. We got off route and spent all day..literally 8 hours in the sun... hanging on white rock! We had an awesome climb and I failed at my 80-10-10 quest. 

Is raw food rock climbing impossible??? 

I only brought banana chips that I had purchased at Vons! I ate a few hundred calories of watermelon in the morning, had an orange and set off for the hike.  I decided to leave the fresh fruit because it was heavy and I would have to pack out the peels.  Most “raw” vegan outdoors people (backpackers and climbers) eat mostly fat and protein from bars, nuts, powders and commercially dehydrated foods. 
I left for an all day climbing trip and only ate about 500 calories of fruit beforehand. Bad idea.
I did not plan correctly. Call me the Rookie Raw Food Dude.

I grew hungry soon and by noon was mowing the banana chips. I read the package and – DANG! - banana chips are mostly PALM OIL. All those calories, about 1500, in the bag of banana chips were mostly oil. Not 80-10-10, not ideal for climbing and not what I had in mind. They are not even banana chips. They are oil wafers. Needless to say, I ate the banana chips and PALM OIL and crashed hard later in the day. The descent was torturous.Why?? 
 I bonked. 
I hit the wall. 
I was under-carbed.

Bonking aka Hitting the Wall: (from wikipedia) In endurance sports such as cycling and runninghitting the wall or the bonk describes a condition caused by the depletion of glycogen stores in the liver and muscles, which manifests itself by sudden fatigue and loss of energy. Milder instances can be remedied by brief rest and the ingestion of food or drinks containing carbohydrates. The condition can usually be avoided by ensuring that glycogen levels are high when the exercise begins, maintaining glycogen levels during exercise by eating or drinking carbohydrate-rich substances, or by reducing exercise intensity.

Upon returning to the car I pounded about 5 lbs of watermelon and a couple of oranges and vowed never to leave on a climbing trip – or any other trip – without a supply of real food. (I also hit the wall in the Big Sur Marathon 1/4 mile from the finish and collapsed. The remedy was a can of pineapple juice.)

Raw food rock climbing is totally possible! 

Should I take this experience and say "raw food doesn't work"
................................... or should I plan a little better next time?

The Anasazi were cliff dwelling humans who ate corn, squash and beans. 
They lived on cliffs but they didn't live on Cliff Bars. 

Raw Food Rock Climbing Tips
1. Carb up before you leave the car. I should have eaten at least 1500 calories, maybe more before leaving the car. I burned between 5500 and 10,000 calories based on FitDay.com calculations. 
2. Bring raisins, prunes, dates, figs and eat them - they don't have wrappers like energy bars.
3. Nuts (stoppers) are good for protecting yourself in constricting cracks. If you want to eat nuts all day then climb a tree and sit with a squirrel, otherwise stick to the carb-rich, raw, (dehydrated) fruits.
4. Make the second carry un-dehdrated fruit -  if they aren't swapping leads.

Question of the Day!
Are you a raw foods climber or backpacker? Traveler? Is it possible to eat WHOLE raw foods while covering long distances away from stores – without dehydrating?? 


Fruit Based Diet Plan

To get started on a fruit based diet you'll need to to keep track of what you are eating - otherwise you will feel full and not get enough calories. Some fruit eaters eat upwards of 25 pounds of fruit per day! 

One month ago I decided to photograph my food for a couple of days. This was the direct result of re-reading the China Study and then watching a video of Tim Ferris speaking about one of his crazy human experiments. Tim Ferris said that taking pictures of food was more powerful than having a personal trainer. He was right in this case. 

Cataloging food made it easy to cut down fat and alcohol.....

The first thing I did was add more colorful veggies to make the photos look better. Then I used the pictures to log what I chomped on FitDay. People consider me to be a "healthy" dude, and when I saw the numbers from an average day I was pretty shocked. FitDay said that a big chunk of  my calories were from fat (up to 27%) and alcohol (a couple beers 12%). I had already cut down on protein thanks to the China Study - but didn't really get the big picture. 

I did a little research...youtube style... and came across Durian Rider, Doug Graham and other folks that set me straight on the raw foods tip. I read 80 10 10 and it made sense to me. Eat more fruit, eat less nuts.Within a week I went from half-ass healthy to full blown fruitarian...well, most of my calories come from fresh fruit - mango, watermelon, banana, dates... 

Beer is, like, 90-something percent water...

Fitday.com  has a category for alcohol into which beer and wine are placed. To me this doesn't make sense because only a small portion of a beer is actually alcohol. Either way it made me feel bad seeing “12% alcohol” on my graph so I haven't had a beer or glass of wine this week. I have two Sierra Nevada's sitting in the fridge. IPA's. Mmmm.

The Facts: 
Today, I ate 3,506 calories and my ratio was 80-7-13
Carbs 80% - minimum ; Protein 7% - good, Fat 13% - too high  

 I overshot the fat by eating a quarter-cup of almonds, half of an avocado and a quarter TBSP of olive oil.... really that is not very much fat for a whole day when compared to my usual “healthy” diet. Also, I ran out of ripe fruit and decided to "transition" with cooked brown rice and black beans. As I write this, I am eating a spinach salad with cucumber, sprouts and lime juice. 

Here is my almost 80 / 10 / 10 Menu for today (Click on it if it's too small to read)

Fruit Based Diet Insights of the Day:

1. Eat a  tiny bit of FAT to keep it 80 10 10. Specifically, around a half of an avocado's worth of fat per day.
2. My COFFEE consumption has dropped from the usual 4-6 16oz cups per day to only one. Fresh watermelon when I wake up has helped take my mind off the brew. Today, I drank this sugary sludge known as DATORADE when I woke up and forgot about coffee until around 2 pm.Datorade is crazy! Here's how you make some....
A half pound dates + 16 oz water ----(blend)----(wait)----(blend again)---> DATORADE
3. Even though I may crave other foods, as soon as I start eating fruit it tastes great and does the job. 
4. Making sure that I have enough greens (Doug Graham recommends a pound of leafy greens per day!) seems to keep the fat/salt/greasy-pizza cravings at bay. I am starting to see that taste is a matter of conditioning and that fruit is the best food for humans...at least this one. 
5. Make it easy to avoid meat by learning about the business.  I watched Earthlings last year and that did the trick.


80 10 10 Sample Diet

**Update July 2016: I no longer eat this much fruit or raw food. You can still read the blog post if you want to. -WD

Coasting: A Dubious Bike Ride from Washington to California Kindle Edition

I am in week three of fiddling with a fruit-based diet. The 80 10 10 Diet by Dr. Douglas Graham is a raw food version of a low fat plant based diet. The above graph shows the macronutrient breakdown for the day.


Carbs 87%, Protein 6%, Fat 7%

Today I had melon, dates, mangos, salad, hummus (not raw), a few gluten free pretzels (not raw) celery, coffee.... The difficult part - keeping track -  is actually quite easy using Fitday.com or Livestrong.com - (you need to do this if you want to succeed)... 


My zinc, calcium and selenium are low. I think eating more bananas and dates will fix this.  (Calcium deficiency is impossible by Durian Rider) 


Vitamins A, C, Iron, Fiber are through the roof. I am not sure why the RDA carb requirement is so low. I eat a ton of carbs and I am not fat.

B12 and Vit D  are zero for the day. Some vegans take B12 shots, some think it is found on the skins of vegetables & fruits as well as produced by bacteria in the gut (B12 for vegans). Vitamin D comes from the sun they say - I need to do more research before I spout about this. 

 I took a nap for an hour today and drank much less coffee than usual... I will do a post on that in particular. (I think fruit may be the key to reducing coffee consumption...in a nutshell.) 

I feel great eating this way. . I fart much less than I used to (also a post for another time) and sleep much better. 

What do you think about all this?