Long Way From Big Sky

As always, I am off traveling again for work. This time, instead of Seattle, I am down in sunny LA for a medical conference. Boy oh boy is this place a different world or what? I just got to pay homage to this terrible song since I can’t get it out of my head from earlier today:

I wouldn’t say I love LA, but it’s a nice refresher from Montana, at least for a few days. I’m holed up in the Century Plaza Hotel, and I could have definitely done worse with accommodations. It has a great location, recent renovations, and plenty of history. Plus, I love professional service, and the staff has been outstanding. I highly recommend it if you’re looking to stay in Century City.

With my proximity to Beverly Hills, you just know I had to go explore the streets and there really is no better way than a leisurely run. Grabbed the running shoes and out I went yesterday:

First up, I headed down to the golden triangle of Beverly Hills. Rodeo drive was a fascinating display of all things shiny. Instead of dodging tumbleweed and snow patches, I weaved my way around gawking tourists, tiny dogs that looked like they had a more expensive haircut than I ever have, and parked Bentleys and Ferraris. Amazingly, I also saw some of the homeless lingering. I must say it was disturbing to see the exorbitant level of wealth (or some would say waste of wealth) contrasted so harshly against those in need. I digress.

No, I actually did not run through a building. Stupid GPS.

After that show, I headed back past my hotel and around Fox Studios. I wish they did a tour, but alas, the closest one can get now is the fence. Story of my life really. Anyhow, a neat piece of history that I passed was the Fox Plaza tower. It looks like this on a day to day basis.

Fox Plaza Tower

But what really is important is that it looked like this in Die Hard:

John McClain. I think he is the only thing Chuck Norris can’t roundhouse.

Today, I had an incredible day of practice altering lectures. Unfortunately, the weather turned a little sour, so I decided to hit the Equinox Spa and Gym attached to the hotel. Just to FYI, the hotel does NOT have its own gym. If you stay here and you want to work out “on site” you have to go to Equinox. It costs 20 dollars a day, but if you work out more than 30 minutes, it’s well worth it.  Any gym with its own valet service, valeting Ferraris at that, is something I had to see.

Equinox. Yes, I am a tourist and happy to admit it.

When you head in, it’s pretty much spa from the get go. All marble, soft towels, immaculately clean. Lockers have electronic locks to use. Shower stalls are private with frosted glass and rain shower heads. There are two hot tubs in the men’s locker room. Just be ready to soak in the buff; I guess that’s how it rolls in Century City. Sorry, no pics ladies.

Gym itself is pretty status quo except for the presence of numerous trainers helping clients. The coolest thing was that they had 2 Woodway Treadmills. I had heard of these trail simulating treadmills before but I had never actually seen or used one. Without a doubt, it was the best indoor running experience I have ever had. I’m sure they cost an arm and leg, and I would prefer to be outdoors. But if I had to run on one a lot, this would get my thumbs up. 7 miles at 8:20 pace then a 2 mile graded cool down.

I topped off the day with another unique dining experience. I visited a place called The Counter at Century City Mall.

Its a chain, but there surely isn’t one in Montana. It’s basically a build your own burger joint. I was pretty skeptical at first. I mean, I sort of already build my own burger at Fuddruckers right? It was when I saw the options that I realized the beauty of the place. Look at these check boxes!

Blueprint for yum.

Now, no offense to my most recent favorite, Hop’s in Kalispell, but I have not been able to find a blue cheese burger that I could actually taste blue cheese on. So, I went with my standard test and ordered a burger topped with blue cheese and bacon. For giggles and heartburn, I added on some guacamole and a fried egg. (I need to gain some weight….). I also got it on a ciabatta role instead of a regular bun. Behold the masterpiece that arrived:

Notice the fries in the back. It’s called a fifty fifty order. You get half regular fries and half sweet potatoes fries. You could also split it with onion rings instead.

Amazingly, The Counter is the only place in recent memory that has made a blue cheese burger that satisfied me. I devoured that thing like a hippo swallowing a dwarf (no, it’s not in bad taste….the story is not real!). There is now happiness in my tummy.

I have another full day of LA tomorrow and then it’s back to the real, beautiful, incredible world of Montana. But I can survive one more day here. :)

Oh, before I go, I have to mention that I was recently given the Kreativ Blogger award by Kelly at Right on Hereford, Left on Boylston. She is also a doc running for all the right reasons. Thanks so much Kelly!

So, this is sort of a chain award and I apparently have certain things I got to do to keep it going. Here they are:

  1. You must thank the person who has given you the award.
  2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
  3. Link the person who has nominated you for the award.
  4. Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting.
  5. Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers.
  6. Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
  7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated.

I’m off to a good start; first three taken care of. Okay, seven things you might find interesting about me:

  1. I don’t like apples. And it has nothing with their reputation for keeping doctors away. They make my teeth hurt when I eat them!
  2. The thing I find the grossest in all of medicine still is the removal of an ingrown toe nail. I can do them. I cannot watch them being done.
  3. I was almost named Elvis.
  4. I have run a marathon dressed as Elvis.
  5. I like cats. No, I only have one.  Yes, I like dogs too.
  6. I adore the culinary history and nuances of drinks. The story of why an Indian Pale Ale is so hoppy is a prime example.
  7. I love everything aviation related.

Okay, and now let’s do some nom nom nominating!

http://allseasonscyclist.com/ – Mad bike skills and mad reviews.

http://blog.tri-sports.com/ – Well duh. No but seriously, the have some great fun stuff on there. Like the shaved legs aerodynamics test. J

http://smoothsmartstrong.wordpress.com/ – Another age grouper making his way through the sport. He was at Arizona 2011 as well!

http://drinkrunyoga.wordpress.com – Name says it all.

http://www.quocvngo.com/ – Asian and racing. What’s not to like?

http://btothes.wordpress.com/ – To say Beth has crazy awesome style would be an understatement.

http://makeyourlifehappen.wordpress.com – Coming back from an injury and on her way to Ironman CDA. This will be one to watch this summer!

Whew…I think I wrote enough tonight now. Night!

About Ironvan

From couch potato to Ironman triathlete in 2 years.

Posted on April 30, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Congratulations on this highly prestigious award. Live long and prosper.

  2. I saw a Maserati parked at the back of our gym parking lot this morning… yeah I’d be parking in the back too if I had that nice of a car. They kind of look like sharks if you look at them head-on.

    I’m going to my first legit medical conference in June, and holy $#!& was I blown away by the cost. Wow! But excited none the less.

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