Healthy Architecture: Dr. Art Mollen & Taliesin West

Last Wednesday, I had an unfortunate nasty nine-hour layover after my flight from Guaymas, Sonora and before my red-eye flight from Phoenix, Arizona to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It could have been bad, but it turned out great. I dreaded being trapped in an airport conference room for hours on end. Thankfully, I connected with some new friends and was invited to attend an event at Taliesin West in Scottsdale.

When I left Sky Harbor International Airport, I felt liberated! As I drove towards the McDowell Mountains, good memories returned. Debbie and I were last in Scottsdale exactly two years ago for the Javelina Jundred.

Taliesin West is the former “winter camp” of the famous architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. The 45,000 sq/ft home is a desert masterpiece and is now part of the non-profit Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. The grounds were beautiful and made even nicer when they were bathed in the late afternoon sun. It was 90 degrees F when I arrived at Taliesin for the event.

We got a fabulous tour from a wonderfully enthusiastic guide. She walked us throughout the various buildings that make up the “home.” The artwork was fabulous. The stonework was amazing. All the wood and stone came from the 600 acre property that Wright had purchased for less than $13.00 an acre (average). Wow, what a spot! With the mountains as a backdrop, Taliesin blends right into the land, which is a signature of Wright’s architecture. I could say a lot more about what I learned on the tour (e.g. there is a fireplace in EVERY room), but I wouldn’t do it justice. You have to visit for yourself.

In the gift shop, I learned a bit more about Wright. One DVD playing on loop caught my eye. It was about the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City, which Wright designed. Apparently, getting the museum built was a colossal struggle. It is now considered a masterpiece of architecture and was way ahead of its time.

I was smitten by Taliesin. It is a fabulous place to visit. The location was perfect for the speaker, Dr. Art Mollen, a noted Phoenix area physician, author, and athlete. Mollen is founder of the Mollen Clinic and several other ventures. I was so happy to hear someone speak about health and fitness from an all natural point of view. He isn’t big on medicines and he promotes healthy living and longevity by stressing three points. You have to have good habits and do these three things. I paraphrase:

1) Diet – healthy eating habits with low animal protein (e.g. meat, poultry, fish, dairy, etc.) intake.
2) Exercise – every day active aerobic movement.
3) Positive mental attitude – speaks for itself

This makes so much sense to me. I’m vegan, so I’ve got number one covered. I exercise every day, so two is taken care of. Three is probably the biggest struggle for me, but I think I’ve got it licked. Mollen cited a study he did of centenarians, people who have lived to 100 years-old or more. He learned so much from them. Speaking of centenarians, the New York Times did a nice piece on the milestone recently. I also read yesterday that the current record holder, an 114 year-old woman, passed away this week. RIP. Mollen also cited the China Study, which I have blogged about before and stresses how the Western diet is responsible for many of the diseases that shorten our lives (e.g heart disease, diabetes, etc.). Hearing Mollen speak was a pleasure.

Mollen is an active runner and triathlete, so he walks the talk. I’m going to track down one of his first books, which he said is fittingly titled: Run for Your Life.

So, on a beautiful evening, my hellish layover turned into a wonderful affair. Bravo.

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So that little injury caused by my @renocxnats crash on Saturday afternoon wasn’t so little after all. It’s a broken leg (fibula). Prognosis is good, but it hurts like heck. My blog post report with blow by blow details is linked in my profile. #cxnats #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #crossisboss - - -

This #lifedeathcyclocross stuff is true!!!! I crashed out of the Singlespeed Championship @renocxnats (on the dreaded off-camber) but not before having more fun. @artroti43 raced on the frosty course ❄️ at day break. 🚴🏽 We met a lot more @horsteng #crossspikes customers. I hung with little bunny hopper 🐰 Miles, the Junior 11-12 year old Silver Medalist.🥈I cheered for Nic, who represented @the_ccap in the Junior 15-16 age group. @sportstert and Iva came down from Tahoe to cheer LOUDLY for me. 🎺 I got my badly sprained ankle taped and iced. I had a beer. 🍺 I’m even looking forward to my red eye flight home ✈️ . Best of all, I’ll see @trailrunningmom and the kids on Sunday. I can’t explain the sensation, but despite the pain, I’m ready for next #Cyclocross season to begin... after some rest. #teamhorstsports #cxnats #horstengineering @parkavebikeshop #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross #crossiscoming You could say that at least for this week, I’m married to my #bicycle - - -

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@seven_cycles #sevencycles #horstengineering #teamhorstsports @bicycleseastct #crossspikes #cxnats #renocxnats #Cyclocross #crossisboss @therichardsachs didn’t have the race he hoped for but it was still great to see him @renocxnats and “pit” for him. He said he officially started his second off season, but first of 2018. @artroti43 and I played soigneur/mechanic for 90 minutes, but minus the massage! atmo #renocxnats #richardsachs #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #hauteframebuilding #Cyclocross #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross I previously hadn’t published this image, but it recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2017 @appalachianmountainclub Photo Contest for the People Outdoors category. Check out my blog (link in profile) for the interesting story of his photo (shot with this iPhone 6s), a trip report from this amazing Maine adventure, and past contest history. I love this image of two of my favorite women. I’m barred from submitting images to the 2018 contest, but I’ll be back in 2019. #appalachianmountainclub #baxterstatepark #katahdin Congratulations to Master Park, the Park Family, and the entire team at Park’s U.S. #Taekwondo at the Grand Opening of the new facility in the former VFW building. Our kids love it! So much better than being next door to the pawn shop and liquor store.😊#tkd 🇺🇸🇰🇷 This morning, the @trinitycollege Main Quad was bathed in beautiful sunshine ☀️but it was frigid and the wind was blowing! ❄️ The chapel was packed with an overflow crowd to celebrate the (shortened) life of a lovely friend. She will be missed. #circleoflife 🌏 #Repost @horsteng
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