Hello, my name is Alex Velando and I am a happily married, 29 year-old from Austin, TX. I began my career in the restaurant industry 11 years ago as a server. I have worked exceedingly hard to be the General Manager of one of the busiest restaurants in Austin. I have been with my current employer for 10 years and average 70 hours of work a week. I am very passionate about working hard, physical fitness and a healthy diet. I make a conscious effort to balance work, marriage, triathlon and nutrition.
It was different four years ago when I found myself in a mild depression. I was completely overwhelmed with the stress from moving to a new city for the first time, opening a new restaurant, being a new husband, etc… Being healthy was not at the top of my list. This was a big mistake, but we have to live and learn! For a year I stopped working out, stopped eating healthy meals, and switched to pizza, chocolate, and ice-cream, (basically a junk food diet)… I became sedentary and watched T.V. during my breaks. This used to be my time for running or heading to the gym. I easily packed on 30 pounds in less than a year! I started having pain in my knees from lack of exercise, plus the excess weight my body was carrying around. My resting heart rate shot up to 89 bpm and my blood pressure jumped to very high, unhealthy levels. Something had to change because I wasn’t happy with myself.
It was in late 2009 that I discovered triathlon and decided to make a life-style change. I started running again, cycling and swimming. Most importantly, I started eating healthy again. I decided to dive head first and made my first triathlon an Ironman 70.3 in Galveston, Texas. It was quite an experience and I was hooked! The obvious next step for me was to sign up for a full Ironman, and luckily in Texas it was announced The Woodlands would host the inaugural Ironman Texas 140.6. So I signed up and got in! I knew being a competitive triathlete was going to be a huge challenge, but I felt that the end result would be worth it. I hired a triathlon coach who helped develop my workout plans. He also taught me the importance of supplementation, especially during vigorous training. Training for endurance sports is hard enough on your body, but when you combine 20+ hours of strenuous physical fitness plus another 75 hours of working on my feet, I could not have finished without nutritional supplements. NOW supplements were recommended to me as the best product to take because NOW makes a high quality product in the U.S., at a price that everyone can afford. I started off by making sure to take my essential recovery supplements, L-Glutamine, BCAA, and L-Cartinine. My triathlon coach recommended to take Tribulus terrestris root for extra energy and to make sure to take additional anti-oxidants to prevent free-radical damage from all of the physical activity. I did my research and also began taking CoQ10, Astaxanthin, Rhodiola rosea root and GliSODin.
By May 2011, I was a lean 6’3” 173lbs triathlete ready to conquer the Ironman distance. I went to get a physical and my doctor was shocked at the positive changes. My resting heart rate was 54 bpm and my blood pressure and cholesterol had dropped to optimal levels. My doctor told me I didn’t need to return for a physical for 3 years. I was sleeping better, eating healthy and my stress levels dropped. My life has totally been transformed and NOW has played a major role in the transformation.