Blog Archives

A run to remember

Saturday’s run was honestly one of the best I’ve ever had. Not because of the distance (I only managed 18.5 of the 19 I had planned), or the speed (sloooow), but of the overall way my body and mind meshed. It was a long day, with an early start, but somehow things went much better than I had expected.

I woke up at 4:30am to a miserable Charley horse, clutching my leg in pain and getting angry with myself for being dehydrated. I immediately chugged some water and returned to bed until 6am. In earlier days I would have taken this incident as a bad omen for my run and come up with an excuse to sleep through my run. But not Saturday. At 6am I got out of bed, consumed a lot more water and some challah. By 6:45 I had suited up and was ready to get out for this long run.

And wow was it chilly! Since I live in the foggier area, it was kind enough to be windy and cold. Great, right? So I started on the 3.5 mile journey to the office where a running club was meeting. A mile in I found myself going in the wrong direction and had to take out my phone for directions. Just as the group was preparing to head out at 7:45, I shuffled up. I managed to run 4.25 miles to the start (yay for getting lost!).

We separated into groups and went off. This running club incorporates intervals into the workout and my group does 6 minutes of running, 1 minute of walking. As we began to run towards the hills I felt okay, my mind knew I could do it. Even with the hills I was able to keep up without falling behind. Yes, there was one hill that threatened my being, but I was able to complete it without discouraging myself from continuing on after.

Last week when I ran with this group, I deeply considered dropping out at 8 miles instead of 12. I didn’t, but as the 10 mile mark came up I had to drag myself off to continue. This week I knew that I was doing 14 with the group and that I had no option otherwise. Each time some people fell off to do a shorter distance I waved at them instead of trying to sneak into their group.

It never crossed my mind that stopping was an option. Slowing down was something I considered, but the two other individuals pushing me to 14 miles didn’t seem interested in changing pace so I moved ahead with them. And as we returned to the starting location I was overjoyed to know that I had done it. I conquered the hills, finished (most of) the miles, and was still in a very happy place.

I don’t know how I did it, mentally pushing myself further than I ever have, but I can’t complain. My only hope is that I learn how to harness this power so my future runs can be just as successful. (San Francisco Marathon in less than three weeks, eep!)

More about my dilemma with intervals during the marathon later this week…

How do you mentally fuel yourself during runs? What is your mantra to keep moving?

Wordless Wednesday

I’ve been ridiculously stressed out as of late. Things are hectic on campus and the fact that I took last weekend off is not helping one bit. So in honor of calming down and enjoying the little things, I present to you this Wordless Wednesday. (Also a somewhat-Ohio inspired theme)

Spending time to cuddle with pups this weekend was a great de-stresser (although they are not my own)

If you are ever in Ohio, try Jeni's ice cream, it is some of the best in the world!

Sometimes you have to stop questioning things and just embrace the awkward

This made me smile and is motivating me to dress it up a bit today

Now this is something I need to remember as I continue through my week...


Hope you are all having a lovely week. Happy hump day?

Tell me how you’ve been feeling this week.

Dearest exercise

Please do me a huge favor and find your way back into my life. Seriously, I miss you and want you back. I’ll do anything. Really! Don’t make me grovel…

Honestly, although I love working out, I just haven’t in the past three weeks. What does this correspond with? Well that would be the starting of the school year. Since beginning classes I’ve given up control of most other aspects in my life and given myself over to the program. It is rigorous. My sleep pattern has suffered, I’ve had minimal time to meet new people, and, worst of all, my running is going on the back burner.

This weekend, when I was given the opportunity to have a few hours off, I chose to go to a party in San Francisco. This in itself is not the issue, the issue is my decision to stay out late and drink too much so that I could not pull myself out of bed to go for a long run in the morning. Instead I got restless sleep for a few more hours and spent the entire day working in my office. I did manage a short run this morning, but I know that I need to pick it up a notch to prepare for my marathon in December.

The issue I’m finding is that I feel inappropriate leaving the office early when so many of my fellow grad students are staying in the building to get work accomplished. In fact, I can honestly say I felt guilty when I left the office to go play frisbee this week. If I could manage to get out of bed by six every morning then maybe I’d be able to have the time, but this would also require me to leave the office before ten each night. Sigh, what did I sign myself up for?

How do you make the time to workout? What sacrifices have you made to exercise more frequently?

This is what I spend my time doing these days... (Did you know art is hard?!)

Note: More positive posts to come later. Maybe. If I can find the time to write posts.

Ringing in the New Year

No not the typical American New Year, but the Jewish New Year. For those of you who are not familiar, last week was Rosh Hashanah and today is currently Yom Kippur. In the last week we were told to beg forgiveness from those we have wronged over the past year and today we are purging ourselves in a fast.  As the sun sets this evening I’ll have a clean slate and (hopefully) be inscribed in the book of life for the next year. Though before that happens I’d like to publicly apologize. In the words of Glinda (Wicked): I ask forgiveness, for the things I’ve done you blame me for.

On another note, did you know fasting is difficult? I had several dreams last night about accidentally eating today. Apparently food is constantly on my mind. In addition I’m not drinking today which makes life incredibly difficult. I had wanted to get many things accomplished today, but I’m afraid of becoming dehydrated. Instead I slept incredibly late and have been doing work for the past few hours. Not how I’d typically spend my Saturday or Yom Kippur, but it is necessary with all the work I have on my plate these days. Later I’ll return to services and (in seven hours) I’ll return to food.

This has been another long week. I had a large project due on Wednesday which came with a presentation. I forgot what it was like to present in front of my peers… For some reason I can happily talk in front of them in an informal setting, but when it comes to a darkened room I clam up. Not my best moment. Fortunately I was able to relax when it was over (for the night).

So I went out to a local running club to see if they had anything to offer me. Turns out their showing on Wednesday was minuscule (only 15 people). I spent my run with the “sweeper” who was still going considerably faster than I would have expected. I shouldn’t complain though, he managed to get my rear in gear and I completed 5.5 miles much faster than I expected. He was quite the interesting fella, apparently his father had lent Steve Jobs the money that was used to found Apple. Oh the people you’ll meet in Silicon Valley. I’m not sure if I’ll return to the group, but I’m trying to keep an open mind about the experience.

Now I’ve been assigned another large project and plenty of smaller tasks. It is stressful! I’m trying to keep my head up and remind myself that this is the life I wanted for myself. Although it is a lot of work, we’ve had plenty of fun interspersed throughout. Hopefully tomorrow isn’t swallowed whole by my class obligations and I can go for a long run in the morning (one can dream).

How do you ask for forgiveness? What new and exciting activities have you done this past week?

Orientating Myself

Graduate student orientation officially began this past Sunday. Hurrah? I’ve found that the events are often overwhelming since there are more than 1,000 new students and the rooms for each event have a much smaller capacity. Although I’ll admit that I have skipped many of the (less than necessary) sessions and attended more of the socialization events. I forgot how nerve wracking it is to meet people, but I’m glad to say that I’ve managed to bypass the alcohol and (slightly) overcome my group shyness.

Of course every event comes equipped with free food. I’m trying to stick with my action mantra and remind myself that just because it is free does not mean I need to consume it. (No Free Food!) But it is tough. I must admit that I did cave at one event, but I’m doing my best not to continue the trend. My program orientation provides us with lunch and dinner most days, so I have no choice but to consume their offerings. Planning for the rest of the week, my goal is to select the healthier options and keep my portions down.

This morning my program began with a bang. I had a difficult time determining what to wear and boy was I off the mark. My JCrew chinos and Banana Republic top made me the most overdressed individual in the room. And after a quick round of introductions they sent us off for a scavenger hunt. It was a fantastic time, I even got behind the seat of a cop car, but boy is it hot out! My outfit was a poor choice as I shvitzed through my top. (I’m hoping not everyone noticed…) Now that I know how the other folks are dressing I think I can be more comfortable in jeans and a nice top, no use in overdoing it on a daily basis.

The rest of the week will be intense. They have us scheduled to be in our offices everyday, including the weekends. Unfortunately this means I’ll have to miss out on the Fitbloggin’ Local event that I had been looking forward to, but I hope it helps me become closer with my fellow Loftees (the Loft is my home for the next two years). It seems this year will be a rigorous and rewarding experience, let’s just see if I’m ready for this ride!

How has your week been? What new and exciting things have kept you busy?