Wake me up when it’s all over, when I’m wiser and I’m older

I’m trying to become a breakfast person.

It’s hard. I just ate some fruit + oatmeal and I feel gross. Nauseous. Really full. Years of skipping breakfast until like 10am or 11am is doing a number on this early AM feast. (I didn’t even eat that much, like a cup of oatmeal and a handful of fruit. But I ate it at 7:30am.)

But they say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. They say eating breakfast will curb my hunger later. They sat eating breakfast will give me more energy. Will make me healthier.

So I’m trying. It’s hard to find the time. For years, my morning priorities have been sleep > fitness > food. I’m trying to shift that to: sleep + fitness + food.

Change is hard.

But so is becoming a better runner, and a better person. And if eating breakfast will help that, then so be it.

Now when did you last let your heart decide?

A year ago this week, I did the Dopey challenge in Disney World with my sister and my friend Julie.

4 races over 4 days. 48.6 miles in total.

It was to be my second Disney race experience, having done the Princess half in 2016, to celebrate Jill’s 30th birthday.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. But I walked away with one of the most important lessons I could have received.

Running should be fun.

Imagine that?

Yes, you should work hard and go after big dreams. Disney is all about dreams, after all. But you need to find enjoyment in the experience, in the moment. Why else do something so difficult and time consuming? You need to love it.

I hope to carry this lesson through with me into the next phase of my running career: the phase where I go all in on Boston.

Every year’s a souvenir that slowly fades away

For the past couple years, I’ve had a “word of the year.” a guiding phrase to remind myself of my intentions, what I need to work on.

2016 was FOCUS. 2017 was LOVE. I can’t remember what 2015 was.

I really struggled to come up with a word that worked for 2018.

I wanted it to be positive. I wants it to guide my marathon training, but also be relevant to the rest of my life.

I recently read How Bad Do You Want It and Boston Bound. A common theme in both these books was that the best athletes are not outcome focused. They are process-focused. Present. Engaged in the activity they are doing at the moment.

And so, reluctantly, I think my guiding work for 2018 will be PRESENT. I recently started meditating (which I have mixed feelings about). I also struggle with runaway thoughts, stress, worry. Being present will remind me to chill out in everyday situations. It will also remind me to think about, and appreciate, the workout/moment/situation I am in.

I also like the second level of meaning: how I present myself to the world. Am I positive? Engaged? Grateful? Am I treating myself with respect? Others with respect?

I’m not sold, but I think it works. Sometimes these things are epiphanies. Sometimes you just pick something and make it work. And that’s life.

You’ve heard about me, I’ve got some big enemies

There are two things I need to work on during this period of injury.


And food.

I’m a shitty sleeper. It takes hours for me to fall asleep. I wake up at any noise whatsoever. I set my alarm ambitiously early, feel like garbage when it goes off and usually – especially in the dead of winter – turn it off, roll over, and go back to sleep. I need to figure out what it takes for me to fall asleep sooner, sleep deeper, and get up when that alarm goes off in the AM so I can crush my goals. It was easier when I had an AM fitness class with a teacher who knew me and called me out when I skipped. Right now, my schedule is pretty light so I’m jut pushing my workouts to the evening. At least they are getting done. But soon my evenings will be full and this won’t be possible.

I’m not a terrible eater, but I don’t prioritize it or plan it well. So I eat healthy, but not enough, then end up starving at 8pm with literally nothing in my fridge. I’ve gotten into the swing of lunch prep, but one busy weekend and that’s out the window. I need to work on 1) planning everything I eat for an entire week and 2) prioritizing meal prep even when I’m busy/tired/don’t want to do it.

These aren’t hard, fast GOALS, you know? Rather things I’ve noticed and will make an effort to improve, but won’t beat myself up over them if I have a setback or slip-up. There are so many big goals, and big changes, you can take on at once.

I’ll be picking up bottles with you on New Year’s Day

I’m still injured.

It still sucks.

I think I’ve moved into a better place, mindset-wise though. After seeing a physio I didn’t like and a chiro whose approach wasn’t working, I finally found a physio that seems to get what I want to accomplish: get better, get faster, keep running.

I hired a coach. This has been super helpful, because it gives me a schedule, a routine and a plan. Before, I was floundering and not knowing what was right, what was wrong, what was working, what wasn’t. She’s building me a rehab plan, and it feels so good to see those little “scheduled workouts” in my calendar. I thrive on homework, on following orders. It’s still early, but this seems like one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while.

The title is a Taylor Swift lyric. It’s about the work that goes behind the scenes: the crappy stuff you need to do in order to a build a life, make a night special. But it’s okay if you believe in it and have good people by your side. And that’s what this is. It’s work, but I need to enjoy every minute of it.

Here’s to 2018, getting better and chasing down big dreams.