The whiskey in the bathroom

Another Sunday morning opening at CTB. I kind of think of it as church. We found a bottle of whiskey in the bathroom. #blessed

Introducing caffeine hasn’t had any noticeable effect. I feel the same, and I only drink it with breakfast. So I take that as a good sign. Last night I could not sleep for anything, so I listened to the Ultrarunner Podcast with Courtney Dauwalter. What a badass! I think what I like most about her is that she gives no fucks. She wears what she wants, she runs what she wants. It’s just so nice to see a really great athlete like her.

She doesn’t have a coach, and determines what she does each day based on how she’s feeling. It could be a 20 miler, it could be a walk around the block. I really appreciate that.

Speaking of coaching, mine is the best. I think it helps that he’s also my best friend. We can talk about anything.

My sister sent me a few photos from the wedding. On each of the tables, there were those disposable cameras for everyone to take pictures with. We got them developed,

Early Sunday shift means I’m usually tired by 3PM. I’ll see if I get up to Agava today for some picture and video shooting. I can also just edit what I have here. The roads are kind of icy.

I tested out the Saucony KOA today and I like them. The shoes are really cushioned and roomy, since I got the men’s version. I most likely won’t use them for my next race, but maybe MOTG in June.

Breakfast today: cheddar chive biscuit egg sandwich

Running: 30 minutes easy

Oh Running, Yup.

I’ve thought a lot about writing about running. It’s such a fickle topic for me, because although it is my favorite thing to do, I struggle to put into words something interesting.

I still run everyday, I’m training for a race, it’s bringing me joy, but really, it’s not anything I have much to say about. I do it everyday, I maintain a practice and it fills me up, and then I move on with my day.

Running gives me a baseline of happiness. One that I bring with me to my workday. Running makes me a better version of myself.

Yesterday I was in the middle of a 10 mile tempo run and felt a twinge in my hamstring. This caused me to reassess the pace of the workout, and bring it home at an easier pace than I was capable of. My hamstring was very sore all day, and I took today off.

I was very upset all day yesterday, almost irrationally upset, based on how my coach saw the workout. To him, I completed it and my hamstring isn’t ready to handle my level of fitness. To me, I was dying.

I let myself worry about it all day, cried a few times, and reassessed my situation. I’m most likely ok. I will continue to monitor it and not do anything to jeopardize the healing. I pray it is nothing.

If it is something, that’s ok too. I will try something else. I’ll heal and make it work. I’m always learning about my amazing body and how it works. I have not failed again, I’ve learned.

I’ve still got my jobs that fill me up, my family and friends who love me and a full life. I can cross-train. I still love movement, and having a bum hamstring does not prevent me from doing that.

Running continues to be a process. And that’s part of what I love.

Social Media Managing

About a month ago, I was hired as the social media manager for a local Ithaca restaurant. This is not the one I work full-time for, but it is owned by the same people.

Essentially the situation is I work remote mostly during the week when I have time, and try to get up to the restaurant itself once or twice a week for pictures and to work in the office.

What I do is mostly on Instagram, Facebook and now Twitter, so it’s a lot of social media…so much so I neglect my own ha!

When I look at my week, I budget my time around two things: my full time job and running. I schedule in my shifts at CTB, then plug in my runs (which happen every morning), then take the rest of the hours in the week and see where I can do social media.

My day starts with running, then depending on my CTB schedule, I’ll do social media for Agava, then close at CTB or I work the day shift, and do social media for Agava afterwards. If my shift ends at 2PM, meaning I had an opening shift, I try to go up to Agava to work there and take pictures. I can do most of the work remotely, but being around the staff and being able to ask my bosses questions helps my work.

I can also use their resources and get quick answers to my questions.

When I work remotely, I schedule a daily Facebook post, IG post and Twitter. Usually the FB and Twitter are done in advance, so the only live thing I do is IG and engagement across those platforms.

There are of course the nightly specials and other things I Tweet out to keep people up to date and current, but I try to have at least a post across the platforms scheduled each day. This way I can spend more time editing or working on long term projects.

On my weekly day off from CTB, I work with my coach so it’s usually a long run day. Then I have time to relax and eat a good breakfast before I head to Agava to get work done. On my Saturday of from CTB I work in the morning at the gym, then have a meeting with my boss at Agava in the afternoon. It is then he tells me what’s been going well, what I can do better and what to focus on in the week. Since I’m up there, I also try to get footage.

Another thing I do is their newsletter. The newsletter is called East Enders and it gives the members weekly deals and discounts. It’s a really great deal, as it’s free to sign up and the deals are quite good. The newsletter also has our events, live music and other tidbits I find interesting. I like doing that very much!

So that’s basically it. Any questions?

Oh and to see my art in action, follow us! @agava_restaurant

Showing Up

I’ve run away a lot in my life. I avoid social situations where I don’t have control. I like my routines, my boxes and things a certain way. My brain has a way it wants things done. When things are not that way, I have an internal battle where I convince myself not to run away.

On the surface, I seem very social, easy-going and up for most things. On a deeper level, it takes a lot of work to get me there. I’m not saying I would rather be a shy mouse in the corner, but I don’t branch out very often. I don’t do many social situations after 6PM. I make sure I give myself enough time for 8 hours of sleep.

I don’t go to bars, I don’t drink much. I like to have dinner at home. I like to get up early and go to bed early. I like to take my time.

Then, I started to build relationships and have friends. I have a huge family unit I love being a part of. Though these people drive me crazy sometimes and push me out of my Zen zone, I would not trade them for that comfort.

The second half of 2017 looked a lot different than the first half. The first half I needed to get away from Ithaca, from friends and from what I was used to. Essentially, I ran away from that comfort, but I also ran away from the responsibility that comes with forming relationships. I had a reason not to show up. I lived further away after all. Sorry, no can do. Bridal shower? Sorry, gotta work. Christmas? Hmm, I actually can’t make that. No I wasn’t mad at anyone, but I was in my comfort zone, alone, doing what I knew. I was content living that way.

In the second half of 2017, things started to change. I met Michael, Eric, Sheila and Lisa from TrailsRoc and they made me a part of their family. I started to work with my friend and running coach Mike, which forced me to be accountable with training and what I was doing. I started to crave people who liked me for me. Even crazier, I missed my family because they became people who I could talk to, lean on and laugh with. Rather than loving them because they are blood, I loved them because I love them. They make me feel whole.

Making these relationships, running a few crazy races and job circumstances led me back to Ithaca, to living with people and running with guidance. I was overjoyed to move back, but I had changed and so did my need for control.

Having relationships means showing up. It means being where you say you’ll be. It means being honest. I no longer felt “bad” for saying “yes I’ll be there but I have a run first.” In the past, I felt like I was doing something wrong or I didn’t care enough. Granted, if it was important, I skip said run, but building a new relationship with my family meant that they also understood who I was. They understand I run and doing that before I help my mom at her store or work with my dad doesn’t mean I don’t love them, it means that my priorities make running first (early before they are awake or opening up shop) and then I am more productive, happier and we get more done.

Showing up means being present, not worrying about other things that “need” to get done. Showing up means connecting when we can, but also not expecting an answer super fast because we all have things we want to do. Showing up for me meant loosening my vegan dietary preferences. Showing up meant loosening my need for control. Showing up reminded me that I don’t need to be alone and that if I do make plans one day instead of have a day to myself, the world doesn’t end, I still get my stuff done and I usually feel even more invigorated afterwards.

Showing up means not living a life online. Showing up means just being there.

Showing up is hard. It’s uncomfortable. It’s worth it.

2017 taught me how to show up. No turning back now 🙂

My Body Since JFK

I only ran the 50 miler a few days ago. My system took a beating and it’s been trying to repair itself since. This is not a bad thing, it means I did what I set out to do.

In full transparency, I want to share my experiences in the week post ultramarathon so I remember for my next one and also for those who might benefit from knowing that it’s not all #restdaybrags and eating all the food. There are some things that suck, and it’s not just the not running part.

Insomnia

Since Saturday I have not slept well. I expected this to happen, but it doesn’t make it very enjoyable. I am tired during the day, so when I go to bed I expect to fall asleep relatively quickly. However, this does not happen and I am up all night. The reason this happens is because my system has been overtaxed and my adrenals overworked. Again, this is expected after a 50 miler and soon I will get back to normal. Right now it’s just frustrating because sleep is the best recovery tool and not sleeping draws out the soreness.

Ravenous, then sick

I go from normal to starving very quickly, then I eat and feel sick. I do not feel sick because I ate too much, the food simply feels weird. This has caused me to be extra cautious and it does take the joy out of eating. This leads me to my next point,

Food is boring

You know when you are really hungry and so you expect that whatever you eat next, no matter what it is, will taste great? Well, for me, I expect that, and then the food is just underwhelming. The last food I remember that completely satisfied me were the biscuits I ate the morning after the race. Since then, food has just been energy, and that’s ok I suppose, but I’d personally like to enjoy food a bit more, especially around the holidays.

Seizing Muscles

Since the race I’ve had to work. I have a job that is physical, but nothing I cannot handle. At certain points in the past few days, my muscles will just seize up. This happens in both my arms and legs. They just make a weird movement and it hurts a bit. Again, this is part of the process and I am not injured, it’s just strange.

Restless Legs

This goes with the no sleep, but because I haven’t really had much downtime since I got home, I haven’t really let my legs completely relax. They are still a bit stimulated and think I might go on a run sometime. They just need to get used to the lack of movement, but until they do they want to move. So when I am sitting or laying for an extended period of time, they protest.

All these things will work themselves out. There is nothing concerning to me here because I am in my off season and have no plans to train. If this were happening during the season, it would be signs of OTS and something to address.

Besides the physical, mentally I am tired and ready for the break. I don’t wake up glad not to run, but I also am content not running as well. I simply know my body and mind want to do something else, actually, they want to do nothing, right now. I am not injured, I am in a good place with how I feel about running. I will wait until I am inspired for a race or it lights me up. I will know when this is happening and it will not be anytime soon.

Next up is enjoying Thanksgiving, my cousin’s baby shower and a slow holiday season.

I am content, running will be there.

Happy Thanksgiving!