02 10 / 2011

I Quit My Job

(But no, it’s not to blog full time. Who would read that?)

When I started at my job two years ago I had lived in Boston for six months without regular work. I temped occasionally but the money wasn’t that good or reliable and I was dwindling the savings I had used to move in the first place. So I took the first job I was offered.

I learned a lot of things in this job. I worked with some great people. But the job (support at a human services agency) wasn’t for me in the long run.

So I’m going for-profit and I’m really excited. My first day is in two weeks.

Pros: 

  • No more bus to work! (Unless it’s raining or cold or I feel lazy, in which case I’d take the bus to the T.)
  • The dress code is pretty similar to my old job, so I don’t need to upgrade my wardrobe.

Cons:

  • I will no longer be working 8-3:30. This is a real job with real hours, i.e. 8:30 to 5:30 with a 15 minute break and 45 minute lunch. I anticipate lots of early morning runs. I haven’t worked 8 hour days every day since I left Pennsylvania back in March 2009.

But I think the job change is going to be a good thing. I’m headed to Bloomingdales this morning for a champagne brunch and fashion show and I do believe we get a 20% discount. Perhaps I’ll find a cute and not-too-expensive new work outfit.

24 9 / 2011

Saturday Night

Tonight I went out with one of my new Junior League friends. We hit up the Border Cafe and Grafton Street Pub in Harvard Square for dinner and drinks. I’m usually a member of the Clean Plate Club but I couldn’t finish my empanadas at Border Cafe and once we got dessert at Grafton Street I couldn’t even finish my beer. 

Tomorrow morning I plan to wake up and conquer my third long run of marathon training. I can’t believe that week 3 is almost over! I didn’t quite make it to seven miles last week so that’s my goal for the day. I’ve been dreading the long run because all of a sudden the weather turned warm and humid. I thought summer had ended! I’m not ready to run in humidity again!

While looking at my schedule for the first weekend of October I realized that I forgot to leave room to do my 9-mile run when I was scheduling things. Since I volunteered to assist at a 5k (to keep myself from running it) I think I might run there, volunteer, and then run back home to kill two birds with one stone. I’m really looking forward to helping out. I also have 6 hours of assisting at an event for my Junior League placement scheduled, a Junior League event on Sunday morning, and a yoga date. In two days! I’m not usually quite as overbooked. 

For now I’m just trying to hydrate as much as possible before I go to bed (very, very soon). It looks like it might rain when I head out in the morning so I’ve put a hat and a plastic baggie for my iPod with the rest of my running clothes. Here’s to a good run!

14 9 / 2011

The Challenge for Today

Not long ago I was left alone in my apartment for a week. I was excited because there are things I never do because I share a living space with someone else - like fold my laundry in the living room. And leave it there. All week. (To be honest, I fold my laundry in the living room as I watch TV all the time, but I usually put it away when the show is over.)

What I didn’t expect was this habit of not putting things away to stress me out. I used to never put things away (just ask my mother!). Now seeing the clutter is distracting and stressful.

My room is currently a cluttered mess, partly because I still haven’t developed the habit of putting things away when I’m done with them (the half of my bed I don’t use is currently host to sweaters, sweatshirts, and magazines that need to be put away) and partly because I’ve been waking up early to run or work out, rushing to get to work on time (I need to start leaving earlier as the bus schedule changed after Labor Day and the bus I took in the spring has been getting me to work 15 minutes late). I’ve been spending evenings out of the house, and when I get home I’ve been eating dinner and heading to bed (or reading Bloodlines, Richelle Mead’s latest. I love a good YA vampire story, and Richelle delivers. One hundred times better than Twilight!).

Today’s Challenge:

Clearly this is something I need to address. I can barely navigate my bedroom because last Monday I set up a drying rack and it still has clothes on it from last Monday. I should take this as a challenge: if my planned dinner involves lentils and buckwheat grouts because they’re quick to make and fairly low-maintenance (and, you know, I have them in the pantry), maybe I should PUT THE CLOTHES AWAY while my food is cooking. It’d really take 5 minutes. I make excuses because I’ll probably be home for 1.5 hours before heading to a happy hour today, but it’s still plenty of time to make dinner (and tomorrow’s lunch), put away my CSA veggies, and put my clothing away.

This Week’s Challenge:

On Monday I challenged myself to buy nothing until Friday after work, and I’ve been doing really well even though I’m desperate to run to the grocery store to buy something for my sweet tooth. The only exception so far has been Tuesday’s Living Social deal for Whole Foods, because I’m just rolling it into my grocery budget anyway.

In other news: 

I walked past Little Miss Runshine my way home yesterday and finally stopped and introduced myself. I’ve seen her in passing a few times (while running, walking past her on the street, I think I almost collided with her once when I was running at 5:30 a.m…). It’s funny because maybe 5 minutes before I ran into Jessica, I saw one of my former housemates from college in the T station and neglected to say hi (she was wearing headphones and far enough ahead of me that I didn’t bother to try for her attention). My college has a huge group of young alums in the area, and I bet most of us live within 2 miles of each other. A former college classmate just moved in two houses away from me! I ran into her as she was departing on a run last week.

In Summary:

Life is busy, but I really have no excuses to not put my things away if it’s really stressing me so much that I spent this many words writing about it.

The End.

12 9 / 2011

The Little Things

Sometimes the littlest things make me incredibly happy.

1) I thought my social life was going to be busy this summer. Well, the fall seems to be where it’s at. I joined Junior League and between that and events with my alumnae club my week has been packed.

2) I finished the first week of marathon training! Yes, it was a 15 mile week, but I finished it. It occurred to me as I was walking home this evening that I ran all 15 miles of it - no walk breaks! I don’t think this will happen with every run of marathon training, but between that and my amazing 6 mile run on Saturday the first week was a huge confidence booster.

3) As I was heading home from Junior League this evening I also realized that since my meeting ended ahead of schedule, I would now have time to go to the library and pick up the items being held for me! One of those items is Bloodlines, the new companion to the Vampire Academy novels by Richelle Mead. I’ve already started it, and I can tell that I won’t want to put it down. I’ve been looking for a book that will really hold my interest, and I can tell that this one will definitely fit that need.

4) Picking up my library books today means that I don’t need to rush home tomorrow to pick them up! I actually have a meeting in the evening and I’ll be able to camp out downtown between work and the meeting, and won’t have to detour out of the way first. This revelation made me incredibly happy.

I have a super early wake up call for tomorrow (got to get my run in!) so I really need to start thinking about bed - and doing my normal prep for the next day (make lunch, have a plan for breakfast, pick out tomorrow’s outfit, etc.) and hopefully I’ll have time to read a little more before I go to sleep. I’m very excited for tomorrow’s commute. 

06 9 / 2011

Marathon training

Many things have happened recently. One of them is that I finally started marathon training yesterday! I decided to run the 2012 Walt Disney World Marathon last summer, registered for it in April, and decided to use Hal Higdon’s Novice Training Plan months ago. I’ve just been waiting for September 5, and it finally came! (It was also the day I celebrated my 25th birthday. And I had the day off from work. All around, an amazing day.)

Since I doubted that I would be able to run on Tuesday I woke up early on Monday to get in 3 miles while I was still visiting my sister at Notre Dame. It was about 50 degrees outside, pitch black at 6:15 (so weird, because I live in the Eastern end of the time zone and am used to light at that time) and perfect. My sister had directed me to two lakes on campus, but I could only find one of them (it was dark and early in the morning!) so I just ran around it twice.

I hope to post more about marathon training as it happens. Not every single workout (because that’s what Daily Mile is for) but to share how it goes. I’m super excited for the marathon! We booked the hotel and I may have already started to go overboard in making dining reservations.

26 8 / 2011

Changes

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it yet, but I have some life changes on the way.

For one, my roommate of 2.5 years (and one of my best friends from college) is moving out and moving on, and I’ve decided not to move and have someone new moving in with me.

So that will be different. The Old Roommate and I have changed a lot in our 7 years of friendship, but we are still friends, and we plan to see lots of each other after she moves out next week.

In is coming a new roommate, who is pretty awesome. We went to Taipei and Tokyo in Davis Square for dinner tonight (I got two vegetable sushi rolls - pretty delicious) and then to Joshua Tree for some beer. I tried the UFO Pumpkin beer and I really liked it. I also got the old standby Wachusett Blueberry since it was on draft, and that was pretty darn tasty, too. I love it when they put real, live blueberries in the drink.

Since I’m 9 days from the start of marathon training and next week is going to be crazy I am going for a 5-mile run tomorrow morning. Provided I drink enough water before I fall asleep.

That’s just a taste of what’s going around here. I am kind of excited to have the opportunity to rearrange some of the furniture when new roommate moves.

15 8 / 2011

I spent the entire month of July complaining about the weather. It was too hot, too humid, and then mother nature went ahead and gave us a 103-degree day (this is the day I spent an extra two hours at work chatting with coworkers because none of us was looking forward to leaving the air conditioning).

But so far August has been nearly perfect. I’ve only turned on my bedroom air conditioning unit twice, the temps haven’t really exceeded the mid 80s, and I’ve been quite happy.

Today’s high is 72, and while it’s also raining I’m celebrating the little things. I love cooler temperatures and I can’t wait for fall, but I’m trying to enjoy the rest of summer while I still can.

14 8 / 2011

Cloudy Sunday

I woke up this morning with an 8-mile run on the agenda. In fact, the original plan was to leave around 7 and run to the Boston Common for the Run to Down Dog hosted by Lululemon. (I was going to skip the 2-mile fun run and just participate in the yoga portion.) After looking at the weather, however, it appeared that there was a 100% chance it was currently raining (I might not have actually looked outside). I knew this meant the yoga class would be indoors, so I decided to take my time before the run. Instead I did exciting things like watch The Biggest Loser season 6 and do a load of laundry.

A little after 8:30 I finally headed out on my run. Instead of running to Boston I decided to run down the Minuteman bike path toward Arlington. I had never gone past Arlington Center on this path - I had attempted a trip down it back when I was half marathon training in February but it was dark by the time I got there and I lost the path (which was also covered in snow). Since it was just a cloudy morning in August, I had no problem running about 1 mile past Arlington Center before turning around and heading home.

This was one of my best long runs this summer. I haven’t run this far since May, and I managed to only take a minute longer than my 7-mile run last week. This did wonders for my confidence - it was cloudy and in low the 70s, which I think helped compared to the sunnier skies of last week. I also started out much later. I keep finding myself having 14:00+ minute paces in the mornings and much quicker paces later in the day. Today’s pace was 12:27, which is much closer to where I want my long run pace to be. 

It didn’t rain at all on my run (though it’s definitely in the forecast for today and the beginning of the week!) so when I hit 8 miles right in front of Dunkin Donuts I stopped for an iced coffee and a refill of my water bottle (I had tried to refill it at a water fountain on my route but it was so darn sweaty that I couldn’t remove the lid). I double fisted the coffee and water bottle for the rest of my trip home.

I am really thrilled to finally have a summertime long run that really left me feeling like my marathon goals can be accomplished. I finally reached a 20 mile week this summer, and I hope to get one or two more before marathon training officially begins. 

12 8 / 2011

3 Weeks.

Today I realized that in just over three weeks, I begin marathon training.

I alternate between thinking that marathon training will be awesome, and that I’m just crazy.

But I’m more than half way to a 20-mile week, which is the first in months and very exciting. I hope to log two more in the coming weeks pre-marathon.

(PS - Marathon training officially begins September 5, which happens to be my 25th birthday. I am very, very excited.)

08 8 / 2011

Not too long ago I woul have though this scenario to be impossible.

On Saturday I had very fun evening plans, but I knew it was going to be a late night. I also knew that as an early riser there was no way I’d be able to stay up that late without a nap. And I wanted to run 7 miles in the morning, before it got too warm.

I set the alarm for 5 am (wake up time) and another for 6:30 am (the latest I wanted to leave for my run). I woke up, was out the door by 6:35 and proceeded to spend the next hour and a half knocking out those seven miles. Even though my pace was very slow I felt good for most of the run.

After a morning yoga class, I was home by noon, ready to eat lunch, shower, and take a nap, which felt really good, and I was able to party all night long.

We went to see The Donkey Show in Harvard Square, and it was a lot of fun. Picture A Midsummer’s Night Dream set in a 70s disco: theater and dancing rolled into one.