Today I’m going to write about running. But before then, some updates:
I realized this past Saturday while I was journaling how bad I am at keeping up with things. I suppose this isn’t much of a realization considering I would go weeks or months without blogging while I was abroad, but it’s a bit unsettling to think back about how much time has passed without much thought.
Working this summer has put me on autopilot. I wake up at 7:30, drag myself out of bed, make breakfast oats for the road and run (sometimes literally run) out of the door to make it to the office in time to get coffee ready for everyone. The next nine hours fly by as I work on projects, and next thing I know it’s time to go home, get my running shoes on for my daily run and make a late dinner afterwards.
It’s like that movie Groundhog Day where he keeps living the same day over and over. Each day may be different for me but for the most part it’s become pretty monotonous. Some days are a little spicier because of instead of a run, I go to yoga after work instead (how *exciting* is that).
It’s the start of my 9th week in Chicago and I’m incredulous at how that even happened. Wasn’t it yesterday I was still drinking tea with 5 sugars at Clement & Pekoe? Or moving through vinyasa at Stray Dog? Or hugging my parents hello at the airport before the Fourth?
If I have to be honest, I was wishing the summer away when it started. I hated the transition back into reality and how I had hardly a minute to breathe between flying home from Dublin, catching up on sleep and moving into my apartment in the city. I hadn’t seen my school friends in nearly five months (or a year for some) and I was more than ready to get back to South Bend. Hell, I had never even been away from Granger for more than five weeks since I was 8 years old, and here I was, away for eight months. It’s something I’ve been coming to terms with lately with this being my final year at Notre Dame. When my family moved, I was comforted by the fact that I at least would be back in northern Indiana for school, but graduating will mean finally leaving my hometown. If you had asked me in high school if I would be sad to be leaving Indiana and driving by cornfields on the way to school every day, I would have laughed till I cried. But alas, the end of an era is approaching, and after 14 years, I’ll be saying good-bye.
Have I ever said on here that I hate change? I’m kidding. I hate change, but I can’t say I haven’t fallen a little bit in love with this city. I wrote at the beginning of the summer that I hated it, and there are still some things I hate. I do hate living in the loop, but I’m grateful it makes getting to work an easy 15 minute walk (or run, depending on the morning). I think I may actually have fallen in love with Lincoln Park, though. I like to escape out there on the weekend days to look at fresh flowers and have a cup of coffee at a window seat. I’ve always loved watching the world go by like that, and god knows I
need love caffeine. My long runs take me up into that area as well, and it’s close to the Lakefront Trail which would make training for future races easier. It’s the sweetest residential neighborhood with a good handful of brunch places, so could I ask for more? The prospect of living outside the loop in a lovely walk-up in a neighborhood where I can find fresh flowers every day makes my heart happy, and is now a part of my motivation to return to the city. Well, that and it’ll be quite difficult to say bye to everyone at work and think I’ll never see them again. It’s turned out to be a sweet summer, and I’ve been blessed with some great friends to goof around with. Oh, and I chopped all my hair off, even though mum wasn’t as thrilled with that one.
If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know that running and I have a mixed history. When I picked it up freshman year, it was only because 1. I didn’t want to gain the freshman 15 and 2. I had spontaneously signed up for a half marathon. When I abused it the summer after sophomore year, I used it as a way to quickly cut weight. When I did it sporadically last spring, it was because I didn’t want to die during my third half. For all the parts in between, it was one of the things that saved my life. Training for races gave me structure and goals every day, and for the days when getting out of bed was going to be the greatest accomplishment I felt like I had achieved a giant feat if I added a run.
I have always entertained the idea of running a full marathon. I’ve wanted to do one in college because I wasn’t sure if I would have the energy or motivation to train for one while I was working full-time. Well, I’ve been working full-time and I just finished my second week of marathon training. So people, it can be done!!
I’m not sure what cracked up 12-week marathon training plan I found but it had me starting the first week at 8 miles, meaning this upcoming Sunday long run will be a half marathon. Pro tip: if you want to run a marathon and aren’t quite there in running shape, I would start much earlier than 12 weeks, preferably around 16.
Two weeks in, and 53 miles down – I may not be great at sticking with things (like budgets, yikes), but I know I don’t have much choice in sticking to this running plan. If I miss one day, I know the next day’s run will be hell. Running in Midwest humidity is one of my least favorite things, and yesterday my sweat actually burned my eyeballs. I didn’t even know that was possible. I cried the last two miles from said burning eyeballs and got a lot of weird looks. I’m praying to the body parts god that my old lady knees carry me to the finish.
Time is a funny thing. Change is a funny thing. Me sweating buckets while trying not to die during my long run is a funny thing (to look at). Last summer may have made me hate running, but I’m beyond happy to have pulled my shoes out of retirement.
Realistically, next time y’all hear from me will be when I move into my apartment to start senior year, which is in only 4 WEEKS!!!! I cannot contain my excitement to be living off campus with my best friends. I’m serious – the amount of times Kelly and I have planned to order pizza you would think I was magically no longer lactose intolerant. Speaking of best friends, I finally get to hug Kimmy today for the first time in seven months!! While she’s been wandering around New Zealand I have been in Dublin and also joined corporate America (which would never guess given the lax dress code). *And* Bradley is coming this Saturday. That boy has never visited Chicago and I’m honestly shocked he wants to spend a whole day with me after traveling to 5 countries together already. What a great week it will be – full of runs, pizza, tacos, gin and tonics, yoga (finally!) and Jesus (of course Bradley will want to go to church together Sunday).
The light in me honors the light in you,