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Insanity Doesn’t Run in My Family, It Practically Gallups

13 May
Just a quick update. I am alive. I am officially done with law school and, barring any unforeseen failures, I am about to become a JD. It’s all very exciting.

My parents came in to town on Wednesday night, the same day I finished exams. I’ve been pretty much going non-stop ever since. My grandma, aunt, uncle and 3 small children are getting in today and my sister and her husband come in tomorrow morning. My apartment is a mess, my car hasn’t been cleaned in months and my sanity is hanging on by a thread.

I was so excited when I went to bed on Wednesday night because I didn’t have to set an alarm. I fell asleep around 1 am … and woke up at 5:30. I could not for the life of me fall back to sleep. I laid in bed watching some super awesome early morning television (did you know that Boy Meets World is still on television?!?! Now you do. You’re welcome). After a few hours of laying in bed feeling annoyed that I couldn’t sleep, I decided to go for a run, since I knew my parents would be jetlagged and I’d have some time to kill. I figured I’d just do a quick 2 miles around my neighborhood. Bad plan. During my 2 shorter runs last week, I noticed a lot of stiffness in my right hamstring. On Saturday, I ran 4 measly miles on the treadmill. During my run I felt great, but about an hour later (as I met my friend at a dog park to chase puppies) my right hip was killing me. Like, limping ow it hurts don’t make me walk the two blocks back to my car, killing me). I went home (well, I went to the library. Then I went home …) iced, rolled, stretched and the pain was completely gone by Monday. I didn’t have a chance to run again until yesterday. My run itself was fine, but after the run, my hip was killing me again! It didn’t help that my dad decided he really wanted to see Venice Beach, so could we please walk from the Venice Pier to the Santa Monica Pier (6 miles round trip) and oh, we actually have to be somewhere this afternoon, so we have to walk really quickly on the way back and wait, you weren’t wearing the right shoes for that? Also, in case anyone was wondering, it’s kind of mortifying walking the Venice boardwalk with your parents.

I don’t know if my whole family is going to make it through this weekend alive. Oh well. Gidget’s Rule #5 – Roll with the punches.

PCRF Half Marathon (Race?) Recap Part 2 [or How I Totally Took the Prize for Worst Race Fail Ever. In. Life.]

5 May
I had grand plans for Saturday night. I was going to eat pasta, drink tons of water and be in bed by 8. And clearly by that I meant eat Taco Bell, drink tons of wine and be in bed by midnight. Whoops. That should have been sign numero uno that this was not going to be my race.

I woke up on Sunday at 4:45, feeling not quite hungover but not quite right. I had casually pretended to be a real person the night before, so all of my gear was “laid” out [aka thrown in a small pile at the food of my bed]. Excellent. I got dressed, grabbed my water bottle from the fridge and headed out. The race started at 7 but I wanted to get there a little early, since I hadn’t gotten my bib from Sarah yet. As I was driving down to Irvine, I had this weird nagging feeling that I had forgotten something (along with a growing hangover). Garmin? No, got that. Phone? Nope, right there. What was I missing?

I got to Irvine around 6:15 which was perfect. The race was right off the freeway, which was awesome, and there was free parking. Holla! [Something about living in Los Angeles makes a person covet free parking]. I grabbed my stuff (went back about 4 times because I kept forgetting my headband) and finally made it the start area around 6:30. The starting area of this race was great. There were no lines for the porta potties and everything was really relaxed. My first 1/2 was Rock & Roll Los Angeles in October which was huge. The starting area of PCRF was much more organized. I’m not sure if I was just more blase about this or if it was the atmosphere but I wasn’t nervous or anxious at all. I met Sarah, grabbed my bib and headed to the start. Sarah was starting all the way in the front (because she’s an amazing rockstar) and I headed towards the back of the pack. I lined up right behind the 2:45 group, not necessarily because that was my goal, but because it was a convenient way of keeping pace. I knew I hadn’t trained, but I figured I’d run what I could, walk if I had to and sort of muddle my way through.

After a fun little warm up from Lululemon and the national anthem we were off. As I crossed the starting line (about a minute after the start – so much different than LA!), I realized what I had forgotten. Breakfast. I had forget to eat breakfast. Oh. Crap. All I had was an FRS on my way down (thanks Sarah!). This was not good. I thought about eating a Gu right away, but I only had 2 and I didn’t know if there’d be any along the course. I knew immediately I was in trouble, but there was nothing to do about it now.

Miles 1-6 were awesome. I was running just in front of the pace group and I felt great. The pace was easy, it wasn’t too hot, it wasn’t too windy. Nothing hurt. I was jamming to my music (and by that I clearly mean singing out loud awkwardly). It was great. I had been taking water at every stop, because I knew I was dehydrated from the night before. Right around here I made mistake numero dos – I took some sort of sports drink instead of water. I didn’t actually mean to take it, I thought I was just taking water. When I realized what it was, I figured I’d take it – it was calories and I needed calories. BUT. I don’t train with sports drinks. I rarely drink them. In fact, I rarely drink anything that’s not water (or alcohol, obvs). The sports drink was so sweet. Like, hurt my teeth sweet. It was not sitting well with my stomach and I had a ton of saliva in my mouth (note: this is the least gross part of this post. If it’s too much, go ahead and close your window now. It’s ok, I’ll wait).

So anyway, the sports drink and I were not getting along. I kept telling myself to hold on until the next water stop, where I could grab some water and hopefully get the taste out of my mouth. At the next water stop, they were handing out water AND gels. Outstanding! I really can’t say no to free things and I was pumped that I wouldn’t have to use my own gels. This was mistake numero tres – trying something new in the middle of a race. I’ve only ever had vanilla and blackberry gus. They work for me, I don’t think they’re gross, and I’m a creature of habit. I’m one of those “buy the same shirt in 17 colors once you know you like it” kind of girls. This gel was neither gu, nor one of my preferred flavors. It was some sort of mocha something. I chugged as much water as I could to get the initial taste out of my mouth, then took half the gel. Bad plan. This gel was not delicious. It was not even tolerable. My stomach, which was a little annoyed at me to begin with, started an open rebellion. By the middle of mile 7, I watched the pace group pass me. Every step I ran made me feel a little more nauseous. Miles 7-9 [ish? it got a little hazy] went through some sort of nature trail with a lot of shrubbery. I started dry heaving and had to walk. Shockingly hard to run and throw up at the same time. I had nothing in my stomach besides water and gel, so I couldn’t even throw up properly. To say it was miserable would be an understatement.

It was right around this time that I first started to notice how dehydrated I was getting. My fingers had been swelling a little bit in the earlier miles, but by now they were so swollen I couldn’t make a fist. This was not good. I was actually starting to get a littler worried that the swelling and the throwing up were related. I stopped at the porta potty around mile 9 to try and get my act together. This was when I discovered that I had gotten my period. Seriously, body? Seriously? They don’t give out tampons in half marathons. Fun fact. It was at this point I officially decided this was just going to be a comedy of errors and let it go. I’d just finish the race as slow as I needed to, I’d chug as much water as I could and I’d hope for the best.

For a couple of miles, I had noticed that I was developing a blister on my right foot. I’ve gotten really bad blisters since I started running, no matter how many times I get fitted for new shoes or wear fancy running socks. It’s a thing. But this one was getting pretty bad. I started alternating walking and running. My hips hurt when I walked and my feet hurt when I ran. It was sort of a no win situation, but I was moving along, feeling as good as can be expected.

At mile 11, my mp3 player died. Apparently, when you plug things in to charge drunkenly, you don’t always do it right. Outstanding. But I could see the mile 12 marker. I’d be fine. I took a step and felt something squish. At first, I thought I had stepped on someone’s discarded gel. Then I looked down. No, no I had not. I had popped the blister that was developing on my right foot. My toes instantly felt better but my foot was now bloody. Apparently it was a blood blister. Lovely. I officially looked like the female version of 2004 Curt Schilling.

I crossed the finish line and just laughed. This was easily the most ridiculous run I have ever been on. I grabbed about 14 water bottles and an apple and headed back to my car.  My feet hurt and my hips hurt, but other than that I felt ok. I had started to develop a really bad headache, but I chalked it up to a combination of dehydration/allergies/residual hangover. When I was driving back up to LA, I started getting a little dizzy and I was having a hard time keeping my eyes open. It was actually a really scary experience because I didn’t know what was wrong with me. I pulled off and found a bagel store. I grabbed a bagel and another water and sat in my car eating it. I finally started to feel better, but I have officially learned my lesson. Gidget’s Rule #4: Don’t run a half marathon on an empty stomach.

When I got home, I showered and then headed right back out to the library. No post nap race for this girl. All in all, I was glad I ran it. I don’t know that it accomplished what I had hoped, though. I was pretty disappointed in myself for not pushing through everything. I knew I wasn’t physically in shape for this kind of distance, but I didn’t realize that I wasn’t mentally in shape either. That was absolutely a let down and something I’m going to need to ruminate on a little bit. One of these days I’m going to run a race that I have actually trained for without being injured. That will be awesome.

What’s your worst race experience?

PCRF Half Marathon (Race?) Recap Part 1 [or How I Decided This Was A Good Idea]

4 May
Let’s get this out of the way now: This sucked. Not because of the race, not because of the organizers, not because of anything other than I sucked and was woefully unprepared. But I did it, and that was pretty amazing.

Ok, on to the deets (do people say deets anymore? did I just date myself?).

Yes, I have been MIA. No, I didn’t secretly plan to run a half marathon and not tell you guys. This one just kind of … happened. I’d been feeling pretty low about myself. As I mentioned, D’s new girlfriend is in my profession and she’s unbelievably successful, in a way I’ll never be. I know I shouldn’t compare myself and blah blah blah but honestly (and we’re all about honesty here – Gidget’s Rule #3: Always tell the truth), it’s been a huge blow to my self esteem. I’ve been doing a lot of internal soul searching and I’ve been feeling pretty unaccomplished. Yes, I’m about to graduate law school, yes, I moved across the country all by myself but I couldn’t convince myself those things were awesome.

I had 2 exams and a paper within 24 hours of each other on Thursday/Friday. I was drinking my 3436th latte of the morning when I got this magical tweet from the beautiful Sarah:

Well, no, no I wasn’t. I had an exam on Monday and an exam on Tuesday. I was going to spend my entire weekend in the library, by myself, feeling alone and stupid and unaccomplished. But wait, why do you ask? Oh, you have an extra bib for a half marathon? On Saturday? No. No, I couldn’t possibly … Well … Ok, I’ll do it. 
Here’s what was going through my head:
“I’m not trained.”
“I couldn’t possibly.”
“Well, I was going to run 6-8 miles anyway.”
“How bada$$ would I be if I ran a half marathon in the middle of finals?”
“I bet she never ran a half marathon in the middle of finals …”
“…”
“…….”
“Ok, I’ll do it.”
And just like that, I was running a half marathon. In 2 days. With no training. On 4 hours of sleep. OUTSTANDING.
Stay tuned for Part 2 [or How I Totally Took the Prize for Worst Race Fail Ever. In. Life.]

>Confessions and New Directions (not the Glee kind)

3 Apr

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Ok, so I owe you, my loyal readers (yes, all 7 of you), an explanation. I’ve fallen off the blogging and running wagon, largely because the wagon fell on top of me.

So, let’s talk about what’s going on:
1) There is no more Moondoggie. Ok, there is still a Moondoggie, but he’s not my Moondoggie anymore. He’s someone else’s now. D and I were together for almost 6 years. About a month ago he started to question our relationship and about a week ago he told me he wanted to be with someone else. A specific someone else. A skinnier, more successful, faster runner someone else. Apparently I’m too sad and stressed out all the time. Yes, yes I am. I’m in law school. Obviously it’s all much more complicated than that. But it basically boils down to me being alone. I’m trying to have a positive attitude about it, but I’m 6 weeks away from entering the most stressful 2 months of my life (bar studying) and I’ve lost my best friend. I’m not doing super well. Which isn’t helped by …

2) I haven’t been running. Pretty much at all. I feel awful, so I do nothing but lay around and feel sorry for myself. Then I feel bad that I didn’t go running and it just gets worse. I get that it’s a vicious cycle. I totally get that. Also, my leg isn’t loving me. I hurts after 5 miles every damn time. Because of #1, I’ve felt absolutely no desire to go to the PT about it, so I just dig myself a little deeper.

3) I hate my job. HATE. IT. Viscerally. It makes me question whether or not I want to be a lawyer. Too late now. I really want to be a prosecutor. Unfortunately, because of stupid dumb budget issues, no one is hiring. I had an interview for a perfect prime dream job and didn’t get it because I didn’t have any connections. Great. Awesome. Fabulous. So, $200,000 in student loans, 3 years and 1 failed relationship later, I’m 3,000 miles away from home with no job, no boyfriend and not a ton of friends (see #4).

4) I have no friends. Well, that’s not true. I have a handful of friends. I moved to LA 3 years ago from NY to be with D. I knew it would be hard and I knew I’d have to make new friends. Unfortunately, all of those friends were D’s friends. And he won them in the breakup (they were his friends first). So I’m pretty much all alone out here. Not great.

5) There is no more Roommate. Well, at least not after May 15th. It’s a bit of a mess. So, come May 15th I’ll be homeless. And alone. Great.

I know this sounds very Debbie Downer and I know it’s the wrong attitude to have. I’m working on it. Right now, all I want to do is cry. But I can’t keep doing that forever. So here are some of the things I’m working on:
1) Time to find a new apartment. This is obviously priority #1 as I would prefer to not be homeless, if at all possible. Rumor has it it is hard to be homeless and study for the bar. A friend of mine may be leaving LA after graduation and said I can sublet her apartment. This would be good, except (a) I don’t want to lose my friend (see #4) and (b) it’s 4 blocks away from D. Don’t really need to see him and the new girlfriend walking around the neighborhood (or worse, her running faster than me).

2) Pass the bar. I was 100% committed to staying in LA 2 weeks ago. Right now I’m at about 80%. Unfortunately, I have to take the bar somewhere and wherever I take the bar is where I have to practice. Right now I’m registered for the CA bar and that’s what I’ll be taking in July. They offer the bar exam twice a year – July and February. So I’m giving myself until the February bar to figure things out. If, come the winter, I’m still miserable in LA and I still don’t have a job, then I’ll reconsider my options. For a whole slew of reasons, I don’t want to move back to NY. But we’ll see. That leads me to #3 …

3) Find a job. Any job. If I can’t do what I really want, I need to find something that will hold me over until something opens up. Even if I hate it. I can’t afford to not have a job once I graduate. Even if I hate it, it’ll be experience.

4) Make more friends/be more social/get over D. This is all kind of wrapped into one big messy “I don’t want to do this”package. I am not, by nature, a super social person. I like to have a small group of really great friends. Obviously, though, you make said small group of friends by meeting lots of people and weeding through them. I’m basically pretending that I just moved to LA and need to make new friends. It’s hard and it sucks and I don’t like it, but I’m doing it. I’m also on-line dating. It makes me feel pretty pathetic and awful but I don’t know where else you meet people – I don’t have friends to set me up and I don’t have time to go to a bar and meet someone. I have some dates lined up next week. I’m definitely not excited about it, but it is what it is.

5) Run. Jury’s still out on the pre-graduation celebration 1/2 marathon. I think I could run it, but I’m afraid it will hurt and after my first 1/2 when I was hurt and miserable and wanted to quit, I don’t want to run another race if I’m not completely confident in my abilities. So we’ll see. BUT. I did sign up for my very first full marathon! I had planned on running the Vegas R’n’R in December, but with the new time limits (and the emotional D baggage that goes along with being in Vegas) I decided it wasn’t a great idea. I questioned my darling Twitter friends and the beautiful Sarah suggested Long Beach in October. Close? Cheap? Flat? Sold.

So that’s where I am right now. The tone of this blog might change a little. It’s going to be a little more about finding myself, in running and in life. If that’s not your bag of donuts, no big deal. Thanks for stopping by. If it is, then stick around. Who knows what’s going to happen next?

Gidget’s Rule #2 – Don’t stop believing (See what I did there? With the Glee reference? Going back to the title? Yeah, stick around for more of that kind of wit).

>Debbie Downer Diets

21 Feb

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Finally got the alliteration down, thank you very much. I know you’re all impressed.

There was no workout today, hence no workout recap. I spent the morning being truly lazy, convincing Moondoggie to rub my knees and icing. I spent the afternoon learning about determinate sentencing schemes (don’t be jealous about how exciting my life is). I’ve been trying not to be too down about my knee – I’ve left a message with my doctor to get a referral for a PT and I’ve been doing an unbelievable amount of research on the internetz re: stretching/rolling/icing/generally fixing my IT Band. Hopefully I can get this taken care of sooner rather than later and be quasi-back on my (running shoe clad) feet. Until then, I’m looking at lots of short slow runs in my future.

One good thing to come out of this weekend was a pretty lovely (and surprising) weight loss. I’m down about 4 pounds since this post. I had suspected said weight loss for a while now, but wanted to see the lower number a few days in a row before making it “official.” I’ve only got about 5-10 pounds to go now, so that’s something. Hopefully my decreased mileage won’t adversely affect my weight loss. Time for more weights/elliptical/dance classes. It’ll be fun to switch things up a little bit, but I’m not convinced anything is quite as effective as running.

Another thing that may or may not have affected my weight loss was my deliciously glorious apple walnut french toast that I inhaled ate at brunch. I’m ok with that, though. Gidget’s #1 Rule: Never skimp on brunch.

How do you deal with injuries? Anyone have any awesome weight loss secrets?