I Like to Move It, Move It

Dudes. It happened. Moving happened.

My apologies on the silence, but seriously, do you know how much time it takes to go through three years of accumulated junk? Long time. And now it will take time to unpack a majority of said junk (the stuff that made it through my THROW AWAY ALL THE THINGS phase). BUT. Moving is done.

My boyfriend is my roommate, and that is AWESOME.

And, because I’m so much more excited about the bread nuggets in this salad than I should be, I’ll leave you with a picture. This is the view from the roof of our building.

I love this place.


Two Weeks

Two weeks from today GCB and I sign the lease to our very awesome, very OURS, very downtown loft.

Guys, I am FINALLY moving back into the city!!! I lived in the Central West End for a year back in 2008, and I LOVED it. I loved being able to run for less than half a mile and end up in Forest Park. I loved walking to assorted eateries and coffee shops. I loved the noise, the PACE, the fact that it seemed to pulse on exceptionally busy days. I moved straight to U City after the CWE and have been here for the last four years.

But oh man, I am so excited to get back. This time it will be even better! This time I’ll be MUCH more financially stable. Not to mention the whole “walking distance to both Busch Stadium AND Scottrade” thing; being super close to things like our favorite restaurant, my dentist, and the place I would go for PT on my hip; guaranteed parking spots; grocery store super close; etc.

The fact that I’m finally going to officially live with GCB? Icing on the cake.

The only problem? It’s still two weeks away. DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW FAR AWAY THAT IS?!

You see, two weeks is too long to go ahead and pack my kitchen, since we still use the majority of stuff frequently (hell, yesterday I used a pie plate to make chicken pot pie….when I’d originally thought I’d be packing it yesterday). Clothes? Yeah, right. I live in the midwest. I will probably need t-shirts AND hoodies over the next couple weeks. And you’ll all be pleased to know that no, in fact I cannot pack my bathroom stuff either as I’m quite attached to regular bathing.

I just…..I want to move NOW. I want it as bad as this Harbaugh wants cake. I WANT IT NOW.

Welcome to the Jungle

I didn’t think I would ever do this.

Let’s face it. I have been a blogger of one kind or another since back in the days of xanga. I have ranged from everyone reading being someone I know to no one reading being anyone I’ve met to some mutation of the two.

It’s never been 100% public. Until now.

What you see before you is the last year or so of what I had to say. The stuff before that? Doesn’t matter.

I mean, sure, it matters in an existential “I’m who I am because of those ‘before’ things,” but doesn’t so much matter in a “let’s show this to everyone” way. That part of me, while still there on the interwebs, will be just….there on the interwebs. A memory. Fading, as memories are wont to do.

So why change my mind now? Impulse I suppose.

The thing is, I already know there are those who won’t like or will disapprove of what I say/how I say it, of what I do, of who I am. And that’s fine. Don’t like? Don’t look.

But this is me. At one point in my life, I wasn’t entirely sure who “me” was, but I know the answer now.

Hi, I’m Ann. I would like to know you. Welcome.

Welcome to the jungle. We take it day by day.

Odd One

It has been a weird few weeks. It has not been bad, but it feels like some crazy shit’s up with the universe.

  • Some of my friends have been dealing with some SERIOUS shit lately. It’s pretty well breaking my heart for all of them, so I do what I do best. Send emails full of random links to funny things. Internet hugs. You know.
  • This past weekend was Mardi Gras. It was, as expected, a bit wild. The wildest part, though not entirely unexpected, was running into a former friend’s fiance. Our conversation was pretty successful in opening some old wounds and making me feel incredibly raw. Not his fault in the slightest, but it was still certainly odd.
  • On a brighter note, GCB and I have been approved for an apartment! We move downtown in just under six weeks. Walking distance to Busch Stadium and Scottrade Center? I’ll take it.
  • So. This past Friday I went to a sports medicine doc about my hip, which hadn’t been feeling much better in the four weeks since that stupid marathon. I had X-rays done plus an exam. Diagnosis? IT band shit, plus a little bursitis thrown in on top of that. I’m now on an anti-inflammatory regiment and will be starting up physical therapy soon. The thing is, I started the NSAIDs on Friday. Today, for the first time since before the race, I went lifting. I had MISSED it, and oh man it was good to be back. I’ll probably be sore tomorrow, but you know what? Worth it. I don’t like how I feel when I’m completely idle for weeks months at a time. I mean, putting my shoes on and driving to the gym, I started to get anxious about the potential pain, but the endorphin boost, seeing the other regulars, sweating, all of it just made me insanely happy.

  • On a somewhat related note, since my hip is neither torn nor fractured, very soon (as in before the end of the week) I’ll be signing up for Tough Mudder. I spent some time today building the framework for a training schedule that I’m pretty pumped about. This, of course, was decided the day after I found out that my marathon is causing me to lose probably my entire right big toenail. After still noticing traces of my blisters. At least that race isn’t until September, giving me a little time to slowly work back into things.
Guys, things have been crazy, but also very good. I am incredibly excited about some of the things I’ve already got planned, and can tell that 2013 is going to be the best year ever.

Hips Don’t Lie

This adventure is going to be VERY different from my last few adventures.

In fact there are two adventures I’m looking forward to in the very near future.

I know that I am less than three weeks past that stupid marathon. I also know that I am MISSING the routine, the gym, the outdoors.

Guys? I miss running.

Progress. It is awesome.

So. Adventures. No, I’m not doing another Ragnar (even though I would say yes to one in a heartbeat). No, I’m not signing up for STL’s April half marathon (or the October one, for that matter).

I’m moving on up.

September 14. I’m already excited.

However, there’s one more adventure I have to get through before I even consider training for something like this.

Next Friday I have an appointment with an orthopedist who specializes in hip injuries. You see, I have had this stabbing pain in my left hip when I walk more than ~300 feet since the marathon. I’ve dealt with hip soreness before, but in my right hip and more of an ache than a stab. It’s not debilitating, and I don’t limp (much….or noticeably), but I am absolutely petrified to even try to run on it. I won’t even go lift with it like this.

I am kind of scared as HELL about it. Best case scenario, I’m fine and just took longer to recover than I expected, so the doctor appointment will be a double-check. Worst case scenario, I’m heading for surgery.

Surgery is absolutely not wanted, but at least April has recommended to me the guy she had hip surgery with a few years ago.

One week. I’ll know in one week.

Enter Sandman

Up until this morning, every single waking second since my marathon has been spent with me fighting to keep my eyes open, to keep myself upright.

Apparently running/walking for 26 miles makes a person tired.

Getting sick-ish on top of that was just a bonus in the “how tired can Ann get” game.

Really tired, apparently.

I was going to spend this past weekend doing absolutely nothing but laying around my apartment, relaxing, catching up on sleep, etc, but then late last week I got a very special email. Remember my hockey blog? Right, well, remember that last year I got to go hang out at the Cardinals Winter Warm-Up complete with media credentials from the Cardinals blog in the network? Yeah, that happened again. So instead of my very relaxing weekend, I spent it on the motherfucking GO. All three days of my three day weekend. Gogogogogogo.

I could hardly keep my eyes open all day yesterday.

So last night I went to bed at 930. I hardly woke up when GCB got home (close to midnight….I think) and slept straight on through til 7am. I was supposed to get up around six, but I reset my alarm and kept right on snoozing.

Today? I feel FANTASTIC. This is the most awake I’ve felt in WEEKS. You know what not being tired does to a person? Makes that person HAPPY!!

This is not to say that I haven’t been happy, but oh my goodness being rested just started my day off so well.

Add that to the fact that this morning I spent a little time filling out my part of the application on an apartment for GCB and myself, plus tonight being a girls’ “wine and Magic Mike” night, well, I’ve been damn near giddy all day.

Guys, there are BIG changes ahead. Big, awesome, incredible changes that I am just so anxious to get to.

Today is a great day.

No Giving Up Now

I just have one thing to say.

I finished that fucking marathon.

Ok, so that’s not all I have to say about it, but dammit, it feels good to say it.

For one thing, let’s just all shake our heads at me (again) for running TWICE in the two months preceding this race. Dumb move, Ann. Very dumb move. Pretty sure if I’d have actually trained for it, I wouldn’t have walked the last eight miles.

BUT. It was walk those eight miles or keep running and injure myself and possibly not finish. So I walked.

I walked, and I finished, and I will never do this again.

Let’s talk about the race, shall we?

It all began at 2am EST when my alarm went off. Well, actually, I suppose it started when I went to bed at 7pm the night before, but I’ll stick to just Sunday. Two in the morning, which meant that most of the people I know here were STILL AWAKE. GCB was actually still three hours from the end of his shift. Crazy.

The pre-race stuff included a lot of “what were we thinking”s and “this is dumb”s and “we totally should have trained for this”s. It also included lots and lots of people who looked way more like runners than we did, THREE trips to the porta-potty before we even got in our corral (pre-race hydration, FTW), and this picture, wherein we still look happy:

Oh, did I mention it was 65 degrees at 4 in the morning? Because it was. God bless Orlando.

This race. 25,000+ runners, 530am EST start, fireworks, music, and more spectators than made sense given the hour.

Highlights and lowlights:

Mile 1: Had to stop and pee AGAIN before we hit the half mile mark. Not dying. Good times.

Mile 3: Looked out a bit and saw runners who we later realized were at mile 8. That’s right. They’d gone eight miles in the time we’d gone three. Buzzkill.

Mile 4-6: Came upon the castle. THE castle. All covered in lights and looking gorgeous, even though none of my pictures turned out. Ran through the castle at dawn. Still felt great.

Mile 7: Bad mile. Had a brief moment of “oh crap, I can’t breathe” followed by “oh crap, I can’t run.” The lung thing didn’t last. The leg thing did.

Mile 8: Ran around the WHOLE Disney race track. That was kind of cool. Cars characters and country music.

Mile 11: Ate a banana. Took Tylenol. Didn’t puke. I consider this a ridiculous success.

Mile 13: Laughed (because otherwise we would have cried) at our half marathon time, officially the worst I’ve ever run in 2:44.

Mile 15: This is where it got rough. My intervals of walking to running weren’t very awesome, and I could tell Steph was getting frustrated, so I sent her ahead. I also visited THE grossest porta-potty I’ve ever been in. Guys? I ran a Ragnar last year. The fact that THIS porta-potty was the grossest is really saying something.

Mile 17: Got into the Wide World of Sports Complex. Realized that continuing to run was going to probably result in a DNF.

Mile 18: Started walking for good.

Let me break real quickly to talk about this. I knew going into this race that I was physically and mentally so far beyond unprepared that it wasn’t even funny. I also knew that with only running twice to “prepare” for it that I would probably not be physically capable of running through all 26.2 miles. I know people who have put forth the effort to train for a marathon and have still not completed it due to injury. It might sound crazy, but I was finishing this race whether or not it meant army crawling my way across the finish line. So I chose to walk the last eight miles. I know, I KNOW, that if I had tried to continue running that I wouldn’t have crossed that finish line. It was an internal battle that threatened to burst out of my eyeballs, but at that point there wasn’t any giving up. I had started, I was going to finish no matter how long it took me.

Mile 20: Noted that after having gone nearly four straight miles with the sun at my back that I was probably going to be incredibly sunburnt, given that I hadn’t even thought about putting on sunscreen.

Mile 21: Heard “Sweet Caroline” four times in a row. This is too many times in a row. Took more Tylenol.

Mile 22: Chocolate! And?

As much pain as I was in at this point, I SKIPPED over to get a picture with these two. That maniacal grin stayed on my face for quite a while.

Mile 23: Walking NOTICEABLY became limping. Both hips were (and still are) very, very angry.

Mile 24: Got into the heart of Epcot. The park was open, so there were TONS of people on the side of the course cheering and being supportive, even for someone who was walking and (after looking at my race pictures) looking absolutely miserable. At 24.8 miles, passed the 40K sign. Kind of wanted to puke seeing that.

Mile 25: Hobbled. Tried not to cry. I was going to FINISH.

Mile 26.2: I ran across that finish line. The last tenth of a mile, I clenched my jaw, tried to ignore every square millimeter of the lower two-thirds of my body screaming in protest, and I ran. I must say, it took quite a bit of will-power to not burst into tears when they handed me my medal. I crossed that finish line at 6:12:58, and though that is literally HOURS after I’d planned on finishing when I signed up, I finished. That’s all I’m worried about.

Today I feel ok. I am exhausted, I am still limping, my muscles are still sore, my hips are still VERY angry, my lower back is still achy, but this afternoon when I laid down my hips didn’t hurt badly enough to make me cry like they did last night. This is progress. I know I’ll be sore for another couple of days, and that’s ok.

There’s a small part of me that wishes I would have finished faster, but that part is greatly overshadowed by just how much I’ve enjoyed what I’ve done these last few months INSTEAD of training.

And oh my goodness, I am OVER THE MOON excited to not have any single, solitary form of a training schedule. Anywhere. The half marathon in April that I was thinking of running, well, I might run it, but I’m not signing up for it just yet. If I decide I don’t want to? I’m ok with that. The Tough Mudder that was supposed to be in April is actually in September. As of two days ago, the only running/lifting/exercising in my immediate future is the kind that is going to make me HAPPY, the kind that makes me feel better and healthy, not the kind I feel obligated to do.

Guys? I finished a marathon. Then I celebrated with this.

Marathon. Check. Off to the next great adventure.


Well. I leave a week from tomorrow to fly down to Orlando for the marathon. Shit’s about to get interesting, folks. I mean, it has to be interesting considering that I’ve run just twice in the last six weeks. Oops

We only have to keep a 15 minute/mile pace, and I can walk that, so I’m hoping it won’t be too bad, but I’m also considering buying stock in Advil just in case.

It’s just….I’m still burnt out. I’ve been fighting through burnout for 7 months now. It hasn’t gotten better. Not really. There have been flashes of things getting better, but they’ve been fleeting and partial at best. I miss running being fun.

My friend Stephanie has set a goal for herself to finish a half marathon in under two hours in May. I’m in awe of that, as I’ve pretty well determined that I will not be setting any running goals for myself until it becomes fun again. I don’t foresee any running goals for a while.

The thing is, life’s been absurdly incredible lately. Even though I have the marathon in the back of my mind quite a bit, it’s not there like I thought it would be this close to the race. Yet I still, like I wrote a while back, don’t care.

I can’t bring myself to take so much time away from doing what I promised myself I’d do a long time ago and live in the moment. And my god have these moments been incredible. I was chit chatting with Josey on Skype the other day, and we were discussing the changes we’ve both seen in our blogging habits/twitter habits/etc. She pointed out that besides the 30 days of posts I did last November, I haven’t really written a whole lot since September of 2010.

She was absolutely right. Looking back I’ve noticed that instead of writing about the things I WISHED would happen, or lamenting about the opportunities I didn’t have, I went out and got to living. That became the priority over writing. It was worth it.

Now, instead of beating myself up about the fact that my training has been absolute shit, about the fact that I’ve completely blown off any and everything even related to this marathon (ask me how many calzones I’ve eaten over the last month), I’ve just rolled with it. This has made me so happy.

It’s amazing the kind of relief you can get by recognizing that the choices you’ve made (for instance, the ones made to spend time with your new boyfriend and make memories together rather than going for yet another training run) were made for reasons, and if they made you happy, there’s no sense being upset at what other thing you didn’t do.

Live and let live, I suppose.

Either way, I have a marathon in just over a week, which is crazy stupid to me. This plan was not well thought out. Because it will make it even more memorable, Stephanie and I are going to try live-tweeting the whole thing. Well, whenever we get a chance to tweet we will. I’m sure there will be plenty of walking breaks. Follow along if you want. I will be there, living another crazy experience.

Some Nights

Tonight we ring in a new year, and what a year it’s been.

I have tried writing this post nearly every day over the last week, yet I just can’t seem to find the words. This year has been more than I could ever expected in every single facet.

Tonight’s festivities will be spent around some of my best friends in the world, all of us dressed to the absolute nines and just basking in the glow of being young and alive and in love (and having gotten through that pesky apocalypse thing).

This year has been by far the best year of my whole life.

Next year? It’s going to be even better.

Happy, happy new year to all of you! I hope it’s everything you hope for it to be and more.

See you in 2013!!

We Don’t Care Anymore

So it’s really happening.

On Friday Steph emailed me confirmation for our hotel.

On Monday we both booked our flights.

Yesterday I reserved the rental car.

Welp. I guess I’m going to run a marathon.

I mean, yeah, I’ve known I was going to run a marathon for months now (eight of them, actually). I’ve been signed up since EARLY APRIL. I’ve been running and running all year.

All except the last little while. Why?

Honestly, because I can’t bring myself to care anymore. The burnout that hit me hard right before Ragnar never really left. I made it through Ragnar. I struggled my way through another half, then giggled my way through yet another since then.

And I don’t care.

Close to two weeks ago I went out on a sixteen mile run. I made it 12 (two fucking hours of running) before my hip stopped me. And I cried and walked limped the last four miles home. The very next day I went out and got brand new HOT FUCKING PINK running shoes.

They’re still sitting in the box.

Because I don’t care.

I want to care, but I don’t. I want to go out and give my new shoes a spin, but I’d rather go get drinks with my friends. I want to spend the next few Sundays building my mileage to a previously unheard of (to me) level, but at least this week I’d rather go to the Chicago Bears game with GCB.

I want to get to a point where I am READY, mentally and physically, to run 26.2 damn miles all at once, but I feel like with six weeks left, the physical part is going to be perhaps decent since I’m not starting at nothing and the mental part? Well, I’m going to finish the thing, but it will be slow.

And I don’t care.

Guys? Marathon training is HARD. I would totally recommend NOT signing up for one when you’re on a combined high of friend-in-town plus just-met-amazing-new-boy plus feeling-in-great-shape-four-days-prior-to-a-half-marathon.

Half marathons? Fun. Glorious. A great fucking time. I love half marathons. Seriously. No sarcasm font. This? Mileage this high? Not fun.


I’ll run when I can. I’ll lift when I can. I’ll go out on my long runs and pray that both my hip and the water I bring with me both hold out. I’ll try to maintain my current physical fitness level and hope that maybe the next six weeks will actually help me out.

And I’ll run it.

Then I’ll never consider running another full marathon ever again.

Marathons? We are never getting back together.