Someone Always Thinks You’re A Star

As you know by now, the past two months haven’t been easy.

I’ve been through a breakup.

The breakup resulted in a move.

Stress levels have been high, to say the least.

I’m starting to feel very overwhelmed. I have so much on my plate right now and feel like I’m spread too thin. As a result, I don’t feel like I’m doing my best at everything, which is frustrating because I only want to do the best I can for everyone.

Instead, I feel like I’m trying to be as awesome as possible, but due to time constraints and over-committing to things, I’m just managing to put forth mediocre efforts.

My plea earlier for more hours in the day? I wasn’t kidding. If my wish is granted, I won’t even use those hours to sleep. I’ll use them to get work done, see my friends, plan trips I want to take, be a better Maid of Honor for my best friend and finally get this blog self hosted (which has been on my To Do list for roughly two months).

But this brings me to my point…

No matter how stressed you are, no matter how crappy you think you’re playing the game of life and no matter how hard on yourself you may be, there is someone out there who thinks you’re a star.

Tonight, despite an insanely busy work schedule, I managed to make it to the gym for two classes: Rubber Band Pilates (disappointing) and Spinning with one of my favorite instructors.

Every week during this spin class, the instructor has been bringing two Starburst to class, and awarding them to the “Star” at the end of the class.

So every week I work really hard, both because I want to break a solid sweat and because red and pink Starburst are my favorite candy. Both great incentives, no?

Tonight, I went into class feeling defeated about all the aforementioned factors in life. I even forgot about the Starburst that Shana would give out during the cool down. Forget about candy? That’s how you know I’m feeling off!

I pushed hard during class. My legs felt faster than they have in a long time and every time we had the option of “cranking it up a notch” or “making it harder,” I went for it.

Imagine my surprise when two Starburst — one red, one pink — were placed on my handlebars as I toweled down my sweaty face at the end of class.

I. Was. Pumped.

It’s amazing how such a little acknowledgment turned my entire mood around. Sure, it’s not a big deal. But Shana didn’t know how stressed I was today. She didn’t know that my To Do list has extended onto three sheets of paper and one “Note” typed out in my phone.

She just thought I was a Star today.

I’ll take it.

I’d love to say I saved those Starbursts as reminders to hold onto when things get tough in the future, but I ate them already.

TELL ME: Anything good. Brag your face off. Tell me something awesome you did today. Tell me a goal you achieved recently. Tell me a funny joke.

Lastly, I loved reading everyone’s marathon stories yesterday and then reading the non-running goals today. A lot of you want to swim and get your yoga on — I love it! Thank you for sharing!



29 Responses

  1. I’m so glad things are looking up for you – even though you might be a little stressed out right now. I feel like I’m in the same boat and life is kicking the crap out of me…but we’ll get through it – one Starburst at a time. 🙂

  2. I really enjoyed this post. I am going through the exact same thing. I feel like I’m overcommited but where should I pull back? I want to participate in everything. Life can get so full and it’s hard to pick what I want to do the most.

    I wish they gave out starbursts in my spin class!!

  3. Aww! What a great way to motivate a spin class – I’d be ALL over those starburst too! I’m glad it cheered you up…sometimes it truly is the little things, right? Hmm something I achieved that made me feel good this week? Finally getting into a groove at my new job where I’m feeling less like an outsider and more like part of the team. Feels really good. Especially after having the SAME job for six years prior. Talk about upheaval!

  4. Hmmm something good to tell you… You are an amazing Maid of Honor! The fact that you already bought tickets to come down this summer to visit and help plan makes me so happy! (especially since it’s technically my turn to be going up to see you). The fact that we chated on the phone the other night for an hour also makes me happy! You are already an amazing MOH and an even more amazing Real Best Friend! Go to yoga to destress a bit, everything will be ok! I love you!!!

  5. You are a star! I love that the instructor gives out Starburst to remind her students of their awesomeness. Sometimes it really is the little things.

    I know things have been super tough for you and I really appreciate that you’re keeping it real. Going through major (sometimes traumatic) life changes is no easy feat. You are staying strong, being honest, and giving each day your best.

  6. What a great idea!!! I’m telling you, instructors can really tell when someone has had a bad day and is there to “get away” from the real world for an hour. It’s our gift. 🙂

  7. Sometimes all it takes is a pat on the back from someone, to know that your hard work and stress is paying off. I love that feeling- when someone pays you an unexpected compliment, and suddenly everything seems so much better. Congrats on those Starbursts, because I know you earned them!

  8. I’m getting braver each day about adjusting to my new life in this foreign country. (I live in Amsterdam now with my Dutch bf!) I miss my parents/friends/home A LOT but with each passing day it’s a mini victory 🙂

    PS I loved this post.

  9. The more I read your stories and posts, the more I love love your blog. Way to come back strong from a difficult time! You’re an inspiration! Hmmm…today I baked egg muffins! I know it seems small but I’m not a very good cook and they turned out delish. Gold star for me!

  10. I am alway amazed by the all the things you do in a day, I don’t even get half of that done.

    Give your self some slack you can’t always be doing so much.
    Slow down and don’t worry about doing all those things some things can wait you know 🙂

  11. What a great post!! You are definitely a star and I love reading your blog – but I totally know the feeling of just feeling off/totally downtrodden!

    Let’s see, something good – I made egg on toast for dinner. Not fancy, not especially pretty, but the best comfort food that I know, and it totally made my night 🙂 My grandma always used to make it when I was little and now it’s just a little piece of home on a plate.

  12. What a cute idea for an instructor to do that!
    Thank you for continuing to be so open on your blog about disappointments and stresses as well as all the happy, fun times – I think looking your stress in the face and how you can ease it (even in little ways) is so smart. I love the idea of always remembering that someone thinks you’re a star, even when you don’t feel like it (I can totally relate right now…)
    You are doing great dealing with everything you’re facing right now, Ali! I wish you lived in Boston so we could hang out 🙂

  13. What a cute idea…handing out starbursts! I have been reading your blog for just a short while, but I love reading it and I think that you are awesome! Even through all the hard stuff, just remember that it soon will pass…keep your chin up!!!

  14. You’re positive attitude is infectious (in a good way, of course!!!!). A recent achievement I am proud of is fiiiinally getting into an MPH program I’ve had my eye on since 2007 — hard work really does pay off!!!!

  15. what a cool incentive! that’s awesome that today was YOUR day too – you obviously rocked that class HARD!

    recent accomplishment: I beat my usual 5K time by FIVE whopping minutes on my first official 5K race this sunday – i felt BEASTLY and i got a free coupon for a wendy’s frosty (hey, i’ll take it!) and a cute little flower. my boss at work also printed me my own business cards – nice!

  16. Today I walked 2.25miles to work after my 5mile run and walked home in the misting rain despite exhaustion. Fresh air is always better than a packed subway 🙂

  17. I made granola bars for my bff for her anniversary…i lso resisted temptation to run when i knew i needed to take it easy! it can be soo hard!

    ooh starburst yum!

  18. WHAT A GREAT POST. Seriously, LOVE it. You may not have saved those Starburst, but I think I may be saving this post for when I’m having a rough day 🙂

    It sounds like you may be too busy for this, but I went through a similar rough patch last year when my long-term bf and I broke up… if you ever want to go out for a fitness class/run/coffee/drinks/etc, drop me a line 🙂

  19. What a refreshing post. I really like your positive attitude. I have felt incredibly stressed lately– mainly due to work-related stuff, but I’m trying to have that same attitude. Sometimes it only takes a funny or sweet comment from a kid (I work with kids as a counselor) or an unexpected compliment from a co-worker to make my day.

  20. Pink starburst?! LUCKY!! Now I’m craving them 🙂 Guess I’ll have to settle for polishing off the Cadbury mini eggs instead. I love how you see the positive in everything…where are we without happiness?! You go girl!!!

    My awesome achievements of the day…I made the most badass scrambled eggs ever, actually got the laundry washed and FOLDED (wow), and ate two whole avocados. Happy Tuesday!

  21. I think you are a star! 🙂 Whenever I read your blog, I am so inspired because you manage to do so much! You get in long runs before most people even start their day.. on a regular basis.. and that in and of itself is amazing.

    Maybe this will make you smile – today I was making something in my magic bullet.. at about 9am. I screwed it on too tightly. And couldn’t get the lid off. So I had to wait until someone else came home.. at 6pm… to enjoy my concoction. Still…it was worth the wait!

  22. HECK YES! TWO STARBURST! and those are totally the best flavors! that is so awesome! good job! =]
    will i see you at spin tomorrow?

    1. The question is, will I see YOU at spin tomorrow? It’s been too long since we’ve pedaled together. YES, I’ll be there tomorrow. Wouldn’t miss Matt for the world. (And if it’s not Matt, I’ll probably cry.)

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about ali

I’m the creator of the Ali on the Run blog and the host of the Ali on the Run Show podcast. I’m also a freelance writer and editor, a race announcer, a runner and marathoner, a mom, and a huge fan of Peanut M&Ms, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (way better than the first one!), and reliving my glory days as a competition dancer in the early 2000s. I’m really happy you’re here.
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