I Will Run A Marathon Tomorrow

So the Big Day is finally here.

Well. It’s tomorrow.

Today is all about resting, relaxing, hydrating, carbing, salting, driving and outlet shopping.

What? There are outlets on the way to the Hamptons…I don’t think it’s weird that my priorities today include discount shopping.

I’m very overwhelmed by the abundance of kind thoughts being sent my way this week. Yesterday felt like my birthday at the office.

My coworkers made generous donations toward my fundraising efforts.

Check it out. Second place for the time being! (And I’d really like to stay there, so if you’d like to make a last-minute contribution, there’s still time. If every reader donated just $15–$20 today, I’d have second place locked down.)

They gave me cards…

I work with a bunch of creatives. Can you tell?
Signed by everyone. Insert Ali tears here.
Look at me go!

The one signed by the entire company actually made my cry. Then again, everything this week makes me cry.

And they gave me presents.

These are a few of my VERY favorite things.

Is it weird that everyone knew to give me a lot of food? I guess my passions in life are obvious.

Yesterday was a really great day. It was insanely busy at the office, but I was feeling awesome all day.

And when it was finally time to leave work, my coworkers made a Jazz Hand Tunnel through which I exited.


It. Was. Fantastic.

So I left the office smiling like a fool, ran a few errands, did my laundry and started packing.

I came home to another adorable Good Luck card from my college roommate.


People know me so well.

I met a friend of mine who is a boy and who, yes, is my boyfriend, for dinner. We ate early, watched some “Modern Family” and got plenty of quality sleep last night.

That nice boyfriend of mine also came bearing more gifts, including a card that made me cry over my sushi (yup). He visited three Lululemon stores in order to get the bag I’ve been eyeing for weeks and that he “knew I’d never buy myself.”

True story. And inside the bag was the sweatshirt he also “knew I wasn’t ever going to buy.”

And then I cried a little more, probably into my soy sauce. Poor guy went to three Lululemons.


People kept telling me the night before the night before is the most important, and I’m proud to report that I got tons of quality shut-eye.

Coach Cane wanted me to run two miles this morning. “Nothing approaching marathon goal pace,” he said. “Just enough to stay loose. Remember, caged animal on race day. GRRRR!”

I love him.

So I ran two miles, Handsome Friend in tow. Or just…with me. Whatever.

We ran to Central Park because I am cheesy and I wanted to go to the spot “where it all started.”

Central Park, near the Met

I filmed my Run For The Rabbit stuff back in April, just a few days after moving into my new apartment. My life was at a major turning point at the time.

I had gone through a miserable breakup, moved into a new apartment and was, apparently, about to start a 20-week marathon training program. Holy overwhelming.

These weeks have changed my life. I’ve met incredible people. I’ve pushed my physical and mental limits. I’ve trained for a freakin’ marathon during a Crohn’s flare-up.

So today I went back to that place where I first began this whole process.

And I jumped.

I am Ali and I'm jumpinggggg

Because what else would I do, really?

In 30 minutes, I’ll grab my carefully packed bags, load up the rental car and drive out to the Hamptons.

False. I won’t drive. But I’ll be a really good passenger. I made a mix for the ride.

I’ll eat lunch. I’ll go shopping. I’ll check into the hotel. I’ll see if there’s a pool. You never know.

I’ll get dinner with my fellow Run For The Rabbit runners.

I’ll hopefully get some sleep.

And tomorrow, I will run a marathon.

The conditions may not be ideal — right now Whorish Mama Nature is trying to tell me she’s going to dump rain on me with a solid side of humidity.

To her, I say, bring it. I’m still going to run 26.2 miles. I may sweat just a little more (if that’s possible), but it’s still going to happen.

My brother, Ryan, also thinks Mother Nature is a bitch that I shouldn’t bother with. His reaction to the weather forecast: “100% chance of success and fun.” I like it.

I can’t wait to see my friends and family out there. I can’t wait to lace up my shoes. I can’t wait to get a big fat kiss from my boyfriend at the finish line. Though in an email last night, my mom politely inquired whether “it’s set in stone that he gets the first hug and kiss, or could we possibly make it a group hug?”

That made me cry, too.

And I got some solid, last-minute advice from my Uncle Glenn: “I have a few ideas to help you. This coming from somebody who once ran 20 yards to avoid getting stung by a wasp, then had a beer and took a two hour nap. This all qualifies me to give advice. So, the night before the race, get hammered. It will calm your nerves. You seem to have a problem with your nutrition while running. So at mile 7, have two chocolate cupcakes from your favorite baker. That should last until about mile 15, when you should have a pint of your favorite frozen yogurt from 16 Handles. Nearing mile 20, a nice juice box full of your favorite boxed wine should last you for a while. At the end of the race is Handsome Friend/Boyfriend with a bottle of champagne and Moose Tracks ice cream. Just a thought.”

I may not take all of his advice, but I think it’s pretty solid, and I’m sure Coach Cane would agree.

Alright, one last bit of gushing and then I promise, I’m done being sappy…

I am so deeply grateful for all of the love, support, well wishes, donations and kind words you have all given me over the past 500 or so miles. You will all be on my mind when the miles start to hurt tomorrow. You have motivated me, inspired me, gone running with me, emailed me, Tweeted me, hugged me, cried with me and pushed me. You embraced your inner sweatiness and bought Sweat shirts to help me raise $6,000 for charity (that’s right — that much money just from shirt sales, which is mind-blowing).

I promise to do my very best to make you all proud tomorrow. Thank you for being so nice.

It’s go time!

See you tomorrow morning, Springs School!

The next time you hear from me, I’ll be a marathoner!

And I’ll probably be limping or crying next to my foam roller. But I’ll still be a marathoner!



0 Responses

  1. i just checked out twitter, i couldn’t wait for the recap (which is apparently being written at the very moment). congrats!!!!! Ali, you’re a marathoner!!! also, i love how Lauren posted a (boy)friend pic.. c’mon we’ve seen his back already ;).

  2. Aliiii! I found your blog a couple weeks ago and rifled through your marathon prep posts with zeal. I’ve been silently rooting for you all day. I bet it went great, girl! Thanks for being so gosh-darned inspirational even to someone like me who just started running three weeks ago. 😀

  3. dear ali…so i may be a little tipsy right now which i am sure you can appreciate but i tracked you via twitter from coach cane and your friends/family and i am so excited for you! CONGRATS you are awesome and i wish I would be able to run a marathon..let alone five miles…. all of your hard work has definitely paid off!!!!

  4. Right now you are running your heart out and (hopefully) enjoying every minute of it. We are so proud of you, Ali. You have been so inspiring over the past 5 months! I can’t wait to hear all about it!

  5. I’ll be thinking of you (per Sweaty Emily) and am in awe of the support of all those around you – so kickass you have so many awesome people on your side! And I like Uncle Glenn. Tell him I’ll give his advice a test run at my next race 🙂

    Good luck!

  6. YAY! IT’S FINALLY HERE! I can’t wait to hear how it goes. You are going to be fantastic. Also…I was thinking. I’m sure you are going to be taking lots of pictures at the finish line. So that Handsome Friend of yours better be on the blog tomorrow!

  7. You are going to do amazing and I SOOOOO can’t wait to hear all about it! Ahhh! I can’t believe it’s tomorrow…I’m so excited for you I feel like I’m running one all over again, too!!!

  8. I have been totally out of the blog loop for a few weeks (major life upheaval myself) and something led me over to my severely neglected blog reader — so glad I did! I can’t believe tomorrow is the race, so excited for you!! I can’t wait to hear all about it, and I’d be honored to support the great cause. A donation is coming your way…

  9. I have been reading throughout your training and am so excited for you to DOMINATE this marathon tomorrow!!!!!!!! Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  10. Congratulations on your amazing training – you are going to kick this marathon’s booty! There are so many people cheering for you and it doesn’t matter how slow or fast you finish – you are AWESOME and it has been such a joy to read all about your training.

  11. I am really so incredibly excited for you Ali. I am also so proud. You were my inspiration when I was training for Chicago and you have given me hope as I continue to battle this injury.
    Whenever I have a bad day, whether it be frustration with this injury or whatnot, I would turn to your blog to cheer me up. Sure there were some days where I burst into tears because I missed running so much, but that’s a different story. 😉

    I realize that you will probably read this after you are officially a marathoner :D, but I know that you are going to rock it and show those 26.2 who’s boss!

    Congratulations on a job well done and enjoy the experience! 😀 I can’t wait to read the recap and continue following your running adventures.

    Keep reaching for the stars!

  12. Best wishes for an awesome, strong, maybe even speedy 26.2 miles. No matter what happens – come hell or high water or (more likely) rain or chafing or stomach issues – tomorrow will be the day you become a marathoner. Congratulations!

  13. I’ve been reading your blog for a while now- I love your overall attitude toward life! I wish you the best of luck tomorrow, I’m sure you’ll do great!

  14. Ali, I’m so excited for you that the day is here! I’ve enjoyed reading your progress as you’ve trained for this. Forget the weather – you’re going to own this marathon!!

  15. I am so happy I found your blog and got to follow you through this training. I have lots of food allergies and thought I wouldnt be able to run bc of what I can’t eat. You are truely inspirational and I know you will be AMAZING at the Hamptons!

  16. Your co-workers rock, but not as hard as you will rock the Hamptons tomorrow!

    Woo-hoo! Good luck! Run your best, but remember to take in the scenery and enjoy every minute of it. You’re going to be great. Can’t wait for the recap!

  17. best of luck! i actually started reading your blog on the day you got accepted to be a part of the jack rabbit team (via a link from Theodora). i feel like i’ve been with you throughout this entire journey (reading but not commenting since i used to feel weird commenting and not having a blog – which i still don’t, but got over that). can’t believe it’s tomorrow. i <3 sweat!

  18. I havent followed you from the beginning of the marathon training but still, it always seemed to be so far away. I know you’ll have a fantastic time and I know you can do it 🙂

  19. I am SO SO SO SO excited for you!!!!! I can’t wait to hear about how you crushed the hills, weather, and 26.2 miles! You are more than ready for this marathon! Run fast, have fun, and ENJOY THIS RACE! You’ll never have a first marathon again. Take it all in. 🙂 Good luck!!

  20. Good luck and congrats on being a soon-to-be marathoner!! You are awesome girl. Loved that advice from your uncle haha hilarious! This was a beautiful post too, so happy for you 😀

  21. Ali, I’m in tears at my office reading this post. I am just so excited for you. I’ll be thinking of you while I pass out Team Challenge information cards in my Sweat Shirt tomorrow morning. Kick some ass out there, girl! Tomorrow you become a marathoner.

  22. Oh gosh Ali, this totally made me want to cry. I have pretty much been following your blog just since you started training and it is amazing to watch the 20 weeks. Wow I am so happy for you. You are such an inspiration. i am really nervous about running 18 tomorrow in the rain but I am going to go at it because you are. you are going rain or shine so can i! Congrats!

  23. Good luck tomorrow! Keep smiling! Just think of the rain as a prop for your sexy race photos, no? Just wanted to actually thank you for sharing his incredible adventure. I’ve been religiously checking your blog every morning, and everytime I run in CP I hope to see you whizz by. I know you’ll kill it tomorrow and we’ll all be thinking of you xx

  24. I’m not sure if I’ve ever commented but I’ve been following you for a while and I think you are amazing and an inspiration. Wishing you so much luck for tomorrow. You’ve got this girl. Run strong!

  25. Ali. Go out and run this thing. Have fun. Laugh in the face of Crohn’s disease. Show him (her?) who’s boss. Cross the finish line and EMBRACE that feeling of completing 26.2 miles. Bathe in it. You’ve worked hard. Be in the moment.

    You’re amazing. Best of luck.

  26. I’ve never commented here before but this last post had me beaming with joy for you!!! Good Luck tomorrow and if it’s possible…enjoy it, there will NEVER be anther 1st marathon!!


  27. Ali, you are AWESOME, you love sweat, and you’ve trained hard! Those 3 things are going to get you through tomorrow. Your blog has quiclkly become my most favorite blog ever and I can’t wait to read about your race. My first marathon was in 20 degree temps with 5 inches of snow on cape cod and I’m pretty sure I was swearing at mother nature the whole time, but it was still SO much fun. Good luck tomorrow! We’re all cheering for you!

  28. Ali, I started reading your blog around the time you got picked for Run for the Rabbit, and I’m so excited for you that the big day is here (… or almost here). I can’t wait to hear all about it! I’ve also appreciated how you’ve blogged about the great parts and the tough parts, and I’ll be sporting some I {Heart} Sweat spirit this weekend in your honor.

  29. Good luck Ali! You will rock your first marathon. You are TOTALLY prepared. Trust in your training and let it take you all the way to the finish. And then savor that just-finished-a-marathon-feeling. There is seriously nothing better!!! 🙂

  30. If you could win a marathon from support and love, you would be the new world record holder. Ali, I which you the very best tomorrow and I won’t lie there will be some lows, but there will also be extreme highs. So high, that I guaruntee your arms are going to be wrapped around every runner crossing that line with you, around the person who hands you your medal, and every volunteer at that finish line before you can even make it to that handsome and odviously smart boyfriend of yours or even your mom. And remember you only get one first marathon so do what you do best and dance and smile your way to the finish. Good Work!

  31. Go Ali!!! I just know that tomorrow is going to be an incredible experience and you are going to rock all 26.2 of those miles! I just got into running recently and finished my first half a few weeks ago (and of course I’m in LOVE), and your blog has been a major source of wisdom and encouragement. You are such an inspiration! Hope everything goes wonderfully and you have so much fun!

  32. ALI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOOD LUCK tomorrow! You are going to be amazing. Just remember to enjoy the experience – it’s like nothing you’ve ever experienced before. I promise. 🙂

  33. Such a great post! You are a big inspiration to me and every one else who reads your blog. I love that Handsome Friend/Boyfriend went to three lululemons to get you all of the right goodies before your race. I still have to check out a lululemon, but we only have one here.

    Can’t wait to read your race report, future marathoner!

  34. A. Go kick some 26.2 ass, girl!
    B. Your post made me cry.
    C. I will wear my sweat shirt in honor of you tomorrow! All day. Even if it is covered in sweat!

  35. I’m a new follower… and I’ve spent this morning reading your blog. You’re amazing and I have no doubt that you’re going to rock this run! 🙂

  36. You are going to kick ass tomorrow, Ali! I rocked my I heart sweat shirt to a PR at my race on Wednesday night (and sadly forgot to take a picture. It was one sweaty I heart sweat shirt by the end of the race), so I think that’s a good omen. I’ve never commented on your blog before, but I’ve been really inspired by your optimism and your joie de vivre since I started reading your blog. I’m rooting for you from San Francisco!

  37. YESSSSSSSS!! It’s here! Cannot wait to hear about every mile, and how awesome it felt crossing that finish line. You rock Ali! All the best today, tonight, and most especially, TOMORROW. I’ll be doing my longest training run tomorrow morning, and I already know it’ll be motivating to be thinking that someone I “know” is running a marathon right now..and killin it! Good luck!

  38. I am so excited for you, Ali! I haven’t commented before, but I have been following your journey and have been SO inspired by you! And I made a donation this morning, too! Enjoy tomorrow!

  39. Good luck girlfriend! you’re AWESOME! Don’t forget to pack your A-game for tomorrow, that IS afterall the most important accessory to pack!

    I have no doubt you’ll rock it though.

  40. Agreed. Please post pics of the Lulu goodies! And we need to make a date for wine, cupcakes and sushi and a BIG HUG for post-marathon! I am so proud of you, lady.

    This marathon will have no idea what hit it.

  41. You are truly inspiring and I will send you all the positive vibes for when the miles get to the hurty stage.

    As for your Mom wanting the first hug/group hug… did she forget about the part where you might pee yourself a little? Maybe if you remind her she’d be willing to let handsome boyfriend have the first snuggle! 🙂 Just kidding.

    Good Luck Ali! You’re gonna do fabulously and I can’t wait to read all about it.

  42. Ali, you are going to rock this marathon! And I will do jazz hands at some point during my run tomorrow in honor of your big day!

  43. Good luck! I wore my I<3 sweat shirt today in the park in hopes of seeing you to give you a good luck high five. And I did see you but didn't realize it was you until after I passed (I'm guessing because I had sweat in my eyes). I've been reading your blog for awhile now, but never commented… but since you are running a marathon tomorrow I figured today was the day to comment! Best of luck!

  44. HAHAHA, love Uncle Glenn! Even though I already gave you a shout-out on my blog AND emailed you AND plan to text you later on, I’mma go for the overkill and post it here, too– GOOD LUCK! You’ve got this in the bag, sister! 😉 xoxo

  45. The Last Post Before the Marathon! I think I also want to cry for you and can’t stop thinking about how exciting the next 24 hours is going to be for you. Kick the Hamptons Marathon in the ass. Kick Mother Nature in the ass. and just KICK ASS like you already have been. Can’t wait to hear how it goes!! we must plan a celebration upon your return. 🙂

  46. You are so inspiring Ali!!! I have been reading your blogs and tweets and following your amazing journey. You’ve inspired me (and I’m sure so many others) to run harder and faster and after finishing my 1st real race last weekend, I signed up for another one. Best of Luck tomorrow…although I know you won’t need it!!!! You’re amazing girl…YOU’RE RUNNING A MARATHON…go get ’em!!!!! Can’t wait to read your 1st blog post as a marathoner 🙂

  47. Like I said yesterday, we’ll be waiting with bated breath here in the online world. You’ve done so well, and I’m so excited for you. All I really want to hear about is what you eat at the bakery after the race, and how many beers you consume. 😉

    Congrats. You’re all ready!

  48. Ali!! I am so incredibly excited for you! No matter what Mother Nature throws at you tomorrow morning, I know you are going to DOMINATE! You have come so far in these past few months – it’s been amazing to watch. I can’t wait to hear how tomorrow goes, and until you can say “I am a marathoner!!”

    Sending so many strong and speedy thoughts your way!

  49. You’ve got it!Love the notes from coach cane and your uncle. You will rock this!! So excited for you!!!

    And Yay! You’ve confirmed what I thought true about #2!!! (Post wasn’t up at the time…) Congrats!!!

  50. Go Ali!!!! I can’t wait to hear all about it tomorrow! 🙂
    And wow – 3 lululemons – that boy is a keeper! I’m not sure my boyfriend even realizes what that store is…probably its good though, then he doesn’t notice when I’m constantly wearing new lulu stuff! haha.
    Good luck, we are all cheering for you!

  51. Post pics of the Lululemon goodies!! Best of luck, you will kick some serious a$$ out there. Off to go make that last minute donation` you asked for!

  52. you are going to rock this bitch… this bitch being the marathon. i will be thinking of you (and your mmmsauce) tomorrow! we shall reunite soon and I will finally experience drunk ali. can’t freakin’ wait.

  53. Jazz hands definitely are the best! You’ll do great tomorrow! It’s been fun reading about your journey – I’m looking forward to the recap (and pics of your cute new lululemon gear!). Most importantly, have fun!

  54. I cannot believe how excited I am about your marathon tomorrow. Have I ever met you? Nope. But following your journey here Ali has been so awesome and I really feel lucky to have found your blog.
    I love my I HEART SWEAT shirt. I do think it is very cute but that is not why I love it. I wear it with pride because I know that I played some small part in supporting a person (you!) who stood up for lots of people (anyone with Crohn’s or any kind of digestive disorder or really anyone AT ALL who has ever faced any obstacle, physical or otherwise). By training for this marathon you have inspired so many to dream big and to fight for those dreams and I thank you for that.
    Tomorrow will be an amazing day for you! You are running a marathon!!! Enjoy every minute of it – you have earned it. Hooooray!!!!

  55. You are going to do great! I can’t wait to hear all about it! Before my marathon in Iceland i went to the mall and watched Something Borrowed and ate and drank (gatorade). Shopping definitely helps 🙂 I’m not sure about the pool though…I skipped out on the hot springs until after. GOOOOOOOOOD LUCKKKKKKK! 🙂

  56. have loved reading your blog since April when I found it. You are an inspiration and an overall joy to be around (from what I can gather…I’m not actually around you, because that would be weird since I live in MI and we’re not real life friends…but you know what I mean). You will do amazing tomorrow and I hope one day that I can train to at least run a half marathon with as much grace and laughter as you have been training with. (Worst grammatically done sentence ever.) Good luck, don’t break a leg literally but figuratively and have fun. I’ll be thinking of you!
    P.S. Your uncle is a guy after my own heart. Your bro, too.

  57. YAYYYYYYY good luck!!!!!!!!! So so so so so SO excited for you! “Remember, caged animal on race day. GRRRR!” – HAHAHAHA. Coach Cane is amazing. Love that man. Even though I do not know him. I also like your Uncle Glenn. Can’t wait to hear all about tomorrow, you will be AMAZING — I have zero doubts in my mind about this.

  58. You are going to KILL this, ALI! Your post made me cry…. seriously it’s so motivating!!! You’ll be in my thoughts as you’re racing along! You’ve put in the time and now its your time to shine 🙂 Corny but true… xoxo

  59. You are going to rock this marathon!! Your co workers, friends.. all so sweet! I would have been to the point of tears at everything you’ve mentioned.

    Andyour handsome boyfriend knows what the deal is.. 3 lulus? Awesome.

    Thinking of you.. and will of course be thinkgin of you tomorrow as well! 🙂

  60. I am so excited for you! I’ve been seeing your tweets about the weather and my first marathon I ran was in pouring rain, thunder and lightening for the first 2 hours…. but I still had an awesome race!! I think my mind was more focused and worried about the rain that I didn’t get freaked out or extrememly nervous about running 26.2 miles.

    You’ve done all this training…. nothing can stop you from doing it!
    Good luck!!!!!!

    p.s. I love your blog!

    ALL MY HUGS AND KISSES. xoxoxoxoxoxo

  62. YES!! I can’t believe the marathon is finally here! Enjoy your day and keep your stress low. Stay focused, eat well, deep breathe, and get some sleep! Have an amazing time running, and whatever happens, remember all the hard work and fun you’ve put into this. Good luck!!!!

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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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