Thankful Things Thursday: On Success, Skiing & Sneakers

Hellooooooo, and Happy Thursday! How’s your day so far? Wonderful? Excellent. That’s what I like to hear.

In today’s edition of Thankful Things Thursday, I will tell you about all the things I’m feeling thankful for. It’s basically the same as every other Thursday, in which I do the same thing. So come along, let’s get grateful!

I’m thankful I made it to the start and finish lines healthy in Las Vegas. When I was training for the Hamptons Marathon, Coach Cane repeatedly told me that his goal was to get me to the start and finish lines healthy. So if that makes me a successful race, then by all means the Las Vegas Half this weekend was a success! And, honestly, that’s huge to me right now.

See? Healthy upon finish line arrival.

Because, you see, I hadn’t been healthy for a long time. I was battling that little bitch known as Crohn’s disease and it just wouldn’t go away for a while. So yes, I put a lot of pressure on myself to do well in this particular race, which happens to benefit the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation. I certainly no longer expect a PR every single time I race, and I hadn’t PR’d in the half marathon in a while. So this was supposed to be my glory moment.

That didn’t happen, and that’s OK, because eventually it will. Most importantly, I’m off the Steroids now, the Crohn’s disease seems to be hibernating at least for a little while, and I’m feeling fantastic since my last Remicade treatment. That, my friends, is a success.

Fist pumping is what you're supposed to do during a race. That's what I've been told...

I’m thankful for very sweaty spin classes. I went to spinning last night and it was wonderfully therapeutic. It was one of those classes where there was a sub in for the regular teacher, and she wasn’t quite sure how to work the air conditioning. Normally I’d be all, “Lady, come on, it’s the switch on the left!” But not last night.

Last night, Dianne The Sub had a rockin’ playlist and turned he lights all the way off and I didn’t care that the AC wasn’t on because we were spinning hard and steaming up the mirrors in the studio. It felt so good. I didn’t go too heavy on the resistance because my legs are still recovering from the race. But pedaling my legs around and zoning out for 45 minutes was a great way to end the day. That and a sushi dinner, which I’m also thankful for.

I’m thankful to be running planless, at least for a little while. This morning I had a hard time getting up, but I’m glad I made it out for a 5-mile cruise through Central Park. It was pretty chilly, but I enjoyed being out there, running without pace or distance requirements.

I call this photo "Deer in Headlights." It is also irrelevant to what I'm currently writing about. I realize that.

I’m no longer training for a specific race, so for the next month or so at least, I’ll be running without a plan. If I want to run fast, I’ll do it. If I want to run long, that’s delightful. If I don’t want to run at all, something is wrong. Who am I? Seriously though, I’m really looking forward to some non-training runs where I can just be in the park, playing around, doing whatever.

I’m thankful for GChat. It’s such a wonderful little Internet function. Really strong work on that one, Google.

I’m thankful for tough love. Sometimes I need it. Sometimes, when you’re being a little brat, it helps to have a few people in your life who care about you enough to tell you to snap out of it. In other words, I’m thankful for my Uncle Glenn and my brother, Ryan. You guys are harsh, but I dig it.

This is Ryan and me at my college graduation. I was so hungover. Who decided that college graduations should take place under the hot sun? In black robes, no less? Miserable.

I’m thankful for skiing, which makes winter more bearable. Last year I only got out skiing once, and this year I’m determined to multiply that by at least two. Aim low, Alison. I grew up skiing with my family, and now I actually happen to be dating someone who also enjoys time on the slopes (though he’s a snowboarder, not a skier).


I don’t really like extreme cold, but I don’t mind bundling up if it means I get to blast down a mountain and then drink hot chocolate by a fire in a ski lodge.

Now if you happen to own a house on a ski mountain, I would love to come visit you. I’ll bring a box of wine.

I’m thankful for my best friend, Becky. We live hours and hours away from each other (she’s in Charlotte — Becky doesn’t like the cold), but lately we’ve been really good about keeping in touch and visiting each other. I enjoy that.

I’m thankful that I’ve found one running shoe that works for me. Brooks Adrenalines are wonderful. When I wear them, I feel like I’m running on tiny little clouds of joy. I tried a pair of Asics once, for my first half marathon, and my feet were ripped to shreds. I had blisters for weeks. Since I discovered the Adrenalines two years ago, I haven’t even tried on another shoe. Should I? Or stick with what works? I don’t know, but I like my shoes.

Those are my old Adrenalines on the left. Aren't they nice?

I’m thankful JetBlue doesn’t charge you to check a bag. I think that’s an excellent policy. My sad little debit card and I appreciate it.

I’m thankful my office is closed the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. That’s going to be a spectacular break and I can’t wait. That is when I will go skiing. And sleep in every day.

NOW YOU GO: What are you thankful for today?



0 Responses

  1. thankful for your blog, and a very supportive hubby. I will be racing my first half marathon next fall, and am nervous, but looking forward to it. so thanks!

  2. I definitely always took that “getting to the starting line healthy” thing for granted until NYC! I’m thankful that with PT + chiropractor + cross training, I will hopefully be back at it in 2012!

  3. I’m thankful for my shoes too! I was just thinking that exact thing this morning. Ironically, they’re Asics 🙂 If you’ve found shoes you love, I say stick with them…I’ve been through the process of trying to transition, and I learned that sticking to what you know works is always the best bet!

  4. Reading your blog has made me want to start my own blog to get me through my half marathon training. I love your thankful Thursday posts, they truly make me happy every Thursday!

    I am thankful for my husband, my lululemon running pants, and for candy cane tea from Trader Joes.

    I love your marathon interjections, yoru blog may have convinced me to do Chicago in 2012

  5. Stick with the shoe you love–I do that and I’ve been glad! hah.

    I love skiing too-ski boots are the worst (my hubby boards and always says to come join him on a board because their boots are nice and comfy. Hah)

    I can’t wait for the holiday break either!!

  6. I also am thankful for skiing! I skied almost every weekend during the winter when I was younger and I haven’t gone in a long time. But I would love to go again!

    This post was just what I needed to read today…thanks for sharing 🙂

  7. I’m also thankful for snow (I snowboard though) and more ski trips = happier year round for sure.

    I discovered Brooks through you and am obsessed. My shins magically no longer hurt and I think it’s 100% due to the shoes.

    And I’m thankful for my health and being able to walk 🙂

    We’ve emailed before but new to this comment world!

  8. I am also thankful for the upcoming ski season! I can’t wait! (Is that Wachusett you’re at in that lovely ski boot picture????)

    Also thankful that I took vacation the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Not sure if I’ll be skiing (not a fan of the crowds), but I will be sleeping in and partying like a rockstar!

    Grateful I found Brooks Adrenalines… even if I’m not wearing them right now. Boo.

    We have a lot in common. Yay! New reader, BTW… found you through Aron’s blog.

  9. I love these Thankful posts. 🙂 I am thankful that I get to see my family in one week!!

    P.S. Your blog has me seriously wanting some leg warmers. Where do you buy them? The only ones I’ve seen are at Forever 21, and they do not strike me as “running” legwarmers, haha.

    1. Thanks! I’m glad you like being all thankful with me.

      My legwarmers are also not running-specific. Mine are actually for dancers. They have a bunch available at

  10. +1,000 to gchat. i remember a brief, sad period back in 2006-2008 when AIM was no longer cool, but gchat hadn’t quite caught on yet. HOW DID I SURVIVE??

    I am also thankful for company holiday parties, especially when they provide an open bar for 6 hours. It almost makes up for my crappy salary!

  11. I know I’m supposed to be writing what I’m thankful for, but I don’t always like following the rules. So with that said – I’m bummed you are coming to New England for a whole week during the time I won’t be here (my office doesn’t close but I’m using every ounce of vacation time I have left to get out of there for the week. So yeah, I guess I’m thankful I do have the ability to take a long vacation to see my family for the holidays).

    But anyway… maybe you should come back to New England later this winter for a ski trip. I don’t live on a ski mountain (sadly enough), but I CAN bring the {spiked} hot chocolate.

  12. Your thankful Thursday posts always remind me to buck and count up the good things over the bad. So yeah… thanks for that!

    What am I thankful for today? Knowing I’ll get to meet my daughter in a mere 5 weeks, give or take a week… or two? I sure miss being able to run normally, but I’m so grateful for the chance to be a mom (and work toward a comeback marathon for next fall!)

  13. That’s awesome your office closes between Christmas and New Years, I wish my office did that as well, since most people end up taking that week + the week before Christmas off…so not a lot gets done!

    I’m thankful for the Starbucks directly outside my building…it’s just so convenient! I’m also thankful for public transportation (smelly people and delays aside), since traffic on the highway looked particularly bad this morning – I was glad my commute is almost always exactly 45 minutes each way!

  14. I run in Brooks Adrenalines, which I really like, but right now I loooooove Mizuno Wave Nirvanas. But run in what feels best on your feet. Whenever it’s time for a new shoe, I always go the store and test every style they recommend, and if I end up in the same shoe as before, great, if not, also great. Anyway, right now I’m rotating Adrenalines, Nirvanas and an old pair of Asics 2150s. The Nirvanas are my faves.

  15. I’m also thankful for my Brooks running shoes. I’ve stuck with the Ghosts through thick and thin, from the Ghosts 2, 3’s, and now 4’s. Brooks are the best! No blisters ever!
    I’m also thankful for spin classes, especially my favorite spin instructor. She’s 6 months pregnant, but still KILLS those hills, jumps, and speedwork like a beast. I’m also thankful for my boyfriend who supports me when I say I want to run my first half marathon and doesn’t even blink an eye at the crazy training hours I’ll be logging away from our relationship. Supporting boyfriends are the best!

  16. I’m thankful that my Mom and some friends are coming to visit me in NY in less than a week! Also thankful that I get to fly home and spend time with my family for Christmas this year.

    I think I may need to try Brooks running shoes…I had begun to accept the fact that getting blisters after running 7+ miles was inevitable, but it sounds like you found a pair that doesn’t cause pain. I would really enjoy not having blisters on top of blisters after long runs! (It makes me too embarrassed to get pedicures even though I love them so much, ha!)

  17. I’m thankful for free Indian food for lunch.

    I’m thankful I knocked out three miles on the treadmill after two days off. Stupid big toe blisters. HATE!

    I’m thankful I’m flying out to CA this Sunday for business. Business – and seeing friends at the same time!

    I’m thankful that I’ve got a 5K to try to PR this weekend. Blisters or no blisters, I’m tearing that sucker DOWN!

  18. Thankful for the $1 any size coffees at McDonalds. I’m poor and Starbucks robs me. I’m also thankful that a McDs is less than a block from by building.

    And I like to spin with all the lights out too – its weird when all the lights are on, right?!

  19. I remember I was really happy with the Brooks Defyance 3s, but then I got a pair of Green Silences just to try a more minimalist shoe and I loved them so much more than the Defyances. I ran Chicago in them without any shoe problems, so I’ve switched!

  20. I am thankful for you too! I love that you are still my best friend after all these years! 🙂

    I am also thankful that my brother and Jen and the twins will be coming down to Charlotte for the first time this weekend! Can’t wait to see them and celebrate Christmas and birthdays!

    Also, I want to go skiing with you guys! I haven’t been since New Years 2004 haha

  21. I’m thankful that my semester is almost over so I can be just a full-time worker, not worker and full-time student…
    I’m thankful for my awesome boyfriend who puts up with me being a huge brat 98% of the time! 🙂
    I’m thankful for having something to look forward to every day, and that thing is reading my favorite bloggers! (obvs you are one!)
    I’m thankful that tomorrow is my last day at the job that has made me miserable for 5 months, and I begin a new journey on Monday!

  22. I too and thankful for my brooks running shoes, after a year and a graveyard of unsuccessful shoes, the dyad6 has been my friend. I am thankful for good runs, hot showers afterwards, and warm blankets infront of good TV!

  23. I’m thankful that I have people in my life who will listen to me whine…AGAIN…and still love me.
    I’m thankful that after my marathon I kept on running (after a few days off of course!) which leads me to being thankful that I am healthy and happy, not chubby (or in my case fat) and a little miz! 🙂

  24. Jealous your office is closed that week! I am thankful for the ability to look decent if I somewhat try (we have our office holiday party today). I am thankful for fancy curling irons. I am thankful for my fitness classes, which are becoming somewhat less impossible. I am thankful for Phish Yoga. Yes, that is a thing. A thing I will be doing. I am thankful for people in my life telling me I am better at things than I think I am.

  25. I am thankful for gchat. It definitely gets me through the day.

    I am also thankful that I can wear a flannel shirt to work when I feel like being lazy. So I guess I am thankful for a lack of dress code at work.

  26. I’m thankful to be seeing some of my best friends this weekend for my birthday celebration.
    I’m thankful that said friends will be meeting the cute boy I’ve been dating. *insert anxious nervous face here*
    I’m thankful for said cute boy from above. (And by boy I mean man, but boy sounds cuter)

    Loved your Vegas half pics 🙂

  27. I am very thankful for very delicious breakfast sandwiches in my cafeteria! And great friends. And my family who I get to see this weekend! Congrats on a healthy race!

  28. – I am with you on being thankful for gchat. For a while it was blocked and I felt totally disconnected to life but, miracle of miracles, it’s back! I can communicate with people again! And bite my tongue while doing so to keep from laughing out load at my conversations while in the office.
    – I’m thankful that next week at this time I’ll be on a little getaway with my mom in (hopefully!) warm weather and a limited cell phone zone. I’m pumped to check out for a bit.
    -I’m thankful the weekend is almost here. Phew!

  29. I am SO thankful to be off from Dec 21- Jan 3! That is just an epic amount of time for wonderful fun things, isn’t it?? And I really need legwarmers. I always say that to myself when I see yours. SO cute. I love that you are running planless, that too, is awesome (tho I read that first as pants-less…lol, maybe I need more coffee!). Run, don’t run, do whatever you want, right?

  30. i’m thankful for our little chats on gchat. now to just arrange a little 16 handles meetup. what do you say to that? & brooklyn won’t know what hit it next year when we both pr there.

  31. If you find a wonderful shoe, I say stick with it 😀

    So glad there are so many things to be thankful for in your life – this post made me smile!!

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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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