Thankful Things Thursday: Happy Thoughts On A Rainy Day

I currently look like I got kicked, punched and then tossed underneath a rapidly flowing waterfall.

When it rains in New York City, people get aggressive. The Upper East Side was like a war zone this morning. People get all crazy with their umbrellas and just when you think you’ve found a safe opening on the sidewalk away from the pointy metal weapons — yes, weapons — sticking out from every umbrella, boom, a car speeds by, right through a puddle, and soaks you.

So that happened. And I look dang adorable because of it. Thank you, wind, for giving me a free perm today. I appreciate it a ton.

Not really. My jeans are sufficiently soaked and my hair is a wild mess and somehow even the inside of my bag is wet. But hey, it’s Thankful Things Thursday, so I’m ready to laugh off my commute and get grateful. You in?

I’m thankful for Remicade. Yesterday I spent some hours at Roosevelt Hospital getting all drugged up. Sometimes Crohn’s disease thinks it can get me worked up, but then I team up with my IV friend and with our powers combined we are…healthy? Yes.

This is my IV. I stare at it for hours.

Yesterday’s treatment went smoothly, as it usually does. I fell asleep before the drugs even started flowing into my veins. Remicade naps are the best.

I’m thankful for finding my speed. This weekend’s race was a huge confidence boost for me. Emily tells me that our average running pace was a 7:27.

More pink and green photos! I am not sick of them! I'm sorry if you are!

I’m learning not to be afraid of pushing myself, and with that I’m learning that sometimes I’ll fail and sometimes I’ll succeed. Both outcomes will make me a stronger runner. Tonight I’m running with Coach Cane’s group of hardcore runners, and I’m excited to push myself and attempt to keep up.

I’m thankful for spinning. Do I say this every week? Probably. I’m sorry. But as much as I love hitting the pavement and running my little heart out, I also love hopping on a spin bike and pedaling round and round and round and round with a really loud, techno-y soundtrack. I took Matt’s class at Crunch last night and I got some quality thinking done during class. Sometimes I zone out. Last night I thought about stuff. Good stuff. Productive stuff.

I’m thankful for my Laurens. There’s College Lauren and there’s Running Lauren, and I love them both.

That's College Lauren on the left. You may remember her live-Tweeting the Hamptons Marathon like a pro.
That's Running Lauren in the veil. I don't know who the idiot on the far right is, clowning around and throwing jazz hands all over the race course. That girl should be embarrassed.

As much as I would love for them both to commit to me for the rest of their lives, they both have these “fiance” things now. I should have been quicker about putting a ring on their fingers, but I guess I missed out, and over the Christmas break both of my Laurens got engaged to great men. I am very happy for them and I feel lucky to have them both in my life.

I’m thankful for foam rolling. I foam rolled at the gym last night and again this morning. It hurts so good.

I’m thankful I’m making progress in my Plank Challenge. That 5-minute plank is totally going to happen, and it’s going to happen soon. Two weeks ago I maxed out at a 2-minute plank. Last week I went for 2:30. Last night?

Hello, Planking Stopwatch. You're so handy.

Yes, that happened. A 3-minute plank. I’m ready to go for the full five minutes, but I need better entertainment for the occasion, like a TV show in front of my face, or perhaps a live dance show I could watch. Any volunteers?

I’m thankful I slept in this morning. It’s rare that I’m not up at some ridiculous hour during the week to run, but I took this morning off since I’m running tonight instead. I felt no guilt for staying in bed until 6:30. I slept like a rock and felt incredibly refreshed when I finally got up. I also did some ab stuff, some foam rolling and some stretching. I liked having time in the morning to do those things.

That being said, I’m thankful for my bed. It’s so soft and fluffy and comfortable. Also, I rhymed.

I’m thankful for winter sunrises. They’re so much better than summer sunrises. Proof? Sure, I have proof.

Look at that bright orange spot. Pretty rad, right?

I hit up Central Park yesterday morning for six miles at a leisurely pace. And “leisurely pace” means I am free to stop to take sunrise photos as needed. You’re welcome.

I’m thankful for the long weekend coming up. No work on Monday! Endless possibilities! Yay!

I’m thankful it’s almost time to break out the new Adrenalines.


I purchased these purple beauties recently but I haven’t worn them yet. I’m waiting for the right time. I think that time will be this weekend. I can’t wait.

I’m thankful for my supportive parents, who have always encouraged me to pursue my dreams, no matter how crazy they may be. When I was little, I told them I wanted to by a flying horse when I grew up. They didn’t tell me flying horses aren’t real, nor did they explain to me that the probability of me actually transforming into one was, in fact, unlikely. Instead, they signed me up for dance classes, gymnastics, Girl Scouts, basketball, tennis lessons and even a basket-making class, perhaps in an effort to distract me from my initial dreams.

These are my parents. My mom is very small.

Since I’ve grown up, my dreams and goals have shifted a bit. While I still think it would be awesome to be a flying horse, for now my plans are slightly more grounded — and my parents still support them. That means the world to me.

Mom, Dad, don’t worry — the horse thing still may happen. It’s just on a back burner for now. Thanks for understanding. I haven’t given up on my dreams.

I’m thankful that amidst the 10 or so weddings I have coming up in 2012 and 2013, none of them are scheduled for Saturday, November 3. Keep it that way, people. I’ve got a marathon to run the next day. Plan accordingly.

Finally, I’m thankful I’m learning to lighten up. It’s true. I may always be a little crazy, but I’m working on it, and I’m grateful there are people in my life who are happy to help me chill out.

Brian teaches me that not every single thing on my To-Do list is a mandatory, immediate must-do. It’s weird, but he seems to think that the world actually won’t end if I don’t take down my holiday directions this very minute. (Yeah, still haven’t done that though. I’m just overly festive this year I guess.)

And then there’s Emily, who, due to a healing foot injury, had to convince Lauren and me to walk parts of the 10K race this weekend. That’s something I never do. If I’m out for a race, I’m going to run hard start to finish. I’m not out for a good time, I’m out for a good sweat. If I have fun doing so, great. If not, fine. I want to push myself.


But walking for short stretches was actually good for me. I relaxed. I had fun. I chilled out. And when I ran, I ran hard. So it all balanced out.

Oh and thank you, Brightroom. As always, you capture me at my most beautiful moments.

This is the face of a girl who is having a great time.
Good God, woman. Cool it.
OK, no more. The photographer saw you. Keep on running.

And that is today’s edition of Thankful Things Thursday. Thanks for reading along. See you next time.

AND NOW TELL ME: What are you thankful for today? There has to be something. Cheer yourself up! It’s fun!



48 Responses

  1. I’m thankful my watch has been quite cooperative lately. Every morning I dread standing outside in the cold waiting for my running watch to load a satellite. But the past few mornings, it’s been so fast! And I appreciate that.

  2. Hi Ali!

    I found your blog through my friend Shannon’s blogroll at Swim, Run, Tri ( I am a new runner from NYC, halfway through the Couch to 5K program — slowly but surely making progress and loving it so far. I also have digestive issues so it’s really encouraging to see that you don’t let it stop you. Thanks for sharing and consider yourself bookmarked 🙂

    Also, a three-minute plank? Holy crap. I get to about 30 seconds before I collapse.

  3. Damn girl, 3 minute plank? Can I bounce a quarter off of your abs??
    And I am a day late, but I am thankful for: warm beds on rainy mornings, coffee (!!!), and my upcoming weekend in Philly. I plan to eat and drink a lot of good things and not think about work at all 🙂

  4. I am thankful that the girl from iCarly came on Live With Kelly just as I was 45 minutes into my elliptical sesh and I wanted to watch her interview so I ended up with 50 minutes. That is a long time for me on an elliptical 😉

  5. I read your post at the perfect time today, I sat in traffic for 4 hours today and was so frustrated. But then I remembered it was Thankful Thursday and realized how much I have to be thankful for. New running shoes, trying spin/yoga tomorrow, and only 3 months until my next half marathon!

  6. Ugh I have a wedding scheduled for Friday, November 2. In Texas. It’s my boyfriend’s friends, not mine so I can skip it and when I told him that was NYC weekend…he said, “Well, I guess we’re not going.”

    Perfect. Great list! Love the purple laces!

  7. MY NEW TRAINERS HAVE PURPLE LACES TOO AND I LOVE THEM!! I’m trying to work out if I can attach a picture for you! They are Nikes, for girls who need cushioning due to weird running positions, and I adore them. However I had to buy a new running top as I didn’t own anything purple to run in, and I like to match!

    I am also thankful for:

    – my cat coming home this morning after a night on the tiles. He is grounded.
    – January California sunshine
    – naptime for my toddler which is coming up NOW!!

  8. FYI: You ARE a hardcore runner. Shy of being some weird roadrunner type Olympian runner, 7.27 is freaky fast. Just so you know.
    But you can still be a hardcore runner and still wear pink, legwarmers pink bunny suits, and the like. You DO wear the little shorts.
    Just SOSYAKNOW. (read that aloud)

  9. In case you were wondering what the world record for planking is…

    It’s just 1 hour, 20 minutes (and seven seconds…)

    Fun postings keep them up.

  10. See, I like the large amount of jazz hand photos… i do the same with THUMBS UP pose while running. There are usually like 5, right in a row, on any given race film.

    Also, today I am thankful for reading your blog. Cheesy? Stalkerish? Maybe. But, I love that you were never a runner until a few short years ago and now you’re running sub 8min miles during 10Ks! It’s so motivating!

    And don’t give up on that flying horse gig. It just might happen.

  11. I love your top in that picture with your parents!

    Nice work on your planking. I’ve been trying to do it every night but have been failing miserably. Need to get back on it as I’m only at 1:30 right now and would also like to get up to 5 minutes eventually!

  12. I love you in those pictures – you look so happy and carefree. I never remember even seeing brightroom photographers during races – teach me your secrets! I’m thankful for making giant life changing decisions and feeling like they are 100% right. hooray!

  13. I love Thursdays for this reason. I think I may do one on my blog today.. it’s icky and rainy here too but there are always things to be thankful for =) As for the 5 minute plank entertainment, I can’t dance in front of you or give you a TV but the song “The New WorkOut Plan” by Kanye West is a little over 5 minutes long. Might help? And today I’m thankful for my new apartment I’m moving into on Sunday to be closer to school!

    xo Marie
    Chocolate & Wine

  14. Ditto on the chiropractor. He’s getting me through this latest bout of back spasms.

    If you need a live dance show, I have been known to bust out my poorly trained petite allegro while wearing ugg boots to prove my sobreity. I assure you, it is as beautiful as it sounds. Paloma ain’t got nothin’ on me.

  15. The rain this morning was crazy! I tell people that when I become Mayor of New York that I will adopt an Umbrella Circumference Law. No Umbrella can be larger than 24″. I mean seriously, people on sidewalks with biog golf umbrellas? And I am 6’3″ so a lot of umbrella ends are at the perfect height to jab me in the eye.

    So, what am I thankful for? My two little girls. Last night, after I told her it was bedtime, my 4 year old then told me to leave the family room while she watched Mickey Mouse on her DVD player. I told her, no I wouldn’t leave the family room. She thought about a second and said “OK, I am not going to look at your face then.” and took the DVD player into a corner. Have to laugh.

  16. Jealous you don’t have to work Monday!

    I love me some spin class too. I did it this morning and feel pretty awesome. Also going running tonite with some buddies.

    Also thankful after my long run this wknd I taper and then 2 wks away from my 4th marathon! 🙂

  17. I’m thankful for discount websites like RueLaLa and Living Social (is it bad I’m thankful for websites?!?) I bought a package of Core Fusion classes and a package of FlyBarre classes for a ridiculously low price! Can’t wait to try them out.

  18. I’m thankful Hubs made it to work safely this morning, and that I have such a short commute to my job later, we have snow and ice in KC!
    I’m thankful that I got (almost) all of my Christmas decorations packed up.
    I’m thankful I work the day shift today so I can finally go grocery shopping tonight. We’re running out of food!
    Oh, and I’m thankful I got motivated to run yesterday before the freezing cold weather came…because my half is coming up fast!

  19. I have been having a few awful days (like a week straight) so I am going to try to find things to be thankful for here. I am thankful I am healthy enough to try to exercise. I am thankful that I have a wonderful man to share my life with. I am thankful that there is wine for after school tonight!!!

  20. Loving the pink and green!!!! And I’m so happy for your speedy increases – I just know you can run faster! (I’m the same – I’m so scared of flaming out, and then when I finish a race I feel like I held back.)

    I’m thankful for my parents and sister coming into town this weekend. They are in the UK so I haven’t seen them since July. CANNOT WAIT!

  21. :cue warm and fuzzies:

    I’m thankful that #teamwatermeolon has taken over your blog for the past few days. Pink and green suits you.

    Also – want to come to VT with me this weekend and help me find some place to get married?? I promise to bring Celine Dion and Glee soundtracks for the drive. Just as long as you bring our favorite book for some bedtime reading.

  22. Good luck with the no-weddings the day before NYC Marathon. Two years in a row, my friends have scheduled weddings that Saturday. Fortunately, for them, I had to defer both years, so I’m with you, heed the warning friends–no weddings on November 3rd. Please and Thank you!

  23. 1) Love the Captain Planet reference!
    2) does Running Lauren know Running Zach?
    3) that’s a nice picture of just you and your parents – did you have to do any photoshopping/cropping to it??

  24. -considering I woke up twice this week and thought “TGIF!” and then realized it wasn’t Friday, I’m also thankful that I get a 3 day weekend….This also means I can run with some form of sunlight on Monday!
    -I’m thankful for internet friends who become real life friends. Introducing myself using an embarrassing moniker was worth it! woo!

  25. I am thankful for all your New York City skyline photos! I love ’em. I love the city and would like to live in New York. Right now, Cleveland has similar big city perks.
    With that, I am also thankful for Cleveland! Whether I’m downtown, in the burbs, or in the metro parks, Cleveland offers many interesting and entertaining places to run. Cleveland also has a really good Race Management company, Hermes Cleveland, that keeps me updated on all the cool running and racing haps in the city.
    I am super impressed you consider 6:30am sleeping in, and that you still have time to do ab work, stretch and foam roll. I barely have enough time to hit the shower! I know you have said in past posts where you get your leg wamers, could you toss that out for us again? I would love to try some!

  26. I am thankful that my hair is fully dry this morning! My fiancé drove me to my train in anticipation of a “snowstorm in Chicago” (we’ll see), so I had a little extra time to fully dry my hair. It’s actually straight and not everywhere and for that, I am grateful!!! 🙂

  27. I’m thankful for theme music spin classes — “All things sexy” tonight! I’m thankful my boyfriend will actually go to spin with me for all the sexy things. I’m thankful for shellac manicures. And I am thankful for a relaxing weekend. Also, the Cheesecake Factory.

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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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Yesterday, my friend Tory told me that every day after she wakes up, she thinks of 10 things for which she is grateful. Every. Single.

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