On The Road To Recovery At Marathon Goal Pace


All caps = Internet yelling = I am saying something of the utmost importance.

Yesterday was not the best day ever. Yesterday it took me two hours to get out of bed because of the whole stomach pain thing. I was quite literally doubled over and miserable.

As much as I haven’t wanted to resort to going on Prednisone (steroids) during this flare-up, yesterday I gave in. I was hoping the Remicade infusion I got last week would clear up this mess on its own, and I gave it a few days to flow through my system or do whatever it does. But by yesterday, I knew I needed to call in the big guns.

The ‘roids.

I'm not sure about the Inspector Gadget reference. I've been spending a lot of time alone in my apartment lately. Please don't judge me...

I’m kicking off this round of drugs by taking 60 milligrams a day, which is not too much (past flares usually start me at 80 mg/day, which is four pills as opposed to three) and hopefully won’t lead to brutally awful side effects.

Do you know what one mere dose of Prednisone will lead to, though?


AGAIN WITH THE CAPS. My caps lock seems to be broken. I’m so sorry.

So my Twitter stream (is that what it’s called?) went from being all “womp womp” (real words, yes) to “Life is my favorite!”

Yes. Success. Finally. So happy.

Let me tell you a bit about this run, because it has me on Cloud 9,000 (real place) today.

I went to a spin class at my gym last night. It was so boring and made me feel spoiled from all the SoulCycle I’ve been doing. I had to force myself to log in to my bank account last night to reaffirm why SoulCycle is now off limits.

And then…

I did not sleep great last night. More sweating, more 1 AM costume changes, no big deal. If that’s the worst of my problems, I can certainly deal.

I woke up at 5 AM. My first thought as I stepped out of bed was, “Hey, that didn’t hurt my knee! Could it be because I’ve been icing and foam rolling so diligently?”

As I gently pat myself on the back and made my way to the bathroom, I realized that I didn’t have that mind-numbing pain I had yesterday when I woke up.

“This is good…this is progress,” I thought to myself.

And then, miraculously, I didn’t have to spend 400 hours in the bathroom and I was out the door before 6 AM!

This photo was actually taken post-run, as I STRETCHED. Pre-run it was dark out. No photos pre-run.

Normalcy, is that you coming back?!

I set out for Central Park with no mileage plan (“six would be nice”) and certainly no pace plan. I didn’t know how my stomach would feel or how my knee or my hip or me, in general, would feel.

But once I started, I felt good. Really good. The weather was brisk (45 degrees I believe) but the park was perfect.

Hi, Bridle! It was nice spending time with you today! (Lies, I was mostly on the Reservoir.)

Could I have pushed my pace harder? Totally. But did this run feel easy the entire time? No. I want to ease back into things, and “speedwork” doesn’t count as “easing.”

I am, however, quite happy with how my pace and distance wrapped up: 7.25 miles, all hovering around my marathon goal pace (slightly under), which was definitely not the plan. It just happened.

OK, maybe I got a little too excited during that first mile. But I haven't seen all sub-9:00s in quite a long time, so yay!

I was seriously giddy when I finished this run. The best part?

No bathroom breaks.

No walk breaks.

I just can’t quit you, Steroids. I try to resist, but you take such good care of me. And now we can all be on the lookout for my Chipmunk Cheeks, which will inevitably surface in 2–3 weeks.

Central Park, thank you for starting my day the way I’ve been wanting to start my day for a long time. I am fully convinced that all is right in the world on this happy little Wednesday.

To me, you are perfect. I think that's a line from one of those little flash card things in "Love Actually," which I finally saw this year.

The next step on my grand journey is to wear actual professional clothes to the office. Since I first got sick about a month ago, I’ve been swearing by the whole “jeans and whatever shirt is semi-clean” look. I have been commuting in sneakers so as not to further aggravate the knee and hip issues, and some days I don’t even change out of the sneakers when I get to work. Heels? Who needs heels when you can cuff your jeans and be all “Working Girl?”

And just a hint: You can tuck in just about anything and people will think you look “pulled together” and not “lazy with unwashed hair and jeans that have not been washed since you bought them.”

Speaking of that, Mom can I bring my laundry home this weekend? I’ll do it myself (maybe). I should probably get some detergent running through these denims. Do people call jeans “denims?” I just did. I think it works.

So yeah, next up: real clothes. Not jeans. I mean, jeans are real and I love them, but I used to be into skirts and dresses and stuff. Remember the good ol’ days?

I even dried my hair that day. So impressive.

If you’re wondering where Brian has been lately (which I know you’re not, but I’m going to tell you anyway), here is basically what has happened between Brian and me:

  • I got a Crohn’s flare-up. It was annoying.
  • Brian ran a half marathon. He did great.
This is Brian. He ran 13.1 miles on a broken knee. Where is he now??
  • I continued to be Crohnsy. I sweat through stuff, like pajamas and sheets and entire mattresses. Brian did not mention being impressed.
  • Brian grabbed his passport and fled the country.

I’m not kidding. He left. He is currently on a 10-day Italian vacation, hitting up Rome, Venice, Florence and every other pasta-making city in that glorious country. I’d be pissed about it, since he’s over there eating 16 Gelatos while I’m here doing basically nothing, but the reason he’s all “Italian Vacation” is because he took his cute Italian grandmother there for her 80th (85th? 87th? I realize I should know this, but I’d like to continue my streak as “Girlfriend of the Year”) birthday. She had never been to Italy. So he took her.

I know, what a jerk.

To the one person who emailed me yesterday asking, “Is everything OK with you and Brian? He hasn’t been on your blog lately,” I am not sure if you were truly concerned or just a little sarcastic, but now you know the truth.

OK, to wrap this up: I know you are probably so sick of reading about my stupid stomach, and trust me, I’m sick of writing about it! I’m not completely flare-free yet, of course, but I’m hoping these drugs will continue to work strongly and I’ll be back to regular non-Crohn’s blogging very soon. Thanks for sticking with me in the meantime.

I’m heading home (my mom likes it when I call it that) to New Hampshire this weekend and am definitely looking forward to some quality family bonding time. I’ve missed those crazy llama-lovers up north!

Hi, Mom & Dad! See you soon! Don't forget to pick me up at the airport, please!

I have no question to ask today. Just a big THANK YOU for being so nice, and for all the kind Tweets and comments and offers to send Cadbury Mini Eggs. You being nice leads to me feeling better. I think that’s the scientific reasoning behind this weird disease, but I’m not sure. I’ll find out.

And finally, a word from Third Grade Ali:

Uh, "I don't mean to brag," Young Ali? I'm pretty sure you do...I'm pretty sure bragging is EXACTLY what you're meaning to do, with your jumps and turns. (I have videos of this skating performance. Pretty sure my "jumps" were actually "falls to the ground," but OK.)

Have a great day!



44 Responses

  1. So happy to hear about your run! No pain or stomach problems woo! Also super jealous to hear about Brian’s little getaway to Italy.. I need to get away but I don’t think Europe is in the budget right now. Sad day =(

    xo Marie
    Chocolate & Wine

  2. Check out 3rd grade Ali’s elaborate h in March… 3rd grade Lizzie used to have some fancy handwriting too.

    Maybe 3rd grade Ali should have a whole blog?? It’d be pretty great.

  3. YAY! for a successful run. I kind of hate running on the Bridle Path, but it looks so beautiful. I always think I’m going to break an ankle on that uneven path with all those rocks (I’m nervous saying it — don’t want to jinx myself — knocking on wood right now (or whatever my office desk is made out of).
    I love those CEP compression socks. 🙂
    Have a good trip home.
    Also, I don’t think your face gets all that puffy on the ‘roids — well, maybe it does, but it doesn’t look bad. It’s a pretty good trade off for feeling a thousand times better.

  4. Steroids rock!! They drastically reduce inflammation, so that’s probably why your knee and hip feel better too. I’m actually just about to start a pack for my hip so I can hopefully make it to Boston in 3 weeks!

  5. I love third grade Ali. She is one sassy little cookie!

    I also love grown up, happy runner Ali! So happy you got your groove back! Oh and love the pink cep compression socks. 🙂

  6. He.. he tooks his grandma on a trip top Italy? For her birthday? Someone nominate this guy for a major prize. Or, on second thought, tell him to ease up. He’s making the rest of us grandkids look really bad.

    1. Dude, I know. My grandmother emailed me two weeks ago and I haven’t written back. And he took his to Italy? Not fair. This doesn’t feel very “level playing field” to me.

  7. Happy you had a great run today! I was curious do your parents own llamas? My parents are just starting an alpaca farm and have one llama named Firefly. Not too many people have llamas/aplacas so just wondering! It is quite the cool second career for my parents.

    1. Sadly they do not own llamas, though that would be amazing. Our next door neighbors have a llama farm though, and I basically just claim their llamas as my own. I visit them often and they are nice and don’t even spit on me. Alpacas are adorable and please send me photos of Firefly. Thank you.

  8. Few things
    1) I know that sweatshirt. Pretty sure it’s yours and Brian stole it.
    2) I love third grade Ali. I want to make her my bestie.
    3) Caps locks is an important tool in life.
    4) I <3 your run.

  9. YAY! So happy for you! Take that Jan. Take that Crohn’s. Take that bathrooms. Take that hip/knee/etc.

    I think the universe is smiling on NYC today bc I had the best spin class this morning and am now like “LIFE IS THE BEST!”

  10. I’m going home this weekend too! And I’m wearing those same compression socks on my run today. We’re pretty much the same. Haha.

    I love this post – I’m glad you’re feeling better! Your positivity is infectious; I was feeling nervous about my hill workout today but I’m a little more excited about it now. Yay running! 🙂

  11. So. Happy. For. You.

    Also, I think I just bought the same socks as you. I bought them as part of my Nashville Half Marathon costume but haven’t run in them yet. Do you get warm in them?

    1. Yeah I don’t often run in them during the summer because I get overheated. But right now they’re perfect since it’s not cold enough for pants, but still a bit brisk for solo shorts. Legwarmers are also an obvious and stylish alternative. I also want to hear more about this costume you speak of, please!

  12. I’m glad you’re feeling better now! Family bonding is the best (I am “home” right now, too), but Italy sounds pretty awesome to me too 🙂

  13. Yay! So happy for you! You really deserve it! Now take it slow, don’t push it and get all psycho with the workouts!

  14. YAY! SO happy for you finally getting your good run! Good choice of socks too – I have the same ones and I swear by their magical properties (as well as their beautiful pinkness).

  15. OMG Brian is so great! I can’t believe he took his grandmother to Italy for the first time. I think I want to marry him – lol kidding, well sort of 😉 (that is something M would do too, I’m pretty sure!). Bet you miss him tons, though. So glad you had an awesome run and are heading home for family time! So close, I am 20 mins from NH border 😉

  16. I’m so happy to hear you’re feeling better and finally were able to RUN! 🙂 Love these 3rd grade Ali notes coming out. Makes me want to dig out my grade school “diary” to see what was so important back then. Happy Hump Day!

  17. What a great start to hump day! I swear I wish I could read your blog entries when I first woke up in the morning – that way I’d be twice as motivated to get out of my cozy bed and run! Although today after reading I just want to go to Italy and eat 16 different types of gelato 🙂

    1. I will go to Italy with you. Let me know when we leave. We can have a gelato eating competition. Don’t be mad if I win. We’ll still have a memorable trip.

    1. Yes, have an awesome trip home!

      I’m going home next weekend, too, because Boy is in Utah with his family. I have to admit that I tend to book it home to NJ on those occasions where he’s out of town, and pretend to be all I’M AN AWESOME DAUGHTER FOR VISITING ALL THE TIME, SEE HOW OFTEN I COME HOME AND CUDDLE UP TO YOU, MOM & DAD?


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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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