Thankful Things Thursday: The Steroids Aren’t Fun Anymore!

I really don’t want to be thankful today.

I know, that’s not normal. I freakin’ love being thankful and grateful and being all “yay to the beauty of the world!”

But today, I don’t feel normal.

I feel like, in the past 24 hours, my body has gone through some sort of Wizard of Oz: Steroid Edition excursion, and I can’t shake it. Yesterday I wrote all about how the Prednisone was giving me giggle-fests and making me do fun things like tip over naked in the bathroom and walk into oncoming traffic. Hilarious! So much fun! Drugs are the best!

Today, though, it’s full on ‘Roid Rage. I feel like I’m having a complete out-of-body experience, and as much as I keep trying to tell myself to calm down and not scream at the guy shoving his giant self onto an already over-crowded downtown train, I can’t control it. I’m frustrated. It doesn’t help that I had another sleepless, tossy-turny night, and my stomach woke me up two different times in its own fit of pissed-offedness.

However! I do proclaim myself the Queen Of Positive Thinking (Oh sorry, did I need to be officially nominated for that title? Oh well. Give it to me anyway. I’m having a crappy day.), and so I’ll jump on board my little Thankful Train, and by the end of this post I’ll be giggle-fitting again. Right?

Let’s do it!

I’m thankful for my new compression socks. My old pink ones were great, but since I’ve started feeling like I need them, rather than just “want to wear them to feel cool,” I realized they were a bit stretched out after a year of wear, tear, and wear again. I invested in new ones, and they are white, which I think is way cooler than pink.

These are my legs. Not to be confused with Shalane Flanagan's legs.

I wore them to the gym last night, and I think people thought I was lost on my way to the indoor volleyball court. But I wasn’t. It felt good to be all compressed during a delightfully fun spin class. (I’m thankful for that, too, by the way.) I wore them home from the gym, I wore them running this morning, and I’m wearing them under my jeans at the office today. Over-use? What’s that? I’ll wash them later, totally. Promise.

I’m thankful for gym friends. Last night I was reunited with my pal CJ, who I have missed dearly since I’ve been skipping out on Wednesday night spin classes in favor of running. But last night, CJ and I returned to our old routine of foam rolling, planking and spinning, and it made me temporarily forget about the Crohn’s, the steroids, the pain in my shin and knee and the current drain on my bank account. I was just happy.

And we did some solid planking.

3:30 regular plank, plus some side planks. Working up to five minutes!

Plus, I had been so consumed with SoulCycle classes lately, which are great, but I forgot how fun a regular, back-to-basics spin session can be. Matt’s class last night was a straight 50-minutes (yeah, we got bonus time!) of climbing, sprinting, sweating and grunting. There were no free weights, no crazy Zumba dance moves on the bike and no double-timed-tap-backs-with-oblique-crunches-in-between. Just spinning in the dark.

I’m thankful for Tzatziki sauce. Preferably in bulk. I imagine this is why Costco exists, no? Can someone take me there? I don’t have a membership.

Tzatziki is my latest food obsession. It’s so light and refreshing and delicious, and I am newly convinced it makes everything taste better. We served it at Michaela’s baby shower this weekend with pretzel chips, I order it at restaurants with a warm pita, and you can eat it with carrots or other vegetables of your choosing. Last night I bought a bit squeezy tub of Tzatziki sauce from Fairway, which was potentially my best investment of all time and I expect it to last between two to three days before it has been completely consumed.

I put Tzatziki on my veggie burger — instead of cheese, because I am the picture of health — and I was not at all mad when the sauce dripped off the burger and onto my vegetables.

Good food bloggers show pictures of their food. So essentially this photo should show Tzatziki sauce somewhere on the plate. Thus I am not a good food blogger. But I am a good eater.

I’m thankful for the women who unabashedly read scandalous romance novels on the subway. Sometimes, I creepily peer over at what they’re reading and I giggle at the parts about “burning loins” (like on Friends). Good for you, ladies, for not being shy and bringing that bedside reading material into the public.

I’m thankful for Central Park. I preach this daily, but it really does transport me into another world. The moment I cross over Engineers’ Gate, I feel calm.

Hi Reservoir! You are looking splendid today in your sunrisey glory!

Should I have gone running this morning, what with my slightly bum left leg? Maybe not. Did I do it anyway? Yes. Am I fully to blame if I develop an all-out injury? Yes. Now that we’ve agreed on all those things, just nod along and agree with me that Central Park is a magical place.

I’m thankful my friends are willing to double as therapists. I have never been injured, or even slightly injured, or really thrown off course at all. I tend to take pretty good care of myself and, in return, my body cooperates. Clearly that hasn’t been the case lately, which is bullshit, but I’m trying my best to roll with it.

“Trying my best to roll with it” roughly translates into “Freaking the F out, snapping at loved ones and telling Emily that she will need to physically chain me to my bed to prevent me from waking up and running in the morning, despite the pain.”

I’m lucky to have runner friends in my life who understand. Many of them have been there, and many of them know just how to deal with this touch of Crazy Completely Irrational Ali.

Every single person in this photo is a painfully fast runner. If I stand closely enough to them, their speed will osmosis itself into my legs. That is good grammar AND smart science.

So thank you, friends, for being moderately patient with me right now. I understand if you feel the need to block me on the GChatz because my excessive swearing and use of CAPS LOCK is a turn-off. But I’ll come around shortly.

I’m thankful for this piece of mail I received yesterday from my college roommate, Dee:


If a giant envelope addressed in marker doesn’t cheer you up, I truly don’t know what will. Maybe Tzatziki sauce.

I’m thankful my hands turned out OK. Judging from Young Ali art, we could have been in for some thumb trouble in the early years. This touching hand print, with the hand of my mom, my dad and Young Ali, could have been frame-worthy, but instead it is simply terrifying.

Uh, what's happening here??? Who did these tracings?

Thumbs are not supposed to curl.

I’m thankful that in just a few days, I’ll wake up to this every morning:

Did you think this was going to be a picture of Brian? I'm excited about him, too, but also water views.

I don’t think that’s a bad bedroom view.

I’m thankful I actually packed my lunch today. OK, confession, I packed about 16 lunches. But they’re all moderately healthy and I’m excited about them. Sorry, Panera, you do not get my dollars today.

I’m thankful I’m going to be an aunt soon. My sister-in-law’s pregnancy has been going really well, and after seeing her this weekend I finally got to see that “pregnancy glow” people talk about.


She totally has it. And my brother built a crib, which makes me nervous, but hopefully Baby Feller has strong bones. Though I’m sure the screws are all in tightly, right Ryan? CAN YOU PLEASE GO DOUBLE-CHECK?

There's not room for a baby in there. Stuffed animals only.

I’m thankful my modesty has taken me far in life. That’s a joke. Obviously. According to First Grade Ali Journals, I have seemingly always been a cocky little human. Example?

Translation: "I know that my things are neat."

Yeah, teacher, I KNOW my crap is good. Don’t bother telling me. I AM AWARE.

I’m thankful for Thankful Things Thursday. There’s that modesty again! An hour ago, I was a raging bitch, and I actually contemplated swinging by Sports Authority on the way to work to invest in a metal bat that I could swing at annoying people all day. Everyone was in my way this morning. Everyone was pissing me off. I felt like I had actual steam coming out of my ears, and I came really close to throwing all my clothes in the trash in a fit of “nothing fits me because I’m steroid puffy” angst. I hate that the medicine I’m on — which is supposed to be a miracle drug or something — is making me feel like a different person. I hate that I feel like I have very little control over my emotions or my body. But writing this all did exactly what I wanted: It made me feel better.

I may even smile later. I don’t know. We’ll see.

NOW YOU DO IT, TOO: Be thankful! Tell me what you’re grateful for today. I woke up thinking I wasn’t grateful for a dang thing, and now I’m all “OMG SO MUCH TO BE PSYCHED ABOUT.” Try it!



45 Responses

  1. If it makes you feel any better the uptown 6 at rush hour gives incites extreme rage in me towards other humans… And I can’t even blame steroids! But seriously people. WAIT FOR THE NEXT TRAIN!! I once had two both cram there way into the train( and into me, since I was facing the door & had come in the other side when there was actually room) and they proceeded to get into a screaming match about the fact that the girl felt that the guy was inappropriately touching her ass and he thought that she was a princess in everyones way. This entire argument was conducted with both of their faces so close to mine I could probably have touched them with my eyelash. Sooo awkward!

  2. I agree with you that Central Park is a magical place. When I moved to NYC, the park was last on my list of reasons that I moved here, but it has become the reason that I love NY and why I love living here.

    I’m thankful for my bootcamp classes and more daylight hours.

  3. I’m thankful for the new Stuff Your Pockets tank & bra from Lulu!! Why Thank You, Lulu, for allowing me to stuff my sports bra. 🙂

    Oh AND I’m thankful for BRIGHT colors!!! I will continue to dress in colors from 1992 for as long as it’s socially (or not) acceptable.

  4. Tzatziki sauce is delicious with pizza. Especially those home made pizzas you make on pita bread.

    I am thankful for Easter Weekend!

  5. I’m thankful for you Ali and the sunshine you bring to my life and others. Praying for you to be be Crohns-free one day. I admire your courage and strength to plow forward in the midst of pain and discomfort. You have a great attitude and it’s ok to not feel like your fabulous self every day, your entitled.
    Tzatziki….love it!
    Happy Easter to you 🙂

  6. I’m thankful that I’m not the only one who goes crazy on steroids – sorry! I know exactly how you feel and it really sucks. I remember talking to my doctor on the phone in the car and his last words were, “Laura, try not to go crazy, okay?” And that just put me over the edge! I started crying hysterically for a very long time!
    Then I started drinking an additional three liters of water a day and although I had to go to the bathroom quite a bit, it did help my rages. Good luck and feel better!

  7. Seriously best Wednesday workout I’ve had in a long, long time. Thanks for the plank push. You’ll get to that 5 min in no time.

  8. I am thankful for naps and Easter candy. And that I am running a race this weekend. I’m really, super thankful for that. No pressure, just fun and enjoying being back out there again.

  9. Ohhh m g tzaiki. Love. I’ve been making chicken gyros for lunch lately – just buying a rotesserie chicken and shredding it, then using flat out fold it wraps, lettuce, tomato, red onion, feta, and tzaiki. So perfect for warm weather.

  10. Seriously love your thankful thursday posts — especially whenI know you’ve had to dig especially deep to find something to be thankful for on a day when you’re not feeling well physically. You are so awesome!! Can’t say it enough my friend. 🙂

    PS I need to invest in compression socks. I keep saying it but really, it’s time. What brand do you swear by?

    1. Thanks, Jess 🙂 And please, don’t give me credit — you’re the one busting out high doses of positivity daily! I’m consistently impressed with your enthusiasm and love for life.

      As for the socks, both my pair are CEP. I’ve never tried another brand so I can’t compare, but I’m happy with mine, so I recommend them.

  11. I was in a really crappy mood until I read this post and dammit, now I’m smiling. Right now I’m thankful for my husband having a good job so I can stay home with my kids (even though this year’s spring break is the longest week of all time), thankful for my gym membership and foam roller and thankful for my 3 kids even when they drive me to drink. Heavily.

  12. I am thankful that today is my Friday! I am thankful for my new puppy, and I am thankful for my awesome husband!

    You are awesome! I know all about the injury game, if you ever wanna talk about it. I’m not near as good of a runner as you, but I know what it’s like to be sidelined! Keep your head up and use it as an opportunity to get stronger! You’ll be back at it before you know it!!!

  13. I am thankful that someone else in the world wears their compression socks a little longer than necessary.

    I am thankful that my calves are starting to loosen up. (Will I hit my goal of a pain free mile on Sunday??)

    I am thankful that my dogs are finally on a bathroom schedule and i haven’t had to clean up dog pee in 2 weeks!

    I am thankful for cheez-its. (Not cheese nips, they suck.)

  14. Do you have a Trader Joes near you? They have some AWESOME tzatziki. Looks like 1st grade Ali loved Caps Lock too when you thought your THINGS WERE NET.

    1. SAME HERE!

      I’m thankful Ali Today uses caps lock. I love caps lock and appreciate it when people use it in their everyday writing. It makes me feel happy and energetic reading it. EVEN IF IT SOUNDS LIKE YELLING. I just find it hilarious.

  15. Yeahhh I think my hot pink CEP socks are way stretched out, too. The white ones do look cool but I know I would get them so dirty if I ran in them! I actually think I might get a pair of calf sleeves next time instead…they have to be easier to pull on than the full socks, right??

    Lolz, when I was in NY in Feb. I met a friend who works at Cosmo for coffee and she gave me a free copy as a souvenir. I actually hate Cosmo but I flipped through it on the subway trying to be as discreet as possible, haha.

  16. I’m thankful you made me giggle a little by referencing one of my favorite Friends episodes – the one where Rachel reads porn and Joey finds out.

    “Where are you going? The vicar won’t be back for hours.”

    “Joey, where did you learn that word?”

    “You read porn!”

  17. I am thankful that my Yasso 800’s were surprisingly enjoyable yesterday! I am thankful it is almost the weekend; I am thankful that I live in NYC; and I am thankful for your blog!

  18. I never comment on blogs, but I find myself laughing out loud at young Ali and today was no exception. Thanks for the laugh! I’m glad too that your thumb turned out okay! I’m thankful I no longer have a lazy eye. I did growing up, but my parents made me wear a patch for years (yes, like a pirate). I hated it, but now I’m happy my eye isn’t googly. I think my life would have turned out differently if it was!

  19. I am thankful that I have tomorrow off!! I am thankful that I get to see my nieces in nephew this weekend AND at the beach. I am thankful that I have a job, even though there are 100,000 other things that I would rather be doing than working right now. I am thankful that I have great running and workout friends because they make all of the sweat so much better!

  20. While I am not thankful that you posted that extremely unflattering (but fun!) picture, I am thankful that you came to my lovely birthday party, and didn’t judge me when I exclaimed (for the 3rd time) that I was taking more shots. I am thankful that you are getting better soon, and we can run and drink and dance and eat fro yo more often. Preferably every day, since you’ll be exactly x-town from my apt.

  21. Once your good mood from “thankful things” wears off, I have another idea to let out the rage. Meet me at the 6 train at 8:35am tomorrow. I’ll get the girl with 8 bags and 2 suitcases, (you know, the one that refuses to step 2 inches away from the doors), and you jump on the backs of the people who swipe their obviously expired cards 47 times.

  22. Go to Mama Gyro on lex between 77th and 78th and get their Tzatziki. It’s eat-with-a-spoon-good and I am not embarassed to say I eat it as if its regular greek yogurt! You will thank me later!!!

  23. I thought of you yesterday when I posted on facebook. After posting how much Crohn’s sucks (as I’m having a flare as well). I then posted this….I’m thankful that my disease is mild…I’m thankful that this is my first flare in almost 4 years…I’m thankful to have a job where I can (and do) work from home and I’m thankful to have the rest of this week off! I’m trying entocort for this flare – supposed to not have so many bad side effects as prednisone! I just hope it works! 🙂 Feel better soon….this too shall pass!

  24. Blah! I’m a bitch, too, but I don’t have the excuse of ‘roid rage. Just good, ole fashioned, “I haven’t run in so long and it’s making me MURDEROUSSSS!” rage. Thanks for your email yday. It cheered me up. 🙂
    I agree that Tzatziki is delightful, but unfortunately the garlic does not do nice things to me, so I have to abstain from eating it. Sadz.
    I hope you are feeling better soon! Also, reply to my email so we can actually hang out for once. 🙂 Mmkay thx.

  25. Ali,

    I’m thankful that you remind me to be thankful 🙂 I hope you feel better soon; I’m sorry that the steroids are wreaking havoc on your emotionals. Feel better! If you have a moment I would love the name of the brand of your compression socks.


    1. Thank you 🙂 The compression socks I wear are CEP. I’ve never tried another brand, but I really like these ones!

  26. Your future bedroom view is awesome. I wish my bedroom view would be close to yours, but instead, I am looking to that ugly building right next to my. Not cool.
    Tzatziki is really yummie. And so is all that other Greek food.
    I am thankful for some free compression socks I am getting. Free running stuff is the best!

  27. I literally laughed out loud at the curly thumb. thank you. (And, for the record, I’m glad your thumb isn’t actually curly – I would have felt really bad about my laughing if it was….) I’m sorry for the side effects of the medicine, but at least we know its just the medicine and not devils taking over?!?! See! Something else to be thankful for!

    I’m thankful that tonight I get to fly home to be with my family this weekend. All I care about at the moment.

  28. 3:30 plank? You rock.
    Hahaha, I love that thumb.

    I’m thankful that it’s Thursday and almost Friday and almost Easter weekend with my family.

    I’m also thankful that I am having dinner with my fiance and soon to be sister-in-law and her husband tonight at a place I have been dying to try and it serves fried pickles. YUM.

  29. Are you dealing with sharp and pointy hip pain or dull and annoying hip pain. I’ve now been blessed with the dull annoying back-wrap-around-to-the piriformis butt/back pain and it is NOT FUN. Get better!

    1. The hip pain was dull, never sharp, but it’s actually not really hip pain anymore. We’ve moved down to the knee and shin now! Take good care of yourself!

      1. Good times- I had tibial tendonitis (yay shin pain) and am STILL dealing with it, and IT band stuff that luckily went away finally. Hope it goes away for you! Its so annoying! I want to be training with my team, but I’m stuck in Novice I mode for now- aren’t injuries just a joy?

  30. hmmmm brussels sprouts and tzatziki! yum! I’m thankful that my weird foot/tendon pain is going away and I no longer feel like I’m stepping on a knife when I walk. I’m thankful that I can run a really awesome 5k next weekend. I’m thankful that I have a job that’s cool with me taking a day off to go drink beer and cheer on the Boston Marathon runners. Yay thankful Thursday!

  31. Your thumb is hilarious! I am not thankful for alcohol. I am thankful for my Kindle, taxis, my sister-in-law and brother, somehow being a slightly faster runner and upcoming races.

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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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