Thankful Things Thursday: For The Good Days

I had huge plans for today.

I was going to tell you about how I’d just had three mostly great-feeling days in a row, and I was going to tell you about how I went running this morning and stuff.



Slight change of plans.

Instead, I’ll tell you about how I really did have two pretty good days! And then, so far, a not-so-hot one.

But I’ll take two good days, and I haven’t abandoned hope that today can still be stellar. It is only, like, 6 AM right now. There’s still plenty of time to spend outside the bathroom!

I wish this were the view from my bathroom. BRIAN, CAN YOU MAKE THAT HAPPEN, PLEASE?

And that is why we have Thankful Things Thursday…because it’s cool to get grateful.

I’m thankful for Tuesday. Magical, magical Tuesday. Because guess what I did on Tuesday? I went running. OMG I went running. Coach Cane asked that I give running a shot if I felt up to it. He requested four stop-free miles. If I couldn’t do it without bathroom-stopping, it wasn’t worth it. I had to feel completely up for it, and I could not “even remotely approach marathon goal pace.”

I came home after feeling mostly OK all day at work. I was excited to try a run, but I was also pretty nervous. After a few really rough days, I didn’t want to get kicked while I was down. I already have enough bruises and scrapes.

Yeah, this has turned into quite the lovely scab. Scab is such a pretty word, don't you think? SCAB.

I got into my running gear and I sat around for a little while. I wanted to make sure my stomach was as settled as possible before I left the apartment.

Finally, I got into the elevator and descended to the ground floor.

And then I came back up.

I panicked a little. I wasn’t ready.

So I came back to the apartment, re-visited the bathroom for a bit, and then tried again, this time more mentally and physically ready.

I left the building and forced myself to take deep breaths. You would have thought I was about to run a marathon, not “four really really really slow miles.” I take things seriously.

I planned to walk the whole way to the park instead of running right away. It usually helps to warm up my body and get things moving. Or whatever.

As I walked toward my happy place, I passed the Starbucks that’s a block away from my apartment — and I didn’t stop to use the bathroom.

Then I passed the second Starbucks that’s just two blocks past the first — and I didn’t stop there, either.

Yes, there are at least four Starbucks locations within a five-block radius of my home.

And then I was standing in Central Park on East Drive, ready to run. I was so freakin’ nervous. I just so badly wanted it to go well. I wanted to get through four miles without stopping, and that hadn’t happened in a really, really long time.

I started to run up toward the Reservoir. I’m not sure you can really call it “running” — more like just shuffling my feet around and grinning like a fool — but it happened.

Soon, I had completed a full lap of the Reservoir (1.6ish miles) and was starting a second loop.

I finished that loop, too. And kept going.

I was so slow, I was taking it so easily and I had the biggest, dumbest smile on my face the whole time.

I ran 4.45 miles without needing a bathroom break.

Thank. Friggin’. God.

It wasn’t fast. It wasn’t special. It certainly wasn’t the type of “huge” run I would have liked to be doing just 12 weeks out from the marathon. But it was huge for me.

As soon as I got home, I texted and GChatted everyone who would listen to The Tale of Ali’s 4-Mile Magic. I was happy. Really, really happy. I spent the rest of the night laying down and “stretching” and being as lazy as possible.

I’m thankful for Wonderful Wednesday. Yesterday wasn’t so bad, either. In fact, yesterday during the day was the best I’d felt in a while. I was even able to run in the morning! Again, Coach Cane is just asking that I get out for little miles right now without stopping. It’s not worth exhausting my body and pushing it through a 7-mile run if it means I’m going to be in the bathroom every half mile. I guess that’s not good “marathon racing strategy.”

I was able to wake up and run yesterday morning, which I’m psyched about because mornings are notoriously bad for me. My body wakes up and my stomach goes all crazy. But yesterday was another good one.

Again, I ran so slowly. But again, I got through it. I did have to make a Starbucks stop on my way to the park, but once I started running I felt pretty good. I’ve found that being into the run mentally makes such a big difference. If I think about stopping or my stomach hurting, I swear it brings it on. If I’m able to zone out and be distracted and think happy thoughts, I’m not worried about my proximity to the tennis court bathrooms.

Yesterday I powered through five miles, stop-free.

Stop what you are doing and congratulate me on my impressiveness.


I spent the rest of the day “recovering” from my big beastly run at a photo shoot. It’s costume season at Dance Spirit, so I was able to bask in my post-run glory in a sea of sparkles.

Fashion stylists hard at work prepping for the shoot...while I stand around and take pictures of them.

And then I laid on the couch all night eating awfully bland foods and watching “So You Think You Can Dance.” I’ve got this “take it easy” thing locked down.

I’m thankful for Coach Cane’s unwavering patience. I fully recognize that I am not the ideal running student. I try to be good, but my body often doesn’t cooperate and we have to shift our plans frequently. But that nice coach of mine keeps checking in and isn’t pushing me or making me feel badly for being sick. That’s cool. I like him. And I want to make him proud.

I’m thankful for the subway. Is that really true? No. I hate the subway. I hate when it’s crowded and I hate all the moronic things people do on public transportation. (If you are leaning your entire body against the pole, how am I supposed to hang on??? Please share!) But last week, I was too sick to even think about taking the subway. I was terrified of being underground and getting trapped where I couldn’t get to a bathroom. When I’m not feeling well, I’m especially irritated by smells and crowds and basically everything the MTA has to offer in the busy commuting hours.

Last week, I took cabs to and from work every single day. It was a bad one for my bank account, but it was necessary.

This week?

I took the subway without even thinking about it. And I survived. Little things like this may seem tiny, but they feel huge to me.

I’m thankful for my bike!

So much love.

It’s still so nice and shiny, even after I crashed it twice. I haven’t taken it out again since Sunday. I miss it.


I’m thankful for Tyler and his health. I hope he is healthy forever and I think about that every day. Also I just wanted to mention him here so that I can show you how cute he continues to be.

Cute feet, kid. They are much nicer than mine. Do you want to see my Marathon Training Toes?
Tyler can roll over now, which is impressive. He's so productive! But I get the impression that he doesn't really know what to do with himself once he's landed face-down. He'll figure it out.

This weekend, when I was feeling particularly miserable, spending a bit of time video chatting with Ty made me forget about the stupid stuff I was going through. I got to wave stuffed dragons in his face and be silly and relax. I think that is a stronger medication than steroids.

Probably not, though. These ‘roids are pretty wild.

I’m thankful for this improvement, even if it is only temporary. As I mentioned, I had two really good days and then I woke up at 4 AM today feeling un-awesome. My stomach was messy and I felt nauseous. I’m sure it’ll pass, but instead of continuing my running streak, I’m currently working on my couch-sitting streak.

It’ll be fine. I’m optimistic. Finally.

I’ve tapered down from the steroids slightly — down from 60 mg/day to 55 mg/day — and the side effects from the pills haven’t been too bad. I’m trying to control my rage (even Brian might agree that I’m doing a pretty good job with this this time around), I’m not too bothered by the sleeping difficulty and my face hasn’t ballooned into a full moon just yet. In due time…

I’m thankful for this puppy:


I don’t know this dog, but I do know that I happen to be dating someone who is even more obsessed with puppies than I am. I didn’t realize that was possible. But at least once a week I get a text from Brian with a picture of a dog he does not know. I’m OK with it.

Also, I hate pet stores and they make me so sad. I can’t go into one without crying and wanted to rescue all the pups from their sad crate lives.

Time to go chug some water and hydrate the heck out of this day. Woo! Optimism! Happy thoughts! No Crohn’s!

TELL ME YOUR HAPPY THANKFUL PUPPY THOUGHTS: What are you grateful for today? A special friend? Chocolate milk? Your clean apartment? Tell me every single detail of your good life.



34 Responses

  1. My husband and I LOVE puppies also.

    Just an FYI you probably know– most (almost all) puppies in puppy stores come from puppy mills, so buying from there is supporting them.

    YAY for shelter pups! =)

  2. I’m thankful that I just completed a 5 mile run- when I was only planning 3. Also thankful that I have 1 day of work left and then head off to Panama for a week of adventures. I’m also thankful for puppies, glitter, and play-doh.

  3. Congratulations on your impressiveness.

    I love So You Think Can Dance. My favorite summer show, and I’m no longer allowed in the pet store. It starts with rage (how dare they get divorced and no one takes the cat/dog) and inevitably ends in tears. The hubby refuses to take me anymore.

  4. I am thankful for the picture of the East River you posted. I was diagnosed with asthma today (I have never had trouble breathing EVER!) and my dr says it is likely related to the horrible smog/ground-level ozone in Houston. Which means I now have medical evidence i can use to lobby my husband to get us transferred out of here. I am thankful for that, as much as I am for that awesome view that would inspire me to run every morning in NYC.

  5. I am thankful that my kitten runs to greet me whenever I walk in my front door. Kittens!

    I am also thankful for So You Think You Can Dance. Last night’s episode brought me right back to some of the happiest times of my life, and I was crying the whole time from joy and nostalgia.

  6. Love your Thankful Things Thursday!! I look forward to it every week. I am thankful for college: which I am leaving for tomorrow (eek!!). I am thankful for my Mom who buys me stamps, chocolate, and clothes. I am thankful for this beautiful day!

  7. I’m thankful for having a relatively mellow week, because I’m just not at 100% and dealing with people are very low on my list. But I mean that in the nicest way possible, and I’m glad you had two really good days.

  8. I am thankful for adult dance classes to be starting back up. It’s been a good 10 years since I’ve taken any dance class and I really miss it. I am also thankful to have been introduced to your blog. Thank you for your inspiration and motivation. I hope you start having better health days and more opportunities to pass up the starbucks more often VERY soon!

  9. Ali – I am thankful that you are getting a bit better. 4.45 miles without bathroom stops is fantastic! I was starting to get worried about you since we haven’t heard from you in a couple of days!

    Anyway, I am also very thankful for my family who are amazingly supportive and understanding and loving and kind!

    Have a fantastic weekend….oh, its only Thursday. Well, have a magnificent Thursday.

    BTW, I am about a week and a half into my Entecort EC and so far so good. It hasnt really helped too much but it also hasnt had too many side effects. I can’t sleep well and have had a few headaches but that isn’t so bad considering what these drugs can do to you….so maybe I should be thankful for that as well 😉

    Take care and get better girl! Kara

  10. I`m thankful for challenging myself to do a weights/strength session and completing it feeling all well.
    I`m hoping that you will be able to continue the marathon season without any major complaints and will be ready to run all those long runs again.
    Also I`m excited to read about your bike race!

  11. Ali, great job on completely running without needing a break! That’s awesome. It’s amazing how one day you can feel so under the weather and then you’re good again!

  12. I’m thankful for trail running with my puppies. Which by puppies I mean our st. bernard/australian shephard mix and australian shephard/lab mix. But, I love trail running with them. Everyone goes home happy!

  13. I’m thankful for my friend’s adorable baby girl! I got to hang out with them last night and babies really do have a way of making you feel better. I’m also thankfrul for my dog, who can be kind of a jerk sometimes but is so funny that you just have to forgive him.

    Also, I couldn’t agree with you more re: the subway. People are completely out of control around here too. I’m thinking of starting a “don’t be a jerk” campaign, care to join?

  14. Yay! I’m glad you have been able to get a few runs under your belt. I’m sure it has done wonders for your confidence!

    I’m thankful that my doc’s office is 2 blocks from my office, so I can sneak out of here for appts without taking any time off. Also thankful that walking has allowed me to creep around parts of Lincoln Park that aren’t made for running. I walked around this “nature boardwalk” last night – amazing lil urban oasis. 🙂

  15. I am thankful for biofreeze…it helps my piriformis feel better. I’m also thankful for sweat and for my dog, cat, hamster and of course my two kids. I’m also really, really happy for you. I also respect your coach alot. I think the test of a true coach is training the student s/he has rather than the ‘ideal’ situation. I also think his advice is spot on!

  16. I’m so excited about your runs!! Yippeeee!

    I’m not very thankful today because my parents leave to go back to the UK and I won’t see them till January. So, because gratitude is good…

    I’m thankful…that January is only five months away. I’m thankful for the lovely time we had and I’m thankful for the abiding memory I will have of mum falling fully dressed into the hot tub!

  17. Puppies! I love that Brian loves puppies. I’m pretty sure my bf would just delete any puppy pictures I sent.

    So glad you were feeling well enough to run. Just take it one step at a time (<–pun intended) Enjoy your couch time! Once you're feeling like yourself again, you and the couch will not be seeing each other as often 🙂

    Happy Thursday!

  18. I was seriously getting worried about you because you hadn’t posted since Monday…I was so relieved to see this post! I totally understand those feelings of ‘YAY 5 MILES!’ because that’s how I was after my IT band injury. It is the silliest yet most amazing feeling in the world! I’m grateful for these awesome cookies I’m about to bake, and being sick so I have time to do things like read blogs and bake at 9:10am in my pajamas!

  19. I’m thankful for people like you who blog honestly about their struggles. It motivates me…I have no excuse to skip out on a workout…if you can do it, so can I. And you still do most of your runs! That is determination that I’d love just an ounce of!! (And bums me…I don’t want you to struggle!)

    I’m thankful for baby belly laughs. I watched my 11 month old nephew yesterday so my sis could run. We blew bubbles (well I blew bubbles and he popped them) and he was laughing SOOOooo hard it is impossible not to laugh with him!

    Last I’m thankful that school started for my kids. Yes it means no more lazy days where we stay in pajamas until lunch time or spend all day at the pool…but we get our routine back. Up early, productive days, girls start after school activities.

  20. I’m thankful that my boyfriend is willing to get a dog that’s more hypo-allergenic rather than the type of dog he really wants to spare me the agony of itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, etc. 🙂 Congrats on getting a few good runs in!

  21. First of all, I’m genuinely glad that you were able to complete those runs. I know how much it meant to you, and I know how mentally draining it can be to be held back from something you want so much. Hopefully your body continues to cooperate!

    I’m thankful for my job. I’m a teacher, and even though summer vacation is ending and I should be mourning the loss of my freedom, I’m actually pretty excited to get back in the classroom. I know how lucky I am to have a job that not only supports me, but that I love as well!

  22. Hi Ali! I’m honestly thankful for your blog. I’ve been reading the entire time (just needed to escape the blogging and commenting world to regroup for a while! like you guys were talking about the other day, sometimes the internet is not your friend!)…but seriously you make me giggle every single day even when you are sick and hurting you find a positive spin to life. I think you are the greatest and I love the pic of the puppy. Pancake said it’s his distant cousin, Flapjack. Hope you feel better! xo

  23. I’m thankful for my crazy dogs Rhett & Reina and that I caught my shin splints before they got bad this time! I enjoy reading your blog. I am rooting for you to feel better soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

listen to the podcast

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.
  • Post Date

related posts



Answering questions about my dream home, dream podcast guests, and dreams for the future.

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.