Guess who I hung out with all weekend?
So remember last weekend when I was like, “Hey everyone! Guess what?! This was the best weekend ever in my whole life!”
Well, fun little fact, this weekend was like last weekend on steroids.
Only…not on steroids. Because I’m done with those things. But you see where I was going with that, right? I was saying that this weekend was even better than last weekend.
I got to spend a solid 48 hours with my entire big crazy family. It’s been eight years since we were all together so this was clearly long overdue.
But as you know, all good stories — or blog posts — start from the beginning, and this weekend started Friday morning. Let me take you back to that time.
I ran 18 miles.
Yes, 18 glorious, beautiful, all-by-myself-in-Central-Park-except-when-Brian-rode-by-on-his-bike-and-cheered-for-me miles.
My plan was to run the first 10 miles at a 9:15 pace, the next four miles at a 9:00 pace, and the final miles at marathon goal pace (8:45s).
I know you’re sitting there wondering, “Ali, how did you do? Did it go well? Did you achieve your lofty goals?”
Well yeah. Yeah I did. I wouldn’t have called this run “glorious” and “beautiful” if I’d sucked at it.
I remember the first 10 miles going by pretty quickly. Breaking up the run into pace sections really helped 18 miles seem like, well, not 18 miles. I’m not afraid of some serious distance, but for the first 10 miles I was basically just excited to get through section numero uno so I could give the faster paces a shot.
I fueled for the first time since…February…so that was good. Now that my stomach is feeling cool again, I figure I should think about the whole “marathon day what I want to eat on the run” plan. I went with Honey Stingers Fruit Smoothie chomps or whatever they’re called, and I’m sorry I didn’t take a photo of them for #proof. But you probably know what they look like. They’re fruity and delicious and they digested wonderfully.
While we’re on the topic of digestion — which, let’s be honest, we usually are — here’s another fun fact for you: I ran all 18 miles without a single bathroom stop.
For the first time in OMG so long, this happened:
When I was Crohn’s flaring, I would attempt long runs, and eventually they’d go OK, but those first few miles were always notoriously difficult. By “difficult” I mean I was bolting for bathrooms with crazy urgency and spent more time behind a stall door than I did cruising around the Bridle Path.
But not on Friday. On Friday, I started running, and then I kept running, and then I still kept running, and then I had a little snack while I kept running, and then I stopped quickly for some water, and then there was more running, and then some more on the run snacking, and some more water fountaining, and then I ran a little faster and then I was home and I was done.
There’s not much more to be said about this run. It went really, exceptionally well, and even though I’m trying not to think too much about the marathon (No Pressure No Stress Ali!), this little skip in the park was a bit of a confidence booster.
After my run, I had just enough time to take the wimpiest ice bath ever…
…foam roll for eight seconds, pack a bag and hit the road with Mom and Dad Feller. Brian came along, too.
We road-tripped our way to Princeton, NJ, for a big ol’ family weekend.
My cousin Mathew got married, and it was the best wedding ever. Really. The best ever. And I’ve been to a lot of weddings.
I realize you don’t actually know Mathew, or the members of my extended family — or, I guess, me — so I won’t bore you with all the details about what we ate and what the table numbers looked like and what song was playing as Bridesmaid #7 walked down the aisle.
I will, however, tell you that this weekend, wedding or no wedding, run or no run, was exceptional because I was with my family. It’s cheesy, I realize that, but we’re just not together enough and I’m so glad I was feeling healthy enough to have a blast and to tear up the dance floor.
Also, the DJ played Gangnam Style. I told you it was the Best Wedding Ever.
Also, my best friend was there.
Tyler was a hit. I decided he needed to be fancy, so I bought him a small-sized tuxedo outfit.
Babies have the best lives, though, because Tyler got to be classed-up for a while, and then he got to change into pajamas.
Of course, all good parties have after parties, and we did that.
First on the bus…
…and then back at the hotel, where my dad, as always, championed his “I can drink a beer on my head, can you?” game.
All in all, an exhaustingly spectacular weekend with all of my favorite people.
Now I’ve got one day of in-office work to knock out before I’m on a 6 AM flight (gross) to L.A. until Thursday night for a quick work trip. Watch the “So You Think You Can Dance” finale Tuesday night, kids. I’ll be in the audience somewhere.
Oh, and I’m all out of mango soap. I used up the last of it Friday morning in my “I just ran 18 miles” glory.
I have a feeling that with a handful of long runs left before this little marathon, I may need to invest in some more special fruity soap.