- October 26, 2012 by AliPlease Let Me Make Your Day (That Means A Giveaway!)
- June 15, 2012 by AliMonday. 9 AM. Get Sweaty. (And For Now: A Giveaway!)
- August 10, 2012 by AliTake My Sweat (It's A Giveaway & It's Not Gross)
- May 25, 2012 by AliDo You Want Free Sneakers? (Translation: A Giveaway!)
- July 9, 2013 by AliEmbrace The Sweat (An "I Heart Sweat" Shirt Giveaway!)
- December 18, 2014 by AliHawaii Part II: Maui!
- December 17, 2014 by AliHawaii Part I: Oahu
- December 8, 2014 by Ali“Are You Serious?!”
- November 21, 2014 by AliDon't You Forget About Me
- November 5, 2014 by Ali“This Isn’t Steamtown”: My New York City Marathon 2014 Recap
- December 2014
- November 2014
- October 2014
- September 2014
- August 2014
- July 2014
- June 2014
- May 2014
- April 2014
- March 2014
- February 2014
- January 2014
- December 2013
- November 2013
- October 2013
- September 2013
- August 2013
- July 2013
- June 2013
- May 2013
- April 2013
- March 2013
- February 2013
- January 2013
- December 2012
- November 2012
- October 2012
- September 2012
- August 2012
- July 2012
- June 2012
- May 2012
- April 2012
- March 2012
- February 2012
- January 2012
- December 2011
- November 2011
- October 2011
- September 2011
- August 2011
- July 2011
- June 2011
- May 2011
- April 2011
- March 2011
- February 2011
- January 2011
- December 2010
- November 2010
- October 2010
A Letter To The Las Vegas Half Marathon
Dear Race On The Strip,
Hello. I just wanted to shoot you a quick note to let you know how much I’m looking forward to seeing you on December 4. It’s coming up quickly! In just six weeks I’ll be tearing up your asphalt, which isn’t as dirty as it sounds — but we can talk more about that another time.
I know that for the past few weeks you’ve been thinking that I’m nothing for you to worry about. Perhaps you’ve thought, “Ali is still recovering from her marathon. She’s not going to be ready to race a half in December.”
Or, Las Vegas Half, maybe you got cocky thinking that I was going to let this Crohn’s disease flare-up bring me down. Last night, after a stressful day to wrap up a stressful three-week period at work, I just wanted to run. I didn’t want to run fast and I didn’t want to run far. I got my nice boyfriend to join me for a jaunt along the East River. I thought I’d be able to power through 3–4 miles.
The night was perfect. Cool, breezy and beautiful.
But sadly, yet again, my stomach was just not having it. My brain said go, my stomach said no, and we got into a big battle along the river. It wasn’t a pretty scene. I slogged through 3.65 miles, taking more walking breaks than running ones.
You’ve seen me getting frustrated, Las Vegas. You’ve seen me getting weaker, slower and more Steroid-faced.
Sure, I get it. You don’t want me coming out there and crushing you this winter. That’s fine.
But I’m sorry.
I simply cannot oblige.
Because this morning, I woke up and I ran. I ran 11 miles and they weren’t perfect, but they were damn good. The weather was cool, crisp and perfect. The bleachers have been put up in Central Park where, in two weeks, fans will swarm to cheer on the finishers of the New York City Marathon.
The park was packed with runners. Some tapering for their fall marathons — Marine Corps and New York City — and others getting in some final major mileage before later races, like Philadelphia. Everyone was working hard. Everyone was flying by. And I was one of those people.
Yes, I had to make a few bathroom stops. In fact, I found a lovely new bathroom by the Great Lawn that appeared just as I needed it.
I felt amazing for the first five miles. My stomach wasn’t totally calm, but it was cooperating. I forgot how much easier running feels when it’s not 90 degrees and humid. Everything today just felt right.
Everything felt especially right during mile five, when I started to see my watch light up with numbers I hadn’t seen in a long time: sub 8-minute miles. I held on for dear life.
I felt untouchable.
As I wrapped up my sixth mile, I was giddy. “I’m back!” I practically shouted in my head.
Just then, I saw a familiar face running toward me over on the Bridle Path.
Brian is planning to crush you in December, too, Las Vegas. Today was his first long training run for what will be his first half marathon, and I know he’s pumped.
We were both excited to see each other, and we decided to wrap up our respective runs together — me shooting for 10 miles, Brian looking to cover eight.
We hit up the Reservoir for two laps. We kept the pace comfortably fast. We didn’t talk much. We both had our headphones in. We just ran. We passed people and let very few people pass us.
As we returned to our starting spot, we were both sweaty, exhausted and happy.
So like I said, Las Vegas: I’m sorry. I’m sorry I am not planning to go easy on you this December. My plan is to come out there and crush you. I’m going to run hard, I’m going to run fast, and I’m going to tell you and your little friend Crohn’s disease (I do assume the two of you are working together in an attempt to beat me) to suck it.
I ended up running 11 miles today. I ran them at a pace I’m happy with. A pace I will further crush when I arrive in Nevada in December.
(Don’t get too excited about mile 11, Vegas. That was the cool down. There were puppy stops involved during mile 11.)
My confidence has been boosted. The Steroids may not be working at rapid speed, but they’ll kick in eventually. And then I’ll continue getting faster.
I will see you soon, Las Vegas. I hope you’re looking forward to it. I know I am.