A post-hike victory lap at a place I'm inclined to call Griffith Observatory. OUaL, that sound about right? Note the kick-ass Hollywood sign in the background.

What Fall Feels Like For Me

Date: September 16, 2013 at 7:21 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 36

I felt it so strongly this weekend.

There was a chill in the air.

Everything felt crisp.

I could have worn shorts and a tank top or zebra-tiger sweatpants and a zip-up, and either way I would have been comfortable.

Yesterday, someone said to me, "Every time I see you you're wearing those pants!" YUP. That's absolutely correct.

On Sunday, someone said to me, “Every time I see you, you’re wearing those pants!” YUP. That’s absolutely correct.

It may not technically be fall yet, but I can feel it.

The rich, unmistakable colors of autumn. Isn't that poetic?

The rich, unmistakable colors of autumn. Isn’t that poetic?

While the rest of the world is fawning over finally getting to wear scarves and boots, fall means something more for me than a pumpkin spice latte (not a coffee drinker — never had one).

It means apple picking, my favorite activity.

It means extra blankets.

BABY ENVELOPE.

BABY ENVELOPE.

It definitely means cuddling. Preferably with a side of hot cider.

It means foliage!!!

Early signs of festive leaves in Vermont.

Early signs of festive leaves in Vermont.

But best of all, it means feeling healthy.

Finally feeling good again. That's me, in the middle, with "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 10 winners Amy and Fik-Shun at our shoot in L.A. this past week.

Finally feeling good again. That’s me, in the middle, with “So You Think You Can Dance” Season 10 winners Amy and Fik-Shun at our shoot in L.A. this past week. Photo courtesy of fan girl Sarah OUaL.

I realized this weekend that I now associate this time of year with bouncing back and feeling mighty fine. Nothing in the world compares to this incredible feeling I’m basking in right now.

Two falls ago, I ran my first marathon — the best day of my life.

The best day of my life.

The best day of my life.

Last fall, I was released from the hospital, came back to life and then ran my second marathon, PRing by 22 minutes.

The second-best day of my life.

The second-best day of my life.

I can’t say for sure what this fall brings, but one thing is for certain: I may have been forced to sit out the early winter, spring and summer of 2013, but I’m back in time for fall and that’s what matters. Fall has always been my favorite season. I live for stepping on crunchy leaves, even if it means splaying my running stride into the oncoming lane to land on a freshly-fallen crispy leaf.

I’m still hovering at that 92% health-wise. My stomach has good days, hours and minutes and it still has terrible ones. But I’m happy with my A- for now. I’m happy that this time of year, I’m able to leave my apartment. I sleep with the windows open, I don’t sweat quite as much walking to the subway and my hair is less frizzy.

More importantly, I feel like I’m getting a fresh start.

I felt so happy this weekend. For the first time perhaps all year, I thought optimistically about what lies ahead of me instead of harping on all the things that have gone by and that I’ve had to miss out on. It was a huge, unexpected and seemingly natural change in perspective.

It may only last a few minutes or weeks, but I’m appreciating every second of this perfect season.

Fall means a new beginning.

Fall means faster running.

A post-hike victory lap at a place I'm inclined to call Griffith Observatory. OUaL, that sound about right? Note the kick-ass Hollywood sign in the background.

A post-hike victory lap at a place I’m inclined to call Griffith Observatory. OUaL, that sound about right? Note the kick-ass Hollywood sign in the background.

Fall means dark-morning-running.

Central Park, 4:30 AM. Safe enough... (Sorry, Mom.)

Central Park, 4:30 AM. Safe enough… (Sorry, Mom.)

Fall means running, period!

Fall means the bleachers going up in Central Park for the New York City Marathon.

And, if I’m very lucky, fall means finally crossing the finish line at that marathon.

Game on, fall. Let’s see what you’ve got for me.

This concludes an entirely happy post! I can hardly believe it, either. Daaaaamn it feels good!

NOW LET’S CATCH UP AND YOU TELL ME… What are you looking forward to this fall?

Comments (36)
 
Just chillin' with my girl Cat Deeley.

The Most Valuable Professional Lessons I Have Learned

Date: September 10, 2013 at 6:23 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 52

Today marks my 6-year anniversary at Dance Spirit. I’ll always remember the day I started, because I was living in Connecticut at the time and my mom didn’t like the idea of me commuting into the city on September 10 […]

Posted in Work and tagged , -
 
At the top of the world this weekend, in more ways than one. Awwww.

The In Between

Date: September 5, 2013 at 9:17 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 55

Hi, I’ve missed youuuuuu! Really, I have. I’m here today to talk about this weird place I’m in right now — a place I’m not at all comfortable being, and not in that edgy “push yourself out of your comfort […]

 
Speaking of "magical"...

Work In Progress

Date: August 18, 2013 at 2:39 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 44

Hi! I’m happy to report that these days I’m operating at something like an 87% “normal health” rate. I wake up in the morning and my stomach says, “I’m going to make this rough on you.” But eventually, usually after […]

Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged -
 
Buy 'em now and they'll be shipped by the end of the week. Woo!

Last Chance For Sweat

Date: August 12, 2013 at 7:20 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 9

All “I Heart Sweat” shirts have been marked down. Long-sleeved shirts are now $35. Short-sleeved shirts are going for $25. Whatever’s left on the website is what I have left. If you see the size you want in the drop-down […]

Posted in Uncategorized and tagged -
 
I will never forget the first time I re-ran the entire way around the 1.57-mile Reservoir. It took me forever, or so it seemed, but I loved every painful, heavy step.

It's Not Going To Be Easy

Date: August 1, 2013 at 6:58 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 46

Returning to running after seven months of being sick and sedentary hasn’t been easy. There have been some amazing moments, absolutely. But it’s so hard. Running is hard. My body is recovering, but it’s still weak and tired — not […]

 
This photo is from 6 AM Sunday. I couldn't sleep so I walked to Central Park where I was promptly eaten for breakfast by a flock of wild mosquitos. My right leg is a bumpy, itchy mess. So pretty!

I Remember

Date: July 31, 2013 at 5:13 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 74

Last week I wrote about how when you’ve been sick for so long, you forget what it’s like to be healthy. Last week I got sparse glimpses of that healthy life I used to live. This week, though? This week […]

 
Enya.

Glimpses

Date: July 22, 2013 at 6:00 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 54

“When you’ve been sick for so long, you forget what it feels like to be healthy.” Wise words from my friend Jess, who also happens to have Crohn’s-Colitis, the disease of digestive underachievers everywhere. Back in May, when I was […]

 
Here's the old couch, dragged out to the street at night like an unwelcome savage. It now belongs to the city of NYC...or its sanitation department. I don't know how that works. But finally, this piece of nasty is gone from my life.

"I Heart Sweat" Shirt Giveaway Winners

Date: July 15, 2013 at 4:45 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 24

A [much much] longer post is on the way with all kinds of information about my life, like how sometimes after I give myself Humira shots I can’t really breathe for the rest of the day, but also happy things […]

Posted in Giveaways and tagged , -
 
My favorite people on my favorite day at my favorite place. Life doesn't get better than September 24, 2011.

Embrace The Sweat (An "I Heart Sweat" Shirt Giveaway!)

Date: July 9, 2013 at 7:57 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 453

I’m glad I got to write two ultra-happy posts in a row, because since then things have begun to deteriorate. Again. The past week has been a rough one filled with many many embarrassingly frantic bathroom runs (shout-outs to the […]