A Lighter Look At Life Lately

Date: January 25, 2017 at 9:15 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 27

I started writing this post by laying into all the harshness, nastiness, and all-around terribleness of the internet lately. Beyond just the political climate — can I get an ugh? — the internet feels extra harsh lately. But then I realized, hey! It’s not just the internet! It’s everywhere!

I wish I could embrace a total digital detox for a few days, but with my job, that’s just not feasible. So I’m attempting to at least somewhat filter what I consume so I can breathe a little easier, if only for a little bit. Beyond watching the news and reading about the news and trying to keep up with the madness, here’s what I’ve been up to lately…

On Saturday afternoons, we take Ellie to different dog parks in the area! Sometimes our friends come, too! And then we go to Rockland Bakery for fresh bread and stuff! (Ellie was asleep on my lap so she missed the quality photo opp.)

FEELING: Better than a month ago, that’s for sure! The Stelara is working, I have no doubt. I’m still going strong on my dairy-free quest, which seems to be helping, but I’m definitely not totally in the clear. I’ve had some rough mornings lately, and I get frustrated when I eat something one day and feel fine, then eat the same exact thing the next day and it sends me straight for the bathroom. I am a constant science experiment. (More about the dairy-free month next week. It’s been way easier than I expected.)

I’m looking forward to the day I feel normal, though I’m also at the point where I’m like, “Is this my normal?” Do I, even when I’m at my best, still feel this crappy in the mornings? Mornings are always my toughest part of the day, but I don’t really remember just how trying they’re supposed to be. TBD!

SNOW DAY!!!

WRITING: All the usual hard-hitting, life-changing stuff, like this piece for Allure on “what some women are really thinking about during sex.” I was happy with how this piece for Women’s Health turned out (these women are inspiring, and I love that their “transformations” weren’t just about losing weight, but also about getting stronger and being happier), and I liked writing this piece for Shape on how Crohn’s disease has made me appreciate running (and life in general).

The Allure piece was LOL-worthy enough to earn a hot take on The View yesterday. Such fame. Wow. (Right before they brought on former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power. Smooth transition. Very similar.)

RUNNING: I’ve been running! I’ve been getting out around three times per week, which feels so good. It’s nice to not have any pressure to run — no races! no training plans! no goals! — but last week, as I was finishing a run and rounding the final turn toward home, I felt like pushing it. I picked up the pace for just a few seconds, and it felt so good. I stopped and was gasping for air, and I felt so happy. I haven’t had much desire to push it with regards to mileage and am really just running for exercise and fun and my general wellbeing, but dang, it felt nice to try and go fast!

My outings aren’t all that special. I stick to the waterfront where I’m most familiar, and I still always make that first bathroom stop .4 miles away at the ferry terminal. I know it’ll take a while to regain the fitness I lost since I was running regularly back in August (which was when I stopped running), but I’m in no rush. I have noticed that I’ve been taking fewer walk breaks lately, so it’s coming!

When I am healthy, I will get to run with Ellie more! (Right now she doesn’t love the idea of being dragged into public restrooms mid-run…)

I also do 10 push-ups every night, so I’m pretty inspiring. Don’t be intimidated. I make Brian do them with me, and he always does more than 10 because he’s so hardcore, but then Ellie will start licking our faces and going nuts, so…that’s usually how that “workout session” ends.

TRYING: A new spin studio tomorrow! I was out for a run a few weeks ago and desperately needed a bathroom. I was darting around an apartment complex in “uptown” Hoboken when I spotted a barre studio and a spin studio! Who knew?! (Everyone in the area but me, probably.) I used the bathroom at the spin studio, hooray, and picked up a class schedule on my way out. I’m taking my first class there tomorrow! I’ve been saying I’ll explore the NJ fitness scene since we moved here almost a year ago and now, look, I’m finally doing it!

COOKING: Every damn day. I’m still going strong with my cooking! (More about this next week, too.) I generally do an oatmeal bake for breakfast (cook once, eat all week!), avocado toast with sunny-side-up eggs for lunch (if you follow me on Instagram, you knew that already…), and then something simple for dinner, like fish and veggies and usually some variation on a sweet potato. I love cooking, but holy shit, the dishes. And the grocery shopping. I feel like all I do is grocery shop and do dishes. Every single week.

This is chicken curry and I MADE IT!!!

SLEEPING: Terribly. I started relying pretty heavily on Ambien while I was flaring because otherwise I was up all night and was constantly exhausted. But you’re not really supposed to take it every night, so I’ve been trying to go some nights without. On the non-Ambien nights, I really struggle. I can fall asleep, but I toss and turn all night, I can’t get comfortable, I’m restless, and then I wake up exhausted in the morning. I don’t want to be addicted to a sleep aid, but I need to remedy this sleep situation ASAP. I have new sheets and a new blanket, and I’ve bought a bunch of different pillows to test out. What’s my problem? (Sad face emoji.)

It’s also worth noting that the reason I’ve been trying to do more nights without Ambien is because I had a little episode the other night. I went to bed before Brian, and when he came to bed, I “woke up” and started talking. Like weird talking, nonstop, for 20 minutes straight. I was telling crazy stories (and at one point yelled at Hillary Clinton to put her tray table up for takeoff?) and being super weird, and so…yeah. Should probably lay off the sleepytime drugs.

SELF PORTRAIT.

PLANNING: A trip to Utah with my friend Michael next month! I haven’t been to Utah since 2010, when I went on a work trip, so I’m excited to spend a few days with her and her family in a beautiful place.

And planning my podcast! Coming next month, unless I screw something up between now and then! I have a ton of guests in the pipeline — some runners, some non-runners, always people with something good to say — but if you have suggestions or someone you’re dying to hear from, let me know!

FIRST GUESTS: ELLIE AND HANK.

MISSING: Central Park. Yeah. I miss running in Central Park and walking Ellie in Central Park and generally being near Central Park. I love the waterfront out here, but once my stomach is a little more steady, I’m looking forward to popping over to the park for some runs.

WHAT’S NEW WITH YOU? What should I cook next?! How do I sleep better?! Do you want to see more pictures of Ellie?

Comments (27)
 

VICTORY

Date: January 18, 2017 at 1:50 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 28

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Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged , -
 

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Date: January 9, 2017 at 6:28 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 19

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Dear 2017...

Date: January 4, 2017 at 12:19 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 30

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Date: December 30, 2016 at 9:38 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 13

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Date: December 28, 2016 at 10:11 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 39

I initially wrote this post last week, sitting on the couch with an alcohol swab in one hand and a syringe filled with Stelara in the other. I’d had a few tough days in a row — both with my […]

Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged , -
 

A Quick Christmas With The Cristianos

Date: December 27, 2016 at 11:14 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 8

Happy Day After the Day After Christmas! Ellie and I are settled back at home in New Jersey after our annual whirlwind Tour de New England, while Brian is off on his next leg off the trip. Our quick holiday […]

Posted in Holidays, Travel and tagged , , , -
 

What Your Friends With Crohn's Disease & Ulcerative Colitis Want You To Know

Date: December 12, 2016 at 9:42 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 10

Hello from the other side of what was a crappy — ugh, partial pun — week last week. I had every intention of sharing all kinds of posts in honor of Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Week, but instead I was […]

 

A Plea From A Girl With Crohn's: Please Let Me Use Your Bathroom

Date: December 2, 2016 at 11:18 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 36

This past Sunday, I woke up feeling determined. I was going to go to a spin class! Other than the marathon and a Thanksgiving Turkey Trot, I haven’t been up for much in the fitness department. Running and other high-impact […]

 

Crohn's & Colitis Awareness Week

Date: December 1, 2016 at 12:00 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 40

Today kicks off Crohn’s & Colitis Awareness Week. I wrote this post last year and am republishing and updating it now to give a little background about my history with Crohn’s disease.  If you’re new here, hi! I’m Ali, and […]