More complaints (and a confession)

So, running.

Yeah, the whole reason for starting this blog 5 years ago and a topic I hardly ever write about (and most because I ever have time anymore #college). For any of you out there that are new, have followed for years, or really have no idea what this is, update: I’m studying abroad in Costa Rica this semester and actually will be returning in a little over a month. *sigh*

 

Also, I hate running.

 


Okay, I know that all runners out there have mentioned they hate running on a monthly, weekly, daily, heck even hourly basis depending on their training and level of fitness … but guys, I mean it this time. And not in the whole, “Oh I hate running!” way as I continue running my 10 mile long run and am laughing about random things with my friends like I usually do – cue memories of Sunday long run at Kennesaw, my favorite day of the week. Also, bagels. Mostly because of the bagels.

I don’t know the whole “first step is admitting you have a problem” process, but I’m there. I’ve finally admitted it to myself and needed somewhere to admit it, express it, and move on without hearing things like, “Oh whatever!” or, “You have so much time to train, just enjoy your time abroad!” or even, “Pues, todavía tiene mañana y puede descansar hoy.” Thanks family, random strangers, friends, and host-mamá.


Currently: sitting on the floor of my tiny bedroom in Guadalupe, Costa Rica in leggings and a matching running t-shirt after 35 minutes of hell and recognizing that 1) I actually enjoy running sometimes 2) I hate what I’ve let myself become and how I feel. Oh, and most importantly 3) I want to be a better version of myself.

So in a way I guess you could say I’m at rock bottom of my 8 years of running.

I’ve never taken this much off of running (think: I left my team in mid-December and since then only run 2 times a week – sometimes 3?), am bigger/chubbier/más gordita than ever (think: have played sports my entire life, am not running 6 times a week & am eating rice and beans multiple times everyday), and am finally being honest with myself.

So, now what?


For the past year or so running has been a chore. I’ve honestly hated it. I didn’t know if I would run the fall cross country season of my Junior year or college (spoiler: I did) and I’ve been hoping that study abroad would somehow miraculously change my life in every way – figuring out post-graduation plans, family & money stress, lack of a love life, problems with running, etc (spoiler: so far it hasn’t).

And here we are.

*cue another dramatic pause and look longingly into the future where I am super fit & successful & happy & all is roses and sunshine*

(Just kidding about that last part)


Running has always been something that I’ve had a love/hate relationship with. Reading my own posts on here about how motivated, excited, fast, and hopeful I used to be about running makes me sad. I suppose we change over the years, but I always thought that I would be a runner forever – meaning, as I thought then, that I would always love running and how it made my feel, etc.

Just a note to my naïve younger self: you were wrong.

I hate running.

But I also still love running *cue shock & surprise* I love where I can adventure to, my time alone to think and write (spoiler: my best blogs posts come after runs), and love myself. I don’t love myself when I’m not running, and that’s what I’ve realized.

*mic drop*


So maybe the “spoiler” was a bit premature. Studying abroad and being away from my team (heck, without a team for the first time since I was 5 – soccer, basketball, running), independence in many of my normal life decisions, my friends & family that know me as a runner, and away from running … have taught me just how much I miss it.

 


If this is my “mid-running-life crisis” then I am okay with that – I’ve always planned on getting more into cycling/road biking, and I think 42 sounds like a great age for once my knees go bad & I can actually afford a nice bike.

From here on I don’t want to say that I am going to be faster than ever before, or more fit. I’m not going to break any school records or be lighter than I was during my stress fracture (think: not eating hardly anything & exercising a lot = not healthy). My team is important and running in college is a job, I understand and respect that.

But while I’ve been away and taken time for myself for the first time, realizing that I don’t label myself as a runner when I first meet someone new, and knowing that there are times that running really is more important than other things – like when I am back at Emory this fall for my last season(s) and back to being a student-athlete.

I’m just going to be honest with myself now because I do hate running and it sucks right now to be out of shape & chubby & live a life so different than how I’ve been the past 8 years and who I’ve become.


So, just in case you missed what I’m trying to say here: I hate running. I’ve been miserable for the past year or so and so often feel like I am “forcing” myself to go to practice each day, out the door early, and feeling so guilty for not running like I know I “should.” Running is the worst thing that’s happened to me because for the first time I truly realize (by choice, even) that I don’t know how to live without it.

And that’s okay.


Onto the next run, because you know starting from now on that I’ll be strapping up my laces & pounding the hard concrete of Costa Rica a few miles more … and a lot more miles happier after that.

2016-11-04 17.03.17

*** Editor’s note: this was just my 100th post and I had no idea. Figures

Muchas aventuras (in WA!)

Something about running, something about being productive, something about school and being tired. Riiiiiiiiiiiight. 

Rather than returning to Emory for early return training for indoor track, I am still in Washington state with my family and friends. Well, mostly alone since most, if not all of my friends are back at school or working before classes begin again! It’s a weird way to live – sleeping in, staying in late, watching as much Netflix as I want, doing as many crafts as my Hobby Lobby obsession/holiday budget can permit, and fun adventures that I don’t normally have the time to do!

In a few weeks I will be off to Costa Rica for a study abroad program lasting all of the spring semester. I am looking forward to warm weather, being immersed in the Spanish language, the opportunity to make new friends and meet new Ticos (the name for Costa Ricans), as well as all else that I will learn over the next few months. As I’ve had this blog for many years and love the WordPress platform, I’ve made ANOTHER blog to document my experiences, and no worries … even thought the titles are in Spanish, all of the blogs will be in English (or at least Spanglish!). As I’ll be disappearing from this blog for some time, unless the running is increíble, more updated posts will be on Gabbythegringa.wordpress.com. :-)


Until next time … here are a few photos of my latest adventures.

  • Being a tourist in my own state! I’ve hardly spent time downtown Seattle, but the chance to spend a few hours near Pike Place, go shopping, and trying not to freeze in this super cold WA winter with my mom was a joy.
  • When you live a 5 minute walk from a small local café, why wouldn’t you go to plan your next vacation(within a vacation), answer emails, and to eat yummy pastries?!
  • Guerrilla Running Community group! I’ve always wanted to run with one of the local running clubs in Olympia, and I recently had the opportunity to! Sure it was cold, I was the youngest there, and did  I mention that it was COLD?! but it was a great opportunity that I am grateful to have had as I am missing my teammates and it’s nice motivation to get out and run.
  • Time on the couch watching Netflix and cuddling with your dog is good for the soul. Trust me on that one.

2017-01-02-15-15-302017-01-04-10-28-09img_0667-1img_0672


Until next time,

Gabby

Finally accepting my namesake

Rudy light photo.jpg

*sung to the tune of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer*


“Gabby, the one from Washington

had some really cool new lights

and if you ever saw them

you would even say they’re bright.

All of her other teammates,

used to laugh and call her names

They never let poor Rudy

choose her very own nickname.

Then one dark and cold morning

Coacher came to say:

“Rudy with your shoes so bright,

won’t you guide morning run today?”

Then all her teammates hated her

as they shouted out “Slow down!,”

Rudy the light-shoed runner,

you’ll go down in history!

*as Coacher’s favorite!*”


Merry (belated) Christmas and happy holidays to everyone!

Until next time,

Gabby

TAG! You’re it!

 

To the short(ish) and well-shoed mathematician … most of the time I have no idea what you’re talking about, but iff you weren’t around, I wouldn’t have anyone else to brag about: you speaking 4 languages, your awesome internship and how smart you are, as well as how much more fun you are after actually opening up. Thanks to (one of) my favorite chauffeurs.

20d849b1ac226759828b493a948f8932.jpg

To the ingenious quirky and quick scientist … and to that I would add, superhero in disguise? There aren’t enough cute Pinterest crafts I could make for you, funny enough poems I could write, or words to say how much you’ve impacted my life – one of the greatest examples and friends. Now I know how to make cake shaped like a brain and a full dinosaur costume out of Ikea boxes- hooray! Viel Glück.

tumblr_n3fnkuhJdw1s2wio8o4_500.gif

To the tall dark and handsome guy from church … this one is a bit awkward  (see gif below). Sure thankful for 6 months of shared Birkenstock love, getting to know your quirky sense of humor, and learning from you – pop culture and medical school and all else. Thanks, (almost) Doc.

giphy.gif

To the quietly loud teammates with funny GroupMe posts … maybe one or two conversations and now you’re graduating! Oh how 2.5 years has flown by through chanting Rudy, Jakemas festivities (also the Instagram #picturesofjake), and being there to balance out the girl’s team drama. Example A of their shenanigans:

alex

To the other underclassmen who turned into landlords and later became my captains … if you try and Venmo me while I am gone this spring for anything team-related, I won’t pay it. Or if I do it will be in colones. How could I ever forget your examples of leadership and crazy ideas – gracias.

eagles

To the most inspiring, hard working, and dedicated soccer player at Emory … you say you’re not a runner, but wandering through the streets of Cleveland and local parks on a run this summer only said more about who you are, what you stand for, and where you’re going (YAY med school). Go Eagles!

MK4DEjE.gif

To the most beloved and notable part of being at Emory … you make my day while walking through campus whenever I see you. Hopefully we can live together next year somehow, but we’ll see what RHA says. Megan? Gab? Diana? Mom? How do you feel about the greatest gift and never having to say goodbye? *hint hint*

giphy-3.gif


Sure, I’m sentimental (and this is the third or so post in a row like this – sorry), am feeling squishy and a bit overwhelmed with extra time with time off of running during  finals, and also a bit concerned about having watched all 3 seasons on Sherlock in less than a week.

giphy-2.gif


It’s always easier to leave rather than to be left. Even then, there are phone calls, text messages, social media, emails, messenger pigeons, holiday breaks, and planes & trains & automobiles. I always joke about “forcing my friendship” on other people, but sometimes that’s a bit too true. There are so many great people in my life (even if they don’t realize I’ve featured them in a blog post … maybe I was a bit to honest here so please no sharing names? Oops) who are a blessing, a friend, and a joy to know.

 

Until next time,

Gabby

 

Snapshot.

2 alarms – set 3 minutes apart

3 Ibuprofen for old people feet

1 bottle of water

3 “snoozes”

= 8:30am on a Monday and nowhere to go (until 2pm Spanish)

“How has your semester been?” “What classes are you taking?” “When are you going home?” “How’s it going?” “Did you know _____ was dating ______?”

“I’m having pet-separation anxiety.” “I can’t believe this semester has gone by so quickly!” “I have so much homework and three tests next week.” “Last night I slept for 12 hours and am still going to take a nap because I deserve it.” “I watched Netflix for 3 hours last night and have no regrets.”

 

4 classes (sort of 5)

6 days/week of practice

0 meal swipes

3 over-expensive Kaldi’s Coffee shops

= busy busy busy on campus

“What do you want to do after you graduate?” “What is your research about?” “When do you go home?” “Will you swipe me into the DUC?”

“It’s pretty much glorified coloring, but I wouldn’t tell my mentor that.” “I haven’t gone to class in 2 weeks or started studying for my test on Monday.” “Today was so nice to take a nap and study.” “The construction has been so loud they are giving us free food for not killing any of the construction workers.”

 

26 teammates

1 Coacher

4 vans to Kennesaw long run

6 days/week of practice

= college cross country 101

“How many miles do you usually run?” “Anyone going to Lull?” “How far are your races?” “Do you ever run with the guys’ team?” “Oh you compete year round?”

“That’s definitely not my race pace.” “Lifting before a workout is dumb.” “People keep stealing our foam rollers – we need to steal them back.” “It’s only 5:30pm and so dark outside, but at least we don’t have to do ancillary.”

 


Highlights of today: cheering on my teammates at Nationals, learning about a new sect of Hinduism, submitting a paper for extra credit, spending time with some of my favorite people, wearing squirrel socks, officially memorizing John Mayer’s new song, learning the word “decussation” and being able to describe it

 

Downsides of today: spilling curry into my scarf, mispronouncing every Guru’s name at the Hindu temple (which I also can’t pronounce the name of), deciding to eat ice cream when it was cold outside, thinking I could read 30 pages of a Psych textbook in one sitting, starting to pack up little things of my apartment, not having photo evidence of my conversation on Twitter with Edward Cheserek


 

When you take a rest day from running, you end up with a lot of free time at the end of the day – procrastinating folding your laundry while eating dry cereal and rocking out to Spotify ads in Spanish. #qué? Just a little peek into a day in the life of a college student (plus a lot more complaining, procrastination, and gossip). Here’s to more blogging in the future and these last 2.5 weeks of the school year!

 

Until next time,

Gabby

 

Featured in low-quality snapchat (taken while writing this):

said scarf with curry stains and laundry that’s waiting for me to fold

Back to work!

IMG_0459.JPG

 

“Change” rhymes with “see ya”

I wish I could say that things are different since the last time I posted earlier this summer … it’s still 80 degrees nearly everyday (where the heck is fall at?!), I am still in GA and living within the same 3 mile radius, still listening & dancing along to the same songs on Spotify, and still running/studying/surviving.

*sorry I’m not great at creative introductions – my creative process is a bit rusty after all this “school”/”homework”/”studying” stuff lately*

This semester has been the busiest one so far, but I guess 1/8 isn’t too bad, right? Not to mention the fact that, “No matter what happens this semester election, I’ll be in Costa Rica next spring.” More on that later (maybe), but I am so excited to be studying abroad and exploring all that Costa Rica has to offer – food, host families, research, working on my Spanish, running adventures, and all else in such a beautiful place. :-)


Since this summer though, it doesn’t seem like anything much has changed here in Atlanta, but I know I sure have:

I am now a golfer.

Surprise! I didn’t say I was a good one (or that I hit any of the balls), but having my mom for a personal coach was pretty cool. Top Golf is the way fun – definitely a bucket list item if you like golf (or even if you don’t) – its set-up is similar to bowling … but golf.

2016-08-11-22-06-10

 

14907091_10210867990406044_6140422193381706688_n14606422_10210867990046035_4609000556506491964_nI am now Paul.

Haha! For our conference XC meet we made the boys’ teams signs with their faces on (which made for funny/creepy photos like this!). Our boys and girls’ teams are running SO fast this season – excited for the last couple championship races. Go Eagles! *Go Paul!*

I’m now an aspiring neuroscientist.

Okay, so maybe this one is sort of true? The opportunity to make “brain cake” for a church Halloween party was the highlight of my college career as I’m a Neuroscience/Behavioral Biology major. Those are some pretty good looking gyri and sulci,  if I don’t say so myself.

2016-10-28-23-19-56

 

I’m now a SAAC fanatic.

SAAC = Student Athlete Advisory Committee and after the opportunity to go to a 3-day university conference as a representative of my school and sport, I am SO excited about what student-athletes can do at Emory and making sure we have a voice in athletics. *steps off pedestal*

2016-09-15-22-03-56

 

I’m now a member of the the Emory Sports Hall of Fame.

Okay, so not quite … but I am sharing the photo and spent the night with one of the inductees! The beautiful Sarah Byrd is the first and only person to have won the 3,000m steeplechase for Emory, and after hearing so many stories about her from my Coach, it was an incredible opportunity to meet her. Not to mention she is/was pregnant and still super fit! #goals (Read more here!)

2016-09-24-21-21-40

 

I am now retired.

… for the next 10 months, at least. Since I am studying abroad in the spring, this cross country is my last competitive season of junior year as I will thankfully be missing indoor and outdoor track. I will be missing my teammates, but am looking forward to exploring Costa Rica and summer training for SENIOR year. Pictured: my best friend and one of the ~speediest~ Eagles breaking my old and tired back. Here’s to hoping there are benefits for seniors in our old age though Emory Athletics. ;-)

2016-09-01-20-13-18

 

I am now a squirrel.

The better you know me, the less of a surprise this photo will be. After my roommate woke me up on my birthday wearing this onesie and singing “Happy Birthday,” Halloween seemed like the perfect day to make my transformation, haha! Please note the “I love squirrels” socks.

2016-10-29-23-07-21

 

I am now more proud, happy, and (already) nostalgic about my decision to be at Emory.

My team, as always – no matter who is on it, is my family. Not only the girls I run with everyday, but the friends, support system, church family, and faculty that I’ve had the opportunity to get to know while in Atlanta have blessed my life in so many incredible ways over the past 2 years.  It hasn’t been easy to be here, and things are far from perfect, but this is home.

14102599_10208874177865325_4565701049831189844_n


 

I’d sure like to think that I am now a bit different than even this summer. That I’ve changed in ways that: I now know how to glue on fake eyelashes, can successfully cook dinner enough to enjoy it and have leftovers for the coming week, balance my church responsibilities and schoolwork through a multi-colored and highlighted planner (with many dog-eared pages and sticky notes), as well as manage to live alone in my apartment and not set off the fire alarm (looking at you, people who set it off when I am in the shower x2). These are all adult-ish things, right? If not, I’m getting there. Here’s to plenty of “I am going to miss you!”s in the next couple months, but also plenty of, “Hi! I’ve missed you!”s. It’s been a long year here in the South. Thanks, Emory. Thanks, everyone.

 

Until next time,

Gabby

P.S: Change is and always has been one of the things that I dislike/fear the most. Fortunately, as I move forward and step into a future FULL OF IT, this quote (as cheesy as that might sound), has given me a different perspective. Being so, maybe I should stop making these changes? #lifegoeson

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”

Because we don’t know eachother

Dear stranger,


Thank you for sharing your cute green mason jar full of ice cold water – it was better than the hose, that’s for sure.

 

Thank you for dealing with all of this repetition, venting, and rambling.

 

Thank you for looking out for me and stopping at the bus stop even when I drift off and almost fall asleep in the mornings.

 

Thank you for saying good morning and good afternoon everyday.

 

Thank you for sitting next to me and sharing in my love of true crime books and exploring Georgia’s natural wonders.

 

Than you for being so willing to help – no questions asked, when I was the dripping and miserable girl asking you for water on your doorstep.

 

Thank you for smiling at me.

 

Thank you for encouraging me and asking me about my run when you saw me struggling through the last, or first, half mile at 5:45am in the dark.

 

Thank you for walking with me back to your car and sharing your water bottle – even talking with me about your past as a cyclist letting me drink the melted ice because you knew I needed to be hydrated.

 

Thank you for letting me get on the bus before you after 15 minutes of waiting at the hot and humid 90 degree bus stop.

 

Thank you for answering all my questions, disregarding my inexperience, and letting me pick your brain about how you came to work in the position you are now – I truly look up to you.

 


Sure there’s a lot of bad in the world – especially highlighted on the news and recent events. Fortunately, there’s also a lot of good – sometimes you just have to give people a chance and trust them. To the woman on her porch this afternoon who gave me water during a particularly hot run, my daily bus drivers, law enforcement officers who are involved with some of our cases, receptionists at the front desk at work, strangers on the bus, the woman walking her dog through the park (and also gave me water), the people I don’t know too well and yet they’re reading this blog post, and all the other random people that are around me each and every day …

 

thanks.

Here’s to a hitting a physical, emotional, and mental wall this week. Here also is a blog post about feeling and recognizing how thankful I am for those in my life – friends and family and strangers alike – who help me to be better day in and day out.

I really appreciate you.

 

Until next time,

Gabby