Tag Archives: Running

So I’m Running A Marathon

I haven’t always loved running. To be completely frank, I used to dread the thought of a running, but I think it’d be safe to say that I’ve fallen in love with lacing up my running shoes and escaping for an hour (or two).  Last March, I ran my first half marathon with my Mom and became instantly hooked to races. Not only do I love running races because I’m side by side (commiserating) with thousands of other runners, but because the electricity of the crowds really gets me going. My roommates, however, will say my favorite part is the medal at the end – I guess I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love the bling at the end, too. Since that first half, I’ve run two more half marathons and four other smaller races.

As part of my 2016 New Year’s Resolutions, I made it my goal to qualify for the 2017 NYC Marathon via the 9+1 program. This program is a great way for NYRR Members to qualify for the race because it not only promotes the smaller NYRR races (9 races), but also encourages people to give back to the running community by volunteering (+1). With this goal in my mind, I knew that 2016 was all about getting into optimum marathon shape and staying injury-free. I had no intentions of running a marathon this year, but when one of my closest childhood friends texts me asking if I wanted to run the Marine Corps Marathon, I had to say “YES”.

Part of the reason I immediately said “YES” to running this marathon was due in part to the fact both my parents ran the Marine Corps Marathon 15 years ago. My parents started training for the 2001 MCM with a group of their close friend and eight year-old Meg would bike alongside them on their long runs, haul water, and cheer them from the sidewalk. This really sparked an insatiable passion for the sport at an early age. It would be an understatement to say that I’m so excited to make a “return” to the MCM and run in my parents footsteps. 

2016 is all about pushing my limits and running the Marine Corps Marathon is the perfect challenge.  Here’s to running my first 26.2, crushing my goals, and many ooh-rahs along the way.

Running is…

I’ve had to learn how to walk  three times in my lifetime. When I was a toddler, when I tore my ACL, and once again when I ripped my meniscus off the bone. The routine is all the same – the weakness inhabiting your legs is debilitating – it’s a depressing and bitter feeling not being able to walk around and perform duties that would are normally  a walk in the park (pun intended).

Though I, thankfully, have not had to learn to walk a fourth time, I am learning to run again. In late November, I threw out my back during of post-season strength testing.  The pain was unimaginable – nothing like I had ever experienced before. I couldn’t sit, stand, sleep, you name it – without pain. The diagnosis unclear, I began physical therapy to strengthen my core, and was banned from all other workouts. A series of x-rays, scans, and doctors appointments later, I was diagnosed with sacralization of my L5-S1 joint and arthritis among other things. This process, unlike the knee, has a timeline of its own. There have been bad days and there have been better days, however, on March 28th I had a great day. I was able to run again.

Running, though it seems to be the bane of my existence during preseason, is simply one of those activities that releases all the tension from my life. When I run, I feel like I’m on cloud nine, and March 28th was no different. Though the Alter-G provided a different experience than my normal runs along the Hudson, I was enthralled to say the least, that I was able to run again (granted at 80% body weight and at 8MPH).

I don’t know about you, but running is my drug. Running is truly an escape from the harsh realities of the world. Running is how I decompress. the pounding of the pavement beneath my feet, the beating of the music ringing throughout my ear drums, the salty sweat dripping across my brow. This is why I love running so much and why it is such a big deal to me to learn to walk and run again.

Check out this video of me running again in the Alter-G.



Why Yes I Do Go to School

¡Hola Amigos!

I hope your day is going as awesome as mine. I’m currently finishing up my last class of the day, Blogging Spain. Yes, I know that it does not sound like a real class, but I promise you that it’s actually pretty hard and not just about blogging about my experience in Spain (though that’d be a pretty awesome class). I’ve received a lot of feedback and questions (mostly from my parents and their friends) about going to school, so I felt it was appropriate to finally describe a normal day in the life of Meg in Madrid.

Our cute little yellow school house

Our cute little yellow school house

Mondays and Wednesdays I usually wake up around 9:30 and am out the door by 10 to get to my 11AM class. On Tuesday and Thursdays I’m up around 7:45 for my 9:30 class – honestly it’s nothing compared to my NY sleeping schedule. My only complaint thus far about living in Sol would have to be the long commute to school – 10 minute walk to the Sol Metro, 2 trains, and a 10-15 minute walk from Santiago Bernabeu to our Calle Segre campus takes about an hour total depending on if the trains are on time or not.

I was incredibly lucky that I got my first pick with classes and scheduled everything back to back so I wouldn’t have to wait around campus for awkward periods of time. On M/W I have ‘Cultural History of Spain’ and ‘Blogging Spain’ and on T/TH I am enrolled in ‘Critical Approaches’ and ‘Spanish for Commerce’. Though I cannot say I’m completely infatuated with my classes as I was with my Sports Management classes in NY, I am enjoying the selection (even if they are completely in Spanish and I’m lost in translation about 70% of the time).

Check Out the beautiful moon

Check Out the beautiful moon

After class for two and a half hours a day, I head back to our apartment in Sol, grab some food, sit down on our lovely couches (pictures coming soon) and pretend to do homework. I usually proceed to get cabin fever and head out for a run.

Sidetracking a bit, but tonight I went for one of the most amazing runs of my life – though it was a brisk 42 degrees, it felt like it was a cool and comfortable 65. I found my heart rate monitor and watch, ran for a good 45 minutes down around Puerta del Sol, up Gran Vía towards school. I began around 9 PM, just when the moon balanced perfectly between the buildings and sat in the mystic midnight black sky. I desperately wish I had ran back and grabbed my camera but my legs and body were exhausted from a long day and I plopped back down on the couch – I know my iPhone won’t do any justice to the beauty in the Madrid sky.

Another beautiful run

Another beautiful run

Since settling into our apartment, the four of us have been trying to cook more at home, so around 8-9 we usually grab dinner and try and start back on our homework. This past week our meals consisted of a lot of pasta, bread and cheese (channeling our inner European goddesses) but today we swore to go the grocery store and get some chicken and healthier food for this upcoming week.

The End of Gran Vía

The End of Gran Vía

After a few hours comprised of a healthy dose of Facebook and homework, I jump into the shower and try to get to bed by a reasonable hour.

Hope that provided a comprehensive overview of a day in the life, until next time!IMG_7223


Running Through Life, Running Through Madrid

It’s a beautiful Sunday morning, a rather warm 50 something degrees compared to the frigid temperatures we’ve embraced the past two weeks – and quite honestly the perfect time for a run. I’m not a “runner” by any means – after my knee surgeries running became more of a punishment than a pleasurable thing to do, but I’m a “runner” by pure definition of the word. Since being in Madrid, however, I’ve rekindled my love with the blisters under my toenails, the cold air piercing my lungs, and the striking of my feet on the pavement ehhh I mean cobblestones. When you’re not in the mood to run it’s absolutely awful, but when the itch to lace up your shoes hits you, it’s one of the best feelings in the world, and that’s what’s happened since being here. I’m a competitor and running has provided me the opportunity to take out my most competitive feelings out on myself. It’s not that I love winning, I just hate to lose, so what better way to fuel my fire than with some self competition, right?

All smiles during my runs

All smiles during my runs

I feel this post veering in the wrong direction, but running has become my sanctuary since coming here and feel it was of the utmost importance to share it with all of you. With the lack of female soccer teams here (if anybody knows of one, lemme know!), I really needed something here to keep my fitness up for the 2013 season and running has done just that. There are numerous routes, the parks are plentiful and best of all, it’s a perfect outlet for my stress. Running has once again become my friend. All it took was one beautiful long run from our cute apartment down Gran Vía, around the city center and back again to make me fall in love.

Running through  any city provides an entirely new perspective on the surroundings, the people, and the way of life. I love walking around with los chupitos, don’t get me wrong, but running Madrid has just made me love it here even more. I might never want to leave!

Maybe it’s just me, but the blaring of my “Danza Kuduro” into headphones as I sprint up the hill (hill might be an understatement) leading to our apartment just soothes my soul and allows me to take in everything around me (I mostly just take in the burning in my hamstrings, but you get the point). The sights, the sounds, and the oh so delicious smells invade my senses as I run up Calle Mayor, through la plaza más antigua de Madrid (the oldest plaza in Madrid), and around the corner into el barrio La Latina. The extravagant street performers, the adorably dressed señoras, and tourists in Puerta del Sol stare me and my sweat stained NYU soccer tee down, as if I’m a more unusual sight than the headless business man.

Madrid I’m already in love with you enough as it is, but thank you for making me lace up my shoes again, letting me fall back in love with running, and allowing me to explore your beautiful city.

¡sta luego!

Quote of the day: “Traveler, there are no roads. Roads are made by walking” ~ Spanish Proverb