February in Review

Oh, hey.

So, it’s been a while and I know there are some much bigger things I owe you updates on right now. That’s coming, I promise, but I’ve pushed it back to next week. Putting my Guatemala recap(s) together is proving to be an intensive task with all the writing, editing and photo uploading to be done, so I’m saving it for this weekend when I have a little more time. I’ve been taking this week to just relax and let myself readjust to “real life”. That may sound silly, needing an entire week to readjust from a trip that was only 10 days, but anyone who has ever had an immersive week-long vacation knows the struggle is real. This week I’ve just tried to take life one day at a time and free myself from any additional things I feel “obligated” to do, namely, blogging. But getting in a month-in-review post sounded much easier, plus, I otherwise wouldn’t have time to post this for another couple weeks and it seems a little silly to post a February in Review post halfway through March.

I’m not sure what even to write about because most of February was defined by one week. I honestly can barely remember anything else that happened in the weeks preceding my Guatemala trip: it’s all kind of a blur of running and feeling the tentacles of cabin fever and travel-planning stress squeeze me ever so tighter each day until I finally got on a plane to Guatemala before they crushed the life out of me.

So, since I don’t really have much else to talk about and Guate will get its own in-depth coverage, I’m going to do something different for this monthly recap and focus instead on what’s ahead:

March!

 

Under different circumstances, I think March would be one of my least favorite months: Spring is not quite here yet and the weather is dreary and gray and kind of gross, and it’s long, and there isn’t a lot going on.

But March is one of my favorite months of the year because it’s my birthday month! Next Saturday, March 12, I turn 29 years old. 29! I can’t believe I’m only a few hundred days away from being 30. I still remember turning 20. Kind of. I’m not much of a partier and the bar scene is not my thing, plus we live in a different state than our families and our circle of friends is not huge by any means, so I tend to keep birthdays pretty low-key. I definitely want to go out to eat at a the charming little Italian restaurant in our neighborhood that is almost impossible to get into if you don’t have reservations, and maybe also see a movie or go out for some beers or something, but nothing fancy. Birthday cake is a must. All the birthday cake.

I’ll also be running my 10th half marathon in March! Wow, 10 half marathons! I’m not one to keep count of my races (except marathons) so I didn’t realize until recently that I’m about to hit double digits.

I’m excited and also a little nervous. I haven’t raced a half marathon in 4 months and many training weeks, so on the one hand, I’m pretty pumped to be back on a starting line in a couple weeks because I’ve really missed racing.

But on the other hand, I also am not really sure what to expect of myself. I know what pace range I *should* be able to run in, but it’s not as easy to know if my training has actually gotten me there yet or if it will come through for me on race day. I’ve been working really hard and making big gains in my running fitness, but I’ve also taken a little time off and now have to get back into a routine, so it’s hard to know where I stand right now. But that’s life, no? You just go out there and race the best you can and whatever outcome is meant to be will happen.

Another thing that has me a little nervous is that because this is a pretty hilly race, it will be my first real prediction of how well I can handle the Pittsburgh Marathon hills. So if it doesn’t go well, then…uh…I have a lot more to be nervous about.

As usual with races, a lot will just depend on whatever March 20 throws at me. If it’s a great day then I may try to push myself and race it; if not, I’ll still run to the best of my abilities but I’ll focus more on getting acquainted with racing on hills. But in the end, I’m trying to be positive and I can say that I’m a lot more excited than nervous. I really have missed racing, and while I can’t say for sure whether or not I’ll be pleased with the outcome, I really think I’m going to have fun out there. I say that not only because I’m excited to race but because lately, my focus has been shifting and I’m really starting to appreciate the training and running for its own sake instead of as a means to an end.

I felt like a new chapter opened up for me once I went to Guatemala, and there are some changes on the horizon this month. Nothing huge or significant, but this blog is where the bulk of those changes will take place. I’ve done a lot of thinking lately about my priorities and outlook on life, and I think it’s time for a little bit of a shift in focus. There’s a big world out there, full of possibilities and new things to explore that I either hadn’t noticed or pretended I didn’t, and I want to focus more on those things. I’m not making any big (or really any) life changes, but I do have a desire to get out of my own head more, take better care of myself and my surroundings, pay more attention to the day I’m in, and rekindle my curiosity about the people and the world around me.

I’ll still pop in with posts about running and updates on how my training is going, but expect this blog to become a bit more “renaissance” in its approach and cover other topics that interest me and are slightly more generalized in nature. I’ll be sad if that means losing some of my running following, but this is a change I feel needs to be made and I’d really like to see where it goes.

 

Here’s to March!

Do you have any big March plans?

Birthdays: party city or low-key?

Anyone else racing this month?

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13 thoughts on “February in Review

  1. Plans for March include a half marathon but otherwise keeping it low key, since toward the end of April life’s going to get crazy outside of work (so many weddings and the attendant events, travel planned, etc). I am definitely low key for birthdays but also really like to celebrate them – go out for dinner and spend the day with loved ones, just not crazy partying.

  2. Welcome back!!! I understand needing time to adjust to “real life”. It can be pretty overwhelming! Just dumb stuff like house chores and things like that! March March March… I have nothing on the calendar for March! Just continuing to train for 2 April races. Hopefully March will have me getting faster!

  3. Welcome back!!! I feel like I’m way behind whenever I come back from being away, so I can only imagine what the readjustment phase must be like coming back from a trip like Guatemala. Looking forward to your pictures and reading about your experience!

    I totally missed that you’re racing a half this month! For some reason I only remembered your marathon this spring. I think you will have a great race – your training runs have been impressive! No big race plans for me this month, though I’m thinking of signing up for a St. Patrick’s Day 5k to gauge my fitness.

    Happy early birthday! I’m usually pretty low key with birthdays, but last year my husband threw me a big surprise party for my 35th. I have NEVER been so surprised in my life, and while it was outside of my comfort zone to be the center of attention, it was a ton of fun.

  4. Welcome back! Based on you IG pics it looks like you an amazing experience in Guatemala. Can’t wait to read all about it. Birthdays usually depend on what mood I am in around birthday month. Some years I like a party and some years I like it quiet. But I’ve been a huge party so when I say party I mean a sit down dinner party. I was old before my time, ha! I’m leery of this year’s birthday because it will put me into a new age bracket for running. 😦 You have a great running base, I think your race will go really well!

  5. Welcome back! I feel like the greatness of a trip is relative to how long it takes to re-acclimate to daily life, so it makes sense you needed a lot of time to settle in again. I look forward to the trip recap! I love March because it’s one step closer to spring. 🙂 For me it’s especially exciting this year because it’s the last month of my training & my race. I’m looking forward to my break in the spring!

  6. We are birthday month buddies! I’m March 5 🙂 I am so excited to read about your Guatemala trip. And seriously, a 10 day trip would take me forever to re adjust to real life from. I’ve been away for the past 3 days on a work conference and I am already planning on taking off of work tomorrow since we get home tonight and I need a minute to catch up, ha! So I don’t blame you at ALL. I hope you had a great trip!! Welcome back 🙂

  7. Welcome back! I’m looking forward to reading about Guatemala!

    No big plans for March for me. Just the daily grind. I’m a pretty low-key birthday person. I like attention from the people close to me, which usually means a small dinner and some sort of cake or other birthday dessert.

  8. Welcome back! I can’t wait to hear all about Guatemala – it seems as if had quite the effect on you! The first week home after a trip/vacation is always an adjustment especially if it’s been as life-affirming as your trip. Take your time to get back into it.

  9. Welcome back. From your pics it looks like you had a good time. Happy early birthday! I like low key birthdays. My husband and kids cook for me, and sing and that is good! I have a birthday canoli–not much of a cake person!

    I bet you are busy getting back into the swing of things. I don’t have many plans for March…coaching starts up soon, so that is fun. It looks like we will be starting the season WITHOUT SNOW. This is a FIRST!!!

  10. Welcome back! March 20th is my tune-up race, too! Of course, mine is a 10K since I’m training for a half. I can’t wait to read your Guatemala updates. Hope you are settling back in.

  11. Welcome back! I’m excited to read your trip recap. Good luck on your half this month! I know you’re going to do great, you have had such a strong training cycle.
    I’m definitely a low-key birthday person. I did big birthdays in college, but now since I live so far away from most of my family and friends, Ryan and I just do something low key. This year there’s a half marathon on my birthday though (Sept 4) which is very tempting!

  12. Happy birthday! I like to take time to recuperate from vacations. Hopefully, you can find time to relax in the midst of your busy days. Sounds like some fun changes in the future for you and your blog!

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