Friday, August 24, 2012

Adventures in Rentals

I'm moving to Los Angeles.  West LA to be more specific.

That's just an hour from where I live now, but to me it feels big and crazy exciting!

Also, and I'm afraid to even write this because what if something goes wrong but Anthony is also moving from Sacramento to LA.   I guess if he changes his mind I can buy ten cats to hang out with me instead. 

This will mark the end of 2 years of long distance.  Frankly, there was about a .001% chance of me getting a decent job in Sacramento given my field, so it's a pretty big relief that he got a good opportunity down here.  I'm also relieved because my travel schedule just got a hell of a lot easier.  I love flying, travel, and airport bars are the best but being unable to commit to anything for two consecutive weekends gets old after a while...

And I won't lie, it's also scary.  Any big change brings nervous butterflies. WAHHHH! 

I'm moving in about a month.  Please let me know if you live up there and want to be best friends.  Also let me know if you want to do track workouts or go to a public pool for laps.

The Hunt: I've spent the last two weekends apartment / condo hunting which has been painful to say the least.  It been about ten degrees hotter than a lava pit and my thirteen year old car's AC is less than stellar.  Also, rental agents in LA appear to operate on a time scale that is indecipherable to the rest of the population.

"Hi I'm here for the open house at 1 PM?"

"Oh we're going to lunch, come back at 2PM" 

" said..."

::Rent agent goes back into her Cold War style bunker and locks the door::

Additionally, in a phenomenon that appears to be exclusive to Southern California, most places don't have refrigerators.   This blows my mind.  Who the hell travels with their own refrigerator?  I will happily use an old refrigerator the last tenet used.  Just Windex that shit down and I'm good to go.

Between the rental dude that yelled at me "NO PETS!  YOU DON'T HAVE PET!  NO PET!" and the lady who was showing me the place at the same time as she was trying to manage a cockroach extermination at the same place, I've wanted to smother myself with a pile of rental application several times.

Hoarders:  I've moved four times in since 2008 which is a good thing because I am forced to get rid of most of my stuff.   And I am too cheap to pay for professional movers.  So I own like nothing.  I've been living off roommates stuff since college which has worked out pretty well.  Usually someone already has a couch they want to use...and I'm happy to sit on it rather than insisting on using my own.

Still, despite the fact that I buy nothing substantial, my place without fail ends up resembling an episode of hoarders.

"Those pipecleaners I bought for a stupid costume five years ago?  Don't throw them out, I might need them someday...".  
Basically, in order to avoid being a TLC special, I'm going to have to continue moving on a yearly basis.

Who's to say what's next!

LA Fear:   I've lived in LA before when I went to UCLA for grad school.  I wasn't very happy.

I had no friends, parking sucked, and I had no money.  Also, as someone who loves to chat up everyone (like cashiers at the grocery store, etc.), I found LA pretty unfriendly.

But I'm trying to be really excited for LA this time around.  I'm moving pretty close to the beach and to an area that's just between urban and suburban.   Target accessible and fun bar accessible all at once.

And I'll be damned if I'm going to let the cashiers get away with not talking to me this time around.



...and so it begins.... =)

Friday, August 17, 2012

An Argument for Sadness

I'd like to start on a positive note, even though the rest of this post is kind of morose.  Did you see that Janae  and Billy had a baby?  It blows my mind how chill that girl is, taking videos of herself looking cute and fake jogging right before producing an incredibly cute baby?

Dang.  And congrats.

An Argument For Sadness

Often we are told to be positive.  That we'll be more productive, happier, more enjoyable people if we just focus on the positive.  We should be thankful for what we have.  "Don't be a downer." 

I'm here to tell you that it's ok to be a downer. 

It's ok to be frustrated.  Or not feel like being thankful.  

No matter how good our lives are, it's natural to have frustrations, sadness, and be scared at times.  In fact, I'd argue that it's unnatural to pretend like those parts of us don't exist. 

Maybe it's the constant connections to people straight up bragging through social media channels about their marriage / latest trip / promotion that makes it particularly unacceptable to not feel great about everything we do.  Or maybe it's always been that way.

I think taking a step back from constant positivity can be healthy.  

It's ok to not be 100% happy with where your career is.  Or not be 100% happy in a relationship.  Or want to not be single.  Or just be annoyed that you're not running faster.   Even someone with a great life has the right to not love everything about their life or themselves.  

The past week or two, I've felt really scared and frustrated about some things.  Nothing big honestly.  I'm moving soon and this scares the crap out of me.  I want a big hit project at work and I can't seem to develop one.   And a few other things and thoughts that don't even make sense to me.  Just growing pains I guess.  

The beauty of feeling temporarily hopeless is that I feel like one of those goth kids at the mall, and I want to be one.  I can stare at the wall for hours. Angry and sad music that I haven't listened to in years makes sense to me again. 

Of course, this can end up being ridiculous as well.  I'm still trying to be productive at work, but I really feel like turning around to my coworkers and being like "Hey dudes.  Want to lay back and listen to Radiohead?".   And if I smoked, I'd ask them if they wanted to take a cigarette break.  And we'd bask in our lack of understanding of the world. 


The the best part about about being sad, is that it doesn't last forever.  Nothing really does.  I am sure in a week or two, I'll be back to normal:  more focused, more able to plan workouts, more able to see all the bright spots and wonderful things and people in my life. 

But until then, I'll be hanging out with Jeff Buckley in the most dramatic way possible.  And that's ok too.

Monday, August 6, 2012

NYC Marathon What?

I'm going to say the obvious:

"I can't believe it's almost fall already".

The older I get, the faster time goes by.  By the time I'm 60, I think it's going to be like I'm living in a black hole.  Only less violent.

The fact that it's already August means a few things:
1) NYC Marathon Training Time!
2) If I'm going to do a triathlon in 2012, I better get on it.
3) Greece Trip  (Hell(as) yes).
4) SarahOual had an awesome marathon party and you can read about it here, here, and here.   Love those girls
5) My new compression socks came in the mail.

#5 I have all taken care of:

It's hard to express how kickass these socks are.  ProCompression, please make more designs for every holiday and occasion.   I actually got the Orange socks too, but my roommate/friend took them for herself after I told her wearing compression socks is like getting a leg hug.  Considering I accidentally eat her food a lot because I forget who bought what, I'll call it even. 

Marathon Training

I'm running the New York Marathon.  I've always wanted to run this marathon, and since this is the last year I'll get guaranteed entry unless the "elite fairy" visits me, I figured, gotta do it in 2012!

I'm tempted to run NYC without any sort of weekly plan at all.  Sometimes running plans just make me feel bad if I can't keep up with their mileage or workouts.  And I think I'm better at running by feel.  I also don't want to fall into an overtraining rut.

Here's what I'm thinking my early training weeks will look like:

One "long" run,
One semi long run + tempo (I'm thinking 5 easy + 5 tempo)
One straight up tempo or longish intervals

The rest of the days can be whatever feels right.  Hopefully that's more running most of the time, but I don't want to beat myself up over comparing myself to superwomen who run way more than I do.  

I'd like to peak at around 55 miles a week.  And I'd like to have fun.  I want to do a couple long runs with my friends.   I want to continue hanging out on the track on Tuesdays!   And I'd like to buy some new bunny ears.  Black ones would be sweet.

I think reasonably I should aim for a 3:20 - 3:30 marathon.  If I get faster in the fall, cool, but assuming I keep the same capabilities, I think this is a reasonable pace to target. 

If anyone has any suggestions on marathon training, I'd love to hear them!


I've been searching for a Tri to do in Southern California that has an open water swim but where it's short and calm enough so that I probably won't down/die.  Or look like this little fella:


I think I've found one!

The De Soto Mission Bay Triathlon 

This one is great because the swim is only 500 meters and it's in a bay.  I think if I continue swimming a couple times a week I can be ready to do this in 8 weeks.  Swimming remains a hilarious experience where people using kickboards pass me.   It's always a humbling experience to learn a new sport.  I'm no expert biker either, but right now, I'd just like to complete a triathlon!  

Anyone want to do this with me?


I'm going to Greece in late August for two weeks!  Hell yeah!  Right now we're planning to go to Athens, Hydra, Meteora, and Lesvos / Mytilene (where my family is). 

I've actually never been, so I'm super pumped to meet some of my relatives and see the country.  Right now, I'm planning to barely run while I'm there.  Honestly, I don't want to wake up super early and I don't want to inconvenience everyone else with my OCD running habits.   Plus I think some days off would do me good.  I'm one of those people that has to be pretty deathly ill to not work out, and this will give me time to recover and enjoy the time off.  An occasional morning swim in the Aegean doesn't sound TOO awful, however. 

Of course, I'll miss a couple weeks of marathon training, but I figure if I can build a base now, I'll lose less fitness on vacation.

Plus I'm pretty sure being that close to the town of Marathon will make me faster by association. 

Right?  :)