Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The real reason I love running?

My Dodger par'ner / running buddy Val texted me about our planned run on Sunday morning. I've been very inconsistent with my running lately and when I confessed this to him I could tell he was disappointed in me. UGH! I hate to be a disappointment.
When I'd first approached Val about pacing me for the SF Half next month, he hadn't been running in months. He very generously agreed to pace me and has been genuine in his training. Unfortunately I can't say the same for myself! So off we went on Sunday to tackle the Greenway Trail for 5+ miles. 
 Everything went smoothly until we came across a barricaded section of the trail. Good news: Whittier is finally getting a dog park! Bad news: we had to trespass through this section because we were not motivated enough to find a way around. (What fence?) 

SO, the results at the end of the run were not too shabby. I just scrolled through some archived Garmin & RunKeeper records and it seems I haven't lost any speed during this recent June hiatus. Hooray! 

Afterwards we went very nearby to have breakfast at Rocky Cola Cafe. 

Val's breakfast of champions-eggs, hashbrowns, bacon, extra butter: 
My breakfast of calorie-counters--veggie egg whites omelet, dry wheat toast
 This helped a lot though:

It is becoming more and more plain to me that perhaps the real reason I run is so that I can hang out with runner friends and then go out to eat after we run together. I'm superficial a lot. 

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Chicago Day 2

This week I was lucky enough to be able to check off some bucket list items in Chicago. Day 1 here. 

After partying on Clark Ave til 2am (#worthit), it was a little difficult to get up in the morning to get a run in. But since this was an entire half of the reason I came to Chicago in the first place, I got my butt up and went East on Addison toward the Lake.
I don't want to keep sounding like an ad for Airbnb, but the place I booked  was literally 2 blocks from Wrigley and then a few blocks from the Lake. How perfect is that?

I was on the path for a couple of miles and snapped a few pictures and thought it was great. Lake Michigan, whoo hoo and all that. THEN I turned a bend and saw the Chicago SKYLINE. OMG, that was too cool:
I ran 3.5 miles but it took me a total of 58 minutes because of all my stops. My phone wasn't auto-pausing when it should have. Weird.

Anyway, I was enamored with all the neighborhoods and the entire vibe of Chicago. Everybody I know who's been to Chicago can't rave enough about it. I GET IT, I GET IT. To say Chicago is a great town is like saying the Great Wall of China is a cute fence.
We don't have this in drought-ridden SoCal
After my awesome run, I showered & got dressed & packed up my things. By now it was almost 9am. I let my host know I would need to keep my bags in the room until around noon, but that they could go on in if they needed to get the room ready for the next guest. FYI, on Airbnb when you're searching for a place you always read the reviews of that place. Conversely, when a host is thinking about allowing you to stay in their place, they read YOUR reviews as well. So don't do anything that will get you a bad review by a host.
Made my way over to the Sears Tower after a breakfast of champions from Dunkin Donuts.
This would be the only thing I'd have time to see today before heading back to the airport

Stepping out onto that ledge was no joke! I was rolling my eyes (I can be a jerk a lot) at people who were being skittish at the edge of the ledge/building until I got up right next to it myself!!! And then I was being that dork who couldn't step out onto the glass.

After the Skydeck/Sears Tower/Willis Tower, I was worried about making it back on time via the trains so I grabbed a cab instead. From downtown Chicago to Wrigleyville the cab cost $13. HELLOO! OMG, if i'd known how cheap it was to take a taxi I might have cabbed it all over town instead of taking the train. We don't have a lot of cabs in LA and they are super expensive. Ah, well, live and learn.

My goals for this 24 hour trip to Chicago were to: see the Bean, eat deep dish, visit the Art Institute, see the Sears Tower, go to the game, have a Chicago dog at the game, run on Lake Shore. I missed seeing the Art Institute so that will have to happen another time.

Because of the fact that I was traveling alone & had befriended a stranger during the game I had to be overly cautious about the crap that only women have to worry about: being roofied or taken advantage of in some way. For that reason I didn't want to eat or drink anything that I didn't purchase myself and wasn't in my possession from the kitchen to my mouth. For example:
(no you can't buy me a beer)
My new friend Chris was really nice and I had TOOONNNS of fun with him, but still, the entire time I was thinking I didn't want to end up on some 20/20 episode. 
So the Chicago dog was eaten at the airport instead of the game, which may not have been as authentic but was still absolutely delicious. It is now my new favorite hot dog. 

I will be posting my Yosemite week soon even though it happened before Chicago. I dropped my phone in the river while rafting and have had to do a bit of legwork to get those pictures.