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Seasonal Runner

by Kristen on November 18, 2013

in College Life

I’ll start off today by saying that my lost post did not resurface.  :-(  Note to self:  do not leave papers at work ever again.  I tried to recreate what I had written; hopefully it’s close to what I had before.  At the very least, I added some lovely pictures that make this new post more interesting!  You’ll find them below, between some of the paragraphs.

In the summer, I try to get up and run in the mornings, before the heat becomes sweltering.  I like being in the fresh air and sunshine; it gives me energy and increases my positivity for the rest of the day.  I should make a note here that my “running” is close to the speed of an elderly couple taking a walk.  I am not at all a fast runner, but I prefer to use that term over “jogging,” which reminds me of fuzzy sweatsuits and workout videos from the 80’s.  So running it is.

As morning temperatures begin to drop, however, I often start crawling back into bed instead of putting on my tennis shoes.  I tell myself, “I’ll run this afternoon.”  Later, when afternoon arrives, I realize that I’ll be at work until the sun goes down, and all motivation to exercise dissipates with the sinking sun.  Sad day, right?

Some days, however, I say to myself, “It’s not that cold, you’ll be okay,” and I put on my shoes and go out anyway.  And never have I regretted a morning run.   Really, does anyone ever say “I wish I hadn’t exercised today?”  Barring personal injuries, I would say no, that phrase does not exist.  When I get myself out the door and start off down the sidewalk, I am able to enjoy all the fall colors swirling around my feet.  St. Louis is so pretty this time of year, when all the leaves are changing and falling from the trees.  I never get out as much as I plan to, but I’m grateful that I do get to several times each week.

Yes, I do stop to take pictures while I run.  I know it defeats the purpose of exercising to be standing in the middle of the road with a camera, but I can’t miss the opportunity.

What do you like to do for exercise?  Besides running, I’ve tried Zumba classes and yoga classes.  Let me know if you have any interesting workout experiences to share!


Wow, what a long and crazy week it has been. Other than the usual babysitting, baseball games, and tasks that fill my life daily, this last week has held some different happenings.

In the last week, I have decided to get my heart pumping again and stray from yoga and standard dance technique and added running to my workout routine. I have never considered myself a “runner” at any point in my life, but I felt that with dance coming up at the beginning of fall I needed to increase my stamina. I began on Monday with my brother. He’s a “runner,” having participated in track and holding a natural ease for it. He took me through our neighborhood and made sure I made it through. The run was a mile long, a triumph for me, especially in 90 degree heat. I continued to run the route on my own the rest of the week, and although I don’t feel that great during, after the run I feel cleansed. I hope to continue this the rest of the summer and into the fall back at Fontbonne. Got to put those running shoes to good use!

Sadly, this past week was also filled with the death of a family friend. I spent all weekend over in St. Louis celebrating him and the life he held. It was truly beautiful and respectful. His family wanted to celebrate the lives they had with him, and not dwell on his passing. I was amazed by their strength.

The absolute best thing that’s happened in the last week is the arrival of my best friend! She’s back from studying abroad. After weeks of daily emails and one unsuccessful Skype session, I finally get to see her in person. We’re meeting up this week for dinner and a TON of talking. We’re used to spending almost every minute of every day together at school, so I’m bracing myself for quite the reunion.

After a week of ups and downs, I hope this week brings some rest. I’m not sure that it will, but a girl can dream right?

Thanks for reading..


Considering the fact that I’ve spent so much time this summer stressing about the future, I find it odd that suddenly my worries have evaporated, leaving behind nothing but this odd mix of new feelings, ones like peacefulness and acceptance and hope and excitement, the same ones I used to have when I thought about all of the potential that fills the road ahead of me (Pretty sure that’s a massive run-on sentence. Sorry.). Where will I go? Who will I become? Finally, there are no limits anymore.

I’ve also spent a lot of time stressing over other peoples’ journeys, asking if, because the path I’m taking is different than theirs, I’m somehow behind in life or just don’t measure up. But again, this stupid anxiety is being replaced by a new, more positive affirmation: that I should embrace the weird twists and turns that make up my story, because they’re kind of really awesome.

But enough of the future—I want to enjoy the here and the now. On my run the other morning, as I was descending one of the Monster Hills in my neighborhood and I looked out on the horizon to see the blue morning sky kissing the open fields of hay bales below, then back down ahead of me to see the wildflowers in the field to my right, I remembered how happy I am to be here, at home. To be running a lot and finally getting chafe marks and blisters again. To be up and finished with my workout before anyone else in my family is awake.

So on that note, here it is: home.


“Babys” by Bon Iver


As of tomorrow, I will have been on summer break for exactly one month. Which is kind of terrifying, considering the fact that I’ve really done nothing but think. And worry. And repeat. And repeat, and repeat. And as I was engaging in this fun little pastime of mine the other day during one of my first days back outside lifeguarding (it wasn’t even warm enough to be swimming, but whatever.), I had a really incredible breakthrough: all of my worrying has gotten me pretty much nowhere. In fact, if anything, I think it’s gotten me closer to death by a heart attack, or possibly obesity since stress does in fact cause you (read: me) to eat more (especially things like vegan cookies, or veggie pizza, for example. Not like I did this.). Indeed, I have solved absolutely nothing by worrying or writing really complicated blog posts about it. I figured that the more I worried and thought about it, I would surely come out the other end with my life totally planned out, and everything would be perfect: I’d have my grad school chosen, I’d know where I was going to live, where I would work, what my clothes would look like, the name of my future pet Goldendoodle when Shadow passes away (thinking about naming it after him, if said dog is a male), and I would know exactly what kind of girl I would be. That was my logic behind my non-stop worrying, anyway: that it would help me figure out the answers to all the unknowns of my future. I mean, there are a lot of things I’m scared of happening: I won’t stay true to myself, I won’t have the courage to go after my dreams, my Goldendoodle and I will live with my parents (okay, I’m not seriously afraid of this happening. But you get my point.). Non-stop worrying is my way of “preventing” or at least, my attempt at preventing, my worst nightmares from unfolding in my future life.

My mom told me that I could have things all planned out, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s how my life will end up playing out. Indeed, rather than being so anxious about the “what if’s” that probably will never happen, maybe it’s time I start embracing the fact that I have no idea what’s going to happen down to the very last detail. And that that’s okay: “When nothing is sure, everything is possible.” Everything! But sitting around, wasting my summer and energy on worrying and trying to figure out the future isn’t going to make that “everything”, those possibilities, into a life I love. If anything, worrying is just going to make things worse and more confusing and make me a miserable mess. And I’ll end up dying an early death on top of it all, from that heart attack mentioned earlier.

So. If you’re feeling pressure to have it all figured out, or you’re scared about what’s ahead of you, don’t be! No need to over think the future (like me)—just trust yourself. Follow your heart, your head, and, at times, your digestive system (I’ve found it’s a pretty good indicator when something isn’t right). Don’t worry about others. Know that the future will turn out to be probably way more amazing and different than those plans you stressed so much about making. Breathe. It’ll all be okay.

Now. I’m done. I promise. No more stressed out, obnoxiously long blog posts on this topic. You’re sick of it, I’m sick of it. And anyway, my skin is turning gold again! The sun is shining! New music is coming out! There are cookies to be made and eaten (but not because of stress)! There are runs to run! Let’s move on, shall we?

I’m ready.


“I Need Fun in My Life” by The Drums


I Fell in Love Again.

by Alumni Posts April 30, 2013

The last blog post of the semester. Before you read on, I would highly, highly recommend you listen to this song, which the title of my post is derived from. For one, because it’s so beautiful, I think, and two, because things will make more sense if you do. I’ve been listening to it a […]

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All I Want Comes in Colors

by Alumni Posts March 26, 2013

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by Alumni Posts January 25, 2013

As cliché as it may sound, if there’s one thing I’ve learned during the course of my time in college so far, it’s that this really is a time of self-discovery. If you had told the straight across bangs-sporting, ballet dancing, high school version of myself that once I went to university, I would quit […]

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by Alumni Posts November 5, 2012

I am selfish and self centered.  But I am curious, does anyone read my blog posts? I love to write but don’t write often enough. Writers write, so that is why I have undertaken the task of contributing to this blog. Really I should not care what others think, but I totally wondered, is anyone […]

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by Alumni Posts October 22, 2012

If you’re a loyal follower of my blog, surely you remember my overjoyed post about my first half marathon, which I ran in April. My time was a disappointment, but the experience definitely wasn’t. And I think of all the obnoxious pictures of me as I’m crossing the finish line are proof that, although I […]

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You Set the Tempo, Set the Pace.

by Alumni Posts April 16, 2012

You Know You’re a Runner When… 1.)  You can devour a whole stack of pancakes (and the side of bacon you requested, too) from Crepes Etc. without feeling like a total fatty because, hey, you just ran 13.1 miles and need to “restore your glycogen reserves.” 2.)  Hills don’t intimidate you whatsoever. 3.)  Your runs […]

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