Welcome 2012

Happy 2012! And thank you for your Chocolate Milk Refuel Grant votes (you can keep voting till January 15th btw!). The winner of the baked goods give-away is:

Congrats Tasha! Email me what you’d like and your shipping address and good things will happen.

I have so many things that I want to write about, so you may want to grab a snack and get comfortable. First things first, how did that whole Runner’s World holiday running streak work out? Surprisingly well! My shins are feeling a little sore which means I’m due for a rest day, but other than that, the streak was pretty easy. Keeping the streak helped me to get out the door on days when I would have otherwise bailed on a run. Case in point: Last Tuesday, it was 5pm, dark, raining, and 34 degrees. Not ideal running conditions, but I got out the door for 2 miles nonetheless. For the month of December 2011, I ended up with 200 miles, exactly. I didn’t even realize it was a nice even number until after I tallied up the miles, post run. How weird is that?!?

Mostly for my own amusement, here’s the mileage breakdown:

December 2011

  1. Dec 1- 4 miles
  2. Dec 2- 5 miles
  3. Dec 3- 4 miles
  4. Dec 4- 11 miles
  5. Dec 5- 7 miles
  6. Dec 6- 7 miles
  7. Dec 7- 7 miles
  8. Dec 8- 6 miles
  9. Dec 9- 3 miles
  10. Dec 10- 11 miles
  11. Dec 11- 8 miles
  12. Dec 12- 7 miles
  13. Dec 13- 7.5 miles
  14. Dec 14- 5 miles
  15. Dec 15- 7.5 miles
  16. Dec 16- 3 miles
  17. Dec 17- 12 miles
  18. Dec 18- 6 miles
  19. Dec 19- 3 miles
  20. Dec 20- 5 miles
  21. Dec 21- 4 miles
  22. Dec 22- 7.5 miles
  23. Dec 23- 4 miles
  24. Dec 24- 4 miles, 2.5 miles
  25. Dec 25- 8 miles
  26. Dec 26- 6.2 miles
  27. Dec 27- 2 miles
  28. Dec 28- 2 miles, 8 miles
  29. Dec 29- 4 miles
  30. Dec 30- 10 miles
  31. Dec 31- 9 miles
  32. ____________
  33. Total: 200.2 miles

Since I didn’t use a Garmin for 99% of these runs, I can’t really be sure of the mileage, but close enough! 200 miles divided by 31 days = 6.45 miles a day. Remember when I was going to chill out during the month of December and not run very much? Yeah, that worked out well. But on the bright side – I have a nice base for Boston training. I’ll have more on that plan later this week…

My final run in 2011 took me from my apartment, across the Brooklyn Bridge (twice), along the waterfront, across the Williamsburg Bridge, and into the Lower East Side. The group I ran with was making it’s second annual NYE trek to the Doughnut Plant. Thanks for organizing Elyssa! If you want to read an awesome recap, check out Susan’s blog. My sweaty self somehow ended up in nearly all the photos.

It was sunny, 50+ degrees, and I finished with a doughnut and coffee. I can’t imagine a better way to end a run (or the year).

I spent the remainder of my day scrambling around, preparing for my little New Year’s eve partay. I definitely want to count all the cleaning and prep that I did as exercise. I’m not a huge fan of big holidays (don’t even get me started on Valentine’s Day…), so I thought that having a few friends over would take off some of the pressure of having the.best.night.ever. I didn’t have to leave my apartment, I spent time with some of my closest friends, and I didn’t drop a Benjamin on cover charges and cab fares. We shall call New Year’s Eve 2011/2012 a success.

Before the guests arrived, a friend and I made homemade pizza. I have also decided that from here on out, I’m only posting photos of myself making bizarre faces.

I call this one “the stinkeye”.

The whole wheat dough was homemade, the sauce was homemade (from CSA tomatoes stashed in the freezer), and I used my fancy pizza stone to get a crispy crust. Unfortunately making the dough into a circle was sort of a fail. Does anyone have tips on how to do that correctly?? The center of the dough kept tearing while the outer edges remained thick. I need a tutorial!

Perfect circle or not, it was (very) edible and provided a good carby base for all the wine and champagne that I ultimately imbibed in.

And since you know how much I love vegetables, I just needed to make some of Emeril’s spinach artichoke dip for the night. Even if a recipe contains a pound of cheese, if it’s green, it’s healthy.

That’s some sound nutritional advice right there. You’re welcome.

This post is already getting long enough, so I’m not going to bore you with an extraneous recap of 2011, but this time of year does provide a good excuse for reviewing the past and making goals for the future.

This year has had its ups and downs. Oh hey running motivation, where were you from January through June?? I took a few falls, made some mistakes, but I’m still in one piece and (most of the time) loving running. I realized how fun relay races can be and although 1:29:xx eluded me, I still managed to PR in the half-marathon. I traveled to the West Coast, the East Coast, the Midwest, Appalachia, and an island. I made some awesome new friends (thanks blog-world/twitter/sweat squad!) and made the leap to my own apartment in Brooklyn.

I just re-read my New Year’s post from last January 1 and upon reflection, I feel like I stayed true to my goal to “just be happy”. Do I have my career all figured out? A boyfriend/fiance/ husband, 2.5 kids, and a cute little house? A bank account that is over-flowing? No, No, and Definitely not. Let’s be honest – if I can make it to work on time and pay the rent, it’s a successful day in Megan-land. To many people, my life might not be the definition of success, but you know what? I end my nights happy and wake up most days excited about what lies ahead. I’m healthy, I’m young, I’m in love with my city, and I have friends who will drink too much champagne with me and collapse on the floor, laughing at 1am.

Of course, I have some things that I’d like to change, some goals for the new year, but there’s time for that. At this point in my life, paying the bills, enjoying running, and being happy is all I can ask for.  And I can say with 100% certainty, that I am happy.

In the next week or so, I’m going to figure out my Boston training planned, so stay tuned. Until then, Welcome 2012!

And I want to know – do you have any running resolutions or goals for the New Year? We could all use a little inspiration and motivation.

  • I’m totally going to have to make the spinach dip! I’ve been on the hunt for a recipe that doesn’t include mayo (blechh). I don’t have a huge running resolution for 2012. My big race (the Houston Marathon) is in two weeks and will likely be my only 26.2 of the year. I’d like to run well and not bonk like I did in New York. Sub-4 hours would be (really) nice, but I won’t beat myself up if it doesn’t happen so soon.

  • Anonymous

    I keep hearing about the donut plant. I need to check it out. Sounds like a great way to end the year! my A running goal is to run a sub 3:30 marathon. It will be a fun time 🙂

  • Mine is to hike a different trail every month for cross-training…

  • Thanks for the nutrition advice- I might have to whip up some of that cheese dip 😉 

    My running goals this year are break 1:35 for the half marathon, run a few ‘fun’ races, and join a running group when I get to NYC in March! 

    Happy New Year! 

  • Jacqui

    My running goal: stay in love with running despite having the life sucked out of me by medical school. If that means skipping practice to run easy and eat a chocolate bar, so be it!

  • Anonymous

    I like Megan-land a lot. You are so right – what more can we ask for than to just be happy? The fact that you are counts for a lot. 

    Hmm, running goals. Stay healthy and try for a sub-3:45 marathon. And maybe a 10K PR too, just for fun. I missed you guys on NYE! 

  • I have a list of New Years goals a mile long, but you’re right that it’s most important to be happy. It’s definitely an achievement just to make it through the day! (Especially when your day starts at 5:45 a.m.!) 
    My dad makes pizza dough a lot and usually we roll it out with a rolling pin. It doesn’t always make a circle (my mom calls my oblong, abstract shapes “rustic” to avoid saying that they look like something a two year old would make) but it keeps the thickness of the crust nice and even! 

  • My running goals: sub-2 half, get to the start of my first marathon healthy, and race my first-ever 5K! 

    On the pizza — I usually pat it out somewhat round and maybe an inch (half-inch?) thick, then hold one edge up and let gravity do the work of stretching it out. I just rotate to a different edge when it starts to go wonky in any particular direction. It doesn’t necessarily end up round, but it does seem to be more even. 

  • cooking with a drink in hand.  the best way to do it.

    running to donuts is a fantastic idea.  i may have to consider this for FedNuts.

  • I’ve never been able to coerce my pizza dough into a circle- let me know if you discover the secret.

  • I’m still loving the running to doughnuts idea. I really want to run a sub 2 half and a sub 4:45 marathon!

  • Nycbklyngirl

    The doughnut plant is pretty good:)  Add in running and it’s perfect.  Up next: run to hot chocolate in February!

    Anyway, running.  Yes, I’ve got goals.  Sub 3:30 and beyond in the marathon.  Sub 1:35 half.  Oh and of course have fun while doing said goals.

  • ” I end my nights happy and wake up most days excited about what lies
    ahead. I’m healthy, I’m young, I’m in love with my city, and I have
    friends who will drink too much champagne with me and collapse on the
    floor, laughing at 1am.” <– yes, yes, yes.  i heart you, lady.

    so i decided 4 days ago that i'm going to run a race in 2012.  just one, a 5k or 10k, i think, and i'd like to run it at a reasonably respectable pace (for me).  my knees have been pain free for 3 straight months now, so i think this might be a fun little project.  i've never done a race before!  i'm also stealing katie's project of cooking one new recipe a week. and, you know, i need to get into grad school and figure out how to pay for it. yay for being young and broke in 2012. 🙂

  • Donut run, so fun!  Glad I could capture you in some pictures.  And thanks for having me for NYE, so fun!

    ” but you know what? I end my nights happy and wake up most days excited about what lies ahead.”  I don’t think it gets better than that.

    3:10 at Boston…you know you want to…

  • Christy Sorrentino

    Congrats on the 200 miles! I’ve been running for a few months now and I really enjoy it (most days) and my resolutions/goals are to really get faster and not be afraid to go further. I’m running my first 10k this weekend (I know that’s nothing for you marathone runners) but I’m really excited! I hope that this will be the start of longer runs. I love reading your posts, very inspiring and shows I can juggle running along with life itself! 🙂

  • Came across this quote: “Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be wonderful”. While all your pieces may not be in the puzzle (though who says you need a career figured out, a hubby and 2.5 kids to have a complete puzzle?!), you have so many great things going and you feel happy where you’re at. Cheers to continuing to feel this way in 2012! 

    Kudos to hitting 200 miles in a ‘down’ month! I need help figuring out Boston training, so I’m looking forward to seeing what you’ve got! Running motivation=meeting Megan for runs in CP..*hint hint*

  • Impressive “easy” month of December, Meghan!   My running goal for 2012 is to not allow anyone wearing a ballerina or Minnie Mouse costume beat me in a race.   Sounds easy, but those guys are speedy!!  🙂

  • Anonymous

    ahaha that is a funny goal. i like it. good luck!

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