figuring out this whole ironman training thing

On July 23, some 3,000 athletes will be in Lake Placid, New York, ready to jump in Mirror Lake to kick off a very, very long day. I will be one of them. I’m about five weeks into training for Ironman Lake Placid, and I’ve got a lot of work to do before I’ll be…

things my grandma loved

My grandma loved many things. More things and people than I could ever imagine, I’m sure. But that’s just who she was — a person immensely, almost impossibly, full of love. G’ma loved to sing. I remember being little, and loving to sing, too, but I didn’t want to sing too loud — like at…

two marathons in two months: part two

I always wonder what’s going through the minds of other athletes during races. I think to myself, Are you as miserable as I am? I had this thought particularly often during my most recent race, the Walt Disney World Marathon. Perhaps it was related to the whole “Happiest Place on Earth” thing, but seriously, I think…

how not to train for a marathon, in 6 easy steps

Step one (six weeks before race day): Run your first marathon. Step two (four to five weeks out): Run no more than 5 miles total.  Step three (four weeks out): Deplete your body of all strength and energy, to the point that you cannot exercise. A stomach bug will quickly and effectively help you complete…

two marathons in two months: part one

I’ll start by answering the obvious questions: Is it smart to run two marathons in two months? Probably not. For me personally? Certainly not. Why are you doing this? It wasn’t intentional. I’m just a poor planner. Why didn’t you change your plans? Enthusiasm. And stubbornness. Now that I’ve cleared that up… A month ago, I…

a thought dump, two weeks before a marathon

Spent a few weeks trying to figure out what was worth writing about after my most recent race. Race recap didn’t sound all that interesting. Couldn’t draw some sort of non-cliché lesson from the experience. Nothing all that entertaining happened, either. So don’t write about it, I thought. But I’m still thinking about it three weeks…

the finish line is everything

“It will end, eventually.” I know — not the most inspiring mantra. But that’s what got me through my worst race in the last few years. I’m well acquainted with bad days — what athlete isn’t? — but I’ve always been one for positive self-talk to get over it: Just get through this mile. You’ve got…

procrastination at its finest

THE KITCHEN COUNTER // BROOKLYN — things I have done today to put off my 16-mile run sleep in past noon download iOS 10 wash dishes groom my dog watch a football game between two teams I don’t care about shop on Amazon fill an Amazon Pantry box (unreasonably time consuming, therefore a perfect procrastination activity)…

smells like race season

SOMEWHERE OVER NEW FOUNDLAND // SEAT 35G — There’s nothing like an eight-hour flight to make you want to go for a run. I guess I’ll settle for writing about it.  Race season is upon us. Sure, I do a race of some sort almost every month, but now it’s getting to the point where…

the last living dinosaur

[think kit. day six.*] THE COUCH // CHICAGO — There’s a Snorasaurus in my apartment. Two, actually. They’re nocturnal beasts, and they’re very cute. I call MW the Snorasaurus when he’s snoring. I’d say it to Marvin, too, but he wouldn’t understand (or stop snoring, for that matter). Calling my guys Snorasauruses is my way of making an annoying…

the 7 emotional stages of racing a world championship

ON A PLANE // SOMEWHERE BETWEEN D.C. AND CHICAGO — “Do you like it?” I was in the gym locker room after an early morning pool workout, and the woman who had been swimming alongside me was asking me about training for triathlons. “I love it.” Given the week I’d had — a less-than-great fraction…

the week of the chocolate chip cookie

THE COUCH, WITH LOTS OF PILLOWS // CHICAGO — I have eaten a lot of cookies in the last eight days. In what became a very messy week, I needed something constant to rely on, and I allowed chocolate chip cookies to assume this role. It started last Saturday, when MW & I were in Indianapolis for a wedding, and…