A New Yorker in Chicago

The Life and Times of an East Coast Girl, Living, Running and Teaching in the Second City.


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A Slice of Life from a blogger who isn’t a slice of lifer! (Day 14)

There are a number of blogs I read for pleasure. Some are lifestyle blogs that have home decorating tips and DIY projects. Others are food blogs, who share delectable recipes which I then endeavor to take on. Most of the time these recipes take A LOT longer to concoct than I realize, and I’m not eating dinner until 9pm! I also read a fair amount of fitness blog, mostly runners. Some are based in New York. One in particular, Ali on the Run, has been having a rough go of it lately. She has Crohn’s disease, and it prevents her from running as much as she used to. I don’t know her personally, but I used to see her running in Central Park, or at races that I used to run. I was reading her blog yesterday, and I was surprised to see that she had written a Slice of Life! I don’t think she intended to write it that way, but that makes it even more exciting. Writing a Slice of Life is something that many writers do – especially writers who write blogs about some aspect of their lives. Take a look at the excerpt from her post below, and let me know what you think!

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Walking in a Winter Wonderland (Day 13)

As I approached my apartment building last night, I noticed the way the snow had attached itself to the sides of the building. It was as if someone had taken that spray snow and gotten on a ladder to spray it up and down the cornerstones of my building’s balconey’s. The soft glow coming from the moon and the streetlamps cast a golden hue over the whole building. Though I was most certainly disheartened when I woke up yesterday to see a snow covered Chicago once again, the image of my building against the night sky made me stop a moment and appreciate the beauty of it all.

A moment later I turned my head towards the street, and my eyes cast themselves on a tree. Little icles dangled from its branches like diamonds, glittering and twisting and bending the light that hit them. A perfectly dressed up tree, waiting for someone to compliment her accessories. Perhaps I needed a little Christmas in March, to remind me of the glorious beauty of nature.

March 2014 001March 2014 002


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What’s that feeling? (Day 12)

shook myself awake

and schlepped to the bathroom.

Something felt weird. Something was off.

paused, trying to pinpoint the source of my discomfort.

pondered the things I had done to lead me to this point.

My hips felt constricted,

My shoulders seized,

My quads felt as if they had been walloped with a baseball bat.

My core screamed every time I extended my arms.

What was causing my body all this agony?

It was as if my life prior to this moment had toppled out of my head.

Like a lightning bolt, it hit me.

Running,

I ran yesterday.

My legs took colossal strides

My arms swung like a monkey

My core was engaged, holding my body upright.

I ran yesterday.

And I hadn’t run in quite some time.

With the source of my pain identified,

my thinking transformed.

My pain was now a source of pride

and I would wear it as a badge of honor.


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On The Run (Day 11)

March 2014 001

I came home from school today determined. Determined to take advantage of the beautiful weather. Determined to get back into a running routine. Determined to shake the dust and cobwebs off my Kinvara’s and let them back out where they belong – on the running path. I stepped in my door and immediately searched for my running watch and charger. Once I plugged in, I knew I would have about half an hour until it was charged enough to work. I had a snack, read a bit, and headed to my closet to put on running clothing.

Bright blue running tights, a purple tank and my Run NYC ’13 shirt all made the cut, along with my beloved Kinvara’s. I discovered that my new phone doesn’t fit in my running armband, but luckily my running tights have a zip pocket to keep it secure. I fished my headphones out of my backpack, took my key off its ring, stepped out the door and tucked my key safe in my Road ID.

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I hit play on my running playlist, warmed up with a few stretched, and I took off. With Anna Kendrick’s “When I’m Gone” playing loud in my ears, I headed for the lake front running path. A few stops to wait for the light to change, and I started to get into a groove. After about a tenth of a mile, a smile began creeping across my face. I was running! I hadn’t forgotten how! And it felt great!

The music gods were on my side for this run. “When I’m Gone” was followed up by Swedish House Mafia “Don’t You Worry Child”, then Matt and Kim’s “It’s Alright”. Everywhere I looked, runners, cyclists and walkers were enjoying the beautiful sunshine and warm (comparatively speaking) weather. Smiles were plastered across faces, legs were moving, and runners were jamming out to their own personal playlists. Up next, Adele’s “Cold Shoulder”, then “Prelude/Angry Young Man” by the one and only Billy Joel. My legs started moving quicker as “Prelude/Angry Young Man” transitioned into Florence and the Machine “Shake It Out”. I had forgotten how much I love a song that has the power to speed me up, that I love so much I can’t help but stay on the beat with my stride.

Before I knew it, I was back at my apartment, three miles run and done. In a couple of weeks I’ll be running the Shamrock Shuffle, and today’s run gave me the confidence I needed to prepare for those 4.97 miles.


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Sleep to Wake (Day 10)

Thoughts zip through my mind as I lay in bed. My alarm went off 20 minutes ago, and yet I still lie here, working out everything that needs to be done today and tomorrow and the next day. It feels cool outside my blanket, but underneath it is warm and cozy. It feels like I am sleeping on a cloud. I never want to get up. I kick my legs and let the blanket fall underneath my feet – a blanket cocoon has formed itself around me. I pull the cover up to my nose, arms gripping the blanket, locking out any of that cool air threatening to disrupt my prolonged slumber. I grab my phone and pull it under the covers with me. The glows illuminates my face and strains my eyes. I begin checking in – email first, the news, Instagram. I have to make sure it’s all still there. Slowly, I begin to fully rouse my brain from its restful state. A new day, a new week. I throw my covers off in one direction and roll off the bed in the other. Feet make contact with the ground, and after a moment they’ve remembered how they work. The lamp next to my bed switches on, and I grasp for my glasses. I stumble into the closet and grab a sweatshirt. The coffee pot is calling my name.


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I couldn’t look away. (Day 9)

I turned around, and suddenly, I was looking into these beautiful, blue-grey, smoky eyes. They sat around a tiny button nose, surronded by delicious chubby cheeks and small, red, pursed lips. Tiny fingers gripped two blankets – one, a blue not all that different from the color of his eyes, the other white with tiny blue and brown paw prints. His gaze was steady and directed right at me. I couldn’t look away. He kept his eyes locked on mine, face serious, no smile emerging. It was as if he was staring deep into my soul, trying to find something deep within me. I couldn’t look away. As he continued his staredown, I started one of my own. Slowly, an image came into focus in his eyes. It became clearer and clearer. It was me. A perfect reflection of myself in his clear, smoky blue-grey eyes. I couldn’t look away. The intensity of his eyes, the seriousness of his stare made him seem wiser than his two years. I couldn’t look away.


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The Missing Slice (Day 8)

There’s not a lot of time.

Something quick, something easy.

Open the fridge.

Asparagus. Yogurt. Wraps. Eggs. Eggs!

Crack one, two, three. Into the pot, a pat of butter.

Stir stir stir.

Add some cheese. Fry up some sausage.

Plate, food, done.

Sit down at the counter, breathe, eat.

There’s something missing.

Eyes scan, fruit bowl.

Mandarins.

Fingernails dig through the skin.

Peel apart the slices, one slips.

The missing slice.

Dinner, done

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