#RWrunstreak Update

I have officially been running for 31 consecutive days.

Now that I think about, I’m not even quite sure why I decided to do this in the first place.

Over time, it seems that our reasons for doing things change over the course of the journey. Or maybe we just lose sight of the reasons.

For me, after a while, running every day just became second nature. Another daily routine, like brushing my teeth or eating a meal.

The Runner’s World Run Streak will be ending in exactly a week, however I’m not so sure if I’ll even end it just yet. Throughout my life, running has always been a form of therapy. A way to maintain a strong mental health. (And I’ve written about this before; when I stay away from running for a long enough period of time, I literally begin having mental breakdowns)

It’s always good to re-discover our reasons for the things we love to do. Without recognizing our reasons and motives for these things, everything just seems sort of meaningless. We need to feel that what we do has purpose. We need to feel that to attain happiness.

I never want to lose sight of the reasons I run. Knowing why I love running gives me hope that a feeling like this can last. A feeling of passion.

In life, we stray from many things. The love we feel in a relationship. The love for our job. Sometimes even the love of life.

It’s necessary to be in touch with our reasons for the things we love to do. It’s necessary to survive.

Every second, every minute, every hour

It only seems appropriate to write about the inexplicable mystery that is “time” on the longest day of the calendar year.

The first day of Summer.

I’ve most likely already made some sort of reference as to how much I’ve realized just how precious every second of every minute of every hour is ever since I’ve moved into New York City.

Maybe it’s just more noticeable in New York City because our entire days are based off of a schedule that we cannot control; the bus, the subway, the train…public transportation in general. If you’re even a second late walking through that turnstile in the subway, you could miss your train to work, or to a friend’s house, or going back home. That very instance could drastically change the entire course of your day.

It’s impossible to trace back to the very moment that could have made everything different though. Instead, it’s a compilation of the tiny moments and milliseconds that we were early or late.

We’re always in a rush in New York City.

Everyone always has somewhere to be and other people are just an obstacle standing our way.

But the thing that really gets to me is the interactions that we have (or don’t have) with the people around us.

Call me an ooey-gooey romantic, but I always have that ongoing fantasy of bumping into the love of my life at a coffee shop or on the subway in passing or in Central Park.

For the millions of people who live here, it’s really difficult to take the time to get to know someone that way. That’s definitely something that I’ve been adjusting to over the course of time that I’ve been here.

My inspiration for this blog entry comes from the people whom I have met since I’ve moved here, but have completely vanished only a few months or weeks later after meeting them.

New York City is all about speed. Instant results. Everything has to happen fast because we can’t waste a minute of our time. I’ve learned this due to the short-lived collapsed relationships that I’ve had.

I’ve also learned that jumping too quick into anything never yields long-lasting results.

It’s true that every second of every minute of every hour counts. Making it last, however, now that’s a whole different story.

On this long, long first day of Summer, I wonder where I’ll end up or meet.

Spontaneity

Lately, my unplanned days have ended up being my best and most happy/exciting days. And for me to say this is absolutely shocking (This is coming from someone who’s life is based on the very foundation that everything must be pre-planned, pre-known, and pre-meditated)

However, knowing as much as I could possibly know about myself up until this point, I’ve realized that trying to be too in control of a situation never works out in the end. It often just leaves me with high hopes that are eventually shattered into a heaping pile of disappointment. That, or, I mess things up before they even begin. Or get sick.

Yesterday marked my 24th consecutive day of running, (due to the Runner’s World Run Streak) but more importantly, it was also a 5K PR day for me.

My co-workers and I spontaneously decided to do a 5K race in Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Originally, I had plans to attend a “Runner’s Happy Hour” event that I was invited to by another co-worker. Instead, I decided to change up my plans and run the 5K because honestly, I’d rather spend $5 on running than $5 on drinking.

I found that it ended up being the best decision I made all day.

I had no expectations for this race at all and I learned that when you make a spontaneous decision that fast, there’s really no time to over-think the situation or stress out about the outcome.

I’ve always envied people who would just “go with the flow” or “let things happen” I never understood how someone could live like that. I was always a believer in “If you want something, go get it”, and that’s how I’ve always done things. That’s how things have always worked out for me in terms of success.

Yet, I now know that this mindset doesn’t apply to every situation, especially when it comes to having fun.

Yesterday, I went with the flow and let nature take its course. I didn’t stress or worry, and I ended up placing 1st in my age group and running a 5K time of 21:30 that I never imagined I could get back to after high school. It was a small restoration in my confidence and my overall quality of life.

A re-occurring theme that I am now settling on for this blog is balance. It’s a skill that I’ve been trying to grab a hold of and will continue to grab a hold of for the rest of my life. It’s necessary.

Sometimes you need to be serious, and sometimes you need to be fun. Not too much of one or the other.

So, I will leave off with this quote:

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all” – Helen Keller

#RWrunstreak

Earlier on, I blogged about stagnancy (Refer to: On Setting New Goals) After I ran the Big Sur Marathon and the dust had settled, my excitement finally wore off. I began feeling the itch to create a new goal for myself. Luckily, an opportunity presented itself in the form of the Runner’s World Summer Run Streak 2013.

This opportunity was perfect for me because the rules had already been laid out and it was just up to me to adhere to them (The rules are simple: Run at least 1 mile every day beginning on Memorial Day, May 27th and ending on Independence Day, July 4th)

The first time that I tried the Runner’s World Run Streak, it was around Thanksgiving/My birthday, and I basically chickened out within the first few days of starting.

This time around, I have no excuse. It’s a perfect way to stay in shape for the Summer as well as train for upcoming Summer/Fall races. I couldn’t ask for a better deal.

I’m currently on Day 15 of consecutively running and I feel pretty amazing.

I’ve been cutting back on the mileage when my legs need the rest, but for the most part, my runs have been very strong and consistent.

The next race on my calendar is on June 29th, where I’ll be participating in the Front Runners 5-Mile Pride Run in Central Park.

I’m happy to say that I made the initiative and took action in my time of stagnancy and now I have my sights set on new running goals. I have approximately 3 weeks left of my run streak and at this point, I’m going the distance, both figuratively and literally (Yes, that was a bit corny)

And transitioning from this, I can also say that I’ve been feeling very optimistic about other areas of my life again.

Looking back on past posts, it’s interesting to see the drastic change in my attitude from one day to the next.

Sometimes, all you really need is a little spark to get you started. From there, it’s up to you to keep the fire going.

Identity Crisis: Online versus In-Person

In the current realm of social media, it’s easy to claim oneself as anything they want. Through the internet, you can create an online-version of yourself, who has an insurmountable number of talents, skills, hobbies, professions, etc.

And in terms of personality, you can be funny, political, philosophical, dramatic.

You can be as passive as you want or as aggressive as you want; Say little to nothing or tweet every 27 seconds.

Basically, anything goes. Every post is fair game.

However, the downside to this is determining authenticity and credibility.

In my Freshmen year of college, I wrote a paper (which I still take a great deal of pride in) about the impact that Wikipedia has on education and the way students learn. I wrote this paper 4 years ago, and I’m even more blown away by how quickly information is relayed over the internet.

There are almost no surprises anymore. We know everything about everything and everyone.

Getting back to the topic of online-versions of people, there are two ways to look at it:

  1. Social Media simplifies the way we get to know people
  2. Social Media complicates the way we get to know people

To start with the first point of view: Social Media simplifies the way we get to know people

There are a few things…

Getting the dirt on someone nowadays is very accessible. A majority of people across the globe have at least one online profile of some sort, whether it be Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, Youtube, Vine, OKCupid…the number of platforms are endless. Even if they didn’t create a profile themselves, the chances are that there is a website out there that has already created one for them.

Gathering information online and piecing it together to form a hypothesis about what a person is really like is not exactly rocket science.

Similar to a way a person carries themselves in real life, such as the way they walk, talk, sit, etc., is the same as the way a person carries themselves over the internet. The pictures they post, the links they share, the statuses they write. Most people can draw assumptions off of someone based solely by looking at their profile picture. And then there’s the information that they post.

The “About Me” section is critical. No one wants to seem too much of a certain way, so they try to sum themselves up in as many different descriptions as possible.

People include their job, musical preferences, the school they went to, the kind of food they like, the movies they enjoy…the list goes on.

This is the part that simplifies everything.

Many girl friends of mine create pros and cons lists to evaluate certain situations. Typically, it’s for the guys they date. Here’s an example:

Pros:

  • Has a good job
  • Is athletic
  • Likes Mexican food

Cons:

  • Too short
  • Just got out of a relationship
  • Lives too far away

It’s easy for anyone to weed out the traits that we don’t like before we even meet person

And onto the second point of view: Social Media complicates the way we get to know people

The tricky part is that it’s really unfair to judge a person that you’ve never even met in person.

Again, similar to the way a person carries themselves in real life, we can make the same judgments in person as we do online.

But as the saying goes, “You can’t judge a book by its cover”

You always have to give people the benefit of the doubt. Chances are that you are wrong about them…or right. It can go either direction, but that’s exactly why you have to see for yourself.

Disclaimer: Meeting people is at your own discretion. I am not an advocate for online dating or anything of that sort.

In summation, you never really know what a person is like. Sometimes there are people that you have known in-person for years, but still haven’t quite learned everything. It’s impossible.

We’re all complicated individuals. Every experience has molded us differently. So again, you have to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. People could surprise you and like I said, it could go either direction.

National Running Day

It’s only natural that my first post in quite some time so happens to be on National Running Day!

Although it may seem silly and pointless to some people, it is actually quite significant to many- myself included.

Running has helped me in so many ways that I can’t possibly list them all in this blog (let alone this one specific entry)…but I’ll try

I run…

  • for inner peace
  • for clarity
  • for my health
  • because it’s cheaper than alcohol
  • because it’s cheaper than seeing a therapist
  • because it keeps me fit
  • because I love having leg muscles
  • to give back to my community
  • to be a part of a community
  • to support a cause
  • to find a cure
  • to eat whatever I want
  • for my friends
  • for my family
  • for myself
  • because I love it
  • because it makes me happy
  • because it challenges me
  • to push myself
  • to overcome obstacles
  • to test my limits
  • to cope with stress
  • to race
  • for life
  • for love
  • for healing

I’m sure there are many other reasons as to why I run, but this was what came to mind

I look forward to celebrating this day by getting in a fun, easy run along the East River (my new favorite spot because I go to Central park way too much)

Many the miles…