TOL – Dinner at The Smith & Thoughts While Running


thinking out loud

When I don’t take pictures of my meals, I feel as though they didn’t happen.

I had dinner at The Smith last week. It’s one of my favorite places to eat in the city and I have not one photo to show for it.

I have posted about my dinners at The Smith before (here and here) so if you look at those posts, you can visualize what we ordered — started with the hot potato chips (OMG so good), had the Bibimbap again as my main course, a side of the roasted brussels sprouts and an ice cream sundae (with flourless chocolate cake on the bottom) for dessert.

There. I feel a little bit better now.

I was asked the other day what I think about while running a race.

Back when I would run way too fast for my own good, my thoughts while running were insane and crazy, thinking things like I absolutely hate running and I must be nuts for signing up for these silly races.

I haven’t had those negative thought processes during a race in quite some time though; I attribute this to getting more comfortable with my quicker paces and not starting out too fast during the first couple of miles.

I use my thought processes as my pace gauge — if I start to think crazy or my thoughts become unclear and not polite, I know I am running way too fast and should slow down to pace myself better.

I was extremely focused during most of Sunday’s half.

I tried blocking out the random thoughts for most of the race because I didn’t want to get lost in my head which tends to slow me down.

I did think for a brief moment about how the people running around me always look like their running is effortless yet we all know, they are working equally as hard.

As I got tired, I tried to think about what I would eat after the race that would excite me but the brief thought of food made me nauseous so I stopped that thought process quick.

During the last couple of miles, I do remember thinking of a few of my training runs, especially the early morning progression runs on the treadmill to remind myself that I can certainly push it at the end when it starts to hurt and you want to stop.

I also thought about how my ability to run half marathons is up there with two other major accomplishments in my life.

Like giving birth. I seriously never thought that I would be capable of pushing a baby out of me. I remember the car ride to the hospital while in labor, realizing that no one was going to be able to do this labor thing for me. My mother couldn’t write me a note to excuse me and I couldn’t pass off the delivery of the baby to my mother-in-law (trust me, I contemplated this during contractions)…there was no way out of labor.

I can’t even explain to you the pride I felt after giving birth to my son. I thought I would faint during labor (I didn’t), I thought I would vomit (I didn’t) and I was convinced that something so big couldn’t possibly come out of me (he did).

I totally thought about giving birth during Sunday’s half to strengthen my thoughts into knowing I could finish this race strong. I reminded myself during the last two miles, just when I thought for a second that I might faint if I ran any faster, that I didn’t faint during labor so I wouldn’t faint now!

I also thought (really quickly, as not to dwell on this) about the day that I signed my divorce papers.

It was one of the hardest things that I had to do in my life. It didn’t go down as I envisioned (I always assumed I would take a friend, my cousin or my mom with me along with something chocolate) and I never expected to sign the day that I did, in the courthouse cafeteria without anyone other than my lawyer with me at a dinky table.

But I did it. And it made me stronger. So strong that I can now run races and believe in myself enough to know that even when it gets really really tough, I can so do it. All by myself.

And because I must really enjoy oversharing my life, my closet has experienced a major running shoe explosion. I am so neat that I don’t even understand what happened. Who did this? Why are my running shoes all over the place? Help!

running shoes closet

Thoughts While Running Races #thinkingoutloud #running #races #divorce #halfmarathon #fitfluential Click To Tweet

Do you remember what you think about during a race?

Is your closet neat at the moment or in need of some attention?



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  1. says

    I cleaned out my closet at the end of March, so it’s still look ok but is starting to get a little messy again. Our downstairs closet just has a million shoes thrown in there and there is no way to even try to make it look orderly. I usually don’t remember what I think about when I run. Alot of times I think about how my body feels and how I am breathing. Sometimes I’ll notice the people around me during a race or a spectator with a sign. I also don’t really care to think about the food after a race while I am running! Honestly I never find post-race food to be very good (it just serves the purpose of starting the refueling process) so it’s not like it sounds appetizing to me while I am running.
    Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine recently posted…Running, Sitting, and Low Back Pain {Guest Post}My Profile

  2. says

    Our hall closet is full of a bunch of running shoes and dress shoes (don’t even know why I still have so many pairs of heels) and I don’t even bother to organize it.
    During a race my thoughts get focused and I spend a lot of time honing in on a person and trying to pass them. Usually in the last mile I think about food and tell myself just get to the finish line faster for food.
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Why You Should Consider Signing Up for Pacific Northwest RacesMy Profile

  3. says

    I don’t know what it is, but I don’t have the easiest time zoning out while I run. I’m either thinking about my surroundings, thinking about how much it hurts, or wondering if I should stop before I throw up 😆 It’s like that with everything, though. I can’t zone out while I snowboard or bike either. But I totally agree that you don’t know how strong you really are until you have to be. We can do some pretty epic things when we really need to.
    Amanda @ .running with spoons. recently posted…biking madness, face swap fails, and food talk (ToL#181)My Profile

  4. says

    Ha that’s what both of my closets look like. I have a running shoe addiction and I’m adding another pair to my collection this weekend. I don’t even know what I think about while running. I usually try to think about random things though to take my mind off the race so I don’t focus on how tired I am. Otherwise I start to freak out about not being able to hold a certain pace or something equally dramatic.
    Sarah @pickyrunner recently posted…Thinking Out LoudMy Profile

  5. says

    Running really does translate over into other areas of our lives, eh? It’s incredible. Our lawyer forgot to let us know the day that we got divorced. A few months later she called us and said she found the papers–they had been lost in a pile or something. HA. So dumb. I love your closet. It makes me feel normal. 🙂
    Suzy recently posted…Off PaceMy Profile

  6. says

    The thought of giving birth actually terrifies me. I would love kids someday, but goodness me I can’t think of anything that seems more difficult! And I think about loads of things when I race. My goals, my training, my family, my hopes. No wonder racing makes me emotional…
    And I have to pack up my dorm room this week so my closet and room are about to be a huge mess…
    Caroline M recently posted…Let’s Stop the Bragplaining…My Profile

  7. says

    Ha, yep my closet is starting to flow a bit more into my bedroom in the last few weeks – some definite avoidance going on there! My thoughts while running a race go all over place, from where I’ve parked the car, to family, to what’s coming up the next week, to what I’m gonna eat after the race (there’s a lot of that!) to regularly checking in on pace. I love having all that time to indulge in thinking!
    Fiona recently posted…Breaking DownMy Profile

  8. says

    Ah The Smith is amazing. I love brunching there!

    I will say going through a year of illness puts the hard part of a race in perspective. My mental game is WAY better after navigating Crohn’s. I can imagine that is on the same lines of comparing to giving birth and divorce. Going through hard times I think helps when distance running.
    I do come up with amazing blog posts in my head while I am running. I also promptly forget them when I finish. Hence my barely posting on my blog 🙂
    Gianna @ Run, Lift, Repeat recently posted…Running Recovery WeeksMy Profile

  9. says

    I often think about the brunch I’m going to get after the race, but when like it did for you the thought occasionally turns my stomach, I try to just remember how lucky I am to be out there running (doesn’t always work though). Sometimes you have to let your mind go “there” to get out of a funk though!
    Alyssa @ renaissancerunnergirl recently posted…Taking a VacationMy Profile