Here’s the thing: I don’t really do internet meet-ups. They’re not my thing. They stress me out, because I am an introvert to my core. I don’t like small talk.

But with these people? These aren’t meet-ups. These trips we occasionally post about are long distance friends convening on a place and spending a precious, concentrated, and very finite amount of time together. 

Through years of blogging, these have become my people. Witty comments on posts became asks that showed general mutual interest in each other’s lives. For convenience’s sake, we moved from Tumblr to gchat and texts. We sent each other Facebook requests. When I eventually met each of these lovely humans, it felt natural. It felt like I had known them forever. (With the exception of Chris, who I actually had to bully into following me the morning we met in Conway, Arkansas back in 2011. “No, I’m sure you don’t follow me, actually. But you do follow my sister.”)

With these people, we create blissful reunions, and every moment is savored and treasured. Last weekend was doubly special, because not only were we all lucky enough to come together from very disparate geographical locations at the same time in order to spend a weekend with each other, but we also got to celebrate as two of our clan tied the knot.

There is still a fairly noticeable taboo against meeting people online, especially through blogging. People just don’t get it. Even at present, when most romantic relationships form online through dating websites, there is still a stigma surrounding people who make lasting friendships with people that they meet online. That said, I have never been one to give any fucks about taboos.

To me, calling these people The Internet is just a way of describing how I know them. Just like I have my college friends, high school friends, and adventuring friends, I also have my blogging friends.

I hate when people say “real life” friends to differentiate how they know their humans, because it feels backhanded. Because I met someone online, does that make them less real? By using these words, they are insinuating that the strength and impact of relationships formed online are less important, less meaningful, and less tangible than those formed by other means.

In many ways, The Internet holds some of the strongest, most profound relationships in my life. They are founded in mutualism and communication.

These humans are real life, and I love their guts.

The Bizzle Sizzle will never Fizzle

One of the absolute most amazing things about starting a blog for me have been the friendships that have happened. When starting this blog it was all about a way to document my life and obtain my goals and dreams. It has been all of that, but the part where I would make some of my best friends ever was not.

I was so lucky to have Jbizzle329 come all the way out to Utah to visit me. Such a lucky guy I am, truly! We had met once before in New Orleans and other than that have never spent time together. To spend Monday to Friday with someone you have spent so little time with it is a risk, but for some reason when it comes to people from tumblr it isn’t even a worry. There is such an amazing bond that only those who have walked this path can describe. I think the word is crazy.

I could do a super long recap of our trip and tell you all the wonderful jokes, ( oh and they were so wonderful ) the lyrics to our future number one smash hit, ( You’d steal if I told them ) and how a panther jumped on me while camping on me and the bat that tried to steal my nose from my face. But maybe those moments are best left between two wonderful friends. However since this is fitness related, maybe I talk about all of fitness that was happening.

I decided that we would do 20 miles of trails. 4 miles of tube floating on the river and some good upper body climbing and lunging to make it an all around workout. I was amazed at how awesome Jbizz did. She was such a trooper and just smiled and laughed almost the whole time, except for the one small meltdown when she thought that her future home was going to be between two rocks. Truly between a rock and a hard place. However no one was hurt and a great time was had by all.

First was Angels Landing in Zions National Park. 5 miles round trip. But some major elevation gain and some holding onto a chain to not fall over 1000 feet straight down to your death. She smiled and loved it! I was so proud.

Next up was Bryce Canyon, It was a nice cool down minus the lack of air for Jbizzle, but with 5 more miles she totally was a trooper seeing she couldn’t breathe at the 8000 foot elevation mark.

That night we camped and slept under the stars and watched all the shooting stars and looked into the milky way trying not to think that a snake or scorpion could be our new cuddle buddies that night, but the next morning we were right on the trail to play in some very narrow and wet slot canyons. Maybe she was a bit spooked at first, but in the end she was throwing ninja moves up cliffs that I couldn’t even get up! I was so impressed!

I saved the final six mile hike to a beautiful desert waterfall that we could just relax, ice bath and build sand castles. All happened and I am pretty sure we secured ourselves a spot in the 2013 Sand Castle Building Invitationals

Well and in final I think that our engagement photo at the Salt Lake Temple can sum up how wonderful the weekend went.

Real talk time. (Uh, I hope you don’t mind me posting this, girl.)

Up until very recently, I had never seen myself as very strong or even in very good shape. Sure, I felt like a badass when I ran 10+ miles, but I guess that never felt like “this is who it am.” Does that make sense?

When I was in Phoenix I took an Olympic lifting class with Celeste’s coach, Matt. We did snatches, clean and jerks and front squats – things I don’t do nearly enough to be very good. After a particularly shallow and frustrating jerk, Matt came over and said something along the lines of “you’re a great athlete who just doesn’t do these movements often.” Wait, me?

Anyway, the point here is I do feel strong and athletic now. I don’t feel like an imposter at CrossFit or strength class now. I’ve come to realize that I don’t have to be the strongest (because damn, so many of you are way stronger than me) to be an athlete. I already am one.

Chubby young Allie is freaking out right now, believe me.


Indy Mini Recap

It was a race I had said for weeks I was going to just cheer on and not run, simply because I had not been running much since the Marathon.

It was a race that comes a weekend before the official end to DietBet challenge.  And being away from home would mean eating out all the time.

It was a race that I was going to alone for the first time (as I have always raced with my group of local running friends) and specifically with my runner partner Jen.

It turned out to be a race that I felt full of life and energy the entire time!  It was probably my best run ever in terms of my body/mind both feeling good. 

I think between only drinking water for almost 2 months now I am hydrated.  I think that by eating mindfully I am fueling myself more proper than ever before and that made a huge difference.

I think that having Nava there to run with me was also great.  I am so used to running with a partner  that I feel very comfortable racing along side someone else.  And Nava was a good sport as I joked around (sometimes at her expense) and kept us both moving.

I proved to myself that I could maintain healthy eating while away.  Which in the past would have been harder for me than the 13.1 miles. 

I got to add a super cool checkered ribbon medal to the Wall of Awesome and it stands out quite nicely!

But most of all there is a group of people “the internet” who are just as friendly, warm, inviting, funny, crazy and awkward as you might expect them all to be.  Its hard to explain how you can meet them for the first time but because you have been following along in glimpses of their lives on here you feel like you have always known each other.  Sure some are shorter than you may have imagined but then some are much taller (Shortmom).  About the only thing your not sure of is what their voices might sound like - kind of the opposite of listening to your favorite DJ on the radio and wondering what they might look like. 

In any case, if you are ever able to meet up with one/some of them at an event or race or meetup - please do.  You will be so glad you did, I know I am :)

This was a great race and a great weekend.

P.S. A very special thank you to jBizz and her family for being such nice hosts and opening up their home to everyone!

Until next time….


Happy New Years Runblrs!

800 miles and 200th run when I got home

Getting ready

Cooking with my wonderful man (that spinach dip)

Black car rides in the snow

Norwegian chicken (Jbizz)

Explaining tumblrs to tumblr-less Laura

Champagne jigglers

Cards against humanity

And kisses!

Favorite Friday!

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these.

Text-only posts are where it’s at, folks.

4 of my favorite things this week:

  1. I had a fabulous time driving all over creation and adventuring with friends new and old, but I am oh-so-very happy to be home. Twenty four days is a lot of time to be living out of a car. I am quite pleased to have my bed, my puppy, and my blender back in my life. #priorities
  2. Gillian and I, against all odds, do not [yet] want to kill each other. After spending an insane amount of time in close proximity to one another, we thought it would be inevitable. Typically, our relationship functions best from a distance, given our polarized personality types. I think there’s been some personal growth here, guys. I’m impressed with us.
  3. Snail mail. Sending and receiving, few things make me happier. Mail boxes (and USPS employees) rejoice, for I am stamp-happy today.
  4. COFFEE CUBES. Don’t hate. It’s the little things, y'all.

3 of my favorite Tumblrs this week:

  • Becky, because she’s legit the sweetest thing since sugar. And she does all the talking so I don’t have to.
  • Jason, because of reasons.
  • JBizz, because of wine-induced video texts and posts.

2 of my favorite songs this week:

1 of my favorite inspirations this week:

  • Toby started his Tumblr after Monday night’s Do Life 5k in Louisville. He’s lost 50 pounds, is marathoner and two-time Ironman, and he’s currently training for IM Louisville for the third year in a row.

Rock n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon 2012

BF and I woke bright and early at 4am to get ready to head downtown for the race (which started at 6:30am?!?!?)…met up with some tumblrs for a quick photo shoot, and we went off to our respective corrals. The BF left with ashamedtosay and jbizzle, I went with Claire and Anna.

Things got off to a pretty quick start…I tried some sport beans right at the beginning, pretty gross, won’t be having them again unless I get them for free. I left Claire and Anna right at the start…

I wasn’t really sure what my plan was going to be. I had kept up with training kind of ok (have been concentrating more on the TRI this Saturday)…I had gotten in my 12-mile long run, but missed a bunch of the long runs leading up to it…but as soon as we started, I was feeling pretty good, so I decided to just keep running and walk at the water stations.

I was a little disappointed by the course, but it was still fun and exciting to run on the streets that I have driven on my entire life. Most people were complaining about the heat…but it was a good 20 degrees cooler than I have been running in, so it felt pretty good to me.

I made a point to stay hydrated…at least 2 cups of water each time, and always gatorade when it was offered. Just kept chugging along…for a while I thought that I might beat my PR (from Soaring Wings last year), but as it got warmer, I started to slow down a bit: my water breaks started taking a bit longer…

I realized sub 2 wasn’t gonna happen this time, so I took my foot off the gas for the last few miles and crossed the finish line in 2:11:17…pretty respectable in my book. 

But this race really wasn’t about me…it was pretty unmemorable actually, I just got up early and ran, and it was over. This race was really about Justin getting across the finish line. I had been getting texts from him throughout the race, about how much pain he was in. After I finished, Claire called me, and she told me to walk back and find him, and walk him in. I found him walking with jbizzle, tears in his eyes…we held hands and took it the rest of the way.

You can read about all of that right here.

And then we had a crazy BBQ on jbizzles roof that included much drinking (more than was needed…especially after a long stressful day) and Claire falling asleep on a couch. Many friends were made and kept, and as we all gradually go back to our respective homes, we all kind of wish that we would all just stay here in Chicago.

At least I do.

bizzyinindy  asked:

Education in this country is broken. As a CPS teacher currently walking the picket lines, I am completely discouraged by the state of our government & the way that they are handling Edu. I feel like they see progress in other countries, but refuse to try & replicate it. Instead, they create their own policies that have very little data (if any at all) supporting them. Blame is to be set on the educators and none to be given to the environment children grow up in. Reform should start w/ equity.

Before I close up shop for the night I just feel like I need to acknowledge this message I received earlier today in response to an article about Finland’s educational system. Reform should absolutely start with equity. I worked in a low income school last  year and it was discouraging to see how those teachers were expected to be miracle workers. It’s frustrating to watch politicians ignore the real issues. I wish I had the answers.

In the meantime, keep fighting the good fight. I think I speak for a lot of folks when I say we are proud of what you all are doing in Chicago and we appreciate you. It’s high time we stop blaming teachers for everything that is wrong with education in this country.


Bieber Burps for Bizz!

It’s funny ‘cause I did like 30, and then I saw Jess’ challenge to record some. SO it took me 7 attempts to find a camera placement that captured me and not the floor or the wall. 6 recordings failed (only 5ish burps in each, but STILL that’s 30 right there that eluded my flipcam).

Then I finally got an okay angle and recorded 9 more? Before I died. So because of J-BIZZ, I just did 70 more burpees than I planned to do tonight. Which may not be much to some of you, but it is to Jello-Arms right here.

Thanks for making me do all the burpees, Jess, even though you apparently hate doing burpees yourself!

I'ma be your ooooone Gill, you’ll be my oooone Bizz, always doin’ burpees for YOU. I'ma tell you one time, girl I love, girl I love youuuuu.

Beer of the night takes us down a different carbonated path tonight. In recognition of JBizzle’s Sober February I’ve decided to feature this cold can of refreshing Dr Pepper Diet Cherry Vanilla soda.

That’s thirteen syllables of flavor my friends.

You think only beer has multiple complex flavors with hints of this and a touch of that? Then step into a world of natural and artificial flavors and caramel coloring.

And JBizz, remember this isn’t just for happy hour. Or breakfast. Dr Pepper time is 10, 2 or 4 o'clock!

Thursday Things

You’ve got questions, I’ve got answers.

Rule 1: Repost the rules
Rule 2: Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post and then make 11 new ones
Rule 3: Tag 11 people and link them to your post
Rule 4: Let them know they’ve been tagged

Chrysti’s 11 questions:

(01) Do you have any tattoos, and if so, what are their meanings?

  • I have a Deathly Hallows tattoo on my left foot. Means I’m the Master of Death, y'all. I’m not opposed to getting more, but I’m too indecisive SLASH can’t think of anything else I would be comfortable having permanently etched on my body. Harry Potter love is eternal.

(02) Are you doing as a career what you thought you’d be doing when you were a kid?

  • I’m currently funemployed (read: miserably seeking gainful employment). BUT: I couldn’t have imagined falling into my chosen field as a kid. Mostly because I didn’t know it existed. I was am also indecisive. Things I wanted to be: helicopter pilot, baker (shocking, right?), Egyptologist, translator. When I got older, I always saw myself working for an NGO in Latin America. (I had a love affair with Spanish, but only orally. I hated literary analysis in Spanish, as I do in English.) Now I play with satellite imagery, map land-cover, model species distributions, and monitor changes in forests/vegetation. Don’t ever ask me why the sky is blue or a sunset is red unless you want me to give you an annoyingly scientific answer.

(03) Introvert or extrovert?

  • lololol. I am a textbook example of an introvert. For every hour I spend with people, I typically require about two hours to myself. Please see here for further instruction on interacting with me.

(04) Does your partner or best friend have the same fitness and health habits as you?

  • Eh, I wouldn’t say the same, but Anna and Claire are close. I tend to be fickle with my real life friendships, and being in a transitional life phase (did I really just say that?), I’m not sure I have a “best” friend at the moment. Kelly kicks ass on the daily, and she’s my own particular brand of crazy, though. Most of my college friends aren’t that into health/fitness.

(05) Do you like running in the rain?

  • YES. It helps keep me cool, because I suck at doing that on my own. It’s not fun when I don’t prepare for the weather and end up running in glasses, though. Then I can’t see, and I just get annoyed.

(06) What’s your favorite dessert?

  • Is this a real question? Is “all of them” an acceptable answer? No? Rude. Frozen yogurt (original tart) + carob chips (or dark/semi-sweet chocolate in a pinch) + rainbow sprinkles (again, chocolate in a pinch) + strawberries. I don’t usually like candy in my yogurt, nor do I usually like flavored yogurts. I make an occasional exception for coconut and/or pumpkin if they’re tart enough, though. Oreos also make cameos from time to time. As far as baked goods go, cookies > brownies > cakes.

(07) Do you do a good job of giving yourself credit for what you’ve accomplished?

  • I think so. I will say, though, that I don’t believe I’ve done anything that’s incredibly physically impressive. Mentally? That’s another story. I’m not very strong, and I’m certainly not fast by any stretch of the imagination, but I don’t have it in me to quit. I’m lucky in that I don’t injure easily (ironic, because I’m currently injured) and that I was blessed with an incredibly stubborn mind. That coupling makes for pretty enjoyable training, which in turn leads to fun races. I’m all about fun.

(08) Least favorite household chore?

  • Cleaning floors. Sweeping is fine, but I hate mopping and vacuuming. Give me dishes or give me death!

(09) Where do you want to go for your next vacation?

  • With people? Seattle. I have some people out there that need visiting, and I just love it. Without people? Appalachian Trail. Or somewhere equally as serene and nature-y and people-free.

(10) Water with or without ice?

  • Without. Almost always without. I prefer hot or tepid water. I even prefer my seltzer tepid.

(11) Last book you read for pleasure?

  • The last book I finished for pleasure was A Game of Thones. It took me foreverrrr. I started it in September, read about 80 pages, and then restarted it sometime earlier this year. I couldn’t find my groove until the last 300 pages or so (out of 800+). Currently, I’m reading The Crystal Cave, as was recommended to me by my father. I don’t particularly enjoy Arthurian fiction, but I’m 200 pages in, and it’s decent, I guess. Strange first person narrative, though.


My questions:

  1. If you could only save one item (non-living) from your burning home, what would it be?
  2. If you could attain one skill you don’t already possess and be able to execute it flawlessly at the push of a button, what would it be?
  3. If you owned a CB radio, what would your handle be?
  4. You’re replacing a roll of toilet paper: does the paper roll over or under?
  5. At long last, someone invents “the dream VCR.” This machine allows you to tape an entire evening’s worth of your own dreams, which you can then watch at your leisure. However, the inventor of the dream VCR will only allow you to use this device of you agree to a strange caveat: When you watch your dreams, you must do so with your family and your closest friends in the same room. They get to watch your dreams along with you. And if you don’t agree to this, you can’t use the dream VCR. Would you still do this? (Stolen from Chuck Klosterman.)
  6. Top three favorite scents?
  7. You’re going on a road trip: aside from mix CDs (always a given), what are three essentials you require?
  8. Which fictional character do you most closely identify with?
  9. Do you have any hidden talents? If so, what are they?
  10. What was your best Halloween costume?
  11. You have an unfortunate run-in with a very angry genie, and he forces you to choose one of your five senses to sacrifice. Which do you give up?

Tagging: JBizz, KC, funnyrunner (what’s your name, woman?!), Captain, Emily, Mollie, Charla, Nicole, Ellen, Jessy, & Wayne.