Running and Reading: October 31 – November 6, 2016

1) Runners World published a special report titled “Running While Female,” which sheds light on the frequency and type of harassment that women experience while running and includes a survey comparing both mens’ and womens’ experiences with mid-run harassment. Not surprisingly, the results couldn’t be further apart: 43% of women have been harassed mid-run compared to just 4% of men. Social media comments on Runners World’s Facebook account as well as those of Fitness Magazine and New York Daily News indicate that some men have had their eyes truly opened by this report while others continue to blame those being harassed for their own harassment or assault.

2) The Washington Post‘s staff writer on environmental policy and climate change wrote a piece that is as indulgent in its criticism as it is in its righteousness on the overuse of an American indulgence: ranch dressing. While I hate to be a traitor to my home-sweet-home state of Nebraska, I agree that its less-than-creative debut at swanky, over-priced restaurants has gone too far (the first time I pay over $5 for a dish that uses ranch dressing is the day I have a true crisis of conscience). However, and I know getting our collective attention on the important and pressing matter of climate change is a challenge, picking a fight with skeptics by placing ranch dressing in a line-up of culprits for our shifting global weather patterns is sort of like blaming marathoners for a global banana shortage.

3) It’s often really hard for me not to idolize motherhood when I feel like I’ve had a sufficient helping at the singles table (except I could use a little more travel). So when I read about women who regret having children, I have mixed reactions of relief that I don’t have to rush through the goals I still want to accomplish and confusion about what these women think we single ladies do all day long that makes them so sure their lives would have been more fulfilling alone. Because it’s not always wining and dining with handsome strangers, 4-star penthouses in far-off cities, or nights in sequins with cosmos (or else I’m doing it wrong).

Photo Credit: Buzzfeed.com

4) I may just on the cusp of being called a Millennial (I did graduate high school at the turn of the century and the new millennium, after all), so I get a tad defensive when someone somewhere yet again blames Millennials for ruining “traditional” norms due to some mundane trend or movement they can’t keep up with. In light of this article from The Atlantic with the click-bait-y title “Why Do Millennials Hate Groceries?” (are ad dollars so sparse right now that throwing the word “millennial” into the title of an article that ultimately concludes a shift in food consumerism is not just happening because millennials are doing it, is the only way to get revenue?), I think I speak for all 20-34 year-old’s when I say: I don’t hate groceries. Like, at allFollow-up: Buzzfeed picked up on the fact that my generation is slightly offended for being blamed for yet another mundane socioeconomic trend when prior generations are responsible for the current world order.  

5) Virginia is for oysters? Absolutely! November is Virginia Oyster Month, so that means I will be using this Virginia Oyster guide from the Virginia Tourism Bureau to be looking for an oyster festival to keep my beachy mind at ease during these cold months. Man, I love living on the East Coast!

6) People used to tell me that I am like Robin Sherbatsky on How I Met Your MotherI was always the independent, ambitious one who eventually chooses love over career only to end up with a bite mark on my ass from that choice later. So, reading her open letter “Showing My Scars” and her battle with ovarian cancer only solidifies her as one of my favorite actresses, not only for the genuineness she brings to her roles but her off-screen image, too.

7) Preferring a good TV binge over live broadcasting, I’ve really gotten into catching new Monday night episodes of NBC’s Timeless, which follows a team comprised of a soldier whose melancholy is equally sexy, a smart but awkwardly relatable historian (whose role as “Blah Blah” on How I Met Your Mother has me in hysterics every single time), and a friendly-cool but mysterious employee of a super-secret mercenary who built a time machine, the prototype of which has landed in the hands of a debately untrustworthy guy who is trying to change the course of history for some as-of-now unknown reason. So, I’m super excited that it has been approved for more episodes in a time slot that is prime TV real estate. Now if only they’d stop airing The Voice so freaking much…

My favorite part of the river. I already miss it.
My favorite part of the river. I already miss it.

8) Capital Weather Gang, who is one of if not THE trusted weather authority in the DC area, informed us that October 2016 was the warmest in 9 years and the driest in 16 for the DC area. This fact is not lost on me as my beloved happy place, the Key Bridge Boathouse, was open until Halloween this year instead of closing in mid-October. Given that paddle-boarding is a real cross-training exercise for me I take this as a major blessing, but I know some people are upset that we haven’t had many of those lovely crispy-cold October days.

Photo Credit: Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Race
Photo Credit: Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Race

9) Running at night time is one of my favorite thrills, but getting through the Daylight Savings blackout that happens every fall can be hard if you are new to running or have a spring marathon goal. Marathon Nation has some basic but tried-and-true ideas for how to sustain your fitness level through the winter months when running in the dark seems to be our only option. When you’re done with that, check out my May 2016 post on why evening running is much more bad ass and fun than morning running!

10) To close on a good note, I am super excited to announce that I’ve been selected to be a 2017 Credit Union Cherry Blossom (CUCB) 10-Mile Run Race Ambassador! This race is a spring running rite of passage for 15,000 runners in the Washington, DC area, and has attracted scores of professional runners over the years, including Meb Keflezighi, Bill Rodgers, and Joan Benoit Samuelson. Over the coming months, I’ll be writing about my training and contributing to the CUCB blog, so stay tuned!

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