Hey guys. Remember how today, when you're reading this, is my birthday? Well it is—I'm 27 today! And it's weird—mostly because it hasn't felt at all (as of this writing at 9:34 p.m. Monday) like it was about to be my birthday. Between Easter hoopla and all the other things going on this month, I haven't had time yet to slow down and think really about what this year should look like. What this past year looked like, what I've done, and what I hope to do next.

Some parts are simple, of course. At age 26, I started and finished marathon training and yoga teacher training. I became a marathoner and a certified yoga teacher! How crazy. How cool. How much to do, when you think about it and all that goes into each, in just the space between two birthdays.

But coming back to the point (it is Training for Tuesday after all), all this plus the information I shared last week PLUS the fact that we're less than two weeks away from the bridal shower I'm throwing, all have me feeling terrible that I couldn't really get myself together in time to write the post I wanted to write today. But as I was thinking about how I would get something on the blog today, something worthwhile, I remembered a post I wrote a few years ago. A post few of you likely saw as my blog was just a baby, as was my identity as a runner. I was just 6 months into this wild and unexpected and gruesome and amazing journey and could not imagine then that I'd be where—and who—I am today.

I want to share that post today—as I grovel for forgiveness after phoning it in to my own linkup—because even now, 21 months later, it's still true. It's why I run.

Before I ran, the time I spent outside was largely at the mercy of other friends who had to be pried out the door for adventures, patio cocktails, and hikes. Now I never need a reason to spend hours with the great outdoors — just my running shoes.

Long, solo runs with nothing but my favorite playlist have replaced brooding in my apartment, venting over booze and bad food, and aimless drives as methods to clear my mind and lift my mood.

There are few better ways to merge charity with looking after my own health.

Every step I take is proof that I can do anything if I care enough to start, and to keep trying.

Each time I feel like giving up, I learn the depths of my strength and willpower.

I never knew how strong my mind could be until I started running.

Even though I've been working on meditation for years, it tends to come so easily on a run. Running is the only time where I truly feel stillness and silence in my mind.

Each injury or running pain is a chance for me to pull back, reflect, listen to my body, and regroup.

I have never been more aware of and in tune with my body as I am now that I run.

The running community is one of the kindest, warmest, most welcoming groups of people I've ever encountered.

Feeling welcomed by the running community has reinforced to me the importance of removing toxic influences from my life.

Running has shown me who in my life is waiting to see me fail, and who is cheering for me louder than I ever knew.

As a goal-oriented person, I have never set — and smashed — as many personal goals as I have in the last six months. Case in point: At Sunday's race, I was outwardly hoping to just break my PR. Inside, I was dying to get below 28:00. You know what happened there.

Every mile I run is a mile I never thought I would conquer, and shows me how capable I never knew I was.

Every time I add a run to my calendar and watch my mileage grow, I'm overcome with a sense of accomplishment few things in my life have brought me in the past.

Each run I set out on tests me, challenges me, and rewards me all at once.

Runner's high is real.

As is the high when Boston Marathoners tell you that you "have what it takes to be great."

I never thought I would be able to honestly say the words: "I'm in training for a half marathon." BOOM.

Running forces me to maintain other healthy habits, especially those that have been challenges for me all my life.

If I hadn't started running, I would still be a pack-a-day smoker.

For these and for so many more reasons, I run to be the person I feel like I was supposed to become.

Now for those of you who are better at planning posts than me, here's the part where you link up your posts! In case you're new to this party, you can get the details here, grab your button right here, and link up below. Don't forget to stop by some fellow linkers and spread that support and encouragement around like sunshine.


  1. Happy happy birthday!! Wishing you a year full of all great things!! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

  2. Happy Birthday Alyssa! I hadn't read that post but I'm so glad you shared it again! Running is such an incredible journey!

  3. Happy Birthday!!! I love introspection and thinking about the meaning of life, and rethinking everything on birthdays, so I hope you do make time for that post. I also love hearing other people's motivation to keep at it, and now is a good time for me to rethink the "why" and really dive back into my own health.

  4. Happy, happy birthday beautiful friend. I hope it is fabulous and wonderful and full of all the sparkles. I love this post you shared, so thank you for resharing it. Such smart words and truthful sentiments.

  5. If you can't phone it in on your birthday, when can you? Happy Happy!

  6. I loved this phone-in on your Birthday! It's a post I've never read before and it speaks so much to the amazing meditative and strengthening powers found on the open road. Runner's High is real!

  7. happiest of happy days to you my friend! i really hope this is your best birthday yet. love this post just as much now as the original :) i love that it's still true for you.

  8. This right here "Every step I take is proof that I can do anything if I care enough to start, and to keep trying." Just yes!!!! Happy Birthday!!!!! I wish amazing things for you this year!!!!

  9. True almost 2 years ago (really?! That long?), true today. No, truer today. It's honestly mind blowing to me to think of how much you've done since you first wrote those words!
    I hope you had the happiest of days today! Can't wait to celebrate you in a few short days <3

  10. Happy birthday!!! Hope you had the best day ever! Cheers to another great year for you!


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