Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Tuesday workout: 6 miles with 4 x 1200 (at 8:00-ish pace with 400m)
Wednesday workout: sweet, glorious rest

Hi friends, I have exciting news for you: I finally figured out where I'm going to school this fall!


I'm off to this pretty li'l place:

You mean you don't immediately recognize it?! Shame on you! Although if you're semi-literature and bothered to read this post's title (I wouldn't blame you if you didn't), you already know...

... that I'm heading to Eugene, Oregon this fall! I'm wicked excited.

You may be wondering why it took me so long to make this decision when U of O was my top choice to begin with. Well, I could go on and on about it, but I'll just say that I was unexpectedly admitted to two additional schools on April 14, one of which was by far the "best-ranked" of the schools I applied to. I admit that I allowed myself to be seduced by those wily rankings. Never mind the fact that being admitted on April 14 without funding meant I was obviously at the very, very bottom of their admitted list. It still counts!

Anyway, there was a lot of agonizing and hair-pulling before I realized I was trying to make the "better" program (and all the others, at one point or another) fit what I want instead of going with the program that already fits perfectly. That's Oregon!

I think my biggest difficulty in all of this was that I was so desperate to avoid making a hasty decision that I asked anyone and everyone (with a graduate degree) for their advice and hounded millions of students in each program about their experiences. Talk about opinion overload. The many people I spoke with had very strong views on where I should go to school, but there was almost no agreement on what's most important in choosing a graduate program. Some told me to just "go with the best-ranked program you can get into." Others told me funding should be the priority and rankings are bullshit. Yet others said I should choose the one MA program I applied to and reapply to PhD programs next year. I had so many arguments running through my head I didn't know what to do. Don't get me wrong, I'm lucky to be able to benefit from the experience of those who have been there, but it sort of made me lose sight of what I wanted. But hey, at least I can be confident I made an informed decision!

So, Eugene. I've never been there, but I hear it's a very Jeano-friendly city (also, fun fact: I'm named after my Grandpa's middle name which is, you guessed it, Eugene!). I see exactly one mountain in photos of the city, which hurts my Alaskan soul, but that's one more mountain than that dump New York City and I put up with that shit hole for two whole years! Also, I'll only be an hour from both mountains and the coast, and I hear Eugene is an outdoorsy place so I should be able to get my wilderness fix. And let's not forget the Eugene Marathon!! Eugene 2014, anyone? Okay, it would be naive of me to say I'll be running it next year because, hello, grad school, but maybe someday... 

[Also, good luck to everyone racing Eugene this weekend!]

Thanks to everyone for putting up with my grad school hysteria these past few months. It's something I've been working towards since I graduated from undergrad in 2010 and it's crazy to think it's finally happening! And THANK GOD I've got one less thing to think about. My brain hurts.


Hey, running! I'm resting today. I am very happy about this. I survived my first week back post-Norway but I was so ready for a day off. Surprisingly, though, I somehow felt better after yesterday's speed workout than I did at any other time this past week. How does that make sense? Body, you are so strange.

My calves were REALLY sore from Thursday until yesterday (Tuesday), and Monday's seven miles may have been the hardest this entire training cycle (side note: although I understand their reasoning, why can't the Hansons give me a rest day after a long run like every other training plan?!). I think the best word to describe that run is "heavy." You know what I mean.

Consequently, I was NOT eagerly anticipating yesterday's 1200s, to put it mildly. My calves felt like they were about to snap and I just wanted to drown in a bucket of buttered popcorn and watch Breaking Bad (note to self: buy popcorn! I keep forgetting) next to the sweet remote-controlled fireplace at the house I'm watching. But noooo, the Hansons decided I was going to run around an ice rink. Fine. Jerks.

Because the Hansons know me better than I know myself, my run ended up being pretty awesome. It took an embarrassingly long time for my calves to loosen up but once they did, I was ready to run fast (FOR ME). I only get to run faster than a snail's pace twice a week and Tuesdays are the only day I get to feel really out of breath, so I made it count.

I ended up running my repeats at slightly faster than an 8:00 pace (I was aiming for 8:30-oops). I even had to hold myself back! I've come a long way since that first horrendous speed workout. I think the best advice I've got for anyone, ever is to NEVER DO SPEEDWORK ON A TREADMILL. Shit's painful.

And, of course, just when I've gotten the hang of speedwork, the Hansons are forcing me to move on to  longer intervals. This is what's on tap for next week and beyond:

Those dates don't make any sense.

Look at next Tuesday - 6 x 1 mi - eek! Granted, I've been running my tempos at around 9:30 so the pace isn't a big deal, but now I've got six miles of speed in each speed workout instead of three. So many miles.

Well, that's all I've got for today. All you Eugene marathoners, be sure to take plenty of pictures so I can check out my new home!

  • Have you ever been to Eugene? Tell me all about it.
  • Are you a "go with your gut" kinda person, or do you over-think things?
  • What's your favorite interval workout? "No intervals" is an acceptable answer.


  1. Yay Yay YAY! For making a decision and for it being Oregon! I am going to Eugene in just a couple weeks for a conference at the U of O (I really wish it were this weekend of the marathon, though). Want me to check out anything there for you? Specifically, I can make it my mission to check out all the good running trails in town. How's that?

    1. YES PLEASE! The answer about anything Eugene-related, from hereon out, is always yes! I'd love to see some more pictures of the area!

  2. Hooray! Congrats on making such a MAJOR decision! I'm happy to hear you don't like NYC either. I've only been there a handful of times, but that place smells, is full of germs and there are FAR too many people all up in my personal space bubble. I think you'll be happy in Oregon! Looks pretty with lots of space to get your runnin' on!

    1. Yes, a fellow NYC-hater! I despised that place. I had a lot of fun while living there, but that was in SPITE of it being such a lame city. Or maybe just a city. I haven't figured out if I hate New York or just bigger cities. I think it's just New York.

  3. Yay congrats on finally making a decision!!! I bet that feels like huge relief!! I bet you will love it there!

    1. I certainly hope so! I can't wait to hit up the local jogging trails-they look nice from the few photos I've seen!

  4. Whoooooo! Congrats. What a relief! Any chance you're gonna tell us what you do/will do, or does that just add to the suspense/mystery/allure of Jeano? :)

    Driven past, but never stopped in, Eugene.

    I try to give myself some good options, then ultimately choose with my "gut". Ever read Blink, by Malcolm Gladwell? You should.

    I like 400s. They are...tidy. One lap, boom, done. But longer, slightly slower, intervals are better for my current goals. Decisions, decisions.

    1. Ahaha, I don't know that anyone's ever used the words "suspense/mystery/allure" in reference to me before. You mean, what's my subject of interest? Economics. Specifically, development. More specifically, demography (fertility/mortality/urbanization/population aging/etc.) as it relates to economic development.

      I've been wanting to read Blink for a while now, but just haven't gotten around to it. I read part of "Outliers," which was great but I had to give it back to its owner before I finished it, so I'm pretty sure I'd be a fan of Blink. Soon!

      400s seem like they'd be nice, but the one time I've done them in the past 3+ years was on a treadmill, which did NOT go well. I think they'd be great around a track, though.

  5. Congrats on your Eugene decision! Having just been there for the first time, I can confidently say I think you'll love the area. Don't know squat about the school, but you've got that covered, I'm sure ;) Hey, maybe Eugene Marathon next year?