Health, San Francisco

My First 5k


I forget when it was, maybe two months ago, when Ryan said he felt like running. I’d been running on and off at the gym, or mixing it into my weekly workout schedule here and there. But I never felt like a particularly accomplished runner. Nor did I really enjoy it, unless I was listening to Major Lazer or running while traveling (my favorite travel memories involve running for some reason).

Anyways, to be supportive I got the Ease into 5k iPhone app, which I thought sounded suspiciously like a knockoff of Couch to 5k (turns out it’s made by the same developers). It gets you going by mixing in running + walking. Some time passed, and I felt like I became a more consistent runner. Still, I didn’t feel the fire. So after a month of running I suggested that we do a race. We signed up for the Giants Race (benefiting Project Open Hand), which I picked because finishing the last leg in AT&T Stadium sounded awesome. Also, garlic fries! Lou Seal!

I thought about blogging about my 5k training, but to be honest I didn’t really do anything all that spectacular. Just ran 3-4 times a week, and did whatever the app told me to.

I wasn’t set to finish the app by the time of our race, so I felt nervous. But while we were in Santa Cruz (the week before the race), we stumbled onto the 10K Wharf to Wharf race. We ran with the 50,000+ crowd for about three miles and then broke off. I realized then that our 5k would be just fine.


As part of our swag bag they gave us cool shirts, but also these really scary bobbleheads.

I won’t bore you with the details of my race, but I will say that running in a mob of 8,000 men women children and strollers was a HOT MESS. I was walking/dodging strollers for the first half of the race at least. They had corrals for the different paces, but it wasn’t enforced at all (hello strollers and kids in the sub 7 minute mile section???).

All in all, it was fairly interesting. Look how happy I look crossing the finish line?



I was totally listening to Blurred Lines.



Yea, I’m kinda tempted to get the first one on a mug.


Afterwards we got beers and hung out.

Screen shot 2013-08-11 at 2.46.59 PM


And then the results came in later that day (33:05 minutes, 10:40 pace). I feel pretty good about finishing 1500th out of 8,000 people (even though that is hard for my brain to visualize). I think Ryan was 3 minutes faster, and 800th. Wild the difference a few minutes can make.

Toying around with the idea of doing a 10k, although I’m not really sure if I want to. Because that would take actual training. :p

Food, San Francisco, Travel

The Road to Taco Bell: My 7.84 Mile Drunken Hike to the Most Beautiful Taco Bell in the World

Friends who follow me on Instagram may have noticed a few pics from last weekend chronicling my treacherous hike on the Taco Bell Trail.

Hold on, let me explain myself.

About a month ago I was at a friend’s pool party reading the latest issue of Lucky Peach. The topic of the quarter was travel, and I was entranced by a great 4 page story about the author’s emotional attachment to Taco Bell. He was an artist, and loved Taco Bell so much that he created a Taco Bell drawing club. Yeah, it’s what it sounds like. The story ended with the author’s description of the best Taco Bell he’s ever been to. It’s in Pacifica, which is about 20 minutes from SF.



My ex-coworker and close friend* Cody loves Taco Bell as much as I do, and indeed moreso, so I sent him a snap of just the story headline. He thought it sounded awesome, and mentioned that he’s always wanted to write a similar story about the one in Pacifica… I knew then that a trip to this Taco Bell was in order.

(*This is a true statement, and I only mention it because you know, I’m not a weirdo that just texts everybody about Taco Bell.)
The timing was great because my friend Pravisti lives in Pacifica! I weaseled my way into her weekend with a few strategically placed texts, and then it was on.

Ryan and I hopped on the BART to Pacifica, and we spent the night doing Pacifica type things with our host, such as being cold and eating burgers while spotting important techie people at trendy family friendly restaurants. We drank some beers, and I bought some canned cocktails from the liquor store (“Manhattan” and “Long Island Iced Tea”) that… when push came to shove, I was honestly too terrified to drink. Then we watched Honey Boo Boo for about 4 hours. I’m not kidding.

The next day we went for a run in the morning (training for a 5k).20130718-233652.jpg


Then we hung out, watched some show about cat whisperers and had some more beer. Later in the afternoon it was game time for Taco Bell. That was when Pravi finally looked up the details and we saw that it was 3 and a half miles to Taco Bell. Walking there would take at least an hour. Getting back would take an hour. SHIT.

We thought about driving there, but you know, I had this dream in my mind of HIKING THE COAST to Taco Bell. After some conversation we said hell, let’s do it. Seven miles be damned.



We begin upon the road to Taco Bell with a dog that is 50 years old in dog years.


The hills kind of sucked.



But getting down was scarier. I am good at going up, but not going down. So I sat on my butt and slid down the other side of the hill. Ugh.



After several buttslides, and after passing several beaches where I just wanted to STOP and chillax, we still had to cross an annoying waterway. I was worried that our dog mascot might die while we tried to ford this little stream. He was very skittish. Also, there was a band filming a music video nearby on the beach, so things were complicated at this intersection.



Hey! Do you see the Taco Bell? No, me neither. But it’s there.



It is so beautiful! I’m so happy! Also, Taco Bell is hiring.




This Taco Bell is wonderful because it’s right on the beach. Right where surfers are surfing. When they are feeling tired of their surfer ways, they can sidle up to the walk up window and order without dragging sand across Taco Bell’s sacred floors. It is a beautiful thing.



Intense discussion about the Crunchwrap Supreme.



Victory. Eight variations on the same idea.

After 1000 calories, we hiked back. This time we took a longer and less rigorous route.


Success! 7.84 miles and 3 and a half hours later. This is living, people.

It goes without saying, but if you’re ever in Pacifica, check out this Taco Bell. Tell me how much you love it.





Music for Your Twerk Out


 I don’t talk about working out terribly often, but I’m a gym rat.

Lately my routine is heading to the gym during my lunch break, running about three miles, showering, and then getting my slobbery mess self back to the office where I chow down my lunch in front of the screen. It’s really really nice. My mood is ten times better, and I love getting my workout out of the way so that it doesn’t cut into my personal time after work.

I don’t like running all that much, but it really makes me exhausted, and when I’ve only got thirty minutes, it does the trick. One thing that has made running almost… *enjoyable* has been Major Lazer.  

And now there is a Major Lazer Workout Mix. YES! It’s on POTATOwillEATyou, Skrillex/Diplo/A-Trak’s YouTube channel. Thanks to my sister in cynicism Michelle for tossing it my way. It’s fantastic. Listening to this mix basically FEELS like you’re already running.

Favorites include:

19:30 Diplo and M83 – Express City (Benzi Short Redo)

22:23 Action (Richie Beretta 7th Grade Dance Remix)

24:25 Alesia and DJ Snake – Bird Machine





Staged shot at the end. Everything is sore.

My roommate invited me to go climbing with him today at Mission Cliffs, so… why not? I took the intro class to safety and technique (a whole hour long what a value!), and then spent a couple of hours switching off climbing with my roommate. It was definitely more fun and meditative than I’d expected, and it seems like there’s a lot to learn. Maybe I’ll go back. Maybe. It wasn’t until I was at the top of one of the climbs that I remembered that I was afraid of heights, hahaha.

Anyways, I have to stop this post now because my thumbs and fingers feel like fat grapes so swollen that they might explode. That’s a quality sport!


Health, Life

Well, the thirty days have passed, and I amazingly finished my 30 day challenge! It was not without a few struggles, however, so here’s a quick recap:

Monday was class #27. I was already exhausted from doing a double the day before, and the heat was terrible. It was bad even by yoga standards,but with my stopped up nose I felt like I was suffocating. Lying on the floor I realized that the entire situation was absurd.  I left class for the first time ever. When I came back 5 minutes later and stepped on my mat I started crying, I just couldn’t control it.Not a high point, but I made it through to the end.

Tuesday I did a double (Classes 28 + 29). Got through it okay, but it was straight to bed afterwards.

Wednesday was my last class. It was uneventful but happy, as my friends had agreed to come and do the class with me. Great stuff, and there was a round of sweaty hugs after it was all over.

Now that it’s over, I think I will keep going 3-4 times a week, in addition to the gym/biking, until the classes on my card run out. After that I’ll have to reevaluate whether I want to continue doing this craziness.

Several thoughts and tips from the whole experience:

1. The bikram 30 day challenge is crazy. Doing yoga that frequently is probably not good for you. My body is seriously blown out and while everyday aches and pains from sitting at a desk for 8 hrs/day have gone away, new pains are in their place.

2. The challenge is doable. Decide on a schedule and stick to it. This way you aren’t wasting time thinking “Oh, when am I going to yoga today?” you just know, and you go.

3. It’s probably not a good idea to go on vacation during your challenge, but I did!

4. Even if you don’t go out of town, you will have to do some doubles. Don’t worry, it’s not that bad.

5. If you are a woman take your clothes off ASAP post-yoga. Don’t walk around in them and get bubble tea or whatever the hell on your walk back home. You will get a yeast infection!!!

6. After class soak your clothes in cold soapy water. This will help keep the stink at bay.

7. Be prepared to do mountains of laundry.

8. Drink water, coconut juice, lemon water, kombucha, anything, everything, all day long. If you must drink alcohol go light.

9. It can get pricey renting a mat, towel and water every time, so try your best to bring your own materials. However, renting a towel can be worth it just so you don’t have to deal with the mess.

10. You may not lose weight. I don’t think I lost a pound, which really frustrated me (Two hours + of exercise a day for 30 days, what the hell???). I did, however, lose half an inch+ on my stomach. My abs and quads are super strong and defined, and at the gym today running was … EASY. I didn’t break a sweat or breathe hard at all. So… definite improvement, but not a tip of the scales.