life Parenting

Hi, End of August

August 30, 2023

The End of the Month, 10x


I have nothing objective to complain about except a) migraines and b) the weather.

Literally nothing! There was nothing wrong with this month. There were epic highs, in fact! Glaciers! School started, overall successfully! Etc.

But yeah, it’s been a month.

September 1 does feel like another shot at a fresh start, since Quintile 4’s opening was sort of a bust.

General Life Things I will work on in September:

Getting more sleep. This is absolutely related to marathon training. I am often aiming to run 8-9 miles before 7 am which means starting early. I really am into it (obviously), so I don’t want to give this up! But if I get 7 hours or less for a few nights in a row everything just feels impossible and all humans become instantly irritating — not good at work OR at home. I need to prioritize going to bed early on some nights and hopefully shifting at least one weekday run a little later (Thursdays, probably).

Tracking my migraines. I need to figure out what to do if they are happening 2x/week or more. Will track more carefully this month (I had kind of stopped)

Actively work on being more patient with the kids. This does not mean not setting boundaries, but I know I’ve been extra reactive lately and it doesn’t help.

Generally work on slowing down. I have had anxious flitting around type energy these past couple of weeks and it feels bad. Things that help with slowing down: Reading. Journaling. Just reminding myself not to rush!

Thinking of my West/Gulf Coast (of FL) friends. This graphic will be out of date by the time this post goes up ~10 hours from now so I will hope it all fizzles out.

Activities . . .

A returned to dance after a 5 year hiatus (and enjoyed it!) and G had a rocky start (someone told her to go to the wrong room and she couldn’t recover . . . ) but hopefully her next class will be smoother. We survived the soccer tournament and C scored his first goal of the season.

I kind of feel like I will be in heavy kid activity season for perhaps the next decade but honestly I’m here for it. I was thinking back to my own childhood which was pretty heavy with activities too, and those things (concerts! plays! music festivals + trips! cheerleading competitions!) weigh heavily in my memory and shaped me in many ways. I have no idea who taught me high school science (actually my physics teacher just came to me but mostly negative memories and not because I was bad at physics, because I wasn’t) but I remember my music teachers, cheer coach, etc. I hope my kids find these experiences valuable and memorable too.

it was a rough day but I love this pic!

Big Sur

Okay so. The VIP registration for 2024 is tomorrow. BUT I don’t think Josh is as excited about doing it as I am. And maybe I am becoming less excited about it, because if I am going to train for another marathon this spring (and I might), I probably want one that is fast.

Big Sur is not that.

So I think I may table the Big Sur idea for a while (maybe I can run Boston to Big Sur someday instead!). Ideas for a fast marathon in May/June that is usually COOL? Eugene? Bayshore? Grandma’s? Bayshore actually might be a top contender since I already requested off that weekend for our anniversary . . . hmmmm.


  • Reply Coco August 30, 2023 at 5:40 am

    Sleep is my number 1 priority these days, even sacrificing reading time, kids time. If I need to sleep, sometimes even before 8pm, I’d just say goodbye for the family, put on my earplugs and go to sleep with zero guilt. If I don’t sleep well, the next time I’ll be miserable for sure.
    So glad to hear you had good memories with the activities. Sometimes I wonder if my girls will resent/regret doing so much.

  • Reply Coree August 30, 2023 at 5:51 am

    You and me both… it’s been a month! But September is a total fresh start, I start a new job on the 1st. I’ve got big back to school energy – I’ve made a meal matrix a la The Lazy Genius, gave myself theme days for work, have been decluttering, etc.

    I need to figure out sleep, I feel like I’m getting 7.5 hours but I’m waking up tired every AM, and I’ll have some early starts with the new job. Think I might have to send myself to bed at 9 for a little while.

  • Reply Jenna August 30, 2023 at 6:47 am

    Buffalo is Memorial Day weekend. Very fast course, and usually not too hot. It’s smaller so easier logistics in terms of not having to wake up hours and hours before the start time. Plenty of hotels and two Great Lakes and a [quite large] waterfall nearby for exploring before or after. Decent size running community here means lots of course support and cheering.

    I’m thinking of running it to try and BQ. Giving myself space not to decide until I actually need to decide.

  • Reply acdalal August 30, 2023 at 7:35 am

    I love Grandma’s! Beautiful course and the whole city feels like a party that weekend. And Duluth is a great little city to visit. The weather can be hit or miss — the year I did it (2017) it was sunny and hot, although I guess hot is relative, haha! It can also be cold and windy. It all depends on the mood of Lake Superior that day. I would love to do that race again, although sadly I think my marathon days (and possibly my running days, sob) are over.

    • Reply KGC August 30, 2023 at 11:53 am

      Just weighing in here to say solidarity in the marathon and maybe all running days being over. In the same boat and it sucks. Hope you’re either able to get back to it or find peace in another activity!

      • Reply acdalal August 30, 2023 at 9:48 pm

        Do you listen to Another Mother Runner podcast? Apparently they are going to do a 4 part series on this topic (on their Tuesday show I think). I hope you are also able to find peace wherever your athletic journey leads!

        • Reply KGC August 30, 2023 at 10:09 pm

          I don’t but I’ll have to check it out. I’m very close to spending a good chunk of change on one more thing to try. But listening to a podcast is free so that seems like another reasonable thing to do 🙂

          • Sarah Hart-Unger August 31, 2023 at 5:22 am

            Love AMR and I honestly would not be surprised if I end up having to retire too someday. (I would probably lean hard into strength training , yoga, and maybe some biking?). But I don’t want to minimize how hard it would be. Sending at peace vibes to both of you.

  • Reply Cassie August 30, 2023 at 7:42 am

    If you are on the fence—-
    You will not regret Big Sur! Your future self (April 2024) will thank you for registering tomorrow.

  • Reply Chelsea August 30, 2023 at 7:47 am

    Oooooh – I love the idea of you doing Jacksonville a little conservatively and then going for your BQ in the spring! I’d kind of forgotten you’d planned to do Big Sur (which does sound amazing) Bayshore is supposed to be very fast. It’s probably too quick a turn around, but the Shamrock Marathon in mid-March is also a great, fast race.

  • Reply Chelsea August 30, 2023 at 7:59 am

    Another thought that might split the difference between Big Sur and a flat race is REVEL Mt. Charleston, which is in April: It’s a big BQ race:

  • Reply Jessica August 30, 2023 at 9:20 am

    I am not a runner at all but I vote Grandma’s because I live in Minnesota and absolutely love the North Shore of Lake Superior and want to share it with everyone! Plus it’s like a huge deal in Duluth and so many people come out to support.

  • Reply Louise August 30, 2023 at 9:26 am

    You might enjoy this article in a UK newspaper about how US runners cope with running in the heat (clearly of fascination to a country when a temp over 30’C counts as a heatwave and humidity is never an issue!).

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns August 30, 2023 at 9:27 am

    Grandma’s will be cool for you, but not reliably cool. So I wouldn’t necessarily count on that one having ideal weather. The weather here in MN can be surprisingly warm/humid. Again – not compared to FL but it’s not exactly a “cool” climate in June necessarily. So if you want a high chance of ideal temps/etc, I would probably steer away from Grandma’s.

    August has felt like the longest month. My trip to Banff feels like a lifetime ago. I have known we’d have a 2 week gap in care between the summer program ending and school starting but I kind of underestimated all the mental energy it would take to think through that gap? And then my oldest was saying he didn’t want to be at my parents alone last week so I was worrying it was going to be a really awful goodbye. But he’s happy as a clam up there and barely cared when I left on Sunday – like he waved from the couch; couldn’t be bothered to get up and hug me. Ha.

    • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns August 30, 2023 at 1:12 pm

      I should note that, selfishly, I’d love it if you visited Mn for a marathon so I could meet you!!

  • Reply Sarah August 30, 2023 at 10:23 am

    Grandma’s. I did the half this year and it was wonderful and beautiful.

  • Reply Stacy August 30, 2023 at 12:21 pm

    Just wanted to say I survived physics because of you! I believe we were partners for the egg drop project…so many random projects!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger August 30, 2023 at 12:38 pm

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH you get equal credit on the egg drop!!! In retrospect that teacher definitely played favorites in annoying ways! I honestly found college physics (was a med school pre-req) a better experience!

  • Reply Omdg August 30, 2023 at 12:48 pm

    No advice about marathons but if you want to do a 1/2 in early June, the Dexter – Ann Arbor half is a fun race and this year was unseasonably hot at 72 degrees. No promises 2/2 global warming though! Plus if your kids are out of school maybe you could parlay it into a trip up north to Mackinac island or something?

  • Reply Abigail August 31, 2023 at 2:05 am

    I have anxious flitting round energy this week. I had no name for that until now – thank you. Having a title for something helps me tackle it. I was being much more down on myself and calling it an inability to focus although it’s not that. Time to slow down. Thank you for sharing your mood – it’s helpful to know I am not alone. Hope September is less anxious and flitting for you.

  • Reply Maria C, NJ August 31, 2023 at 5:59 am

    Grandma’s is great! The point to point aspect helps me mentally. It is a small town so the marathon is an event! There are parties being held along the way and it is just really fun! I have done it twice!

    I think I may buy my first Hobinichi tonight! I am a former Franklin fanatic who gave up planners for a while, but have loved bullet journaling for 4 years now. I love my bullet journal. It is just a lot of work to stay ahead of making weekly spreads… but then again, I can change them each week if I want to try something new.

  • Reply Jenny August 31, 2023 at 8:31 am

    Wow, you DO have to get up early! I’ve also been struggling with sleep lately, but I only have one kid at home now, and I don’t run 8-9 miles before 7 am! So if you can do it, so can I.
    Glad you had a good start to the school year! It’s always a relief when everyone is settled into their new routine.
    I think all the marathons you’re thinking of sound amazing. And your upcoming one is Jacksonville? I can’t wait to see how it goes for you and see what you choose for the spring. Sounds like you’ve been crushing your training.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger August 31, 2023 at 9:37 am

      yes Jacksonville. And yes early – it’s a 5:30 run or no run, basically. So I pick 5:30 . . .

  • Reply Jenny September 1, 2023 at 11:54 am

    Late to comment on this but I like Pittsburgh! I live here so I’m biased but I’ve done the half many times and the full twice. It’s a very fun race and Pittsburgh is a cool city. Its usually the first weekend of May so the weather can vary. Not flat though.

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