From no f***ing way to 21K

Since my mid-December transition out of a taxing position on night shift there have been some major happenings with the not-so-drunken scientist. Ditching the two bottle Tuesdays and after work drinks for two-mile-mornings and kale smoothies after yoga I have accomplished the impossible (or so I thought)….a real life, for serious, no joke, half marathon. This all began with a New Years resolution to take better care of myself and focus on my goals for my personal life. As I am the daughter of two amazingly motivating people, I knew I needed a serious challenge. I wanted it to be something I couldn’t even fathom achieving. I found it the day a coworker asked me to join her in a half-marathon along Lake Winnipesaukee. The 13.1 mile course was an ordeal in itself and after registering I found out that the run followed up Mt. Major and along the water with rolling hills….I began second guessing my decision instantly.

My entire life I struggled with running, from the mile requirement in gym class, to watching others partake in 5Ks. I always envied those that made running seem so effortless and meditative. I found it slow, boring, and extremely painful (so naturally I decided to take it on). I wanted to find out just how far I could take my body.

The day of the race I woke up with a lingering sinus cold and an ache in my knee from a bad fall running the previous Sunday night (uneven sidewalks can be a tricky beast in the dark). My shin splints were finally on the mend and my mind was racing with doubt. The farthest I had run during my training was 4.5 miles…that is 1/3 of what I had to accomplish this exact morning. I was terrified. Suddenly we were at the starting point and I was scrambling to remake my playlist that I accidentally deleted at 7:57am. It was 8:00am and suddenly, we were off. A sea of runners bouncing down the course toward the finish line and cold beer. Conversations and jokes swirled around as we set our pace and focused on the road ahead. It was as if I had blinked and we appeared at mile 8, I smiled and shouted out that this was the most I had ever run, the thrill and adrenaline fueling me. THEN mile 9….heartbreak hill. The first 8 miles were a breeze before this moment. Everything I had I poured into my legs, sweat soaking every inch of my body. By mile 11.5 I felt as though I couldn’t make it one more step… I thought of all those that couldn’t run, those that had motivated me and pushed me to work harder, my father who rode his bike even through chemo…and I just kept running. Crossing the finish line was unreal, the heavy metal around my neck seemed like an illusion. Somewhere in a state of numb and extreme pain I felt this amazing high. I had done the impossible, I had run half of a marathon! I suddenly understood what it meant to be a runner. To devote the time and mental energy to train. To not just look at the finish line 13 miles away, but the road 13 feet ahead. Not only did I accomplish a physical goal (running for over 2 hours), but a mental one as well. I gained a greater appreciation for my body and a reconfirmation of my strength.

And in a few more months I’ll be doing it again…except faster. Cheers!

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Gut wrenching joint pain, literally.

My research surrounding a current presentation paper dealing with Hodgkin Lymphoma and AI lead me to an interesting article on bacterial effects on autoimmune disorders.

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Wine and Truffle Friday

I was able to attend a wine and truffle (“the Italian fungus”, yum!) tasting at Max’s in Hartford this past weekend. The food was amazing, but even more amazing was a 1983 sherry that wowed us during dessert. Highly recommend it to any sherry lover and non-lover alike! Another, rather random, happening of the night was that the other two couples at our table (the wives) were both in medical lab sciences…go figure!

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NDT&RD

My pregame to the Super Bowl, while I finish up some graduate work and make guacamole. Love these two!

Also GO PATS!

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Anthrax to oncology

Manipulating nature to fight hiccups of mutation. Utilizing anthrax to Trojan horse chemotherapies.

Senior Scientist

I happen to catch an episode of Ellen, and saw Sara speaking about her research. It amazes me to see such motivated young women, accomplishing such great work…before graduating high school. I can’t stress enough how important her work is, not just the research but her organization to bring young women into the science field.

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Drunken experiments in the kitchen

One of my favorite things to do is head to the grocery store, pick out something fresh, and build a meal around it. I experimented with a couple of dished this past week that are now included as a staple in the apartment. I decided to try my hand at ceviche, turning the avocado into the actual bowl for presentation, and chicken curry salad. Needless to say everything turned out better than expected, possibly due to the sparkling wine I was “tasting” while mixing ingredients. I also tried a new and easy dessert, biscuits and blueberry sauce cooked in a skillet. Due to the copious amounts of food consumed we hiked the guilt away on a 7 mile trail not too far from the city. Cheers!

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SOWA Sunday

Long overdue trip to my favorite open market. Although it’s new found popularity has caused a larger crowd, with it has also come new vendors and local cider/wine tastings. I got my usual favorite, Thai basil limeade from Bon Mei, then hopped over to a new food truck all about bacon (need I say more?) I sampled the candied bacon and it was as I suspected, amazing. Down East cider was handing out samples so I was finally able to try their lemon and honey ciders, perfect for a hot day like today! I ventured over to Westport Wines and tasted their version of a prosecco called Farmers Fizz. Very light and refreshing so I bought two and they included free wine glasses, bonus! Drinking on a budget is much easier on SOWA Sundays!

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You know you are a nightshifter when…

Your happy hour is when the rest of the city is enjoying their fist cups of coffee at 8 am. I’m happy to have picked up a new Bantam cider to try, La Grande. Aged in bourbon barrels this cider is dry and bold, with a lingering taste of smokiness from the whiskey. I am a huge fan of dry ciders (and whiskey) and tend to shy away from those served at most bars in Boston (sorry angry orchard…I’m just not into you) so it is very exciting to find craft ciders with interesting flavors. I would highly recommend it for anyone looking to try something unique and hand crafted!

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STAP investigation

This is devostating. The pressure and stresses of research on a PI is heavy enough. I cannot imagine the weight of this investigation. It heavies my heart to hear this news.

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