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October 30, 2006

I heart MN

Today's maybe the most wonderful day in a while. I love it in Minnesota (we'll check back with that thought after a few months of wind & cold). The weather is not just a conversation starter- it's sometimes the sole topic of conversation. And it's sincere conversation, too. I was thinking today, in Minnesota, I perceive weather to be the #1 barrier to physical activity (for others, of course. Dude, i'm out there in 8" of snow). I can't blame all those fair-weather folk. Overall, there are so many opportunities to engage in phycial activity. And, for the most part, motorists share the road with bikers and know how to drive when a biker is in the road. I once heard that 90% of the time, those who run regularly, run the same course every day. I am totally one of those people. I think there is more to look into that percentage than at the surface, though. For example, bike/run routes that I do often- I know where there are potholes, or cracks in the pavement, or when to brake, when to shift gears. Additionally, the routes I do are generally well-lit, and frequently trafficked by vehicles and non-vehicles (ie, people & their pooches).

What? Did someone ask what I was doing this week that is noteworthy? Well, then.... TONIGHT i'm volunteering at the Phillips Neighborhood Clinic- it's my first time doing real nutritional counseling! Then, TOMORROW, there's a halloween part-ay in the SPH lounge & then I think we're going out after that. It's halloween, ya know. I still haven't decided if I'm going to dress up. Last year I was a Catholic school girl- it's soo true, i was for 9 years. WEDSDAY, night class, then maybe out w/ some people from class after that. THURSDAY, i think i have a date! & before that I am meeting my mentee to go to the downtown library. FRIDAY, maybe another date! (Thank you, speed dating). SATURDAY, i'm on a team of 4 friends- we're being shuttled around town in a party bus to different bars who have Summit beer on tap. We are asked Summit beer trivia at each bar, and each given a beer at each bar (9 each in total). The team with the most points gets 15 cases of Summit beer, and a party for 20-30 of our closests friends. As pointed out by one of my teammates, "we will be the most popular people on campus if we win!" No doubt. This is a good time in your life to be my friend. I think we're having a study cram session this week. I learned in undergad psych that whatever condition you study in, you should take the test/exam in & vice versa. So, i guess if we will be drinking Summit during the competition, we should follow suit during our study session.

October 21, 2006

Yay for the weekend!

This weekend has already been kind of crazy- it all started with happy hour yesterday @ sally's....
Two of my single girl friends & I decided it would be fun to go to grad school speed dating on campus last night. If nothing else, maybe we would meet some fun new people to hang out with & not to mention it would be some good memories and a topic of conversation. BUT if a cute grad boy wants to go on a date with me, who am I to deny him that? So, turns out, I don't really like speed dating- it's one of those things that I'm glad I did so I never have to do it again. There were lots of "What's your major?" and "So, what do you do besides school?" Both necessary and valid conversation starters, but it just gets old fast.

It was totally happening on campus last night, though. There was also a GAPSA open house thing going on at the Campus Club upstairs from the speed dating in the Union. Free food, prizes being raffled, plus it's a pretty nice place to hang out, even though I don't - it's a little pricey. Then, after speed dating we went back to Sally's & hung out there for a while then headed to dinkytown, which i generally don't go to b/c there usually is an overabundance of drunk undergrads, but it's the closest place to go by campus. So we went to a few places in dinkytown to meet some friends. And, I think I actually had a lot of fun last night- I don't even go to Sally's often, and the waitress doesn't need to card me. Double score is that somehow I've worked it into my life to get free beer at the Local, downtown. Gotta love the bartenders, but not date them. First rule of life is 'Don't date your bartender'. It's like 'Don't date your best friend' or 'Don't date your coworker'. Ladies, I think there are enough boys in the world that we can actually start a conversation with a guy that doesn't include a drink order.

That brings us to this morning. My favorite volunteer event of the year! We raked leaves at a few people's homes in S Minneapolis who are unable to rake their own lawns. Another thing I greatly enjoy is shoveling snow- great workout!! After that we went to brunch at Birchwood Cafe, yummy! local, organic, wonderful food. I think my favorite thing to get there is any of their mixed cold salads paired with some crunchy nachos. In a week or two they are having a 5 course beer meal, that pairs a different beer with a different course. It's only $45, which is not much considering you get drinks & food. Oohh, maybe a speed dating boy will go with me :) haha

October 12, 2006

All of a sudden it's winter already

So, it totally snowed today. 4 days ago it was 80 degrees, and I was beerfestivaling downtown:( I'm not sure how I feel about this snow...All I know is that it's a lot more difficult to get around when you're wearing a JLO puffy coat & have a backpack and a workout bag full of winter running clothes. Things to watch out for while dressed for the weather, are small children that you may knock over & not even realize it. Also, you need to be more mindful of drinking glasses & people's personal space. In general, a JLO puffy coat will increase your waist circumference about 6 inches and disrupt your peripheral vision b/c of the faux fur hoodie. Good things about winter as I see it, are decreased skin to clothes ratio on undergrad girls (turns out short-short skirts are back), less crime (especially when I'm running at night), and it's another reason to drink lattes & eat scones :)

In other news, I started using my ipod (thanks UofM!!), and it's great for working out. I've been meaning to buy one for about 2 years now, but never wanted to buckle down and get one. I don't mind one as a gift, though....anyways, I don't see how everyone wears them around ALL the time. Turns out, when I am close enough to hear what is playing on people's ipods, the music is actually really bad. So, it's not like they just can't get enough of the awesome music that's out there, b/c it turns out they're not listening to it.

I'm not sure what I'm doing for the rest of the week. Today was a great day though, like most!!! I really want to buy aero bars for my bike so I can bike in this crazy wind (I was almost blown off the Lake St. bridge today at noon while I was running!!). There are both good and bad aspects about only taking 2 classes in a semester. I think I'm going to start taking advantage of some productive, career-directed activities other than what I already do. I met w/ a Peace Corps rep today, but she wasn't too helpful in regards to combining my Peace Corps experience with a Masters project. I think we have 5 years to finish one...not sure if that time clock starts when course work ends or starts. Maybe a good thing to look into.

Still don't know how to upload a picture to my text, or you would be looking at a wonderful beer glass I was gifted at the beerfest (Go Surly!!)

October 5, 2006

watching marathons don't make me want to run them, though

This week so far I've just been spending biking & running, and not doing much school work or job work. I'm only taking two classes (Int'l project planning and management and Maternal/Infant Nutrition) and TA-ing another class, so really I don't have much to do school-wise. I find ways to keep busy most of the time, though. For example, I've been catching up on sleep this week... always an essential. And, I've been getting back into triathlon training (minus the swimming). I figure while it's beautiful outside still, I should take advantage of it. I've also been keeping up with volunteering as usual, and with the all important Grey's Anatomy.
It's not like I don't do anything though. I have a lot of works in progress. Stuff I've been thinking about doing. Like, I've been thinking about joining Peace Corps for a while, so I am going to meet with a rep. at a career fair coming up. Also, I've semi-committed to bike across country (CA to DC) next spring with a med school group to promote relevant global health issues, and need to figure out how that can fit into school work at the U.....
In the meantime, my first visitor is coming this weekend - I've only been here for a year!! - People have come that just have been passing through, but she is coming to specifically visit meeeee!!! Just so happens that my favorite event of the year is happening this weekend: The Fall Brew Review. It's downtown Minneapolis & features all local brews - MN, WI and the like. I think some other public healthy people are going also. Should be good times!!
I totally forget how to upload pictures, so we will figure that out for next week :)