I’m not afraid to grow up. Well, most of the time.
Growth is hardly absolute. And despite knowing that one single day does not abruptly render me older and wiser (certainly not taller) I still cannot resist feeling a bit of aged excitement as I optimistically move on from the best year of my and embark on 22.
As of late, the ongoing conversation about getting older, graduating and becoming who we are meant to be is on the forefront. But with even more prevalence thrives the resistance of this conversation.
And yes, I too am admittedly terrified of getting older. But it’s an inexplicably thrilling fear–one that cleans the slate to paint bigger and better adventures on.
And let’s face it, when the biggest football game of the year + a killer cycling workout + enough brunch and treats to last a lifetime all fall on your birthday weekend, the only thing to be afraid of is choosing the wrong cupcake flavor (spoiler: there is no such thing)
HOW I SWEAT:
Year 21 was filled with countless runs. Miles both many and few, with ease and with struggle, with simultaneous bliss and exhaustion. But regardless the number, each mile brought moments of pure and honest serenity that I would not trade for the world.
But despite that, this week, I decided to start 22 on a slightly different note by setting my running shoes aside for a killer cycling workout I will surely repeat again and again.
0:00-5:00 Warm up, easy level of speed + resistance
5:00-9:00 Moderate resistance + speed, seated climb
Increase resistance 1/2 turn each min
9:00-13:00 Speed + resistance pattern as above, seated
13:00-21:00 REPEAT PREVIOUS 8 MINUTES
21:00-25:00 Tabata sprint: moderate resistance
00:20 max speed, 00:10 recovery
25:00-30:00 Cool down, easy level of speed + resistance
Originally I was distraught one of the official group cycling classes was full at the time I wanted to hop on a bike, but this workout proved I needed no instructor to complete a KILLER workout I’m still feeling at week’s end.
30 minutes. Over 10 miles. And nearly 500 calories.
Sounds good to me. And it’ll sound good to you to when you see everything I’ve eaten in the last week.
WHAT I ATE + HOW I CELEBRATE
With my birthday falling on a Sunday during the most important football weekend at Ohio State, the celebration activities agenda assuredly wrote itself: tailgates + brunch + Jeni’s ice cream.
The weekend began with the most traditional and intense rivalry in college football history–and after a frigid jump into Mirror Lake with 14 thousand of my closest Buckeye allies and game day festivities that began with the rising sun, I closed out my 21st year in style–along side my best friends watching another Ohio State victory in the greatest stadium on earth.
And after nearly 18 hours of celebrating the Buckeyes, midnight closed the curtain on my 21st year and welcomed Sunday morning–naturally requiring only one form of celebration.
Brunch. And a lot of it. Not to mention, the greatest birthday bloody mary under the November sun.
We made our way to Ethyl and Tank and ordered nearly the menu in it’s entirely. I’m going to hold my words and allow this late morning smorgasbord to speak for itself.
savory pulled pork + cheddar tank pancakes:
(that’s right, pork + cheese + syrup–forget about it)
breakfast burrito + tacos:
nutella + banana pancakes:
sweet potato scramble:
JK. I got ice cream too.
And no ordinary ice cream. Ice cream of God’s among men–the greatest ice creamery on the face of the earth–Jeni’s Spendid Ice Cream. Dare argue me. I’m an expert here–trust me.
And what a splendid birthday it was.
And after a final unexpected delivered treat, my wonderful birthday weekend drew to a bitter sweet close. Mostly sweet, on account of the cupcake. Hence, the cleanse week I desperately endured.
We grow sometimes in one direction, while not in another. We grow unpredictably and entirely subjectively. We are wise in one sense, and innocent in another.
Our past experiences, our future aspiration both pull us backwards and propel us forward, but culminate, if only for a fleeting moment, to anchor us in the present.
And that is why I am not afraid to grow up.
And as long as birthdays always come with brunch and ice cream, I’ll gladly welcome each coming age with the hope for even greater adventures (and meals) ahead.
“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”
Happy Friday, kids.
Run far, eat well, drink better.