about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

    Search

    What’s Cooking?

    Personal Bests

    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.



The Lonely Runner.

After two very late nights (for me!), I let out a nice big groan when my alarm went off at 7am for Sunday’s run.  I stumbled around and got ready in my running gear, determined to get out early and beat the Georgia heat.  (Someone looks…tired.)

IMG_9214 (462x640)

I headed downstairs to make my standard pre-run meal – PB&J!  Love that Casey’s family is a group of diehard Trader Joe’s users just like me. 

IMG_9219 (640x480)

I’m not used to regular nut butters – this was SO filling! 

IMG_9221 (640x480)

Gooey and delicious.  Just what I needed.

IMG_9223 (640x480)

And a big ole cup of coffee in a Starbucks Atlanta mug, just like the Indianapolis mug I have at home!

IMG_9220 (479x640)

Casey’s uncle Kevin was nice enough to plan out a run for me – he even drew me a map to make sure I didn’t get lost!  I headed about ten minutes away from their house in Roswell to a parking area right by the Chattahoochee River.  The plan was that I would run from the parking area to a park called Cochran Shoals, an area with lots of great running trails.  I pointed myself in what I hoped was the right direction, and took off down the road…

IMG_9239 (640x470)

I ran for two miles before I started to wonder if I was going the wrong way.  But I kept getting passed by packs of bikers, so I figured they must be heading somewhere and I kept going.  I had so much going through my head that morning.  It was a VERY fun, but also somewhat introspective weekend for me.

There is an isolating difference between having "just one drink” and not having any at all.  The difference between one and zero is really what it’s all about.  Since quitting I’ve often been asked, “why don’t you just drink one?” and the truth is, I absolutely could.  I don’t have a drinking problem.  But for me, it’s about commitment.  I decided to stop drinking, and to stop drinking, means to stop completely.  I don’t eat “just one” piece of bacon, so I don’t have just one glass of wine either.  It isn’t a hard decision.  In fact, there’s not even temptation.  It simply comes down to discipline.

But I’ve already talked about quitting drinking, so I don’t really need to revisit all that.  To get back to it, I found myself running along the path to the river Sunday morning, feeling both emotionally and physically…a little lost.  Going out late and partying with friends was a big part of my college and post-college years, and being back in the party scene this weekend reminded me that, while there are certainly things that I don’t miss, there is a world out there that has continued on without me, and despite my best efforts, I’m not part of it anymore.  Even so, I still had a great time hanging out with the girls, and I’m so glad they included me in all their bachelorette fun.

As I ran towards the river Sunday morning, I couldn’t quiet the thoughts racing through my mind about all that has changed in just a few short years.  As we make our way moving around the country, it is hard to make new friends without the ease of wine tastings and happy hours, and I’m not always sure quite where I fit in anymore.

Just as I started to wonder if I had made a wrong turn somewhere, the path opened to reveal a giant parking lot literally PACKED with cars of runners and bikers – so many that there was a line waiting to park stretching down the road.  I found the trail head and got a much needed break at the water fountain.  I could not believe how many people were out running, biking, and dog walking so early on a Sunday morning. 

Visitors walking along the Cochran Shoals Fitness Trail.

Suddenly all my feelings of loneliness and self-doubt were gone.  There may be parts of my old lifestyle that I can’t be part of anymore, but my new healthier way of life is such a better fit for me.  Surrounded by total strangers, I felt supported and encouraged by the smiles and waves of all the other passing runners. 

I wished so badly that I’d had my camera with me on this run.  The trail went right along this beautiful river with several big clearings looking directly out over the water.  Luckily I was able to steal a few images from someone else!

There were HUNDREDS of people out on this trail, and having so many other active people around me, combined with multiple ice cold water fountains, made for my best training run to date.  I wasn’t necessarily fast, but my mind and heart were in the right place, and that was all that mattered to me.

After ten miles on the trail, I decided to make the hot and water-less 2.5 mile trek back to my car, since the southern sun was starting to beat down mercilessly.  I made it back feeling HOT, tired, and proud of myself.

IMG_9224 (640x480)

I was so thankful for the Gatorade I had stolen out of Toby and Kevin’s garage that morning – CHUG!

IMG_9238 (477x640)

Just a few years ago, I would have been stumbling out of bed right around then, searching for Advil and moaning with a hangover.  I probably would have spent the entirety of that beautiful day laying in the dark on my couch.  Instead, in the wee hours of a gorgeous Georgia morning, I ran 12 hot and sticky miles and felt amazing. 

IMG_9244 (480x640)

Perhaps I know where I fit in after all.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

157 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Nicole @ yuppie yogini     at 4:56 pm

What an awesome place to run…great job on 12 miles!

[Reply]

beth     at 4:58 pm

I grew up in this area and used to ride my bike and walk my dog down at Columns Drive all the time, so I love seeing these pictures! I miss that place.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Ahhh fun! Columns was GORGEOUS!

[Reply]

R @ learningasichop.wordpress.com     at 4:59 pm

“Being back in the party scene this weekend reminded me that, while there are certainly things that I don’t miss, there is a world out there that has continued on without me, and despite my best efforts, I’m not part of it anymore.”

Totally get what you mean here but I am glad you were able to find comfort in your run. Too bad you two don’t live in NYC… We’re not big drinkers either

[Reply]

Lauren     at 5:00 pm

Ah what a great post! I love the correlation between having 1 drink and having 1 piece of meat.

I still drink, but I don’t get drunk anymore. I love waking up on the weekends feeling totally fine. It’s a complete 180 from my previous life and feels so good.

[Reply]

Jo     at 5:00 pm

That was an amazing post! Well done for your discipline :-) I don’t really drink either and sometimes feel a bit awkward and left out, but so TOTALLY worth it to feel human the next day. Well done for running in that heat too! Have a great day!

[Reply]

Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen)     at 5:05 pm

What a great run! I always give Georgia a hard time, but I do love her. Glad you enjoyed your run! I hope you have a great afternoon!

[Reply]

Annie (Delicious Wellness)     at 5:05 pm

Emily, My heart went out to you throughout that whole post! I was definitely crying by the end! You are such a brave, inspiring person, and don’t you forget it! So many people wouldn’t even admit it if they didn’t like to drink out of fear of being ridiculed or feeling lonely. You’ve made such a commitment to yourself and your Truth and that is SO POWERFUL! I love reading about how running can turn everything around again inside of us. You DO fit in! And you’re one of the bravest, most full of integrity (integrityous? heh), people I know (and I don’t even know you!). I’m proud of your for your commitment to yourself! :) You’re an inspiration to all of us.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you so much!

[Reply]

Jo     at 5:07 pm

I still drink alcohol from time to time but pretty much gave it up around a year ago. I have never been one to suffer from hang-overs but drinking had started to negatively affect my emotions and moods. The day after even 1 drink leaves me feeling blue and lethargic and thats not worth it to me.

The problem for me is that friends wonder why I don’t drink and I don’t like to talk about things like mood on a night out! I’m also single so dates often revolve around bars and men seem to find issue with the fact that I don’t want to drink. Having more than a couple of drinks of a night makes me insanely paranoid!

I wish I had more friends around me who could understand, or just not question, my choice of abstinence from alcohol. Until then I’ll just stick to my convictions and pretend that their judgements don’t affect me!

Oh, and that run route looks amazing! :)

[Reply]

Kelly     at 5:10 pm

Love this post! :)

[Reply]

Jayna     at 5:14 pm

As I was reading I was thinking that you may not quite fit in with the same crowd, but look at all the new wonderful friends you’ve made with the same outlook and ideals as you have. Looks like you reached the same conclusion :)

So glad to hear that you resolved your feelings of loneliness!

[Reply]

Daniel     at 5:19 pm

The bacon analogy is excellent and I use it in my life as well! (Seriously, who can stop at once piece of bacon?!)
Sometimes abstinence is just the best form of prevention (with food and other things, haha ;) )

The idea of driving to find a running location actually sounds like a great thing… I’ve never really thought about that. We don’t have a ton of running trails or anything like that, and I dislike bugs and wooded areas that are common around here, but just taking a little drive to find a new running location sounds like something I want to give a try to. :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I drive to all the trails here in Charlotte too!

[Reply]

Angela     at 5:19 pm

Wow I feel like when I was reading it was about me! I don’t drink, I have never even had a drink in my life. Alcoholism is deeply rooted in my family’s genes. I have lost a Grandfather, an uncle, and my own father (he is still living but I have not spoken to him in years) to alcoholism. Growing up and seeing the people that I loved suffer from this was enough for me to never want to touch a drink (having an amazing Mother also helped!).

I constantly feel judged by other people, and even my friends who drink for not drinking. I get asked all the time, “aren’t you going to have a drink?” “not even one drink?” and the list goes on. It’s sad because I really love my friends but they really don’t understand that I don’t drink for a reason. You are right on when you saying that it’s isolating and lonely because it really is, sometimes I feel like I’m the only one in the world who doesn’t drink!

I don’t think that if I did ever did have a drink that it would turn in to a problem but it’s just that chance that it could keeps me far away from it.

Luckily I have an amazing husband with a similar family situation and he has actually never had a drink in his life so we are really great support to one another.

Thanks for the post Emily and being so honest and letting me rant!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

It’s nice to know that there are other people with similar stories. Thank YOU! :) You are always welcome to rant anytime.

[Reply]

Laura     at 5:22 pm

I love this! I’m only nineteen but because I don’t drink illegally I’m looked at differently by everyone. I’m glad to know there’s others out there!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

You are definitely NOT alone. Don’t let the peer pressure of being 19 get to you. :)

[Reply]

Nicole     at 5:23 pm

That is where I ran on Sunday, around the same time !!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Gaaah! Really!?! That is so crazy. Wish I had known – would have loved a partner!

[Reply]

Chrissy (The New Me)     at 5:25 pm

Saturday night, my friends threw me a semi-surprise birthday party and encouraged me to drink as much as I wanted. I had two drinks, then switched to water, and woke up Sunday feeling healthy, refreshed and ready to face my 28th year. In other words, you’re not alone! Congrats on a beautiful 12 miles.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Good for you! And happy birthday :)

[Reply]

Stacey @ Tipping the (Kitchen!) Scales     at 5:25 pm

You don’t look tired – just cute!!

I admire your commitment to stop drinking completely. I know it can be tough because drinking is so expected in our culture.

[Reply]

Therese     at 5:26 pm

I’m so glad you’re you!

:)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Awww thanks :)

[Reply]

Marisa!     at 5:26 pm

I LOVED this post. :) It made me smile. I also love waking up on the weekends and going on a long walk or hike before all of my friends get up.

[Reply]

Cara     at 5:28 pm

I am also glad you resolved your feelings of loneliness. I feel like you have a much better group of friends now (as shown on the blog) that don’t need drinking to have fun. Running dates, and restaurant dates sound like a lot of fun to me. Just maybe not the same fun to the past friends. But I am sure you already know this!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I am lucky to have WONDERFUL friends who are supportive and awesome :) I love running dates!

[Reply]

shorty     at 5:28 pm

I TOTALLY hear you on feeling lonely at times. When we choose to do something that is not the norm it can be a lonely place. I am so thankful you were able to see those strangers and realize that you might be alone but you are not alone:) We do not drink and we have lost all of our friends…it was a slow process. We have not be drinkers for about 7 or 8 years. At first we still had most of our friends but over time we just didn’t have much in common with them. It was really hard because we were both involved with our frat houses and had many friends. However when they got together it was always a drink fest and it just didn’t have the same appeal to us. We still love those people and miss them bunches but we just grew away from them. We now have a new sphere of friends that don’t drink. We all have to make choices for our lives and if we make them based on other people or what they might think of us we will never be happy with ourselves. Just like finishing that long run you feel so proud of yourself. When you make a decision based on something you truly believe then stick to it you can’t help but have that same feeling inside. It means so much more when you do something for YOU and no one else. Sorry this was so long, I just wanted to encourage you that you are not alone and since this is something YOU have decided it well worth the struggle. Again just like running, if it is worth while there will be struggles along the way. Have a WONDERFUL week!!!
Shorty

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you!!! :)

[Reply]

Megan (Running Foodie)     at 5:31 pm

This is such a great post and really echoes how I feel about so many things. Thanks, Emily :)

[Reply]

Anne     at 5:34 pm

You GO girl!!!!!!! :)

[Reply]

Liza @ Health Nutting     at 5:35 pm

Hi Emily! I LOVE this post. I really learned a lot from it and can relate to it. Thank you!

[Reply]

Shannon     at 5:43 pm

Amen. This is a lovely post that I plan to share with HS Health and FCS teachers. While I only teach elementary kids (and they would not relate), I truly think that some HS kids would benefit from seeing this perspective. Thanks.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I didn’t drink in high school, but I wish I would have had better information on how truly unimportant it is, and how harmful it can be.

[Reply]

Kristie     at 5:44 pm

You go girl. You are an inspiration. Loved the post. Glad you had a good run.

[Reply]

C.     at 5:48 pm

You’re amazing! I’ve been feeling a bit out of place as well. Maybe what I really need is some good exercise! Thanks for sharing your journey!

[Reply]

sirenjess     at 5:49 pm

I love your post. I totally feel the way you do sometimes. I’ve felt lonely at times too. I still drink but I don’t drink as often as I did before. It’s really hard when friends ask me out for happy hour because they don’t understand the concept of having only one drink. I would much rather enjoy the next day and be able to go workout then nurse a hangover.

I’m also really bummed right now because I can’t run right now. I’m trying to stay positive because I can still cross train but it’s not the same as running. It stinks seeing my friends being able to run and I can’t.

Thanks for your great post.

[Reply]

jamie @ jamelafamela     at 5:53 pm

so inspiring!!!

[Reply]

Pam     at 5:57 pm

Hi Emily!

I just have to say that I have been totally inspired by your posts in the last few weeks. I am not a runner, but I’m trying my best to be. I’ve run a few 5Ks, and have the hardest time adding distance to my running… so I decided to up the ante and signed up for the Marine Corp 10K in October. I’m hoping this way I’m forced to push past the mental roadblock and start adding distance! Your posts about having bad runs, walking, going slow, etc have been so reassuring to me – if an experienced runner like yourself can have bad days, it’s ok for me to have them, too!

I, too, have cut back on drinking in the past few years and I *hate* when I decide not to have a drink people always question it or try to pressure me to “just have one”. I seriously do not understand why people care so much, and their first assumption is that I’m pregnant or trying to get pregnant. But really, some days I don’t feel like a drink, or don’t feel like wasting the calories!

Random question for you – where do you stash your iPod or MP3 player? I see headphones in your pictures, but no armband… do you carry it by hand?

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

OMG, that is AWESOME! Congrats to you for taking that first terrifying step of making the commitment. :) Bad runs are totally part of the learning and growing process – each one makes you stronger.

On the iPod – I have a shuffle clipped to my shorts! :)

[Reply]

Sarah     at 5:58 pm

What a beautiful, well-written post. I’ve often felt like this, and you captured the feeling to a T.

[Reply]

Marleah     at 6:03 pm

I’m new to your blog (through Kath), and have really enjoyed reading for the past month. But I really, really enjoyed reading today’s post, as well as going back to the post you wrote about quitting drinking. I totally get what you’re saying about feeling isolated and lonely because of your decision to not drink, because I’ve been there myself. So much of our socializing revolves around food AND drink. But, I still wouldn’t trade how good I feel almost everyday because I don’t drink anymore. It’s good!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Welcome to the blog! :)

[Reply]

Aileen     at 6:11 pm

Emily, you are an inspiration! I am a new follower (connected via KERF), and am quickly becomming a big fan. I honor you for the authenticity and commitment you bring to your journey. And I hear that while it isn’t always easy, you are creating an incredible life for yourself. It is a different life than what you expected a few years ago — but richer, and more treasured because it is taking you to new places. Congratulations on discovering more of who you are. And thank you for the fabulous blog. – Aileen in St. Louis

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Welcome, welcome! And thank you! :)

[Reply]

Melissa @ HerGreenLife     at 6:11 pm

Way to keep your chin up and stick to your guns! Reading some of your posts from the weekend, I understood the position you were in (that was me DURING college). Now, while I will have a drink on occasion, I’m still the one cutting out early. Alcohol or no, crazy late nights don’t make for fun days to follow!

[Reply]

Ashley @ Nourishing the Soul     at 6:15 pm

I think that while your situation (in terms of giving up drinking completely) is unique, we all go through quite a transition from the party atmosphere of college to “adulthood.” While some obviously stay very connected to the college identity, the rest of us do move on and it can be really hard to figure out who exactly we are without a drink in our hands to help us navigate our insecurity. It seems like, despite a little loneliness at times, you’ve done a fantastic job of figuring out who you are and sticking to your values. Kudos to you, Emily!

[Reply]

Lisa (bakebikeblog)     at 6:24 pm

What a fantastic reflective post! Congrats on a great run!

[Reply]

sarah     at 6:28 pm

attagirl.

[Reply]

Danielle     at 6:37 pm

Thank you for this great post! I am glad that your run ended with you realizing that you truly are “right where you belong” :)

Yea for a great run, too!

[Reply]

Jennifer     at 6:52 pm

This is my first time EVER making a comment on a blog, but I felt I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your blog and recipes. This post in particular spoke to me. I went through something very similar. I actually was in Cincinnati too for a few years after school and would go out and feel so out of place at bars and staying up to 2am when all i was worried about was my morning runs! I didn’t drink and felt i should just SUPPOSED to go out and hang out at bars and stay up late. I was miserable in that scene. When I moved to Raleigh, I stayed true to myself and found my running, biking, swimming friends whom I love and am such a happier person being true to my personality. I fit in so much better with the people who have a healthy lifestyle and don’t make fun of me for going to bed every night by 10pm! At 30, I am so much happier with who I am and who I chose to share my life with. Stay true to yourself, you really do seem like such an incredible person and I thank you for sharing your life in order to inspire so many people.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Oh wow – I feel so honored! Crazy that you were in Cincy – I had some late nights of my own in Mt. Adams and Mt. Lookout. :) Awesome that you have a healthy group of friends in your new spot!

[Reply]

Marie     at 6:59 pm

Great post, Emily! I am one of those rare people who just never enjoyed the taste of alcohol at all. Though I’ve drank in college and beyond, it was never really a big part of my life and I’ve never been judged for it, which is nice. If people can’t accept you for who you truly are, I guess they aren’t really your friends. ;)

[Reply]

Tara     at 7:03 pm

This post totally speaks to me, Emily. As a 29 year old single gal in NYC, I have long struggled with the feeling that I “should” go out to bars on the weekends and drink with my friends. They are my friends and I love them, but I really do not like that scene. I never really did, but it was easier to convince myself to go out when I was younger. I recently made the decision to not go out for a friend’s birthday celebration because I had run 12 miles that Saturday, was totally exhausted, and knew I wouldn’t make it to the event which wasn’t starting until 10pm! I explained my feelings to my friend and she understood that I needed to take care of myself (and I took her out to lunch soon afterward), but it’s constantly a struggle to navigate what I feel like I should and should not do. I feel like no one I know understands this so it’s been pretty hard lately. Anyway, I love your blog and your commitment to a healthy lifestyle!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I’m glad your friend was understanding. Readjusting our weekend schedule was weird at first, but now it’s just normal to us. You do get used to it! :)

[Reply]

Amanda @ Cakes and Ale     at 7:04 pm

I’m not a non-drinker, but I totally appreciate and respect where you’re coming from.
I drink wine, and always in moderation. However, most of my friends still love to party, something that just doesn’t fit in with my lifestyle anymore. I haven’t been hungover in years, and don’t intend to ever be again. Some people don’t understand, but I’ve gotten past letting it bother me.
True friends will never let you feel weird about not being a drinker / partier anymore – and trust me, there are others out there who aren’t into partying much either!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Lucky for me, my true friends have been really supportive. The ones I lost weren’t that great anyways. :)

[Reply]

Lee     at 7:15 pm

As someone who does drink, and sometimes too much, I really find your commitment to not drinking very inspiring.

I’ve never run in Roswell. Perhaps I should. Looks nice. Although it’s about 30 minutes away.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you! That trail is worth the drive. Beautiful scenery, and water fountains everywhere!

[Reply]

Ginna     at 7:50 pm

Great post Emily! I don’t think your wrong in feeling not connected to the party scene. We aren’t spring chickens anymore are we?! We definitely don’t do the party scene anymore and can barely manage to stay out late. I think that feeling is part of growing up. You are definitely not alone!

[Reply]

Jen     at 8:16 pm

Ahh, that’s where we lived in Atlanta! We literally picked our apartment so we could be on the Cochran Shoals part of the Chatahoochee River rec area. I ran every run on that trail for 3 years and you just made me really miss it!

And awesome post! I know exactly how you feel :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

SO WEIRD! Such a big city – strange that you were right in that same spot! I absolutely loved that trail. Wish Charlotte had something similar.

[Reply]

Katiegirl     at 8:26 pm

Great post Emily!

Isn’t it an incredible feeling knowing you’ve made healthy choices through your diet and activity level?

I feel so amazing after a good run. (I certainly don’t run near as long as you so I am definitely inspired!)

The rewards that come from healthy living are much greater than a weekend bender followed by a two day hangover.

Ciao!!

[Reply]

Amanda     at 8:34 pm

Love this post…so much.

[Reply]

christina cadden     at 8:53 pm

Great post! Good for you!

[Reply]

Chase (TheChaseProject)     at 9:06 pm

Oh my gosh, why am I crying!? Great post. I love when long runs teach you more about yourself than you could ever know.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Me too. Sometimes I find running to be very emotionally therapeutic.

[Reply]

Mandy     at 9:14 pm

I recently started reading your blog and I wanted you to know that this post had me in tears – especially your last sentence. Your committment is beautiful – you are a beautiful person. Thank you for your blog. I may not comment often, but I am here reading and enjoying. Thank you.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Aww thank you! Welcome to the blog! :)

[Reply]

Susan     at 9:15 pm

Nice post. You go girl!

[Reply]

Hilary     at 9:35 pm

day-amn girl! YOU ROCK!

Like you so eloquently stated, some people will badger you to death about it and ya know what ? Some of us don’t give a hoot what others are doing? (or maybe I’m too self-absorbed to notice…hmmm.) :) Good for you. Great post!!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Hahah thank you :)

[Reply]

Katie (Sweet Tater)     at 9:45 pm

i love this post.

[Reply]

Chelsey     at 10:03 pm

Your post yesterday sparked a thought in my head about how different my lifestyle is from others as well. I linked back to yours because I can’t get over how many times I feel like an anomaly most days in the real world. It gives me such comfort on here to kno wthere are other people “like me” who choose to be healthy and conscious of their actions.

Even when you feel down about it, just know how many people on here love and care about you!

Your run looked amazing – i love Georgia… it is beautiful!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

You are definitely NOT alone. :) THANK you for being so nice!

[Reply]

Lorinda     at 10:08 pm

I didn’t drink for many years in my 20s because I was on medication for migraines. I used to get hassled at parties, etc. but luckily I had an excuse I could use. I don’t know that I could have been that strong on my own–good for you! Like anything in life, so often people’s negative reactions are not even about you but their own insecurities.

Eventually you attract people in your life that, even if they don’t make the same choices as you (whether it be alcohol or meat), respect you enough to respect your choices and realize that they can enjoy their time with you whatever you are and aren’t drinking/eating.

I LOVE your blog and loved your beautiful post. I’ve had several difficult runs lately so thanks for the reminder that they can be fabulous!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you!

[Reply]

Jaima     at 10:16 pm

Thank you so much for writing this post. I’ve been reading healthy living blogs for over a year now and was a little afraid to start my own as a non-drinker. I used to run in those crowds of late nights and horrible hang over next days and it has been a real struggle to leave that behind as well as a lot of friends who that came along with that scene. Thank you for showing that it is a positive choice we have made and for exploring your own thoughts on lonliness, because it made me feel less alone!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Don’t be afraid to be honest about who you are!

[Reply]

Deva (Voracious Vorilee)     at 10:32 pm

I love your philosophy and the bacon analogy in this post. I believe that staying true to oneself is the best thing – and knowing that it is the best thing for yourself? Amazing.

[Reply]

Jaclyn     at 10:57 pm

I live & work in the Roswell area. I passed the sign for Cloud 9 on my way home and decided I’m going to have to pay a visit – too funny that you went!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

DO IT!! It is heaven. Peanut butter cup is to die for.

[Reply]

Carrie     at 11:07 pm

Totally and completely moved by your post. So many of my same thoughts were written out by you in such a beautiful way. You are very inspirational and are such a wonderful writer!! thank you for your time each day

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank YOU! :) Makes me smile.

[Reply]

Gillian G.     at 11:26 pm

Hi Emily! I found your blog through KERF and it’s great! I’m planning on going to culinary school after i graduate college; I love reading about other peoples’ experiences :)

I can relate so well to this post – I have never been into the party scene, and I often feel a little left out, or like I should feel left out. Even though I know it’s just not who I am, other people don’t accept it as easily and it’s hard not to feel rejected sometimes. This was such a great post about those feelings, and very inspirational that you stayed true to yourself. Thanks! :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

So awesome that you are going to culinary school!!

[Reply]

Jackie (Peaces of Earth)     at 12:24 am

I really love this post, Emily!! My story is similar to yours, except that I still do go out and drink occasionally. But compared to college I’ve made a complete 180. When I was training for my marathon I hardly ever went out and felt SO great. I woke up feeling ready for the day, not wanting to sit on the couch all day. My life just has WAY less room for an incapacitated hangover day. Like I said, I do go out occasionally and always wonder the next morning if that extra drink was worth it. Sometimes I feel like an outsider, or “weird” for not wanting to party all the time and it really can separate me from some people. It made me realize how many relationships these days are purely based on the common interest to drink and get drunk. That’s not the kind of relationships I want. It’s hard to navigate between wanting to fit in and following where your heart is leading you. I think that you know what is best for you and your true friends want you to be happy. Thanks for sharing this! xoxo

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

It became very obvious very quickly which of my friends were, as you said “purely based on the common interest to get drunk” and which ones were true, wonderful friends. The silver lining is that I appreciate my best friends even more, since they have been so supportive.

[Reply]

CJ     at 2:33 am

I have a friend who doesn’t drink but it’s never been a big deal to anyone. She comes along to everything (our work schedules require a lot of after work socialising) drinks soda and no-one really bats an eyelid. If she’s ever asked, she just says she gets really bad hangovers and people nod knowingly and move on.

I understand why wine-tasting events would be tricky but happy hours etc I’m sure you could navigate. It’s really whether you want to or need to.

- CJ

[Reply]

Neen @ Broad Bean to Runner Bean     at 4:09 am

awww its so great to exchange the hangovers for early morning work outs isnt it! you do feel a little bummed out to leave the party early, but you feel like a hero in the morning when you’ve done your workout and everyone else is still suffering! well done!

[Reply]

JL Goes Vegan     at 5:38 am

GREAT post.

[Reply]

Heather     at 8:24 am

Emily, this post totally spoke to me. I am in a place right now where all of my friends are still into the late night weekend partying while I think midnight is staying out really late. It is hard for me to not participate with them, but I love that I can get out of bed at 7am on Sunday and get my butt moving without a pounding headache. It helps me to know that there are others out there facing the same stuggle. Thank you.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

You’re welcome! :)

[Reply]

Kath     at 8:27 am

Running with me is as fun as that path :)

Want to get manicures on Friday?

[Reply]

Elizabeth     at 8:35 am

Very inspirational and motivational. I too am on the verge of stop drinking all together. I stopped for about 3 years but social situations are hard to handle. I just have one or two when I do drink, but really do not enjoy it. Thank you for this post.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Good luck to you!

[Reply]

Becky     at 8:43 am

I love this post! It really resonates with me. I didn’t necessarily quit drinking – I don’t drink much – but I did change my lifestyle in a big way. With the changes I made, came changes people saw. What others see and what is true don’t always match. For awhile, my friends simply couldn’t understand the choices/changes I made. They are more understanding now, but it’ll always be different. Luckily, I like myself a lot more now and have made friends that support me.

[Reply]

Christina     at 8:56 am

This was a great post. One thing I’m coming to terms with in having a healthy lifestyle is that I can’t have my cake and eat it too- there’s no magic bullet that will make me have fun sober when everyone else is drinking a lot, or fit in at the all-you-can-eat BBQ. I guess I have to come to terms with that. Thanks again for sharing your feelings and challenges.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Tooooooooootally agree with you. A big part of it is learning to accept that things will be different, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

[Reply]

Jaime     at 11:02 am

Maybe I’m just feeling emotional this morning, but the end of your post made me tear up. Sometimes I forget we have the power to change ourselves, to evolve, to do it in a way that is healthy. I look at myself and I think, “There is just no way.” And that’s not true. Thank you.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Awww thanks. The power to change is always there. :)

[Reply]

SentimentsbyDenise     at 11:16 am

It is so refreshing to read a blog that centers around healthy living without all the alcohol that seems very “in” these days. (Seems like so many other blogs I read mention it in nearly every post!)
I appreciate your honesty and commitment to honoring your decisions for what is best for you!
Your recipes are great! Your commitment to exercise is inspiring! Keep up with all of it – your blog is one of my very favorites!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you so much! I like to think that I bring something different to the blog world. :)

[Reply]

Tracy     at 11:32 am

Be proud of yourself for your running and your decision to stay strong with your commitment to a healthy lifestyle!!

I really think you’ll find it gets easier as you get older. Once you and the people you’re around start having kids you’ll find something completely new and different that you have in common. Fewer and fewer will want to stay out late partying when 1 and 3 year olds will be waking you at 5:00a.m.!!
Also, I’ve made so many great friends since my kids started school. Other moms and dads will have so much more in common with you than any friends who are still interested in drinking all night!! You have a ton of great friends to make in the future! :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

The friends I have back home are all starting to grow out of it now too. It’s just hard to make new friends in new cities! It will definitely make being a mom much easier. :)

[Reply]

Beth @ DiningAndDishing     at 11:42 am

I REALLY love this post Emily! I feel like I’m at a bit of a cross roads myself at the moment. I am all about healthy living but come the weekend I feel like things often go totally out of whack. I go out with my friends, we drink too much and I wake up the next day feeling terrible. It doesn’t seem worth it to me anymore, yet I don’t know how to cut it out of my life without alienating myself. It’s certainly been on my mind heavy lately, so it’s great to see your persepctive :).

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Before I quit, I struggled a lot with how hypocritical I felt for the differences between my weekdays and weekends. You’ll find the right balance for yourself eventually.

[Reply]

wishful nals     at 11:43 am

emily, this post made me want to cry! good for you. it isn’t always easy to stick to something, especially when it makes for a lot of explaining and self-doubt. it must feel so good to realize that you did make the right decision, for you, and to really reap the benefits of it! i don’t know you (at least, not really) but am proud of you and how far you’ve come! you go, girl!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

thank you so much! :)

[Reply]

Lauren     at 11:50 am

TWO. THUMBS. UP.

[Reply]

Erika     at 1:46 pm

I really enjoy your blog. I am always the one “left out” when it comes to parties and drinking. While it can be very lonely I don’t wish I were part of “that crowd.” Just this past weekend I was up early, did yoga, dishes, laundry, weeded the flower bed, cleaned the house and made myself an awesome breakfast before my friends were even out of bed.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

It is so nice to feel so much more productive! :)

[Reply]

Lindsay     at 1:46 pm

Really great post!! What an incredible story from just one morning of running. There are tons of great trails full of runners, walkers and cyclists (sometimes too many!) all over DC for you to explore soon :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I knoooooow! I can’t WAIT to get there!!

[Reply]

Jess     at 1:51 pm

I loved this post – I know exactly what you mean about those early saturday and sunday morning runs. I love being up before the world is on those weekends and knowing that instead of getting up with a pounding headache, I am giving my body the respect it deserves. Keep running, Emily! And keep posting your amazing vegetarian recipes!

[Reply]

Darcy @ shesingsatthetable     at 4:04 pm

Congrats on a great run! I felt the same way jogging at a park near my house this morning–it’s so great to see people out early in the morning getting a good workout and chatting with friends and family. It does beat nursing a headache on the couch, but I can understand how you might feel a little wistful about the party scene sometimes. I love the blog–thanks for the inspiration!

[Reply]

Kristina @goodnweird     at 4:28 pm

Thanks for this post Emily. I’ve been feeling this way recently and this just put a big ole smile on my face.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

:)

[Reply]

Christy     at 4:32 pm

What a great and amazing post!!! You are a true inspiration to a healthy lifestyle. I read your blog daily may be checking 2-3 times a day for something new. I look forward to reading it everyday! Thanks!!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thank you! Hope to be posting multiple times a day once my internship is over. :)

[Reply]

Eva     at 6:51 pm

Emily,

You are amazing and definitely my favourite blogger!! I’m glad you know where you fit in because we are all here for you.

Eva

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Oh wow – thanks!!

[Reply]

Annie@stronghealthyfit     at 7:05 pm

You are so inspiring! Sounds like a really amazing place to go running- I find it so motivating when I see a lot of other people out walking, running or biking when I am exercising.

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Me too! I love crowded trails.

[Reply]

Rebekah @ Rebeltarian     at 7:14 pm

I had a similar Sunday morning run complete with PB, and a long weekend with very little sleep. It was worth it after that nine miles though. It felt great!

[Reply]

Jasmine (sweet and fit)     at 10:25 pm

I feel exactly the same way about social events lately – I also don’t drink because of my health condition and medication, but to be honest I dont feel as if I’m missing out on anything at all, everyone always seems so disappointed in me at dinners and parties. There is so much more to life than drinking. Unfortunately there are so many social events centered around drinking, making it hard to find new friends in a new city. I hope we can meet-up when you come to DC! =)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Can’t wait to meet you! :)

[Reply]

Lindsay @ The Ketchup Diaries     at 8:34 am

I know I am late to this party, but I just want to congratulate you for sticking with what you believe in. There IS an entire world that has gone on without you and while it might sting, it’s not realy where you want to be, so don’ worry about it. I think this will all dissipate as people start to have kids, too. I would want to hang out with you – drinks or no drinks – because you seem super fun!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Aww thank you! :)

[Reply]

jeff     at 11:16 am

Fantastic post – we’re gonna miss you when you move from our little southern town!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Aww I will miss you too!! Even more reason for you to bring the girls up for a visit. :)

[Reply]

Holly @ Self-love and Running     at 12:17 pm

This was a really great post! Very uplifting and positive. Inspiring!

[Reply]

Meaghan     at 2:07 pm

Hey Emily,

I made your homemade sports drink for my 10 mile training run and it was great. It kept my energy up and it tasted really good. How long do you think your sports drink will last in the fridge for?

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Yum, glad you liked it. I would say it would be fine for a week or so.

[Reply]

jess     at 2:52 pm

I live in Roswell and you were running through my backyard.:)

So crazy that I read your blog everyday and now you are writing a post that literally “hits home” !!!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Let’s get together next time! :)

[Reply]

Katie     at 3:23 pm

I can relate all too well with no longer being the partying kind. To be honest, I’ve always loved quiet evenings in, even during college. But to go with the crowd, I participated in the social scene, beer drinking, alcohol games, dancing on bars, etc. etc…

I’m having a hard time trying to keep some of my friendships these days due to the fact that they are still in their party-mode. We are 27. I don’t mind going out every now and then, but mainly for a special occassion. Not a random weekend. But I’m just glad that I’m not the one ruining my hard earned weekends with nursing a hang over. ;)

[Reply]

Elizabeth A.     at 4:29 pm

Hey! I have been reading your post for quite awhile and am just now taking the time to comment you! You honestly are quite an inspiration with your nutrition, cooking expert-es, and workout. My plans after obtaining my Bachelors in Nutrition Foodsystems MGT, are to go on to Johnson and Wales. I thought it was awesome to see that you go there!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Ahhh, crazy! Are you going to the Charlotte campus? We should talk! :)

[Reply]

Elizabeth A. Reply:

Oh my gosh hey!!! Yeah Charlotte is the plan! I went to the Open House in April and totally fell in love with it. I was very excited to see the strong culinary aspect of JWU. I finish my Bachelors December 2011, then I have a 3month internship (hopefully @ the Biltmore). Then finally I can go onto JWU. I would love to talk, that would be totally awesome!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

AWESOME. You will love it. Email me if you are in the area and we can get together!

[Reply]

Elizabeth A. Reply:

Yeah sweet! School is back in session and I am feeling it ;) na I love it, but hecktic. How is school going for you?

[Reply]

Andrea     at 4:40 pm

Sorry…I’m normally a lurker, but I have to respond and say how motivated I am by this post. What an inspiration and I couldn’t agree more. My life has changed for the better since having children (when you certainly can’t afford those hangovers), but also because I’m paying more attention to my health and how I feel. I SO wish I would have started this journey a lot sooner in life (say college), but better late than never. Thanks for the great post!

[Reply]

Emily     at 4:41 pm

I’m new to your blog, and the blogging world in general. I just wanted to say hi and I totally understand how you feel about the giving up drinks and feeling kind of left out and lost. I left the drinking and partying world and I have a lot of friends who give me a hard time about it, but I just don’t find the need for it anymore. It’s the same thing every weekend. I hated feeling awful every Saturday and Sunday morning. I got lazy and blah on weekends. I just wanted to find better way to spend my time and money. But I feel healthier, more productive, and better about myself so it’s been worth it!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Welcome to the blog! Congrats to you on the lifestyle change. It gets easier with time, I promise.

[Reply]

beth     at 9:25 pm

It can be easy to have a happy social sans alcohol. There are lots of people our age who don’t drink; The trick is meeting each other! The best way to do that is to join activities where you don’t usually find alcohol, such as your early morning park adventure. Next time you go, take a few friends and a football or soccer ball. Then you can invite strangers you meet there to help you get a game started. That way you can meet new people who are up for non-drinking fun.

Another great place to look is cantra dancing. Its an easy dance for beginners to learn, loads of fun and a great place to meet people who are ridiculously happy while sober. Check online to find a contra dance near you. Learning to swing dance or do the lindy hop would also be a great way to become a part of a large, crazy fun community. The best way for me to meet healthy friends has been joining armature sports teams, especially Ultimate Frisbee.

If you want to host a party and are worried about keeping your guests entertained without a dry bar, try hosting a craft night, where guest do art projects together. Or invite everyone over for charades or Men vs Women pictionary using a large dry-erase board. Or perhaps a soft ball slip ‘n’ slide party where there is a slip ‘n’ slide between 3rd base and home plate. Or a kite-flying extravaganza.

[Reply]

Cindy     at 4:51 pm

Wow, I’m not kidding, i just got a lump in my throat. I’m so proud of you (and I don’t even know you!). Kudos to you and your new adventure :)

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thanks Cindy! :)

[Reply]

Heather     at 3:14 pm

THIS IS GORGEOUS.

[Reply]

Marcella     at 9:56 pm

That is, by far, my favorite post you have ever written.

It makes my commitment to a healthy lifestyle, which challenges me sometimes with social pressures, so clear and defined.

Thank you.

[Reply]

leatitia     at 1:54 pm

Going through your favorite posts, I came across this one. You made me tear up! This is exactly why I like waking up early and go for a jog. Running had injects energy, happiness and fun in my life. Something clubbing never did.

I’m glad you’re finding peace with your decision.

[Reply]

Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Leatitia! :)

[Reply]

Mariah     at 12:31 pm

Hi. I forget how I found your blog, but I’ve been a regular reader since about a month before Cullen was born. I find your blog quite inspiring. The other day, I stumbled onto your post about why you quit drinking and I don’t think I could’ve found it at a better time. I’m in college, and everyone around me drinks. Recently, I’ve been struggling more and more with that. I do not drink, and I have no interest in doing so. But constantly being around alcohol is really difficult sometimes, and I feel out of place frequently. I guess what I’m trying to say is, it’s nice to know that there’s someone that feels the same way as I do. Makes the world feel a little smaller, I guess. Thanks.

[Reply]

Emily Malone Reply:

You are most welcome! Thanks for finding me! :)

[Reply]

Elizabeth     at 6:49 pm

You probably don’t check the comments on this post, since it’s a bit older, but I wanted to tell you, I’ve been a long-time follower of your blog. I started reading in the early moths of my pregnancy with my daughter, while you were pregnant with Cullen (they’re a month apart!). I stumbled over this post one day while I was browsing around, and it has always spoken to me. I’m a vegan, a runner, and a single Mum, and sometimes I feel totally alone because I haven’t yet developed a network for myself of like-minded people. Reading this reminds me that no matter how I feel, I’m not alone :)

[Reply]

pulsatile tinnitus     at 7:47 am

I pay a quick visit each day some web sites and websites to
read posts, except this web site provides quality based writing.

[Reply]

TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

(required)

(required)




    Welcome.

    A resource for healthy recipes, cooking tips, and inspiration for active living. Welcome!

    @DailyGarnish

    On Babble.

    On Facebook.

    On Twitter.

    Favorite Things

    On My Recipage.

    Categories




© 2014 Daily Garnish
All content is protected by copyright. Please do not reproduce in any form.
Blog design by Splendid Sparrow