Nutmeg State (Connecticut, Duh)

Why yes, I did have a wonderful Friday/Saturday in Connecticut two weekends ago, before my Fitness Friends Sunday, thanks for asking!

I had been a really bad friend to my Connecticut peeps, and it was time to suck-it up and hop on Metro North for a ridiculous fare and get my butt to the Nutmeg State.

It was a summer Friday, so after sprinting through Grand Central, I made a 2:30 train and Melissa picked me up in Milford. We had some time to kill, so naturally, we hit the mall. 

Shockingly, we were able to control ourselves and didn’t end up buying anything unnecessary.  Because really, as much as I can try to justify it, any article of clothing I buy at this point in time is unnecessary. My exploding closets and drawers are proof of that.

Next it was off to our old stomping grounds, Hamden, to pick up some of that oh so classy champagne to make it a true celebration of our reunion. $5 Andre. Poppin’.

We arrived at Allison’s apartment and I leaped into her arms. Then I made myself food. Typical. We got ready, chatted, Melissa “erased my face” aka did my make-up just like the good old Quinnipiac days, and we headed over to Town Walk to Nicole’s apartment where we popped the champagne and drank some delicious beer (obsessed with UFO grapefruit and raspberry… and Redd’s). Then it was off to New Hay Hay.

Of course, I graduate college and New Haven gets an awesome tequila bar named Geronimo’s, with a menu containing 12 different margaritas! I was so pumped to try it out. I perused the menu before even getting to Connecticut, obviously, and I definitely need to go back for their quinoa stuffed pepper at some point…

My friends are L0SAHS (yeah, you heard me guys) and ordered two pitchers of the strawberry basil margarita, when there were so many better options on the menu! The strawberry basil was verrrrry sweet and fruity- delicious, but reminded me of a daiquiri, not a margarita.  

Throughout the night I was able to try two others. First was the Santa Fe (1800 silver tequila, triple sec, pineapple and cranberry juices and fresh lime). This one was super smoky tasting, which no one else liked, but I did because it was something different.  I also tried another one- all I know is it had jalapeno in it and was spicy and it was delicious. I’m not a fan of spicy things, but jalapeno and tequila just go so well together.

The vibe of this place was awesome. It wasn’t too crowded (maybe because colleges weren’t back in session yet) and the crowd was fun but not crazy and annoying. The spiral staircase was a little tricky after 3 or so margaritas, but it kept things interesting.

No night out in New Haven would have been complete with some drunk food- pizza, to be exact.  We walked across the street to BAR where my dreams came true and I accomplished a bucket-list item…their mashed potato pizza! First of all, can we talk about the fact that a slice of their pizza is actually like 3 slices of pizza? SO GIANT we were in heaven. 

(Ok, so I'm not the world's best drunk food photographer...don't hate)

The pizza there is super thin crust. 

Complaints- b

ecause the crust is so thin, and loaded with mashed potatoes, cheese and bacon it got a little soggy. That being said, I liked that these toppings were paired with a thin crust because I didn’t feel AS guilty while eating it. I didn’t appreciate the fact that they absolutely burned the shitttt out of the crust though. The crust is the best part! And it was virtually inedible because they burnt it so badly. 

To a group of 20-somethings who had been drinking all night, this stuff hit the spot. But overall, I think the execution could have been better (and maybe it is done better, when the pizza-makers know they aren’t feeding groups of 20-somethings who have been drinking all night!) I’m still a fan in general of the idea of mashed potatoes on bread with cheese and bacon. How can you not be?  It’s like the best of Ireland, Italy and ‘Merica all in one.

The cab ride home made me so angry, because cabs in Connecticut charge ridiculous amounts of money. I’m still grumpy about it.

Somehow, I woke myself up the next morning for my scheduled long run. My plan said 16, but I was hurting and I had told myself that if I could bust out 12 miles after a night of drinking, I would be proud of myself. My shins had been bothering me, and I was mentally preparing myself to have to stop early. It's harder for me to cut myself a break than it is to push through pain. But after running on shin splints for months and winding up with a stress fracture and on crutches for a month, I know that I need to be smarter. SO I set off on the Farmington Canal trail not really knowing what to expect.

(My friend's apartment is literally right on this trail! So convenient!)

At the start, I felt great. I wasn’t hurting as much as I had anticipated, and I started thinking ok, 12 is definitely doable, and I shouldn’t completely rule-out doing 16. I kept running, knowing that no matter how many miles out I made it, I had to still make it back. After a stop at a deli to use their bathroom, I had to really push myself to make it to the end of the trail at the 7 mile mark. I turned around, intent on making it to 16 at this point. I got back to my starting point at 14 miles and planned to do a mile in the other direction and then back to my friend’s apartment. Miles 1-14 had been pretty good. Sure there were stretches where I questioned if 16 miles were going to happen, but for the most part I was cruising along- the weather was absolutely perfect, I never needed my music, the trail was flat for the most part, and I was thinkin’ thoughts and trying to enjoy. But those last 2 miles- 100% mentally and physically exhausting. Every joint in my body was aching and I knew I was basically crawling along at a snail’s pace. But I finished. And after being prepared for a disappointing 12 miles- being able to finish 16 felt great. Except then I started thinking about the fact that on October 5, I’ll be expected to feel like I did after those 16 miles…and then run 10 more.

That thought is a lot to handle. And so I’ve kind of been pushing it to the back of my head.

I got back to Nicole’s around 11 and quickly showered and went with her to pick up a bagel from Breuggers. I was tempted- but being from Long Island and NYC, I know better than to trust chain bagels ;) I knew I would be disappointed. So I just stuck with getting a McCafe and eating the oatmeal I had packed for myself when we got back to Nicole’s.

Allison came over and we headed out to Nicole’s apartment complex pool. HOORAY! Sun! Something I have NOT had enough of this summer. It was lovely laying out and talking. And then Jon joined us! And he had gotten a new phone! No more BlackBerry. Crazy.

Nicole and Allison did their ice bucket challenge, Melissa came back from her MBA orientation (congrats!) and we grilled up some eggplant and hot dogs and I did my nails before being dropped off at the train station to head back to the city.

I definitely can’t let it go that long without seeing those 4 again! Thank you for a great mini vacation, friends! You’re the best!