I love running, but I am an inconsistent runner.

Right now, I am tired. My body is a little sore. I have been taking it easy on myself. I signed up to run the TarHeel 10 Miler, last weekend, but I considered skipping it.

Who would know? Who would care?!

But I decided to pick up my bib and race packet because I wanted the free shirt.

I hauled my ass into gear and drove out to University Mall in Chapel Hill. I planned on hitting a few stores, including Southern Season, before heading back home to Raleigh. I walked into the mall and bumped into one of my friends, Lindsey, and her mom.

Lindsey said, “You should run, tomorrow. Ashley is running it, too.”

They are both poopskateers — aka elite runners — and I never want to let them down; however, I totally thought of punking out because I have no soul. But after I bumped into Lindsey, I heard my name yelled no less than six times in the food court.


Dammit. Could I keep walking? Could I avoid eye contact? Could I pretend like I didn’t hear my name called from the long line at the gay Chik-fil-A?

No, I could not.

That’s when I decided that the hand of God was firmly steering me in the direction of Kenan Stadium for a 7:30 AM start time.

But I wasn’t sure I had the energy to run. I hadn’t really thought about my diet in months. So I walked back into Southern Season and started grazing on free samples of cheese and crackers.

(Mmmmmmm. Free germy cheese. Delicious.)

I pounded a free hunk of Käserei Studer and decided, uh, yeah, I should stop acting like a hobo and buy a wedge of this cheese. I also picked up some Italian chocolates, a loaf of bread, and a bag of Zapp’s Spicy Cajun Crawtator potato chips for my husband.

(I’m an athlete.)

I came home, put the cheese in the fridge, and noticed something funky on the label. One of the ingredients was ANIMAL RENNET. I called my husband at work and asked, “Yo, what’s animal rennet? Is that animal gunk?”

And he said, “Didn’t you read my thesis, girl?”

My husband wrote his Ph.D. thesis on cheese, and of course I never read it. That’s why I didn’t know that — per Wikipedia — natural calf rennet is extracted from the inner mucosa of the fourth stomach chamber (the abomasum) of slaughtered young, unweaned calves. These stomachs are a by-product of veal production. Rennet makes the cheese happen.

OMG. I am a hardcore vegetarian and I bought murder cheese. Most of the cheese in my fridge is made from non-animal sources. Except this one. Ugh.

So, yeah, I wrote this long-ass blog post because I need your help on an ethical issue.

– Do I eat the cheese because I’ve already purchased it?
– Do I throw it away (and stick to my belief that meat is murder) but waste a young calf’s life?
– What should I do with this murder cheese, dammit?

Find me on Twitter and let me know.

Also, I finished the race in 1:52 — exactly the same time as 2013. Last year, I trained and prepared. I stressed and meditated. I made sure to eat a balanced diet of carbs and protein.

This year was better. I rolled out of bed, drank some Powerade and ate samples of murder cheese.

Holy shit, I am an athlete.