Job Interviews

Job Interviews

I never thought of myself as an anxious sleeper, but I just sent an email to some peeps I really want to love me (because I love them) and tried to go back to bed but just COULDN’T and my heart hasn’t stopped racing since. I’m just so nervous/excited/full of anticipation!

I have a month at the most left here in Montana, and I’m so ready to prepare for the next step. Things have been moving quickly and hopefully they continue to do so. Two weeks ago I applied for five jobs, and two contacted me for interviews the next day. Certainly was not expecting that at all!

So I’ve had three interviews with these people so far, and both are great, great, great for my career goals. One is even super awesome for my personal goals – settling down and being able to move in with Steven. We’re a year out from our wedding and I’m ready to not be long distance! (7 years is way too long.)

Anyway, the current frontrunner asked me for a follow up to my follow up email, and while I may have gone a little overboard with my “succinct” summary, the entire page I wrote was so motivational and wonderful that I hope they’ll forgive me for taking their prompt and sprinting with it.

I thought it would be fun to recap my professional/interview life to clear my mind of these jitters.

  • My very first job was in the nursery at my church. My boss needed a little extra help one day and I just never stopped for four years.
  • My first “real” job was at Dominos Pizza. I was a sign waver, didn’t have to interview or fill out an application, and luckily it led to me working inside and being an assistant manager. Also knew someone there.
  • In college I missed working, so I applied for my Auditorium job. It was sort of an intense application process, completely with essay writing, job shadowing, and an interview with 8 people. I worked hard to get that job and was so excited I jumped on Steven yelling “I have a job! I have a job!” when I found out. The Aud became my home and my coworkers my family.
  • My first summer in Bloomington, I had recently started thinking about going to vet school and got an internship at a rehabilitation center. I enjoyed that work and was good at it, and volunteered for a year after that. I was so embarrassed in my interview though, because I wore business casual and my interviewer asked me why I was so fancy that day. I made up an excuse about a fraternity event afterward.
  • The next summer, I got a job at a kennel. I had been interning with the vet all year and the GM needed more help, so I filled out an application and didn’t need an interview. He tried to convince me to stay, which I would have, but I had been promoted to Assistant Manager at the Auditorium and wouldn’t have time for two jobs during the year. Sad to say goodbye. I wrote my first resignation letter for that job, which was a little weird but the pressure he put on me to stay made me feel like a regular note wouldn’t be enough.
  • My last summer before leaving Btown for good, I had two interviews for jobs at the Office of Sustainability and ended up getting one of them. Whee! I turned down an offer from Americorps for a field job that would have been great, but staying in Btown to finish minors and say bye to friends was important. Also getting paid was important.
  • Had a phone interview for the SCA and took their offer for the fall. I still wonder how many people he interviewed.
  • Last winter I enjoyed being at home and didn’t think too much about the search. The holiday season turned out to be a terrible time to start looking for a job anyway. I started applying in February and probably turned in at least 10 applications. I got 4 interviews: 1 went terribly and I was so glad they didn’t ever call back, 1 went well and I was really sad they didn’t call back, and 2 offered me positions. That’s how I ended up here in Montana.
  • This summer I’ve applied to 6 jobs and should have started way earlier, but here I am with two options still open and FINGERS SO TIGHTLY CROSSED that one of them works out. I’M READY GUYS. LET ME LOVE YOU!

I’m not trying to brag, I’m just demonstrating (to myself) that I really have a lot of interview experience and don’t need to be so nervous, because I’m pretty sure I can find something even if these don’t pan out (but they will, they have to!) My resume is pretty awesome but I’m ready to stop adding to it so frequently. This helped my anxiety slightly, so now maybe I can get myself to the field to catch some birds.

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Missoula Half Marathon Recap

Missoula Half Marathon Recap

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Today I crossed a big thing off my bucket list – a few big things, actually. I ran my first half marathon, without walking (which probably fulfills some goal I hadn’t formally made yet), and in doing so completed one of my new year’s resolutions of running 8 miles without walking. Seven weeks ago I needed motivation to get back into running and found this race. I told my roommate about it and asked if she ran, to which she replied “no, never in my life,” but she wanted to do it with me anyway, so she started training! 

My goals were, from hardest to minimum:

A. Finish in less than two hours

B. Finish in 2:10

C. Finish

I loosely followed Hal Higdon’s Intermediate training plan and originally was going to stop my long runs at 10 miles. Then I started thinking more about my goal pace and got excited about possibly finishing in under 2 hours, so I knew I needed to run further to make that happen, so my longest run was 13.2, which I did in 2:09 with stoplights and shoe tying and walking breaks. Despite that success, I wasn’t sure I could meet my 2 hour goal.

I wrote some splits on my arm in sharpie so I could keep track of my goal – I was going to try to run 9:15/mi for the first three miles, 9:09 for the next four, 9:05 for the next three, and at least 9:00 for the last 3.1. The start was rough – hardly anyone started where they should have for their pace, and there were even some walkers out there even though they were supposed to wait. I was trying really hard not to go out too fast, and I don’t have a fancy watch to pace myself with. 

My first mile ended up being 9:55 – not a good start for my goal! So, I picked it up and ran an 8:05 for mile 2 which got me caught up (and :30 ahead!), so I told myself to take it back a tiny bit and then just relax and keep going. I didn’t want to slow down at the beginning, but I didn’t want to use ALL my juice, either. I knew I wouldn’t be able to turn it way up at the end so I just wanted to stay where I was comfortable once I found that spot. I was about 2 minutes ahead of schedule the whole time (about 9:00/mi) so I was pretty happy. My buns were burning so I didn’t want to do more than that and feel worse. Splits: first 6.1k – 34:10 (8:59/M) second 5k – 27:18 (8:48/M) third 5k – 27:51 (8:59/M) fourth 5k 27:09 (8:45/M) – Pretty steady! I was proud. And all under my goal pace of 9:09/M. (Deep down I really did want to finish around 1:54-1:56 but I was already worried about even making 2 hours). I wanted to go as hard as I could for the last 3 miles but I really didn’t have it in me, sadly. Even the last mile I couldn’t turn it up until I had the finish in sight. At that point I got really excited again and it was all worth it.

I took a gel and gatorade at 2.6, and ate the gel around 3.5, right before the next station. I think I got gatorade again there. At the third and fourth I got water, and gatorade at the fifth. At mile 10 I missed the gel, but I had an orange slice, gummy bears, and water. The gummy bears were a bit of a mistake and I almost dropped them, but I just held them in my mouth for awhile and they didn’t hurt my stomach. Although, that might be around where I got my second side cramp (first was at 5 miles). I ran through all the aid stations except for mile 11. I’m not sure why I decided to walk, but it was only for about 5 seconds so I could gulp my water – my legs felt like jello and it was sort of a mistake, because it took me awhile to get back up to speed and that’s where my mental issues started. I had felt really excellent and my brain was quiet up till that point. 

My final time was 1:56:30 (!!!), I came in 44th in my age group, 311 out of women, and 607 overall out of about 4200 runners. I really couldn’t have asked for better, although I do have some tips for myself next time.

I want to sign up for another soon so I keep up my focus, but I don’t know where I’ll be so I can’t. BUT the main things I think I need to work on are speed work, hills, and strength. I felt like I was going to tear a hamstring if anything weird happened or if I pushed too hard, but otherwise I could have done more. Also, my training runs were all around 9:30/M pace and they say your race pace should be about 2 minutes faster than that, so speed is definitely one of my weaknesses – I don’t like being uncomfortable.