The Gorge on the Run

Warning: long post, because the Gorge is amazing and a trip down memory lane is always fun.

This weekend I made the annual trip to George, Washington (this may be my 7th year out there but I’m still entertained by the name) to the most beautiful place on Earth.

Aka, Heaven's Amphitheater

Looking at this view all weekend.

Beautiful stage set up this year

My 3 favorite people to go to the Gorge with were there (Jen, Jackie, and Ken), and this year marks 5 years since our first trip together out there.

2007 - the core group, don't we look like young spring chickens?

The second year we talked Jocelyn into coming along. Somehow we didn’t manage to get a full group shot but 4 out of 5 ain’t bad.

2008 - Jen must have taken the picture

The next year Ken and Jackie decided to have a baby in July (nice timing, guys) so it was ladies year.

2009 - Ladies night!

Last year things got back to normal with J&K being able to come and Baggins tagged along.

2010 - The year I finally got my Warehouse

This year Kevin and Logan (master marathoner, please teach me your ways) crashed Friday and Saturday nights.

2011 - Do we look like we're melting? Because we were

The original 4 of us sweated away on Sunday night and spent some time reminiscing about the the past trips.

2011- Still melting

And then got a bit silly.

2011- The sun may have melted our brains a little

Even with all the fun being had I made time to get 2 runs in! The Gorge may be beautiful but it’s not the best place to run. I got to look at this for miles and miles.

Just a long, straight road

Friday morning I got an early start so there wasn’t that much traffic and it wasn’t too hot. But Saturday morning I slept in a bit and by the time I got my running shoes hitting the pavement I was already sweating and cars were flying by. So I decided to cut the run a little short and take pictures of the cows.

Moo
Mama cow was not all that happy I was near her calf

As a reward to my running I had a margarita after my second run. Now, normally I’m not really a heavy drinker and am definitely a light weight, but I’ve been even more of a non-drinker during my training. I’ve wanted nothing to do with anything that will hinder my body from functioning at it’s best. So, after one margarita, albeit a pretty strong margarita since Ken made it, I actually fell asleep on the lawn at 4:00pm while a band was playing. That’s quite the accomplishment for a non-napper insomniac! It probably didn’t help that it was 7,000°F (alright, maybe closer to 90°F) and there was no shade, but man, did I feel like the lightest light weight ever! My mother would be proud.

The concerts were amazing, with each night better than the last, and Sunday night Ken and I got to hear all the songs we had wanted, including Halloween! Only took 5 years to hear that one.

We also carried on the tradition of stopping in Yakima Monday morning for breakfast at Waffles Caffe.

I decided to skip the creamsicle waffle...

After 4 nights at the Gorge nothing tastes better than an omelet from Waffles. And, Baggins is still famous even a year later!

Baggins- a food Ironman

It’s a little hard to transition back into real life after such an awesome weekend, but my day tomorrow starts bright and early with my kiddo’s appointment! I went to visit her at her house last week and her mom didn’t tell her I was coming over, just that there was a surprise, and my kiddo was so excited when I got there that she just started jumping up and down. So freaking cute. Sorry other Chemo Pals, I somehow got the most awesome kiddo ever.

This week is all about tapering. I’m oddly zen about the whole running 13.1 miles thing, possibly because my brain hasn’t accepted the fact that the race is in 6 days (6 days!…omg…6 days…). It does help that have about 0 minutes this week to sit and think about it, everything is go, go, go, and then get on the plane to Chicago bright and early Saturday morning! Now it’s off to bed early to try to recover from this weekend’s amazingness.

One last thing, fellow runners, any advice for a first time half marathoner? I want to hear all your wisdom!

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