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Welcome!

Thanks for visiting my blog! I love to share gluten-free recipes, running adventures, and stories of everyday living with you.
I hope you find usefulness or inspiration from within these pages of living life as a gluten-free cook/baker, runner & multi passionate artist.

Let the Training Continue: On to the 50K Ultra-Race!

  Newport Reflection

Twenty-one days ago, I ran the Newport Marathon.  With joy in my heart, and a skip in my step, I moved my way over those 26.2 miles with a smile.

After returning from my little vacation to Vegas and LA, three days later to driving to the coast to spend the weekend at the beach running the Newport Marathon, I was completely prepared for a calm, quiet week (and weekend) at home.  Monday and Tuesday passed uneventfully, I even signed up for an online workshop on Creative Visualization for Wednesday evening.  Much to my surprise, I received a text from my sister - she was at the hospital... and going to have a baby!  And there went my quiet, relaxing week...!

After a long evening, and an even longer morning, watching, helping, and cheering my sister on, my niece came into the world at 5:55am.  She is amazing.  The most adorable newborn I have ever seen - and her mother was incredible.  I did not know what to expect watching her go through this process, and beyond being one of the most amazing experiences to be present for - watching a life coming into the world - I saw strength and bravery in my sister that was simply awe-inspiring.

The Cutest Baby on Earth.

Needless to say, after a sleepless night, I slept a little that morning, worked the afternoon, and crashed Thursday night.  Friday they went home, and I spent time each day this past weekend with my sister and brother-in-law and my little niece.  Sunday morning, I woke up thinking "why does it feel like I haven't had a weekend at home in weeks...?"  Well... three weekends, not at home, Alaina.  That's your answer.

And somehow, three weeks after my last race, without missing a beat or losing my stride, I am continuing on - training for another race.  A bigger race.  An Ultra. 50 Kilometers somewhere up on some mountain in Southern Oregon.  I might die.  But chances are, if I train enough and don't hurt myself, I'll end up having a lot of fun on the Siskiyou Outback.   And I'll get to see my friends from the Newport Marathon!  As well as see my very good friend Cass, whom I have not seen in so long (and I am sure she will totally kick my butt in this race).

Today was my first ever 26 mile training run. TRAINING!  It is so weird to think that today, I ran a marathon... and it wasn't a race.  Ha!  Who knew I would ever reach this point.  The cool thing is, if it had been a marathon, it would have been a PR!  I clocked in at 4:40 for today's run, and after a marathon three weeks ago that was 5:02, that feels pretty good.  Oh, and it was beautiful.  And I am sunburned.   (oops, forgot sunblock...)

Geese!  Adult and fluffy!

Convention Center silhouette at the Steel Bridge

My run was perfectly lovely - 10 miles solo to start at 6:15, the next 5 miles with my girlfriends, peaking around garage sales in the neighborhood, another 4.5 miles solo, and the last 6.5 with my Mom.  We finished with brunch at a little breakfast diner in Sellwood, and then headed back to garage sale for good deals!  This day leaves me feeling extremely satisfied... and exhausted!

Tomorrow I have the pleasure of running with a friend from high school - I anticipate great conversation which should make 10 pretty easy...   (Can 10 miles be easy the day after 26?  Here's hoping...!)  Then it's a baby visit day.  So excited to snuggle that little one again!  I still can't believe I'm an Auntie!!!

Have you ever trained for something more than a marathon?  

How did you keep up your pep on the "difficult" (aka VERY HIGH MILEAGE) weeks?

Happy Running, everyone! ~Alaina

The Long Up-Hill a.k.a. Running from SE Portland to the Zoo

2014 Newport Marathon Race Recap