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36 hours in Edinburgh

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Earlier this year I got accepted to speak at a conference in London and when I bought my tickets I decided to fly in the weekend before. I originally thought I would fly to Switzerland and go running in the Alps, but didn't really think about the fact that a lot of the trails would be covered in snow in mid November. Once I realized this, I started looking for trail races in the UK. I found a half marathon an hour outside of Edinburgh called the Glentress Winter Half Marathon. The race was the morning after I arrived, I figured if I could run 62 miles on a few hours of sleep I could probably run 13. The caveat was I would have to drive from Edinburgh to the race, I have driven in some pretty crazy places but always on the left side of the car, I was nervous about driving on the other side of the car & road. 


I decided to pick up the car next to my hotel versus at the airport, since I would only have to drive a mile after 15 hours of fly. I decided that would be enough to boost …

Running for the sake of running

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It is so easy to get caught up in how many miles you are running each week or your strava stats, especially when you are training for a race. I spent the better part of this year training for the Waldo 100k in August. I really loved pushing myself outside of my comfort zone training for Waldo and feeling myself get stronger. Susan and I were so happy that we completed a 100k, which we had not done in 4 years. After the race a took a full week off of running to let my body recover and I thought I would be so excited to get back on the trails without having the pressure to train for the race. But that actually wasn't the case, I didn't feel like something was missing, I just didn't feel excited about running. I was doing it because it was part of my daily routine and I am afraid not to do it because it so much of who I am.



Honestly it wasn't until 2 weeks ago (it is now mid October) that I started to feel the joy of running again. Susan and my husband were both out of tow…

Badger Creek Wilderness loop

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Back in July, we scheduled a Sunday run in Badger Creek Wilderness to pre-fatigue us for our long, day-off run the next Friday (Timberline Trail around Mt Hood!). We started at Gumjuwac trailhead right on Highway 35, with a big climb up to the saddle and Lookout Mountain. 
Even though it was a perfect hiking weekend in summer, we only saw a handful of people—most of them at the top of Lookout, since there’s a nearby trailhead you can drive to for a nice three mile loop. It really feels like wilderness on the far side of Mt Hood.

July adventure run: Mt Hood circumnavigation on the Timberline Trail

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We timed our July day-off adventure to be the longest training run, four weeks before for our biggest race of the year, Waldo 100k. For a 40+ mile run, it's hard to beat the Timberline Trail loop around Mt Hood. Our last time on this route was four years ago, in 2015. Since then the infamous Eliot washout-- which was technically closed-- has been rerouted further down the mountain, adding a bit of distance and safety. We were excited to see the changes.

Girls Gone Pasadena: Part Two

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This is part 2 of 2. If you haven't read Part One, please click through.
For Saturday, our second day, we wanted to run in the Santa Monica Mountains with a view of the coast. We used the Trail Run Project app again to find a good start at the East Topanga Fire Road Trailhead, with a 4.8 mile point-to-point and 1,200 ft of elevation gain. Then we added a little out-and-back to the Parker Mesa overlook along the way, since that was said to be the best viewpoint.

Girls Gone Pasadena: Part One

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Many people who live in the Pacific Northwest plan for a "sun break" in the long rainy season-- a chance to escape the damp and darkness. After months of running routes limited by snow levels, muddy shoes, and pre-dawn starting times, we were ready for our own version: a long weekend in the Los Angeles area.

Mary's Peak 50k

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I've heard of Mary's Peak 25k/50k/50mi for a few years, but it hasn't been on my radar as it's not near a mountain or widely known as particularly scenic. This year, with our "A race" in mid-August, the 50k stuck out to us a a good training race with decent climbing (about 5,000 ft), only a two hour drive from home.


Ann drove down in her van to camp, and I drove down with my family to spend the night in Corvallis. As is customary, Ann picked up the race packets for both of us since I didn't make it in time. In a surprising move, however, I had my family drop me off early at the start at Blodgett Elementary School for fear of always being late, and I was one of the first people there.

The race director was hanging out and very friendly. He made a point to chat with everyone, and offered his cell phone number in case we needed anything during the race. We loaded up on two school buses and made the slow, windy drive on a narrow, gravel road to the start.

Aft…