Trip Recap: Oregon

Hi everyone!  I’m going to do a combo post today with the rest of my trip to Oregon (if you missed my recap of the Columbia Gorge Half Marathon, go here!) and what’s been going on with the Whole Life Challenge this week.  Spoiler alert:  some crazy food stuff happened and I learned a lot about what my body can handle now!

First, I’ll talk about Friday.  I packed lots of compliant snack options for our flight down to Seattle, but the real food focus of the day was on one thing:  CHIPOTLE!  It’s my favorite place to eat in the Lower 48 and I really miss it.  Andrew chose a compliant salad, but I went with my favorite: barbacoa tacos with beans and cheese!  The cheese tasted very different than I remembered but I felt good after the meal.  And then we noticed a Ben and Jerry’s right next to Chipotle and since Andrew has been missing ice cream like crazy we decided to split a small cup of Chocolate Therapy.  It was so overly sweet and gave me an actual sugar high.  We both felt awful!  We drove down to Portland and spent the night there before our trip to the Columbia Gorge.

IMG_6899True love  ❤

On Saturday we spent the morning shopping (hello TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and Trader Joe’s!) and ate at Panera for lunch.  I figured that since it was carb loading day my body would like some pasta and bread.  But the pasta was so cheesy and made me feel awful!  I was quickly learning that lots of cheese and anything sweet gave me an awful stomach ache and made me feel tired and sluggish.  Next we headed out to the Columbia Gorge.  We took the detour on Historic Route 30, and I highly recommend it!  We saw some amazing views and passed so many waterfalls!

IMG_6901Vista House

IMG_6903Our view of the gorge from Vista House

IMG_6912It was so windy I had trouble walking!  My hair was crazy!

The best stop was at Multnomah Falls.  It’s the 4th tallest waterfall in the US and it was so crowded.  Somehow in the crowd I ran into Katie, a fellow blogger who recognized me!  She was running the half too and we discussed our race strategies before snapping a quick picture.



Despite the fact that my piriformis/butt has been hurting me for weeks and I SHOULD have been resting before my race the next day, Andrew and I decided to hike up to the top of the falls.  Seriously, I can’t resist a hike!  It was 1 mile of steep switchbacks, but the view was awesome!

IMG_6934The view from the top!


After the hike the sun started to set fast, so we drove straight to Hood River for packet pickup and dinner at our AirBnB.  We stayed in Mosier which is the area of Oregon where it starts to turn into a desert.  We had killer views from our place of the little town and the desert areas across the gorge!



Since you already read all about race day, I’ll skip to Monday.  I was feeling great post-race (and post-hamburger!) and was excited to travel back to Portland.  Our first stop was at Powell’s Bookstore.  I’m a huge book nerd so I was in heaven!  It’s an entire city block and multiple floors high.  I could live in there.  After an hour Andrew dragged me out of there, but not before I bought 5 books!


Next we hit up a nearby food truck pod.  Seriously, Anchorage needs one of these!  I had a grilled cheese with bacon (one of my top three favorite foods) and had no regrets, although I did start to feel really tired and blah.  Then we went to Voodoo Donut, where there was no line and I ate 2 amazing donuts.  And that’s where my body finally told me I’d had enough.  I felt awful and I may never eat another donut again.  Sugar really messes me up now and doesn’t taste as good as it used to.

IMG_7032Stained glass donut windows!  They perform marriage ceremonies here so I guess it works?


After that we drove back up to Seattle and flew home.  And on Tuesday and Wednesday I proceeded to go through sugar withdrawal again.  Fun times.  I’ve learned that bread and tortillas make me feel fine, but that super cheesy pasta and anything sweet makes me feel so awful.  Overall, I have no food regrets.  I got to eat at places I can’t eat in Anchorage and didn’t stress about what I was eating, but I also reigned it in way more than I usually do when I’m on vacation.  Seriously, all the stuff I ate was how I used to “normally” eat when I lived in Philly which blows my mind now.  Plus I got the chance to learn what foods make me feel awful and what foods I can possibly add into my diet once the challenge ends in a few weeks.  I used up all of my “indulgence points” (freebie points if you eat something non-compliant) and also used my “free day” token on race day to eat whatever I wanted.  And once we got home, all I wanted to do was eat veggies and protein.  It’s awesome that I was able to bounce back after vacation so quickly, and that I was able to keep my eating in check as much as I did.  I usually go hard when I’m on vacation so this was an improvement!

Have you ever been to Oregon?  What’s your favorite thing to eat on vacation?

14 thoughts on “Trip Recap: Oregon

  1. i’m glad that chipotle didn’t make you feel sick; hopefully that means you can have it again at christmastime! every time i’m on vacation, i’m all about dessert. it’s crazy how quickly our bodies get used to sugar after we have it again. i’m definitely having to use november to re-regulate how much of it i’m eating after the candyfest that was october.

    1. I’m glad it didn’t make me sick too! It’s my favorite. I used to be all about dessert but now it just hurts me 😦

    1. Haha I know! I actually ate it in Seattle (we flew in and out of there because it was cheaper) but I’m so lucky I didn’t get sick!

  2. I took a very similar Portland trip and hit the same stops, minus Voodoo (it was 2008 and I didn’t know about it yet). What a beautiful area! I’m glad you felt fine after Chipotle. I like to think of it as a healthier fast food option. I tracked my food last winter because I was getting terrible stomach aches and it’s so depressing to learn that “fun” foods are, in fact, bad for you. Sighhhh

    1. Oh man, you so need to go back for the donuts! They were really crazy (although they hurt me). And yeah, it’s no fun to find out that ice cream actually hurts 😦

  3. This looks like so much fun!! Those views…wow! I really need to plan a trip out west. And I’m glad you got in some Chipotle before the E.coli scare–I just heard on the news that they closed a bunch of stores in Oregon and Washington to be safe. Good timing for you!

    1. Oregon was beautiful! But I’m not gonna lie, Alaska is prettier 🙂 And everyone has been telling me that! I’m so lucky it was still open when I went and that I didn’t get sick!

    1. Ugh I hate it! Does this happen to you a lot? Are you doing anything to make it better? I seriously might go see a PT to get it under control.

  4. Those views are stunning. I love that picture with your crazy hair in the wind 😉
    I’m all about that bookstore! I think I could spend an entire vacation there, lol!
    Isn’t it crazy how changing your eating habits creates an entirely new normal? I used to flavor everything I ate with cheese, and I was lucky if I had 2 servings of veggies a month 2 years ago. But I did a challenge last year as well, and have found I really don’t need all that much dairy in my life like I used to, and that veggies make me feel SO much better! 🙂

    1. Haha my hair was crazy! And I’m right there with you when it comes to cheese. I used to put cheese in everything! And now when I eat it it tastes “weird”. I don’t think I’ll ever completely stop eating it, but I’m definitely going to eat way less – maybe once or twice a month!

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