Race Weekend at Avila Beach

Hi all! I just got home from a wonderful weekend in Avila with my husband and my parents for the SLO Ultra at Wild Cherry Canyon. My mom and I ran the XC Half Marathon – my stepdad has originally signed up for the 50 mile Ultra, but was sidelined by a hip injury (he did a great job of putting aside his disappointment and being an awesome spectator). I’ll post a full re-cap of the race tomorrow!

Since Adrian, my husband, and my stepdad both had the day off work on Friday, they headed up earlier in the day and went for a hike at Bishop’s Peak in San Luis Obispo. My mom’s also a teacher and took a half day, so she was able to pick me up after I was done with work for the day on the way up to Avila Beach. First stop was the Avila Beach Golf Course for the packet pickup. Garden Variety Runner This was the first inaugural SLO Ultra and the packet pickup was low-key, fast, and easy. We got our race bibs, T-shirts, and BBQ wristbands and were on our way to our rental condo within 10 minutes.

We realized that we had brought up all the fixings for a pre-race pasta dinner except marinara sauce – oops! We saw that the Avila Beach Farmer’s Market was going on and since there aren’t too many grocery shopping options in Avila we crossed our fingers that one of the stands would have pasta sauce. When we got to the farmer’s market we were greeted by two adorable alpacas!

Garden Variety Runner

His owner gave me some pellets to feed him, which made me squeal with delight (mostly internally, maybe a little out loud too). I guess I have super ticklish palms (who knew?) and couldn’t stop laughing as he ate.

Our luck continued and we found marinara sauce! And [vegan] strawberry-rhubarb pie! I took pictures, but won’t post them because both items actually ended up being pretty awful. The marinara sauce was way too over-blended and sweet, so it ended up tasting more like tomato soup. When we brought out the pie for dessert my mom almost spit hers out on the table! I think they maybe put in too much citric acid or lemon…the flavor of the filling was a bit too sour to enjoy. Thankfully, we all stuffed ourselves with garlic bread and ended up getting a lot of laughs out of our failed dinner. Like A LOT of laughs…as in stomach hurts, eyes watering, slapping the dinner table laughs…so I really can’t complain and I’m sure it will become one of those, “Remember when…?” stories for our family.

We lucked out that the half marathon didn’t start until 8:30, so we didn’t have to get up until 7 the next morning. Thankfully, the condo we were renting was only about 2 miles from the race start. Speaking of the condo, check out the view taken from our balcony:

Not too shabby ;)
Not too shabby 😉
We left for the race around 8, parked, and took a short shuttle ride to the start line.

Garden Variety Runner
With my mom at the start.
I’ll save all the details from the race for tomorrow’s recap post, but it was somehow both one of the hardest and most enjoyable races I have ever done!

After getting back to the condo, it was shower time because we were all coated in dirt. As in dirt everywhere – I even had lines of dirt in the crooks of my elbows! After about an hour of laying around and waiting for everyone else to clean up, Adrian and I headed next door to Mission Pizza. I was HUNGRY and I have yet to see Adrian turn down the chance to get pizza. We ordered a 12″ pizza to split.

Garden Variety Runner// Mission Pizza

Cheese for him and jalapeño/mushroom for me! We demolished the pizza and then took a short walk along the boardwalk to stretch my sore, sore legs.

We all wanted to get outside for the afternoon, but my mom and I were too sore fore anything too active, so going to visit a local apple farm ended up being the perfect outing. We had planned on going to Avila Valley Barn, but it was closed for a family event (womp,womp). So, we headed down the road to See Canyon and ended up at Creekside Farm. It ended up being another happy accident because it was an adorable family run farm with delicious apples and apple cider. We knew we had arrived at the right place for us when we were greeted by four friendly dogs.

Adrian and I both got a glass of apple cider and my mom picked out two bags worth of apples.

The farm was stunning with rows and rows of apple trees and chickens and turkeys running around all over the property. It had a bunch of cute rustic windmills and wheelbarrows sitting in the front yard.

Photo credit goes to my husband!
Photo credit goes to my husband!
After our apply farm stop we decided to head over to the Harford Pier in Port San Luis since Avila Pier is still closed from last year’s storm. The winds were really picking up as we got out of our car, so we made a quick trek down the pier to look at the sea lions and then hurried back to the warmth of the car.

Garden Variety Runner // Harford Pier

We had dinner at the Custom House and then Adrian left a little while after dinner because he had work today and it was time to get home to our pup (we had a wonderful dog sitter checking in on Winston while we were gone). My mom, stepdad, and I watched a little TV and all were ready to call it a night by 9:30.

My stepdad, Randy, and I both woke up around 6:30am and headed out to grab a coffee for him and almond milk chai tea for me from Joe Momma’s Coffee. Then, we walked on the beach in the morning fog while my mom slept a little longer before heading back to the condo for a breakfast of fruit and bagels. We cleaned up the condo and headed out in the late morning.

On our way out, we saw that Avila Valley Barn was open for the day and decided to stop in since we hadn’t been able to the day before. I had been before, but my parents hadn’t, so I was excited to show them around! We pet a bunch of the farm animals…

Garden Variety Runner // Avila Valley Barn

Cows = my favorite!
Cows = my favorite!

Excuse my lazy Sunday no shower and port-run look...it's a bit rough.
Excuse my lazy Sunday no shower and post-run look…it’s a bit rough.
We also decided to split this delicious cupcake of a muffin…

Garden Variety Runner // Avila Valley Barn
I’m obsessed with carrot cake and couldn’t resist!
Then, we were on our way home. Since Adrian had gone up with Randy on Friday, he drove my mom’s car home on Saturday night; so Randy continued home after dropping me off because he had some errands to run and football to watch, and my mom joined me for a walk with Winston and lunch. After a weekend of eating out and tons of junk food we were both a little too excited about having a homemade salad!

Garden Variety Runner

We said our goodbyes and I jumped in the shower. Then, I slathered my face with a vitamin C serum, put on my alien-looking Bright Eyes Masks, and sat down to write this post. Let’s hope I can get up off the couch after sitting for over an hour!

Revive my tired skin please!
Revive my tired skin please!
On a different note, a post today would not be complete without mention of taking the time to remember the tragedies of 9/11. Thinking of all the brave first responders and of the families that lost loved ones ♥

What did you get up to this weekend?

Ever been to Avila Beach? An apple farm?

Leave a Reply