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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Tapering? on Arroyo Trabuco/Tijeras Creek Loop

I love these gray, cool August mornings. What’s better than that for an early morning group run? Aiming for ten to twelve miles, I really intended on cutting back my miles, if not now, then this coming week. It’s the TAPER before Bulldog. I’m always nervous about THE TAPER, but now that I’ve got two toes angry with me, I think it’s best. Let’s just call it “resting up,” before Bulldog.

Anyway, Saturday morning, the group of four of us found ourselves lost (for just a bit) running the roads looking for O’Neill Park. Luckily, I wasn’t leading, because I still don’t have a good feel for the geography or direction of the local mountains. And we weren’t really even in the mountains, more like at the base. When we finally did find it, I was amazed to find myself on a trail in O’Neill Park that I’ve run before, but had arrived to by a completely different route. I had no idea we were even in the vicinity. I’m only now slightly able to recognize and name the peaks, figuring out the valleys and canyons – yikes.

Sheila, Kelly, Tom

The run was lovely, relatively flat, with minor rolling hills (except for a few moderate climbs towards the end). We ran through several creek crossings. And then, best of all, we ran through that charming shaded trail that the high school cross country runners call “The Jungle.” And when we got lost for a second time, well, not really lost, just off onto a dead-end trail, we spooked three deer. What a delight to see them spring away to take cover behind nearby vegetation. If I didn’t say, “Deer!” as soon as I spotted them, we may have had a better view for a longer amount of time.

Headed Towards "The Jungle"

"The Jungle"

So more distance added from the back-tracking there, Kelly jokingly hollered to me “How’s that taper going, Lauren?”

We ended Saturday’s run with some climbs in the sun. On the way back into the high school parking lot I caught a glimpse of the pool and yearned to hop that wall and jump in. Back at home, I didn’t nap, in fact, I didn’t feel wiped-out at all. So, Sunday, I woke early to quench my thirst for the pool and swam laps at the gym (2,000 yards).


Awesome Old Tree (& gotta love that shade!)

Me, Sheila, and Kelly (perhaps a display of her and Sheila's newly coined phrase: Direction Disorder Syndrome)

Miles run Saturday: 13.83 (I guess, the taper starts this week, and Thursday and Friday REST – let’s see how that goes) : )


  1. DDS. That's pretty funny. As I told Tom I've witnessed people getting lost more than once on that loop you ran!

  2. That's a nice trail -- funny thing, I didn't know we got lost 3 times (I think Tom kept one secret : )