TALES FROM THE TRAIL (AND SOMETIMES THE ROAD TOO)

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Milestone!

I woke January 17 with the idea of ending my running streak.  I was wiped-out physically and emotionally.  I seriously didn’t see how I could manage even one mile!  But with encouragement from running friends, I decided to run the 29th consecutive day.  I ran it a little grudgingly.   First I did some weight training, some floor exercises and ab work, then with an errand to run in town, I ran to it, did my errand.  Then I simply ran back, making a loop (because I’m a loopy gal) totaling 2.44 miles. 

This morning, I felt renewed.  Yet, I needed the trails to wipe my brain clean of its clutter, useless clutter.  And so after making breakfasts, packing lunches, then getting the boys off to school in two shifts (different start times), I finally hit the trails at Aliso/Wood Canyons park. 

I took off on Aliso Creek Trail during a chilly winter morning (for coastal Southern California) dressed for the cold.  In fact, I feared that I would regret leaving my gloves behind.  Believe me – that, I did not regret.  I warmed up really quickly.  To top it off, I felt strong.  Surprisingly strong on my 30th day of Streaking into the New Year.  I never would have thought.

I didn’t have much time today, so I wasn’t sure which loop I’d run this morning.  But I was pretty sure I’d run Mentally Sensitive.  Mentally Sensitive is the best trail in the local coastal hills to wipe the slate (brain) clean.  Another great thing about this trail is that I need to run some of Meadows to get there.  And Meadows is one of my favorite local trails.  As is evident by the multitude of pictures I take exactly at this spot:

Meadows’s Subtle, Yet Grand Entrance:

I turned onto Mentally Sensitive with my old friend Blue Heron in sight.  Besides my bird friend, I saw only one other living thing as I ran along Mentally Sensitive, one cyclist, who I hopped into the grass for so that he could pass (even with my deep loathing for tics). 

Mentally Sensitive will probably never be easy.  But I will write this:  IT IS SHORT.  And its views are lovely.  They are more than lovely.  They are majestic.

Running Mentally Sensitive’s Start:

My Feathered friend – do you think he recognizes me?

The Climb is Brutal on Mentally Sensitive:

Yes indeedy, any excuse to pause briefly to snap a photo on this trail (notice the lack of a wide smile here – regardless, I WAS HAPPY):

I reached the top of Mentally Sensitive at about mile four with plenty of energy.  I figured I had enough time for a little detour.  So, instead of turning right toward Top of the World, I turned left and ran into the soccer field above Laguna Beach.  From there, I headed to the “fountain of youth” for a swing break.  I don’t care anymore if people see me – a woman just weeks away from 47 swinging away on the playground.  Playing on the swing set really helped wipe that slate clean.  I didn’t stay too long though, as I wanted to run.  And so run I did.  Off from the swings, I took off for Top of the World.

Swing Break:

Breakfast at Top of the World:

With time fleeting, I ran down Mathis this morning.  It’s a fun trail – a truck-trail of sorts, lots of room, little technicality.  I focused on taking it quickly (without falling).  And I of  course, focused on form.  I felt content, relieved, revived.

So, so happy that I didn’t end my streak yesterday, especially after this morning’s fantastic trail run.  Now it’s take it easy time, though I do plan on taking this streak up to my race.  We’ll see how that works for me.  LOL. 

Running down Mathis:

Miles run this morning on my 30th consecutive day of running: 11 (17.7 km):My Activities Mentally Sen loop1-8-2012, Elevation - Distance

4 comments:

  1. No matter how old we all get, there will always be a kid in us!

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    1. I agree Jeremy. If we are LUCKY there will always be a kid in us. When I was a child, there was hardly a kid in me. It seems the older I get, the more "the kid" comes out. Thanks for reading!

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  2. Love the swing break. I don't have a route called Mentally anything. I do have a few pain in the ... ones.

    Congrats on digging down and finding what was needed to keep the streak alive.

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  3. I love the swing break too. Sometimes I scare myself by swinging too high. LOL. Those pain in the *** ones are fun when THEY'RE OVER.

    Thanks for reading. Hope your streak is still going strong. I did day 31 today. It's going to get to a point when I don't know when to stop.

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