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Sunday, July 1, 2012


I worked all day Saturday, so I wasn’t able to follow my training plan.  But this morning I met Jeremy H. in Trabuco Canyon and he drove that bumpy canyon road to the trailhead where we would begin nearly an 18 mile loop in The Saddleback Mountains.  Parked at the Holy Jim Parking lot on this gorgeous, cool-weathered morning, we commenced a run that would take several hours in the Cleveland National Forest.  First off:  Holy Jim Trail. 

My best time was 1 hour 42 minutes to run up all of Holy Jim.  Jeremy suggested 1 hour 40 minutes.  Two minutes, okay, I’d try.  But inside, I feared that I wouldn’t even make 1:42.  I started off a bit slowly.  But that’s how I run, I conserve energy so that I have “gas in the tank for the entire run,” enough to finish strong and faster than the start.

Ascending Holy Jim:

Even running the entire trail, I doubted I could do 1:40.  In fact, at one point, I got a bit confused and thought I passed 1:40.  That was when I turned a corner of the mountain and saw another climb and corner I forgot about.  I started to slow, but kept on running.  One more glance on my garmin, I noticed that I had not passed 1:40 after all.  The time elapsed read 1:32.  That’s when I began running as quickly as I could.  I didn’t look at my garmin again.  Eight minutes!  I just have to run this last little bit in eight minutes!!.  I saw Jeremy up ahead on the Main Divide and heard him say something (don’t recall what) that made me think I had a chance at a Holy Jim PR.  I found that last tiny steep stretch extremely difficult and wanted to stop and rest so badly.  But I didn’t stop.  I just groaned and kind of laughed.  Upon finally reaching the Main Divide, I slapped my hand down on the trail marker and looked at my garmin.  1:37!  So pleased was I!

Nothing could beat that the rest of the run, though awesome the entire run was.  Difficult yes.  But surely “hard fun.”    Good ole “hard fun.”  The best kind.

Running the Main Divide:

When the gnats came out, they came out in abundance:

Finally reaching Trabuco where it’s basically all downhill from here:

A lovely Trabuco Trail:My Activities Holy Jim Trabuco Loop 7-1-2012, Elevation - DistanceMy Activities Holy Jim Trabuco Loop 7-1-2012


  1. Replies
    1. Yes indeed Rachel! Thanks for stopping by.

  2. I had the chance to run on Antelope Island in Salt Lake during vacation. Until I read the warning that the "gnats had hatched." That pretty much did it for me and I picked somewhere else to run. I'm such a wimp! Looks like you had a great run, despite the bugs. Congrats on the new PR!

    1. Just accept the gnats Lumberjack, accept them. : ) Once you do that, it's all good!