I guess last week was “Easy” week in my hard-hard-easy weekly plan. Now that the sun shines and the streets are dry, yet the local trails are all closed, I took to a run-about in the locality. I was happy to do it. In fact, I went to sleep last night day-dreaming about this run. My plan was to run down to the beaches, then hop onto the bike trail, run it into San Juan Capistrano and make my way to Arroyo Trabuco, where I’d run until time ran out.
First off, I over dressed. Not three miles in and I had a long-sleeved shirt tied around my waist. AND THEN, my legs did not want to move this morning. My muscles were not sore. I could easily “catch my breath.” Foot pain was minimal (only a minor ache). My legs just felt heavy, in rebellion.
The San Juan Creek bike trail, which I had always called the “riverwalk,” until I started running mainly on trails (Saddleback Mountains in background):
I rather imagined that I’d feel my groove and ecstatically enjoy this run, rather than trudging through it. Surely, I’d feel it by the time I reached The Los Rios District. Perhaps that may have happened if I had not had to take the detour just past the Trabuco Creek bridge. That detour took me up onto the loud, crowded streets. All this too however, was still an adventure. Running is always an adventure, whether or not I’m running trails or streets. There’s little adventures, big adventures, gargantuan adventures. Today was a tiny adventure. I nodded “hello” to a lama. I ran alongside two trains. I’m sure I tripped at least once. And I saw dozens and dozens of people driving about in the busy-ness, while I ran onward thoughtlessly.
At about mile 4.5, I arrived to Trabuco Trail where my feet delighted at the feel of soft dirt beneath them. My destination, Arroyo Trabuco laid no more than three miles away. Though I still had not achieved my groove, I was happy to run today, so that I can run later.
The views of the San Juan Capistrano hills reminded me how much I enjoy this area. About thirty years ago, I rode a train through here on the way to San Diego. I looked out the windows at the same hills and said to my then boyfriend, now husband, “I want to live here.”
I could hear the roaring water way before I could see it. San Juan Creek pounded down on the concrete floor just below the train tracks. A fine mist sprayed my face. For months and months, if not years, I have been able to run across this concrete creek bed. It’s been dry. Today, it thwarted my destination. I could not find a way across the creek without getting wet. The one passage I could find did not look safe – just before dumping into the pool, the only exposed boulders had no flat surface and were drenched. I certainly didn’t want to run across and get my feet wet. Nor did I want to chance falling on the wet, slippery surface. Most other days, sure, I might take a chance or run in wet shoes. Today, nah. My legs were shot anyway. Best to count my blessings for being able to put in today’s miles.
And that’s just what I did on this tiny adventure. I turned around and ran back the same way that I came in.