I'm pretty lucky to live in San Diego for many reasons, but one of the most important is the great locations for running. You can run along the coast or you can run in the trails throughout the county. You can run flat, you can run hills and then you can run mountains. It's all very enticing for a runner and when you get bored, you can easily change your location for a different experience.
Typically, I run in the trails throughout my neighborhood in San Elijo Hills. There is a great network of trails throughout the hood that allow you to change up your run on a daily basis. You can make your run extra hard and run up to Double Peak, which is the highest peak in North San Diego County or you can keep things simple and stay on the smaller trails that connect throughout the neighborhood.
|Trail in San Elijo right behind my house|
|Top of Double Peak looking towards the ocean|
Just on the other side of the main road that takes you into my neighborhood is the La Costa Canyon reserve. This is one of my favorite local trails because it has about a 1000 foot elevation gain and the trail is pretty rocky in places so I can get some technical trail running in without having to go very far. I'll run up and down that climb a couple of times through my run so I can get good hill training. And the views of the ocean are spectacular.
|Trail leading up to the top of La Costa Canyon|
|Top of La Costa Canyon|
There are a couple of other local trails that I really like. One os the trail around Batiquitos Lagoon. This is in Carlsbad and is pretty flat. It's short, so I usually only do about 4 miles when running there. But it's quiet and there are usually some pretty birds to watch as you run along the lagoon. There is also Los Penasquitos trail that is between Rancho Bernardo and Sorrento Valley. It's also on the flatter side and a nice get away from running the roads. There is a water fall you can see about 3 miles into the trail, but there usually isn't much water to behold. Though in the winter, your chances of seeing some water are greater.
|Los Pen trail and the water fall in January|
Most of my long runs are along the coast. It really doesn't get better than that. The views are great, it's mostly flat and there is always a lot of people around so you never really feel alone if you happen to be doing a solo run. And if you happen to run out of water or need to use the bathroom, there are plenty of places to fill up or use the facilities without having to get off course.
|Along the coast at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas|
|Along the coast Carlsbad|
|A double rainbow in Del Mar!|
|The Pacific Crest Trail behind Mt. Laguna overlooking Borrego Springs|
All of my runs now offer such different experiences than anything I ever did when we lived on the East Coast. Growing up on Long Island, there are no mountains and very little true trail running. And running along the coast isn't really an option. And living in the Washington, DC area wasn't that much different. We had the great Rock Creek Trail and the Capital Crescent Trail, both of which I really loved. That was where we did most of our long runs. But they are paved trails and tend to get quite crowded on the weekends so it's just a different experience than what I find here. But I do miss those runs with my DC peeps :)
Where do you run?