Feb 7, 2017

San Onofre Bluffs 5K and 12K

On Saturday, January 7, 2017, Ted and I headed up to the San Onofre camp grounds to participate in the San Onofre Bluffs Trail Race. With all of the rain, the course had some re-routing, some mud, and lots of sand which I didn't care for. It was a fun day, but a tough race for me. I felt really good on the first half of the race and was able to keep up my pace, but during the second half I suffered from an upset stomach that resulted in a bathroom detour (hey, it happens to all runners). The sand didn't help my knee at all either. I ended up with a time of 1:31 and 9th out of 20 age group 50-59.

This was the first time I participated in races by RockIt Racing, a newer trail running company. I was really impressed by the organization of the race, and I would definitely participate in another race in their series.  Most of their races are held in Orange County. This race is the furthest south.

Winter Break Reading

Over the winter break, I was able to spend time doing one of the things I love...waking up super early, like four o'clock in the morning while everyone else is sleeping, getting a hot cup of coffee and reading in the peace and quiet. I read a variety of genres, and I enjoyed them all.

First, I caught up on the latest with Stephanie Plum in Turbo Twenty-Three by Janet Evonovich. The books in this series make you laugh out loud!  Even after reading 23 of them, I still can't wait until the next novel comes out. I love following the characters, especially Stephanie and Lula, who are very different from each other and are comical in their own ways.

Next I read the extremely sad and true story of Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon who was diagnosed with lung cancer. His writing is excellent, and he really was able to make me think about what is really important in life. I really appreciate books like this that make you stop and be happy with your life because it is so short and everything could change in one day.

Next up on the list is A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler, a book that was chosen by our book club. I enjoyed this book because it was about a normal everyday, dysfunctional family, a family that just about everyone could relate to. There is comedy and sadness in the Whitshank family.

Pumpkin Flowers is the extremely sad and true story of Israeli soldiers fighting in an unwinnable conflict. It made me so sad to read about these young men who gave their lives in a place that doesn't even exist any longer while ordinary people like us just go on about our daily lives without thinking twice about men and women fighting for freedom. Books like this make me think twice before complaining about insignificant things and make me thankful, even guilty, for what I have.

Next, I read two more books in the Maggie Hope series. No one would ever guess that Maggie Hope is a Top Secret Spy for Great Britain.  She has close ties to Winston Churchill.  This series is not only fun and easy to read, but also contains some historical fiction. There are six books so far in this new series.  I'm now waiting on the arrival of Book 6, The Queen's Accomplice.

Lastly, you can't go wrong with a John Grisham novel. I've read so many but still have many more to read. If you're looking for a book that has many twists and turns, this is a good one. I started reading this book with preconceived notions about what was going to happen, but it didn't turn out anything like it!

It always feels good to me to immerse myself in a novel and forget about the rest of the world for a while! I also enjoy reading some nonfiction to make me realize how good my life has been.