Last Saturday was my first time running with the Orange County Team ASPCA group. We had such a good time! The group met up at 7:00 a.m. at Yorba Regional Park and we had a chance to chat with each other for a few minutes beforehand. I was one of three people doing the advanced training run (7 miles) this week, so after some dynamic stretching, we started the first leg together.
We quickly spread out, as we don’t all run the same pace. So, it was nice to just soak up the cool air and views of the nearby Anaheim Hills on my own. There were some herons around the first part of our run on the Santa Ana Trail. And lots of people were out there early, trying to beat the heat. In fact, when I arrived at the park, I was shocked to see that the parking lot was full. It definitely warms up here around 10 am, so it made sense that people wanted to get in their workouts early.
Luckily, the course was really well marked with orange cones every half mile and water at miles 2, 4 and 7. I don’t typically drink much on my runs, but the sun and dry air made me pretty thirsty. I really enjoyed the trail, but was even more pleasantly surprised with the path through the shady and green park. If you know Southern California, you know it’s mostly dry and brown. So, this park is a little diamond in the rough. The outer path of the park stretches for 3 miles and brings you back to the area where we all parked. It definitely made the miles fly by.
At the end of our run, we met back at the ASPCA table and snacked on trail mix, pretzels, gatorade and water. We also posed for the photo above with fans featuring Larry the dog. Larry is the mascot for the No Pet Store Puppies campaign to end puppy mills. He’s often spotted at ASPCA events, too.
Several folks brought their pups out to run with them on Saturday. One of our team members adopted her dog Lacey just two weeks ago so that she would have a running pal. 🙂
Victoria, our SoCal coach, is a really energetic lady. She’s funny and extremely supportive of everyone, no matter their fitness level. Originally from London, she’s been living in California for the past 8 years. She frequently runs marathons and practices yoga. This is nice, because at the end of the run, she teaches a new yoga pose each week that is especially helpful for runners.
So far, thanks to some incredibly generous family and friends, I’ve raised 24% of my fundraising goal. Please consider skipping your soy latte (or your drink of choice) today and donating that $5 to efforts to end animal cruelty! To donate, please visit my fundraising page or send me a note if you’d rather donate by check. Every little bit helps! Thanks, friends!
Photo credit: 1) Victoria, 2) me, 3) Victoria.