Thursday, July 18, 2013

California...So Far

If I waited to do an update upon returning, I know the post would be novel-length and photo-heavy. So instead, I'm popping in after a very full day to update you all on the beginning of our trip!

We're staying with my brother-in-law, Scott, while we're here. While he was at work on Wednesday, Matt and I stopped in a park to get a run in. This was supposed to be a 5-miler for me, but these Florida legs are not accustomed to hills of any kind!
Cresting one of many hills...It was way steeper than it looks!
We called the run after three miles at a pretty pathetically slow pace. I would have been disappointed, but today I was able to do the five miles as planned, so I redeemed myself.
I took a short break to climb a tree and chase a squirrel.
After the run, we went to Venice Beach and Santa Monica Pier and walked around. There's a ton to see! I love that the beaches have areas filled with vertical ropes and parallel bars - Californians seem to really love working out on the beach.
Mountains right beside the beach? Yes, please!
Self-serve yogurt...I got lemon and the original tart flavor. Matt got salted caramel popcorn yogurt!
Enjoying the beach together.
Finally, we walked along the Santa Monica promenade and watched some entertaining buskers. The best was a six year old Korean boy playing drums like a pro. I was super impressed.

We literally walked five hours straight yesterday. I'm shocked I was able to run today. (I wore my compression socks to bed.)
Sunset at Santa Monica Pier.
Rivaling Florida for gorgeous-points.
(Videos and pictures of the day are on Instagram!)

Today was super full. We got to Hermosa Beach early and rented Matt a longboard. He skated behind me while I tackled my five mile run.
What a good husband! He doesn't like to run two days in a row, but didn't want me to run alone in an unknown place!
The boardwalk that spans these beaches is 22 miles long; I ran into Manhattan Beach, then turned back.
Gorgeous beach on one side...
The run was much flatter (but not flat) and breezier, and the run felt perfect.
...Gorgeous houses on the other! (I am super excited about my new running shorts.)
We hung out on the beach for awhile and watched the volleyball tournament that was going on.
Stretching on the sand was great...doing planks on the sand was BRUTAL.
This photo makes me happy.
After the beach, we went to LACMA, the LA County Museum of Art. You may have seen the outdoor display in No Strings Attached. 
This is art, apparently.
I love getting to see original art by my favorite artists, especially Chagall, Matisse, Magritte, Pollock, Warhol, and Degas.
I look terrible, but I couldn't resist posting a pic of me beside a genuine Degas...We don't have a lot of art in Florida.
We also saw lots of contemporary art, like this awesome installment by Chris Burden:

My feet are absolutely exhausted! I'm glad my runs for the week are over for awhile!

Have you ever been to CA?
Do you like to rest on vacation, or go-go-go? I like to rest, but Matt loves sight-seeing and being active.
What style/time period of art do you like best?



  1. Welcome to my state! Of course, the state is incredibly long, so you are about 12 hours away from me. Still, I have been to all of those places several times, so the pictures feel really familiar. What's funny, is Southern California runs are super flat and fast for me. I love them. Enjoy the rest of your trip!

    1. Funny story; we were going to go to San Fran but realized we were "6" hours away (probably meaning 8 because of traffic)! I can't believe how far everything is here! 3 miles takes like 20 minutes to drive!

  2. I want to go to CA so bad!! I went to LA with a girlfriend right before I got engaged and was 100% that girl searching for famous people in Starbucks... we did see Lance Bass in the grocery store. Anyway, i want to go back and these pictures need to be shown to Justin to convince him! Keep having fun!

    1. Next time I update, there will definitely be more pics to convince Justin! I'm talking seals in La Jolla and gorgeous views from Griffith Park! I want to look for stars, but Matt is totally uninterested lol!

  3. Looks like you are having a blast! I've never been to California, someday I want to visit. I like to go, go, go on vacay, hubby likes to lay around and rest. Enjoy the rest of the vacation!

    1. This is my first time out's weird, because I hyped it up in my mind for years, so it almost feels surreal to be here!

  4. I love vacation recaps!! I always find it hardest to workout out on vacation way to get the miles in. I am sure the beautiful views helped with motivation ;)

    1. For sure, seeing all the views helped. But CA is like a runner's paradise! I've seen at least 100 runners a day out here...seeing so many makes me want to put on my shoes, even if I've already gone that day lol

  5. Looks like you are having an awesome time!!!!
    Gosh, I need a vacation!
    I would love to run along the beaches in Cali!
    The hills would be awesome training!!!!

    1. The hills are awesome training! I used to be great with hills, but can definitely tell how much fitness I've lost. These things are killer!