By Vanessa Boon
Oceanside boasts some of the best weather and beaches in the country. With a combination like this, and differential terrain throughout the city, it is every runners dream training spot.
Running by the beach provides a distracting view, nice coastal breeze and plenty of company. “The Strand,” the street that runs parallel to the sand, is 1.2 miles long from its beginning at Wisconsin Street to its end at Breakwater Way and is interesting enough that an out and back run will feel fresh both ways. Cars can drive on most portions of The Strand but the speed limit is 5 MPH and typically pedestrians are given the right of way. A run along The Strand can be continued into the Oceanside Harbor by turning up Breakwater Way and left on Pacific St, crossing the bridge into the harbor and then turning right on Harbor Dr. Taking this street until it ends at the Oceanside Marina Suites is an additional 2.5 miles onto the run which means that a run from the start of the strand to the end of the Harbor and back would be 7.4 miles. Additionally, when the tide is low any part of Oceanside’s coastline is great for soft sand which provides an awesome workout for those calves.
The San Luis Rey River Trail is a bike trail and running trail that is 7.2 miles one way and runs along the river. If you love running with dogs then this is the spot! The only stipulation is they have to be on leashes less than six feet long. The trail’s west end starting point is at Neptune Way and Cleveland St and it continues along until its east end at the College Bridge. The trail is not usually busy during the week but can see a spike during the weekends, holidays and summer. The trail is great for any level of runner because it is mainly flat and paved throughout. Families on hikes and serious runners alike can find enjoyment here. If planning to run the trail, be prepared for a strong head wind at least one way and follow the rules of the road as sometimes bikers head through at a quick pace.
Guajome Regional Park has many trails throughout that connect and offer short to lengthy runs. The main loop is 4.5 miles and goes around the lake passing a small pond in the back. The trail has some small hills but is overall not difficult topography wise. This is a great trail to run with friends due to its width, lack difficult terrain and well maintained trails. Multiple loops around the park are common and it is a great place to work on time consistency and aim for improvement amongst visits. There are many junctions on the trail if looking for variation and the park’s size makes getting lost difficult. Be aware that there is a $3.00 fee for parking.
These are just a few of the great running spots in Oceanside. Runners are always finding new ways to navigate through the city to find the best hills and longest straights, but these are tried and true. Any day is a great day to start running so grab your shoes and head on out. There are plenty of trails waiting!