Bouncing Back in Week 15 of WDW Marathon Training

After last week’s disaster, I bounced back this week with an almost perfect week of training. I made all 3 training runs and missed on the 1 gym workout. It was the complete opposite of the week before (1 training run, 2 missed runs and 1 missed workout). So, I’ll take it. The hard part of training for the Walt Disney World Marathon is that the last month of training is during the holidays. That means giving up a few things in order to be trained. I’m still a work in progress when it comes to finding the balance of getting all of my training in and still enjoying the holiday season and all it has to offer. One thing that makes me happy about this week is that I got the three training runs in along with a crowded schedule and a fun week. Here’s how it went down…


On Monday, I arrived at work to find that the Premiere of Saving Mr. Banks was going to be at the Studio! They set up the red carpet during the day. It was a pretty exciting day to be on the lot! Sometimes, the glitz and glamor of the entertainment industry is out on display where I work. Those days are really fun. It was kind of fitting that they would stage the Premiere of the film on the lot. After all, a lot of the movie was filmed here. One of those days, I even saw Tom Hanks while filming. I spent the entire lunch break eating in the outside patio of the commissary so I could watch. The excitement over the Premiere gave me the energy I needed after such a busy weekend. I was very tired by the time I arrived home from work and happy that it was a scheduled rest day from training. There were moments in the day where I contemplated running to atone for such a bad week prior. Glad I didn’t listen to that voice. I absolutely needed the day off. Instead of working out, I finalized my Christmas running playlist and added the new songs to my phone. I’ve added a tab on this blog that shows my Christmas list (in order). My wife and I also got more of our Christmas decorations up. We’ve been so busy that our decorating has had to come in stages. We finally have a real size tree to decorate! So, I had to buy a few things we didn’t previously have…like a star…


and a tree skirt…


My wife and I are big Disney fans. So, our tree is very Disney.


Here’s the whole tree…


On Tuesday, I could not wait to get home from work to run. Two things kept me motivated all day long. First, it had been a week since I last ran. Second, I had Christmas songs to run with. This is a first for me. I’ve never had a Christmas run/workout playlist to exercise with. The weather was a little cold for this Southern Californian that evening. However, I ran 6 miles in a fantastic time for me. The cold temps combined with the fun Christmas music left me feeling great all run long! It’s been a while since I had a run that felt that good. On top of that, when I got home, I found this…


Our MagicBands had arrived!


As you can see, I got the red band and my wife got the blue one. Combining this fun arrival with all of the runDisney related news of last week is just another reminder of how close the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend is getting. Less than a month to go!


On Wednesday, I got to see a screening of Saving Mr. Banks (read the review here). So, there was no exercising on this day. The screening started at 6pm. One awesome thing about watching screenings like this one is that we don’t have to sit through trailers for upcoming movies. We just get to watch the movie. I love this idea! Saving Mr. Banks is a movie that is an absolute must see for any Disney fan or fans of Mary Poppins.

On Thursday, I ran 6 more miles along the same route that I use for my weeknight runs. This time, the motivation was to have a better week than the last one. So, no excuses were allowed. We had a holiday cookie party on the floor of the building I work in. They had one of these last year and it’s amazing how much food people bring in. I did my best to not overeat. However, the timing of the party made it so that I couldn’t eat dinner. I felt very full. However, it did make for a mental battle over going out for the training run. I wondered how far I would make it without proper fueling. Much to my surprise, I finished ALL 6 miles. In spite of being underfueled and a little tired, I found a way to finish all 6 miles. This run was unlike Tuesday’s run. It was hard right from the start. Mentally, I was unsure of myself which made the tiredness so much harder to overcome. The second mile was painfully hard from a mental standpoint. I was tired and actually in tears for part of the mile. This mile is a combination of going uphill or flat. So, it’s not easy. I know that in the 3 mile loop I repeat on these 6 mile runs, the 2nd and 5th miles are the hardest because of this. However, each time my body tried to convince me that I was too tired, I reminded myself that at the end of that 2nd mile, I got to go downhill for the 3rd. All I had to do was make it to the end of the mile and I’d be okay. The payoff on that night? The third mile was my fastest! My finishing time was pretty close to what I had done on Tuesday which also helped me feel good about going out and running. When the marathon gets hard, I hope that I can come back and remember this training run in particular. This one was a real battle. In the end, it turned out better than I would have thought.

Friday featured another Christmas party of sorts. The Intellectual Property group (the one I work for) at Disney had their annual holiday lunch. Although, this year, the event started at 3pm instead of our usual noon start. So, I wasn’t entirely sure that it would be a meal or just hours dourves. Again, I held back on consuming too much. It was a fun time of just being social with those whom I work with and for. The IP holiday lunch used to be a pot luck at the VP’s home and eventually morphed into a meal at a restaurant. To be honest, I sort of miss those pot lucks. However, it is nice of the VP’s to pay for a lunch for the entire IP group. Friday night was another rest day. By the end of the week, my wife and I were both pretty tired. So, we enjoyed a relaxing night in.


On Saturday morning, I was up and ready to run again. This time, it was 7 miles. I just added a mile to my usual 6 mile loop. Strange thing about this run is that (on the first loop) almost all of the traffic lights were green when I arrived at them! That never happens. As a matter of fact, I didn’t see my first red light until the third mile. It was a frosty 42 degrees out when I started. When I finished, 58 degrees. That’s a pretty big change for a run that lasted about an hour and a quarter. It’s also exactly why I had to start when I did. The temps were going to be in the mid 70’s on Saturday. This was probably my best 7 mile run yet! I followed that run up with my first chore of the day…laundry! Fun times! I also had to take my car in to check out the cause of flat tire. Fortunately, the tire was covered under a warranty and I got out of the tire shop without having to pay anything! Later, the wife and I got our grocery shopping done and ended the night with watching The Santa Clause. It was a busy and pretty good day!

Sunday morning, we started off the say by watching one of my sisters in law sing in her church choir’s Christmas musical presentation. It was her first time being in a choir and she did fantastic! She’s come out to see me perform in things like the Disneyland Candlelight Processional and other choir and orchestra gigs. So, it was a total no-brainer as to whether or not Brooke and I were going to see her perform. We followed up the church performance with lunch at Applebee’s. Also, since there was a Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt right next door (and 80 degree temps outside) we had this for desert…


Best frozen yogurt flavor ever! I even managed to be all Christmasey with the cup the yogurt was in and my spoon choice…


Although, you probably can’t see it, the little guy on the spoon is holding a candy cane. Pretty cool!

Once we were home, I had some cooking to do…meal prep for this week. Then, it was off to this place…


Yep, I was off to Universal Studios Hollywood to celebrate Grinchmas


I’ll be posting a little more on this fun part of my Sunday later this week. However, I just couldn’t resist sharing some of the photos of the sights and sounds of Grinchmas 2013 at Universal Studios Hollywood


I even got to meet one of Santa’s minions…


Because Universal Studios Hollywood is such a small theme park and with so much of the land under construction of their Wizarding World of Harry Potter (opening in 2015), I wasn’t at Universal Studios very long. Plus, my wife and I wanted to get out and see some more Christmas lights. So, we hit up a couple of our favorite spots for seeing Christmas lights…


The Balian House first. I love this house because they highlight both the Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus…


And of course, Santa Clause..


From the Balian House, we went off to Hastings Ranch.


This area has so many houses that decorate and light up for the holidays that you could spend hours just circling around. They even have different symbols for each street to help you in keeping track of where you’ve been. If you’re ever in the Pasadena area for Christmastime, you should look up Hastings Ranch and check out the many amazing Christmas displays.


As you can see, with all I attempted to do, I simply didn’t have the time for the scheduled gym workout on Sunday. It came down to going to Universal Studios or going to the gym and I chose the first one. As I said, I’m still a work in progress. It was great to get out and see Christmas lights with my wife. We’ve been going to certain places like Hastings Ranch and the Balian House since our first year of dating. So, it’s a tradition that I am not ready to give up on just yet. This was still a fantastic bounce back week for me. Not only did I make 3 training runs of 6, 6, and 7 miles, but they were runs I finished with good overall times.

With week 15 in the books, I come to the week I’ve been dreading ever since I first came up with this training plan for running the Dumbo Double Dare and Walt Disney World Marathon. This is my marathon dress rehearsal week. On Saturday, I’ll be going for 26 miles in the OC…starting and finishing at the Disneyland Resort. Then, on Sunday, I’ll be going to Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure with my wife and two sister in-laws. If I’m not completely worn out by the end of Sunday, you’ll get the highlights of that weekend next Monday. Here’s hoping that this week is, in the immortal words of Barney Stinson, LEGEN….wait for it and I hope you’re not lactose intolerant because the second half of that word is…DARY…LEGENDARY.

2 thoughts on “Bouncing Back in Week 15 of WDW Marathon Training

  1. So many great things about this post…your tree (ours is similar with Disney ornaments), your tree topper is adorable, running with Christmas music, Saving Mr. Banks premier, Menchie’s Frozen yogurt…the list goes on and on! Glad you had such a great week!! :0)

    1. Glad you enjoyed this post! It was a fun and crazy week. The craziness and fun continues this week. I hope you and your family are having just as much fun!

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