When you write a running blog, each day builds the narrative of your weekly training reports. Last week, after getting back on track with 4 workouts, I decided that I needed to up my game a little and decided to swing for the fences this week and complete 5 days of working out. This past week was the first one where I didn’t have mid-week commitments like choir practices or small group Bible studies. So, it seemed like a good idea. As the week went along, I wondered why I made this the week to shoot for 5. After all, it was also the second week of back to back “long” runs in preparation for the Dumbo Double Dare. So, how did I do with such a big goal?
The good news? I hit ALL 5 workouts!
My Saturday training run was completed on the treadmill. So, it doesn’t show up in the Nike Plus account.
Not only 5 workouts, but Saturday was sort of a double. I added 2 miles on the treadmill for the Dumbo Double Dare training plan in addition to the regular gym workouts! With hitting all 5 workouts, why is this post entitled “So close?” Well, Sunday’s training run ended short. Let’s go back and review the week.
After taking the usual Monday rest day, I was back at the Rose Bowl for 3 miles on Tuesday. After running at the Rose Bowl for the first time in the mid-week during week 9, I decided that I enjoyed it so much I had to go back!
My finish time was slower than I would have liked. Part of the problem was overcrowding along the Rose Bowl loop. Honestly, this was the most crowded I’ve ever seen the Rose Bowl loop. There were at least three of my run intervals cut short because I simply could not get around the walkers. It really sucked to see a line of 4 or 5 people walking side by side. Sometimes, I faced just 2 or 3 across. In those situations, I also saw 2 or 3 across coming the opposite way and cyclists on the other side or cars. So, I had no choice but to come to a walk early. Urgh! To top it off, I had some lower back pain towards the end as well to slow me up. The good news? I finished faster than I did the previous Tuesday!
I can’t remember if this was Tuesday or Wednesday. I think it was Wednesday that we got a free lunch at work thanks to Bob Iger’s 40th Anniversary with the Walt Disney Company! Thanks Bob for the free lunch!
Also, on Wednesday, I headed off to the gym for a rare mid-week gym workout. By the end, I was thrilled with the outcome. It’s been a while since I’ve done a mid-week gym workout and aimed at 3 consecutive days of workouts. So, I had no idea what to expect from myself. I was better on the elliptical than the previous Sunday. Also, I’ve been trying to increase the weight for the assisted chin up/dips machine. Like the previous gym workout, I had to stop 3 reps from completion on the chin ups. Since it was the same result as the previous workout, I don’t see this negatively, but as part of doing what I needed to do for progress. Everything else worked fine!
Thursday called for 3 more miles. Due to this being the day before the 4th of July, I opted against a return to the Rose Bowl and ran my 3 mile route around where I live. I know that the time was slower than Tuesday. However, I was not bummed out by this result at all. Why? Because I think almost every traffic light I came to was red when I arrived. So, there were several minutes where I was stopped, unable to move forward. I was also happy because I finished pain-free! Given that this 3 mile training run also closed out my first 3 consecutive workout days for the first time in a while, I was very pleased with the result.
After finishing off my 3rd workout for the week, I relaxed in the evening with watching Independence Day. I love this movie! It seemed like a good way to get into the spirit of the 4th of July!
Friday was Independence Day in the United States. It was also a rest day and I took full advantage of having the day off from work and from training. The day started off with watching How to Train Your Dragon 2 with my sister in-laws. If you liked the original How to Train Your Dragon, you will absolutely love its sequel. Fun times at the movies!
After watching How to Train Your Dragon 2 in the theatres, I took on a more patriotic movie at home in the afternoon. What is more American than watching the original Captain America?
After Captain America was over, it was time to head off to the StubHub Center for a match between the Los Angeles Galaxy and the Portland Timbers with my wife and her family.
One of my sister in law’s is a huge fan of the LA Galaxy and used to have season tickets for a few years. So, on her suggestion, we got general admission tickets which allowed us to sit back behind the goal. We were pretty close to the action. With the United States advancing to the round of 16 in the World Cup (before losing to Belgium), I think a lot of people were pretty excited about soccer (or for those of you reading this from outside of the United States..futbol). It was an exciting game that ended in a 2-2 draw.
After the game, there was a great fireworks show. It was much better than I had expected and finished off the 4th of July with a bang…literally!
Finishing with Stars and Stripes Forever, this show did not disappoint.
On Saturday, I had planned on doing a 2 mile run outside and then head off to the gym. However, since we got home so late from the Galaxy game, I was not able to get up in time. It’s been crazy hot out here in Los Angeles. So, the outdoor run got nixed and I took it to the gym instead.
It was a really good 2 miles for me! When I’m on the treadmill for a training run, I usually walk a quarter-mile to warm up, stop the treadmill, and start up again with a run interval to start. So, even though I’ve recorded 2 miles, I actually did 2.25 miles on the treadmill. Now, I know that the Jeff Galloway training program says to walk the first of the back to back training days. However, I choose to do the normal run/walk/run training. Why? I’ll be running the Disneyland 10K with my wife. She is a little slower than me. However, when we did the Neverland 5K back in 2013, she totally surprised me with how much she ran. I figure that if I train like I’m going to run the Disneyland 10K by myself, I will be well prepared for whatever my wife feels like doing on the 10K.
In addition to the 2 miles on the treadmill, I completed a full gym workout (for me). It was my strongest gym workout that I can remember! The assisted chin ups that I’d been struggling with, I finished as I wanted to without any stops! Progress! It all ended with 27 minutes on the elliptical machine. The machine gave me about 10 fewer calories burned than Wednesday. Considering that Wednesday’s time on the elliptical machine was at the start of my workout and not at the end, like I did on Saturday, I’ll take it!
After the workout, it was time to head off to the Big A for Angels baseball! They were playing the Houston Astros on Saturday.
I wanted to go to this game because they were giving away patriotic Angels hats. What I don’t have pictured is the American flag on the side.
We ended up sitting 5 rows up right by the foul pole in right field.
The view to home plate wasn’t the best from this location.
We were close to the right fielder, though! Pictured above is Cole Calhoun and a little further off, my favorite Angel, Mike Trout!
The game didn’t start off too well for our Halos as Houston jumped out to a 5-1 lead on a grand slam in the third inning.
In the seventh inning, the Rally Monkey came out and the Angels had a big inning. They scored 8 runs to take the lead for good!
In the seventh inning there were 3 home runs!
The Angels won 11-5! Then, it was time for my second firework show of the weekend!
It was another stellar fireworks show! The Angels normally have fireworks with their Saturday games. So, if I were a season ticket holder (or went to both the 4th and 5th of July games), I would have been treated to fireworks on two nights in a row at the Big A. Of course, I got two fireworks shows a different way. But, still fun!
So, this week was turning into one legendary week for me…that is until Sunday. As I mentioned at the beginning of this blog post, when you’re a run blogger, you develop this narrative for your week as it goes along. I had planned on wearing the Dumbo Double Dare shirt on Sunday to mark the end of a legendary week of training for the 2014 Dumbo Double Dare! I had 9.5 miles on the calendar and was out avenge my failure of a run last year on this week. Last year, I decided to go to the Rose Bowl for the very first time. The route I chose was not the best. I ended up getting sun screen in my eyes during the start of the second mile and couldn’t clean it out until the 4th when I got to the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center. So, I had nearly 2 miles of running blind. Plus, the path I chose had portions with no sidewalk. It was a complete and total disaster. So, how did this year go? More of the same. The difference was that I knew how to get to the Rose Bowl this time. So, I avoided that problem. I also learned on that run not to apply sunscreen to my forehead when wearing a hat. So, no sunscreen in the eyes. Instead, I just had a bad day of training. When I started off the day, it was already over 70 degrees outside. I could feel the heat and worried that it would do me in. Right from the first few run intervals, I could feel the heaviness of my legs and the tiredness of over scheduling my weekend. I took more walk breaks than usual in hopes that I would find my legs eventually. I tried to let the music in my ears distract me from the tiredness my body felt. Nothing worked.
Here’s the deal…when I do this route, I head up California Blvd. and take it to Orange Grove Blvd. This path pretty much goes uphill for almost the entire first 2 miles. Then, it’s largely downhill or flat to the end of mile 3. That’s followed by some rolling hills to mile 4.5. Downhill from mile 4.5 – 6. That’s when you leave the Rose Bowl and make your way back to Orange Grove Blvd. There’s a good-sized climb to get back up to Orange Grove and even more climbing to get to Colorado Blvd. That gets you to about 6.5 miles. Then, the rest of my route is largely downhill (with one or two climbs). I say all of this because it’s a much more difficult route than the course for the Disneyland Half Marathon.
By 1.5 miles, I was ready to call it a day. I was tired and completely out of rhythm. However, I told myself that I’d have to finish 3 miles if I went back home anyways. So, why not see if I could go further. By the time I descended into the Rose Bowl loop, I started feeling a little better. Running downhill does that. However, by the end of mile 3, I could feel the heat. My body was not liking me too much for continuing on. I stopped to check the heat and learned that it was 75 degrees in Pasadena at that time. Yikes! I largely walked around the Rose Bowl because I was worried about how I felt. My legs were not coming back and I didn’t want to find myself with any heat related problems. The second half of the Rose Bowl loop is always easier for me than the first half. So, I did find some running legs to finish it off. Around the end of the Rose Bowl loop, I ran into one of my fellow running bloggers, Juliana. She just re-tooled her blog and now writes 4 Well Rules. If you haven’t checked out her blog, you should stop by her new blog. After all, she’s a fellow runDisney enthusiast and a marathoner! Juliana, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry I wasn’t more talkative when we saw each other. I was just so ready to be finished with this run, not liking the heat, and really tired. If you see me again, please say hello again. It was good to see you!
Facing the long hill up to Orange Grove made me wish I had a car so I could just drive up and get home. By the time I got this point, I just wanted it all to be over. I tried running as much as I could. Especially when I got to the downhill portions on Colorado Blvd and on the street I live on. However, the heat was too unbearable and I was too tired to care. So, when I got to my apartment building (even though I still had a little more than a mile to go), I stopped. I finished with 8.3 miles of the 9.5 required. My time was horrible because of all the walking. As I finished off this run, I thought of the above clip…why do we fall? So we can learn how to pick ourselves back up. Exactly! So, what did I learn this week?
5 workouts in one week is completely doable
Watch my scheduling. I put too much into the weekend and paid the price on Sunday.
I need to learn a little more about running in hot temperatures.
Someone needs to invent a portable air conditioning device that will be small enough and light enough for runners to use.
This week was oh so close to legendary. I’d give it a solid 8 out of 10. In spite of a bad run…
Onto week 11! As I move on, I’m very happy about finishing all 5 workouts in week 10! I’m also happy about some of the results. Another week means another opportunity for greatness or failure. 5 more workouts for week 11! That’s the goal. No more missed workouts! That’s the mantra. Let’s go get it!