Week 11 of Dumbo Double Dare Training has not only been a good one for me, but for my Halo’s as well. The Angels head into All Star Week with the second best record in the entire Major Leagues! Go Angels!
For the third consecutive week, I hit 4 workouts (or more) for the week!
As you can see, three of those were training runs. I’m not going to lie. I’m running slower than I’d like to be running at this point. However, at least I’m starting to find some consistency. It is my belief that such consistency will yield better results going forward. At least, they will if the consistency continues. Let’s look at this week. Shall we?
As per usual, Monday was a rest day for me. On Tuesday, I headed back out to the Rose Bowl for some summer extra daylight running. The Rose Bowl loop has become my favorite spot to run during the week! I also love running here in the weekends as well. However, I’ve decided to take full advantage of the extra daylight hours we have in the summer by running here in my mid-week runs. What’s great about running at the Rose Bowl is that there are no traffic lights to slow me down.
Unfortunately, there’s still me to slow me down. 38 plus minutes to finish 3 miles just won’t do. However, on this day, I was pretty tired and my legs felt like lead bricks. All the training I did, plus other fun activities over the 4th of July weekend left their mark. To be honest, by Monday morning, I was so tired and worn out that I should have called out sick. The problem is that I couldn’t. After all, it’s the policy of my employer that you have to show up the work day after a holiday or risk loosing being paid for the holiday. There are ways around this. The sad fact is that you need a doctor’s note for a day off after a holiday. Since I wasn’t sick enough on Monday to warrant a visit to the doctor’s office, I dragged myself into the office and through the day. I did so again on Tuesday and through this run. To top things off, the temps were in the mid 80’s when I started running. So, it was just a day where you have to grind it out.
Here’s where the flexibility part kicks in. I was supposed to hit the gym on Wednesday according to my schedule. However, by the time I left work on Wednesday, I was fried and needed the day off. Plus, after gutting it out with horrible results on Tuesday, I had low motivation to do more of the same on Wednesday. I was so exhausted by the time I got home Wednesday night that I didn’t feel well either. So, I ended up taking Thursday off from work. During Thursday, I decided that I should take that day off from running as well. So, I was missing my gym workout on Wednesday and my 3 miles of running on Thursday. What to do?
I ended up deciding to run on Friday instead of Thursday. This turned into a very good decision. As you can see by the results. I improved my time at the Rose Bowl by almost 2 full minutes! Now, I would like to be faster still. However, seeing a finish time in the 36 minute range is a welcome relief for me. On Friday, I switched things up a bit as well. I ran the opposite direction around the Rose Bowl and think I’ll do so again. Also, I decided to leave my playlist on shuffle instead of having it just play everything in the order I’ve selected. I LOVED how it turned out!
Since I didn’t want to run both Friday evening AND Saturday morning, I switched up things here as well. I went to LA Fitness on Saturday morning for a workout. It was a hard workout but a good one as I continued to see improvement with the cross training I’m doing. I can see myself getting stronger with each workout. My new routine of changing up the weights on the assisted pull-ups/dips machine is working out really good! For the second time in a row, I finished exactly as planned without having to interrupt any of the sets!
Also, on Saturday, while doing our chores, Brooke and I discovered a new sandwich place to eat. It’s called Which Wich…as in which sandwich.
It’s kind of cool. Each of the above numbers has a bag on it for a particular sandwich. On the bag are the items which you can include or exclude from your sandwich. Simply, check off what you want and they customize the sandwich for you. I know that most sandwich shops do the same. I liked the idea of how they do it here. Also, the entire vibe of the restaurant is fun.
With Saturday’s run turning into a gym workout, it meant that Sunday’s gym workout turned into a run. See? Flexibility. With 4 miles on the calendar, I went to a 4 mile route around my apartment that I love running. With the high temps of 99 degrees predicted in Pasadena, I was up early and out the door shortly before 7am to try to avoid as much of the heat as possible.
In the first mile, I got to pass by Pasadena City Hall. This isn’t the best picture. However, I was on a training run and there was no time to stop for the perfect picture. The first mile of this route goes largely uphill. It’s a gradual ascent that includes some areas of flat ground. However, the ascent is certainly felt. Since I’ve done this route a bunch of times, I know enough to tell myself to just grind it out in the first mile. Things will get better.
And better comes right at the start of mile 2. There’s a nice park with a band shell to my left. The descent is a little on the steep side. Therefore, I have not yet run this route in the opposite direction. I much prefer running down this hill at the start of mile 2, than up it at the end of mile 3.
Not too far past the bottom of the hill, I turn into Old Town Pasadena.
Look at how empty the streets and sidewalks are. This is the corner of Fair Oaks and Colorado Blvd. During business hours, this section of town is much busier than this. One of the joys of running this route are getting to run through Old Town Pasadena. I have run this route at night before and it can be a little painful to weave in and out of all the people walking around. However, when I do run this route at such times, it gives me plenty of practice for the beginning of the Disney races! By the way, note the red light. I was stopped at way too many of these things to get an overall good finish time.
This is my favorite part of the 4 mile loop! I’ve used this park for my magic miles. It’s just over half a mile around the park and no traffic lights! On one side of the park is the Castle Green (a former hotel that’s been used in tons of movies and television shows). Next to the Castle Green (and visible while I’m running) is Castle Catering. That’s where my wife and I had our wedding reception. Passing by brings back good vibes!
Towards the end of mile 3 is this intersection. The car pictured is heading on to the 110 freeway. This is where that freeway starts and finishes. The traffic light here has stopped me for as long at 2 1/2 minutes before. So, when I came to it on Sunday, I stopped my watch. After all, my time was already pretty bad from the many other traffic lights. I didn’t need another 2 minutes or more added to my time while I waited for my turn to cross Route 66.
The fourth mile was rough for me as the temps were warming up and tiredness started setting in.
I pushed through, however, and finished all 4 miles! Again, this time reflects many minutes waiting at corners for the traffic light to turn green. I’m not super happy with the time. Two weeks ago, I ran 4 miles at the Rose Bowl and finished in 48 minutes 57 seconds. So, I’m not sure how fast I would have finished if traffic lights were not an issue on this past Sunday. Once I got into my third mile, I had resigned myself to not getting a good finish time because I was having to stop too often. That’s the bummer of running in places where traffic lights can stop you. I’ve been torn on whether or not to stop my watch at each and every red light or to just let the watch continue. The only place I feel comfortable stopping it is at the intersection I talked about above. The reason I’ll stop it there is because it’s pretty consistently making me wait more than a minute. Lesson learned from this week? Be flexible.
In spite of the slow finish times, I am happy to have completed 4 workouts in three consecutive weeks! It’s been a while since I could say that. Fast or slow, it’s good to find consistency again. Funny thing about consistency, though. It can easily be lost. I set a goal for myself of making it 4 weeks in a row to make at least 4 workouts. If I did, I would reward myself with 10 tracks off iTunes. So, here’s hoping that this will be the week where I earn those tracks! Week 12, I’m comin’ at ya!