Christmas 2014 has come and gone. Soon, it will be 2015. I’ll be spending the rest of 2014 looking back. It starts today with a last weekly look at my training.
Monday, I took my usual rest day for my Christmas presents shopping. I know, why did I wait until the week of Christmas to do my shopping? That’s all the time I had. If you’ve been following this blog during December, you’ve probably seen just how busy the weekends have been. It’s been a busy Christmas season for Brooke and I. In the craziness of it all, there was not any other time for Christmas shopping. Here is a look at the Americana in Glendale. It was very festive!
At the Glendale Galleria, they had Shrek, Fiona, and Donkey for pictures while you waited to meet Santa! Very clever idea.
Tuesday morning I was wiped out from all the shopping. So, I failed to get out a run. At last the holiday season had taken its toll and cost me one workout.
Wednesday, Christmas Eve day, I made up for the missed Tuesday run by going my usual 3 mile loop around the apartment. As you can see, I tried to make a festive run by rocking the green and red! I even finished pretty fast for me. It was a little over 35 minutes! Merry Christmas to me! I could tell this was going to be a fantastic run right from the start. By the time I got to the end of 2 miles, it was pretty clear that I would come back under the 36 minute mark. The only question was how much under. I didn’t do my usual switch to 1 minute run/1 minute walk in the last mile either. However, I did run most of the last-minute to get the time down.
Christmas Eve was spent with my parents. They came down to Pasadena for some food, presents, and Christmas lights.
We stopped by the Balian House so they could see those lights for the first time.
Then, we went to Hastings Ranch to drive around. There are so many houses that decorate in this area that you really can’t see them all in one trip. So, Brooke and I were really happy to see some new houses. Look! Jack Skellington!
Here’s a further back view of that house. Pretty Cool! Don’t ya’ think?
Thursday was Christmas Day! I totally intended to run in the morning like last year. However, I didn’t. Brooke and I had our Christmas gift exchange and breakfast in the morning. Then, we watched a movie. I started to work on my Christmas at Disneyland blog post, but didn’t finish. He headed off to my in-laws house and were there for the rest of the day. It was a fun-filled Christmas Day! However, no run.
Friday was a rest day. It was also the day they started removing the Christmas decorations from the Walt Disney Studio Lot. This is always a pretty sad day. Next to no one was at work on this day. I was the lone worker in my department. So, it was very quiet. However, at the end of the day, the Christmas tree was still up. So, I stopped for a quick last photo of the Christmas tree on the lot. By Monday evening, I am pretty sure it will be gone.
Saturday, I headed off to Anaheim for a planned 17 mile run. However, after some GPS signal problems, I’ve finally figured out that I finished around 15.75 miles. In the first full week of 2015, I’ll post a more detailed, and picture filled, post series about the Star Wars Half Marathon Route. Most of the 9.8 miles in this map is of the non theme park part of the Star Wars Half Marathon Route. For those who want a little sneak peek, I’ll let you know that I loved this new course. It might just be the flattest runDisney race course. There are no overpasses to climb and no hills. As you can see in the map, that doesn’t mean there aren’t elevation changes. However, it didn’t feel like they were there. On my course from Saturday, I started about where it looked like the start line would be on Disneyland Drive headed towards Ball Road. There was a couple slight inclines as you make your way towards Ball Road. However, the Star Wars course will take a right turn into the back stage area of Disneyland before climbing over the 5 freeway like the Disneyland Half Marathon does. On Saturday, I did two overpasses to get where the Star Wars course will make its way back on the streets.
My new intervals of run 30 seconds/walk a minute and a half worked out perfectly for me until around the end of mile 8. It’s a total mental thing for me that I need to figure out. However, I pushed through and was fine after I crossed the end of the 8th mile. I must say that this course has a few boring spots. However, for the most part it will be a fun route to run.
Once I got to Katella, instead of turning left (like we will on race day), I turned right and headed towards Angel Stadium. As you can see in the map, it stops at 9.8 miles, before the underpass of the 5 freeway.
I used Map My Run to figure out how much distance went by before I realized my GPS was not working on my Nike+ GPS Sports Watch. This is where my run went downhill. As I made my way up Katella, I was feeling tired and it was rather chilly out. Then, I got to the underpass for the freeway. I picked the wrong side of the road to be on. On my side, there was dirt as it looked like they were working on the grounds of the underpass. I was worried that running through this really uneven ground would cause an injury. So, I walked the entire underpass. Once on the other side, I started my intervals again. It was either the second or third run interval where I noticed the distance had not moved. Frustrated, I stopped and had to decided what to do next. Do I just go back to Disneyland and my car? Or do I pull out the Nike Plus App on my phone and finish out the rest of my planned route. I decided on the latter.
This is what my watch read when I stopped it. Since the time kept going, the information isn’t exactly accurate.
So, here is the information on the rest of my run. As I was going along, I had no idea how far I had gone exactly. It was a complete mental battle. For a good portion of these last 5 miles, I gave up on running. Since I didn’t know how far I had gone exactly or the exact timing, I really didn’t know how to process what I was doing. The only thing I ended up changing on my planned route was to not go around the Honda Center parking lot and into the Santa Ana River Trail. So, I might have made all 17 miles (or more) if I had.
As I approached the Honda Center, I saw this guy to my right. During the Disneyland Half Marathon, I remember a lot of people wondering what it was. So, I thought I’d check it out. It’s a train station for those that wanted to know.
From the train station, the road leads into the Angel Stadium Parking lot. So, I ran a little here. It was fun to approach Angel Stadium from a different route.
One thing that bummed me out was that the Angels Mickey Mouse was not out front.
See? Here he is when I did my practice run through the Avengers Half Marathon route. He wasn’t there on this day. By the time I got to the front of the stadium, I was really struggling with motivation to run any more. I didn’t know how far I needed to go to make 17 miles, no idea of exactly how long I had been going, and it just didn’t feel worth it. I stopped my run in the parking lot and got myself together. I was tired and things were not going well. However, I did have to get back to my car. So, I journeyed on.
Once I got on the other side of the 5 freeway, I was still feeling pretty tired. I didn’t like how long this was taking. Then, I remembered that I had packed away a few new things that I received in Runnerbox this month. So, I tried the InstaBOOST to see if it would give me the energy it claimed. You know what? It did! I got back to my run/walk intervals all the way back to the Disneyland Resort!
By the time I got to Olaf’s Frozen Ice Rink, it was time to call it a day.
The Nike Plus App said, I had finished 5.06 miles. I was pretty sure that I was around 16-17 miles. However, it wasn’t until I got home that I could piece it all together. 9.80 miles before the GPS Watch quit tracking + 0.69 miles that went untracked (according to Map My Run’s map) + 5.06 miles = 15.55 miles total. Even though I didn’t get all 17 miles, I’m not too worried about it. Technological failures are out of my hands.
Sunday turned into a chore day and a day off from workouts. I had planned a gym workout, but just wasn’t feelin’ it.
The holidays finally got to my workouts and I ended with 2 runs for the week. This isn’t something I want to continue, obviously. However, my mind is already in 2015 as I’ve been busy planning what I hope to see happen in the new year. For the rest of this week on the blog, there will be the looking back at 2014 posts and a looking at 2015 post. We’ll venture back to the Virtual Disney theme park trips starting off at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. I hope you all have a wonderful end to 2014 and best wishes for 2015.