The Force Was Strong with this Week in Workouts


In case you were not on planet earth this week, a little film called Star Wars: The Force Awakens opened in theaters. Even with all the excitement, I still had workouts to complete in preparation for the Star Wars Rebel Challenge. My finish times weren’t light speed worthy. However, Each run was what it needed to be. So, let’s look back…


I was out for the count on Tuesday with a really bad sinus situation. So, I pushed the run to Wednesday instead. Since I was out sick on Tuesday, I decided to pull back on Wednesday. I’d run 30 seconds, walk 60 seconds for mile 1 and 3. Then, I’d run 30 seconds, walk 90 seconds for mile 2. I knew going into the run not to expect a super speedy time. Instead, I wanted to be in control of the intervals and focus this week on recovery. Mile 1 was what I would have expected…11:31. Last week, I was running around 10:40 – 10:45. So, the extra walking slowed me a little bit. I was totally okay with that. After all, this was my first run with Christmas music of the season. Love all the Christmas lights! Mile 2 was a minute slower than mile 1 with the longer walk breaks. Again, exactly what I expected.


Mile 3, I switched back to the 60 second walk breaks. The result? My fastest mile of the night! My final finish time was 35:23. I was happy to finish under 36 minutes with how I felt.


Thursday morning, Storm Troopers had invaded the Studio! Okay. It was just these two. But, how fun was that to see them at work?


I’m guessing that there was a screening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on the Lot Thursday. They were there for that. However, at my lunch break, I got a quick pic with them!


As if that wasn’t fun enough, when I returned home, I found this in my mail box! I finally got my extra medal for running two Rock n Roll Half Marathons this year!


Thursday night, I ran with a Storm Trooper (on my shirt). While many friends of mine got to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens, I ran. This time, I decided to run 30 seconds, walk 60 seconds for all three miles. No switching anything this time around. This way, I get to push a little harder, but still think I am recovering. Mile 1 was finished 2 minutes faster than Wednesday! Not huge. However, I was keeping the same intervals. The real intriguing part would be mile 2. Even though the change in elevation is an incline, it took me 11:32 to finish! That’s only 4 seconds slower than mile 1. You’ve got to love consistency! Mile 3 would be my fastest mile again at 10:54 for a final finish time of 35:55. Yep. Back under 34 minutes. I loved that and felt amazing afterwards!


I arrived at work to find the Storm Troopers were back. Here is where I enter the parking structure I park in. These guys were there to greet us on the opening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens!


It’s like Disney had added security to the lot for this momentous day! Another fun start to the day!


One of the perks of being a Disney employee is that we get to see free screening of our movies. With Star Wars being such a big thing, they had supersized our fee screenings. On Friday, there was a showing at 8am, 11am, and 2pm at the Studio Theater. Then, they had the three AMC Theaters in Burbank rented for a 9am screening in all of their theaters. They repeated that on Sunday. Normally, they either rent out the Burbank AMC 16 on the Saturday after a film’s opening. Or, they send out an email with screenings on the Lot for Saturday and Sunday of a film’s opening weekend. Unfortunately for me, none of the times worked out for me to see the film for free. We had our Corporate Legal Intellectual Property group Christmas lunch from Noon to 3pm. It was a fabulous get together. However, it meant I couldn’t see the 11am or 2pm screenings on the Lot.


Saturday began with 6 miles around the Rose Bowl. I decided, in keeping with the recovery theme of the week, I decided to run the 6 miles using my half marathon intervals of run 30 seconds, walk 90 seconds the whole way. I wanted to see what my time would be on the Rose Bowl Loop if I held to these intervals the entire way. Two weeks ago, I ran the same route with a run 30, walk 90 for miles 1 and 4. Then, run 30, walk 60 for miles 2, 3, 5, and 6. So, I’d have something to compare with outing with.

Splits 120615

Above are the splits from 12/06/2015.

Splits 121915

Here are my spits from Saturday. It’s interesting to compare apples with apples. You know what I mean. Overall, I had a much better feeling run on this Saturday. I had a better first mile than on 12/06/2015. However, as you would expect with different intervals, it is pretty much slower after that. Although, mile 4 was faster on this week from the run two weeks ago (and they were using the same intervals).

As I ran along, it was a little disappointing to see that every mile pretty much went slower than the mile before it. Mile 1 was my fastest mile. As I would hear the average pace at the end of each mile, it was a little discouraging However, I reminded myself that this was a test and it was important to put in some slower paced runs to recover. So, I didn’t switch to a 60 second walk break from the 90 second walk breaks I was taking. What I find most fascinating about comparing these two runs is that, with 30 seconds extra on the walk breaks for miles 2, 3, 5, and 6, I only lost 14 seconds. That’s just over 2 seconds per mile.


As I was running, I could see that there was a lot of preparation for the upcoming Rose Bowl Game. I loved the signs on the fences!


Also, there was preparations for the Rose Parade floats.


This was the only one I could actually see from the street.


In the afternoon, my parents came out and we had our Christmas celebration early. We did this because my brother in law, nieces and nephew flew out from Houston, Texas to spend Christmas week in California. So, we wouldn’t have time to spend with my parents on Christmas or just after.


On Sunday morning, I finally made it back to the gym! To be perfectly honest, I don’t get enough time at the gym to begin with. So, every missed workout puts me behind. The problem with that is I never make progress at the gym. I’m using the same weights on the machines and the same resistance levels on the elliptical machine. It may not seem like a big deal. However, making progress is fuel to keep me motivated. After the Star Wars races in January, I really need to be at the gym every single week. With the back to back long runs, it gets much more difficult to get these workouts in.

That said, the workout went well. I spent 27 minutes on the elliptical machine (15 minutes going forward, 12 minutes going backward). Then, I got on the assisted chin-ups and dips machine. The weight I’m using is a little challenging. Not an “oh, dear lord…what did I get myself into” kind of challenging. But, not a “hey this is easy” kind of thing either. I do three sets of chin ups with 15 reps and three sets of dips with 15 reps. Completed them all. Next up was the ab machines. Again, I could feel like I was pushing myself a little, but not too much. Then, the leg press machine. This was the one machine where I didn’t check my previous gym workout’s weights on. I may have unintentionally upped the weight. Oops. It worked out well enough. Just like the others, I pushed a little hard, but not too much. It felt great to do something different from running!


Then, it was time for finally see Star Wars: The Force Awakens with my nephew (who is in town from Houston).  It was hard all weekend to avoid spoilers. But, I did! I went in not knowing much of what to expect. Except to know it was getting favorable reviews. Since so many of my friends did an amazing job of not spoiling it, I will do the same. All I will say is…WOW! Just WOW! I absolutely loved this Star Wars. It’s way better than the pre-quells! J.J. Abrams did a brilliant job of mixing the old with the new. Seeing the old gang again and the Millennium Falcon again was like seeing an old friend that you haven’t seen in forever. I cannot recommend this film enough. Also, my nephew loved he film as well! If you haven’t seen it yet, you should! That’s all I will say because I don’t want to ruin anything for any readers who have yet to see this film. Going in not knowing the story is the best way you can see this film. I do hope I can see it again before it leaves theaters.

That’s all for this week. My nieces and nephew are in town with my brother in law for Christmas week. So, the blogging may be a little sparce this week. I hope to have a post up for Wednesday and on Christmas morning. If I don’t get a post up on those days, I will be back one week from today to wrap up the year and talk of goals for 2016. Can you believe 2015 is almost over? Crazy. Have a great week everyone! If I don’t get another post up…Merry Christmas!

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