Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas

No candy canes or silver lanes aglow, though. Well sort of.

Friday night was the annual CA Cruiser Christmas Light Run around Eastlake in Yorba Linda. After having rained off and on most of the day, we were treated to a relatively warm and dry little jaunt through this community in Yorba Linda that really decorates to the hilt. Almost the entire neighborhood participates with each little cul-de-sac having its own motif. After the run we had a soup and sandwich dinner at one of the member's homes nearby.

Saturday morning I make the trek down to Santa Monica in a drizzle to run the Santa Monica-Venice Christmas Run. There was both a 10K and a 5K. The races were timed so that you could actually run the both if you wanted too. I was there in time for the 10K, but my plan called for the 5K. It rained off and on all morning. I got wet during my 2 mile warm up run. It was dry when we lined up but before the gun went off it started raining again and then stopped again before we finished.

I'd worn two shirts mostly to combat the chill from getting wet. I had intended on removing the long sleeve before the race, but since it was raining I kept it on. During the race I was really too warm for it but I didn't want to take the time to stop and take it off. My intent was to give this race all I could, but I hadn't raced a 5K since June 2007. My PR, set back in early 2006 was sub 22, I didn't think I stood a chance of approaching that.

I lined up back a ways and spent the first few minutes passing others before finding my spot. I had no way to gauge my progress until we hit the 2 mile mark. I got there right at 15:00. I was pretty happy with that. I did the mental math and figured I should be able to go under 23:00 if I didn't lose my pace. I crossed the line with the clock at 23:05 or so, but thanks to chip timing my official time was 22:53.1. Considering I haven't done any kind of speed work since before my September marathon I was pretty pleased with my performance.

Later that day, Lisa and I joined a group from the Cruisers at the Christmas Concert put on by the choirs, orchestra and hand bell choir at Concordia University. One of the highlights of that performance was a rendition of Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Wizards in Winter on the hand bells. The video below isn't the Concordia choir but it gives you an idea of the complexity of the song and the coolness of the hand bells.

Sunday morning the skies were clear after raining most of the day on Saturday. I was able to enjoy a muddy version of my Bonelli Sunday Loop before heading the the gym for that leg work out, the church and then a trip to Temecula.

I ended the week with 30 miles. Two less than the planned called for because I cut the hill run on Thursday short by a mile and I missed another mile today because the treadmill was malfunctioning at the gym. I warmed up on the elliptical instead. 93.75% on the Half Marathon PR Plan is a good start, but a PR performance is going to take at least 100%. On to Week 2 of the plan.


Wes said...

Nice job, Mr. McSpeedy :-)

Joe said...

Nice run, Darrell!! Very cool to hold your 7:30s so well!! Nice race.

Who said "It never rains in California" anyway???

Cool bell choir...complex production, that.