Thursday, November 29, 2012

Beach Body Ultimate Reset

"The Beachbody Ultimate Reset™ is a program designed to help your inside get into amazing shape,just like your outside."- Carl Daikeler CEO Beachbody

I admit it--I don't always have the best diet.  I eat things I should not--chemicals, toxins, pesticides ect.  Yuck!  I have felt sluggish lately.  After seven half marathons this year and getting over a nasty cold, I needed a jump start back to health!  Some of my Beach Body coach friends suggested we do the reset together.  I was immediately intrigued--but could I do this?  

This is no ordinary cleanse!  You eat real food!  That is what got me to sign up.  The plan lasts 21 days. There are lots of supplements to take.  They are supposed to help remove harmful toxins from your body and give you the nutrients you need.  The plan starts you out slow.  The first week, you cut of red meat.  The second week you become a vegetarian.  The third week week you eat completely vegan.  Sounds scary, huh?  

I am ready!  I started my reset this morning.  Was it challenging?  Yes!  Will it be worth is?  Yes!

I will post after each week of the reset and let you know how I am doing.  Wish me luck!

A dream is a wish...


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The New Fantasyland

When I was in Walt Disney World for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon, I had the opportunity to preview the brand new but not open to the public yet Fantasyland.  I was not sure what to expect.  There has been so much hype, could Disney live up to it all?

My family got to the roped off section that leads to the new Fantasyland and we were all given wristbands that gave us access to the rides and attractions.  Our first stop was Story Time with Belle.  This attraction is so innovative!  You wait in a line that leads you through Belle's yard, then through the cottage, then into Maurice's workshop.  This is when the show starts!  I don't want to ruin all the surprises for you, but it is a truly magical experience.  Members of the audience are invited to play parts of the story.  My son was asked to be the Beast.  The show was so well done.  Not a single detail was overlooked.  We loved the experience so much, that we did it three times.  After Story Time with Belle, we explored Belle's village.  We stopped in Gaston's Tavern for a famous Disney cinnamon roll.

After checking out the village, we went under the sea.  We rode the Voyage of the Little Mermaid.  The ride it's self was a lot of fun and very well done, but I had rode it before.  It's the same ride as in Disneyland's California Adventure park.  What was extraordinary about the east coast version of the ride the ride entry queue.  There were no people in the line for the ride, but we still chose to take our time and take in all the wonder that was the ride entry line.  The Imagineers really out did themselves on this one!  The way they take you from a beautiful seaside village to under the sea is simply amazing.  The intricate attention to detail is astounding. The ride vehicle is a clam shell.  The ride it classics Disney animatronics, but with a modern update.

After the ride, we again went under the sea, but this time for a visit Ariel herself at Ariel's Grotto.  The same attention to detail was observed at the grotto as it was the ride.  When it was our turn, we got to visit with Ariel--the mermaid.  My family has met Ariel plenty of times in many different locations, but she was always wearing her human legs.  It was so much fun to meet Ariel the mermaid.  The actress did an amazing job.  She stayed in character the whole time, flipping her fins and asking my kids how far their swim was to get to her.  Her costume was so beautiful and life like.  The experience as so much fun and so magical for my family.

After the princesses, we had a chance to check out the new Storybook Circus area.  This is where not one, but two Dumbo rides are.  Disney created a new and innovative ride queue concept with this attraction. Guests are given a pager, just like the one you get at a restaurant.  Families can play in the brand new, indoor circus play area until they are paged.  The line area for this ride is very short--you do your waiting in the interactive play area instead of a boring line.  What a great way to pass the wait time for your ride!  When it's your turn, you pager goes off and you head to the ride.  Also in this area is an arcade and the Barnstormer, a children's roller coaster.  As with all of the new Fantasyland, the attention to detail with the new Dumbo ride is amazing.  I could have spent all day just marveling at the details put into the designs.  

My family was so fortunate to be part of the new Fantasyland preview.  Disney really outdid itself on this one.  I had very high expectations for the new Fantasyland.  My expectations were met and surpassed for sure.  As Walt would say, they took a great idea and they "plused it"!  The new Fantasyland grand opening is December 5th, 2012.

A dream is a wish...


Sunday, November 25, 2012

runDisney Wine and Dine Half Marathon

On November 10, I ran in the runDisney Wine and Dine Half Marathon.  This was my first night race--it started at 10 PM.  Going into this race, I knew I had done everything wrong.  We walked the parks for four days before the race.  I worked for five hours at the SparkleSkirts booth the day before.  I had done a 5k 15 hours before the half with no rest in between.  All of this would spell disaster for a race....

I would not call the race a disaster by any means, but it was by far not one of my best--in performance or enjoyment.  After getting up at 5 am for a 7 am 5k, then walking around Epcot all day, by the time I got to ESPN Wide World of Sports at 9 PM, I was already tired.  My feet were already aching   Since all of my long runs had been twelve hours earlier, my stomach was all messed up from eating dinner.  I was not sure what to do about eating--should I eat?  Should I not eat?  If I did not eat, I would be starving a few miles in.  If I do eat, I might have tummy issues along the course.  I ate a bland dinner of baked chicken and mashed potatoes.  I think my tummy troubles were just nerves because once the race started I felt fine.

The hour wait to go to our corrals was fun.  I got to see lots of friends and they had a great DJ.  In true runDisney style, each corral got a world class send off with their own " Ready, Set, Go" and fireworks!  There we were, off to the Animal Kingdom.  I stayed with my friend Danielle for about the first half mile.  It was very crowded and hard to stay together.  By the time I got to mile three, the leader of the race was coming the other way at around mile seven.  He got a huge cheer.  A few minutes later, the lead women ran past.  She got an even bigger cheer!

Disney's Animal Kingdom was at around mile five.  This park was particularly interesting to me because it is almost never open after dark.  I have never been in the park when the sun was down.  I loved how they lit the park--they used huge cloth lights that looked like elephant tusks.  It was so beautiful!  I loved running in the park in the dark.  Everest looked even more creepy at night.

As runners entered and exited the Animal Kingdom park there were some floats from the Magic Kingdom Electric parade.  I love this parade, so seeing this was very fun.  The entertainment on this course was much different that the entertainment on the two other runDisney half marathons I have done.  This was a much more "adult" course, for lack of a better word.  There were far less characters photo ops, but more other types of entertainment. At several places on the course were puppeteers with huge, two story, light up puppets.  I saw Rafiki from the Lion King, Aladdin's Genie and Lumiere and Cogsworth from Beauty and the Beast.  The way they had the puppets move--so life like and amazing.  I loved it.

There was about a three mile run between the Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.  It was at this point that I really start to fall apart.  By this time, it was around midnight.  My feet were aching and my ankle really started to hurt.  Everything that I had done wrong this week keep going through my head--walking the parks for four days before, my terrible fall, working the SparkleSkirts booth, doing the 5k the same day, doing a race so late--I was really losing it.  Thankfully, I made it to Hollywood Studios.  We ran up Hollywood Boulevard to Katy Perry singing "Firework".  This song is very special to me.  I used to sing it to my daughter when she was in the hospital.  The song got me all teared up, but it also gave me a second wind!

I ran strong through Hollywood Studios.  I love running through the back stage areas of Disney parks.  This time, we ran around the building that houses the Rock'n Roller Coaster.  This building typically can not be seen by guests so it was really cool to see.  We exited the back stage area into the Osborne Lights display.  This display was started by one family in Arkansas.  They sent it to Disney years ago.  There are millions of moving lights on display--all synced to music.  The Osborne Lights is one of my favorite Disney holiday traditions.

After we left Hollywood Studios, we ran toward the Disney Boardwalk.  Besides the parks, this is one of my favorite areas of Disney World.  It resembles a middle twentieth century Mid Atlantic Boardwalk.  We ran past the Boardwalk Inn, the Yacht Club and the Beach Club.  Its so beautiful there.  These hotels are so magical to stay at.

The Disney Boardwalk the day before the race
After the Boardwalk, it was off to Epcot and the finish.  I was never so happy to see a finish line than I was at the Wine and Dine!  I was so tired and in pain.  The finish was just outside of Epcot, just as was the Princess finish.  I got my medal and some water.  I met back up with Danielle and we headed to the after party--Epcot was open until 4 am just for Wine and Dine runners!

My Princess the night of the race
The park was packed, but the rides were empty.  Runners were so busying wining and dining, that they did not clog up the ride lines.  After a few rides, we needed to find some food!  I don't eat right after I run, but about an hour or two later, I am starving.  I decided on some cheddar cheese soup from Canada and a lobster roll sandwich from America.  Sadly, the party ended and it was time to head back to my room.  I said good bye to Danielle and walked the long hallway back to my room at the Animal Kingdom Lodge.

A dream is a wish...


I'm Thankful for Running

This Thanksgiving, among any other things, I am thankful for running.

Mom's Thanksgiving hat, lol
Almost two years ago, I made a choice.  I decided to become a runner and I never looked back!  Running has changed my life in so many way--some expected, but most very unexpected.

When I decided to become a runner, my goal was to complete the Disney Princess Half Marathon.  I started this blog to hold myself accountable.  To do this, I knew I would have to get healthy.  The first time I did was to start moving more. I started running of course--well, mostly walking at first.  Since I do not enjoy running outside in the cold, I joined my gym so I could run/walk on the treadmill.  During all my running research, I read about cross training so I started doing Turbo Fire.  To get healthy, I also had to change my eating habits.  I made the change slowly--I started eating more fruits and veggies, drinking Shakeology and eating cleaner.  These changes have helped me to lose a lot of weight and get fit!  The benefits of running are all the effects I had expected.

What I'm most thankful for--my family
The unexpected outcomes of running are the things I am most thankful for.  First and foremost are the friends I have made.  My running friends are some of the most caring and supportive people I have ever met.  They are so excepting.  I can be myself around them and fell like it fit in.  Running has taken me places I have always wanted to go.  I went to San Diego, Myrtle Beach and San Francisco for half marathon this year.  These are places I have always wanted to go, but probably never would have without running.  These trips were with my Team in Training team mates.  My amazing TNT team is something I am very thankful for.  I have made life long friends, got excellent coaching and had the opportunity to travel.  Best of all, I raised over seven thousand dollars to fight cancer.  Also through running, I met Leigh, the owner of Mousekeplanner.  She hired me on as an Independent Agent, so now I get to share my love of all things Disney with other and help them plan wonderful trips every day.  I would never had met Leigh or had this opportunity if I had not started running.   Along the same line, I have also become a Beach Body Coach.  As a coach, I encourage other to reach their goals.  This helps to keep me on track too, and keeps me positive.

Happy Thanksgiving!
I have so many things to be thankful for--my wonderful family and friends, my house, our health...Here are some of the reason I am thankful for running.  Why are you thankful for running?

A dream is a wish...


Thursday, November 22, 2012

runDisney Jingle Jungle 5k

Our first ever family running event was the runDisney Jingle Jungle 5k on November 10. 2012.  We spent the night at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge, so we were right near the Animal Kingdom park for race morning.  As I am a seasoned runner and used to the very early morning, my family is not.  The kids got up ok, but my husband was not so cheerful.  From the balcony of our room we ate breakfast while we watched the animals.  We could hear the music and the DJ at the race.

The trip to the race was very quick.  As we got closer, the music got louder and the kids got more and more excited.  I know its a race day no-no, but we all wore our race shirts.  It was fun for the family to all be dressed alike.  I figured that since it was an untimed family run, it would be ok just this once. Once we parked, we met up with some of the runDisney friends and got in line for a photo with Santa Mickey.

This was the first runDisney 5k that I have been part of that actually had corral placements.  Since we had my daughter in her stroller, the whole family started back with the stroller division.  We all stayed together until we crossed the start line, than my son, Nathan, and I ran ahead.  The first mile was through the Animal Kingdom parking lot.  We had to do a lot of weaving to get around walkers and slow runners.  Around the time we got into the park, we found our pace.  We ran past the Tree of Life and toward Africa.  We then turned into a "backstage" area.  This looked to be parts of where they house the Savanna animals.  One of my favorite parks of runDisney races is getting to see the back stage areas--they fascinate me!

By around mile two Nate and I caught up with some of my runDisney friends. They are usually much faster than me so I never get to see them during a race--just before and after.  With stopping for pictures, I finally had a chance to catch up to them.  We ran the rest of the race together.  There were a few picture stops along the way.  That made keeping up with them easier.  We crossed the finish line together with a big leap!

As much fun as it was to run with my friends, it was more special to finish with my son.  I could not wait to see Mike and Andrea finish too.  I could not wait to hear how much they liked the race and see them get their medals.  The kids loved the race!  They were so proud of their medals.  Mike did not love it so much.  I don't think he got the running bug, but I am very proud of him for doing it.  This was a great event, and in true runDisney style there was lots of characters on the course.  This event will always be special to me because it was the first race I got to do with my whole family.

A dream is a wish...


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

"I'm Still Sick..."

My son when he was three
"I'm still sick" were the words said in the most pitiful voice by my then three year old son.  He was miserably sick for about a week six years ago.  Now "I'm still sick" is a little inside joke my husband and I say to each other when one of us is not feeling well.  It lightens the mood a bit and gives us both a little chuckle.  

Nonetheless, that is how I feel after a week of being sick.  I have a terrible chest cold.  My lungs are full of fluid and I feel like I have been hit by a truck.  Now, I am not here to complain.  I just wanted to let my friends know that I am ok after not blogging for two weeks.  We spent a wonderful week in Disney World, including running Mickey's Jingle Jungle 5k and the runDisney Wine and Dine Half Marathon.  I promise to tell you all about it very soon--as soon as I feel like I can do the events justice, as soon as the medicine fog I am in has passed.  

Medals the kids will be earning tomorrow!
There will be no Turkey Trot for me tomorrow.  After lots of back and forth, and lots of chatting with my running friends, I have learned something.  I have asked almost all the runners I know about running when they are sick.  I even asked a Team in Training coach.  Everyone has told me the same thing:  If your illness is in your head, go ahead and still run.  If its below your head--take a break and get better before lacing up.  I take this as meaning if you have a runny nose or sinus congestion, its ok to run.  If you have stomach problems or chest issues--its time to take a break.  While I am not one to take a sick day for any reason, I have decided to listen to all the advice I have gotten and take a running break.  Hopefully I will be back up and running very soon!

Now, on to a new question--how do you keep your running endurance when you are sidelined for a while?

Happy Thanksgiving!

A dream is a wish...


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Runner Packing List

As I set here watching the election results rolling in, I keep rolling through my packing list in my head over and over again.  My family is leaving dark and early in the morning for Disney World--part family vacation/part running trip for me.  I will be doing the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon on Saturday night.  My entire family will be doing Mickey's Jingle Jungle 5k Saturday morning.  It will be my husband's and kids' first race!

Packing for a race weekend always makes me nervous!  I keep thinking I will forget something.  Here is a really great race day checklist I have it printed out and use it every time I get ready for a race.

I have quite a schedule planned for our trip to WDW.  We will attend a Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.  I will also get to attend a Fantasyland preview.  My family will check out the closing weekend of the Epcot Food and Wine Festival and catch the opening night of the Osborne Family light show.  I can't wait to see the improvements to the Safari at the Animal Kingdom.

Check out my Facebook page for update!

A dream is a wish...


Sunday, November 4, 2012

I Took a Nasty Fall...

My Team in Training team does not meet in November or December because we do not do any winter events.  We starting meeting again in January when training for spring events starts.  My friend and teammate, Wendy, and I met up Saturday morning at our usually team meeting spot for a long run on the trail.  I have the Disney Wine and Dine Half next weekend, so I need to get one last long run in.  I was so thankful to Wendy for meeting me.

Our run started out like usual, except we could see some storm damage to our trail from hurricane Sandy.  It was nothing much, but we could see how parts of the trail were previously flood and the trail was now leaf covered.  We were about one mile into the run when all the sudden I was on the ground!  It felt surreal at first.  Wendy and I were just running along, chatting about an upcoming team event and--bang!  I was laying face down on the ground.  I slipped on a black walnut and went down fast.

That goes for running too!
Boy did that hurt!  I twisted my ankle, busted up my knee, scratch both hands and landed really, really hard on my right elbow/shoulder.  It really knocked the wind out of me.  I sat on the ground for a minute, then Wendy talked me into trying to walk.  I stood up and stretched a bit.  I felt ok enough to walk, so we went on our way.  We walked about half a mile, than run the rest of our planned route.

The remainder of our ran was not easy, but I am really glad I finished the planned miles.  It may have helped to keep me loosened up.  I am so thankful that I was not out there alone.  Had I been, I am sure I would have lost it, started to cry and limped back to my car.  Had I been hurt worse, I am so glad I had a buddy there to help me out.

I am still pretty sore today.  My hands and knee are really scraped up and my elbow/shoulder hurts worse today than it did yesterday.  But I am tough!  I will be ok.  My biggest concern was being ok for my Disney World trip in a few days and the Wine and Dine Half Marathon.  I think I will heal just fine.

Have you ever hurt yourself during a run?

A dream is a wish...


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Virtual Turkey Trot to Benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

I have been training with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training.  I will run the Nike Half Marathon in DC on April 28th, 2013.  I will be running for a reason much more important than the personal challenge of completing a Half Marathon.  As a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team In Training program, I have pledged to train on the behalf of all the affected children and their families to help raise money for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and Myeloma research and patient assistance programs.

Leukemia is the #1 disease killer of children and the leading fatal malignant disease of men and women under the age of 35.  Although the cause of leukemia remains unknown, recently developed treatments and steady advances in research bring us closer to a cure every day.  These research advances were only achieved as a result of contributions made by companies, foundations and individuals like you. 

My goal is to raise $3000 by February 1st.   If you would like to help, please consider registering for my virtual Turkey Trot.  For this event, anytime from now until the end of November, run, walk, skip or crawl  your chosen distance—BLING included!  As a thank you for registering, I will send you a finisher medal. This Turkey Trot is a family event!   If you register, your family members can participate too at a discounted rate.  The race distance is at your discretion.  You know your family best.  This race is designed for your family to spend time together and get some physical activity at the same time.  You all will earn your very own medal!   Here's the donation to register:
Donate $20 and you will receive a Turkey Trot medal. 
The medal you will receive! 
Donate $30 will enter you and one other person.  You will receive two medals.
Donate $40 will enter three people.  You will receive three medals.
Donate $50 will enter four.  You will receive four medals.

Number of People Registered:

My goal for this race if for you to have your medals for Thanksgiving morning. I have 100 of them here and ready to go!  I plan to ship medals on November 6th and November 16th in hopes that you will have them for Thanksgiving day.  Because I can not control what happens after I ship, I can not guarantee the medals will arrive before Thanksgiving, but I will work very hard to get them to you in time.  No proof or time needs to be submitted.  You choose your distance and make this a fun event.  Already running a Turkey Trot?  Register for this one and earn a medal while you run your local race.

Thank You!

A dream is a wish...