Tag Archives: #RacingtheDream

Paris Marathon Expo

19 Jun

Once we got checked in to the hotel – the super lovely Hotel Powers – the first order of business was to hit the expo. And have some food!!

But first, it was REALLY time to change clothes and freshen up!! The weather in Paris was a bit warmer than we’d expected! Luckily Eydie had something in her carry on to change into and I brought a couple of my favorite new SkirtSports skirts so in no time we were ready to head out!

We had a super fancy key to the room and I will admit that it took us a while to figure out how it worked!! 🙂

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We did eventually figure out how to lock the door!!

After figuring out what Metro ticket to buy we hopped on a train and ended up, eventually, at the right stop! And the race excitement started to kick in!

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Food first – we found a cafe across from the expo venue and had salads. After asking for the bill several times, we gave up, left money on the table and headed across the boulevard to what was billed as “The Running Room”

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Salon du Running. The Running Room. And so the excitement begins!!

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Separate entrances for runners and non-runners…but we all ended up in exactly the same place!

As expos go, this was a darn good one. As large as NYC or Marine Corps but it didn’t seem as tight and packed with people. They had a massive board with all the names on it and we found mine! Always prepared, Eydie had a highlighter with her so we defaced the property!

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Really. You can’t see it, but my name is there!!

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Yep! There it is!!!

I picked up my number and my swag – which was more than what has been given out at US events lately!

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Water bottle, rain vest, gummies, sport belt (not pictured cause I forgot!), pistachios

We also grabbed our shirts and ‘Merica flags for the breakfast run the next day. I stopped by the runDisney booth, but it was tough to get someone’s attention – and boo for me since I heard they were giving out some cool luggage tags (sad face)

I picked up my pace band and location postcard from the Asics booth – which was pretty cool since Eydie could use the card to – hopefully – meet up with me along the course!

 

 

Since it had been a long day we made our way out of the hall and back to the Metro. When we got back to our neighborhood, we wandered and found a market where water and wine was purchased 🙂 Late lunch meant we weren’t hungry, but we WERE tired! Plus, we had a big early day the next day!!

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Flat Anne and Flat Eydie for the Breakfast run!! #RacingtheDream

Breakfast run tomorrow!

Wine and Dine Weekend

15 Dec

So, it’s been well over a month since I’ve recapped anything — let’s hope I remember how this works!!

I’ll start with Wine and Dine weekend – or as several of my friends have dubbed it “runDisney Splash and Dash”. Yeah. it rained. Not the WHOLE time mind you, just those crucial hours where we were waiting in the corrals and then the actually running of the Half Marathon 🙂

But before it rained, there was fun!

I got in Friday morning-ish.

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Magical Express – the first of many lines for the weekend. Even though I actually was the line 🙂

 

My plan was to meet up with friends over at the Magic Kingdom, but it turns out that was the first night of the Very Merry Christmas Party so the line to even get on a bus was crazy! I decided then to go to the expo and grab my things instead of doing that Saturday.

After getting my loot and dropping it off at the hotel, I headed over to EPCOT for some International Food and Wine-ing instead! Met up with one of my running group friends, Sarah, to get her a key to the room since she was going to be sharing a couple of the nights there. We wandered and snacked. Snacked and wandered. Got back to the room fairly early. I had a breakfast reservation on Saturday and Sarah had a 5K to run!

Since Sarah was getting up for the 5K, I woke up early as well and decided to go out for a run myself. 3 miles around the lake at POP Century and Art of Animation – bunnies galore!! And a gorgeous view!

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Evil Bunny…or, bad lighting.

 

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I mean…really…

 

Then I got dressed and headed to breakfast.

The Breakfast. Ya’ll..amazing! And fun! This is the deal – during Food and Wine, there are different seminars and events going on. This Parisian Breakfast is one such event! For a VERY reasonable (especially by Disney standards) 39.00, you can have breakfast in France, before the park opens to the public!

We were greeted at the door to Chefs de France with a mimosa and brought to the table.

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As a ‘single’ I was seated with a few other ladies who were on their own for the morning.  The buffet was filled with pastries, and charcuterie and…pastries…Chocolate was also poured at the table

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Mmmmm. Note: this was definitely not a diabetes friendly breakfast but I was prepared!

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See…there’s some cheese on there too…Frangipani and pain du chocolat. And a savory palmier

 

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That’s a pumpkin danish…it was tasty.

 

Waiters continued to refill the mimosas throughout the morning. To save on sugar, I switched away from the mimosa to…

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I’m sure le garcon had a huge laugh at me!

 

Conversation was wonderful and eventually the deliciousness had to end – we were given a small “goodie bag” with a reusable shopping bag, a small recipe book and some jam!

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I wandered EPCOT a bit then headed to Hollywood Studios for a while, looking for lunch. Fail. 🙂

Headed back to POP to take a nap/hang by the pool before finding dinner – a burger at Art of Animation – and getting ready to start the running adventure!

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Getting in the Christmas spirit!

 

I met up with some more running group friends to get the bus over to World of Sports to start the race. Had some pre-race character picture opportunities before potties and meeting up with the rest of our group!

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Not exactly a character…

 

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Me and my may-un!

 

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Our gracious hostess

 

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Head Chef Mickey

 

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Chip and Dale. And Me.

 

Since we’d had such fun at the Princess Half, Vanessa (from seevrun) and I had decided to tackle this one together. Head over here and read her recap of the event! When we headed to the corrals, Vanessa and I found it nearly impossible to get into place so kind of just followed the crowd. OR…maybe one of us suggested we slip in at the back of the corral in front of our assigned corral (let the haters hate now!). By now it had started drizzling, then raining, then drizzling….thankfully I had a plastic poncho so managed to stay dry most of the time – I eventually threw it away around mile 10 though!

Running Disney at night is a completely different experience than running in daylight! For Wine and Dine, one of the BIGGEST and BEST differences is the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights. And, it must have been an early Christmas miracle, because for the briefest moment, the rain stopped and we were able to get some pictures!

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Just playin’ it cool….

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V and I and the lights. Picture from seevrun.blogspot.com

Before the lights, though, there is the “Disco Tunnel” — part of the course takes us through a service corridor in the Prop and Costume area and Disney fancies this up with a couple of disco balls and of course some disco music. This is where I learned that I cannot dance and run at the same time. It’s actually quite possible that I can’t dance, period. 🙂

We met up with friends at the end after changing into dry-ish clothes. My bag had gotten a hole in it so some things were a bit damp! We didn’t venture much farther than Mexico — and our post-race supper was nachos!

The night was really winding down – or the morning was winding up! – and it was time to catch a bus back to the resort. Turns out, our bus driver didn’t know where she was going so it took us a little longer to get back — once in, I hung up all my things to dry and hopped into bed for a few hours of not-exactly-sleep before a couple more days in the parks!!

All in all it was a fantastic weekend! Great times, with great friends. Now looking forward to spending time with these folks in a few weeks when I head back down for #Dopey15 (can’t believe THAT is almost happening!!)

 

It Just Keeps Getting Bigger!!!

30 Sep

starting line

And no, I’m not talking about my rear view 😉 Note – if you are trying to find a picture of someone’s rear end, google will show you a lot of nekkid ones….

I’m talking about my list of upcoming races – or as I like to call them “events” (since I don’t actually race much other than my own self!). And since I’m doing all this training I thought a good reminder was in order.

So, in Order of Appearance, here we go:

Hartford Half Marathon – I’m actually also doing the new “One Mile Friday” which is, yep, a One mile run in Hartford followed by a beer 🙂 After the half I’ll get this beauty:

hartford half medal

Hershey Half Marathon – I’ll be doing this one with my friends Kathy and Jennifer. And, we will of course be headed to the park on Saturday before for Roller Coastering! And, I think for this one, we don’t know what the medal will be ahead of time so it will be a delicious surprise!!

Marine Corps Marathon – This is the ‘biggie’ for 2014! You know, the one you can show your support of my efforts by donating to the Tug McGraw Foundation! C’mon! It doesn’t hurt!!

runDisney Wine and Dine Half Marathon – This one we do for “fun” — and the training miles 🙂 And after the miles and before the Food and Wine-ing I’ll get this around my neck (bonus – it spins!!):

2014 Wine Dine Half Marathon Medal

Santa Hustle Half Marathon –  This was a new add (like Hartford) since I’m getting to the point of having some really long weekend runs, I *know* it will be tons easier for me to get them in if I have an event. Not that I don’t love circling my town a few times to get my long runs in…Plus SANTA!!!

TXU Turkey Trot 10K – Everyone should do a Turkey Trot at least once!! This is a nice one – I’ve done the 5K before. And, really, it’s probably best to start the holiday eating season by moving a little!!

Then…after Thanksgiving I’m taking a ‘break’ – from organized events! That is, until I get to the Main Event:

Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend: Dopey Challenge – 4 Races, 6 Medals (Okay, one of the ‘medals’ is a rubber medallion but still…) 4 Races? 5K on Thursday, 10K on Friday, Half Marathon on Saturday and Full Marathon on Sunday –  I had planned to do the Goofy Challenge this year since it’s an anniversary year and then they went and added that crazy 10K in there!

Aramco Houston Half Marathon  – I deferred this one in 2014 since I was having so many issues even walking! I’ve done this one a few times and it’s a nice course and a really great event! They’ve also added a 5K on the day before so of course I said “What the heck, why not?!

Publix Georgia Half Marathon – So now I’m entering “what was I thinking” territory! This one was registered for when I saw that I could get in for something like 34 or 40 dollars! Really. That’s it. Plus, it’s one I’ve often thought of doing so….there ya go!

The next Biggie — Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris – Another one where I entered a lottery on a whim, et voila! Making this into a fun trip with a friend. She’s even decided to do the Paris Breakfast Run the day before!

And then, my pal Jackie applied appropriate pressure to get me to sign up for the Brand New! runDisney Pixie Dust Challenge! So new it isn’t even up on the runDisney page yet!!

So there you have it. And all I can say is WHOA! If nothing else, I am definitely feeling way more motivated to train than I normally am. Which is to say, I am feeling motivated to train 🙂

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Tower of Terror 10 Miler

21 Oct

When last we saw our heroine, she was decidedly “taking it easy” after a 5K trail run leading to the Tower of Terror 10 Miler. After showering and getting things ready for the night, it was time to head out and meet up with some internet friends! We were getting together for lunch at Raglan Road in Downtown Disney. It’s always tough to know what to eat the night before a race, but when the race is at night, it’s even a little harder. And, how sad to be in an Irish restaurant and not able to indulge in an adult beverage or two! Given the heat and need to stay hydrated it just was not a great idea!

After lunch I headed back to the hotel to try to relax, maybe sleep. I was feeling sleepy but of course was not falling asleep at all!! So I got up and got dressed, figuring I’d get to the start line and enjoy the festivities since I was awake!

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I put on my “Fallen Angel” costume and then decided that I couldn’t run with these wings at all! They were floppier than your traditional fairy wings 🙂 Grabbed my post race flip flops and threw a few more things in my checked bag and headed for the bus. At least this time, no one called me a Girl Scout!!

I hopped off the bus and jumped in the first line I saw – photo ops you know! After waiting maybe about 45 minutes, talking to the guy behind me (who kept saying “I don’t have the patience to wait in this line” all the way to the front of the line!) until we got to the front – then we took pictures and went our separate ways. Oh, Impatient Guy, we hardly knew ye.

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Then I checked my bag and headed over to the best pre-race entertainment ANYWHERE – the Disney Dance Party!! Woot!! And yes, I actually danced. You would too!

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Eventually it was time to move to the corrals. Again, much like this morning, the corrals were definitely well-defined and separated and as far as I could tell, people were being cool about getting in the right place! There was still an hour or so before the first group would take off and I was starting to wish I’d managed a nap…

Then the fireworks started!! The best part about Disney races starting in the dark (either before sunrise or after sunset!) is the Fireworks! Every corral gets their own special fiery sendoff!

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For this race, there was the addition of “spooky” green laser lights flashing across the start line.

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At last my corral took off and I have to admit I was a little afraid I wasn’t going to be able to finish…not sure why. But I stuck with my intervals as best I could and managed to stop for a few character visits along the course.

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We got to run through Wide World of Sports again, and this time, we ran through Champions stadium. When we entered, there were some people in the stands, not a lot. But on the field? Well..there were some unfortunate ball players. At least, their uniforms were still on the field. I didn’t know it at the time, but that big static electricity making thing on the pitcher’s mound was a Tesla Coil – very cool effect!! Once out of WWOS we were in the home stretch and headed back to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

We ran through the park and back out to more Behind the Scenes areas until we approached the finish line – around the backside of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. I made it!! And, I think I’m finally getting back in the groove and knocking some of my minutes off. I felt good and ready for an ice cold beer and maybe a snack!

After finishing we were directed back into the park, to the Indiana Jones show stage to pick up bags

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– and there were tents for changing. I figured there was no need for that, but I did take off my shoes and socks and got my flip flops on!! I had another meetup planned with some more internet people!! We got together for pictures and then split up.

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A few of us went on a couple of rides – after a potty stop at a super secret I’m not telling ANYONE location that had NO LINE!! First we hit Tower of Terror of course! LOVE that ride!! And, since the park was only runners and family/friends there was a very minimal line! Next up was Aerosmith Rock and Roller Coaster. Love it! And the Disney Cast Member was hilarious ad-libbing at almost 3 in the morning!! After Rocking and Rolling we headed to Toy Story Mania – during a normal day at the park it can take 2 hours to get through this line. We got in in about 20 minutes. That’s right! This is a fun, 3D arcade like ride. I’m not great at these…but fun!! Then The Great Movie Ride – Lots of people in line for this!!

By this time, it was nearly 4 in the morning and the crowd was thinning out a little. And I have to admit, I was getting a little tired!! So we headed out towards the buses and split to get back to our resorts.

This race was FUN! And I LOVED the after party!! I was so tired but at the same time pretty amped up – I ended up getting back to my room and sitting in some ice for a very short time.

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Then a hot shower and jammies and ….laying in bed, watching the sun start to come up outside of the window! I thought it was really pretty funny when I walked into the lobby of the Port Orleans and there were people in there hauling suitcases and heading to the airport! Not sure why it was so funny – but we all laughed!!

I did finally doze off but, for the first time in my stay, Housekeeping showed up at 9 am! Good thing she woke me up – I would’ve missed out on some Food and Wine Festival fun!!

Would definitely do this one again! Not sure when…we’ll have to see about that!!  

Oh yeah…bet you thought I forgot. The Bling:

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And ya’ll…it GLOWS IN THE DARK!!

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