Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tinker Bell Half: Food for Thought

runDisney has been making a lot of great changes this year, especially with adding new races. They've been adding the 10k distance like crazy to their event rosters: the Disneyland Half weekend added a 10k and the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge, WDW Marathon added the Minnie 10k and made the Dopey Challenge official (5k + 10k + half + full), and the Princess Half weekend added the Enchanted 10k and Glass Slipper Challenge. 

There have been rumors of a 10k being added to the Tinker Bell Half weekend. When I read this blog post by Longhorns, I knew I had to do some of my own research. But you still heard/read from her first! (On a side note, her blog is pretty awesome. You should definitely check it out!)

I did a little googling and found these. Among them a $175 price tag for the Tink Half. 
This is last year's Tink page on Active:

 This is what I found for this year. Notice anything different about the date(s)?

Look similar to Fri-Sun dates for Dumbo?

Obviously there would be no deferred link for a Tink 10k since it wasn't offered last year. The new date range has really got me curious. 

Of course this is all speculation. If you have any ideas or insight, please weigh in! 

Glass Slipper & Princess Half Price Comparison Follow Up

The long awaited prices for runDisney's Princess Half Marathon weekend have finally been released. There's been a lot of buzz going on around the events taking place at Walt Disney World in February with the introduction of a new race- the Enchanted 10k- and a new challenge- the Glass Slipper Challenge (the 10k and half completed over 2 days). 

With registration opening in less than 2 weeks on June 11th, lots of anxious Princesses (and I'm sure some Princes) were holding their breath regarding the price tag. The wait is over! 
I'd just ignore the price jumps after August 13th- I'm sure it'll sell out before then!

If you'll recall, I did a quick price analysis/guess post back in April when the Glass Slipper Challenge was announced. Let's see how things compared! 

Enchanted 10k
Guess: $95, Actual: $95

Princess Half 
Guess: $150, Actual: $160  (This is a $20 jump from last year, as opposed to the historic $10/yr increase. But it's not surprising, since the WDW half was also priced at $160.)

Glass Slipper Challenge 
Guess: $255, Actual: $270  (Only $15 extra on top of the half and 10k fees, which isn't bad considering the extra shirt and medal.)

All things considered, I'm not sure it mattered too much what the prices turned out to be. Personally, if I was already set on running the 10k, half or Glass Slipper Challenge, it didn't really matter how much more it was than my guess- I'd find a way to fund it. Which is precisely what happened with the Dumbo Challenge... ;)

Are any of you running during the Princess Half Marathon weekend? Did the price release really matter to you? 

Training Tuesday: 2nd Back-to-back Run

In light of the hubby getting his first somewhat real job and my promotion, we hit the outlets for some good shopping. I got a pair of nude heels and a dress for work. 

My training lately has been feeling kind of bland. I feel like I'm stuck in a gray area where I need to be training, but the event still seems so far out that I'm not that worried about it (which I know will not be the case very soon)! I still got in my second back-to-back Dumbo training run (this time it was 3 miles and 8 miles) to prepare for running the 10k and 1/2 on consecutive days. 

Weekly Recap
Tues: 1 mile 
Wed: 2.5 mile run
Thurs: push ups, sit ups
Fri: 3 mile run
Sat: 8.2 mile run
Sun: push ups, sit ups
Mon: rest

The hubby and I are going on a little getaway to wine country. We're staying at a little place on a vineyard and we're allowed to roam the grounds freely- can you say running through the grape vines?! :)
My goal for next week is to work on my pace. I run outside, so it's hard to run at a set, controlled pace. My plan is to map out one mile, run at a faster than normal pace and see   how it goes. I'll adjust my speed after that. 

Did you do anything special for the holiday weekend? 

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Race Costumes

I have been thinking about race costumes since the moment I got this email: 

I want to do something that is Disney themed (I feel like that's a given since the race is at Disneyland) and couple-y, since I'm running with my husband. He has graciously said he will wear anything as long as it makes me happy. (Hmm. Too good to be true? Sounds kinda like a trap, huh?) 
He has already voiced that he doesn't want to be a Prince; he wants to be someone that did something. Yes, you're preaching to the choir. We could have gotten into a long winded discussion about how Eric was so influential in Ariel's future, etc, but I pick my battles and still consider this a win. So that's ruled out pretty much all of the Princesses/Princes. 

Ideas so far:

Wall-E & Eve
Probably the hardest to make and run in. Not sure how Dearest will fair running in a box in the heat.

Star Wars Themed
Lots of choices here: R2D2 & C3P0, Princess Leia & Han Solo (& possibly my brother as Luke Skywalker)

Rapunzel & Flynn
Easiest costumes to make and run in. Unfortunately, I don't have the trademark flowing blond hair and I don't want to wear a wig. 
(Pretty sure the side-eye Flynn is giving Rapunzel is the same one Dearest gave me when I told him I wanted us to dress up.)

Mulan & Mushu
Sort of the obvious choice (lol) and the hubby is ok dressing up as Mushu. I think I would have a hard time making Mushu's tail, not to mention how to get his ears, blue horns and yellow whiskers on a costume.

Thoughts? Suggestions to add? Votes?  

Friday, May 24, 2013

Big News!

Or not.... 

A little over a month ago, my work situation at the bank changed drastically. The position above me was cut and I ended up picking up a majority of the work load... with no pay increase or promotion. You can imagine how thrilled I was.... 

I am so happy to say that has changed now! I now have a sweet new title (Assistant Manager) and a boost in pay, which if I have my way, will go towards more running vacations! :) Hard work definitely pays off! 

As a little celebration (for his birthday, too), the hubby and I are going away for a few nights next week.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Running Tip Jar

Thanks to the fantastic Lena over at The Beginners Runner, I now have a new motivational tool to add to my training for the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge: a running tip jar. It's pretty easy- for every run, you "tip" yourself and put some money in the jar. The money saved up can be used for expo purchases (you know you'll drop a chunk of change there) or other fun stuff during the race weekend. Lena had such a fun phrase on her jar- "the more you run... the more for fun!" I just had to use it. I hope that was ok, Lena! 

I'm planning to go with a $1/mile rate, hopefully it'll keep me motivated to stick to my 3 mile weekday maintenance runs. I showed my hubby the jar and explained my plan. He's excited for it, but I don't think he'll be participating, since he regularly averages 100+ miles/month! He'd have an awesome stash at the end, though! 

Here are some pictures (plus my Disneyland 1/2 race shirt turned tote bag in the background). 

Would you try a tip jar? Do you have any other motivational tricks? 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

T-99 Days!

We're just 99 days away until the awesome weekend in which I'll be running for these shiny guys! Down to double digits!
Clearly I am motivated by the shiny medals. I confess I'm more excited for the 10k medal than Dumbo. It looks so intricate! Training is ramping up and I'm getting my costumes sorted out (hopefully).  

Do you have a favorite medal? Why? 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Training Tuesday: Nonstop Running?

If this is what defines a bad boy, my husband would be the baddest of them all. We had a good laugh over this. :) 

I started a new running strategy last week, courtesy of the hubby. I've been having a hard time getting into my training and maintaining a decent pace, so he suggested I aim for running without stopping. He told me just run and if I could only go 20 or 25 minutes, just stop there. Then next time, aim for a longer run. So far it's been working out pretty well. My first nonstop run was that Monday (technically supposed to be on last week's recap) with 2.7 miles at a 9:53 pace. I actually only stopped because I ran out of time (can't be late for work!) 
My weekday runs are for going nonstop, where as my weekend runs are purely for distance. I'm also adding some push ups and sit ups in there while I figure out a new plan for some strength training. I'm losing upper body muscle mass, so I need to fix that. I'm also stretching everyday. 

Weekly Recap
Tues: push ups, sit ups
Wed: 1 mile (I also discovered today that 30 mins is not enough time for my food to settle, hence the sort run.)
Thurs: push ups, sit ups
Fri: 3.1 miles
Sat: rest
Sun: 8.2 miles (missed my best 10k time by 5 seconds!)
Mon: push ups, sit ups

This weekend I go on my second back-to-back run days to train for Dumbo with 3 miles Saturday and 6 on Sunday. 

Do you have a running strategy? Are you an interval kind of person or do you like to run straight through? 

Monday, May 20, 2013

Liebster Awards!

Many thanks to Lauren over at Lauren's Glass Slipper for nominating me for a Liebster Award! As Lauren explains, The Liebster award is a way of personally recognizing your favorite up-and-coming blogs that inspire you. Also, more thanks to Karen over at Losing the Glass Slippers for nominating me as well! :) It's definitely nice to know that my thoughts and ramblings aren't just going into cyberspace. 

Here's how it works:

1. Write 11 random facts about yourself.
2. Answer the 11 questions given by the person who nominated you.
3. Create 11 new questions.
4. Nominate 11 bloggers and mention them in your post.
5. Thank the person that nominated you and tell the people you've nominated. 

Let's get started!

My 11 Random Facts

1. I'm less than 5ft tall. At 4ft 11.5inches (yes, every bit counts!), my height, or lack there of, is one of the first things people notice. I'm not a little person, just very petite, or "fun size" like the candy bars. ;) I actually enjoy being short, too. 
2. My drink of choice is beer. I mostly drink imports, like Heineken or Newcastle, though I've been enjoying Longboards lately. Reminds me of Hawaii.
3. I love to sew. Mostly little things, like purses, wallets or travel bags. 
4. I studied film in college. Yes, there was a lot of movie watching, but there were a ton of papers and analysis. Even years later, I sometimes find myself dissecting a movie in the theater. 
5. I love photography. Some day I hope to make it my career. Here's one of my favorites. 
6. I've never had a bloody nose. Random, right? 
7. Seahorses are one of my favorite animals.  
8. I wore red shoes at my wedding. 
9. I only cut my hair once a year. This is really just because I'm lazy about it. 
10. When husband and I first started dating, we solidified our relationship status over a $120 long distance phone call from Italy to California. Best money I ever spent. :) 
11. I collect Mickey Antenna Balls. Prepare to be shocked... 
Did your jaw drop? ;) I have over 200 of these little guys. I started collecting them over 10 years ago when I found a bunch on sale. Since then, I've slowly been adding to my collection. We still rent, so I haven't figured out a way to display them. Hopefully some day. :) 

My 11 Questions from Lauren:
1. What race is at the top of your running bucket list?
The full marathon at WDW. A close second was the original marathon course in Greece. 

2. If money was no object and you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Hmm... Probably somewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area. I can't see myself leaving California. 

3. What is your current running goal that you are working towards?
To run a half marathon in under 2 hours. HUGE stretch goal. 

4. What is your favorite food to eat after a race?
For the Disneyland half last year, my hubby and I planned out our "victory lunch"- the fried green tomato sandwich w/ sweet potato fries at The Hungry Bear restaurant at Disneyland. If you haven't eaten there, it's a MUST! 

5. Of all the blog posts you have written, which one is your favorite?

6. What is your favorite movie?
I hate when people ask this- it's SO hard to answer! ;) Probably Love Actually.

7. Who is your favorite Disney character?
Steamboat Willie, which I guess is really just Mickey from way back in the day.

8. Dogs or Cats?

9. What is one thing you REALLY want to do in the next 5 years (does not have to be running related)?
Go back to Italy! 

10. Best piece of running advice anyone has ever given you?
Just keep running. If you think you need to stop, slow down for a bit, then keep going. 

11. What is your dream job?
One of those VIP tour guides at Disneyland. In the real world, a photographer or film critic.

My 11 Questions from Karen:
1. Tutu or Sparkleskirt?
I haven't tried either, but I think I'm going to make my own Sparkleskirt for my next race.

2. How many furry kids do you have? 

3. How long have you been running? 
3 years or so. 

4. What's your profession?  
Supervisor at a bank.

5. What's one of your favorite childhood memories?
Vacationing at Disneyland with my family. 

6. Do you fuel during runs? What and when?
I eat Clif Shot Bloks starting around mile 5? Or earlier if I need a boost. I only eat one or two for the whole run, though.

7. What was the last book you read?
Currently reading Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella. It's not raunchy like the title makes it seem, but it's super funny.  

8. Favorite race/distance you have run?
I've only raced half marathons, but I really enjoy going 10k or longer. It takes me a while to settle into running.

9. Three songs you love to run to?
The theme song from Rocky... LOL 
The Edge of Glory by Lady Gaga- I planned this on my playlist to be my finish line song for my first race. I didn't think about it the whole race, but by coincidence it was actually playing when I finished!
I Gotta Feelin by the Black Eyed Peas

10. Where is your favorite place to vacation?
Italy. I hope to go back with my hubby soon. :)

11. Why do you love running? I know this gets asked a lot, but I never tire of hearing what runners love about running! 
Everything! Even the blisters and funky things that happen to your husband's toenails when he runs. lol. I love the way I feel after, the sense of accomplishment, the awesome medals you get, etc. 

My 11 Questions for You:
1. Why did you start blogging?
2. Do you have a nickname and how did you get it?
3. If you could have any car, what would you drive?
4. When reading, do you prefer an Ebook or physical paper book?
5. Do you cook? What's your favorite meal to make?
6. What's your favorite wine?
7. Milk or cream in your coffee?
8. You have a month of vacation and money is no object- where would you go?
9. Funniest thing that's happened to you recently?
10. Favorite TV show that's on air right now? 
11. Mac or PC?

My 11 Nominees!

Lena @ The Beginners Runner
Jen C. @ Hello Fitness... We meet Again...
Karen @ Losing the Glass Slippers
Jaime @ It's Gotta Be Here Somewhere
Patty @ Margaritas, Miles & The Mouse
Jennifer K. @ Red Hair & Running Shoes
Lacey & Meranda @ Fairytales & Fitness
Sarah @ sarah runs a lot
Jodi @ 13.1 Miles to Disney 
Meg @ Runaway Royalty

If you stuck with me this far, congrats! This was a lengthy one! 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

First runDisney Email for Disneyland Half Weekend

After a long day at work, I love finding an email like this! The first round of runDisney reminder emails just arrived. It doesn't say anything too pertinent, just congratulations for registering, training tips and reminds you that you can save on your travel arrangements. 

Another important thing in the email is updating proof of time. The last day to email a change is July 1st, but you can also update it at the expo (although changes at the expo discontinue in 2014). 

Even little emails like this keep me motivated and build anticipation for the race. But it also reminds me that I need to figure out our costumes! It's coming up fast! 

Do you get excited about a race months in advance? How do you prepare? 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Tuesday Training: Cross Training

This pretty much sums up how I feel. I don't have too many details right now, but I will have some *hopefully* exciting news to share in a couple weeks! :) In other exciting news, it looks like the hubby will have a job offer or two in the next week. This will mark the start of his engineering career after 5 years in school. I am beyond excited. He's worked so hard to get this far (and the additional income doesn't hurt!)

This past week's training was overall blah. I started the week by stepping on the scale and seeing a number I hadn't seen in over two years. *commence freak out* I've been noticing that I'm losing muscle mass and overall strength. I had challenged myself to do the 30 Day Shred back in December for 30 days straight. I may not have lost a lot of weight, but I was more toned than ever before. After that, I picked up running again, but I'm realizing now how important it is to cross train. My running is suffering- I can't run as far without stopping anymore and the longer distances are really difficult. 

Weekly Recap
Tuesday: cross training (yoga)
Wednesday: 5k run 30 Day Shred
Thursday: rest 1.5 mile run
Friday: 5k run
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 7 mile run 6.2 mile run
Monday: rest

I started back with the 30DS (and thankfully the scale has returned to normal), but this was a wake up call for me to kick up the cross training and overall fitness. I'm taking on a new approach- cross training about ever other day or the days I don't run, even if it's just a few sets of push ups, pull ups and sit ups. I'm also focusing less on my pace and more on running without stopping. A lot of it is mental- that quote above speaks to my running as well. If I want to improve, I have to work for it. Hopefully this new approach will work better. 

Do you cross train? Do you think it makes a difference in your running? 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Cheddar Bay Biscuits

If you've ever eaten at Red Lobster, you probably remember their delicious cheddar biscuits. While I'm not a huge fan of the food at Red Lobster, I'm always up for eating there for the biscuits. I found a copy cat recipe that's super close and quite tasty. 

Cheddar Bay Biscuits
(makes about a dozen small biscuits)

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper powder
4 oz cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup of butter, melted and cooled for a few minutes

2 tbsp butter, melted
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp fresh parsley, minced

Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, garlic powder and cayenne. Stir in the shredded cheddar. 
In another bowl, measure out the buttermilk. Slowly pour in the butter while mixing until small clumps form. 
Pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients and stir just until everything is wet. 
Use two spoons to drop biscuits about half the size of an ice cream scoop. 

Bake for 12 minutes or just until golden. 

While the biscuits are in the oven, mix the topping ingredients together. 
Immediately brush the biscuits after they come out of the oven. Don't over do the brushing! 
Cool for a few minutes and enjoy! 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Fantasmic! Glow with the Show AP Preview Night

Back in August, my brother and I had the opportunity to attend the annual passholder preview night of Fantasmic! with the "Glow with the Show" ear-hat additions. "Glow with the Show" ears use infrared technology that let guests become part of the magic as the ears sync up to the colors in the show and beat of the music. The ears first debuted to compliment World of Color in California Adventure and Disney hosted a few AP preview nights and gave out complimentary ear hats. For Fantasmic! there was only one preview night and it was BYOEH (bring your own ear hats). :)

Here are some photos from the event: 

Glowing ears everywhere! 

Lots of reds and purples for Beauty and the Beast.

The ears glowed red to match the fire.

It was really amazing to see thousands of ear hats glowing in sync with the show. It really makes a difference in the experience. Later on the same trip, we saw World of Color. There were only a handful of hats and I think people saw them more as a nuisance because they didn't know what they were. 

I think there are more cameras/cell phones than ears glowing.

What do you think of Glow with the Show? Do you think they enhance or hinder the show? 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Dumbo, Disneyland 1/2, 10k & 5k Medals Revealed!

This morning, the medals for the upcoming Disneyland Half Marathon weekend were revealed! 

I know there were a lot of guesses that the Dumbo medal would look like the design on the training plan- looks like you were right! The DL 1/2 medal looks the same as the past few years, which was expected. I like that the 10k medal includes a tea cup in the design!

Check out more on the Disney Parks Blog post here.

What do you think of the medals? 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Training Tuesday: Relaxed Running

I thought life had been crazy a few weeks ago, but boy was I wrong. This past week was insane. Work is stressing me out big time and Dearest is going through his own school/work stress as well. I'm trying to focus on my running- I need at least one constant in my life, right? 

This is pretty much how I feel.

This past week was interesting. I worked 6 days in a row (M-Sat with no OT either because our work week starts on Saturday) and I was dead tired. I started off poorly with my training, but it got better by the time the weekend rolled around. Sunday's long run was supposed to be 7 miles, but I ended up going a little further than 8. I was following Dearest along the path we run, but I didn't realize that he was planning to go further than I was. Oops. :) The long run was purely for distance, so I wasn't watching my time. The sun was out in full force- good heat training for Disneyland, right? I walked a lot and my pace was terrible, but I don't mind. It was such a beautiful day to be outside and go for a relaxing run. :)

Previous Week
Tuesday: 5k run rest
Wednesday: cross training (yoga) 2 mile run
Thursday: 2 mile run push ups/sit ups
Friday: 5k run
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 7 mile run 8.2 mile run
Monday: rest

I'm taking things easier this week and eliminating one of my run days, which seems to happen anyway. Maybe this Sunday I'll keep better track and go just the 7 miles. 

This Week / T- 16 weeks until Dumbo
Tuesday: cross training (yoga)
Wednesday: 5k run
Thursday: rest
Friday: 5k run
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 7 mile run 
Monday: rest

How was your week? Have you ever run just for distance and not monitored your pace?

Friday, May 3, 2013

Top 3 Queues to Wait In at Disneyland

A visit to Disneyland usually involves a lot of waiting in lines. Disney does a superb job with total immersion into the theme of the ride, including the waiting queues. Next time you're in the park, take a look around in line. There are tons of fun details. Here are my top 3 lines you will want to wait in at Disneyland. 

Indiana Jones: Temple of the Forbidden Eye: The Indiana Jones building itself is really well done. The exterior looks like an actual temple and the queue leads you straight into the building. 


When the ride first opened in 1995, little decoder cards were handed out so you could read the messages on the wall. My ever-so-serious dad totally scared me (and I'm pretty sure the family next in line) when I started to take a drink of water and he shouted "Wait! It says poison!" ;) 

Star Tours: The line for Star Tours has always had tons of fun things to look at, such as talking robots, C-3PO, and a Star Tours pod. After the ride renovation in 2011, it's only gotten more interactive. 

photo courtesy of

Haunted Mansion: This classic ride is a beauty to look at. The mansion has so much detail from the iron gates at the entrance to the little graveyard on the lawn. The ride "starts" even before you get into the doom buggies. The queue is totally interactive- from the portrait gallery to the long hall.

Stay tuned for my Top 3 Queues to Wait in at California Adventure!

Do you have a favorite line to wait in at Disneyland?