Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend : Official Race Guide

The race guide for the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend has been posted on the runDisney website and you can find it here. It's jam packed with information and if you weren't excited before, you certainly will be after reading it!

Here are some of the highlights for me: 

Races, Expo & Park Hours

 Thinking about other runDisney races? Here are the dates. I'll be at Tink and the DL Half again next year! 

I've never run a "challenge" race before, so I wasn't sure how the bibs would go. Judging by Goofy, I assumed it would be one bib for both races. But where do you pick up your bib? In the 10k section? Half? This explains it! There's a separate Dumbo packet pick up section.

You'll need to wear that same bib both days to get your Dumbo medal. Be sure to keep an eye on those safety pins after the 10k!

To ensure that you've completed both parts of the Dumbo Challenge, you'll get a special wristband after completing the 10k. Then after the half, you'll go to the Dumbo tent to trade in that wristband for your Dumbo medal. (From runDisney's final race instructions)

 Corral assignments have been released and here is the map. See my post on corral assignments here. My first year in 2011, I started way at the end of the last corral- G. It's literally up the ramp that leads into the Mickey and Friends parking structure! 

 The nerd in me loves this! I hope I'm still running when I'm 81!

 Got any "must-haves" for the expo? Here's the list of vendors and where they will be. My recommendation is to hit the official merchandise area first, head all the way across to pick up your shirt and goodie bag, and then take your time with the rest of the expo. 

The inaugural 10k course map was released as well. See my post on it here

The 2013 course map was also released. It looks exactly the same as last year, except for a few squiggles here and there. 

 2012 Course Map

* All photos taken from the runDisney Disneyland Half Marathon official race guide

I'm so excited!!!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Disneyland Half Corral Assignments

Guess what came out today?!! The Disneyland Half Marathon corral assignments! :)

Anyone else notice the typo? Lol

In 2011, my first half and first race ever, we started in Corral G. All the way in the back, up the ramp that leads into the Mickey & Friends Parking Structure. 
If you squint hard enough, I *think* you can see the start line. 

In 2012, using an estimated finish of 2:45 (our finish time in 2011 was 2:48 and I knew we would finish under that), we were in Corral D. 
See that sign on the right? Look how much closer it is! 

This year, using our 2012 finish time of 2:23, I'm in Corral C! My husband ran another half in April and finished in 1:51, so he's in Corral A. Speedy, huh? I'm super excited for this race- I'm hoping for a significant PR. :) 

Are you running the Disneyland Half Marathon this year? What corral are you in? 

Training Tuesday

Someone pinch me. I actually stuck to my training plan for the entire week! I shocked even myself! 
This is the first week since starting my Dumbo training plan 15 weeks ago that I actually completed every run. Sad, but true. I really think it has to do with hanging up my schedule and seeing how few weeks we have to go. 

Weekly Recap
Tues: 2 miles
Wed: rest
Thurs: 2 miles
Fri: 3 miles
Sat: rest
Sun: 12.1 miles
Mon: rest

I've been diligent with my daily push ups and sit ups and I'm seeing a difference already. My weekday runs were pretty easy. If I'm anticipating a particularly stressful or long day, I like to run before work to clear my head and put me in a better, more relaxed mood. 

My long run on Sunday was just that- long. We took too long getting out of the house after eating breakfast, so my stomach was growling just 4 miles in. Clif Shot Bloks got me to mile 10, but then I started getting cramps in my side. On top of that, even before I started running, I felt a twinge in my leg (probably due to not stretching regularly). I ended up just running through the pain, since it just felt like a muscle giving me grief. My leg is sore, but no more than what I expected for running 12 miles. My pace was slower than I had hoped, but on the bright side, we got to enjoy this spectacular view. 

How was your week? Are you able to stick to your training plans? 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Inaugural Disneyland 10k Course Map

With about 30 days to go before the inaugural Disneyland 10k kicks off, runDisney has finally released the course map! I'll be running the 10k as the first part of the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge. 

This is the description of the 10k:

"Follow the path of the White Rabbit as he tries to catch up with Alice and the Mad Hatter when the InauguralDisneyland® 10K course picks up where the 5K course leaves off. This all-new event will take you into Cars Land at Disney California Adventure® Park and through Disneyland® Park before continuing on to the streets of Anaheim." 

To me, it sounded a bit like the course might start in the parks, but be primarily outside. And that it might also not include a run through the castle. While I still have the half marathon to get my castle picture, my brother will be running the 10k as his first runDisney race- and you can't miss an opportunity like that! 

Here's the official runDisney 10k course map- which includes the castle! 

This gets pretty wordy, so unless you want to visualize it with me, skip to the next map. :) 
The race starts on Disneyland Drive, presumably using the same start area as the half. The first two miles take you down Disneyland Drive, in front of the Anaheim Convention Center and back up Harbor Blvd. At this point you enter California Adventure. The course goes through Cars Land, around Paradise Bay, by Soarin', and down to Tower of Terror. Then it's into Disneyland. We head through Tomorrowland, by the Matterhorn and back to It's A Small World. The course goes backstage behind Small World and pops back out in Toontown. It's through Fantasyland, through the castle and into Frontierland. It's backstage again, possibly a service road, after Critter Country which leads back towards the Esplanade entrance to Downtown Disney. A quick trip through Downtown Disney and we're at the finish line by the Disneyland Hotel. 

My brother also mapped it out (a rough estimate) on google maps. This may give you a better idea of where different landmarks/shops are. 

Are you running the inaugural Disneyland 10k? 

Waivers Are Up! : Disneyland Half Marathon 2013

Waivers for the Disneyland Half Marathon 2013 are out and you can print yours now! They only include the bib number, so we'll still have to wait to see what corral we're in. 

The bib numbers seem to be different than last year and don't necessarily signify corral placement. I'm taking a guess here, so don't quote me on this:
1-19,999: Half only 
20,000s : Dumbo 
30,000: 10k only

Click here for the waiver or copy/paste this link:

Sunday, July 28, 2013

101 in 1001

A friend of mine and fellow blogger inspired me to do this challenge: 101 tasks to complete in 1001 days. It's much more feasible than trying to complete everything in one year and it gives you multiple seasons in case you missed something the first go around. These tasks can range from simple things, like making a meal from Pinterest, or they can be bigger, like traveling to Italy. But they must be specific.

I encourage you to make your own list as a way to challenge yourself on a daily basis. I know life has a way of living us, instead of us living life. Take back the reins! 

So without further ado, here is my list. I hope you'll follow along (I'll add it as a tab up top on my blog) and see how things go. :)

Start: July 28th, 2013
End: April 24th, 2016 (conveniently the day after my 29th birthday)

1. Read 15 new books
2. Get a massage
3. Visit a new museum
4. Donate my hair
5. Organize my craft area
6. Learn Italian (at least the basics)
7. Wear my hair down at least 10 times (This is huge for me. I can count on one hand how many times I have worn my hair down this year. Seriously.)
8. Submit a photograph to a contest
9. Donate blood
10. Purge my closet

Me & Dearest
11. Dress up and have a super fancy dinner out
12. Take a spontaneous weekend trip
13. Try a new sport together
14. Go on a date once per month
15. Try a new cuisine
16. Visit a new state
17. Take a cooking class together
18. Go wine tasting
19. Do something big for our 5th Anniversary

20. Run a half marathon in under 2:15
21. Take 10 minutes a day for 1 month to stretch
22. Run a full marathon
23. Learn new yoga poses
24. Run a 10k in under one hour
25. Run a race in costume
26. Stick to a training schedule for at least one month

27. Take a gondola ride with Dearest in Venice
28. Visit Victoria, Canada with Dearest
29. Take a "girls only" trip
30. Visit another Hawaiian Island
31. Wander for a day in a new city
32. Walk the Spanish Steps in Rome
33. Take a plane trip with just a book & ID (everything else in the checked bag)

34. Add a new item to my Etsy shop
35. Enlarge one of my photographs and frame it
36. Do an actual photo shoot 
37. Make another quilt
38. Update my photography portfolio
39. Take time to learn how to use my photo editing software
40. Buy a walking foot for my sewing machine and use it
41. Make another baby quilt as a gift

42. Try a recipe from Pinterest
43. Bake a cake from scratch and decorate it
44. Try a recipe with an ingredient I have never heard of before
45. Write down 10 new recipes to go in my box
46. Make macaroons
47. Find the perfect meatball recipe

48. Meet one of my blogger friends in person
49. Host a giveaway
50. Get more followers
51. Post every day for 2 weeks straight
52. Inspire someone else to write a 101 in 1001 post on their blog 

53. Create a handmade gift for every family member
54. Host our holiday dinner party
55. Make party favors for our dinner party
56. Make gingerbread cookies
57. Hang lights on the outside of the house
58. Host a cookie exchange party
59. Wear a ridiculous holiday outfit
60. Send out Christmas Cards

Planning for the Future
61. Create a savings plan for retirement
62. Do the research and decide what to invest in
63. Update my emergency car kit
64. Start saving for a future little one
65. Re-analyze our insurance plans
66. Buy Dearest a new car
67. Save for a house
68. Move to a bigger place

69. Take a vacation with friends
70. Go out for a girls-night
71. Host a murder mystery dinner party
72. Go berry picking
73. Send flowers to a friend out of the blue
74. Have a movie night
75. Host a holiday (non-Christmas) party

76. Visit 3 attractions at Disneyland that I haven't been on in the past 5 years (i.e. most of ToonTown, half of Fantasyland)
77. Get an annual pass again
78. Take a picture with a character I haven't taken one with before
79. Try a new meal
80. Go to Disney World
81. Eat/drink something at every "country" in Epcot
82. Take a picture in front of WDW's castle 

83. Meet Dearest's Grandma
84. Visit Dearest's out of town family again
85. Host a dinner for family

Fun Stuff
86. Hang up and display my race medals
87. Get flowers/a plant for the house at least once every other month
88. Pay for coffee for the person next in line
89. Paint at least one wall a color
90. Eat dessert for dinner
91. Host a poker tournament 
92. Organize my closet
93. Add at least 6 new colorful clothing items to my wardrobe
94. Get 2 new stamps in my passport 
95. Stop and smell the roses, literally

96. Give Dearest his college graduation letter (I started a card 5 yrs ago when he started school and write in it a couple times a year)
97. Send thank you cards to my family at random
98. Read my 10 yr letter to myself from when I was 18 (to be opened in two years) and write another
99. Write a card/letter to a deployed soldier

100. Put $10 in savings for every goal accomplished
101.Work on my next 101 in 1001

Friday, July 26, 2013

Foodie Friday: Teriyaki Stir Fry From Scratch

This teriyaki stir fry recipe is a staple in my house and we eat it almost once a week. It's simple and full of veggies. I make a vegetarian version with garbanzo beans/chick peas and tofu. (We're not vegetarians, but we only eat meat a couple times a week. It started a while ago as a way to cut down our food budget, but we've come to realize that we just don't need to have a chunk of meat with every meal.) The recipe can easily be made with chicken, just brown and cook the chicken before stir frying the veggies. 

Teriyaki Stir Fry

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup pineapple juice (from a can of pineapple bits)
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
1 tsp garlic, minced

1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water

14 oz garbanzo beans/chick peas
1/2 container of firm tofu, cut into bite size pieces
(or 1/2 lb chicken, cut into bite size pieces)

1 carrot, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 cups of broccoli florets (I forgot broccoli this time)
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup pineapple bits
1 sm can of water chestnuts

1/4 cup roasted peanuts
2-4 cups of steamed rice

Prepare the marinade. If you are using garbanzo beans, add them to the marinade and set aside. If you are using meat, prepare the marinade and set aside. Add 2 tbsp of soy sauce and 2 tbsp of cornstarch to the meat, mix and set aside. 

Chop and prepare all of your veggies. Heat oil in a pan over med heat. (If you are using meat, stir fry the meat first, then add the veggies.) If you are using garbanzo beans, add the veggies to the pan and cook.
Add the marinade and garbanzo beans. Simmer for ~10 minutes. Mix the cornstarch and water and add. Let the sauce thicken up a bit. 

Add the tofu, pineapple bits and water chestnuts. 

Top with peanuts and serve over rice. Enjoy! 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Travel Bags

I do a fair amount of short 2-4 day trips between holiday travel, visiting friends, weekend getaways, and of course, trips to Disneyland. As much as I can, I use a smaller duffel bag type of luggage. Personally, I'm not a fan of rolling suitcases unless it's a longer trip and I absolutely need the space. I find a duffel is less bulky, easier to travel with, and perfect as a carry on. Being as short as I am, I already to struggle to get my bag into the overhead compartment on an airplane. Much easier if my bag doesn't have wheels and a frame. ;)

My go-to travel bag, especially on plane trips, is a duffel bag. I can get about a weeks worth of clothes in there and the shoulder strap and handles make it easy to travel with. Plus it's the perfect carry on size. The large zippered opening is also super convenient if I'm not planning to unpack everything.

When I'm feeling a little more stylish and don't need to pack as much, I opt for a smaller bag. I have a bag in this same shape, but it's brown with pink and orange polka dots. It surprisingly holds a lot, but is harder to organize since everything gets stacked on top of each other. Mine doesn't have a long shoulder strap, so it's not such a great airplane bag.

I just got this Vera Bradley Weekender bag. (Thank you work appreciation points!) I know the quilted cotton look isn't for everyone, but I really like it! (I think it comes from loving to sew?) And it comes in tons of fun prints! It's a little bigger than my other bag of the same style and it *might* hold just as much as my go-to duffel. 
I did a quick test run for my upcoming Disneyland trip. I grabbed enough clothes for 4 days of hot weather, my running stuff, and my toiletries bag. (The bag with the fruit on it in the top left contains my undergarments. I prefer to contain everything in a bag just in case a TSA dude needs to rifle through my bag.)
It all fit! With my shoes! 
I love that it has a large zipper pocket on the outside. Great for my travel documents pouch and a book. 

Do you have a particular bag you like to travel with? 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Training Tuesday

Another week done already? Time just seems to be flying by, which is both good and bad. Good, since that means vacation and Disneyland are fast approaching. Bad because that also means I'll be running the Dumbo Double Dare and my training has been less than stellar. 

Weekly Recap
Tuesday: rest (early work morning)
Wednesday: 1.5 miles
Thursday: 2 miles
Friday: 2.5 miles
Saturday: rest (supposed to be 5 miles)
Sunday: 6 miles (supposed to be 10 miles)
Monday: rest

This week really threw me for a loop. On Wednesday's morning run, I felt like I pulled something (possibly my hamstring) and it's no one's fault but my own. I have not been stretching and this was my big wake up call. My knees have also not been happy, they sometimes get really ache-y and feel hot almost. I'm guessing just over use? 

I was also supposed to run back-to-back this weekend with 5 miles on Saturday and 10 on Sunday. Between work and life in general, I didn't run at all on Saturday. Instead of waking up super early for 10 miles on Sunday, Dearest and I slept in and went out for a sunny 6 miles later. It was so nice to sleep in, but I'm sure I'll regret it next week when my long run is supposed to be 12 miles. 

To give myself a little more motivation, I printed out a calendar and wrote down my training schedule. It also has a countdown with the days and weeks to go. My goal until Dumbo is to do sit ups and push ups each day, along with stretching. I'll mark an X through the day after I've completed everything. I did this same sort of thing when I did the 30 Day Shred in December. After seeing Xs across 10 days in a row, I just felt like I couldn't skip a day after getting so far. Hopefully that same visual will help me. :) 

How is your training going? Do you have any motivational tools that work for you? 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Foodie Friday: Scones

I enjoy baking a lot more than cooking (probably all the sweets!) and this scone recipe is one of my staples. You can change up the extras (like an orange and cranberry combo) to fit your tastes or for more variety. I make a batch of these lemon poppy seed scones for Dearest every week. 

1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 cup butter (cold)
1/2 an egg, beaten 

zest and juice of one lemon
1 & 1/2 tbsp poppy seeds

parchment paper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, mix the sour cream and the baking soda. Set aside. 

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cream of tartar.

Using a pastry cutter, cut in the cold butter. You could also throw all of it into a food processor. You're looking to get the butter into very small pieces without melting it. 

Back to the sour cream- it's hard to see, but the baking soda gave the sour cream a fluffy/airy sort of texture. Baking is a science, right?  

Zest and juice your lemon. Measure out 2 tbsp of poppy seeds and add them to the flour mix. 

Crack and egg and beat it. Then add half of it to the flour (I eyeball it). Add the sour cream to the flour as well. You should have your flour, sour cream, egg and "flavors" (lemon and poppy seeds) in one bowl at this point.

Using a spoon, mix until all the flour is wet. It can take a bit of work as the dough will get pretty sticky. I use the back of the spoon to sort of smash the dough along the sides of the bowl to get all the flour. 

On a piece of parchment paper or straight on your counter (I use parchment paper for easy clean up later), sprinkle some flour. Put half the dough on the floured surface and form a ball. 

Flatten the ball out until you have a circle about 1" tall. 

Using a knife or cookie cutter, cut your scones and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. I lightly stamped my scones with a heart shaped cookie cutter for some decoration. Place them in the preheated oven and bake for ~17 minutes or until bottoms are lightly golden.


Thursday, July 18, 2013

ABCs of Me

This has been going around the blog-o-sphere and since I was personally tagged by Karen at Losing the Glass Slippers, here are the ABCs of me. 

A. Attached or Single?
Attached to this guy. :) 

B. Best Friend?
I have a few, these ladies included. 

C. Cake or Pie?
Pie! Especially chocolate cream pie... Mmmm.... 

D. Day of choice? 
Sundays- my guaranteed day off and long run day. 

E. Essential item?
My phone. I'd be lost without it. No really, I rely on Google maps all the time! 

F. Favorite color?
Pink? Or yellow? If you looked in my closet, you would think it was black. I'm working on fixing that. ;)

G. Gummy bears or worms?

H. Hometown?
San Francisco. Although I wasn't born there, I moved to SF before I was one and grew up there, so I consider it my hometown. 

I. Favorite indulgence? 
Anything (and everything) in the dessert cases at Whole Foods. 

J. January or July?
July! January just means rain, no more Christmas, and sticking to New Years' resolutions.

K. Kids?
None yet. 

L. Life isn't complete without?
Laughter. And funny moments like this. Yup, that's icing all over my face. lol. 

M. Marriage date?
June 12th, 2010. 

N. Number of brothers/sisters?
Just one brother. Also a Disney addict like me. :)

O. Oranges or apples?
Mini oranges aka Cuties. 

P. Phobias?
Spiders. Ugh.

Q. Quotes?
"C'est la vie!"  

R. Reasons to smile?
I'm happy, healthy, and have loving people in my life. What more could I ask for? :) 

S. Season of choice?
Christmas! Yes, it may be one day, but in our house, it's a season. 

T. Tag 5 people. 
If you haven't done this yet, I'm tagging you! 

U. Unknown fact about me?
I didn't have a real live Christmas Tree until I was 20. :O My husband was horrified when he found out. We've had a real tree ever since. 

V. Vegetable?
Artichokes! Or lettuce. I'm a big fan of salads. 

W. Worst habit?
Not flossing. I feel guilty every time I go to the dentist. But apparently not guilty enough to floss regularly. Haha.

X. Xray or ultrasound?
I've only had an ultrasound before. 

Y. Your favorite food?

Z. Zodiac?