runDisney Half Marathon 2016 Race Recap

Saturday morning, my alarm went off at 1:45. I had only gotten about two and a half hours of sleep, and I knew I would pay for it later. But, it was time to run a half marathon!

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I stumbled around the hotel room, thankful I had laid out my costume the night before, and started getting ready. My amazing tutu came from this great Etsy shop. She does tons of Disney characters, so be sure to check her out for your next runDisney race! (You can also follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.) I knew just where to find the best shirt to complete my outfit, Raw Threads. They always have a great booth at the runDisney expos as well. I ran in my new ASICS Meta Run shoes, they are so comfortable and the black goes with any costume.

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We were running a little behind, but thankfully Hilton Bonnet Creek had multiple buses to take people to the start, and we had plenty of time to grab some food and get onboard. Once at Epcot, we realized we were really early and still had a lot of time to kill, so we got in line for a character picture, which we usually never have time to do.

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Daisy told me Donald was getting ready for the race, but he wished us good luck.

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We used the bathrooms, and then headed to the corrals as soon as they opened. We made it to the front of F, and took a seat on the ground to wait. It was truly amazing watching all the people try to sneak into the wrong corral. I mean dozens and dozens of people. Those volunteers have a TOUGH job. People were trying to hide their bib under a sweatshirt, put their finger over part of the letter to make it look like a different one, begging and pleading because their best friend wanted to run with them, you name it. I am glad we had tough volunteers who didn’t let anyone in that wasn’t supposed to be there!

Before long, it was our turn to be at the starting line. Since we were in the front, they kept pushing us up closer and closer to the start line…and then I got a text saying I had started the race (I was tracking myself). NO! I had NOT started the race, they had made us squish up so close to the line that the official tracker started! It wasn’t until about a minute later that we were sent off, so it was a bit frustrating starting the race already losing 60 seconds!

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The first few miles were pretty uneventful. It was cool but not freezing, but SO FOGGY and very very humid. I soon started sweating pretty badly, and made a stop at a medic tent for some body glide. We kept a steady pace, and made it to the Magic Kingdom sign.

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After a couple more miles, we went through the TTC, and then the Magic Kingdom was in sight. I was stoked that the still had the icicle lights on, because I had not yet seen them this year, or the year before actually, so I was really happy to run down Main street towards the gorgeous castle. Bobby snapped the below picture of me and I love it. I think it really captures all the feels of running down Main Street!

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The crowds were great as usual, and I heard a couple of people shout my name and I waved in the general direction of the noise, so if you were yelling to me and I didn’t see you, I’m sorry, but I did hear you!

I knew I wanted to stop and get a pic in front of the castle. It was so foggy it barely came out though, but I think the castle looks kind of cool.

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I had told Bobby before the race that I didn’t care how long the line for the Queen of Hearts was, that if she was out, I wanted a picture. We saw her just past the carousel in Fantasyland, and even though the line was about 13 deep, we stopped anyway.

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We made it to the back of the castle, and had to stop for a shot of these guys. Imagine how long the line would be if they were on the ground! I also wanted to get a shot of Bobby by the castle but it didn’t come out too well.

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We sadly came out of the Magic Kingdom, knowing the most fun part of the race was over. We wound around by the Grand Floridian and Wedding pavilion, and I was thankful the road opened back up again. At about mile nine my lack of training started to get to me, and I was mentally done. Once we hit mile 10, we started counting down saying things like “it’s just a 5k left”, and that seemed to help.

We made it to the turn that kills my IT band every time, and Bobby wanted a picture with our green army man friend.

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Once we were on this new road headed to EPCOT, I knew we were getting close and didn’t even want to stop for water, I was just ready to be done. It was also about this time I told Bobby I was SO GLAD we weren’t doing Dopey again this time! I may have cried if I had to run a full the next day.

We made it up the last bridge, and down into EPCOT where I saw my favorite sign….”run like Steve Harvey is trying to give your medal to Miss Colombia”. I died yall, love it.

We made it around the EPCOT ball, and were finally in the home stretch! This last part is always hard because I get excited I’m “so close”, but really have more to run that I think, and I try to kick harder way too soon and I die out. Whoops. I heard the choir singing, and knew we were REALLY close.

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Wwweeee! Finsih line in view! We made it!

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Our official time was 2:25:07. Not bad with the stops, humidity, the timer starting before we were running, and (totally my fault..) lack of training. I still have a long way to go, but the goal for this one was to enjoy it and have fun, and I’m glad we didn’t take it too seriously.

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I got to cheer runners on as they approached the finish which is one of my favorite things to do ever. I also had a little chat with Mr. Galloway, and got to see part of my favorite announcer team.

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All in all a successful race and a successful day. We got a lift back to the resort from a friend, and showered and our car arrived to take us to the cruise…where we promptly fell asleep in the back seat! (See, I told you it would catch up to me!) Another great runDisney race weekend was over, another shiny medal to add to my collection, and many many more memories to hold on to forever.

QOTD: Has humidity every changed your race goals? Favorite costume you saw from marathon weekend?

Marathon Weekends at Hilton Bonnet Creek

I had the privilege to stay somewhere new the night before the runDisney half marathon, somewhere I honestly never thought I would stay. I am a Disney loving “stay at a Disney hotel” kind of girl, so I was a little reluctant to try out Hilton Bonnet Creek, but I am So glad I did!

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I hope to have more info for you on the actual hotel and all the activities and food and things there at the end of February, but for now I want to specifically talk to you about Marathon Weekends.

Hilton Bonnet Creek has put together a special rate for those staying for runDisney race weekends, and it comes with some great extras that are not offered at Disney owned hotels. There was also a runner’s concierge in the lobby, and they could answer questions for us, get us signed up for the bus the morning of the race, and they also had a goodie bag for us. (Note that to ride the bus to the races you have to sign up ahead of time and are given a wristband as a “ticket” for the bus to and from the race.)

Hilton Bonnet Creek is actually inside the gates of Walt Disney World, so it is super close to the parks and other Disney activities. Check out the balloon at Disney Springs you could see out my room’s window!

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Those staying with the special marathon weekend rate are also given a card that saves you 10% on hotel food and beverages during your stay. They have so many restaurant options, and even special carb loading menu items for runners.

The real magic however came on race morning, where we were greeted in the lobby with signs and our own personal cheerleaders! The music was loud, the DJ was getting everyone pumped up, and it really helped to wake me up since it was, you know, 2:45 in the morning.

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They also provided a continental breakfast for the runners. It was nice to hang out in the warmth of the lobby, chatting with other runners (and using real bathrooms!) before heading to the race start.

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I ate a protein bar, a banana, and grabbed some water. (I had brought some food with me also since I wasn’t sure what I was going to feel like eating). I was told that the reasoning behind the certain food items was that they wanted to provide things that would be easy to eat in the corrals or walking to the corrals. Smart thinking!

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We took some photos out in front of the bus and were cheered on as we boarded. It was EARLY, yall, so it was such a nice touch!

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Oh, something else I didn’t mention, all runners staying for Marathon Weekends get a late 2:00 pm checkout, how cool is that?

Please note that at this time, there is no official transportation to the 5k and 10k races or expo which was a bummer, but the runner’s concierge can help you set something up if you would like. We grabbed a cab to come back from the expo and it was quick and easy. There is also  Mears shuttle you can take to and from the airport that cost approx. $21 each way when booked online.

They also had a runners reception at the pool with rum runners at noon after the half marathon, but sadly we had a boat to catch and were not able to stay. Next time!

I give Hilton Bonnet Creek Marathon Weekends a thumbs up, and would definitely stay here again for a race weekend!

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The enthusiasm, the little touches, the breakfast, and the proximity to other Disney activities really swayed me. I think they have a good thing going here, and I sadly just learned about it last year! If you have any questions about marathon weekends, let me know and I can get the answer for you.

QOTD: Did you know this existed? What do you think about the early morning cheerleaders? Who wants to stay here now?!?

Disclosure: I was provided a free stay to check out marathon weekends for myself, however all opinions are my own.

Marathon Weekend Cigna Blogger Event

I mentioned yesterday in my expo recap, that I had a very bust 24 hours in Orlando. As soon as we landed in Florida and hopped a shuttle to our resort, I hoped in Megan’s car and we headed to EPCOT for the Cigna blogger event. For those that don’t know, Cigna is the title sponsor of the runDisney marathon weekend! We were tight on time, and of course ended up having to park the furthest out in the parking lot.

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Cigna had asked me to interview a couple of TV stars from Mexico right before the event, so Megan came with me to meet up with them (more on that interview later, it gets its own post!) We had time for one quick photo before running over to the meet up.

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We booked it over to the Odyssey building, and they had the doors roped off, so naturally I jumped over them and tried to go inside, where I was immediately yelled at by a lady with a light saber saying this was a private event. Once we gave her our names and tried to explain we were supposed to be AT the event but were late, she finally let us in.

The super sweet Cigna people helped us get lunch (everyone else had already eaten) and found us seats so we could eat and join in the fun.

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Basically each table was a team, and through various games, each team got coins for getting correct answers (all related to health and fitness of course!) I scarfed down my food and watched at first, but it looked like my team was already doing great!

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The games were all super creative. I mean, check out the concentration I used during this one.

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Our hosts did an excellent job as well.

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One game involved holding the tree pose as long as we could, and you all should already know how unsuccessful my yoga practice has been, I think my face says it all.

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I really can’t remember what was going on in this one, but it appears I am having fun! (Dancing? telling on someone cheating? who knows!)cigna4

In all honesty, not only was the event super fun but it was really informative. I sadly didn’t get all my questions right, but learned a lot! For instance, did you know that 25% of adults with diabetes don’t know they have it? Or 65% (!) of adults are overweight or obese, but only 18% realize it and are trying to lose weight? Crazy stuff yall.

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Our team didn’t end up winning, but we had a blast, and that’s what counts, right? (Or that’s what I told myself as I cried in the corner. I kid).

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After the event, we got to meet and take photos with two very important folks, Minnie and Mickey! They loved our ASICS Gel Quantums!

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Cigna put on a great event (and even gave us sweet swag bags at the end!) and I was thankful to be a part of it. I am going to leave you with this info graphic they created about training for a race. Enjoy!

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Be sure to follow #CignaRunTogether to check out other posts from the event, and follow Cigna on Twitter.

QOTD: Best running tip you have even gotten?

runDisney Marathon Weekend Expo 2016

Hello friends! I am finally back home! I still have a lot of unpacking and catching up to do, but I wanted to let you guys know I am still alive, and I have a lot of fun recaps coming your way, plus a giveaway so hang in there. Today I thought I would tell you about the race expo, then I still have to recap the blogger meet up, an interview I did with some famous TV stars from Mexico, the race, the cool hotel experience I had, and of course the cruise!

We were actually only in Orlando for 24 hours, but a LOT happened in those hours. First after landing Friday I ran over to the Cigna blogger meet up with Megan, and then we went to the runDisney expo to get our packets for the half the next day. We had dinner at California Grill at 5:00 so sadly I didn’t get to spend near as much time at the expo as I would have liked, but I still got to soak up the runDisney magic and see some friends.

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First we picked up our race packets. It was weird “only” doing the half, since last time we participated in marathon weekend we ran dopey!

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Ready to run! or something like that (wait, we have to run? I haven’t really trained!)

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LOVE my new rundisney ears! They don’t give me terrible headaches like the ones from the parks. Maybe I just have a large noggin?

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We of course had to take the obligatory instagram photo before heading over to check out the merchandise. The guy asked how we wanted to pose and we said “something funny” and he just looked at us like we were crazy. No worries! We shall come up with something on our own!

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Hello expo floor, oh how I have missed you!

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A closer look at the shoes, and I dig them.

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I made my way to the Raw Threads booth (adorable stuff yall, go check them out!) and had a quick chat with my buddy Bobbi! Was great to see her again.

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I also ran over to my favorite running skirts brand and said hello to my former colleague and the sweetest girl in Minnie ears ever, Michelle!

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We literally flew through the official merchandise, I got an I did it shirt (I always get one) and a shirt for Emma Kate that says “future runner, catch me if you can” SO stinkin cute). and unfortunately we had to grab a cab back to the hotel so we could change for dinner.

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I wish I had gotten to spend some more time shopping and saying hello to other friends working expo booths, but there will always be other races, and hopefully for those I will be in town more than 24 hours!

QOTD: Is there an item you buy at every race expo?

runDisney Marathon Weekend 2016 Facts

Hey guys! I fly out to Disney TOMORROW for the runDisney marathon weekend! Bags are packed, house sitters at the ready, waivers printed. This one is weird for me because I am just running the half marathon. Last time I was in Disney for marathon weekend, I ran all the races…AKA the Dopey Challenge, so it’s odd to me that when I arrive Friday half the events will already be over! None the less, I am excited to get to take part at all in the weekend that started it all for me as far as distance running goes.

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Anyway, I wanted to share some fun facts with you all so you can follow along with the fun for the race weekend! I will be posting photos on my social channels and I am hoping to sneak in a periscope or two if I remember. (@heathersLG) Also, I will be attending a blogger event with Cigna, the title sponsor for the race, on Friday around lunch time, so be on the lookout! I will be live posting there as well. Also, I will be doing my costume reveal on social media Friday night. So much fun coming up!

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I am a numbers geek (aren’t most runners?) and love seeing all the “stats” on marathon weekend. How cool is it that there are more female runners than male, and check out all the countries represented! Crazy to think for the inaugural Dopey in 2014 I was one of those nutty 7,500 who were attempting something never done before in runDisney history!

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Also of noteworthy news are some of the cool people that will be attending this years event. One very important one being U.S. retired Master Sergeant Cedric King, a decorated war hero who lost both legs during combat while serving in the U.S. Army in Afghanistan. He has earned both the purple heart and bronze star, and will be running the MARATHON! Cigna CEO David Cordani is running too, in addition to Olympian Paula Radcliffe (5k, 10k, and half), and actors Uzo Aduba, Aaron Diaz, and Laura Flores (5k).

The fun starts THIS MORNING with the 5k, and the 10k will ne tomorrow, with the half and full being run on Saturday and Sunday respectively.

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Also something really cool going on tomorrow is that runDisney is hosting a “state of the sport” forum and race director series. Check out the press release for more info. it sounds like it’s going to be really awesome!

“…Nearly 100 of the most highly-respected names in the global running sector – major race directors, media executives, industry influencers and former Olympic runners – are expected to attend the Jan. 7 forum, making it perhaps the most significant gathering of running industry leaders ever assembled.

The event, staged at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, is being anchored by a panel discussion featuring race directors and executives from the world’s top running events – Peter Ciaccia (TCS New York City Marathon), Tom Grilk (B.A. A. Boston Marathon), Tad Hayano (Tokyo Marathon), Hugh Brasher (Virgin Money London Marathon), Carey Pinkowski (Bank of America Chicago Marathon) and Juergen Lock (BMW Berlin Marathon). The panel, moderated by Runner’s World editor-in-chief David Willey, is expected to tackle several key industry topics, such as the evolving demographics of runners, the impact of the upcoming Olympics, increasing runner participation and other best practices.

Additional speakers expected are Running USA CEO Rich Harshbarger, B.A.A Boston Marathon race director David McGillivray and Maribeth Bisienere, senior vice president of Disney Springs and ESPN Wide World of Sports. Other special guests will be reigning women’s world marathon record-holder and four-time Olympic distance runner Paula Radcliffe and former Olympian and runDisney training consultant Jeff Galloway.

The State of the Sport forum kicks off runDisney’s new Race Director Series, which affords race directors from around the country with behind-the-scenes experiences during the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. More than 40 race directors and race management personnel are expected to take part in the series that gives them special access and insight into various aspects of the four-day event operation, plus the Race Director Challenge, a light-hearted competition duringSaturday’s Disney Half Marathon race.

The State of the Sport forum aligns with runDisney’s goal of broadening participation in road running and encouraging people to live a healthier and more active lifestyle. Next year, Walt Disney World Resort will once again become the center of the running universe when it hosts the 2017 Running USA Industry Conference during the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The annual conference brings together industry experts for sessions on best practices, panel discussions, industry awards and more.

Hosting the 2017 conference and this weekend’s forum build on runDisney’s growing stature as one of the leading running series in the world. In the last few years, runDisney has experienced extraordinary growth and popularity with the launch of four new race weekends – including its first international event, the 2016 Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Weekend – and frequent race sellouts at events at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California.”

Thoughts? How cool to have so many well known race directors in one place!

Good luck to all the runners out there running any of the distances, especially to the first timers. runDisney is such a special place for a first race, and for that reason marathon weekend will always hold a special place in my heart as my first half marathon back in 2010. Above all else, have FUN, you are running in the happiest place on earth, so celebrate fun, friends, health, and life!

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QOTD: If you could run with any celebrity, who would it be?

New runDisney Costume Guidelines

Good morning friends! Ok, so today’s post is one a lot of my runDisney friends have been waiting on even since Disney decided to make some hard and fast rules about costumes in the parks. Well, to be fair, some of the rules were always there but not really enforced as they will be now. Honestly, I saw this coming and none of it surprises me and I think they are fair rules. runDisney costumes are very popular, and some people are SO creative, but there have been new guidelines set.

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So, if you are going down to Orlando for marathon weekend like I am or if you are heading out to Cali soon for Star Wars, please keep the new rules in mind when planning your costume. It’s for your safety and the safety of the runners around you. (seriously, no one wants to trip over your Jedi robe at mile 12 of a half marathon. ‘Aint nobody got time for that.) Honestly, I feel like when race costumes became all the rage, it was (and still is) a lot of fun, but now people are trying to one-up the “regular” characters and be creative which is totally cool, but it can sometimes come at the expense of your (or others around you) safety, which is most important!

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The first set of rules are ones that I am pretty sure have always been in place. Here are the highlights:

No sharp objects, weapons, signing autographs posing as a character, and must be family friendly. Kids 13 and under can wear a mask as long as it doesn’t cover your whole face and your eyes are visible.

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Next are the REALLY new rules, and I shall paraphrase for you:

No layered costumes that could possibly conceal a weapon (like a Jedi robe), no big props that surround the body (like the house from UP) may be worn, you can’t wear a dress that reaches or drags the ground (but seriously, wwhhyyy would you want to do that anyway? It’s hot. It’s hard to run in a full length dress…but I digress.) Capes must be no longer than waist length, Themed shirts, sweatshirts, and hats are fine, wings, toy swords, light sabers, and tutus are fine (whew). NO MASKS OF ANY KIND.

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Also note that you can’t wear your costume into the park after your race, so bring a change of clothes if you plan to stay (but really, please go back to your room and shower, mmmkk?)

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Please remember, that there is a bag check/security screening upon entering the race staging area. Also, selfie sticks, strollers, walkers, crutches, scooters are not allowed. In other words, use common sense and you should be A-Ok.

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I know these are last minute in light of marathon weekend and I am sure that can be frustrating for those who have already created a stellar costume and I hate that for you, but it is better to know now than to get pulled off the race course, right? I’m sure everyone can still come up with really creative costumes within the parameters!

If you have a question, it’s better to be safe than sorry…or pulled off the race course. Please contact runDisney@disneysports.com no alter than 90 days in advance of a race.

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If you want to read the full post from the mouse himself, click here.

QOTD: If you could dress up as any character for a race, it would be____________.

2015 in Review

Whew! 2015 was quite a big year for our little family. It definitely looked different than most of 2014 since we have little Emma Kate now, but there was still plenty of adventure and fun!

In January I ran my first post baby half marathon, my favorite hometown race: Rock ‘n Roll New Orleans. It wasn’t pretty, but it gave me confidence that I could run long distances again, even right at four months post baby!

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February brought a Walt Disney World vacation, and running the Princess half marathon with my partner in crime, Jen. We had a blast with our costumes, and it was great to be back in my favorite place after a year absence.

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March was also a milestone month. I hopped a plane to California to run the LA marathon with ASICS. It was an AMAZING once in a lifetime experience that was filled with fun, sweat, tears, and jaw dropping introductions. I felt so so blessed walking around all weekend. The race was very hot and so, so hard, but I felt extremely accomplished after and learned I can do hard things.

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April brought Emma Kate’s first Easter, and our annual Easter race: The Crescent City Classic 10k. It was a rainy gloomy, cold day, but I love running in New Orleans and seeing blogger friends, so it made it worthwhile!

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May brought me back to Walt Disney World for the final Expedition Everest Challenge. I am so glad I got to participate in this race once before it went away!

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May was also special because it was my first Mother’s Day, and we dedicated baby Emma Kate at church.

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June was pretty low key, except for when Bobby threw me a surprise 30th birthday party.

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July brought Bobby’s annual conference in Destin Florida, and my parents tagged along to keep me company while Bobby was at his sessions.

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In August, Bobby and I made a purchase, a BIG purchase. We bought the local Orange Leaf frozen yogurt shop! This involved a lot of stress and a trip to Oklahoma for training, but things are going smoothly now.

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In September, Emma Kate turned ONE! We had a fun Minnie Mouse themed party at our house.

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In October, my mom decided she wanted to go to Walt Disney World for her 60th birthday, so that’s exactly what we did! I surprised her by booking club level at the Polynesian for a few days, and also with a cake and a fireworks cruise. We had a blast!

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I also had the privilege of speaking at the Refresh Summit in Nashville at the end of October. I was sick the whole time but am still so glad I got to go share with the lovely women who attended. I was also asked to be an ASICS ambassador in October, such a great opportunity!

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November brought cooler weather, tubes in EK’s ears, and Thanksgiving. My parents and sister came into town, and we also got to see some of Bobby’s family. Poor Emma Kate was sick that weekend, and ended up getting a mild case of hand foot and mouth.

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December of course brought the busyness of Christmas, and it went by in the blink of an eye. We went to my parents house for a few days, and it was great to just have a low key holiday.

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There are a lot of other things that happened in 2015, but this post is getting really long, so I will stop with what I have. There were a lot of uncertainties in 2015, and I can happily say a lot of them have resolved, but we still have some things up in the air I really can’t share right now. It’s so much fun to look back on the year and see the accumulation of all of the things that went on. It makes me smile. I hope you do as well when you look back on your 2015!

As always, thanks for hanging around and sticking with me here at THLG. I appreciate you all. Cheers to 2016!

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QOTD: What was your favorite thing you did in 2015?

5 Reasons to Take a Racecation

I have taken many racecations over the past few years. I know in a lot of people’s vocabulary, the words “vacation” and “running’ just don’t mix, but hear me out, it can be a LOT of fun!

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1.) See new places: With the popularity of racing, you can now find races pretty much anywhere. You can even sail on the Disney Cruise Line and run a 5k on Disney’s private island in the Bahamas! There are websites like Running in the USA that can help you find races in every state. It’s fun to sign up for a race and then find fun activities to do afterwards with your family!

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2.) Hang out with other runners: Most races have an expo, so it’s a lot of fun to hang out with other like minded people at the expo and get excited about the race with other participants. I love having meet ups and tweet ups to meet up with other online friends as well.

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3.) Keep weight in check: Everyone always jokes about gaining weight on vacation, but you are more likely to keep things in check in the days leading up to your race, and then of course you will burn calories actually running, so there’s another bright side, no dreaded post vacation bloat!

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4.) Run in different climate/elevation: Running here in Mississippi can be pretty monotonous. It’s not particularly pretty, and it’s fairly flat most of the time. I love having the experience of running in low humidity on a beautiful course, something I could never get from a local race!IMG_3572 (2)

5.) Bond with your family: A lot of races have made things a family event. runDisney has kids races and a family fun run 5k, and the Rock n Roll series often offers 5k races with their half and full marathon weekends as well. These make a great opportunity to involve the whole family in being active, as well as teaching kids healthy habits. Or if they just prefer to spectate, you can work together on some really fun signs to hold up on the race course, or go sightseeing post race.

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QOTD: What is your favorite thing about a racecation? What is your favorite racecation location?

10 Confessions

 

Confession: I have eaten way more frozen yogurt in the past two weeks than any one person should eat.

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But it’s blackberry greek with fruit, nuts, and granola!

Confession: I tend to over commit and then can’t do my best work because I am rushed.

Confession: I watched all the seasons of Nashville in a span of a month.

Confession: I have gotten jealous of people getting to run so many fun destination races that I have been missing out on.

runDisney star wars

Did you see the new runDisney announcement yesterday here on THLG?

Confession: I made a new year’s resolution to walk my dog more, and I am not doing so great with it (it’s SO HOT outside!)

Confession: I am in denial that my little baby will be one in less than a month

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Confession: In the past two weeks we have eaten out and eaten frozen dinners on most nights.

Confession: I let my baby do things I swore I would never allow before I had kids.

Confession: I’m still obsessed with Taylor Swift’s 1989 album. Did I really just type that?

Confession: I have an alert on my phone for when The Walking Dead comes back on for the fall. (Thoughts on the companion series?)

QOTD: Ok, spill it. Give me a confession!

runDisney Star Wars Race Comes to Walt Disney World!

Yes, you read that right! After hearing some buzzing and rumors for awhile, the newest runDisney race has been officially announced! a runDisney Stars Wars race comes to Walt Disney World!

runDisney star wars

The weekend of April 14-17th, may the force be with you as you run through Walt Disney World meeting some of your favorite characters along the way. The theme for this race weekend is “the dark side”, with the Disneyland race being called “the light side”. There will be kids races, a 5k, 10k, half marathon, and of course a challenge! The course sounds awesome, taking runners through EPCOT, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and ending at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.

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More information can be found in the official press release:

April 14-17 event in Florida joins Star Wars-themed race at Disneyland Resort and features new Kessel Run Challenge and Dark Side Challenge

 

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL (Aug. 25, 2015) – runDisney is summoning the Force today to announce another Star Wars-inspired intergalactic journey, this time to the dark side.

The “Star Wars Half Marathon – the Dark Side” enters the galaxy April 14-17, 2016, at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and pays homage to the dark side forces of the Star Wars universe. This new race follows the debut of the popular Star Wars-themed race at Disneyland Resort, which will return in January as the “Star Wars Half Marathon – the Light Side”.

“Ever since we launched the Star Wars race at Disneyland Resort, runners have been clamoring for more, so we’re thrilled to bring the Star Wars franchise together with the runDisney brand to Walt Disney World Resort,’’ said Maribeth Bisienere, senior vice president of Disney Sports Enterprises. “If the inaugural Star Wars race at Disneyland Resort is any indication, this new running adventure to the dark side is sure to be the out-of-this-world experience that runners have come to expect at runDisney events.’’

The new Star Wars race at Walt Disney World Resort will be a journey of personal achievement all its own, involving kids’ races, a 5K and a 10K in addition to the half marathon, plus a variety of Star Wars experiences, medals, events and merchandise inspired by a galaxy far, far away. Among its many features will be a unique 13.1-mile course that propels runners through Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios and finishes at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. There will also be a Star Wars Dark Side Challenge — running the 10K and the half marathon on consecutive days – that offers each finisher a Death Star-themed medal.

Jedi and Sith Lords who dare to experience both Star Wars races will have the chance to take on the Kessel Run Challenge — completing the Star Wars half marathon missions on both coasts. Kessel Run Challenge runners can earn a commemorative “Coast to Coast” medal inspired by the Millennium Falcon starship. Race registration opens Sept. 22 at www.runDisney.com.

 

The addition of this second Star Wars race continues the recent wave of significant growth and popularity of runDisney events domestically and internationally. This is the second new runDisney race announced for 2016, joining the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Weekend (Sept. 23-25 at Disneyland Paris), and the fourth addition to the runDisney series in the last two years (Star Wars Half Marathon at Disneyland Jan. 2015 and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend Nov. 2014).

Each year more than 200,000 runners sign up for runDisney events, which often sell out in record time.

“We are committed to creating extraordinary experiences and events that appeal to runners of all ages and attract even more fans of our various brands and franchises to the sport of running, creating opportunities for them to live a healthier and more active lifestyle,’’ said Bisienere.

 

QOTD: Do you plan to try to run this new race?