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 Princess Half Runner Meet and Greet

Since I posted a photo on Instagram about some tips for the runDisney Princess half marathon yesterday, I have had several people ask me if I would be hosting a meet up like I have done before.

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The thought has crossed my mind but honestly, I have been so busy with the baby and work that I haven’t had time to put much thought into it. I know that not only is it a race, but a lot of people’s vacation, so taking time out to go to a meet up can be hard, so I am actually planning on two things, hoping to get to meet some of you! You can of course come to both, but I wanted to give a couple of options where you can meet some other bloggers or just other runDisney lovers and we can chat, take some photos and get excited about the race! I may have a couple of giveaways at the meet up as well. Smile

Here is what I am thinking:

Saturday, February 21st

Downtown Disney, outside of Ghirardelli Ice Cream 6:15ish.

I figure this is a good spot since there is no park ticket required, and it’s early enough that you can still get to sleep early for the half the next day. Besides, who doesn’t love a little pre race ice cream? Delicious! I will wait outside until 6:30 to give everyone a chance to get there, then we can head in and get some pre race fuel.

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Karen and I getting ice cream in 2009. We look so young! She will be at the meet up, too!

Sunday, February 22nd

Pre race 4:15/4:30 am, outside of the Race Retreat tent

I will be there at 4:00 (hopefully haha) to take a team runDisney photo with my friends from the Facebook group, and I will be hanging around afterwards in the area in front of the race retreat tent until time to go to the corrals. I would love to see everyone’s costumes before the race and say good luck to some new friends!

If you have always wanted to meet some like minded runners and Disney fans, this could be a great way to get to know some folks in a small, non intimidating setting. (If you are nervous you can stand back and watch and see that I don’t bite, then come join the fun when you are ready!)

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Also I will be at the expo Friday afternoon (not sure on exact time) if anyone wants to meet up for a quick hi! I will be posting to Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook during the week so I will post when I get to the expo and the other meet ups!

QOTD: Have you ever been to a meet up with other bloggers or runners? How did it go?

Meet Ups and Shoe Boxes

This past weekend, runDisney did something new and really exciting. They held their very FIRST meet up on the road! You may have seen this hashtag all over: #OnTheRoadToDisneyParks

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The first stop was Atlanta, and a bunch of Disney fans were invited for some fun. I didn’t try to get into this one, as it was too close to Wine and Dine weekend and I couldn’t travel yet again! This one sounded great though, and It involved running through Turner Field, breakfast, and hearing from some of our favorite runDisney people like Jeff Galloway and Tara Gidus.

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Not to mention, a visit from Minnie and Mickey!

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Everyone that I spoke to that got to go had a great time, and everyone is itching to see where the next meet up will be. Maybe it will be in your city? Ok, so this looks like fun…how do I join? For this particular meet up, runDisney hinted about a special surprise that was going to be posted on the Disney Parks Blog. This surprise was indeed info on the meet up, and everyone interested had to quickly send an email to a certain address, on a first come basis. It’s that simple!

So, be sure you are following runDisney on Twitter and keep an eye out on the Disney Parks Blog to see where the road takes them next.

*Photos provided to me by Disney Sports

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This week is national collection week for Operation Christmas Child. I have been packing shoeboxes for underprivileged children around the world since I was in third grade, so it holds a very special place in my heart. It’s such a simple and inexpensive way to show love and the joy of Christmas to children who may otherwise never unwrap a gift, ever.

It’s a fun activity to do as a group, or with your children, and I hope you will consider packing one and dropping it off this week at the nearest collection spot to you. For information on how to pack your box, see this link.

Any Duck Dynasty fans? You will love this:

 

Have a great day! Go pack a shoebox!

QOTD: Have you ever packed a shoebox for OCC? Where would you like to see runDisney go for the next meet up?

runDisney Wine and Dine Half Meet Up 2013

Last Thursday, I participated in the runDisney Wine and Dine half marathon meet up.

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This was a special meet up, because it was the first one being held at night! We checked in at the front of Epcot and were given very comfy shirts that matched the Wine and Dine theme.

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We aren’t too good at selfies.

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We were given a park ticket for that night, as well as a fastpass for Test Track. We headed over immediately, then met up with Jen.

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Soon after I got a text from Kelly who had arrived with Kristin, who I was so excited to meet. It was wonderful to see Kelly again as well, too!

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We headed over to a special viewing area reserved just for meet up attendees to view Illuminations.

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Me and Linzie.

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I was also excited to see Julie again, and finally meet Sara. We chatted about how much we missed our dogs, and I knew they would understand.

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After the fireworks, we were brought over to the American Adventure pavilion where were were served what else…food and wine!

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After some eating and mingling, it was time for the presentation to begin. Darrell Fry, sports media director, opened the show. We had no idea who was coming to speak and what information we would be given. Things were kicked off by Faron Kelley who gave away some raffle items like runDisney duffle bags and race entries!

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Next Jeff Galloway and nutritionist Tara Gidus took the stage to talk a bit about race day strategies and nutrition. They just gave a little bit of info and encouraged us to come hear them speak at the expo to learn more. One key thing they DID say however was to hydrate hydrate hydrate!

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We also got to hear from a couple of chefs who work at Disney who told us a little about some of the new food offerings and booths at the food and wine festival. We were also told about wine, and how one glass of red wine a day and two for men can have health benefits. Just what we needed to hear. Hehe.

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The next guest was very exciting. We got to hear from Ali about the new 2014 runDisney and New Balance limited edition shoe! We didn’t actually get to see the show, but they showed us a short video and told us that the whole shoe buying “experience” would be new and exciting, and I can’t wait to learn more! We were shown the new shoe box which looks awesome, and were told you could buy race specific inserts and charms for your shoe laces. How cool! You can see a couple of the inserts pictured below, as well as the box.

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The next guest was a special surprise, Jenny Simpson! This girl is a beast. She holds the 2013 women’s record for the mile in 4:19. WOW! She is an Olympian as well, and has a long, long list of accolades. She seemed so down to earth and spoke of her childhood Disney memories.

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After the presentation closed out, it was time to run! I was actually glad (even though it was WAY past my bedtime) because I was starting to get chilly. First, it was time for a few more photos with friends. Me and Tara.

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No meet up is complete with a picture with some friends with character.

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We broke into a straight run group and a run/walk/run group and ran around World Showcase 1.5 times. It was a fun run, and I got to chat with some friends along the way.

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Was happy to see this girl again, even though her jacket tried to blind me.

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We finished up the run with a group photo, then a group straight run photo. Can you find me?

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Spaceship earth was gorgeous, even at midnight.

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As we walked toward the exit to leave, we had one more special surprise, a champagne toast!

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Faron sent us off with a beautiful toast and best wishes for the race, and we all said goodbye.

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But not before a photo with some #TeamrunDisney friends!

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runDisney has outdone themselves again, and I loved that this meet up was different from all the other ones being at night, watching Illuminations, etc. I think the element of surprise is part of the fun, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with next! I am so glad my husband and I got to attend, we had a blast!

QOTD: if you could plan the meet up, what is something different you would do?

Want more info on runDisney? Visit their website to sign up for events, get the latest news, and more!