Thursday, May 30, 2013

Glass Slipper Challenge. Disney's Princess Half Marathon 2.0

FINALLY we get to see the pricing for next years PHM! There had been talk of a 10k being added and the Glass Slipper Challenge being announced.....


Okay, let's get down to business...

Cash money talk....

Princess Half Marathon Price: $160 (pretty sure I paid $135 last year, significant hike)
Enchanted 10k Price: $95
Cinderella Royal Family 5k Price: $60


Half Marathon & 10k: $270
19.3 Miles of sparkle...
You'll get 3 Medals: 1 for the Half, 1 for the 10k and 1 for the GSC
You'll get 3 shirts: 1 for the Half, 1 for the 10k and 1 for the GSC (LOVE THIS IDEA)
Either Men's OR Women's cut shirts.

Directly from the runDisney website....

Race participants in the Glass Slipper Challenge will receive:
  • Champion Short-Sleeved Tech Shirts for the Half Marathon, 10K and Glass Slipper Challenge in Women’s or Men’s Cut*
  • Special Glass Slipper Challenge Finisher Medal, along with Disney Princess Half Marathon and Disney Princess Enchanted 10K Finisher Medals for completing the Half Marathon and 10K*
  • Official Race Program Guide*
  • iGiftBag
  • Personalized bib (Must register by December 1, 2013 for name to appear on bib)*
  • On-course and post-race refreshments
  • ChronoTrack B-tag timed races, with live runner tracking signup for friends and family for both events
  • Personalized results website

To receive the Glass Slipper Challenge Finisher Medal, you must register for the Glass Slipper Challenge. Registering for the 10K and Half Marathon individually will not make you eligible to receive the Glass Slipper Challenge Finisher Medal.

Glass Slipper Challenge 2-Princess Team

Don't want to go on your magical journey alone? Grab a partner, register and run the Half Marathon portion of the Glass Slipper Challenge together as a 2-person team! Team registration is a fun way to compete in the Princess Half Marathon with added perks for each princess on your team.

Team Registration Fee: $15 per Team

Runners participating in the Half Marathon or Glass Slipper Challenge can sign up to be a Team to run in the Half Marathon.  There is no Team division for the Disney Enchanted 10K.

Each team that participates in Disney Princess Half Marathon will receive:

  • All of the Individual registration inclusions plus…
  • Commemorative Team Bib (Must register by December 1, 2013 for team name to appear on bib)*
  • Commemorative Sash
  • Team Photo area at Packet Pick-Up
  • Eligibility for Team awards
  • 2-person team registration includes added perks for each princess on the team**

Dates, times, prices and inclusions subject to change. All races are subject to capacity limits and may close at any time.

*Participants must attend Packet Pick-up at the
 Disney Fit For a Princess Expo to receive their race packet, bib, and tech shirt. Finisher medals will be distributed to finishers during the race. None of these items will be mailed to registrants.

**Note: Not a relay – both participants run the entire Half Marathon race.

Sammy and I have already confirmed we will be doing the TEAM thing!!!! I feel slightly insane....but SO excited! We will be thinking about costuming and such soon!

Will you be there!?

Monday, May 27, 2013

Proud to be an American

I will do my absolute best to not go off on a tangent here that might offend or upset people but I want to express what Memorial Day or any other national holiday for that matter means to me...

A little background.... Both my Mothers side of the family and my Fathers side of the family have been in the armed forces..Navy and Marines to be 100% sure so, I have American pride running through my veins. I don't believe to be an American you need to be either Republican or Democrat, but what I feel happens is people lose sight of what being an American means. I feel all we have been doing recently is splitting into two sides. This absolutely disgusts me. I personally believe there is nothing more unpatriotic and distasteful than someone putting down our military personnel. You can either believe war is necessary or unnecessary all you want, but it has happened and will continue to happen until those who want to oppress open their eyes. I do not believe war is either fantastic nor evil, but what I do believe is is that if someone is willing to risk their life so I can sit here on my porch with Ace laying in the sun beside me on this beautiful day (after 4-5 days of rain, thunder and lightning, coincidence?) then I will support them until I can no longer breathe.

I am proud to live in a country where there are numerous people, men and women, who feel like they have the obligation and duty to protect the country they love and millions of people they will never meet to the degree they are putting their lives in most certain danger.

I would like to ask all of my followers/readers/friends/family to not speak of the First Lady's attire today, the upcoming healthcare reform, the battle for seats in the house.... None of these things have anything to do with life or death. Instead think of someone, anyone: family, coworker, friend who  gave their life for this amazing country or is currently fighting for us all.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Leibster Award 2013

First off, THANK YOU to both Kim at Confessions of a Domestic Goddess and Karen at Losing the Glass Slippers for nominating me for a Liebster Award! If you are thinking, what the heck is a Leibster Award, you would be thinking the EXACT same thing I was this morning. The Liebster award is a way of personally recognizing your favorite up-and-coming blogs that inspire you. I love this idea and I am so glad I am part of it because it is a fantastic way to connect with other bloggers. It's always a good feeling when you are able to have even a small impact on someone's day.

This is 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. 


Random Facts:
1. I met the 5 Time Worlds Strongest Man, Mariusz Pudzianowski. I'm literally obsessed with him. He is part of my larger obsession which is Strongman Competitions. It's the one BIG thing my father (Ojciec) and I have in common and that we enjoy sharing time watching.

2. I would love to work for animal charities if I had an endless supply of money and time, if not start my own. 

3. I could live in leggings. I don't feel the need for any other type of pants.

4. I met the most amazing man a girl could ever dream of at 17 and have been head over heels ever since. (Well mostly haha). He is the male version of me, we complete each other (I know gag...but its true) This summer will be 8 years together. We have a handsome son and a beautiful house. I don't know what I would do without him. He takes care of me and is my best friend. He has pushed me to be who I am today, knowing that he is there to catch me if I fall or to encourage me when I need it is what true love is. What we have is not textbook anything. We make our own rules (sex and the city reference anyone?).

5. I could eat jalapeno's for every meal. Spicy food makes me happy. I may or may not be part Mexican. It's the only food I crave....EVER.

6. I will hold a normal, rational conversation with Ace no matter where I am or who is around.

7. I believe margaritas should be acceptable breakfast beverages. The world would be a happier place.

8. I have spent 80% of my childhood at Disney. Which has caused me to become obsessed. Only a certain group of people get how this can be rational. Thank you if you are one :)

9. I genuinely like the smell of tequila.

10. I'm obsessed with skulls. 

11. My favorite place in the world is in the sand by the ocean. No matter if it's Cape Cod or Jupiter, Florida.

11 Questions from Kim:
1. Why did you start blogging? I started blogging to have a place to follow my journey towards Disney's Princess Half Marathon 2013. Well, I didn't do so well BEFORE it, so now I am making up for it after. I want to give others who don't know where to start with their health or running a place to look for advice. I'm not certified in anything so it's just a regular girls advice. If I can do it, anyone can do it!
2. Do you have a nickname and how did you get it? Currently my nickname has been Rapunzel, it's because my hair is stupid long, like down to my hips. And no, I will not be cutting it off. haha
3. If you could have any car, what would you drive? I'd like to not have a car. That to me would mean that I lived in a place nice enough to walk with everything I needed within walking distance :) I hate driving.
4. When reading, do you prefer an Ebook or physical paper book? EBook
5. Do you cook? What's your favorite meal to make? After successfully making only small fires in the kitchen I am now finally somewhat successful as a chef. My favorite meal to make is the Beer Cheddar Soup from Canada's Le Cellier. My boyfriend claims in 8 years it is the best thing I have ever made.
6. What's your favorite wine? ANY Connecticut wine I try on the CT Wine Trail.
7. Milk or cream in your coffee? I'm not a coffee drinker.
8. You have a month of vacation and money is no object- where would you go? Everywhere I have ever wanted to. Poland to see the Motherland and maybe look for family, China to feed a Panda on my lap, I would run as many races as I possibly could AND I would of course spend time at each Disney location.
9. Funniest thing that's happened to you recently? Funny things don't happen to me, only Twilight Zone Moments happen haha.
10. Favorite TV show that's on air right now? Pitbulls and Parolees
11. Mac or PC? PC. I have an iPad and an iPhone but haven't yet bridged over my computer..

11 Questions from Karen:
1. Tutu or Sparkleskirt? I'm not that girly, but if I had to pick one, I'd go Sparkleskirt, I saw some ladies struggling in those port-o-potties with their tutu's for the Princess Half, talk about wardrobe malfunction!
2. How many furry kids do you have? 1! AND HE'S THE BEST BABY EVER! His name is Ace, he is (we think) a lab/pit/greyhound mix. He was 'born' 11/11/11. He likes older women, rotisserie chicken, has his own spot on the couch and recently became involved in a love triangle. His favorite toy as of this month is his hedgehog and he does not like fireworks. He knows when bedtime is and sleeps like a human next to me. I know you only asked the number but I'm so in love with him I can't help but keep talking haha.
3. How long have you been running? Since August 2012
4. What's your profession?  Aquatics & Wellness Director, I am a life-long lifeguard (10 years) and was able to make a career out of my passion, I'm one of the lucky few.
5. What's one of your favorite childhood memories? At Disney of course! I remember my Ojciec (Dad) making dinner plans for him and I and we went to the Whispering Canyon at the Wilderness Lodge. I can remember sharing a skillet with him and laughing and having a blast, loud music and Cast Members dancing around and I remember the food being amazing too. My father works so incredibly hard to give my family everything they want and I can just remember him smiling and seeming so relaxed. Him and I haven't spent as much time just the two of us. I really enjoy and treasure the time that him and I spend just us two.
6. Do you fuel during runs? What and when? I only recently started doing this. I have been using Power bar's Strawberry Banana Energy Gel, it really helped me one time when I had a horrible cramp, I take it about 2 miles in to my run, about 20-25 minutes. 
7. What was the last book you read? 50 Shades of Grey Trilogy... I don't read unless it's this good. haha
8. Favorite race/distance you have run? I really enjoyed the Princess Half, although I was exhausted afterwards I couldn't stop smiling the whole time.
9. Three songs you love to run to? I do not run to music, I prefer to run with my thoughts BUT when I do give in it's definitely 'Pound the Alarm' - Nicki Minaj, 'The Good Life' - Three Days Grace, 'I Love It' - Icona Pop
10. Where is your favorite place to vacation? Easy. Florida, whether it is Disney OR Jupiter
11. Why do you love running? I know this gets asked a lot, but I never tire of hearing what runners love about running! I love pushing myself past what I once thought was only a dream. I continue to love to run when I motivate others to run too.

11 Questions for my blog picks
1. Do you run with a partner?
2. What race is tops on your bucket list?
3. What is one piece of advice you have gotten about running that you always think of.
4. Tequila, Rum, or Vodka?
5. Favorite movie?
6. What do you bring with you on a run?
7. Do you cross-train? If so, what do you do and how often?
8. When you are not running, how do you spend your time?
9. If you won $1 Million what would you do with the money?
10. Do you have a pre or post race ritual?
11. What do you look for when choosing races to run?

So I don't know many 'up-and-coming' blogs so I am putting those I follow and read frequently. <3

Karen @ Losing the Glass Slippers
Kim @ Barking Mad About Running
Patty @ Margaritas, Miles, and the Mouse
Abby @ Abby's Road to Amazingness
Amy @ Pumpkin to Princess
Erin @ For the Love of Disney Running
Jen @ Hello Fitness...We Meet Again
Julie @ Run. Walk. Fastpass. Repeat
Rebecca @ 50 Half Marathons in 50 States
Melody @ Sweet Like a Song
Mindy @ Road Runner Girl

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

May 2013 Bulu Box Subscription Review

Okay.... So I have this minor issue, if a company shows me any attention and has fantastic customer service and LIVES BREATHES AND EATS their mission statement I'm immediately hooked. Bulu Box is just that. They like your Instagram Photos and retweet you, and direct message you. If you give me the customer service I expect, I will most likely fall in love with you, the only way to guarantee love is to rescue puppies for me. So they are in pretty good standing thus far.

Here is the videoblog of my first Bulu Box!!

Like a dummy I didn't take photos of the products, I will do that and update ASAP.

Give Bulu Box a try!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Cheshire Sea Dog 10k

Okay. I'll admit it first... I ALWAYS think of the Cheshire Cat when I think of Cheshire, CT. I can't really explain why. I know there is nothing about Cheshire that justifies that thought process but it still happens. So anyway, this was my first 10k. I didn't really run races in the logical order 5k, 10k, half, full... I did 5k, half, 5k, 5k, 10k....oops. 

Well, first off, the Southington-Cheshire YMCA did a fantastic job with the race today. Not only did they make it a family affair by having local businesses and vendors by having a "doggie dash" on top of the 5k and the 10k but they had a very interesting and somewhat challenging course. (As well as an awesome shirt!)

I will admit that I was a little thrown off by the fact that I had to go to one tent to get my bib number and then go to another tent to get my bib. I would have preferred that was put in a pre-race email. That to me is not typical for a race like this and added a bit to my pre-race anxiety. Once I picked up my bib, shirt, shoe laces (kinda cool) and looked at the start line I headed back to my car to stretch and get pumped up. The lady who parked next to me and I started talking about races and the course. She had done the Cheshire Half Marathon and said the course was perfect, not too many hills but enough to keep it interesting. This race was both our first time at Bartlem Park so we were both unsure what was in store. She then proceeded to tell me her favorite course of all time in CT was in Colebrook. I must have looked shocked because she said to me, "do you know where that is?" I of course have no idea where Colebrook, CT is but on September 28 I am running the Hogsback Half Marathon in that town (proceeds are going to Running for Rescues, sing up NOW!) We said we would probably see each other there and parted ways.
 I had had a ton of water and wanted to go to the bathroom prior to the start of the race. The line for both the regular park bathrooms and the port-o-pottys was longer than any race I have been too. Not only were people taking WAY TOO long but an 11-year old child cut in front of myself and the 4 people in front of me 5 minutes before the race was too start. I get a child needed to use a bathroom, I'm not heartless but where is the parent?! There is a certain etiquette to standing in line. I do not like to rush to the start line I like to take my time, this was very upsetting. Luckily a third stall opened up and I was able to be to the 10k Start Line with 60 seconds to spare.

Although the 10k and the 5k began in two separate locations we merged about .10 of a mile after the start. We then ran together for about .50 of a mile until the 5k went left and the 10k stayed straight. The course was actually really pretty, running through the neighborhoods of Cheshire was very calming. There weren't as many spectators as the Vernon Mothers Day Dash but the amount of volunteers out on the course made you feel like there were people there to see you run. Another positive for the S/C YMCA. I did wish that there was maybe 1 more water station but I was appreciative that there were two spaced out. I lined up close to the start line and boy did I get passed by many many people after the first mile. After that little (yeah right, little) blow to my ego I decided that if I were to at least beat my best 10k time so far, 1:14 then I would still be proud of myself. The runners for the 10k were real deal serious runners. If was to come in last it was going to happen going up against some great runners. I pushed myself more than I had ever before in a race. I had my first 3 miles under 10 minutes (WHAAAAT!?!) It only drizzled a little, luckily there were no downpours. The finish line was across the street from where the 10k started. I was able to pass one or two more people the last .30 and as people were crossing an announcer was calling out their name and what town they were from. I was so relieved to be done!! AND! I had beaten my best time!! I finished at 1:04!! 10 MINUTES OFF! WOOHOO!!! Forget the fact there were 250 people registered and I was 235!!! I didn't come in last! Yayyy!!!

I grabbed some water after passing under the balloon arch and had to hobble back to my car back across the street. Ooooowweeee. It felt like a longer walk than the run I had just completed. I had packed my bag with a change of clothes just in case it did rain. I am very happy I did. Not only do I detest sitting in workout clothes but I had to show off my new shirt!

Love Bulu Box! This shirt is soooooo soft. I still have to post my subscription review. I'll do that after I am done with this post. After changing I walked around their expo, grabbed a delicious and much deserved orange slice and half a bagel. I looked at the race results and headed home. There was a puppy date about to happen!!! My Partner in Crime, my Better Half, my Disney Twin just rescued General a 3 month old German Shepherd and even though he's only been 'home' for 3 days we knew Ace and him needed to meet I had a bottle of Sachem's Picnic waiting to be sipped. :)

General and Ace meet for the first time! 
I will leave you with pictures of these two. Nothing is better than a puppy butt <3

"When you're the best of friends...."

Friday, May 17, 2013

Vernon Mother's Day Dash 5k

Happy Mothers Day!

Whether your children have 2 legs or have 4 and are covered with hair. Happy Mother's Day to you! What a blast!. Sunday was the second of three races I have this month. This race was by far the cheapest at $15, but what it lacked in price it made up for elsewhere. I attached the flyer to the race here. Vernon Mother's Day Dash Flyer. I picked up my mother for the 9.30am start around 8.30am. When we got to Henry Park there weren't too many people and it was still drizzling. Although I don't mind running a regular training run in the rain I prefer to not have wet weather during the race. Luckily as more people showed up the weather cleared up.

There were many pluses about this race as opposed to the Girls Just Wanna Run 5k I did a week prior. First was that I was pleasantly greeted as I approached the table. The girls at the table communicated to me that I would receive a bag with my bib and safety pins in it as well as the race shirt (I totally forgot I got a shirt). It wasn't a tech shirt but it was BRIGHT BRIGHT NEON yellow which is cool. I was wearing pink so I am glad I stood out. 

I wore this shirt from Feed The for the race.

This was the race shirt and my bib number. They had the B-Tag on the back. I love that little piece of technology added.

Second was that the Start and the Finish were both clearly marked which I appreciated and helped ease my pre-race anxiety. It also helped me know where my mother would be standing. I lined up fairly close to the start line because of how badly the race prior was when I gave some space. The only dangerous part to being up close is getting carried away with the speed at the start. I thought at one point I went out too fast...yeah I was right... My first mile was clocked in my Nike + app at 8:48...NEVER IN MY LIFE HAVE I DONE THIS!! When I saw my Garmin beep at 9:06 (discrepancies are frequent) I was so impressed with myself I was able to carry through to the water station which was after Mile 1.5 but right before Mile 2. The hills weren't horrible and it was nice running through neighborhoods, people were sitting on their front porches or in the back of their SUV's cheering the runners on. It was really heart warming to see how the town was enjoying the race too.

About .50 Miles from the finish is when I usually have an energy reserve....but to be honest I was running at a pace that I never had experienced before...I ended up passing 2 people in the stretch home to cross at 30:02 on my Nike + app. The race timing system clocked me at 30:55... either way, I took another 2.5ish minutes off my previous PR. Once I was done the CT Youth Marines handed me water, which was good because I couldn't move. Then I grabbed a delicious bagel and apple and sat down to get congratulated by my Mother. I was so happy to have her with me.

I was so proud of myself I didn't know what to do! I couldn't stop smiling. I'm so shocked every time I do better than the time before. I can definitely say this is a race I will do annually.

It was the best way to spend Mother's Day.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Girls Just Wanna Run 5k - May 5th

While browsing I noticed that on Cinco de Mayo there was a 5k called the Girls Just Wanna Run 5k for $20 (whaaaat! I know, great price) so I was immediately sold. I was hoping to get someone else to go with me because Litchfield is home to three of my favorite Vineyards on the CT Wine TrailMiranda Vineyard, Sunset Meadow Vineyards and Haight-Brown Vineyards. They are delicious and gorgeous stops along the roads of Connecticut. Unfortunately I did not get anyone else to register and went on my own. I enjoyed going to the runDisney races alone but I was almost more nervous going to a race alone in my own state.

Always gotta tape it up. I love KT TAPE. I got blue to help go #BostonStrong for this race.

Shirt from Raw Threads

It took me about 60 minutes to get to the parking lot. When I arrived I saw a sea of pink and thought phew I knew that black was the right choice haha.

Once I parked I went to visit the table to check in and get my bib and I knew I was interested to see what the tech shirts looked like. I missed out on the deadline for the shirt with registration but when I heard it was only $18 I am completely okay with paying under $20 for a tech shirt. So check in table. I arrived to the table and stared awkwardly at the woman responsible for those with last names A-D...Stood in silence for about 30 seconds and then told her my name and said I was here to pick up my bib. She sounded somewhat snotty when she repeated the town I live in, it's on the other side of Hartford...She was almost confused why I drove an hour to get there...I said I love to run, so I'll drive anywhere. She gave me a fake smile.....Then the awkward silence began again...She didn't tell me hold on right here we will get your bib. We just stood there. Silent. Again. So I asked if I was to pick up my bib somewhere else and she rudely explained the girl behind her was getting my bag. Oh. My bag, cool, actually its one of those eco-friendly grocery type bags, but did you tell me that? Did you even pretend to have any experience with customer service? No. So that immediately turned me off to this event. This was the first interaction with race staff I had and I had a bad taste in my mouth already. 

I then walked over to the 'Glam Table' which is an adorable idea. I waited behind a woman and her daughter trying to decide how many butterflies they wanted in their hair for the race. I wasn't in a rush so I smiled and waited. A line formed behind me and just as it was my turn to ask for the race shirt a woman and her mother barged, yes barged in front of me without an excuse me, without a word. The mother stood there blocking the table from me and was loudly proclaiming that her daughter was a brat.....really? I don't know where she could have gotten that from. I proceeded to stand there silently  It was my turn, I got my shirt and needed to remove myself from the estrogen mine field.

So I went back to my car to continue to hydrate, stretch and get #poweredbybits. I have an EnergyBits review earlier on my blog. I will link it to this. I am in love with EnergyBits by the way. Check them out!

Sat down to stretch for a little and relax before not being able to find the start line. Boston Wicked Strong! Raw Threads shirts are so soft. If you haven't bought one yet, do it! You wont be dissapointed.

 Waiting in line for the one, single port-o-potty I saw this. So cool This is one of the only things I liked about the race. The girl power aspect of it. Another negative to this race...the continual lack of respect and manners. A woman who was not running let her daughter who was not running take 10 minutes in the port-o-potty with 15 minutes left till the start of the race...there were 15 women in line with me. I was 4 away. So I scratched the idea of getting to pee one more time before the start...this was just another check in the category of not doing this race again.

I followed the herd of women in pink to the poorly identified start line. There weren't corrals because it was only a 5k of about 500+ women which is fine and all but I had women pushing in front of me to get closer to the line to walk...Again. If you know you are going to walk and there is an option to run I think it is only respectful to not put yourself in a dangerous situation of being trampled/run into...So gun goes off and away we go. The course was probably the only plus, it was gorgeous along a lake relatively flat and had many straight a way parts. I ended up finishing with my best time ever! Thank goodness! I was so happy there was good outcome to this race.

Even though I will without a doubt never run this race again and never recommend it to anyone I am glad I did it. It has not only helped me remember how lucky I am to have been brought up with manners and respect but it is another stepping stone to my next running goal...


Yes, you heard it here. More to come about that.

I have another 5k this Sunday, Mothers Day and a 10k the weekend after! Woohooo! Full steam ahead! I cannot wait for the Wine and Dine Half (and the Tower of Terror 10 miler if I have a say).