Saying No to the Summer Body

Saying No to the Summer Body

This conversation was sponsored by Denny’s in an ongoing partnership to bring you the newest menus and special offerings, as I am a member of Denny’s Diner Ambassador Council. All thoughts and opinions are magical and mine. 🙂

Growing up, I never knew there was a difference between my winter body and summer body, mainly because I am not the type of person that jumps at the chance to lay on the beach, or go for a hike, or strip down to barely there and get into water, either. Mind you, I enjoy looking at the beach or admiring the forest – in pictures. I used to love being in the water when I was younger, and even swimming IN the ocean, especially Hawai’i. Until – FISH.



Once I was old enough to realize they are IN THERE WITH ME – Nope.

No lakes, no oceans, sure as hell no rivers and whatever is growing in there can stay in there. I resolved to only eat fish, they are not my friends – they are in fact food (sorry Nemo, but Bruce was wrong, LOL).



In Northern California, we have long summers. So, even getting a late start on priming our bodies to enjoy the heat of the sun, wearing the allowable allocation of the most minimal amounts of clothing, tends to last longer that other regions of the nation. Granted, not everyone follows the same allocation of clothing to the body, but hey, do you. It’s mid-July, but believe me summer is still going strong till October. I’m getting a later start, but better late than never, right?

Forget the summer body, focus on your lifetime body

The last few weeks I’ve been hitting the ground running, in hopes to get my booty in shape for the summer, but with a reasonable goal to reach by my 35th birthday in November. I lovingly call it “Fly by 35.” Now, I am all about loving one’s self, so for those of you thinking, “girl you’re already fly, love yourself,” THANK YOU. I know. AND I am going to continue to love myself by making sure I am still running around by ages 50 and 60 because I have a lot to do with my life, like hopefully chase after my grandkids and great-grandkids. You know I want to be able to run down Main Street U.S.A. with each of them, for their first trip. I’m just early-prepping my aging body to withstand the future adventures. That’s how I see it anyway.

Then I began to think about it, and I realized that I don’t want a summer bod, I want a lifetime bod. I’ve said it in previous posts, it’s easier said than done. My weight fluctuates and my life circumstances change so I put workouts on the back burner, or even at times if food money was slim, I eat the crap to give the good stuff to the kids, or I just don’t eat at all. It’s a sacrifice as a parent, right? But that’s not healthy either and I plan on being around for a while, so I decided that I needed to get in gear. I’m sharing my work-in-progress plan of staying on track with a lifetime bod. I’m not getting any younger, and L O V E countdowns, so my first goal is to see how I can stay on track up to my 35th birthday.

3 Things that Will Help Me Stay on Track for a Lifetime Bod

1. Food

Being allergic to a lot of things means my food intake is already limited. However, I am not allergic to chocolate (thankfully) but that also means that I have to limit what I’m not allergic to (chocolate) in order to balance my gut with my muscles. Regardless, I have to eat. When you’re working out, expending energy, you need to intake energy in the form of foods and supplements. For work and home I switch up between morning protein shakes, fruits and raw veggies and I usually will eat leftovers from dinner that week. I haven’t gotten into the meal prep craze so I take baby steps. One meal at a time, literally.

When it’s time to head out the door for a family meal, there are a few spots that I can count on to customize meals that fit my lifestyle and allergies. Aside from Disneyland, one of my favorite places to grab a bite (at any hour of the day), is Denny’s. Breakfast, Lunch, or  Dinner, I know that I can jump in a booth and enjoy a meal that satisfies my tummy and keeps me under calories.

Image © Denny's Image © Denny’s

Even if you don’t have allergies to deal with, maybe you’re just monitoring your caloric intake or looking for healthier options, Denny’s Fit Fare Menu is a perfect place to start. There are four categories for Fit Fare: Lean, Light, Protein and Fiber.

They offer breakfast options like The Fit Slam (Lean, Light & Protein) is egg whites scrambled with spinach and grape tomatoes, bacon and an English Muffin; Banana Pecan Pancake Breakfast (Lean and Fiber) which sounds amazing – glazed pecans cooked into the wheat pancakes, fresh banana slices, egg whites and two strips of turkey bacon; and finally the Fit Fare Veggie Skillet (Light & Protein) – who says you can’t have veggies for breakfast?!

BONUS: For the gluten free customer, they offer gluten free English muffins! Throw the scrambled eggs, into the muffin and layer the bacon (hold the grape tomatoes, or get them on the side), and you have an awesome breakfast sandwich. You can even add a slice of cheese just to make sure it all stays in there together! I love cheese, so regardless of what kind of body I have cheese stays.

I’ll be more excited about the lunch, if Denny’s begins to carry gluten free hamburger buns, because their Chicken Avocado Sandwich is mouthwatering. Denny’s also offers a Cali Jack Burger (Protein & Fiber) and Cranberry Apple Chicken Salad (Lean & Light) for the lunch options. I could always just “bring my own bun” which wouldn’t be a first. 🙂

Fit Fare Alaska Salmon Image © Denny's Fit Fare Alaska Salmon Image © Denny’s

Dinner time is always a fun time because typically I have the whole family with me, so I tend to either share a meal with the hubby, or just have something light. I don’t like to eat a ton in the evenings, especially restaurant food, it’s heavy on my gut. I can definitely see myself eating off the Dinner options, because FISH. Remember my love for fish – on my plate? Denny’s has two delicious options of seafood – Tilapia Ranchero and a new dish, Alaska Salmon. Want red meat? Then the new Sirloin Steak is your best option.

When I’m not eating at Disneyland, Denny’s or trying out some cool new restaurant (I wish I did this one more), I’ll be toting my work lunch full of whatever delicious cuisine that my hubby and or kids prepared the night before! Or, I’ll be eating a gluten free cupcake. LOL.

2. Exercise

Eating right is only a portion of getting that lifetime bod. Movement is extremely important. I’ve realized after transitioning from retail to an office environment, sitting at my desk 8+ hours of the day works against my goals of maintaining a hot mama bod. I’m excited to say that I’ve been consistent in exercising either through walking, running, and/or my Nike Training Club workout app the last few weeks. On a good day, I do “two-a-days” which makes me feel super accomplished.

I’ve shared my excitement over the app in a previous post, and I swear it just keeps getting better! With one of the most recent updates, I am able to schedule my workout plan and time frame. This app also works in sync with the Nike+ Running app. I decided to create a workout plan for the month of July, just to test the waters. I’ve had some times that I had to edit my plan, because I didn’t have time, or was too sore, and the app allows that freedom to switch and add workouts.

3. Rest & Recover

I’m honestly having the hardest time with resting. My brain goes a billion miles per hour, there is ALWAYS something that needs to be done. Even if I skip a workout I am not resting, I’m doing something else. It’s important to allow your body to recover, realign and rest. Some of the ways that I’ve found to just relax my mind is by playing a game on my iPhone, or listening to an audio book.

My current rest obsession is Disney’s Emoji Blitz. 🙂 It’s a cute little game and you play to earn Disney Emojis for your keyboard. H E L L O – Disney Emojis. Having conversations with your crew are more fun with Disney magic.

In case you want to try it out, my awesome friend Mindy wrote all about it over on her blog This FairyTale Life. If you haven’t downloaded the game yet, you should. It’s adorable and quite therapeutic! 

When you are consistently working out, make sure you are taking the proper time to let your body recover, especially if you are really starting new or have been stagnant for a long time. You will feel it, maybe not immediately, but usually the next day or two. Go hard or go home, yes, but don’t hurt yourself!

You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.”
– Louise L. Hay ❤️✨🌺

All in all, I’m learning to mindful of my body and my spirit. On days that I just don’t want to workout or feel like I need to get that entire pint of Ben & Jerry’s in my mouth, I have to remind myself that I only get one body, so I need to love and care for it on a daily basis, always look to maintaining it for future use. This might look different for everyone, we all are unique. There’s no right size or shape. We should work on being fulfilled, happy and whole inside and out. I want to be around for a long time. I know that my hubby and kids want that, too. There’s a lot that I haven’t experienced in life, but I’m hopeful that these eyes will be able to see things, my feet will be able to take me to far off places and that my hands will be able to create magic for a long time. Happy and healthy. That’s my goal.

Will you join me in saying “no” to the summer body and work towards maintaining a lifetime body? 🙂

Spread Magic

This conversation was sponsored by Denny’s in an ongoing partnership to bring you the newest menus and special offerings, as I am a member of Denny’s Diner Ambassador Council. All thoughts and opinions are magical and mine. 🙂

Getting Fit with Gabby Reece and 24 Hour Fitness

Getting Fit with Gabby Reece and 24 Hour Fitness

I had the pleasure of not only meeting Gabrielle Reece this past weekend, but had the opportunity to just sit and chat with her as a mom and woman about fitness, life and self health. And after that, she taught a HIGHX class that my daughter & I, along with about 35 others, took and we WORKED IT! It was amazing, it was hard, but it was SO worth it.

*Special thanks to my friend Amanda Zimmerman for all of the photos for this post! 

Before I get into my experience, I have to say that Gabby is an extraordinary woman. She is beautiful from the inside out, and it was such a joy to have a chance to just talk and listen. I shared with Gabby my recent revelation on taking care of myself and I really was interested in hearing her thoughts on getting back into fitness as a busy mom. I was starstruck since I grew up watching her career, her appearances in magazines and just being an amazing role model.

Any nervousness with my first in-person “interview” quickly subsided as I was introduced to Gabby and she asked me if I’d like to chat with her; we just sat and chatted as if we were friends. I was at ease and excited to be reaffirmed in my thoughts about health and fitness, and she reminded me of a few things too! She’s extremely conversational, personable and fun!

We have to be selfish with our workouts and taking care of our health.

It seems pretty simple when you think about it, take care of yourself so you can take care of others. But there can sometimes be this underlying and subconscious guilt that we have. Like we have to apologize for spending an hour away from the family to work out. Don’t feel guilty. Establish with your family that not taking care of yourself can be detrimental to the family’s health as a whole. 

Don’t be afraid to work with others.

I definitely feel like working alongside others has been beneficial. I feel confident that I can participate and if I even slightly think I will struggle, my awesome workout teammates encourage me to keep going. We get to cheer each other on and share in the accomplishment of our session! Not only is it fun, but it keeps us accountable as we get fit. For HIGHX at 24 Hour, I was so happy that my daughter was able to join me. She’s preparing for her first season of high school (yeah, I’m old!) track next year, and wanted to get started on training. She did absolutely amazing. I’m excited to have a little workout partner in my corner. She’s also a great encourager for me. 


The workout flew by! We focused on our entire bodies, getting cardio, strength training, stretching, plyometrics, the works! It was fun and got me pumped for the rest of the day! We rotated through about 14 or so stations within 50 minutes and each movement was broken up within 30 second increments. It was fast-paced and high intensity. There were a few times that it took me a minute to figure out what moves we were doing, but Gabby and her trainer were there to show me and it kept me moving through! 

I definitely am excited to check out our local 24 hour to see when this program launches. The HIGHX program is high intensity but for all skill levels. We work at our own pace, and are encouraged to listen to our bodies. I think anyone can do this program and there are modifications for most of the exercises if needed. 

I think having a program in place that allows me to get in and get out of the gym is wonderful. Not only that, but making new friends along the way is a cherry on top! 

You can read more about Gabby & HIGHX on her website

Call your local 24 Hour Fitness and find out when HIGHX will launch at your location!

We did it! The

We did it! The “After” shot. 🙂 

I was invited to meet and workout with Gabby Reece as a member of the media. There was no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% mine and always magical. And the sweat involved was not “Photoshopped.”

Have you found a workout that you love? Do you enjoy working out in a group? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Coming Soon! Gabrielle Reece & 24 Hour Fitness Launch HIGHX Program!

Coming Soon! Gabrielle Reece & 24 Hour Fitness Launch HIGHX Program!

Image courtesy 24 Hour Fitness

Image courtesy 24 Hour Fitness

Remember that post I shared before about taking better care of myself? Well my goal has been to better myself, and also share more posts and information on fitness and health. I recently participated in a high intensity 6-week program and am excited to continue my new lifestyle journey feeling refreshed and stronger every day.  I can attest that this type of training works!

With that sentiment in mind, I am excited to share the following news! For those of you that have a 24 Hour Fitness location near them, I want to let you know that there is a new program that has launched – HIGHX, a program created by world class athlete, Gabrielle Reece using Lifeline products. Her initial reasoning was to train, and then include her friends, but she found that it “fulfilled a need to get friends working out while fitting functional training into their busy schedules.” Let’s face it, as moms and parents, we have to make time to work out. And when I’m in a class, it’s so much easier as it takes out the “thinking” process. I go and show up ready to work and sweat. I know that I’ll get a good workout in and that I’ll get the training I need to make sure my posture, position and body is doing the workout properly. 

Gabby Reece – Image courtesy 24 Hour Fitness

Gabby Reece – Image courtesy 24 Hour Fitness

The HIGHX program consists of circuit training and its designed for all fitness and skill levels. The best thing about it is that they’re meant to work in small groups. There’s a sense of community and building support with others but you also can still have good instruction and coaching by the instructor in that type of setting.

This 50-minute high intensity class is designed to maximize the body’s ability to burn fat, build lean muscle, optimize the body’s hormonal and physiological  response to exercise, all while improving overall daily and athletic performance.

*While I am not being compensated for this post, it is sponsored. This weekend (Sunday 6/14) I will have the opportunity to meet Ms. Reese and participate in a master class with other members of the press! I am super excited to meet her, I followed her beach volleyball career and her husband’s surf career when I was younger, and it’s always inspiring to meet and hear influential people share their stories. Plus, how many people can say they’ve had the experience of working out with a world class athlete?! I can’t wait to share with you!

About Gabrielle Reece, HIGHX Program Creator And Presenter
One of the world’s most influential female athletes, former Women’s Beach Volleyball League star and fitness icon, Gabrielle Reece, also known as Gabby, possesses a look that coveys both athleticism and feminine beauty. At 6’3”, Gabby is a dominant force on and off the pro beach volleyball circuit.  Her commanding presence, passion for healthy living, and fitness expertise makes her a popular public speaker on the subjects of health and wellness. An avid proponent of empowering people to take responsibility for their own health, Gabby has become a role model to women worldwide regarding how to achieve peak fitness, good health, and overall well-being for themselves and their entire family.

About Lifeline
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Lifeline, a fitness leader for over 40 years, continuously develops revolutionary training tools that set the benchmark in professional grade products used for bodyweight, progressive variable resistance and functional training.  Lifeline is a Pivotal 5, LLC company.

About 24 Hour Fitness
Headquartered in San Ramon, California, 24 Hour Fitness is a leading health club industry pioneer, serving nearly four million members in more than 400 clubs across the U.S. For more than 30 years, the company has been dedicated to helping members change their lives and reach their individual fitness goals. With convenient club locations, personal training services, popular group exercise classes and a variety of strength, cardio and functional training equipment, 24 Hour Fitness offers fitness solutions for everyone 

Please call 1-800-224-0240 or visit for more information and to find the club nearest you.

Taking Care of Me

Taking Care of Me

Photo © How About Now Photo © How About Now

Transformation of body begins on the inside… with the mind.

I’m going to go a little deeper on you for just a moment because this is important to me. I feel that someone somewhere might need to hear some encouragement and I know I recently seriously struggled with this myself; It’s a constant daily battle in my mind. The feelings of insecurity and fear about your body can do one of two things – push you into a deeper, negative funk, leaving you cloudy, sad, irritable or prone to self destruction, or be the catalyst for changing your thinking while making small steps towards a goal of better health for YOURSELF.

Thinking of yourself is not selfish.

As a mommy to five, I have to take care of myself first. My babies depend on me; my husband depends on me (and I, him). It wasn’t too long ago that I was in a serious funk over not just how I looked, but how I FELT on the inside. Besides not fitting into my clothes, I was FEELING heavier, becoming more irritable with my family, went on long periods of not eating or overeating, and was depressed. My husband is a gym ninja but I just haven’t had the likes for the gym for whatever reason, and always enjoyed running. However, my negative thoughts and fear overtook my running passion and eventually I stopped running, too.

The average person could not tell the struggle that was within my mind. Even now just writing that out is somewhat freeing. You wouldn’t think that I have such negative thoughts about myself, but it’s because I can hide it well. I laugh a lot, I love magic and making people happy. I am really optimistic. I wish it were always that way in my mind, but it’s a constant struggle. Talking about it is helpful and some days are better than others. I’m extremely grateful for the support system that I have in my family and dear friends.

Put on your oxygen mask.

After a seriously emotional talk with Jeff one night, all of my fears and insecurities were poured out at once. Sure, I’d make comments here and there, but this was pretty heavy. He held me as I cried and very lovingly looked at me and held my face and told me something like this: “I love you and I love your body how you are now, or if you gain more weight or lose more weight. I want you to be healthy. I want you to be confident in yourself. If you’re happy with how you look and feel and you’re healthy, that’s what I want. But I can tell that you’re not happy and you don’t feel healthy. You need to take care of yourself before you can attempt take care of any of us. Liken it to an oxygen mask on an airplane. If it drops down do you put it on the kids or yourself first? (As I’m bawling I’m mumbling “me.”) Exactly. You can’t help the kids if you pass out. They need you. I need you. Most importantly, you need it.”

And for whatever reason, that clicked.

I joined a 6 week class that would jumpstart my new lifestyle (going on week 3!) and am so grateful for my little sister Joy’s encouragement and our trainer Ryan! I’m really hoping to continue even after the six weeks is up, it’s been so amazing. They are partnering with me as I begin a new and better journey for myself and my family. I am really enjoying taking charge of my health even more, and bettering myself and my thoughts. It’s been an amazing journey so far and I am already seeing the progress; being able to have energy throughout the day for myself and my family and yes, being able to fit more of my clothes is amazing.

Image © Nike Women Image © Nike Women

I’m learning to accept myself for who I am more and more each day while seeing the importance of changing my lifestyle through eating cleaner and building muscle. I don’t like the “overweight” me because my body is not strong. I hated that I couldn’t breathe after the single flight of stairs to my bedroom. My 11 year old insists that she still sit on my lap and my legs give out. Granted, she is almost taller than me, but she’s still my baby girl! I want to be able to hold her when she needs it. I’m learning to accept that my thighs and booty will always be bigger, they held the weight of five children. But, I want them to be big and strong. I want them to carry me out to chase my future grandchildren around not have them pushing me around in my old age. While I am proud of my baby scars from by body being stretched pregnancy after pregnancy, I want to be proud of the strength that my body continues to handle on a daily basis. I want to be happy but I want to live healthy.

So what’s my driving motivation?

MY LIFE. It’s for all of us. For me and my mental and physical health, but also for them. I want to wake up knowing that I can take on the day without fear or insecurity of how I look, but knowing that I’ll be around and active to take part in my kids’ everyday lives. I want to be able to focus and push myself in my work which writing this at 6 am is proof that I am getting better at early rising! I want to be able to enjoy the world with my husband, he’s super adventurous and we want to grow old together. I’ve got to keep up with him!

As I scrolled through Facebook this morning I was inspired to share this from a coffee blocks video ad that popped up on my newsfeed. It’s a sweet video narrated by a child that is watching his or her mom workout or exercise. I felt it fitting to share here because our kids watch us. They mimic us. We teach them through words, but actions always speak louder. As my kiddos grow older, I hope they adapt the healthier choices that I’ve made. I can’t be there every second of the day, but them seeing my dedication to be better on the inside is what I hope resonates with them as they grow up.

I know everyone is different and everyone’s lifestyle is different. I can’t help but feel like at some point we need to make a choice for ourselves first. I want to be around for A LOT of things, I have a lot of graduations, weddings and celebrations in life with my family. And let’s be honest, since I’m missing #Disneyland60 this weekend, I need to be around for #Disneyland100. 🙂

I’m grateful for each of you that take the time to follow my journey, when I write or when I don’t. I’m blessed and I look forward to sharing more thoughts on life in the near future.

Getting Fit with Nike Running App

Getting Fit with Nike Running App

Welcome to the first stop aboard the Blogorail. Enjoy the ride as we share our favorite Fitness Apps!

I am so excited to share this with all of you! I’m sure most of you have heard of Nike+ Running, but I’ve got to say that they’ve done some great improvements since I began using the app in 2010! When I first started with Nike+, I had the shoes and the special chip that went inside the sole.

Now, the app tracks me through GPS and I can run in any shoe (Nike or not), and there are so many other great features that I will share here. Lace up and let’s go!

Social Media Integration

I like this new feature. Prior to getting my run on, I can opt to turn on my “cheers,” which will post a status to either twitter or Facebook, and whenever a friend sees and “likes” it, I’ll hear an applause as I’m on my run. It’s a cool feature and gives you some encouragement throughout your run. It doesn’t tell your audience what kind of run you’re on, nor does it give any stats of your progress. It simply says you are on a run with Nike.

Another part of the social media fun is that Nike+ Running has its own platform for interacting with friends and participating in challenges. You’ll need to make sure that your Nike+ account is switched “on” for social sharing, which is different from receiving “cheers.” I don’t like to make my runs public, I don’t feel comfortable with having my route posted all over the internet.

Music Integration

I’m not sure about you, but I can’t run without music. Sometimes I want to listen to Pandora or Spotify, and other times I want to just hear a customized playlist I have in my iPhone music app. The great think about Nike+ Running, is that you can use ANY music on your phone. The option is available to use a playlist, other app, or no music.

Nike Coach Feature

This is probably one of my favorite features. I used it (not as consistently as I should have) when I was training for the Star Wars 10K race. It breaks down a training routine and schedule for you by weeks. It mixes in strength training with running. Now that I have my first race down, I am excited to use this for future races!

It’s great because you enter in the distance or race you’re training for, it gives you the options of a 5K, 10K, 13.1 Half or 26.2 Full. Then each day you can get notifications on what you should be doing. It takes the guess work out of how far to run and how many times per week. I like that it also splits up my run with directions similar to run/walk intervals.

Here's my recent tracking for the Star Wars 10K at Disneyland Resort. Here’s my recent tracking for the Star Wars 10K at Disneyland Resort.

Graphs, Map & Speed Tracking

I love graphs, they offer a great visual to any statistical information. And since I am not a numbers person, seeing a graph that charts my speed and maps my run, it helps me out. When I’m out for a long run, I like to see how my pace looked overall. It shows it green, yellow, orange, and red, indicating the speed. It will also plot out your mileage points, which is great. You can read more about my race at the Star Wars 10K, too!

I really hope that you enjoyed my thoughts! I’d love to hear if you’ve tried Nike+ Running!

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Blogorail Loop is The Disney Point!

What are your favorite fitness apps? Comment below and let’s get moving together!

Spread Magic

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop – Sparks of Magic – Nike+ Running (You are here!)

2nd Stop – The Disney Point – MyFitnessPal

3rd Stop – Adventure in the Great Wide Somewhere – FitBit

runDisney Star Wars Inaugural Marathon Weekend

runDisney Star Wars Inaugural Marathon Weekend

First bib picture at the Health Expo!

First bib picture at the Health Expo!

I’ve got to tell you, participating in the Inaugural Star Wars Marathon Weekend was absolutely amazing. I ran my FIRST ever 10K race, which also happens to be the longest distance race I’ve ever participated in. Not only that, this was my first runDisney event and I was embarking on this adventure by my lonesome, but gratefully my mom and 3 daughters there to chEAR me on at the finish line! 

Just to give you an idea of the process, I thought I’d share my experience as a newbie. Running is nothing new to me,  I was a track and field athlete since I was around five years old competing for over 10 years until injury my junior year. The biggest change now (besides my body being totally different after five kids) is that I am running distance, as opposed to sprints. I had no endurance in high school and I just wanted to go fast. Now I am all about pacing myself and just enjoying the course. I love running. Sometimes I dread physically getting ready for a run, for whatever reason (usually because it’s freezing cold in the morning), but I truly love it. It’s a great stress reliever and it makes me happy. I’m pretty sure my old HS track coaches would be proud, because I haven’t run this far (at one time) in my life!

I jumped at the chance to be part of this epic moment in runDisney history, as the magic and the force collided for the first time. Since this would be my entrance into running “in costume,” I opted for something simple, yet fun. I did not want to just run in a dri-fit shirt and pants, so I added some sparkle and picked up an R2D2 shirt. I know that next race I will not be wearing any cotton, it wasn’t uncomfortable, but it wasn’t comfortable either. Thankfully I did not end up with blisters or weird rashes. I mean, it was just a 10K but still. I probably should have read more about race gear prior to running, not after. Ha!

When the Force and Magic collide. R2D2 Mickey.

When the Force and Magic collide. R2D2 Mickey.

I saw a few of my awesome blogging buddies prior to the race, they graciously gave me a heads up on the race itself and where I needed to be. Happily, I ran into another friend, Jen from Real Mom of SFV, and we both were placed in Corral D, so we got to chat before the big race began. I’m so grateful that we found each other! I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, and it’s always extra magical to have a friend! Thanks, Jen!

I don’t have anything to compare this experience to, but I can say that I had so much fun!! We ran behind the scenes of both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure, which was awesome! Starting the race in the morning was a bit chilly, but it was motivating to just keep going.

I kept a decent pace throughout and took some pictures along the way. If you know me personally, you probably can imagine that I literally cried as I ran up Main Street U.S.A., towards Sleeping Beauty Castle. I seriously couldn’t help it. I was overwhelmed with excitement and joy. I was so happy to finally be part of the runDisney experience (Side note: After getting really sick in 2012, I lost my registration fees and couldn’t run the Disneyland 1/2. Since then, I’ve been eager to lace up and be part of a race). So grateful that I was able to secure registration for this great weekend!! I cannot wait to do another!

Here are my newbie tips!

  1. Research race gear prior to the race! Don’t wear new shoes day of, break them in.
  2. Join a Facebook group for your race – you can ask questions and get insight from experienced runners
  3. TRAIN TRAIN TRAIN! It really should be obvious (and probably #1 on the list, but let’s be honest, costumes are important). If you have never run before, heed the warning and train well. Don’t put it off because your legs and body will pay for it… days later.
  4. Stay away from cotton – yikes
  5. Get your body ready through your diet – there are so many places to get info on proper fuel, but check with your doctor and make sure you’re eating enough calories as you train and try to stay away from excess sugar!
  6. During the race, there are photographers (And characters) everywhere! Smile or don’t, but know you’re being captured! 🙂 You can also stand in line to meet characters.
  7. Remember you’re usually running at the crack of dawn or before, so give your family a heads up. They’ll need to dress accordingly! 
  8. Make a plan for a meeting place after the race with your family and friends. It’s really chaotic and if your family is unfamiliar with the Parks, this is a must.
  9. Review the race booklet given to you at bib check in, it’s a great resource and answers seriously ever question!
  10. HAVE FUN!

I’m so excited to share my images (above – it is NOT easy to run and snap a photo, after my first attempt on Main Street U.S.A., I did not attempt it again) and the starting video (below)! Enjoy!

  • Did I mention that I met and chatted with the fabulous Leslie Kay, the creator of DisneyBound? I noticed her walking in front of me, it was her sweet tattoos and the awesome new Lost Boys plaid shirt she was wearing that prompted me to call out to her! She’s super sweet and if you haven’t already check out DisneyBound and GetFitWith Disney on Tumblr. So much inspiration and fun!! Leslie teams up with Disney often sharing her creative vision! 
  • Also, in another image I am with Jordan Poblete, Editor in Chief of DisneyExaminer! If you recall, I am their official Mommy Blogger and it’s always nice to catch up and see my friends in real life! Kudos to Jordan and the DE team that finished the Star Wars Half!!

How about you? Have you participated in a runDisney race before? Share you’re experience in the comments!