Tuesday, April 30, 2013

New Additions to runDisney announced

I’m sure most of you have heard and seen the buzz on social media that runDisney has yet again come up with a new challenge!

After seeing the successful sell out registration from the “Inaugural Dumbo Double Dare”, “Disneyland 10k”, and the new “Dopey Challenge” and “Minnie Mouse 10k”, they have officially added the “Enchanted 10k” to Princess weekend along with the" “Glass Slipper Challenge” for competing in both the 10k and half marathon!

The addition to the 10k will result in an extended Princess weekend and extra day of the Fit for a Princess expo.  Updated pricing information has not yet been released.  The 2014 runDisney Princess half marathon weekend will take place February 20-23.

Also announced is the release of a new Coast to Coast race challenge – runners who participate in Disneyland’s Tinker Bell half marathon AND Walt Disney World’s Princess half marathon are eligible to receive a pink version of the Coast to Coast medal, complete with a pink lanyard

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                              Source – runDisney blog

Per the runDisney blog, registration for the Princess half marathon will open on June 11th on the runDisney website.  A limited number of participants will have the chance to register for both the Tinker Bell and Princess half marathon at that time.  If you miss out on registering for the Tinker Bell half marathon early, you will get a second chance when registration opens on July 9th. 

You can sign up to receive a reminder to notify you when registration opens at both events here.

Will you be participating in the new Glass Slipper Challenge and/or the Coast to Coast challenge?  What do you think of the medal?

Until next time,

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Warrior Dash recap

After I finished with the Boulder Dash 5k, I raced home, did a quick change, and headed to Warrior Dash with my friends Sharon and Leia in tow.

Getting there was pretty simple…we found out a couple of months ago that the site of the race was changed, which ended up making it closer so we were happy about that!  Parking was off-site and I had been forwarned by a friend that the line waiting to the bus was a little long.  Little did we know that was the start of a less than stellar race experience.

When we got to the event site, we checked in, got our numbers, chip timers, shirts, and helmets and rushed to check our bags.  We stood to the side for a couple of minutes and finally flagged down one of the volunteers working in the tent to let them know that we needed to check our bags.  He looked at us and started helping other people!  So we ended up tossing our bags behind the table into the tent as our heat was starting!

The course itself was fun.  We went about a mile before we got to the first obstacle – the Barricade Breakdown.  We did a lot of wading through small ponds, and the obstacles were a lot of fun.  The one that gave me the most trouble was the Giant Cliffhanger -

(photo taken from Warrior Dash website)
I got to the top but for the life of me could not throw my foot over the edge.  A similar obstacle like this at the Biggest Loser Run/Walk Challenge got me, too.  I ended up having to come back down and go around, which I was not happy about.

Some of the other obstacles we went through included the Deadweight Drifter, a floating barricade that we had to climb over – Storming Normandy, which was a belly crawl through mud under barbed wire – and some that they ‘invented’ with the land, such as a free repel down a rock faced incline (one of my favorites)

Probably the most well known obstacle of Warrior Dash is the Warrior Roast – you jump over a couple of rows of fires.
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And the final obstacle was a long, knee deep sludgey mud pit.  It was like quicksand trying to make your way through it!  I saw one guy “swimming” on his back.  He was covered from head to toe…even his face!!  After we made it through there we crossed the finish line!  We were warriors!
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We got our medals and a small cup of water.  Here’s where the race went downhill for us.

Once we were done, we obviously needed to rinse off.  The “Warrior Wash” was a lake that you had to walk outside of the event space to get to.  So we did that, walked back to the gear check tent to get our bags, and then we needed to change.  There were no changing tents, so we took turns holding up towels for each other to get the muddy clothes off, wipe down with baby wipes, and put clean clothes on.  Once we finished, we stood in line for close to TWO HOURS to get on a bus to take us back to the car.  I was absolutely miserable.  Being that I had run two races and hadn’t had much time in between to eat, I was getting overheated, so Sharon and Leia stood in line for the bus (thank you sooo much ladies) while I sat in the shade near the bus loading zone. 

Warrior Dash really dropped the ball on this race.  With all the mud races that are out there nowadays, I seriously doubt I will run this one again.  I loved the girl time, but the pre and post race experience just killed it for me.  It was by far the worst organized race I have ever been to.

Have you run a race that just wasn’t up to par?

Until next time,

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Monday, April 22, 2013

2013 Boulder Dash 5k recap

This race was really a last minute decision for me.  With Warrior Dash being moved from May 4th to April 13th, it conflicted with Boulder Dash, which was the first official 5k that I ever ran.  Part of me wanted to run it, but the other part wasn’t sure how my body would handle two races in one day.  I asked J if his company was a sponsor this year, and he got me all signed up.  Oh boy…here goes nothing!

I did my normal night before the race routine and laid out my clothes…only this time I had two sets ready to go -


I decided to also include the “Running Over Battens” virtual run with the Boulder Dash.  I ran those 3.1 miles for little miss Olivia!


This race starts about a mile from our house and had a start time of 9 a.m., so it was nice not to have to get up super early to go run!  I believe I left the house at 8 so I would have enough time to park, get my number, and hang out.


I was missing my running buddies at the race this year! Ali, Sharon, and Shannon, I wish you were here!

I still had some time to kill so I walked around a bit, listened to the DJ, ate my pre-race bar, and stretched.  My quads were still a little sore from Crossfit so I was trying to stretch out as much as I could.

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I learned last year that this race doesn’t have a timing mat at the beginning of the race, so I got as close to the front as I could without imposing on the faster runners.


The race started a few minutes late but nothing major.  I always stay to the right for my run/walk intervals.  I haven’t been consistently running since the Publix half, so I wasn’t sure how well I would do.  We went up Ronald Reagan Parkway and made our way into the quarry.  It’s a gravel road, which I’m not a huge fan of since I’m always afraid of twisting my ankle or knee, but I made it out okay.  Saw this cute sign as we entered -


This race was not a good one for me.  My still sore quads combined with rocks in my shoes and not constantly training caused me to do more walking than I normally would have.  I was 2 minutes slower than last year!!!  I was soooo incredibly mad at myself, but at the same time it’s my own fault.  We live and learn from our races.


Once I finished, I gave them my chip off my bib and made my way up to the water station, which was being manned by J’s company, Hansgrohe.  I knew a couple of the guys that were working it so I stopped to say hello and then chatted with his boss for a few.  Ran up to get my race shirt and hurried to my car…I had to get home and changed for my next race – Warrior Dash!  Little did I realize that my not so great race day was going to get worse…look for that recap later this week!

Have you ever done worse in a race that you’ve run before?

Until next time,

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Foodie Friday – “Pocket Bread”

I am so excited that spring has FINALLY decided to show up and summer is right around the corner!

Growing up, I remember always having a dish my mom referred to as “Pocket Bread”.  This was one of my absolute favorite dishes I looked forward to and I still love making it today.

Here are the ingredients you will need -

*Flat Iron Steak (you could also use a London Broil)
*Salt and Pepper
*Garlic Powder and/or minced garlic
*Worchestershire sauce (I use the low sodium)
*Dale’s marinade (also use the low sodium)
*red wine
*your choice of pita bread (white, whole wheat, onion, etc)
*low fat sour cream

First, cube the steak into small pieces or strips. 

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Put them in a large Ziploc bag.  Add the salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, Worchestershire sauce, Dale’s, and red wine.  I don’t have any exact measurements as I just pour however much I feel is enough into the bag, depending on how much meat I have.  Mix it all together and put in the fridge to marinate for at least 4 hours (I usually do this the night before)

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When you’re ready to cook, heat up a skillet or wok on medium heat and pour the meat and marinade into the skillet.  Cook until the meat is still a little wet and almost all of the liquid is gone.

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Cut your pita bread in half and pop them in the microwave to get them soft.  Open up the bread and smear sour cream on the inside.

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Fill it with your meat, lettuce, tomato (I forgot these at the store), and cucumbers and enjoy!

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Please let me know what you guys think of this recipe if you decide to try it.  I hope you like it as much as I do!

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Tomorrow I’m doing the Dirty Girl Mud Run with my friend Jessica and her sister.  Look for a recap next week!  I also have some pretty good giveaways coming up so stayed tuned :)

Have a fantastic weekend!

Until next time,

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Thoughts of Boston

I’m just getting around to writing this out today as yesterday I was glued to the TV and social media for most of the day and night, and I finally have time to sit down and get all my thoughts out.

Yesterday morning started out like any other Monday morning.  I woke up, pondered calling out sick but ultimately got out of bed, got ready for the day, and headed into work.  Once I got a few things out of the way, I turned on the live stream for the Boston Marathon.  I tweeted to those who I knew were running and wished them the best of luck.  It was so amazing to me to watch the elite runners take on this prestigious course.  I chatted with friends and coworkers about the runners and knew that this was an amazing feat for anyone to take on and conquer.

After the award ceremony, my live feed went dark, so I closed out of the window.  Little did I know a couple of hours later, the Boston Marathon would forever be changed.

My Twitter feed began to blow up with reports of explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.  I quickly pulled up CNN on my computer and found the live feed and was absolutely horrified at what I was looking at.  It truly looked like a war scene. 

Unfortunately I don’t really have anyone at work that I could talk to about this event, so I relied on my friends Jody and AJ to chat with online, as well as with my Twitter followers.  I fought back tears as I sat at my desk and watched them replay the explosions over and over again, getting ghostly chills all over my body every time I watched it.

I have only been a runner for a little over a year, but I understand what a big deal it is to get to the Boston Marathon.  If you aren’t familiar with races, the most common way to run is just to pay your registration fee and sign up.  Some of the larger races, such as the Peachtree Road Race, have a lottery system where participants are chosen at random.  You have to qualify to be in the Boston Marathon.  Based on your age group, there is a designated time in which you have to finish a marathon to even qualify to run in Boston.  Another way of running the Boston Marathon is by fundraising, and we aren’t talking a couple hundred dollars.  People raise THOUSANDS of dollars for charities that are near and dear to their hearts, and they run in honor of those involved with these charities.

The camaraderie I saw on Facebook and Twitter from runners throughout the world was heartwarming.  No matter how fast or slow we are, whether we are newbies to the sport or have been competing and running for years.  None of that mattered – we came together as a community…as a family…in support of the Boston Marathon runners and spectators. 

It angers me so much that someone could have that much hatred in their body to want to injure innocent people who are doing nothing more than cheering on friends and family members as they crossed the finish line of one of the most proud moments of their running career.  And to take away what should have been an amazing experience away from runners who have trained for years to make it to this point, and those that have worked so hard to raise money for their charities, is very troubling to me.

But runners are resilient.  The city of Boston is resilient.  This senseless act of violence will not stop us from toeing up to the start line and crossing the finish line with our heads and hands held high.  Whoever was behind this cowardly act has not won.  Thousands of runners across the country wore race shirts today in honor of the tragic event that happened in Boston, including myself -
Photo: Showing my support for Boston

Many more ran various distance and times in honor of those affected in Boston.  My knee has been tight ever since my double race day so I have yet to run for them, but I do plan to honor them on Saturday during the Dirty Girl Mud Run.

I am very thankful that those I knew who were running were unharmed, as well as their friends and family.  I am keeping those spectators that were not so fortunate in my thoughts and will carry them with me on many future runs.

I apologize if this post is kind of all over the place, but I wanted to get my feelings out, and since most of my readers are fellow runners, I figured what better place than my blog.  Much love and virtual hugs to you all.

Until next time,

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Friday, April 12, 2013

Foodie Friday – Ebelskivers

“Ebel-what?” you might be saying to yourself.  These little beauties might have a crazy name, but they are crazy good!

When I was little I remember going up to Minnesota to visit my grandparents, and at least once during our trip my grandmother would make these for breakfast.  Visiting them was the only time that I got to have ebelskivers, and it was one of many dishes that she made that I always looked forward to.

This year for Christmas my grandparents got me my own Ebelskiver maker! I was so excited to try it out.

electric ebelskiver maker
Source - Williams-Sonoma

What is an ebelskiver?  They are traditional Danish pancakes that are in the shape of a sphere.  Think of them as a hybrid between an American pancake and a popover – they are solid like a pancake but light and fluffy like a popover, and often times they are filled with a jam, jelly, or applesauce.

Traditionally they are cooked on the stove top in a pan similar to the one above, but the pan is in the shape of a circle.  This is the type my grandmother still uses, but she bought us the electric one..it’s a little easier to control.

I realize that not everyone will have the appliance needed to make this recipe, but it might peak your interest enough to check them out!

Here is the basic recipe I got from the booklet that came with the maker -

*1 egg
*1 cup all-purpose flour
*3/4 cup milk
*1 tablespoon sugar
*2 tablespoons vegetable oil
*1 tablespoon baking powder
*1/2 teaspoon salt

In a bowl, mix all the ingredients together, breaking up any lumps.  Then slowly add water until the batter is not too think yet not too thin.  The thicker the batter, the thicker the pancakes will be.  Pour batter into the Ebelskiver Filled Pancake Maker, about halfway full.

Then, add a small amount of whatever filling you want.  The ones that I made have apple butter and strawberry jam in them.  Some other favorites are applesauce and fresh fruit, and we even made some dessert ones filled with Nutella and Hershey’s Kisses!

Once you’ve added the filling, add a little more of the batter to the maker, just until it reaches the top of the divet.

When you see them start to bubble at the top, it’s time to flip them.  They sell special little tools to do this with, but you don’t need them…a long wooden skewer works great.  Just don’t use any metal utensils as it will scratch the non-stick surface.


Cook another couple of minutes, flip them back over to make sure they are cooked, then pop them onto a plate, cover with syrup and/or powdered sugar (my grandpa like Grand Marnier on his..I like his style!) and serve while hot!  The recipe makes about 27 ebelskivers.

These are such an easy and fun food to cook and eat!

Tomorrow I am doing a double race day….I am running the Boulderdash 5k near my house in the morning. This was my first official 5k when I got into running, so I’m anxious to see how my time is, assuming my quads stop being sore from my WOD at Crossfit on MONDAY!!! (Yes, they still hurt).  THEN…I run home, shower, and head to Warrior Dash with Sharon!  We’ve been looking forward to this race for a long time, so we’re really excited to do it.  And you can bet there will be race recaps on both!

Have you ever heard of ebelskivers?  Have you tried them before?  Have you run more than one race in a day?

Have a great weekend!

Until next time,

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Hawaii Day 3 – Trip to Kilauea

Wednesday morning we got up bright and early, hit up a Starbucks, and began the long drive to Kilauea Volcano National Park.


From Kona, the drive was about 2.5 hours.  I think I might have fallen asleep a time or two, which J is used to when we take long rides in the car.  We passed quite a few coffee stands and kicked ourselves for stopping at Starbucks when there was fresh Kona coffee we could have enjoyed!  Oh well…lesson learned.


It was so beautiful driving along the coast and through the small towns on our way.  One thing that I wanted to see while in Hawai’i was a black sand beach, and we passed one on the way to the volcano!  You know we had to stop and check it out.

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Punalu’u is probably Hawai’i’s most well known black sand beach.  The sand is black because of the constant volcanic activity on the island.  You can also find green sand beaches (we’re saving that adventure for our next visit).  This particular beach is also a haven for the green sea turtle to bask on the beach.  As badly as I wanted to take a piece of this unique beach with me, I left the sand behind.


We hopped back in the car and continued on to Kilauea.  When we got there, we stopped to check out the visitors center and then headed up toward the Jaggar Museum.  Here you have a great look at the crater and can even see the steam and smoke coming out.

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Inside the museum is tons of information, pictures, videos, and ‘artifacts’ from the volcano.  There was even a suit that was worn by a scientist that got too close to the lava and actually got severely burned.  It was interesting to walk around and check everything out.

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After browsing around the museum for a bit, we headed back down to check out some of the other parts of the park.  On our way we passed the steam vents and got a different view of the crater -

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Next we came up on Thurston’s Lava Tube.   This tube was formed hundreds of years ago and was discovered by a local newspaper publisher, Lorrin Thurston.  It’s hard to believe that lava once flowed through where we were walking!


Once we finished walking through the lava tube, we stopped at the Devastation Trail.  It used to be a dense rain forest, but when Kilauea erupted in 1959, it completed wiped out the area. 

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It’s so crazy to be walking through a tree-filled forest and then you come to this.

After checking out the Devastation Trail, we began to head to the end of the road, down towards the coast.  It was a long and sometimes winding road, but the views were spectacular.

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Check out how thick that lava flow was!!

When we made it down to the parking area, we didn’t realize it was another 1/2 mile walk to where the eruption of 2003 left hardened lava over the road.  It was insane to see that!

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Even though we weren’t exactly equipped to walk on the lava, we ventured out to explore a bit, being careful of large holes and jagged edges.  It was windy, but the sun was really beating down on us!

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We began the longish walk back to the car and headed out of the park.  We will be back to explore it more, and hopefully even see a lava flow into the ocean! (It was about a 5 mile walk across the hardened lava to get there and we weren’t dressed appropriately to do so)

Once we left, we stopped by Volcano Winery, where we sampled their collection of wines.  I really enjoyed them and bummed that you cannot buy them locally, and it’s super expensive to have it shipped here…so if any of my friends visit, PLEASE bring me back a bottle or two…I will pay you!


We headed back to Kona, where I took a nice nap in the car…it had been a long day!  We showered, chilled out in the hotel room for awhile, then walked down Alli Drive to the Big Island Running Company.  C’mon…I’m a runner..I had to check out the local store!  It was very small, but had a great selection of shoes, clothes, and running accessories.  I picked up a shirt, a type of fuel I hadn’t seen back home before, and a pair of socks.  My smart self decided to wear my new Sperrys without socks on our walk to the store, and in that 1/2 mile rubbed blisters on both feet.  Yes, I looked ridiculous wearing the socks, but the way I was walking without them was even worse.

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We were also in just the right place to watch the sun set over the ocean.  Someone blew the conch shell and we looked for the “green flash” (a very quick spot of intense green light on the horizon), but didn’t see it.  The sunset was beautiful though.


After the sunset we walked (well…I hobbled) back to the hotel and we drove back over to Kona Brewing Company for dinner.  Yes, I know we can get pizza anywhere, but not Kona Brewing Company pizza!  Pizza and beer was a nice way to end the day.


Being that we had been awake since close to 5 a.m., we crashed when we got back to the hotel, but pretty excited about our trip to Mauna Kea the next day!

Stay tuned for more of our Hawaiian vacation!

Until next time,

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