Disney Glass Slipper Challenge – 10k Recap!

Here it goes…

After getting home at midnight on Monday and a 6am wake up for work, it has been tough getting back in the swing of things and even harder to get on here and put the whole experience into words.  So here I am..about to attempt to put such an amazing, fun-filled, exhausting and memorable week into words.

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This was the 2nd time my mom and I took on the Disney Princess half marathon but the first time we took on the Disney Glass Slipper Challenge.  I have been battling some tibia tendonitis and have not been able to run longer than 7 1/2 miles since Thanksgiving so it is safe to say that my nerves were pretty high just thinking about the upcoming races.  I knew the 10k was doable and was probably my best shot at placing so I decided to make that the race of the week and really give it all I had.  And if I made it out alive then I guess I would attemt 13.1 miles the next day…

imageAnd a pre-race Southwest Burger was exactly what I needed…wanted… in order to make it happen. I usually do pizza or pasta before race day but vacation time and Disney is all about having fun and doing what you want even if you have races on the schedule.

A couple things that DID stay consistent with my normal pre race routine were…

1.) COFFEE…There was no way we were getting through a 2:45am wake up without a couple of these.

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2.) Pre race Selfies..never on a pirate bed though!

image 3.) Banana and almond butter sandwich..the best sandwich a person could ever have.

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And once all that is done, MAKE SURE TO CATCH THE LAST 4am SHUTTLE BUS TO THE RACE! And then when you get there…make sure to snap a picture with your Mom because despite all the nerves, these moments don’t happen often, so when they do…capture them and hold them for as long as you can!

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Lets talk about the race.  I started out strong and held that comfortable yet difficult pace up until mile 4.  The excitement of leading the race in addition to the beauty of running through Epcot was helping me remain strong throughout mile 4 despite some tired legs.  By mile 5, I was really starting to feel it and as soon I saw the second female coming up behind me, it became a fight against tired legs as well as some negative thoughts.  I did my best to hang on but it just did not happen.  I finished strong and still can’t think of anything I would have done differently.  I can’t say I started off too fast but I guess I just couldn’t hold it.  Though it is easy to get wrapped up in the “what ifs”, you need to step back and celebrate simply crossing the line.

imageI will proudly take 3rd place and am beyond happy with my performance.

imageAfter the race, my calves completely cramped up and I had little time to celebrate my finish becasue the pain lead to immediate stress and fear of the half marathon I had in less than 24 hours!

But once again, even in the midst of stress and pain..don’t forget to capture the moment when you meet up with your Mom after the race.

imageAlso, don’t forget to raid your free goodie bag to find some random but delicious snacks..

imageLemon Zest Luna bar and some Krave cereal..sure, why not

These races are always well-organized and with the 10k only being 10,00o runners (no big deal)..the bathroom line was super short and almost non-existent.  As all you runner know, that’s a rare and special moment. And for you hardcore racers like us, it means you can stay clear the woods and start the race with some dignity 😉

I didn’t plan on splitting this recap into two separate 10k and Half Marathon posts but seeing as I’ve spent an hour just talking about the 10k, I think I need some sleep before tackling the half marathon.  I now know why it takes bloggers a few days to post race recaps..they are no joke! You just want to spill all your emotions into the post but it’s exhausting trying to find the right words to describe all the emotions on race day. It is hard enough just to tame them let alone describe them!

So on that note I will end it with a picture describing the hour I had between getting back to the room and the pool/hot tub opening at 9am.

imageJust some classy ice buckets on the toilet in the hotel room..haha

Just Kidding. I will end it with how my mom and I celebrated 6.2 done and 13.1 to go.

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Hello from Disney!

Hello from Disney..and more specifically, the “Pirate Room”

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Yup.  We thought paying a little extra would land us an ‘upgraded’ room, but we should have known that here at Disney, an upgrade means more animated.  So here we are..just two adults hanging out in pirate beds 😉

And I mean that literally…we have been napping and watching T.V for the past 2 hours and will probably call it bedtime as soon as I am done here.  The pouring rain and the early morning flight put a bit of a damper on our plan to hit Epcot tonight.

However, the rain did hold up so we could get a short run in around the resort.

imageI forgot how awesome it is to run in just one layer and without worrying about frost bite taking over my toes and fingers.  I have been wanting to run in the warm weather for so long so I will not complain about the heat..but I will say that this long-sleeve was not the smartest decision.

imageThe high winds convinced me that it was chilly… and I am not sure why the ‘YOU ARE IN FLORIDA’  logic didn’t kick in.

Before I sail away in my pirate ship for a good night’s sleep before an early morning rise for Crossfit, I must talk about some great finds at Trader Joe’s that made packing meals for this trip  extremely easy.

imageIf you have ever been to Disney, you are well aware that, although there are some amazing restaurant options, they are not always healthy or cheap.  Last year I individually sealed and froze 16 meals and ate them despite how soggy and gross they were.  This year I made it MUCH easier on myself and my sanity.  Instead of packing individual meals, I just picked up a variety of nuts, greens, fruits and protein to have on hand to avoid eating out every day.   A carton of liquid egg whites, a bag of oats, some cacao nibs and goji berries is less than $25 and will give me a fulfilling and hearty breakfast everyday.  That’s a little better than a $20 one-time breakfast buffet…

4 more days until the Disney Princess Challenge calls for a #TBTuesday

imageTime to rest up. Goodnight 🙂

7 Miles Never Felt so Brutally Awesome

Happy Hump Day!

For all you workers..two days until the weekend!

For all you teachers..two days until vacation!

For all you Disney Princess 10k and Half Marathon runners…10/11 days until race day!

There is a lot to be excited about over here!

What’s also very exciting but not too enjoyable was this run..

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It may not look like anything special, especially not the pace, but it is huge for me!  Since November, I have been battling some posterior tibial tendonitis.  My running has been limited however, I am thankful that it hasn’t been an issue in yoga and crossfit.  Since January I have been working my mileage back up but I haven’t been able to get past 6 miles without some pain.  And all this snow is NOT helping.  Running through the slippery and slushy snow just exacerbates the pain because stability and form fly out the window when your just trying to move through the slush.  On a positive note, my hips are getting much stronger with each snowy run!  Today was the first run in a couple of weeks with clear roads and NO PAIN.  My legs were super sore from yesterdays 3 mile morning run and afternoon WOD consisting of 200 double unders, 80 box jumps and a strength component,  but my mind wanted to make this run worthwhile.  These days my runs just go as far as my tendon will let it and today, it was willing to go far. My sore legs had to call it at 7.35 but I am confident/hopeful that a rested body could handle longer. Which is kind of needed seeing as I have a half marathon in 11 days!

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It wasn’t a bad day but it certainly wasn’t a good day in terms of my body feeling strong.  Regardless, I gave it all I had and am happy I pushed through the soreness!

I wish I also had a quote that said, “On good days I eat bananas, and on bad days I eat them covered in almond butter and dark chocolate”…

imageI just had to snap a pic of the casual plate of frozen bananas that I always have on hand.  If there is one thing I never get sick of, it’s bananas.  Especially frozen bananas with almond butter.  Every single day after school and before my workout I have a frozen banana with some almond butter.  It is a perfect and delicious pre-workout.  You get your carbs, your fats, and your protein without being too full. And as you can see by the little piece just rolling around, I also sneak little bites with some dark chocolate when the sweet tooth attacks 🙂 I haven’t attempted banana ice cream which is just frozen bananas blended together to form an ice cream consistency but I have a feeling that will make its ways into my desserts soon..

Another thing that never gets old is steak..especially topped with sautéed mushrooms and onions.

imagePart of me felt bad that I made such a delicious meal while my boyfriend was sitting in a cold snow plow BUT the steaks were going to go bad so it just had to be done.  Tip: one way to score leftover steak is to overcook the other person’s steak so that they don’t want it anymore 🙂 Steak two nights in a row sounds good to me!

Well I think that is enough running and food talk for now! Have a great Wednesday and congratulations for making it halfway through the work week!

Some Exciting Life Additions

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One of the many Monday morning thoughts.   Except once again, I can’t complain about this Monday because it is now the second Monday in a row where we have had a snow day.  With February vacation in just 5 days, this day off is definitely not needed.  But then again, I can’t complain about sleeping until 10 and being in pajamas for the majority of the day.

It has been some time since I’ve posted last because this past week has been extremely busy BUT very exciting!  A couple new things have come along…

imageA new member to the family and a soon-to-be new running buddy.  Her name is Mei and she is absolutely beautiful and perfect.  She is only 4 months so we are going to let her little bones grow before taking her out for runs but she is certainly going to be one hell of running buddy.  Gosh, I hope I don’t slow her down!

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She may be younger and more energetic but Cooper still knows how to hold down the house and can put up a good fight when Mei is being a feisty one.

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..And this right here sums it all up.  Ha ha

And since these past two weeks have been all about new things – new car, new pup..I am happy to announce I also have a new job.  It is more like another job but new fits the theme.  I am happy to announce that in addition to my 6th grade teaching job, I am also the head varsity women’s lacrosse coach for the town that I teach in.  Even better…it’s the same team I once played for.  The thought of my schedule being even more crazy than it already is is a bit intimidating but I am beyond excited to work with a great group of girls and really take the team to a new level.  I can’t wait to build a team with strength, endurance, trust, confidence and skill.

When I think about the type of coach I want to be, my crossfit coach definitely comes to mind.  She is blunt, she is harsh, and she is loud but she CARES.  She believes in her athletes and sometimes that means yelling at them to step it up.   It may not always be easy to hear, but it is always what I need to hear.

I write this not only because it describes the trusting relationship I hope to have with  my players but because it is what pulled me through one of the toughest mentally workouts this week.  Mid workout, I failed a clean and from there it was downhill.  The weight was doable, I had already done a couple successfully.  But with just one failed attempt, I was mentally defeated.  My personality and mental defeat do not mix well.  I could have/wanted to just drop some weight and cruise through the workout but my coach did not give that as an option.  She had me step back and clear my head but most important, she just trusted in me.  She knew I could finish the workout with that weight despite the struggle and mental frustration.  And with that trust, I was able to successfully clean two more reps.

All in all, I hope to be the coach that instills perseverance, trust and confidence in each player.  As a coach, you can teach your players all the skills in the world, but without confidence, without drive, without determination, without perserverance…those skills are purposeless.

On that note, I hope every takes on the work week strong!

Life is Testing my Blog Words…

Funny how I ended last night’s post with the words “sometimes things shake up your schedule and you just have to roll with” and then when my schedule was shaken up this morning, I did not handle it as well as I wrote it.  Yup, that must be ‘reality’ checking in on me and making sure I am practicing what I preach.  I can’t say I initially “rolled with it” seeing as I was pretty annoyed that I rolled out of bed at 5:15 despite my two-hour school delay to make it to 6am crossfit…only to find that they don’t have 6am crossfit on Tuesday mornings. I was pretty annoyed and wasn’t sure if I should just drive to a gym to workout seeing as I already had coffee and a little breakfast in me.  But I was not going to pay another $10 just to put my banana and coffee to use so I went home, took a little power nap and then suited up for a short run outside.  A mile into my run I had to head back home to grab my face mask because 4 degree weather can really sting the face. I really should start checking things before I start… like the schedule and temperature

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So, did I roll with the scheduling issue this morning. Kinda.  I managed to get in a nice morning run and I still managed to make it to crossfit this evening to WOD it up so everything worked out. But was rolling with it easier said than done – yup.  I had to remind myself that it was just a small mixup and I will simply have to adjust my schedule later in the day…and accept that the extra hour of sleep I lost is really not important.

So despite a rough start, everything worked itself out and I still managed to whip up a pretty delicious breakfast.

imageSautéed spinach, mushrooms, onions, and butternut squash in coconut oil and topped with a fried egg.

All that being said, I will say it again..sometimes things shake up your schedule and you just have to roll with it. (lets hope I didn’t jinx myself for tomorrow too..)

Hope everyone had a great Tuesday! Hump Day Tomorrow! 🙂

#runlikeagirl

Andddd the Patriots did it again! What an exciting game.  The halftime show…not so much.  I never thought I would be so excited to see/hear Missy Elliot after my high school years.  I am really not sure why Katy Perry and dancing sharks singing California Girls was someone’s idea as the perfect form of entertainment in the middle of an event watched by almost every male in America…

Aside from the halftime show and the actual game, lets talk about the next best thing about the Superbowl…actually that would be food and since I didn’t have an exciting food platter lets skip to the next, NEXT best thing. Commercials. I loved the “Like a Girl” commercial and I love the #runlikeagirl trend thats going around Instagram even more.  So, in honor of the commercial and the empowerment of females in general, I posted this photo on Instagram because I am proud to say that I #runlikeagirl

imageI am also proud to say that I was finally able to run a nice 6 miler outside yesterday morning.

imageA couple of months ago, this run would have been considered short. But then setbacks happen – in this case, my tibia.  Though injuries are difficult to deal with, there is always a silver lining and a lesson learned with each injury. They keep me grounded and help me remember that no run should be taken for granted.  They remind me that sometimes the distance of the run is not what’s important, rather the ability to run is.  Being able to run, even if it’s just a mile is something to smile about.  So when I logged 6 miles yesterday, I was definitely all smiles.

I was also all smiles when my mom finished her 11 mile run at the same time I finished my run so we could go to a yoga class together.  It was her first yoga class so I don’t think she enjoyed it as much as I did, but I am happy she gave it a shot.  Like anything you try, the first time is always awkward and confusing.  The hardest part is sometimes just dealing with the insecurities of looking confused.  But once those first few embarassing classes are over, the language and the movements become familiar and you can focus on the practice and not on trying to look like you aren’t a total mess.  Though it is hard to fit yoga into my training between balancing crossfit and running, I try to get in a yoga class at least once a week.  I truly believe it has helped with preventing further injuries and helps heal my sore muscles.  Mobility and flexibility are crucial in running and are so frequently overlooked.

As for today’s workout, it pretty much involved shoveling all the snow or laying on the couch.  After last week’s snow storm, which started with shoveling and somehow turned into a snowy run with my fur friend, he now associates my shoveling outfit with a run.  I couldn’t let him down, so I furthered this association and took him on a snowy run around the block.  It didn’t take long before our eye lashes were becoming icicles so we called it quits pretty early.  It also didn’t take long before we returned to the couch.

imageI would have loved to get a solid lift in today but sometimes things shake up your schedule and you just got to roll with it!