Disney Glass Slipper Challenge – Princess Half Marathon Recap

Initially, I planned on writing one giant Glass Slipper Challenge race weekend recap but as I was writing about the Enchanted 10k, I realized that each race is different and amazing in their own way.  It just didn’t feel right to transition immediately into the Half Marathon after I ended a, what I thought was, a well written 10k recap.

So here we are with the second race of the Glass Slipper Challenge

The Disney Princess Half Marathon

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After the 10k, my legs felt shot.  I was proud of my 3rd place finish so I tried to remind myself that my game plan was to race the 10k hard and see what I had left in me for the half marathon.  Despite how annoyed I was with my legs not being very reliable, I was still on point with my game plan. But, let’s be honest.  I knew that was a terrible game plan from the start because I have a difficult time admitting when I should back down and rest.  Aside from some sun bathing and a short visit to Epcot, I spent a good portion of Saturday icing, rolling and living in my ProCompression socks…even if they DID NOT go with my outfit.  Saturday was a whirlwind of emotions, there were moments when my legs felt great and I had a surge of confidence and then there were moments when they did not feel so great and the nerves started kicking in.

One thing that really calmed me down was a couple of women my Mom and I met while waiting for our seat at our pre-race pizza place.  One lady was in a boot because she had tibia tendonitis but was still planning on running the half marathon.  I jumped with joy, not because she was injured, but because I finally met someone who was experiencing similar issues.  I asked her if she was worried about being able to finish.  She was so confident with her answer, “No, I know I will finish it just won’t be fast”…so casual and confident even though she was walking in a boot less than 10 hours away from a half marathon!! And here I am, a little sore but no tibia pain..and im freaking out!  Sometimes you just need to chat with other people to help you put everything in perspective.

With another 2:45 wake-up call around the corner, it was an early night for us.

Sunday morning looked very similar to Saturday…coffee, banana sandwiches, nerves and LOTS OF STRETCHING. In my opinion it was more of a ‘last minute attempt/plead for my legs to come back to life and not be sore’.

imageFunny story about my banana sandwich that did not happen on Saturday and was pretty unexpected.  I am walking onto the bus holding my fine dining plate..

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..and the bus driver says, “Ma’am please don’t bring food on the bus.”..now I understand that the majority of people are not runners and probably could not even tell you how long a 10k or half marathon is so I am used to the interesting comments, however, I am NOT going to just casually toss my breakfast in the trash and then go try to run 13.1 miles.  Luckily, Disney does a great job hiring kind and enthusiastic employees so we were able to agree that as long as I take my empty plate off the bus, I could bring it on. Scarfing down a sandwich didn’t seem like a desirable or wise pre-race move.

The morning was pretty funny/interesting in terms of my nerves.  I woke up feeling confident and just told myself, even if I have to walk half of the race, I WILL finish.  I began accepting the idea of having a very slow race, which is a hard acceptance for me.  Meanwhile, my mom was pretty nervous.  I kept reassuring her that she would do great because she always does fine.  Her training was much better than mine in terms of how many miles she has been logging (yup. my 59-year-old mom runs more than me. I am both impressed and slightly embarrassed) Also, SHE WASN’T EVEN SORE! However, as we started walking into the race, that confidence was sucked right out of me.  My calves were tight and sore which pretty much sent me into a panic.  I never felt more unsure of myself. Meanwhile, my mom was beginning to relax and the roles were reversed.  My response to all her positive comments was probably something negative and maybe not always in the nicest tone, I’ll blame the nerves for that, however, I do feel pretty bad…

imageEven though I have done this race before, I forgot how long the walk is to the Elite Corral.  Let’s just say, once the National Anthem starts playing, it is no longer a walk, it’s a run! I finally made it to the Elite corral and realized, wow that little run over here didn’t even hurt.  Could it be that walking hurts more than running?! Well my friends, that was just the case.

And now with a little confidence and a couple of minutes to spare before the start of the race, I managed to snap a picture of just how amazing this experience is aside from all the other nonsense that trickles through my crazy mind before a race.

imageFrom the second I crossed the start line, I promised myself that I would just have fun. And that is exactly what I did.  I kept a strong pace but I made sure to take in every moment.  I just kept flying through the miles pain-free and comfortable.  It felt amazing.  I did not care about my pace, but I knew it was pretty darn decent. I did not care about my place, but I knew I was up front. I just ran MY race.  I surprised myself with each mile.  I truly was on cloud nine.  I DID NOT expect to feel and do as good as I was doing.  I remember at mile 6 saying to myself “you are doing amazing, keep it up, you have what it takes to finish this strong”  I even surprised myself with that comment.  I am always so hard on myself and my performances.  I aim to be great at everything I try and rarely give myself enough credit for the small victories.  At about mile 10 I started feeling my legs wanting to slow but my pride in what I had done thus far was enough to keep me moving. I passed some security men on bicycles and turned to them to let them know that I was ‘very jealous of their means of transportation’.  I quickly put my ear buds back in so I did not catch their whole response but I did hear, “We are actually jealous of you…”.  At the time I thought to myself, ‘they must be crazy. what in the world could they be jealous of? Being tired? Still have to run 3 more miles?’ Looking back on it now, I still don’t know why they were jealous but I do know  that they were right, they should have been jealous.  I was given the opportunity to run through Disney.  I was just about to complete something I doubted only an hour prior. I had the ability to run 19.3 miles in two days.  I had the ability to run.  Yes.  That is something to be jealous of.  And something I should never take for granted.

And with that ability, I trucked through the last 3 miles to finish an amazing weekend with some solid times and amazing memories.

image10k – 40:22 and Half Marathon – 1:32.39

Scratch that. WE finished the weekend with some solid times and amazing memories.

imageI can’t thank her enough for booking this trip, for running this challenge, and for just being such an amazing person.

It is safe to say, we left Disney limping and with some pretty hefty bling.

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A Few Paleo Trial Runs

Happy Friday!  I thought this day would never come!

…and it almost was almost my last.  I don’t think the schools in the area expected the snow to come down as hard as it did because there were few delays despite the terrible conditions.  My little Honda Civic (yup, I still have that little thing because my new CRV had to be ordered..grrrr.) was sliding all over the road.  I have never been more relieved to get to school.

Before I embraced the snowy conditions, I did a Paleo breakfast trial run.  I start Monday so I wanted to prepare myself for new breakfast options and how long prep will take.  Majority of paleo the breakfast recipes that I see floating around Instagram and Paleo Cookbooks are vegetable omelette, frittata, avocado egg cups, and BACON….all of which are delicious, but I am more of sweet breakfast person rather than savory. SO, I gave my paleo breakfast a sweet twist.

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This right here, was perfect.  Paleo. check. Easy. check. Sweet. check.  I microwaved a small sweet potato for a few minutes, cut it up and sautéed the chunks with some onions while I whisked 2 eggs and 2 egg whites.  Poured the egg whites over the sweet potatoes and onions, added some cinnamon, some coconut flakes, some goji berries and scrambled it all togehter.  It reminded me of a Thanksgivingish savory and sweet breakfast.

I guess you could say I also did a Paleo lunch trial run but really it is just a sign that we are really lacking in the grocery department…

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It was a simply a lazy mix of everything I could find in the fridge.  Chopped up romaine, tuna, avocado and Goji berries for some crunch.  I may not have a Paleo salad dressing recipe created yet, however, I WILL be working on a Homemade Ketchup. That is one condiment, I CAN’T go without.  With some #paleoketchup searches on Instagram and a few google searches, I have found a solid selection of recipes that sound good and the process does not sound like an overwhelming science experiment.  I am all about quick, simple and delicious.  Especially when you go through ketchup as fast as I do.

It may have been a snowy ‘White Out’ over here but ProCompression was not on the same page.

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They are all about the ‘Blackout’ which is fine by me because I could use a new pair of black compression socks and a 30% discount.

Since I have already mentioned my breakfast and lunch for the day, I guess I should just finish off with dinner because it was another wonderful Crock pot creation.  Curry chicken with a side of Garlic Cauliflower Mash (recipe from nomnompaleo.com).  I just can’t seem to get enough of Indian food and Indian inspired meals these days.

Hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable Friday! Time to relax and catch up on T.V and sleep! 🙂

A Turkey and Ten Mile Filled Thanksgiving

My first Thanksgiving in Ithaca was simply perfect.

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Nothing like starting the day with a snowy 10-miler with this as the view. It was my first snowy run of the season and I hope this is a sign that it will be a great winter season for running. It was absolutely breath-taking. The snow flurries just added the perfect touch…I would say it felt like heaven but there is nothing heaven-like about those hills.

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The mid-20 degree weather was surprisingly not too cold. I actually ended up shedding that top layer as always…

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I think the sole purpose of that shirt is to add color to my pre-run pictures because it always ends up being ditched on the side of the road within 5 minutes.  I wonder how long it will be until someone else owns it…

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What did stay on for the entire run were those incredibly warm and stylish socks.  Bought them at Dick’s the night before and they pretty much made my run doable.  I put them right over my ProCompression socks and they kept my toes completely dry.  It was amazing.

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I was tempted to do 11 miles but the final 3 miles were up a massive hill (after a few previous hills) and that pretty much sealed the deal.  My legs were ready to be done.  So I called it at 10…exactly.

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Came back to the house to a warm burning fire and quickly fired up some eggs smeared in Nuttzo and an apple.  Solid pre-game to the phenomenal Thanksgiving meal.

All in all, Thanksgiving was wonderful and there are so many things I am thankful for day in and day out.  I don’t need Thanksgiving to make me realize that.  I just need an open road.  

When people ask me, “Why do you run?”..I always respond with “It’s my time to think. It is the only time in my crazy day where I can sift through my thoughts with a conscious mind.  It is my time to reflect on life. Reflect on my future.  Reflect on my past.  Reflect on a conflict  Reflect on the things I can do to make myself a better person

Why do you run?

What is the best gear for snowy runs?

Did you get a Thanksgiving run in?

Run and Rope Climbs

Yup. Just another fashionable start to the morning.

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If this style is wrong then I don’t want to be right.  I can’t help that I love my ProCompression socks and my favorite spandex to run in are capris.

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What? How did that get on here.  Guilty. Yup. This definitely was my Pandora station of choice and this is definitely the song that got me out the door.  Haha.  I typed  in 90’s Hip Hop (really digging a deeper hole here) and then 98 degrees popped up.  It was a given.  I had to do it.

I can confidently say that I completely embarassed myself before 6am even rolled around.  That’s pretty impressive.  Whats not so impressive was the length of my run, but that is totally okay.  Tonight’s Crossfit WOD is definitely not something I want to walk into with tired legs.

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Man that’s a good amount of double unders. My ProCompression socks are not only an essential fashion statement on my runs but I also wear them to many Crossfit trainings.  They help protect my shins from bar bruises, help with the blood flowing during double unders, and they are ESSENTIAL when doing rope climbs.  Not a fan of rope burn all around my ankles.

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Another essential part of training is a fueling pre-workout- and this is always my go to. Nothing beats a frozen banana smothered in NuttZo.

What’s your pandora station of choice?

What is your go-to pre workout meal?