Tuesday, February 23, 2016

19.3 magical miles!!

i have always LOVED disney && running it was even more magical than i could have imagined! i was nervous going into it because i have been battling a lot health wise lately but i did really well all things considered! i am going to start from the beginning && recap the whole amazing weekend && trip!!
we flew out to orlando pretty early on thursday morning so that i would be able to get to the expo nice && early. i am not big on flying but we got there with no issues. once we got to the magical express [[bus that took us to the hotel]] it was all magical from there. everyone was SUPER nice && friendly. i absolutely loved the whole experience. we got to our resort, pop century && checked in with no issues. in typical organizational fashion, i unpacked all of our stuff && then we headed to the expo.

i knew going into the expo that i would want to BUY ALL THE THINGS! && while i did get a lot of great stuff, i didn’t but every single thing i wanted because i would be broke! i picked up my packet && then it was time to shop. i saw the ariel new balance shoes && i REALLY wanted them! i had to think about it because they were expensive && we had the rest of the trip ahead of us. i waited too long && now i regret not getting them! anyway, there were lots of adorable shirts, headbands, shoes, the works! i got a few things && then i went over to the run disney merchandise. there was one cup that i really wanted but when i asked for it i was told they sold out in two hours. i was pretty bummed but i got a lot of great things && we were heading to magic kingdom next! plus on my way out michael noticed that jeff galloway was there! i got to chat with him, take a selfie, && have him sign my bib! his running plans have helped me through every one of my races so it was beyond amazing to meet him!!

while walking to the bus, i heard a woman talking about how crazy it is that things sold out so fast. i said “amen to that” && we started talking. i was telling her about the cup that i REALLY wanted. she was so sweet && actually sold hers to me for what she paid for it! i couldn’t believe how sweet she was! it is amazing how nice people are. i don’t know if it was the whole disney atmosphere but i was just SO happy!

we got to magic kingdom && used some of our fast passes to go on a few rides. when i walked into the park && saw the castle i felt like i could cry tears of joy! i hadn’t been to disney since i was 10 before this trip && it was amazing just to soak it all in! that night we ate at be our guest && it was literally the most AMAZING meal michael && i have ever had. the experience was great, the atmosphere was amazing && we had such a great time! i got to take my picture with the beast && of course i took a ton of pictures inside the restaurant. after dinner we were both pretty tired so we went back to the hotel && caught some sleep.

on friday i got up && had the pleasure of going for a run around our resort && the connecting resort, art of animation. the view was beautiful && i got to look around at both resorts. i did a quick 5k then we were off to epcot for the day! one of the greatest things about our resort was all the amazing spots i had to stop, drop, && yoga! i got a lot of great shots throughout the resort each day that we were there! epcot was really nice but definitely not our favorite park. we did walk around the whole park to see everything && later that day we went to beaches && cream && got our kitchen sink ice cream!! we didn’t get the big one that serves four people, we got the smaller one for two. it came in an adorable little dish that we got to keep [[&& will now be the dogs water bowl]]!!

 after our day in epcot we took a nap && went to disney springs to do some shopping && have dinner. we ended up getting dinner from the food trucks [[corn dogs && waffle fries]] && watching a rap battle that was so awesome!! i knew i needed to get some sleep so we went back to our resort && the next day was day one of the glass slipper challenge!! i laid out my outfit && got some shut eye.

my alarm went off at 2:45 so that we could be down to the bus by 3:30. i got up && got ready && we headed out. i was nervous because of the abdominal pain i have been battling lately but i knew i would make the most of it no matter what because i was in the most magical place on earth! when we got to the race area we just hung around for a while until it was time for me to get into my corral. for the 10k i was in corral A which was great because i always hate having to weave in && out of people. the race started with fireworks && we were off. i wore my headphones because i knew i needed the support if i ended up in pain, but it turns out i actually didn’t need them too much because there was so much entertainment along the course! i loved every moment of it. && while i didn’t stop for character pictures i did get to see them. i felt like if i stopped && waited in the lines for pictures id have a hard time starting back up again. i didn’t PR in the 10k but i did really well overall. i went all out which was probably not the smartest idea but i have a really competitive nature when i run!
after crossing the finish line all the volunteers were so sweet. you get water, powerade, && a little box of snacks. when i got my medal i was so happy && then i finally got to see my husband && i was so excited to show him my bling from day one of the glass slipper challenge! we went back to the resort to shower && nap, then it was off to hollywood studios. we got to go on a lot of really great rides && i even got to take my picture with the glass slipper! that night we went down to disney springs again for dinner. this time we went to the house of blues && had AMAZING burgers! once again we tried to get to bed early because this time my alarm went off at 2:15 so we could be to the bus by 3:00!

i had my outfit all laid out the night before && i got ready && down to the bus we went for day two of the glass slipper challenge! since i didn’t have any pain during my 10k i was hopeful that i wouldn’t have any during the half but unfortunately that didn’t hold true. i was in corral D for the half && while i waited i was pretty nervous. it had been a while since i ran a half && i just wanted to do well. once again the fairy godmother gave us the go && the fireworks went off!

i was glad i brought my headphones because there were stretches without anything but for the most part there were characters, music, dj’s, && bands all along the way. once again the volunteers were amazing! they are SO super supportive as they cheer you on. i hit a wall around mile 8 && started to experience abdominal pain. [[TMI- i also had an issue where i was spitting up acid from my stomach && i just didn’t know what to do]]. at that point i knew i just needed to focus && push myself to the finish. we got to run through the castle which was BEYOND amazing. it was too funny that they handed out tissues as we were about the head in. i took one just to wipe the sweat out of my eyes && i’ll admit i did get a little teary running through.
i was able to push through && while i didn’t PR i came in at 2:04 && i was really proud of myself. knowing i had ran a 10k full out the day before && completed the half with a great time just made me overwhelmed with emotion. i was so happy && when i got to see my husband i was just overjoyed! getting those medals around my neck was the biggest accomplishment of my running journey so far. it felt magically AMAZING!
that night we went back to magic kingdom && went on a whole bunch of rides. && i of course got my dole whip which was just as AMAZING as i imagined!! we had dinner at tony’s which was actually our least favorite meal of the trip but it wasn’t terrible. we spent the night just taking it all in && talking about plans to go back! there is SO much to see && do in disney && we knew it wasn’t possible to do all in one trip. it amazed me that while walking around the parks wearing my medals, people would stop to congratulate me! it was such a great feeling && i just love that everyone in disney has such a great heart!
running disney was absolutely the most AMAZING experience!! it was all i imagined it to be && more! i cannot wait to go back next year! i now have lots of training to do because i have 6 half marathons on deck for the spring/fall! one is just less than three weeks away, so stay tuned for my recap on the frozen penguin half!!

{&& of course i got the pups these adorable toys && bentley has destroyed his already! actually it took a matter of 5 minutes for him to bite a hole in it.. little brat}!!

{if you haven't already guessed, ariel is my favorite princess && i got to meet her && have her sign my bib}!!!!

{i want to give a HUGE thank you to my wonderful husband who was there for me every step of the way! from training runs to the actual runs in disney he was my number one cheerleader && i am truly blessed to have him}!!

{this is how we felt about being back home in NJ}..

TTFN disney,