Sunday, October 21, 2012

A Pixie Dusted Saturday

Yesterday was quite the day!  We started out with my youngest's final soccer game of her fall recreation league. The weather was gorgeous!  I was wearing a short sleeve shirt at an outdoor soccer game in late October in New England!  After the game we grabbed a quick bit to eat and were off to the Wrentham, MA outlet mall.  It was the official opening day for the new Disney Outlet.  The store was well organized and appeared to be like any other Disney Store.  I did recognize merchandise from the online sale page.  We picked up a couple of Christmas ornaments and moved on to other stores.

After we had finished the rest of our shopping I wanted to stop into the Swarovski store just to see if they had any Disney merchandise.  I always check out their items when I am at Downtown Disney and thought just maybe they would have some items on sale.  Jackpot!  They had Disney figurines and jewelry!   

I had my eye on this necklace, but it was a little expensive for my current budget.  It was about 1.5 to 2 inches across.  It was marked at $150 and 20% off.

I wanted the only Tinker Bell pin that they had in the store.  It took about 20 minutes to figure out how much she cost.  In the end she got to visit the castle and come home with me!  She is wearing a her pixie green dress and has crystals on her wings and shoes.

When I got home there was a package in the mailbox addressed to me!  To my surprise it was a thank you note and gift from Disney!  In September I was lucky enough to be able to attend the Disney on the Road event on Long Island.  The package was a nice follow up to the event.  Thank you to all involved! It was an amazing event and a wonderful thank you.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Anatomy of a Run

So here is the data from my Newport Amica Marathon.  The first half was west of the start/finish line and in town.  The second half was east of the start/finish and in the dunes and vineyards of Newport.

The first half of the course was packed with runners because we were all out there together: the half and full runners took on the town together.  The whole southwest and southern section was exposed to the Atlantic's furry!

The second half was the marathoners alone! The out and back in the southeastern corner was in the dunes! Yikes was the sand fierce! The section up to the right past the Sanctuary seemed to go on forever! It was also difficult to be face to face with folks that were so much closer to the finish line than I was.

Here is what my pace splits looked like.  I only went .4 miles beyond the 26.2.  That is not bad!  I do try to run the tangents on the course so as to stay as close as possible to the measured path.

SO on the chart below can you tell where my tweets were at the five mile mark clocks? That is what the first 3 downward spikes are.  The fourth mini spike is my blister popping.  There are a couple of photo after that and then another 5 mile photo.  At the end there are a couple of walk breaks up the hill.  And that is pretty much my run on a chart!

It is kind of crazy how well my photo/tweet stops line up so well with the mile marks on the elevation chart!

I can't wait to see what my Marine Corps Marathon stats look like!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Amica Marathon Weekend - Newport RI

What a crazy, insane, amazing weekend! I have been working toward this weekend in oh so many ways. In ways that I was well aware of...running longer and longer runs...and in ways that I was not so aware of...applying for the runDisney Specialist of the Disney Moms Panel.

Round 2 for the Moms Panel was announced on Friday and applications were do again on Monday! Along the way I had to work an extra 4 hour shift at work, hit the race expo, have a wonderful dinner to celebrate completing the United Healthcare Triple Crown of running and actually run a marathon, all before finishing and submitting my application.

I hope the Disney folks can see the true me in my application and that they will pass me on to the round 3 phone interview.  I would be over the moon to be chosen as the next runDisney specialist!

It took me a while, but I also remembered that Sunday was the 21st anniversary of the first time I kissed my husband! Three special moments that all happened on October 14th!  We were at college together and it was the long fall weekend.  I don't want to share all the magic, but it was a kiss to last a lifetime and to be repeated for an eternity!  I love you!

So let's see what it all looked like in pictures!

These folks were in the road on my way to work Saturday morning!

My very first Pinkberry ever (mine is on the left)! Carb loading for the race!

Race expo ready to run!

Newport bridge - at night (hehe)

United Health Care Triple Crown pasta dinner - free to triple crown runners like me!
I got a second plate of pasta!

Goodnight Newport

Good Morning Newport & race traffic

Some of the full marathon buses were going to the half marathon lot = not enough full buses!
I made it to the race site with 30 min to race.
I had just enough time for the bathroom and gear check!

It was too windy for the start line arch. So the start was somewhere up there!

There were more folks behind me.
It was spitting so all my photos are a little soft.

Linda ran as an Amica insurance agent! Amazing eh?


Yes...I had to show off the shirt!

I decided to take photos of the mile markers.
I was Tweeting and using Instagram throughout the race!

Yes...that is my bib with me behind it!
Kind of try shooting photos with your iPhone while really...try it!

mile 10

Near Marble House.
1st shot I put up on Instagram.
It gives you a geo-locator and tells you what you are near which is really cool in a race.

Cliff Walk behind me is Easton's Beach and the finish of the Half Marathon.
It is where my race really begins.  I had to run past the finish line and keep going another 13.1!

Sachuest Beach - Surfer's End - Mile 15

Angry Ocean - Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge -
Just after passing  16.5 miles when the blister on my right little toe burst in a most painful way and I realized I had no Idea where the closest medical station was.  It calmed down within a couple hundred yards and I was fine to the finish.

Greenvale Vineyards - mile 20 - I guess they ran out of clock stands!

Atlantic Beach Club - I finished 4:26 & a PR by 14 minutes - I am learning!  
The wind at this marathon was insane it felt like sustained winds of 25 miles with gusts to 35.  I could be off, but were were exposed to the full force of the ocean for long stretches and out in the dunes for miles.  We were literally being sandblasted.  There were stretches where I was running with my eyes closed!

I ran a steady race for the most part and felt like I had it under control for 24 miles.  The second to last mile took just about all I had left and the final mile was all mental.  I had given it so much and I just needed to finish it.  I might never beat this PR so I needed it to be as good as it was going to be!  So you could say I did the final 2 for the prior 24!

Running a marathon really is a crazy thing.  I would be happy if I could run every other day for an hour for the rest of my life.  That would keep me feeling good about my self and healthy.  But I also enjoy running longer distances, both by myself and in race situations.

I spent the first half of the marathon encouraging other runners.  Runners who were trying to get to the finish of the half.  I was trying to run that first 13 within myself.  Not pushing too hard.  Trying not to exhaust myself too early.  Then I had to drop them all off at their finish line and carry on to mine.  Newport is the tale of two races: the shared first 13.1 miles where everyone is together and the second 13.1 where the warriors carry on the battle!  This year that battle was with the wind, the sand and ourselves!

After the race I grabbed my marathon medal and my triple crown medal.  Downed a half cup of chicken noodle soup, boarded the bus back to my van, drove myself the 1 hour home, showered, got a massage from my husband, rested for an hour, wrote 5 essays for the runDisney specialists position on the Moms Panel, shot a 60 second video and submitted my application.  I know a Disney production crew can do worlds better with the video shoot so hopefully I will get that shot.

I a firm believer that one of the best things the Disney Corporation is doing for its fans is getting them moving with the power of runDisney motivation.  There are so many people out there doing runDisney that would have never started running with out the Disney motivation.  Sure Disney makes money off their running fans, but they also give back through amazing experiences, entertainment and better health!  I love being able to help other runners.  There is so much to learn, love and savor about an active lifestyle and the more of us that can benefit the better!  Thanks for following me folks and supporting me along the way.  I really hope and pray that Moms Panel works out and I get to share my love of runDisney with even more runners, run/walkers and soon-to-be runners!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Columbus Day Run, Sew and Shop Fest

What does a runDisney lover do when she is waiting to hear if she has made it to round two in the search for the next Disney Moms Panel runDisney specialist? Well I worked on a running dress costume, went shopping for some more costume fabric and of course went for a run. I am one of the lucky ones who had the day off from work and boy did make use of it!

This morning I stared working on my Alice in Wonderland costume! It will have a blue dress with a silver apron. We thought the silver would add a nice touch!

This is where I am so far! I will wear whatever base layers are appropriation for the weather. Long sleeve white shirt and shorts or tights depending on conditions.  The fabric is super stretchy so it will move well!

As for my run was amazingly fall out there! The temps were in the mid 50s and fabulous! I ran in long pants and a long sleeve shirt. I was also wearing my secret agent safety straps. Every time I wear them I find myself singing "Secret runner girl" to the "Secret agent man" theme! They really do make me run faster, because they make me run happy and safe!

It is time to get out there and light up the night! I don't know how far away a driver (with their headlights on) can see me, but I am thinking I am pretty visible!

So that is some of what I did today between checking my email and chatting with other Moms Panel hopefuls! Tomorrow I am back to work and that will keep me plenty busy until late afternoon. Then bring on soccer for my youngest, dance for my oldest and the rest of life!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

It was a dark and foggy night for a run...

Narragansett Bay was no longer visible. The street lamps cast an eerie light over the streets, cars and dark sidewalks.  I set my watch to track my every movement in the time/space continuum and set out on foot.  

There were plenty of others out there plodding along at their own pace.  None of them as visible as myself in my safety suspenders.  As I quietly passed people coming and going I could tell they questioned the only noise I was making...a simple sloshing bottle.  They always stepped an extra foot to the side giving me clear passage.  

I know not what the drivers were thinking, but can only guess...Look at that streak! You can turn it any which way around and still see its reflective stripes as it runs down the road.  Sometimes I fancy myself the disco ball of runners.  You better believe I dream about striking a pose every time a car shines its headlights my way!  "Disco, disco duck, I want to be a disco duck!" (Sung by Donald Duck to the tune of "Macho Man".)  That is the song of my childhood!  If we could only get the runDisney race DJ to play that before the Donald Half Marathon Weekend! 

As I finished my run on an uphill (Why does it always end on an up hill? Simple answer: Because it starts on a downhill!) I reflected on my run which started at 6:30 (6.5 hour), which lasted 6.5 miles, at 65 degrees and I wondered if it had all been a coincidence and if there were any other 65's in my day.  In the end I am left with the same feeling as always...dundundun...I am tired and I want to go to sleep. 

The only question left to ask is "Was it worth it?" And of course the answer will always be yes!  My tired is a relaxed kind of tired.  My sweat is a healthy kind of sweat (note: I did take a shower and I am not currently sweaty).  And if I have only inspired and made a few people smile then it was all worth it, it was really all worth it!  Now go to bed, or running, or whatever it is that you really need to do at this given moment! Cheers!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Clif Bar bonus boxes!

Over the past 2 weeks I have received some Clif Bar love in the mail. I did not know that either of the boxes were headed my way! The first box arrived as a result of registering for a Clif pace group at Marine Corps Marathon. The box is also sponsored by Saucony. They included a 25% off your next order coupon in the box!

As if that was not enough a second box arrived! But this one was not just a cardboard box, it contained a metal Eco Lunchbox packed with Clif products!

Happy packaging! 

Those are some great nutritional facts!

Shiny box & totally reusable!

First level of yum!

Second level of yum!

Third level of yum!
Thanks Clif for shipping me two boxes of yummyness! The Eco Lunchbox came with a little note thanking me for stopping by their booth at the expo...which expo I am not quite sure, but I do love a good Clif/Luna sample at an expo!