Sunday, March 23, 2014

My runDisney DisneySide Party

I received free product in the form of a celebration party kit in order to host my Disney Side @Home Celebration. This promotion was conducted in conjunction with Disney Parks and MomSelect. The opinions expressed here are my own. 

When I found out that I was going to be a host for one of the approximately 2000 #DisneySide @Home Celebration my mind immediately started spinning.  Of course I found out the day I got home from WDW after finishing the inaugural Dopey Challenge!  

My first decision: where was I going to host my party?  I considered hosting it at my house, at my local running store, at the Y and then I could always go big and head to everyone's favorite house of the Mouse!  Since I wanted to throw a runDisney party and the Princess Half weekend fell in the middle of the two week party window it seemed perfect!  That is when the planning really began!  

The fact that the #DisneySide party kit came in an American Tourister suitcase meant that a WDW destination party was almost predestine! Dopey was chosen as my prefect party co-host, after all I had just completed my greatest runDisney challenge in January. Chef Mickey and runDisney Mickey came along for the trip.  

My runDisney DisneySide party arriving at MCO in style 
in it's American Tourister luggage!

I booked a room at Disney's Contemporary Resort 
Convention Center for our party! 
It was a good thing right off the bat.  
The sky opened and it dumped 
right after we took this picture!

The staff at the Contemporary were amazing! 
They helped us out with our DisneySide party balloons!

We loved being an official event! 

The #DisneySide party swag on the gift table.  
We did a raffle for all of the kit swag, plus a few extras!

The chef's made us an amazing DisneySide cake! 
I wanted to bring my Dopey Challenge 
experience together with Princess Half weekend! 
They did a beautiful job don't you thing!

Check out the bling that was already adding up!

The ladies had a great time being able to relax and chat 
while working on their runDisney DisneySide ChEar cards!

Before too long it was raffle time! 
The HP Printer cards were a big hit! 
Melissa was excited to use her cards as 
thank you notes for her runDisney charity team!

Bring on the cake! 
I went with a marble cake with 
chocolate icing between the layers 
and a butter cream icing.

Chef Mickey, Dopey and runDisney Mickey 
approved of the chef's work!

We used our cupcake papers for our raffle papers.

Happy party guests!

After the formal portion of the party 
we took our balloons and signs on the rail! 
Seven Seas Lagoon Monorail Tour up next! 

We were off to say Aloha to the fountain at the Polynesian!

This was also the final stop for our balloons! 
We gave half away on the Monorail 
and the rest went to children at the Polynesian! 
Handing out balloons to kids is a lot of fun!

One final fun moment! 
The pilot meets the Monorail drivers 
(future job)! 
Yes she is tickled pink!

You can throw your own #DisneySide party when and wherever you want.  If you want some ideas check out the amazing ideas on  Simply run a search for DisneySide or start with this great post by the @DisneySisters!

How To Throw The Perfect Disney Side Party in 6 Magical Steps

I received free product in the form of a celebration party kit in order to host my Disney Side @Home Celebration. This promotion was conducted in conjunction with Disney Parks and MomSelect. The opinions expressed here are my own. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

My Glass Slipper Challenge ChEar Weekend

runDisney events are amazing! They are running festivals of fun with friends new and old all wrapped up in Disney! Over the years I have been lucky enough to race Princess Half weekend 3 times, more than any other race weekend. This year I was unable to register due to potential work conflicts, but found myself able to go at the last minute to chEar on my fellow runDisney lovers.

I took the low expense approach and was able to use flight vouchers from previous trips to save on travel costs. Plus I was hoping to earn more vouches on my return flight. (More on that later.) 

After a morning meeting on Friday, which was conveniently located at a hotel near the airport, I hopped on an afternoon flight to WDW! It was already past 9 pm by the time I arrived at the resort. It was strange arriving mid-event! The 5k was already over and most runners we're already in bed getting what sleep they could before the 10k. 

Of course morning came bright and early...well not so bright. We got up and out the door headed to the event transportation buses. The lines were not that bad and we were on our way with ease.  I know what these early morning are like, but I have new found respect for the support crews that come out to cheer for their racers.  There just is not as much adrenaline flowing among those who are cheering vs. racing. 

Since I was not racing my plan was to move around the course chEaring and take photos of other runners having fun! I really like the new 10k course at WDW. It is more of a runners course with longer stretches of open running.  Plus it incorporates the Boardwalk which is one of my favorite places on property. 

After I wished my roommates well and saw them off to their corral I headed to the parking lot to get another perspective on runDisney races. They really are an amazing parade! Watching the event start and the runners stream across the start line was spectacular! 

I chEared as corral A and B runners set out on the course. I tried taking pictures as you all streamed by. Some of them came out, but most did not. It was still so dark and you all were moving! 

After the B corral went by I moved on down the course around the parking lot and out onto the road. It was a very humid morning and there were very few folks out chEaring. I did my best, but you all needed more fans out there!

runDisney has never been about the bling or the stuff for me.  It has always been about the brand's ability to motivate folks to be more active.  Simply put having fun on the run!  After this experience I am contemplating shifting my event participation towards a more formal support roll...possibly working as a coach/trainer/motivator for a charity team.  I love being out there chEaring others on to do great things!  I am still planning to run some of their events as well, but I am going to continue to explore the other aspects of runDisney!

Here are some of my favorite pictures from the morning...with a few more thoughts below.

It was bizarre being at a runDisney race weekend and never getting my picture taken with a character at the event.  At the same time it was very liberating.  On occasion runners did ask me if I would take their picture and I was more than happy too.  I am always asking strangers to take my picture for me while I'm running.  So it was par for the course given that the tables were turned.

You all are an inspiration! I really enjoyed chEaring for you.  Next up is the Princess Half and even more chances to chEar!  Bring on Main Street and "It's the castle!"

Thursday, March 6, 2014


Are you Disney Fit? This is your all around challenge at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex! We are not talking Trivial Pursuit here. This is full on CrossFit competition!

"ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex hosts over 350 events each year, and since 1997, we've seen athletes compete in more than 70 different sports. But never in our 17-year history have we hosted a competitive fitness event. That is about to change.

Today, we are excited to announce the Disney Fit Challenge, a three-day event hosted at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World® Resort, September 26-28, that will test speed, strength, skill, endurance, balance and power. Competition schedules will leverage I AM CrossFit workouts, designed to test the fitness and skill of our competitors. I AM Crossfit is one of the leading competitive fitness organizations in the Southeast. 
Disney Fit Challenge With I AM CrossFit Workouts
COMPETITION: AGE & SKILL DIVISIONSUnique to the Disney Fit Challenge, competition will be designed so you may test yourself against other athletes with similar abilities. Divisions will be split by age groups and skill levels. Likewise, challenges will be designed to match your abilities, whether you are an elite athlete who is experienced in competitive fitness, or just beginnig your journey. For example, experienced athletes may be required to perform muscle-ups and double-unders, while recreational participants will compete in movements like box jumps, kettle bell swings, push-ups, squats and broad jumps.

Across all divisions, athletes will compete in the first two days of competition. Athletes with the highest scores will then advance to the Finals on the last day of competition. 

Spectators are encouraged to attend and support their athletes. And all athletes and spectators will be invited to join us at the Health & Fitness Expo, featuring the latest fitness products, event merchandise and apparel.
Registration for the Inaugural Disney Fit Challenge opens at Noon on Tuesday, March 18. Event details and registration information will be available approximately one week before registration opens. Share the announcement on Facebook and Twitter with the links below, and get ready test your fitness at the Inaugural Disney Fit Challenge!"