Nearly Wordless Wednesday – Favorite Pinterest Pins!

Hello everyone!  After what seems like an eternity, I am finally finding a bit of time to add in some pictures to share on my friend Deb’s site, Focused on the Magic!  This week, the theme is Favorite Pinterest Pictures, and I’m sharing with you two of my highest pinned photos on my Pinterest boards.  I hope you enjoy them!  As always, a special thank you to Deb for hosting this great weekly series!  Even though I haven’t been adding to it, I have been following some, so thanks for keeping it going!

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My most re-pinned Pinterest pin is of Expedition Everest!

This is also a well loved Pin -- it's of Walt Disney on Opening Day of Disneyland, July 17, 1955!

This is also a well loved Pin — it’s of Walt Disney on Opening Day of Disneyland, July 17, 1955!

Clicking on each image will take you to my Pinterest page and pull up the photo there, so feel free to check it out!  If you aren’t following me on Pinterest yet, please consider doing so!  Now, please go check out the other entries this week — just click on the button below and you’ll head over there.  Thanks, and make it a great Disney Day!

Focused on the Magic

How runDisney isn’t as bad as you think…

Welcome to the first stop aboard Magical Blogorail. Enjoy the ride as we share our experiences, tips, and info to help you runDisney.

Image ©Disney

Image ©Disney

The Princess 5K.  My daughter and I are going to be running in the Princess 5K on February 20, 2015.  We did much of our training for the race during the summer/early fall, and now need to do a quick recap of the training in the month before our big event.  As we contemplated doing this, one thing that we both started thinking about was how crazy it seems to be going to Disney to do a race. What were we thinking?!

After a brief moment of panic — and I mean very brief — we both stopped and regrouped to get our bearings.  The first thing that I reminded Sophie about was that we weren’t doing a marathon or a half marathon — we were simply doing the Princess 5K.  The 5K is just 3.1 miles.  No sweat.  I’ve run 5Ks before, and when we visit the parks, we easily walk upwards of 10 miles in a day, so there isn’t any reason why we couldn’t do the runDisney Princess 5K.

In addition, I told myself that doing this event isn’t just about doing the run.  This is a moment when my daughter and I can connect on something that just she and I are doing.  Sophie is a typical 13 year old teenager — so if you are a parent of one that age, you know that the days when your baby wants to hang out with you and do things that you like to do together are starting to be few and far between.  This race has been a great way for the two of us to spend more time together, to do the things together and to extend that bond longer.

Also, the race is Frozen themed — and we all loved seeing Frozen so much that we saw it more times in the theater than I think we ever saw any other movie.

Lastly, when you do the race, you’ll receive one of these special medals — depending on which race you are doing:

Image ©Disney

Image ©Disney

So, in the end, the takeaway I have with the runDisney experience will be this (I hope):

runDisney: It isn’t as bad as you think!

What do you think?  Have you ever done a runDisney 5K or some other runDisney race?  What did you think of it?  Let me know in the comments, please, and thanks for stopping by!

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Home is Where the Mouse is.

runDisney

#DisneyTrivia – runDisney

runDisney

Image ©runDisney.com

Hello everyone, I’m back!  After a few week hiatus from #DisneyTrivia, I’m proud to rejoin my friends Jodi from Magical Mouse Schoolhouse and Heidi from Heidi’s Head to take a look at the best Disney Trivia available!  Today I’ve got a special look at runDisney, the athletic arm of Disney, and we’re going to look at some great facts and figures about all of the runDisney events.  In addition, I’ve got a special announcement about this as well, so keep reading!

  • Did you know more than 163,000 participants run in runDisney events (currently around 26 different races!)?
  • Did you know that there are two women-focused runDisney events?  The Tinker Bell Half Marathon and the Princess Half Marathon allow men to run, but the first two corrals are for women only, and only women can win prizes (except for coed running teams).
  • If you like race medals, and are up for a challenge, you need to look into the Dopey challenge!  This challenge requires you to run the 5K, 10K, half-marathon, and marathon all in the same weekend event — that’s 4 medals for running the races, plus you get the Goofy Challenge medal (for running the half-marathon and marathon on consecutive days) plus the special Dopey challenge medal!  All told, 6 medals, and 48.6 miles of running over 4 days!  Crazy!
  • Did you know that if you run in one of the races, you can dress up in a favorite character costume?  You can’t do this normally at Disney — costumes aren’t allowed except for children — but doing so during the race is quite common!
  • Most of the half-marathon and marathon races start in the late evening — like 10PM or so, and run (pun intended) until around 4AM!  Afterwards, there is a party to celebrate and enjoy some good food!

Have you ever run in one of the runDisney events?  If so, I’d love to hear about your experiences, because my daughter Sophie and I have decided to start training to run in a Disney 5k of our own!  Our training starts today, and we’re utilizing the Couch-to-5K free app for our iPhone.  Tell me what you thought of your race experience, and thanks!  Now, please check out the rest of the entries and we’ll see you later on with more Disney content!

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Frank describes running the Walt Disney World Half Marathon!

half marathon start-frank

{Editor’s Note:  Today we have the distinct pleasure to welcome my co-worker Frank, a Disney Fanatic, DVC owner, and running enthusiast!  Read along as he talks about his and his wife’s experience running the Walt Disney World Half Marathon on January 11, 2013!}

As folks across the country slowly become convinced that spring is actually here,  (how many warm days have been followed by snow the next) I thought I would write something to inspire folks to get outside, get exercise, and possibly think about experiencing Disney magic in a new way.

Run Disney.

That’s right, run through the parks.  You can walk, visit the attractions, and grab a bite to eat later.  But I suggest at some point, do something totally out-of-the-box and sign up for one of the Run Disney events.

My story:

My wife and I began running a few years ago with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training Program.  We decided to get in shape and raise money for cancer research.  We completed the Nashville Half-Marathon with them and then finished a couple other half-marathons on our own.  Oh yes, we practice what is called the run/walk system. That means running for about one minute, walk for 30 seconds, and then run again. We don’t break any world records, but we finish the race and are not last.

Looking for a new goal, we decided to sign up for the 20th Anniversary edition of the Disney World Marathon/Half-Marathon.  We did not attempt the Goofy Challenge, which means running both races the same weekend.  We did, however, sign our two children up for the Family 5K.

Needless to say, in typical Disney style, the event is organized beyond belief and is a lot of fun.

Race day found us getting on a bus outside the Contemporary Resort at 4am.  There were dozens of other runners in line, some in costume, some like us in standard running gear.  We all were thankful it was not raining and was a comfortable temperature.

The real surprise came when we arrived at the parking lots near Epcot.  There, we joined with 20,000 runners to line up in our corrals along a roadway leading into the park.  (Corrals are roped off areas from which you will start the race.  Your corral assignment is based on how fast you think you will finish. The fastest runners start first.  We were Corral “H”.  The letters continued up to “K”)

Runner were laughing, cheering, singing and talking.  Music was blaring, DJ’s were cheering and highlighting people in costume.  It was a party, despite it still being dark and everyone was standing along a road, trying to burn off nervous energy until the 5:30am start time.   Finally, Mickey, Donald and Goofy took the stage to say, “GO!” The fireworks lit up the sky, and the race began.  Corral 1 ran off, corral 2 started five minutes later, and so on.

half marathon boat-frank

The Half-Marathon course runs from the Epcot parking lot, around the Disney World Speedway, to the Magic Kingdom, through the Magic Kingdom (you run through the castle) past the Grand Floridian resort, around Spaceship Earth at Epcot, and back to the parking lot.

What makes the race so special, and so fun, is the great spirit of the runners, the attractions that are set up along the course (characters, marching bands, choirs, floats) the kindness of the Disney cast members, and the fact you are RUNNING through Disney World.  I’ve attached a few pictures of some of the sites along the course.

half marathon parking-frank

It is not an easy adventure.  My wife and I were doing fine until about mile 11 and then we started hurting.  But we finished the race and we weren’t last.  And having a cast member slip the gold Donald Duck Half-Marathon medal around our necks was truly magical!

{Editor’s Note: Enjoy the rest of these pictures that showcase some of the best moments of Frank and Gail’s race, and the reward they felt in finishing!  Congratulations, you two, and everyone else that also stepped up for the challenge!}

half marathon main street-frank

half marathon stitch-frank

half marathon epcot-frank

half marathon finish-frank