Friday, March 21, 2014

Princess Weekend Detour

One of the highlight's of my Princess trip was without a doubt the Monday after Princess, and the last day in Orlando before my flight left at o'dark thirty on Tuesday morning.  Maybe it was the fact that I knew I was done running or the company or both.  But hands down this day was a blast. 

I started the day with DisBroad's Julie, Patty and Shannon at Islands of Adventure.  Yes, I know not Disney, but I was on a mission.  As were we all.  I had been on the fence about going for various reasons and then after talking with hockey nerd, I decided I would go to kind of scope it out for our next family trip. 

 I haven't been to Islands of Adventure for almost ten years. The last time I was there was on my honeymoon.  One that was equally split between Universal, Islands of Adventure and Walt Disney World.  The highlights of the trip were being their for the grand opening of The Mummy ride, hello Brendan Fraser. Oh and some little thing called Star Wars Weekends. 

Fast forward ten years and we are going back to celebrate our ten year anniversary with our little people in tow and introducing them to Star Wars Weekends as well.  Here's where my reconnaissance mission comes in.  Hockey Nerd and L are huge Marvel and Star Wars fans.  By osmosis some of it has rubbed off on me to a lesser degree and well, E likes anything her bubba likes.   But this is where it gets tricky.  Marvel is at Islands of Adventure as is L's newest obsession Harry Potter.  So off I went to see if I thought it was worth a visit for us on our next visit.  L is not adventurous with his rides, so we have held off thinking there was not much he would do.  E will try anything once, but the height requirements could be a problem.

First task at hand, Shannon and I were off to Super Hero Island and a visit to the Hulk.  Perfect way to start off the visit for me.  Being the kind Mom that I am, I had to check it out just to make sure that L wouldn't go on this coaster.  I was right.  But I sure had fun with it.   I think Shannon did too.  As we started walking over to Spiderman we crossed paths with the one and only Victor Von Doom himself.  So of course had to stop for a picture for my boys. 

From there we went to Dr.Doom's Fearfall, a ride that once again L would not go for.  Interestingly enough, this one used to freak me out a bit.  Have I mentioned I don't like heights? Nope.  Not at all.  This time though, I enjoyed it and I think I may have even complained that it wasn't long enough. 
The big draw of course would be Spiderman.  The be all and end all character for both hockey nerd and L.  So once again I took it for the team. Shannon and I met Patty and Julie in line and off we went.  I have always loved this ride, and the updated version of it did not disappoint.  I am happy to say that this is the first success, without a doubt both L & E will love this ride.  
From there we went over to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter which was a first for me (Shannon and Julie as well).  Oh my goodness the theming was amazing. For that much alone I know L would love it.  First thing we did was the Forbidden Journey, which was incredible.  I'm not sure that he will like it, be he is rather insistent on doing this at least once.  We also did The Dragon Challenge, which I was more familiar with as Dueling Dragons.  It was cool for me to see how they incorporated the Harry Potter theming with one of our favorite rides in the past.  Of course, I had to go on that one just for memories sake.  Though the coasters no longer depart at the same time it was fun none the less. 

On our way out I had to make a stop back at Marvel Super Hero Island to pick up some goodies for my boys.  Imagine my surprise when I saw the Heroes out in their um motorcade?  I may or may not have gotten yelled at while trying to get a picture of it for the boys.  Oops.  I was on a mission. 
 We were tight on time, so didn't really have a chance to go get a picture with Spidey, Storm, or Wolverine.  But as we were just about out I spied Cyclops and he did not have a line.  Oh my goodness, I had to stop.  Fortunately Shannon was a good sport and off I ran.  I told him that I was I there for my son and husband and he said "well, then let's make this a good one." The series of pictures that ensued were all sorts of awesome. Thanks Shannon.  Ok, I'll admit it I might have geeked out a little bit, or a lot. Or so much it surprised even me.  
 From Islands of Adventure, Patty dropped Shannon and I off at Animal Kingdom, with instructions to hit Everest, Kilimanjaro Safaris and Dinosaur.  We were able to do all except for the Safari as it closed earlier than the rest of the park.  We rode the bus back to Pop and picked up Patty for one last dash through Hollywood Studios.  In our quest for dinner we found out that even though it was Extra Magic Hours, if you don't have reservations you can pretty much forget about eating during that time.  We ended up with nachos from a cart and a bench but it was all good.  I'm not even sure we rode anything at this point.  But it was a great way to the end the day.

What were some of your non race highlights from the weekend? 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Shakes

If are one of my Instagram friends this post shouldn't surprise you.  If you've been reading for any length of time, even less surprising.  I have a shake addiction.  You name it, I've tried it. Shakes are my go to breakfast and have been for I can't even remember how long now. 

Shakes have been a staple for my breakfast, quick, nutritious and portable.  All good things since we usually seem to be running behind.  I just recently bought a blender bottle so I am starting to make them for lunch also on running days and on days I don't have lunch plans. One of my cube shelves is becoming a shake supply cabinet. 

The other thing I like about shakes is that they are filling and since I have a bit of a sweet tooth, I can have something sweet and totally feel like I'm cheating.  If you've noticed on Instagram most of my shakes have been of the sweet cakes/pie variety. 

I have developed a few favorites recently so I thought I would share them.  I can't lay claim for the creation of these.  Most of them I have tweaked from Visalus recipes.  Some I've not changed at all.  But they are too good not to share. 

Cinnamon Bun -
This has become a staple.  Not super involved but oh so yummy.
Shake Mix/Protein Powder, whatever you use.
8 oz of Almond Milk.  I prefer Silk, because I feel like it blends better and doesn't separate if it sits too long.  You can use regular milk, soy, whatever. 
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of butter flavoring/butter buds. 
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla.
Ice to preference.  I like mine thick, so I tend to use more ice, the less ice it seems like it's a little thinner. 

Chocolate Peanut Butter - my recent lunch/post run fave.  This is easy peasy and my cheat is that for my lunch shakes I just buy the kid sized boxes of Silk.  You know the ones that don't need to be refrigerated.  I know ewww...But they are exactly 8 oz and super convenient to make on the go.
My recipe is just chocolate silk almond milk
1 tablespoon of chocolate PB2
Shake mix
and few ice pellets for good measure. 
Also as an alternate for the chocolate flavors, some just use cocoa powder.  I just use chocolate silk again for the ease.

Gotta love the glimpse into my desk here.  Phone, headset, shake and gum.    A girl has her priorities.

Lemon Meringue Pie -  This one screams spring/summer to me.  Maybe because I want it to be warmer so bad, but this has come in regular rotation.

Shake mix
8 oz of Almond Milk
1 teaspoon of Lemon extract
1/2 tablespoon of graham cracker crumbs

For other pie flavors, just change out the lemon extract for whatever fruit.  I have used a handful or two of blueberries, but you really could use any fruit.  Also the graham cracker crumbs could be a bit of a calorie splurge so you could do without.  I bought a box of premade graham cracker crumbs from the baking section.  Yes, I'm that lazy. 

Last but not least, Vanilla Latte -
1 teaspoon instant coffee crystals
shake mix
8oz of Almond Milk. 

I discovered a brand of coffee crystals made by Copper Moon with a probiotic so that's been my favorite.  Cause well, you can never have too much probiotic in your life, right?  Coffee with probiotic #ftw. 

I'm all about simple, and sweet.  Who am I kidding?  It's all about the sweet, guilty snacky seeming shakes that are a little bit better than the real thing.

Are you a shake drinker?  If you have any recipes you would like to share? 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The rest of my Princess Half Story

Because I have been pokey, I sort of feel at this point any recaps of the Enchanted 10k or the Princess Half would be kind of redundant.  I'm not sure that I would have anything different to say than what has already been said. 

I will say that one of the highlights for me was the 10k, I loved the #PoppinsPosse costumes.  I had an absolute blast with the Disbroads.  I loved Elsa on the overpass and the snow, that just was the coolest thing.  My favorite part of the 10K was the Beach and Yacht Club/Boardwalk area.  I haven't spent much time there other than running through, but I for sure want to go hang out and just take it in on a non-running day.

As far as Princess Half, I really must have been in my own world last year because parts of it were brand new for me.  Even though I know the route didn't change.  I just kept finding myself thinking "wow, I don't remember this".  I spent most of the half with DisBroad Amy and DisBroad Tania, and the company was fun.  It was nice to not be by myself, but yet have the room with my thoughts.  It was the best of both worlds.

I can also admit, I'm a terrible villain.  One of my friends said it best, I just looked mildly put out.  Ah well, it was fun playing a bad girl for the day, even if I didn't look like one. 

My goal going into the half was to just have fun, and make time for character stops which I didn't last year.  That for sure was accomplished this year. 

It also seemed that there was more crowding this year than last year.  I found myself getting frustrated at times that I couldn't get around people. In the bigger picture, it was not a deal breaker for me.

Around mile twelve, I might have had a little homesickness moment.  The DJ just happened to be playing Born to Run right as we passed.  My hockey nerd is a massive Bruce Springsteen fan, so much that on his final move from Pennsylvania to Oklahoma he played nothing but Springsteen for the entire 20 something hour drive.  This girl is so not a Springsteen girl, so that was a treat let me tell you.  But Born to Run made me think of him and then it seemed literally around the corner was Sofia, one of my sweet E's favorites.

I might have gotten a little (or a lot teary) and then that was compounded by the gospel choir.  Future race trips for sure will not be as long and leisurely as this one.  It just was too long for me to be away and I know they missed me too. 

All in all the Princess trip was different for me this year, I brought two local running friends with me and I had the Broads. But something was just amiss.  I had a lot of stuff going on in my head that probably didn't make it an ideal trip for me, but that's ok too.  Princess 2014  got me thinking and reevaluating and that's always good. Sometimes it takes things going not as expected to help put other things in order. 

Don't get me wrong, I did have so so much fun, and I loved that I was there and I loved the time that I had with friends. Princess is always going to be my fave, because it was my first Half and I will always have a special love for that race. 

Have you ever had a race trip go not quite as planned?  If you ran the Glass Slipper Challenge or any of the races that weekend, what were you thoughts?  Any favorites jump out at you? 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Royal Family 5k Recap

Apparently, the thought of running 19.3 miles in two days wasn't enough for me.  At some point in the gearing up for the Glass Slipper Challenge time frame I decided I would also run the 5k.  Or rather the term run was used lightly.  My Oklahoma running friends and I decided that we would do it and just go slow and take pictures.  I had been coercing Wendy as soon as I signed up and she eventually agreed to join us.  Then the shirt came out, the super amazingly cute shirt, next thing I know DisBroad Patty and DisBroad Kristen were in as well. 

We got an early start on Friday morning after almost closing Magic Kingdom down on Thursday night.  Which truly was sign of what the rest of the weekend was.

 Patty and I left on one of the first buses and met Kristen and Wendy there.  We had an unintentional theme going as Kristen, Wendy and myself were all Belle's of the ball (er 5k) and Patty was rocking her Gaston costume for all its worth.  We also ran into Bonnie and her family as well prior to the race. 

Lisa and Marla slept a little bit later and we ran into them again in the staging area and at one stop on the course. 

I will say this 5k will go down in my personal history as my slowest 5k ever.  That being said, it probably was one of my most fun.  We went slow and stopped for almost every character stop.  There were a few we bypassed because of the line and because there was some semblance of time watching  on our behalf. 

We stopped at Mulan and Mushu, I have no photographic proof of this as my camera decided not to function at that point in time.  Also no MarathonFoto either.  Truly this one is ok as I probably had a look of concern on my face since the camera wasn't working. 

We also stopped for Dopey, I think this is the first time I've actually gotten a picture with him.  I later shared on Instagram that it was probably the closest I would get to Dopey in my lifetime. 

By far my favorite stop, had to have been running into the Beast, since I was all Belle tutu'ed out this was for sure a must do for me.  As I approached him, he bowed to me and I curtsied, and we got the picture.  It was a moment in character history for me.  It will be one I will remember for a long time, because I did let myself go and just have fun with it. 

Such a fun time that morning, not being concerned about time, about anything.  Just having fun and enjoying the magic that comes along with a runDisney race.  I think for future races, I'll do the 5k with the same intent, stop at all the character stops and just enjoy the day. 

I've also said this numerous times before but for me runDisney is about spending time with friends and having fun with it. Having fun with a race doesn't make you any less of a runner.  It also is nice to not worry about PR'ing a race and just enjoying the time.  For me I have local races to be serious and to worry about a PR or not, runDisney isn't that kind of a race for me. 

I had a total blast with the 5k, the morning was beautiful and I had fun with some of my BRF's.  I couldn't ask for a better 5k (well, ok, maybe one day coming in under 30:04 might be better).  

Did you run the Royal Family 5k?  What were your thoughts?