2015 Disneyland 5K or How a 2-hour 5K is #Winning

Inside Out - Castle

The Inside Out Crew in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle

Our little buddy @TinyTikiRunner had recovered from the Great Tinker Bell 5K Hamper, Umbrella, and Mop Incident of 2015 and came forward with a Disneyland 5K costume request of her own – Inside Out.  Pretty excited that not only was Tiny Tiki still speaking to us, but that she might (just might) be getting into #RunningInAllTheCostumes, we agreed (even if we hadn’t actually seen the movie….).

Good news was that Tiny Tiki had invited a childhood friend to run with us (Hey – glad you’re coming with us for your first runDisney weekend.  By the way – you’re gonna need to run the 5K as Riley and wear a hockey jersey and helmet and carry a hockey stick.  Hello?  Hello?  You’re still coming, right?!?!  Why is she not responding to our emails?..).

Nicole and Katy Buompensiero - Alice and Mad Hatter...Running in Teacups!

Nicole and Katy Buompensiero – Alice and Mad Hatter…Running in Teacups!

Bad news was that we still needed to con at least 2 more people into dressing up like crazy people and “running” with us if we wanted all the emotions.

Nicole and Katy Buompensiero as Merida

Nicole and Katy Buompensiero as Merida and Queen Elinor

 

 

 

 

 

 

We immediately thought of Nicole and Katy Buompensiero – the mother/daughter team whose runDisney costumes we’d loved (and coveted) over several years.  It was like reaching out to your idols and hoping (against hope) that they would not only want to hang out with you, but would invest their time and money to help you realize an idea.  We cannot tell you how excited we were when Nicole and Katy responded that not only where they in – they were IN!

Inside Out: Fear Costume In-Progress

Inside Out: Fear Costume In-Progress

Inside Out - Anger Head In-Process

Inside Out: Anger Head In-Process

We knew we were going to have to “bring it” as we anticipated lots of Inside Out costumes since it was Pixar’s most recent release.

Inside Out: Disgust Dress In-Process

Inside Out: Disgust Dress In-Process

Over the course of the next several months, we held a few costuming conference calls and posted progress on a closed Facebook Group to ensure that the final product would look cohesive when we all got to the race – as everyone was responsible for their own costume creation.  Thank goodness for technology when your group is located in Connecticut, Florida, Arizona, and California.

Race day arrived and Tiny Tiki, her childhood friend, Kimberly and I got ready in our hotel room.  3:30am came early, as we had a bit of body painting to complete before heading out to our corrals.  There was A LOT of laughter as we all got dressed.  You know you love your running friends when you’re willing to paint their armpits green pre-dawn, in your hotel bathroom…

Sadness Selfie

Sadness #Selfie

And how committed was Tiny Tiki to her idea?

As Sadness, she wore slippers for the ENTIRE race (and still managed to be faster than the rest of us)!  Slippers, people – for a 5K.  Pretty sure this means she’s hooked (even if she swears she’ll only dress up for 5Ks.  We will see, we will see…).

We met up with Nicole and Katy in the courtyard of the Disneyland Hotel were Nicole handed out her hand-made core memory balls.  They lit up and really just added that extra-special something to our costumes.  As we walked to the corrals, we just couldn’t stop giggling at each other.  These costumes were just SO MUCH FUN!

One of the things we love about running runDisney 5K races is that, in many cases, families come out and run together.  We had so much fun taking photos with the kids – who really seemed to love our costumes.  And we were lucky enough to keep running into a family whose kids were dressed up as Disgust and Anger.  They were SO adorable and kept stopping to take photos with us and give us hugs.  So much fun!

Inside Out: Mile Marker 2 (Note the time...)

Inside Out: Mile Marker 2 (Note the time…)

We took #AllThePhotos (both character stops and with fellow runners) and quickly ended up near the back of the pack.  One of my favorite memories is all of us walking together (with NO ONE behind us), coming up to the first water stop and having the volunteers go absolutely nuts when they saw us.  They cheered “Inside Out, Inside Out” in unison and took selfies with us as we went by.

As we stopped for an EPIC Big Thunder Railroad photo op, our friend Cindy Rodriguez-Copey, who had been running near us almost the entire race (and was gracious enough to take some mid-race photos for us) lamented that she hadn’t seen Nicole or Katy the entire race – which was odd – as they run ALL the runDisney races.  We started to laugh and explained that she’d been running with them almost the entire race – as Nicole was Joy and Katy was Fear.  She hadn’t recognized them in costume.  That’s when you know you’ve done good 😉

Inside Out - Big Thunder Mountain Photo Op

There are a number of these Disneyland 60th Anniversary photo ops throughout Disneyland…and they are hilarious!

Inside Out - Joy Draging Sadness Across Finish

HAD to be done!

 

 

As we approached the end of the race and the chute to the finish at Downtown Disney we realized we were bringing up the rear of the race.  But it was totally worth it.  We hadn’t had this much fun at a run in ages!  More photos, more fun.  Seeing everyone smile and want to take a photo with us as we ran by made all the hard work (and pre-dawn armpit paining) worth it.

All this fun and all the photo stops meant that it took us 2-hours to complete the 2015 Disneyland 5K.

Yes.  You read that correctly.  It took us 2-hours to complete 3.1 miles – that’s about a 39 minute mile.

And I don’t regret one single second of it! #Winning

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A BIG shout out to some of our runDisney friends who “ran” into us on the Disneyland 5K course.  Check out their race reports here:

Brandi Gilbert (who ran with her mom – they are just the cutest): Funner Runner

Patty Holliday (who psychically dressed up as Bing-Bong and waited (a LONG while) for us at the finish for another epic photo op : My No Guilt Life

Inside Out - Finish Area with No Guilt Life (Bing-Bong)

BIG thanks to Patty Holliday (My No Guilt Life) for waiting so we could get a photo with Bing-Bong.

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Would you “go slow” for a good time?  

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces.

Perfect Goofy Gail & Delightful Dopey Kimberly

Race Report: Vertigo Night Trail Run or How I (literally) hit the trail

Race Report: Vertigo Night Trail Run or How I (literally) hit the trail

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THANK goodness it cooled down for the start of the race…118 degrees would have just been nuts 😉

Living in Arizona in the summer is akin to living on the surface of sun. Temperatures routinely hit over 100 degrees for months at a time.

That makes summer running (which also happens to be the start of a lot marathon training schedules) a b*%#! And it also means it is really hard to find any local races and, if you do, they are mostly of the 5K duration and start pre-dawn.

Vertigo Night Trail Run Start/Finish Village

Vertigo Night Trail Run Start/Finish Village

Thank goodness that the Arizona summer months bring several full moons and the Aravaipa Running Insomniac Night Trail Run Series. This is a series of 7 night trail runs in the greater Phoenix area from May to November (and, trust me, it’s still plenty hot in November in Phoenix).

With welcoming names like Sinister, Thrasher, and Punisher this series is an awesome addition to the local summer running calendar.

Last night I ran the Vertigo 31K, my second Insomniac Series race this year.

Race distances offered included a 52K (5 loops of the 6.5 mile Sonoran Competitive Track trail at White Tank Mountain Regional Park), a 31K (3 loops), and a 10K (1 loop).

The raging river on the race course the day before the race.

The raging river on the race course the day before the race.

This trail featured steep inclines, swooping turns, technical descents, and rugged terrain – made all the more challenging by a huge thunderstorm and lots of running water the night before the race. So much running water, the road leading up to the park was closed the night before the race due to flooding!

The start of the race was staggered based on distance with the 52K starting a 7:00pm, followed by the 31K at 7:30pm and the 10K at 8:00pm.

Runners, even trail runners, are only so crazy so the combination of the distances, technical nature of the course, and the fact that it had “cooled down” to a mild 113 degrees by 7:00pm kept the race numbers manageable. This was great, as runners for all distances shared the same 6.5 mile trail loop. It was just enough runners that you didn’t feel like you were out in the middle of nowhere by yourself in the dark – every 10 – 15 minutes you would run by someone/have someone run by you. Add in a great start/finish line village and a remote aid station at mile 4.5 on the loop and it was just peaceful enough to allow you to enjoy the quiet and the stars.

Hot weather tempered my desire to blaze the trails with speed. It was 113 degrees at the start at 7:00pm and still 95 degrees when I finished around 1:00am. Still better than running during the day in full sun (and even hotter temperatures), but not cool by any stretch of the imagination!

Screen Shot 2015-08-02 at 3.19.06 PM

See that spike in elevation each mile…ouch!

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I took it easy on the first 2 laps, which included a decent stop at the end of the second lap to really rehydrate, take my shoes off for a few minutes to help cool me down (and allow for some blister TLC), and drink something other than G2 and water (HELLO Diet Coke! Where have you been these last 13 miles…).

Me just prior to the start of the race.

Me just prior to the start of the race.

There was lots of climbing, lots of loose rocks, and some downhill sections that were more nerve-wracking than the 1-mile up hill switchback section that did NOT get more fun on each loop. The recent rains added some additional rocks and deep sand, but did help with controlling dust.

My last lap ended up being my fastest – I’m chalking this up on the fact that it had “cooled down” a bit, I just wanted to be done, and this was the lap where I saw a RATTLESNAKE on the trail. The turbo boosters kicked in and I just wanted to be away from poisonous things that could bite me!

[NOTE: In the moment I never thought the snake was going to bite me – or any of the other runners in the area. Said snake was just slowly slithering across a wide stretch of the trail, minding his own business. A runner ahead of me clearly saw the snake in plenty of time to avoid it and notify those around. That being said, I spent the final 4 miles of the race on EXTREMELY HIGH SNAKE ALERT (as opposed to my normal High Snake Alert status). A snakebite is just something I would like to avoid – especially one that happens at night, on the side of a mountain.]

Vertigo Night Trail Run by the Numbers:

  • Race distance: 31k
  • Trail Loops: 3
  • Total time: 5:13 (Female winner = 2:45 – insane!)
  • Sunset: 1
  • Full moon: 1
  • Fuel belt bottles of G2: 6
  • Fuel belt bottles of water: 5
  • Slices of fresh watermelon: 5
  • Bean burritos: 1 (on last lap, 2 miles from end of race – I may be crazy, but I’m not stupid…)

    My souvenir from the race.  Nothing like (literally) "hitting the trails"...

    My souvenir from the race. Nothing like (literally) “hitting the trails”…

  • Potty stops: 2 prior to start of race (nerves)/2 during race (surprisingly, none as a result of the bean burrito…)
  • Falls: 1
    • Resulting in exactly 1 souvenir black and blue knee
  • Rattlesnakes: 1
    • Followed by exactly 1 freak out
  • Tree roots I thought were rattlesnakes and freaked out for no reason = Too many to count
  • Scorpions: 1
  • Toads: 1
  • Blisters: 4

At the finish, each runner received a race beer glass. The beer garden at the finish benefited Team RWB, which is awesome. Beer for a good cause is a good thing!  I still had an hour drive back home and was REALLY hot, so I partook of some excellent ice water in my finisher’s beer glass – it was seriously good – trust me…

The SWAG! The gear bag was received with our bibs in place of a race shirt and the beer glass you earned at the finish line.

The SWAG! The gear bag was received with our bibs in place of a race shirt and the beer glass you earned at the finish line.

2015 Insomniac Night Trail Race Series

2015 Insomniac Night Trail Race Series

I’ll be back out on the trails at the end of this month for another full moon and some more miles.

Check out the rest of the series here.

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How do you beat the heat during the summer running months?  Have you ever run a race at night?

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces and Instagram/@runalltheraces

Perfect Goofy Gail

Race Report: runDisney’s Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge

Disney Dream in port at Castaway Cay

Disney Dream in port at Castaway Cay

Sometimes it is not possible to #runalltheraces!  This was the case with the scheduling of the Inaugural Castaway Cay 5K and the Inaugural Star Wars 5K.  The Castaway Cay challenge was announced and sold out in record time.  A week later, the runDisney Star Wars races were also announced and we soon realized the boat would arrive back in port in Florida the same day and time the 5k would be starting in California.  Gail & I decided to forgo the cruise in order to #runalltheraces at Star Wars Weekend and asked our friend, Carol Smith, to fill in #runningalltheraces and #drinkingallthedrinks aboard the Disney Dream.  Here’s her report of the Inaugural Castaway Cay 5K:  

Both the Castaway Cay 5K medallion and Challenge Medal

Both the Castaway Cay 5K medallion and Challenge Medal

Go on a cruise after running 48.6 miles and do a 5K? I’m in! Get more bling? I’m really in! With even more Disney? I’m definitely in! I’m Carol Smith, and Kimberly asked me to blog about Disney’s Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5K which was held after the Disney Marathon weekend in January 2015. Thanks Kimberly for letting me do my first ever blog post! To learn more about Kimberly and me see her post of the 2014 Disney Marathon. I’m the one whose name she couldn’t remember!

Fish extender is hung and ready for goodies...

Fish extender is hung and ready for goodies…

To participate in this Disney Castaway Cay Challenge 5K you had to participate in at least one of the races during Disney Marathon weekend, register for this race, and then sail on the Disney Dream cruise that left the day after the Marathon. For doing the Challenge you got the new Castaway Challenge 5K plastic medal and a spiffy inaugural Challenge medal.  I did the Dopey Challenge, so I earned 8 medals for the 5 races. There will be another cruise after Princess weekend. I don’t know if the Challenge medal will be the same, but the plastic medal will be. Disney hasn’t announced any additional special Castaway Challenge events, but the regular 5K will still occur on cruises that go to Castaway Cay.

The line to purchase the official merchandise.

The line to purchase the official merchandise.

Before I get into the race itself I want to share more information about the cruise and onboard shopping for the Challenge.

 

shirt 3 shirt 4 shirt 2

Disney Cruise is a Dream

The cruise was on the Disney Dream, one of the newer of Disney’s cruise ships. As this specific cruise was geared towards people who had run at least one race during the Marathon weekend, there were a lot more adults on the cruise than usual. The crew seemed ready for the “older” crowd with a lot of chairs in the adult pool and staff in the spa, as well as bartenders for beverages. As with other Disney cruises, people decorated their doors to celebrate the cruise and their running. I cruised with a cruise veteran who did the Goofy. The baskets hanging from our door number are for little gifts or swaps (“Fish Extenders”) that we traded with other pre-arranged cruisers. Doing Fish Extender gifts was a great way to meet other cruisers ahead of time and on the cruise. I highly recommend finding a Fish Extender group if you go on a Disney cruise.

bondiband2

Bondi Bands

 

During the four-day cruise we spent most of the first day at sea, a day in Nassau, The Bahamas, a day on Castaway Cay, and a day at sea. This length was enough time to relax and enjoy the cruise without being gone too long from work or other obligations. Onboard there were tons of activities, from bingo and scavenger hunts to massages and movies. We even watched the National Championship football game on the big screen by the main pool. (Go Buckeyes!)

 

Magnet

Magnet

Shopping! (“Expo”)

Since we had picked up our bibs and t shirt at the Marathon weekend, there wasn’t a full expo on the cruise. One of the stores on this ship had exclusive Castaway Cay 5K merchandise for this cruise. Many of the cruisers were afraid that there would not be enough merchandise, so we lined up an hour before the store opened to make sure to get our items.  Our fears were unfounded, however, as there was plenty of everything. There were a few different t-shirts, a medal pin, head bands, and a magnet. The store staff saw the crowd and quickly brought up more merchandise and staff before opening the store. They did an excellent job handling the crowd and ensuring everyone was able to purchase what they wanted. I bought a t-shirt, pin, and car magnet.

Over 700 runners assemble in the theater pre-race...

Over 700 runners assemble in the theater pre-race…

Race itself

After a day at sea and a day in Nassau we had to be in one of the theaters at 5:45am for the race, which started at 7. Compared to the other races during the Marathon weekend this was sleeping late! There were 3 corrals, and each one was in a separate section of the theater. On the screens were pictures of the course map and other race information. A cruise cast member told us what the process was to get off the ship – we needed an ID (driver’s license) and our room key to get onto the island. They were well-organized. runDisney people had come down on the cruise to help run the event, which was needed since there were over 700 runners!

At about 6:15 each corral got to get off the ship to walk to the start.

The sunrise when we got off the boat was spectacular.

The sunrise when we got off the boat was spectacular.

We had to walk about ¾ of a mile to the starting line from where the boat docked. For runners who had done the half or full marathon this walk felt shorter than the walk to the starting corrals of those races, but for the runners who had only done the 5K or 10K during Marathon weekend the walk seemed long. With the sun coming up and the boat in the background, however, the walk was nice and a good way to warm up for the run. The boat is docked to the right of the picture. This was a new route for the 5K and it seems that this is the new route going forward. It is flat, so if you wanted to go really fast you could. For the rest of us, the race had a race clock but no chip timing. They wanted us done in the 16-minute time-frame so we could get back to the boat to change before they let everyone else off the boat, but weren’t strict about it. Thanks to The Kessel Runner for this map.

The NEW course

The NEW course

Since the race was small (for Disney) I got to do things I never get to do. I was in Corral B! I’m never that close! Here I am with Angela Austin Rubright, who had also done the Dopey and was going to California for Star Wars weekend after the cruise!  I got to see actual corral tape!  I was close to the starting line at the actual start of the race! For a true middle of the pack runner these experiences were awesome.

corralsstart

The race was announced not by Rudy, but by one of the ship’s officers. He’s the one who also stars in many of the safety and information videos on the ship’s TV. Mickey was also there! There weren’t any fireworks for the corral starts and no national anthem, but we were in the Bahamas. I don’t think we would have recognized the Bahamas national anthem if it were played.

mickey

After working up the crowd the first corral went and then we were off! There were a few characters on the course. I’ve never run a Disney 5K where I’ve been able to take pictures so I took full advantage this time!  The cruise director and another cast member were also on the course “cheering” us on.    The “balloon ladies” were in the first corral instead of the back of the race and tried to take me off the course! But at the end I got my medals! We also got water, Powerade, and runDisney snackboxes. Then back to the ship for a shower and to change into beach attire for the day. The race backdrop was available that evening (pirate night) for pictures.

balloons bondi band

Overall the race was well run, the cruise was fabulous, and everyone seemed to have fun. I certainly did. I’m jealous of everyone going on the cruise after Princess weekend. Maybe Kimberly will let me stowaway in her suitcase.

pulto

Carol

alltheraces

Did you run the Inaugural Castaway Cay 5K?  What was YOUR experience?

2014 Run All The Races Year Wrap Up

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25 runDisney Medals for 2014

2014 was a heck of a year!  We want to thank you all for supporting us by reading our blog and following us on Instagram, Twitter and our Facebook page.  Perfectly Goofy Gail and I ran a total of 31 races/341.78 miles TOGETHER in 2014.  What makes this more impressive, at least to me, is that we live 2,500 miles apart!

June 2014...

June 2014…

So before we finish up our 2014 race recaps (Tower of Terror, Wine & Dine, Avengers and Las Vegas Full among others) and jump to our tips for Running All The runDisney Races of 2015…let’s take a moment to pat ourselves on the back 😉

Did I tell you I placed 2nd in my age group.  Hey - did I tell you I PLACED 2nd IN MY AGE GROUP? Did I, did I?

Did I tell you I placed 2nd in my age group. Hey – did I tell you I PLACED 2nd IN MY AGE GROUP? Did I, did I?

Perfectly Goofy Gail’s Stats for 2014:

  • 14-5k’s
  • 8-10k’s
  • 16-Half Marathons
  • 8-Full Marathons
  • 11-other distances including 1 ultra
  • 2-Age Group Awards
  • 57 races with a total of 707.6 racing miles
Hershey Half - worked hard for a 2:17 finish!

Hershey Half – worked hard for a run/walk/run 2:17 finish!

Kimberly’s Stats for 2014:

  • 17-5k’s
  • 7-10k’s
  • 14-Half Marathons
  • 4-Full Marathons
  • 8-other distances including 1 duathlon
  • 50 races with a total of 485.49 racing miles

 Favorite Race Run Together:

Perfectly Goofy Gail: Walt Disney World Marathon – it was the VERY first race we ran together (in fact we met in person just 4 days earlier at the Race Expo) and the race that launched our friendship. Can’t think of a better reason for it to be my favorite!

Best photo of 2014 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend!

Best photo of 2014 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend!

Kimberly:  Tinker Bell 5K – it was the SECOND race we ran together were I didn’t want to lay down and die!  It was beyond fun because we dressed up and stopped at all the character stops! I just wish we had a photo of us trying to get UP and OFF the stage above!!!

2014 Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 Miler.  We'd been "dying" to dress as the Haunted Mansion Stretching Room Portraits...

2014 Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 Miler. We’d been “dying” to dress as the Haunted Mansion Stretching Room Portraits…

Favorite runDisney Costume:

Perfectly Goofy Gail: If I can, I’m going to group the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Weekend races together. Out Hitchhiking Ghosts and Haunted Mansion Stretching Room Portrait costumes were big hits.  We had just as much fun taking photos with fellow runners and Cast Members as we did running the races ourselves.

2014 Happy Haunted Trail Run

2014 Happy Haunted Trail Run 5K. As much as we tried, no one picked us up on course and drove us to the finish – no matter how much we hitchhiked!

 

Kimberly: I have to choose the Jingle Jungle 5K costumes.  Christmas is my favorite time of year and these costumes were so much fun to wear …unless you were trying to run a 5k 😉

Jingle Jungle 5K

Just looking at these Jingle Jungle 5K costumes makes me want to sing carols loud for everyone to hear!

Favorite Run All the Races RACE Memory of 2014:

Perfectly Goofy Gail: Kimberly was the very first person I ran a race with at Walt Disney World that was willing to ride Expedition Everest with me in the middle of the marathon!

Perfectly Goofy Gail's first time riding Expedition Everest during a race - 2014 Walt Disney  World Marathon!

Perfectly Goofy Gail’s first time riding Expedition Everest during the 2014 Walt Disney World Marathon!

Kimberly: “Getting close to the wildlife” at Ragnar Adirondacks – Ultra.  We haven’t shared the story….yet. 

2014 Rock 'n Roll Las Vegas Full Marathon.  You wouldn't think it, but that hot tea was AWESOME with that BIG beer! So cold...so very, very cold.

2014 Rock ‘n Roll Las Vegas Full Marathon. You wouldn’t think it, but that hot tea was AWESOME with that BIG beer! So cold…so very, very cold.

Favorite Drink All The Drinks of 2014:

Perfectly Goofy Gail: While technically not an “adult beverage” I have to go with the hot tea (with a side of BIG beer) we had after finishing the Rock ‘n Roll Las Vegas Marathon.  We’d completed the Disneyland Avengers Half Marathon that morning in California, hopped a flight to Nevada, and ran the full that evening.  We got wind blown at Disneyland and ran through an arctic blast in Las Vegas.  I just wanted to sit down and GET WARM!

Kimberly: Oompa Loompas of course!!!  Any cocktail served in a pineapple wins!  And although I love Trader Sam’s, I do love a Lapu Lapu at the Tambu Lounge at Disney’s Polynesian Resort.

Lapu Lapu's at the Poly

Lapu Lapu’s at the Poly

 

Favorite Selfie:

Perfectly Goofy Gail: SO MANY to choose from, but our Disneyland Club 33 bathroom fainting couch selfie is my winner.  Talk about a bucket list day!

Disneyland Club 33 bathroom fainting couch.  We're just gonna move in...I'm positive no one will care ;)

Disneyland Club 33 bathroom fainting couch. We’re just gonna move in…I’m positive no one will care 😉

Kimberly: It is a family tradition to take our photo with the Wooden Indian on Main Street U.S.A.  Every race that runs up or down Main Street U.S.A., we stop for an #usie.  Here’s just ONE of many we posed for during 2014. 

One of many #WoodenIndianSelfies of 2014

One of many #WoodenIndianSelfies of 2014

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1511819_10205297488659858_7899833204330694783_oHow was your 2014?  We’d LOVE to hear about your running year in review!

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces.

Perfect Goofy Gail & (soon to be Delightful Dopey) Kimberly

Race Report: Wine & Dine Half Marathon or Would you like WHINE with that half marathon?..

How bad was the weather? We dressed up as ACTUAL runners ;)

How bad was the weather? We dressed up as ACTUAL runners 😉

Part of the problem of having a #RunAllTheRaces philosophy is that we run SO MANY races that we don’t always have the time to talk (and BLOG) about all the races.  Believe it or not, we both ACTUALLY have JOBS – a runner’s got to do something to pay for all those races…

We still owe everyone a BUNCH of race reports on other events from earlier this year, but the WEATHER was such a factor at last weekend’s runDisney Wine & Dine Half Marathon that we just had to post about this race next!

BLOG DISCLAIMER: It was SO wet and rainy that, for the first time in #RunAllTheRaces history, we did NOT wear a costume and we did NOT stop and take photos on the course.  It was so wet and rainy we ACTUALLY RAN the race!

So, how wet and rainy was it?  In our collective 10+ years of running races at Disney Theme Parks, the only event where the weather was worse was 2010 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend (also known around runDisney circles as “The Cold Year”) where it snowed (yes, you read that correctly – SNOWED) and sleeted and was generally miserable for the entire half and full marathons. FYI: Frozen water stops and slippery, ice-covered roads are no bueno!

In fact, it was so wet and rainy that a simple blog description just won’t do it justice.

So – in our first “How To” blog post – we are providing you with instructions on how to re-create the event at home so you can fully understand the experience.  You’re welcome 😉

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How To: Recreate the 2014 Wine & Dine Half Marathon Experience in the “Comfort” of Your Own Home

  1. Run around all day.  Wait until 7:00pm to start your experience.

    An umbrella.  And yes - that's a necessity - NOT a costume piece!

    An umbrella. And yes – that’s a necessity – NOT a costume piece!

  2. Get fully dressed in your running attire. And we mean fully dressed; including shoes, fuel belt, race bib.  As it is a runDisney event, this probably includes an elaborate costume you spent weeks planning and even longer making.
  3. Go into your bathroom and turn on the shower.  Not too hot, mind you.  The water temperature should seem warm enough to be “not so bad” at first, but not so warm as to be enjoyable for any length of time.
  4. Get in your shower.  Fully dressed. Yep.  Just hang out there under the gently falling drops and imagine yourself in the corrals, waiting for the start.  Spend a few moments trying to convince yourself that it looks like it’s clearing and surely it will stop before the race starts.
  5. Begin jogging in place.  Still in your shower.  Still under the running water.  Take a sip of your race beverage of choice and realize, as you tip your head back, water hits you directly in your eyeballs.
  6. Continue jogging in place under the running water for the time it normally takes you to run a half marathon plus a crappy weather factor of 10%.  You’ll need that extra time to run around giant puddles, avoid falling on slippery surfaces, and stop to wring-out your progressively heavier water-logged clothing.
  7. Swear at yourself for even signing up for this race in the first place.  Feel free to include anyone else who encouraged you throughout your training and isn’t actually running in this mess in your rant.
  8. Finish your race.  Have someone place a cold, wet medal around your neck and a space blanket around your shoulders.
  9. Decide ” *&%# it! I paid for the After Party.  I’m still going.”  Have someone hand you a beer and a snack while you continue to stand in your shower.
  10. Go out to your garage.  Stand around outside your car for approximately 20 minutes to simulate waiting for the bus back to your resort hotel.
  11. Get in your car.  Turn on the air conditioner. Hang out for 45 minutes.  Cold? Yep. But the roads are closed for the race and you have to leave property and come back around to get to your stop.
  12. Get out of your car and walk around the block.  Turns out, the event bus drops you off at the Convention Center – which feels like a 3-mile walk from your room.
  13. Swear at yourself for even signing up for this race in the first place.  Feel free to include anyone else who encouraged you throughout your training and isn’t actually still out in this mess in your rant.
  14. Go back into your bathroom and turn on the shower again.  Good news – this time you can take a nice hot shower!
  15. Fall into bed.  Sleep like a rock – as you are exhausted from this entire experience.
  16. Wake up.  Decide it wasn’t so bad.  Check the runDisney website to see when registration opens for next year.
Finishers of the 1st Annual Wine & Dine Wet T-Shirt Contest

Finishers of the 1st Annual Wine & Dine Wet T-Shirt Contest

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What was the worst weather you ever raced in?  What did you learn from the experience for next time?

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces.

Perfect Goofy Gail & (soon to be Delightful Dopey) Kimberly

Race Report: Inaugural Cedar Point Run & Ride 5K and Half Marathon or That first hill is gonna be a…

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WTH?!?! That first hill is gonna be a BITCH!..

Generally speaking, in order to #RunAllTheRaces, we have to spend a fair amount of time coordinating schedules, planning travel, and making reservations to ensure we both get to the same place at the same time.  Occasionally though, the stars seem to align and we get the chance to run a race together that we just normally wouldn’t think could happen.

The 2014 Inaugural Cedar Point Run & Run Weekend was just one of those races.  Kimberly and her family had a relative’s wedding in Ohio and Perfectly Goofy Gail had parents that live in Ohio and were begging for a visit – and BOTH events just happened to be scheduled around a race weekend.  Talk about a cosmic alignment!

Entrance gates to Cedar Point welcoming all the runners, families, and friends.

Entrance gates to Cedar Point welcoming all the runners, families, and friends.

We even managed to cajole everyone into participating in the weekend’s fun.  Kimberly, her 2 kids, and Gail ran the Millennium Force 5K on Saturday and Kimberly and Gail ran the Half Marathon on Sunday – while Gail’s parents volunteered at the Mile 5/12 water stop.  Kimberly’s husband Jack assisted by volunteering to #RideAllTheRollerCoasters – what a team player 😉

Packet pick-up was held outside the theme park at one of Cedar Point’s hotels, Castaway Bay.  This was a local race, so it was billed simply as Packet Pick-Up, and it was exactly as advertised.  It was not a full scale race expo but we didn’t mind.

As part of the entrance fee for the Half Marathon each runner received entry into Cedar Point after 4:00 pm on Friday and all-day Saturday and Sunday – and we were all about #RideAllTheRollerCoasters.  Additionally, runners received a discounted parking rate of $15.00 for Friday – Sunday (instead of $15.00 a day).  So for $105.00, you got entry into the half marathon, entry into Cedar Point theme park after 4:00 pm on Friday and all-day Saturday and Sunday, and 3 days of parking.

The entire Markey Family and Perfect Goofy Gail screaming through the Magum XL-200.

The entire Markey Family and Perfect Goofy Gail screaming through the Magum XL-200.

For those that were running the 5K or coming to the race to cheer on family and friends, a discount was in place that allowed purchase of theme park tickets: $55.00 for after 4:00 pm on Friday and all-day Saturday and Sunday or $33.00 a day.  This was a steal, as standard admission to Cedar Point runs $50.00 a day, or $25.00 a day after 5:00 pm.

Cedar Point, know as America’s Roller Coast, is located in Sandusky, Ohio on the shores of Lake Erie.  Opened in 1870, it is the second-oldest operating amusement park in the United States.

Cedar_Point_Ohio_037_Historic_MarkerCedar Point has 16 roller coasters – which is the second-most in the world – 16 thrill rides, 10 family rides, and 3 water rides, excluding the rides in Soak City (a separate water park located just outside Cedar Point).

The park has reached several milestones. It is the only amusement park in the world with four roller coasters taller than 200 feet (61 m) – Magnum XL-200Millennium ForceWicked Twister, and Top Thrill Dragster – and is the only park with roller coasters in all four height classifications. Cedar Point has also received the Golden Ticket Award for “Best Amusement Park in the World” from Amusement Today for 16 consecutive years.  As of 2013, the park is the most visited seasonal amusement park in the United States with an estimated 3.38 million visitors in 2013.  The park also has several buildings that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

In other words, Cedar Point kicks some serious roller coaster butt!

Over the course of the weekend, we managed to get in both the Millennium Force 5K and the Half Marathon as well as all the great roller coasters in the park.

Kimberly, her daughter, and Gail on Top Fuel Dragster. When built in 2003, it was the first full circuit roller coaster to exceed 400 feet (120 m) in height, and was the tallest roller coaster in the world. The ride launches, accelerating to a speed of 120 mph (190 km/h) in 3.8 seconds. Shortly after reaching its maximum velocity, the train begins its ascent up a 90-degree incline, twisting 90 degrees counter-clockwise before climbing over the 420-foot (130 m) top hat. Upon descending, the track twists 270 degrees before leveling out, allowing the train to be stopped by the magnetic brakes.

The gang, ready to run the Inaugural Cedar Point Millennium Force 5K.

The gang, ready to run the Inaugural Cedar Point Millennium Force 5K.

Saturday: Millennium Force 5K

Early morning car selfies with the Markey Family on the way to the Cedar Point Millennium Force 5K

Early morning car selfies with the Markey Family on the way to the Cedar Point Millennium Force 5K

Saturday morning came early and Kimberly and Perfectly Goofy Gail managed to drag the Markey kids out of bed, into their running gear, and to the start of the 5K.

The ENTIRE 3.1 miles of the 5K course was in and around Cedar Point.  What a way to run a race – surrounded by roller coasters.  While the rides were not open to jump on, many of them were running.  There’s something awesome about hearing that roller coaster “swoosh” as you go running by!

On course, there were PLENTY of water stops staffed by enthusiastic volunteers that really seemed happy to be there.  We finished the course right outside the main gate, next to the shore of Lake Erie – which gave us a lovely breeze.

As part of the 5K, all participants received a race-specific T-shirt.  Rubber medallions were given to all the younger finishers.

Sunday: Cedar Point Half Marathon

Looking pretty happy (and not that hot) at the start of the Inaugural Cedar Point Half Marathon.

Looking pretty happy (and not that hot) at the start of the Inaugural Cedar Point Half Marathon.

Sunday morning, Kimberly, Gail, and Gail’s parents all jumped in the car and headed to the race start a bit early, as we needed to drop off Gail’s parents at the Mile 5/12 water stop and then make it to the start line with time for a pre-race potty stop.

About 700 runners started the Half Marathon on the banks of Lake Erie.  This was very much a local race that just happened to be held at a theme park.

We began with a loop around the parking lot before heading into Cedar Point.  The first 5 miles covered most of the 5K course (with some additional loops to add distance) before heading across the Cedar Point Causeway into downtown Sandusky, once again along the banks of Lake Erie.

Halfway across the Cedar Point Causeway was Mile 5 and our first chance to say “HI!” to Gail’s parents.  They got a great location – in part because we would double-back and get to see them twice, but also because they were on the causeway and got an amazing breeze.  The day was WAY hot and humid and the causeway offered the best breeze of the ENTIRE course.

RUUUUUUNNNNN! Save yourself from the heat.

RUUUUUUNNNNN!
Save yourself from the heat.

Miles 5 – 12 of the course went into downtown Sandusky in a loop back towards the Cedar Point Causeway and the theme park.  As the race started about 10 minutes late at 6:55 am, it got hot FAST and the miles outside the theme park (and away from the distraction of the roller coasters and breeze of the causeway) got sticky really quickly.

Mile 13 gave us our final chance to get a personalized “Way to go!” from Gail’s parents before finishing the final trip across the causeway and crossing the finish line with a view of the Cedar Point area marina.

The Half Marathon finish line and our new on-course friends: Melissa Schmitt & Mike Rigelsky (who just happen to runDisney!).

The Half Marathon finish line and our new on-course friends: Melissa Schmitt & Mike Rigelsky (who just happen to runDisney!).

All Half Marathon participants received a long-sleeved race-specific tech shirt and an medal with an AWESOME ribbon, as well as two 13.1 race magnets.  Wasn’t really sure about a long-sleeved shirt in July but, if you’re from somewhere where it gets cold and snowy in the winter, wearing the Cedar Point Run & Ride Half Marathon shirt while training in the yuck would definitely get you jazzed up about the return of summer and the opening of Cedar Point.

Half Marathon schwag!

Half Marathon schwag!

All in all, this was great inaugural race and we’re pretty excited about what’s in store for next year and the other Run & Ride races that are held at King’s Island and Carowinds.  After all, #RunAllTheRaces and #RideAllTheRollerCoasters!

UP NEXT: An interview with the Run & Ride Race Directors on the race and their future plans and input from Gail’s parents on their volunteer experience.

Are you a roller coaster person?  Have you been to Cedar Point?

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces.

Perfect Goofy Gail & (soon to be Delightful Dopey) Kimberly

 

 

Race Report: Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Hat Trick Challenge or Hey, did we tell you it was hot and hilly?..

We love us some Runner’s World and when we heard they were hosting a series of races that included the chance to run Heartbreak Hill of Boston Marathon fame – WITHOUT having to cut 1+ hours off our marathon times to qualify for the Boston Marathon – we were IN.

Our first Runner's World Cover...we're kinda a big deal (at least in our own minds...)!

Our first Runner’s World Cover…we’re kinda a big deal (at least in our own minds…)!

Why run just one race with Runner’s World when you can #RunAllTheRaces?!?!

The inaugural Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half Marathon & Festival took place on the campus of Boston College in Newton, MA, June 7 – 8, 2014. Thousands of runners – including kids and dogs – showed up for a weekend of racing, seminars, movies, and more.

We were ALL IN as usual and this entailed running the 5K, getting about a 30 minute break and then running the 10K on Saturday morning and then coming back for more in the form of a half marathon on Sunday morning.

Or, in the case of the Runner's World Heartbreak Hill Hat Trick, they eat us - 2 days in a row!

Or, in the case of the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Hat Trick, they eat us – 2 days in a row!

 

 

The weekend included the privilege (or horror, depending on how you look at it) of running the infamous Heartbreak Hill and surrounding Newton hills 4 TIMES. Yep, you read that correctly, 4 TIMES. #RunAllTheNewtonHills

Down Heartbreak Hill and Kelley Hill at the beginning of the 10K (Opportunity #1), a 3 mile-ish “break” [NOTE: The course description states that the course flattens after Kelley Hill. We will tell you that FLAT is a relative term…it was “flat” only if you call “flat” not going up a giant hill], followed by slogging back UP Kelley Hill and Heartbreak Hill at Miles 5 – 6 (Opportunity #2). And another chance to get at it during the Half Marathon the next day. Down Heartbreak Hill and Kelley Hill – this time at Mile 3 (Opportunity #3) – before getting a 5 mile-ish “break” and the final opportunity to conquer the hills of Newton at Miles 10 – 13 (Opportunity #4).

We weren’t the only crazy people to come out and take on Heartbreak Hill. We got the chance to see, run with, and meet TONS of our runner friends, which made the weekend (and the hills) worth every sore leg muscle.

Mickey Milers: Caryn, Jennifer Teig Von Hoffman, Liam Scribner-MacLean, Mike Scopa, Perfect Goofy Gail, Michelle Scribner-MacLean, Rudy Novotny, and Kimberly doing “The Eddie.”

Stop running and take a photo? Sure (we're up for ANY reason to take a break)! Alison Jakeman Nicklas, Perfect Goofy Gail, the Heartbreak Hill Running Company Gorilla (he was out BOTH days cheering us on), Kimberly, and Pamela Potter Frost.

Stop running and take a photo? Sure (we’re up for ANY reason to take a break)!
Alison Jakeman Nicklas, Perfect Goofy Gail, the Heartbreak Hill Running Company Gorilla (he was out BOTH days cheering us on), Kimberly, and Pamela Potter Frost.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So just how bad IS Heartbreak Hill?

On paper it doesn’t seem so bad. It climbs a mere 88 feet over four-tenths of a mile.  It only goes up at a grade of 3.3%.  What makes it so hard, aside from running it several times over the same weekend, is that it is the first or last of the series of 4 Newton hills (depending on whether you were coming or going on the Runner’s World courses). The thought of hitting this series of hills in the UP direction at Mile 21-ish of the Boston Marathon makes our legs hurt just thinking about it!

Hey Pammy, did we tell you it was hot and Hilly?..  Note the forced smiles - and we're not even at the up portion of the Newton hills yet!

Hey Pammy, did we tell you it was hot and Hilly?.. Note the forced smiles – and we’re not even at the up portion of the Newton hills yet!

Add to the hills of Newton the heat and humidity of a New England summer’s day and we couldn’t resist commenting on how hot and hilly it was to everyone and anyone that would listen – especially our friend Pammy – who joined us on Sunday for the Half Marathon.

In spite of the heat and the hills, we managed to take enough pictures and video for a recap of the entire weekend.  Good news is that by the 10K and Half Marathon we were “running” slow enough that everything is in perfect focus 😀

NOTE: Bonus points for doing a burpee every time we mention that it’s hot or hilly or hot and hilly!

 

Check out the 2014 Participant Guide here.

If you are interested in receiving notification when next year’s event dates are announced, click here.

#RunAllTheRaces #GetAllTheBling

#RunAllTheRaces
#GetAllTheBling

Have you qualified for Boston and run this storied course only to experience Heartbreak Hill at Mile 21? Do you dream of racing up Heartbreak Hill? Tell us about it!

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @RunAllTheRaces and like us on Facebook/runalltheraces.

Perfect Goofy Gail & (soon to be Delightful Dopey) Kimberly

P.S. Hey, did we tell you it was hot and hilly?..