runDisney Wine and Dine Half

Let me start this post by saying I LOVE DISNEY. My family has gone to Disney countless times and fully supports my runDisney habit since they come down to cheer or make that chEAR me on! My first half marathon was during the Marathon weekend in 2011. It was truly a magical experience for me and I had an amazing time with my mom and sister chEARing me on from the side lines! And, as a Mainer, it was AMAZING to be out of the freezing cold for a few days!


My First Half!

I moved to Florida later that year and began to run as many Disney races as possible! I ran the inaugural Tower of Terror 10 miler in 2012, the Wine and Dine Half 2o12 (my parents loved spectating this race and scoped out the food for when I finished!), and the Disney Marathon in Jan 2013! I signed up for Wine and Dine this summer because I knew I couldn’t miss out on this race! My boyfriend took the plunge and signed up for his first half!

Now as many of know, I’ve been sick a LOT the past few months and wasn’t allowed to run the Chicago Marathon. Needless to say, I got a total of two runs in during the two months leading up to the half. Right when I was starting to get some last minute runs in, I got sick again and was put back on antibiotics that I finished a couple days before the race. I didn’t have any PR hopes for this race. For me, it was going to be an accomplishment just to finish it!

Regardless, I was SO excited for this race. I got to Disney for the Meet Up and Charlie drove up on Saturday. We spent the day getting our race packets, carbo loading (can you tell we destroyed that bread basket), and hanging out in our PRINCESS room to rest our feet


Looking excited! Or just in a food coma from the bread!


Even though I had no expectations for the race, I was still very nervous! We took a nap until about 6 when I woke and bolted up and out of bed to start showering and eating a light snack of a Clif Bar and coffee! Clif Bars are my go to pre race food. The perfect size for me and doesn’t sit too heavily in my stomach. However, it turns out the coffee didn’t end up being strong enough… Oops! I, of course, had Charlie take some pre race pics!


I actually didn’t wear the Minnie Mouse ears during the race because I tend to be particular about how things feel during a race. But I did like to pretend that my polka dot shorts were a play on Minnie Mouse… just in a different color scheme! At that point, it was time to head off to the buses and start the great wait. I love Disney races, but getting to the race so early and sitting around for so long always makes me nervous! But, as always, the DJ did a great job leading an awesome dance party and we even saw an engagement on the big screen! Such a great way to get pumped up and shake out a few nerves!


Ready to run!

Time flew, and we were off to the corrals. Charlie was in the corral ahead of me, but stayed back in mine so we could at least start together. His original goal had been to just finish, but then his competitive nature took over and he wanted to race it. Yes, the kid who did one long run of 8 miles. We ran our own races which I think was such a good thing. I just decided to go by what felt okay and, for once, not stare at my watch. I had a few minor mishaps like having to use the porta potty at mile one (I knew I should have done one last bathroom break before getting into the corral), and my contact popped out 3 times!, and then a final restroom break at mile 11 in Hollywood Studios. Oh, well! This was not my best race, by far! But, I was actually really really satisfied with myself. When I started running, I never would have imagined being able to push my body 13.1 miles without walking  with no training! It’s amazing to see what my body is now capable of!

I met Charlie at the bag check and he watched my stuff while I changed. Note to readers: if you run this race, bring a pack of Wet Wipes! They are so helpful and the women in the tent around me l0ved me! While it wasn’t a real shower, it was the next best thing. We grabbed our wine as we left the finishing area.

Oh, by the way. Charlie ran his first half marathon with NO training in 1:48! I am SO proud and so excited for him! I think he’s caught the running bug. From there, we went to the after party first stopping for Champagne and the Hawaiian Kahlua Pork Bun–my FAVORITE! We made our way around the park and left the park once the party ended, carrying desserts back to the hotel. We were exhausted, our belly’s full, and had smiles on our faces! Yet another magical Disney race in the books!

Going into this race, I was so nervous about how I would do. Well, now I know I can do anything and am now really wishing I had signed up for the half marathon at Marathon weekend at Disney! I can’t believe I won’t be there this year to run through Cinderella’s castle. I guess this teaches me to go with my instinct and just sign up! I can’t recommend Disney races highly enough so go do one!



RunDisney’s #WineDineHalfMeetUp Recap!


Sorry for the delay in getting this up! I had my tonsillectomy this week, so I was running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off last week. The recovery hasn’t been much fun, but going through the pictures from the Meet Up was definitely fun!

When I saw my name on the list of people accepted to the Meet Up, I was ecstatic! When Chelsea and I did the Disney Marathon last year, we had tried to get into that Meet Up with no luck. Because I love Disney and am a HUGE RunDisney fan, I knew I was in for a treat at this event. A few extra hotel nights were added, and I was good to go! I ended up leaving work a little late so had a mad dash to my hotel, change, and head back over to Epcot.

Man oh man, was it worth it! I ended up meeting Kim and Jen in the parking lot and we ended up doing the Fast Pass to the Test Track together


I have to say, runners, in general, are so friendly and welcoming, and when you add Disney to that mix, it is a fabulous time! After our Test Track experience, we were brought to a special viewing area for the Illuminations show. We were so close, you could feel the heat from the fireworks and flames!


After our special viewing of Illuminations, we got to meet Chef Mickey!


And we got to sample some goodies from the Food and Wine Festival! Yum! And that is a baby glass of vegan wine. It was my first time trying vegan wine and it was delicious!


After some food, we sat down for some great talks by Jeff Galloway, Tara, the RunDisney Nutritionist, and the New Balance team! Apparently, they will be adding customizable race insoles for their RunDisney shoes this year. I can’t wait to pick up mine next year!


We ended the night with an easy run around Epcot and a Champagne toast! I ended up speaking to Jeff Galloway about Bowdoin and Joanie! I had no idea he had stayed at Bowdoin before heading over to Munich for the Olympics!


What an amazing first Meet Up experience! I can’t wait for more! 

Check back later for my race recap!

Countdown to Wine and Dine!

I’ll start this by saying I got sick again. Seriously. Story of my life. These tonsils can’t come out soon enough! Luckily my awesome doctor said I could still run the Wine and Dine Half Marathon. I just haven’t trained. This will truly be me gutting out a race. I am beyond terrified and this will not be a race I’m trying to PR. 

On the bright side, I leave for the Meet Up at Epcot on Thursday! We received our itineraries today and I am BEYOND excited to experience my first meet up. Disney was my first half marathon and I love Disney races. I love that Wine and DIne is a night race. Does anyone else feel that night races makes it go by faster? or is that just me?

I need to start laying out my clothes to pack! I’ll check back tomorrow to go through my checklist.