Friday, January 31, 2014

A PERFECT Valentine's Day Gift!

Do you and your significant other celebrate Valentine's Day?

My hubby and I don't. My thought is, I don't want/ need ONE day during the year that I am shown I am loved, I SHOULD KNOW IT EVERY DAY!


With that being said, I know TONS of folks that do celebrate it. And just because hubs and I don't necessarily get all ooey-gooey on February 14th, doesn't mean I still don't love gifts ;)

And boy oh boy, did I find one GREAT option for the runner in your life - whether YOU are that runner and you want to get this for yourself (or leave hints for your "better half" to get you one), your spouse or significant other is into the active lifestyle and you want to help support them in their journey, or even if it is a running buddy that you want to send a little gift to!

RunnerBox has a LIMITED EDITION Valentine's Day Gift Box! This special RunnerBox will be filled with products any runner would LOVE to receive. You are even able to personalize it with a "gift note"!


And EVEN BETTER - if you use my Ambassador code you will get 10% off!

So hurry.. don't delay... place your order today! Valentine's Day is just TWO WEEKS AWAY!! {Shoot, that was quite the rhyme if I do say so myself, and I wasn't even trying... I'm a poet and I didn't know it ;)}

Thursday, January 30, 2014

runDisney Meet-Ups

I was lucky enough to be part of the Tinker Bell Meet-Up last January!

Photo Credit: runDisney

[Feel free to check out the blog post I wrote explaining what a "Meet-Up" is and my excitement of being one of the few to be offered a spot at one of them!] A recap of the Meet-Up itself can be found here. If you aren't going to go read the post, please just know IT WAS AWESOME, but really - go read the recap!

I got to meet Jeff Galloway

See Mickey and Minnie in Buena Vista Street

Chat with Sean Astin

And pose with Ali Vincent

Now I understand there were "flaws" with the system. The main one being that you had to STALK the blog ALL DAY LONG (and sometimes ALL NIGHT LONG) to see the notification posted by runDisney. This is OBVIOUSLY a limitation for folks that have a job and cannot be continually hitting refresh on a website 24/7. Another issue was the fact that they normally announced the Meet-Up very close to the race weekends, meaning if you were coming in town for the race you may have to adjust your travel arrangements.

I also understand that runDisney is a company - and one that KNOWS how to make money!

You see, the Meet-Ups were a free event. Obviously Disney was hoping that the attendees would blast their social media outlets about their experiences, drumming up excitement for runDisney, the Meet-Ups, and the races themselves. And BLAST away they did. Twitter was always a-buzz with live tweets from the Meet-Ups, Instagram was full of pictures from the event, Facebook groups were all wondering who would speak or make an appearance, etc. Now please don't take it to mean that I believe Disney was "out" money for putting on these Meet-Ups, because I don't think that at all, but I do think it was an extremely generous activity that they put on.

Well, things started to change back around the WDW Marathon weekend. As per usual, folks were stalking the blog, waiting for news about the Meet-Up to be posted. They stalked and stalked, and nothing came... Finally it was released (forgive me if I get the details wrong, but this is how I remember it happening), through a blogger - not directly from runDisney - that they would not be doing a Meet-Up. Now they weren't saying they were NEVER going to do one again, but that they weren't doing one for that race weekend. Then Tink came and went without a Meet-Up (I was actually crossing my fingers they would have one, because even though I didn't run the race this year, I am local so would be able to make it up for the Meet-Up if I got my typing fingers going quick enough to send my email out in time).

This past week was public registration for the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend. [Check out my blog post about how QUICKLY everything sold out this year here.] It didn't take long for folks to realize there was something new on the registration page... A "Welcome Event".


This looks very similar to the Meet-Ups that they used to put on...

Now shoot, like I said before, although I love Disney for its MAGIC and the fact that it makes me feel like a kid again, I realize (even if I don't want to admit it) that they are a business and one that is in the money-making business. And whoa-doggy, they have a GOLDMINE with us runners!

runDisney participants were willing to PAY for this new addition because the Welcome Event is SOLD OUT! Yep, that's right, YOU CAN'T REGISTER FOR THIS ANY LONGER, THERE IS NO ROOM IN THE INN. The price was $89 per person. I don't know if I could put a price tag on the Meet-Up I was honored to be a part of, but obviously Disney, Runner's World (who is helping to put on the event), and runners themselves saw value in it for that price.

To be honest, I am sort of surprised how long it took for runDisney to start charging for the Meet-Up. Yes, "free" publicity is nice, but man, us runDisney fans are willing to pay a PRETTY PENNY to get into the races, so I was just a little shocked that they would have such an AWESOME event without it costing the attendees anything.

I don't plan on signing up for any of the Welcome Events - but obviously never say never. I just know me and I am "frugal", so don't think that I personally would be willing to pay for the event, but I know the experience will definitely be MAGICAL (not to mention getting into the Expo an hour early, especially when it comes to picking up the runDisney gear, could be priceless to some). I am definitely excited to hear what those folks that shelled out the $89 will think of the Welcome Event.

Would you (or did you) sign up for a Welcome Event? 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

REVIEW: PocketFuel Naturals

I love getting mail from RunnerBox. I never quite know what to expect, but know it will be great (it's like Christmas in a box). Did you know that all of the products they send out have been tested? They are either tried-and-true products already loved in the running community or they are personally tested by those AMAZING employees at RunnerBox.

In my most recent shipment from RunnerBox I received a couple samples of PocketFuel Naturals

As you have heard me state in the past, I know VERY LITTLE about fueling. I don't really know when to do it, how to do it, what works best for my body, etc. The little that I have learned I seemed to have stumbled across accidentally.

PocketFuel Naturals recently came out with a new line - the Cold Brew Coffee Energy Shots (which is why I would assume RunnerBox was able to score some to send to me - a way to get the word out about the new product). The three flavors are Vanilla, Mocha, and Java. 

I am not a coffee drinker. I "blame" that on my parents growing up. My dad would bring two Pepsi's with him to work every morning and my mom never drank coffee (until recently that is) so we never even had the smell of it in our house. I have heard you can "acquire" the taste for coffee, but I think I am okay right now sticking with my H2O. Anyway, with that being said, I gave the two coffee flavored fuels to my hubby.

Ryan's "Tools of the Trade" from his Sunday run

Ryan said, "I really liked the coffee flavoring. It tasted good and had an extra little kick of caffeine to get me going. The fuel was a good consistency, not to liquid-y and not too thick, just smooth and easy to eat. The package size was convenient as well; it fits great in my running shorts' pocket."

Although coffee isn't for me, NUTS definitely are! Yum! And thankfully the other flavors that came were some of their nut variety.

I used the Hazelnut Vanilla flavor before my run on last Monday. It had a great flavor. (Warning, I have an "issue" with textures. One reason I never really got into fueling was because of the gooey consistency of other fuels. They remind me of swallowing snot, not something I am too stoked on, which is another reason, along with lack of knowledge, as to why I haven't gotten into the fuel game.) It reminded me of peanut butter, which although somewhat difficult to get swallow, was a lot more appealing than the gooey types of fueling I have seen advertised. {PS I probably didn't "squish and squeeze" the package enough - I'm sure with a little more working around and a little heat it would have been a little smoother. Also, the taste may have made me bias to think it was going to have a nut-butter consistency.}

I took about half of the sample before my run. As I was running I thought to myself, "since it has a similar texture as peanut butter, I bet it would be great on toast". So when I got back from my run that is exactly what I did with the rest of the sample. The 100% natural fuel (with very limited ingredients - ALL OF WHICH I CAN PRONOUNCE AND HAVE HEARD OF BEFORE) kept me full and energized.

Something SUPER sweet that I learned about PocketFuel Naturals (I actually found out about it through Evelin's review of their product here) is that their mid-size pouch (1.8 ounces) is actually a refillable container! How awesome is that?! It often seems as though fuel (most of which are in sample size or one time use wrappers) come in packaging that is discarded after use. I LOVE that PocketFuel Naturals has made their containers reusable! Reduce, Reuse, Refuel (clever, huh?!). Two thumbs up from me on that!!


AND GUESS WHAT! I just won the giveaway that I referenced above from Evelin's blog!! I AM ONE LUCKY DUCK!! So now I will be able to try even more of their flavors!! 

An afternoon snack

As always, if YOU would like to try RunnerBox and have the opportunity to try out some of these AWESOME samples AND THEN SOME, make sure to use my ambassador code to get 10% off your order!

Walt Wednesday

Walt normally NEVER gets people food. I say normally because sometimes he is too quick and will grab something that has fallen onto the floor before someone can grab it from him (he is a speed demon, let me tell you!).

Although he doesn't get much people food, he was eyeing me while I was eating an apple earlier this week and I figured I would let him lick at what was left once I had finished.

He liked him some organic Fuji Apples ;) But really... who doesn't?!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I sat in on a #RunChat Twitter Chat this past week. It was mostly about Racecations (aka Vacations where you are traveling for a Race), but one of the questions really got me thinking. The question was "Every race expo swag bag should include _______." My answer - chapstick and sunscreen (probably a little bias because I run most of my races in SUNNY San Diego).

Some of the other great answers (at least I thought so) were - a map of the race (including port-o-potty stops), "throw away" gloves (for races that start off a little chilly) that would be donated afterwards, discounts for future races (either for the same race the following year or for races put on by the same company), LESS PAPER (all of the fliers with "discount codes" should be made into a VIRTUAL goodie bag that you can access online and SAVE THE TREES), shoe light/ reflector (runner's safety is IMPORTANT - make sure to be seen), a list of things to do before leaving the area (great for runners traveling to the race), reusable water bottles, and the list went on and on.

Well, it got me thinking that I have received TONS of samples from Expos, Race Goodie Bags, etc and I have them just sitting on a desk. Either I haven't gotten around to trying them out or haven't found the need for them (for example, I have received some AWESOME samples for things that prevent blisters, but I don't have an issue with blisters, so the samples are just sitting there, not being used).

I went through everything yesterday and saw I had enough to fill TWO small boxes. I even split everything up evenly with all of the duplicates I had, so the two boxes are almost identical.

Some of the items included are: Body Glide, a Clif Bar, Smarty Pants Gummy Vitamins, Gu, Udderly Smooth Lotion, etc.


I figured I would rather they go to someone who will use them than to continue sitting on my desk. My loss is your gain! Make sure to enter below for your chance to win!! Two winners will be selected ;) And you can even increase your odds by entering daily on some of the options!!

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Can you believe it?!

Can you believe it?! The Dumbo Double Dare sold out within 43 minutes of being open for general registration! THAT IS PURE INSANITY (especially with the increase in price from last year)! (And as I was writing this post the 10K sold out as well, within an HOUR of opening)

My bling from last year's Dumbo Double Dare

What is the Dumbo Double Dare you may ask. It is a runDisney challenge during the Disneyland Half Weekend. You run the Disneyland 10K on Saturday, followed by the Disneyland Half Marathon on Sunday. 19.3 miles over two days.

I did it last year (the inaugural year) and SIGNED UP AGAIN THIS YEAR! Thankfully Ryan and I are Disneyland Annual Passholders, so we were able to sign up last week to beat the rush. (He will be doing the Disneyland 10K this year, opting out of the half with me).

Last year's half marathon recap - Ryan's FIRST Half Marathon (and a one year anniversary from my first half!)


Last year's 10K recap - SUPER Fun Character Run (had never really stopped for characters during a runDisney race before)

Off with WHO'S head?! 
Will I be seeing you at any of the races during the Disneyland Half Weekend?! 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Dating ABCs: N

Another week, another date! This past week was N. We couldn't come up with an activity that started with the letter N, but didn't have an issue thinking of a restaurant to go to that started with N.


If you have never been there - you are really missing out!!


Yes, we go there occasionally (the closest one is probably 30-45 minutes away, depending on traffic, so it isn't necessarily a regular spot of ours, but man, every time we go we spend the whole meal saying things like "Can you believe this is vegan?" or "Yummmmmmmmm". I mean HONESTLY - it is DELICIOUS!), but it was still special for a date day.

Everyone is super friendly there. When we were ordering our food, we were chatting with one of the employees about our weekends (he was house-sitting for a friend with a lot of pets, so wouldn't be able to enjoy the BEAUTIFUL weather as much as he would like, but was still planning on having a lovely time). When he was printing out our receipt he said, "Whoa. I've never seen this before." We asked what he was talking about. He said, "Check out the receipt! It says that you guys are going to be featured on the Native Foods blog! HOW COOL?!" **We have no idea what it is about - maybe just the food we ordered, who knows. But don't you worry your pretty little head, I'll be sure to link the post whenever we see it go live ;)**

We had a great lunch - amazing food and amazing company (one another of course ;) ). <3 <3 <3

We even had the gentleman than brought over our food take a quick picture for us.

Just in case you have missed some of the recent Dating ABC Posts, make sure to check them out:

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Workout Recap - Week 4

Sunday, January 19th – Volunteered at Carlsbad Marathon for 5 hours

Monday, January 20th – 4 mile run, Foam Rolled & Stretched 

Tuesday, January 21st –  Strength Training (abs, back, arms and legs), Foam Rolled & Stretched

Wednesday, January 22nd – 7 mile run, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Thursday, January 23rd – 19.75 mile bike ride

Friday, January 24th – 6 mile run, Ice Skating for 2 hours, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Saturday, January 25th – Rest day

This past week was my first week without a gym (my first full week being "retired"). As I mentioned, I left my job that I was at for over five years. With that job, one of the perks we had was that we could use the hotel gym (since we rented office space through the hotel). 

I have to say, I think my body handled the more frequent running great. Obviously I am not planning on running 10 miles a day in place of going to the gym, so I think the variation of distance and pace will be totally fine. I also need to be sure to stay on top of my stretching and foam rolling, as to not let my IT Band get angry with me again. 

I LOVE where we live and that I can run at the beach throughout the year! We are BEYOND BLESSED and am STOKED to be able to take advantage of our surroundings more and more.

How were your workouts this past week?