2014 Marathon Training… in the thick of it

I didn’t realize I was already in the high mileage portion of my marathon training when I finished the Tower of Terror 10 miler race on October 5th.  But I was actually behind in my training.  When I returned home I had to turn my focus on to the marathon training plan.  According to the Galloway plan, I needed to do a 17 mile run on October 19th.    I haven’t gone more than 10 miles in the past month and the last time I did 13 miles was Labor Day weekend.  I knew I had to step it up; but I also had to do it in a way where I wouldn’t re-injure myself.  So my plan was to run up to Kevin’s work and back.  It was a 7 mile route each way.  Then on my return trip home if I was feeling good I can add miles close to home or just do those additional miles as a walk instead of a run.

vineyard2I got Kevin on the bus, brought Adrienne to school, came home, had some apple sauce and then hit the road. It was a beautiful day that day.  I went up Cooke Road towards the vineyards and then to the reservoirs and through the back roads of Wallingford towards Meriden.  The roads were pretty flat after I go to the lakes.  I was really enjoying my route.  My pace was good and my legs were feeling like new again.

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I had my ipod loaded up with my favorite podcasts, my old nathan fuel belt with 10 oz of water and 10 oz of Gatorade and 2 Gus.  I was on my way to a successful run.  I left my house around 9:30 and expected to be at Kevin’s work between 10:45 and 11:00.  I was close to my estimate and arrived at 11:00.  I took a short break, refilled my water bottles and had a Gu.  I visited with Kevin for a few minutes and knew I had to get back on the road for the remainder of the trip home which would take the same amount of time.  I knew that I needed to get back home in time to shower and have lunch and get ready to pick up Adrienne from school.  It took me about 90 minutes to run to Kevin’s work so it would take that much time or more to run back home if I wanted to add additional miles.

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On the run towards Kevin’s work I had a little hidden Minnie surprise me on the side of the road.  That was the little bit of Disney magic to help me feel successful with this run and to know I was working towards my end goal, the Walt Disney World marathon training.

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The return trip home was just as nice as the first half of my route.  I ran past the lakes and back up Northford Road towards our house.  I took an additional detour which I knew would give me a total of 15 miles.  I decided that instead of increasing my longest run by 7 miles, an additional 5 to total 15 would be a good compromise.  Then on my 20 mile run I can increase by another 5 miles pretty safely.  The last part of my run gave me a smile when I ran past these pumpkin people.

I am looking forward to another long run on November 8th and hope it is as successful as this one.  I must admit that my marathon training seems to be going much easier than my Dumbo Double Dare training did and I don’t understand quite why.  I am still training for a 10K and this time a full instead of a half marathon.  My thoughts are that it is not the hot summer months that I am training in, I am no longer injured and going to physical therapy, and there are longer spans between long runs to allow for recovery.  I was afraid for a while because I know what is involved in marathon training and wasn’t sure I wanted to commit to those long miles again.  I was nervous because I had just come off of an injury with 2 months worth of physical therapy.  But thankfully that therapy was successful and has also taught me what to do to help remain healthy.

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How are you all doing with your WDW marathon training?  Are you ahead of schedule, on schedule or behind schedule?

Tower of Terror 10-miler Race Review

I did it!  I finished my first Tower of Terror 10-miler and I LOVED it!  It was my first night race and it was my first time running that race.  I definitely will do it again.  The distance was perfect.  I enjoyed running at night despite my apprehension during the day that I wouldn’t have the energy to make it through the race so late at night.  I figured that once I started running my adrenaline would kick in and I would be fine.  The hardest part was sitting around prior to the race waiting to move to the corrals and then in the corral waiting to walk to the start line.

The morning of the race, I woke up when Kim got up for the 5K.  I had a splitting headache so I took some tylenol and somehow managed

 to fall back asleep until 9:00.  I jumped out of bed unaware of what time it is, got in the shower and Kim came back from the 5K.  We

1005131116got ready and then drove over to the Floridian for breakfast at the Floridian Cafe.  That is a favorite place of mine!  Once we were there and stepped

foot into the hotel memories of my wedding day came flooding to me as I could smell the special smell of the Floridian (more on my Disney wedding coming up in a future posting).

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We took a picture with Richard the greeter there.  Love him!  We had a great breakfast of pancakes to load up for the day and have a big breakfast with plans for a later lunch to prepare for the race.  We had a nice time eating breakfast and talking together.

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After breakfast I dropped Kim off at Epcot and ventured over to my hotel to see if I could check in.  It was noon, but my room was ready so I checked in, got my things laid out for the race and checked my GPS to figure out where I was in relation to Amanda and Sarah.  I hopped in the car and went over to Amanda and Sarah’s place to pick up my bib.  They had a great hotel.  They were staying at the Nickelodeon World Suites.  Those rooms were awesome!  They had a three bedroom, three bath suite with a full kitchen, dining room and screened in porch.  I believe the average price per night there is $175.  A great deal for a group of people to share a place with!  And it is only 10 minutes away from Downtown Disney tops!

After visiting with Sarah and Amanda for a while, I drove back to my area, grabbed a turkey sub from Subway, gassed up the car and bought PowerAde and water for the rest of the weekend.  I went to my room, called home, ate my sandwich and tried to nap.  No such luck but I did rest off of my feet for a few hours.  Then I realized it was time to get dressed and ready to meet Kim at her hotel!  I jumped into the car, and hit traffic at Downtown Disney, so I turned around and headed towards Saratoga Springs via the back roads.  I am getting more comfortable finding my way around Disney on my own now.  It is much better marked out than Disney Land is.  I got to her hotel and we hopped on the bus just as it was about to leave.  We got to Hollywood studios, took pictures of each other and others in costume and hung out to wait for the #teamRunDisney peeps to meet up.  Come to find out we were split into two groups.  We finally all came together and took a great group 

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The announcers started to get the crowd excited, and then the first group was off!  They released each corral with about 2 minutes between each one.  It moved along fast and before I knew it, we were starting our run.  The first part was so cool with the laser light ceiling shining above us with the Twilight Zone music and fog. Kim and I intended on taking advantage of the character stops so that this run would be mostly about FUN, rather than racing, but once we stood in line for Jafar for 5 minutes to have him “take a break” when it was our turn, we bagged that idea and kept running.  I was a bit frustrated by that.After our pictures we went to our Corral.  I tried to get into the same Corral as Kim, but Disney was policing it very tightly.  So Kim went with me to Corral F.  That was a bummer; but not a big deal.  As we waited in the Corral I was starting to feel that sleepy feeling I get at that time of night.  I wasn’t moving around much and it was 9:30.  Luckily, I didn’t sit there for long, and we started to walk to the starting line.

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We continued on running, with a 2 minute/30 second interval.   My legs were feeling great. All the work in physical therapy was finally paying off.  I was running pain free.  We continued through the miles towards the Animal Kingdom and near the 5K mark.  We snapped photos of the mile markers and sites along with way without posing for the photos. It was late and we had early flights, so our mission now was to finish the race at an earlier hour.

I was really enjoying the race.  Even though it was very humid and warm, my body seems to be ok with that when attending the runDisney races with extreme weather conditions.  It was a lot of fun running at night, the entertainment on the course was great and there were plenty of water stations to keep us hydrated with the excessive heat and humidity. Towards the end of the race, Kim was overheating so I told her to take her wig off and there was immediate relief for her.  We walked for about 1/2 mile towards the finish line so that she could cool down and settle her stomach.  As we approached the finish line, Kim put her wig back on and we ran towards the finish line for photos.

I LOVED this race!  I enjoyed the night race, the theme, the excitement and all the run that comes with a runDisney night race! I am planning on doing this race again next year for sure!

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It’s not the Destination, it’s the Journey – Tower of Terror Part 1

Prior to the race, during the weekend I had an awesome time with Kimberly Markey.  Friday morning my flight was at 8:25 a.m. My husband sent me a text from work at 6:15 that said that there was an accident on the highway, lanes were closed.  I checked the news and freaked out a bit.  When my dad came he checked his phone and recommended I go up through Durham and hop on Rte 9.  That was a success.  I had some scary minutes there, but once I hit Hartford at it was 7:00 I was happy.  I knew I’d be in the shuttle by 7:30 which was my original plan.  Had I gone the normal route, there’s no way I would have made my flight. I met Kimberly Markey at the airport and we boarded the plane shortly after I arrived.  The flight down was easy and fast.  We chatted the whole time.

My plan was to arrive in Orlando, pick up a car, go to the Expo with Kim and head over to Merritt Island to visit my friend Shannon and spend the night there.  When we arrived in Orlando,  Shannon had sent me a text that her son was puking all over the place, so I decided to make other plans for that night.  I was looking forward to seeing her and spending the day and night with her!  Kim offered her room to me so I took her up on it.  Thankfully I am good with going with the flow.

1004131235We picked up the car, drove over to ESPN WWS and got a great parking spot. We went to the merchandise area, found what we wanted to purchase and checked out. The line was long, but it moved very quickly. From car to merchandise and checkout and over to packet pick up was 30 minutes. Then we went to packet pick up which also moved very quickly. After getting the race materials we did some shopping around the expo. There were good vendors there that we were interested in.  We got the chance to say hi to Carissa Bealert!

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After the expo we checked in at the hotel, grabbed a light snack in the food court and drove over to the Polynesian to go to the meetup with Linda Bachand from the Endurance Sports group and had dinner at Kona. The meetup was a lot of fun and the dinner at Kona was delicious!  I got the sushi and salad and Kim got the lamb and salad.

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Next we hopped on the monorail and went to the Magic Kingdom for the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. I LOVE this party!  My favorite part was the Dance Party in Tomorrowland. We got onto space mountain with no wait and also did some trick or treating. Then we hopped on the barnstormer, with no wait, the Little Mermaid and Kim’s favorite was getting our picture taken with the 7 dwarfs!

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I never knew that the pumpkins along Main Street were carved in the theme of the store or location they represent.  For instance the ice cream shop, or Casey’s Corner!  That is just like Disney to do something so cool!
DSCN0403DSCN0404DSCN0405We sat and watched some of the parade, found a good spot afterwards to watch the wishes show and made our way up main street so that would could be near the front for a quick exit after the fireworks. The day was catching up to us and we were getting tired so we left before the finale of the fireworks. We were back to our room by 11 and hit the sack.

Kim had to get up early for the 5K Saturday.

The Tower of Terror 10 miler race was FANTASTIC!  With each Disney race that I run I am loving each one more and more.  They all have their own theme and uniqueness to them.  There are many first that you can do in Disney and I will be writing about those first in upcoming blog posts.  It was my first Tower of Terror race, and it was my first night race.  I had a very successful run and there were many factors that led to my success.  I listened to the Mickey Miles podcasts in the weeks prior to the race and they had tips and recommendations from experts like Jeff Galloway about how to prepare for a night race.  I believe I was successful because of the following:

  1. I had a great breakfast.
  2. I rested for the afternoon and stayed off my feet after 4:00
  3. I had a light lunch around 3:30 which was a turkey sandwich from Subway with some baked chips
  4. I hydrated myself a lot with Powerade and water during the day
  5. While waiting for the line up to the corral I had an applesauce
  6. Just before our corral was let out I had a Gu
  7. During the run I took Powerade at most of the water stops instead of water

Stay tuned for part two the actual Tower of Terror 10-miler race!