Everyone Has a Story – Peter Chuchro

A few weeks ago I had the chance to meet Peter Chuchro at the starting line of the Disney World marathon.  Like Kimberly Markey Torres and Linda Leonard Ambard, Peter was being profiled for the #whyirundisney program.

Peter is a 33 year old who had a stroke when he was 32 years old.  Now, the father of a young baby and husband; he chose running a marathon as a goal after his sudden change in health.

Watch the video about his story!  The human spirit is amazing!  “If you can dream it, you can do it” Walt Disney.



Swirlgear Ambassadors Needed

SWI_BrandAmbassadorButtonI am a Swirlgear Brand Ambassador.  I have been once since July 2013.

The company is closing their Ambassador program applications on February 7.  So I thought it would be best for me to share this news with all of my running friends in case you want to contact them to become an ambassador.

swirljacketAs an ambassador, you can purchase their gear at a special price.  Then you receive a special code that you give to friends when they want to purchase gear so they, too can take advantage of special offers.

Learn more about Swirlgear and their amazing products.  Their new line will be coming out very soon, and with the help of their brand ambassadors, they can spread the word through social media.

To apply to become an ambassador, visit their website and complete the application form. Remember to do it before February 7!

I have a secret problem

I am sure I am not the only one who has this problem. But I need help. I tried to get help on my own but it may be time for a professional.

This is my running gear.  See that yellow basket?  That’s my most used stuff to grab on the go.  The 3 drawers houses my clothing broken down into groups, long sleeves and pants, capri pants, shorts, skirts and short sleeve shirts.  Never mind all the Disney race shirts I get from races.  Those are integrated into my everyday wardrobe because I have been wearing them more often (I am proud of the accomplishments!)

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Do you have the same problems? What do you do to get your stuff organized?

Do you have any advice on how to organize this mess?

Everyone has a story – Alison’s story

alisonandkimOn Sunday, January 12, four of us ran together at the WDW Marathon weekend to support our friend Kimberly Markey Torres.  Alison Jackeman Nicklas is one of Kim’s close friends.  This is her story…

    “In 2010 I made a decision to run my first Marathon after having lost 50 pounds. I knew the only way I could do it was by joining some type of running training program and I found out the the Hartford Marathon Foundation had a terrific program. They meet up on Saturday mornings at 6:30 in the Summer and that June they made their first run a short “9 miles.”
    When I arrived I was pretty nervous. So many runners that looked to be experts and here I was, having run as little as possible (although I had already completed 4 half marathons (without training for any!) As I was waiting for the training to begin, I looked over and saw this girl in a Goofy Challenge T-Shirt. It was from that very January and it was the COLDEST WDW Marathon Weekend – and I WAS THERE TOO! I didn’t run the Goofy, but my cousin did and I was so impressed to see that this young girl had done the same.
    I decided to strike up a conversation and we chatted about that crazy January weekend that none of us will ever forget. As the weeks went on, we became more than just training buddies – we became friends. We finished the summer program, connected with another runner (Janice Small) and made a pact that we would go for Goofy together in 2011. It was a crazy thought, but I thought that if Kim could do it, so could i! We have not missed a WDW weekend together since. In fact, we have also done the Disneyland Half together!
    In addition to training and running together, after our first summer running together as trainees, Kim and I became coaches for the Hartford Marathon Foundation and have supported more than 40 people through their very first marathon or their first “coached” training group. Kim and I participated in the RRCA Coaching class together and she has become family to me. She is not only fighting her own fight with breast cancer, she is also supporting my niece, diagnosed the same week, through the same fight. I am looking forward to many more years of training runs and races with her.”

I met Alison for the first time when I met Kim for the first time at the Cheshire Half marathon in April, 2013.  She is just as sweet as Kim.  We saw each other again for the #whyIRunDisney filming in December and we reconnected again in Disney and ran the 26.2 miles together.  She was the leader of the pack.

alisonDuring the race after the Expedition Everest roller coaster ride (which as you can tell here, she really loved!), her toe started to swell up.  As we entered ESPN she was visibly limping so we had to encourage her to slow down and do something about her foot.  Finally at a bathroom break she was able to elevate her foot for a while and it helped reduce the swelling along with drinking some more water.  But she never complained!  She kept leading the pack through the race course to get us to the finish line!  Yet another Dopey finisher.  I admire all you Dopey racers!  I am making a serious decision to decide to do the Dopey race next year.

I am looking forward to running more races with you Alison!  Hoping to run another 26.2 with you at the Providence Marathon on May 4th!

I met Chris and Heidi Powell!

During the marathon weekend, Saturday was a day without a race for me so we made it a Magic Kingdom day.  On my first night in Florida I saw on Facebook that Chris Powell posted a photo of the fireworks in Disney World.   I realized he must be down for one of his client’s challenges.

I mentioned it to my husband while we were walking at the park and not more than 10 minutes later he spotted him at the Dumbo ride with his wife Heidi!  Heidi and Chris got on the ride so I asked their nanny if they would mind me asking them for a picture.  They were soooooo friendly and completely cool, normal people.  I talked to Heidi more than Chris because I read her blog and I really loved her posting about being Wonder Woman after having a baby and I wanted her to know that I really enjoyed it.  I was also a little too nervous to talk to Chris!  He was standing right next to me!

thepowellsI had such a great weekend for the marathon and the races, but it was even so cool to meet the fitness celebrities during that weekend.  Ali Vincent was at the race and I met her on the starting line of the full marathon, too!  She is the first female winner of The Biggest Loser.  She has a great show called Live Big with Ali Vincent which has great real world topics on how to eat and live healthy and she gets real this past weekend when she steps on the scale for the first time in years and learns what she now weighs.


At these races it is great to meet other runners.  It is also great to meet people who motivate others like the trainers for the shows of Biggest Loser and Extreme Weight Loss. They work just as hard as the contestants and form lasting bonds and friendships with them.  It is evident in the way you see them on their shows and also how they are with their fans.

Keep up the great work Heidi and Chris!  Your passion for your work shines through in your every day lives!

One Word Resolution…

I love to listen to pod casts when I run.  This weekend  I needed to be out on my walk/run because I needed my peaceful time to myself. It was a grey, cold, windy morning.  Normally, people would prefer to be cuddled up on the couch with their coffee in a warm home.  Normal people do.  I wanted to get outside.  The temp was 25 degrees, a heat wave compared to the 10-15 degree temps we have been dealing with this week.

I started my walk with a mile or just walking to warm up my body and my legs.  They are still recovering from marathon weekend.  I was listening to the Two Gomers Run For their lives podcast season 6 episode 8 (link to podcast). They have been a favorite of mine and they are now working on a goal to do a full triathlon.  They are just 2 dads, normal guys, who are working towards goals of living a healthier life and becoming more active.  They have gone from running their first half, to their first full, to a sub 5 hour marathon, and now they are venturing into the triathlon world.  They are funny.  I was enjoying my time alone, laughing with (and at) the Gomers and learning as I go.

Every year for New Years, they talk about a one word resolution.  I typically don’t play along with this, but a word came to me that I thought was appropriate for what I have been going through lately.  So I am going to apply it to my year this year.  The word is GROW.  I am going to work on growing my running skills, my blog, my friendships, my work, my web design, and my creativity.

It was a rewarding, healing walk/run and I am looking forward to more growing time with myself to spark more creativity and new ideas!

Some of my other favorite pod casts are:

Another Mother Runner
Mickey Miles Podcast
Laugh or Go Crazy
The DIS Unplugged
Mouse Chat
WDW Today

What are your favorite pod casts?  Do you have a one word resolution for 2014?

#DisneySide @ Home Celebration – I am having a party!

Show Your Disney Side

I was selected to host a #DisneySide @ Home Celebration.  What is it?  It is a party you host at your house to show off your Disney side (like I really need to do that with a party?!).

I plan on having a candy bar and ice cream sundae bar, Dole Whip, and some healthy choices of food as well!  I sure do wish I could make the Magic Kingdom popcorn here. That’s one of our favorites!  There will be games, crafts and time to share our favorite Disney stories! Everyone will go home with a goodie bag, too!  Let me know if you would like to come on the evening of February 17.

Stay tuned more details to come in the upcoming weeks!  Subscribe to my blog for details!


I received free products in order to host the Disney Side @Home Celebration. The opinions expressed here are my own.