Our Race Scrapbook 2014

Today's Tuesday on the Run is about taking a look back at 2014. We thought this would be a perfect time to share our race scrapbook. Normally we print these out on a 4x6 photo card and slip them right into our photo album. These aren't as creative as they have been in the past but since 2014 is almost over I wanted to make sure I got them done as quickly as possible. Since I've been having computer problems lately, I hadn't been able to print them out yet but for now we will just enjoy them here.

The Disney Scavenger Hunt

Happy Monday Folks! We skipped doing the "Peek in Our Week" yesterday because we were still visiting with friends & family and celebrating the season!  However, we thought we would share one of the fun things that happened on Christmas.  After we did our gift exchange with our family on Christmas morning, our parents had one last gift for my sister and I. They took us upstairs to one of the spare bedrooms and when we opened the door we saw my parents had set up a Disney Scavenger hunt for us.

Ever since my sister and I announced that we would be running the Disney Marathon ( and Goofy Challenge), our dad had secretly been buying us Disney merchandise!  The spare room was full of Disney merchandise and attached to the back of each item was a Disney gift card with one of our names on it. We had to guess which item we thought belonged to each one of us. That part was pretty fun.  We wish we would have taken a picture of the room before we started the hunt, but we didn't.
Yea, maybe this little activity seemed like it was suited more for little kids, but whether you are age 5 or 35, it was still fun for Disney lovers such as ourselves!

 Since we will be visiting Disney at least three times in 2015 these gift cards will definitely come in handy.  Not only do we have enough "Disney Cash" but our parent's also got us started on our park souvenirs. I can now say I have my first official Disneyland souvenir too! 

A Big Thanks to our parents for being so creative!

Have you ever made a "Scavenger Hunt" gift for anyone?

Dogs of Christmas

It's no secret that we are crazy about our dogs! We can't help it but these yellow bundles of fur are just too darn cute! For today's Friday 5 we wanted to share some of our favorite holiday pictures of our Baylee and Belle. If you follow us on social media you may have seen one or two of these.

This little elf wanted to go for a christmas run (She didn't, but Belle did...lol)

Anyone for a motorcycle ride? 

Is the doctor in?

It's too early. We need coffee!
Baylee was such a good girl and wore her christmas hat the entire time we traveled! 

Hope you all had a fantastic holiday.

Don't forget to link up your 5 with the Friday 5.
( www.eatprayrundc.com) 

Meet your friendly Fairytales and Fitness Runners Part 2

 Merry Christmas Eve folks! 

We thought we would have a little fun today. A while back our blog was nominated for one of those Leibster awards and we had to answer a few questions about ourselves. If you missed that post, you can read it HERE.  Well just recently a few blogging friends ( Karen from Just me and my running shoes and Kim from Black dog runs Disney) tagged us in another opportunity to answer some questions about ourselves.  We were suppose to give 4 answers to each question they asked. Since there are two of us answering we decided to keep it short and each of us give 2 answers.

1. Other names that people have called us-
1. Lace ( guess people are too lazy to say the cy at the end.)
2. Lacers  (back to the AOL days.)
3. Panda ( I guess because it rhymes with Meranda)
4. Moonbeam  ( an old college name, my BFF still uses it though)

2. Jobs that we've had-
1. Gate Agent -L
2. Dietary dept at retirement home -L
3. Teacher -M
4. Visual designer for a department store -M

3. Movies we like-
1.Tommy Boy -L
2. Wedding Singer-L
3. Sweet Home Alabama -M
4. RV -M

4. Our Favorite Books -
1. Run, Dean Karnazes -L
2. Believe It, Be It-Ali Vincent -L
3. Family Album by Danielle Steel ( pretty much anything by Danielle Steel) -M
4. Can you keep a secret by Sophie Kinsella ( I love this book but it is even better if you listen to it on audiobook. You will seriously be laughing out loud)-M

5. Places we've lived-
1. Washington D C -L
2. Harrisburg PA -L
3. Dumas, TX -M
4. Bloomsburg, PA -M

6. Places we've been
1. Paris-L
2. Jamaica-L
3. Ireland-M
4. London-M 

7. Things we don't eat-
  1.Tuna noodle casserole -L
  2. Ground beef -L
  3. Any meats that are not USDA approved (deer meat, wild game, fish, pretty much anything that anyone hunted or fished for.  Honestly there are only a few meats I will eat) -M
4. Raw onions -M

8.  Our favorite food-
  1. Pizza  -L
  3. Pasta -M
  4. My mom's Chicken Corn soup -M
9. Our favorite tv show
 1.Sex and the City-L
 2.Nashville -L
 3. Dallas-M
 4. Big Bang Theory -M

10. What we are looking forward to in 2015- 
1.Completing the Goofy challenge with my sister. -L 
2. Earning my five year pin with my company. It has a ruby in the middle of it. -L
3. Running my first marathon (and visiting Disneyland in CA) -M
4. Painting my house -M

11. Things we are always saying-
1.Good morning welcome aboard. -L
2.Going for a run. -L
3. Baylee Giiiirrrlllll -M
4. You have got to be kidding me! -M

12. Tagging-  In the spirit of the holidays, if you are reading this, consider yourself tagged. Answer one or all of these questions in your comment! 

Merry Christmas friends!    M and L

Why I wasn't always a happy runner in 2014

In 2014 my sister has ran 4 full marathons, 3 halves, 1 10K, 2 5Ks and a mile. I on the other hand ran 3 half marathons, 1 ten miler, 1 11K, 1 10K, 3 5Ks, and a mile. In total we have earned 26 medals. I know it doesn't sound like it adds up but some of those were challenge races. That was the good part of 2014.

If you have been a reader of our blog for a while now, you may know that I started the year of with a terrible case of ITBS. I struggled through Princess half marathon weekend in February. I went to a sports chiro and PT faithfully for 12 weeks in hopes that I would be up and running in time for my first marathon which would have been Big Sur in April. I did all the exercises and stretches yet Big Sur never happened for me. I was also diagnosed with Bursitis. After being prescribed a round of cortisone shots, I could feel some healing starting to take place.

At the end of the Summer I stupidity decided to run the VA beach half marathon. I worried I wasn't healed completely so decided to take it slow. Turns out I experienced very little pain during that race. At this point I knew I was well on my way to healing.

The Disney Tower of Terror 10 miler was the one race that I knew I really knew I wanted to "race" for time this year. Surprisingly I was able to run that race at my "true to me" race pace and had no pain! I truly thought I was back to my old running self.

Then came the half marathon in Las Vegas. The day before I was feeling some pinching in my knee, sort of like the ITBS was on its way back. I worried about how the race would go, but again, no pain and I was running that race at my "true to me" pace!

So now here I am preparing for the biggest race yet in just a few days ( the goofy challenge) and as of last Friday I couldn't even get more than 5 miles in. Remember yesterday I said I went out for 10 on Friday and only did 5? That's because it's back! That pinching knee pain and the lingering ITBS. To say I am sad and disappointed is an understatement. This is such a bad time for this to be happening. I just really wanted to get through the Marathon next month!

So in a nutshell, that is how my year of racing unfolded. I have ran longer distances this year, but I have also been injured a lot more too. This year was definitely a learning experiences and challenging to say the least.
Have you been battling an injury all year?

We are linking up with TOTR where the theme is the year in pictures. Unfortunately since my PC got wiped out I currently don't have race pictures to share but hope to recover them soon. To see more be sure to visit April at www.runthegreatwidesomewhere.com

A Peek In Our Week

I was watching one of the morning shows last week and it showed the top ten cities in the U.S that had the best Christmas light displays and Philadelphia was one of those place.  So one day last week we went into the city and to Franklin Square to see what it was all about.  Macy's had a light show going on to so we stopped there to watch it as well. -L
We had a great dinner afterwards and I had this pumpkin martini! -L
  Most of my runs this week were done on the Treadmill but I did managed to do one run outside because I received my new procompression tights and wanted to try them out! (Nothing like a new piece of gear to give you motivation). -L

I finally finished wrapping all my Christmas gifts and finally watched one of my favorite Christmas movie, Elf. -L
I did 13 miles on the bike this week and attempted to do 10 miles running but had a little incident that only allowed me to do 5 instead! -M
We are getting new furniture delivered for Christmas so I decided that I wanted to paint my walls. Remember those Pink-ish walls I talked about earlier? Well I finally decided it was time.   While we were painting in the living room, we left the paint can with the excess paint in it in the Kitchen ( didn't want to risk spilling it on the carpet).  When I walked out to the kitchen to get more paint, I saw our Weimaraner had knocked the paint can over ( the lid wasn't on tight), and it was COVERED in paint. He was literally sitting in a pool of paint. He knocked over an almost full can.  Because he had it all over his paws, we had to wrap him in a bed sheet and Scott carried him upstairs and we gave him a bath.  Thank goodness for my mom and our house guest that was here because while we were bathing the dog, they were able to clean up all the paint off our kitchen floor.  I really wish that I had taken a picture of him covered in paint sitting on the kitchen floor but I think we were just all in shock and had to formulate a plan of how to get him out of there with out him dragging paint throughout the house. Oh what a weekend!  -M

New Italian Restaurant opens at Disney


Great news for those who love Italian food but don't want to pay park admission to get into Epcot to go to the Italian Pavilion. Trattoria al Forno, is a new casual Italian restaurant at Disney’s BoardWalk Resort and it is now open for business!

 Here is the official word as given to me from Disney:

 From tempting regional specialties to crowd-pleasing classics, this new Walt Disney World® Resort restaurant offers diners an authentic taste of Italy.  
Showcasing traditional techniques, Trattoria al Forno celebrates the diversity of Italian cuisine with authentic ingredients and recipes hailing from all over “The Boot,” from Milan to Rome.  Menu items include house-made daily mozzarella atop Neapolitan-style pizzas, hand-rolled pastas, velvety risottos and seasonal seafood.

For a sweet end to the meal, you can enjoy signature-blend Italian coffee accompanied by Italian dessert classics, such as tiramisù, lemon panna cotta, gelato and more. 
The restaurant’s extensive wine list, which is 100 percent Italian, takes you on a journey through Italy’s 20 wine regions.

And, for breakfast, Trattoria al Forno offers up American favorites with classic Italian tastes, including scrambled eggs with tomato, basil and fresh mozzarella, or cured Italian meats with tomatoes, hard-boiled egg, and cheese with fonduta (a warm cheesy sauce for dipping bread).
Trattoria al Forno is open 7:30 a.m.- 11 a.m. for breakfast, 5-10 p.m. for dinner and accepts the Disney Dining Plan.

I'm thinking this might be a great place to stop during marathon weekend next month!

How to Host a Murder Mystery Party

Today's Friday Five is all about Holiday Traditions and one of the things we do every year around the holidays is host a Murder Mystery party ( this is something separate from the Murder Mystery weekends that we attend).  Lots of people do the typical Christmas party, so this kind of mixes things up a bit and we love a good themed party!

1.To make things simple, we purchase one of those boxed party kits. We have used several brands but our favorite is by BePuzzled Games.

2. This kits will give you everything you need to host a successful party. It will give you invitations to send out, a menu for meal planning, a script booklet for each suspect, an overall party guide, and an optional CD.

3. Our favorite part of the murder mystery is the dressing up!  On each invitation there is a list of characters. Each guest is assigned to portray a certain character and they are given background info on that character and costume suggestions. This is so fun and our guests really take the dressing up seriously. Over the years we've had a skier ( bringing real skis with him), a doctor, a show girl, a surfer, a redneck bride and an Elvis, just to name a few.

4. It's always fun to make the food for the party too. Each party has it's own theme and the menu that is suggested in the party planning kit reflects that theme. I don't remember for certain all of the themes we have done, but here are a few:  A ski lodge, A Vineyard, A Wedding, Mardi Gras, a Hawaiian Luau and an Italian Theme.

5. The party planning guide will also guide you on how to decorate and what props you should have. Even though we host this party during Christmas, the only real Christmassy theme we ever had was the one set at the ski lodge. That was fun because I could use all my snowmen and Christmas tree decorations I already had. One of the most fun themes we had was probably the Hawaiian Luau. It was so fun to decorate my house and wear fun sun dresses even though there was snow on the ground!

I'm sorry I don't have any pictures of our past Murder Mystery parties. I believe they all got lost when Best Buy wiped out my computer!

Do you host an annual party of some sort?


How Running Shoes are like Puppies

Remember earlier this week I told you that I did my very first 22 mile run? Well, while on that run I had a lot of time to think. One of the things I thought about was how yucky my running shoes were becoming as I slushed around in the snow and sometimes mud. I felt bad about how awful I had been treating my favorite shoes but then I remembered this: Running shoes are meant to be worn. They won’t do me any good if I keep them sitting in their box and am afraid to wear them in in- climate weather. I need to show them some love, I need to let them do their job, I need to show them the world (or at least my little part of it)!
This got me thinking that running shoes are a lot like puppies. It takes a certain amount of dedication to properly care for both.  Okay, you are probably thinking I am crazy right about now, but hear me out.

1.       Before you even select a pair of running shoes, you should have done some research and got a proper shoe fitting to help you find out what a good shoe would be for you. Same is true for picking out a puppy. You need to do research and find one that you are capable of properly taking care of and one that fits your life style.

2.       When you purchase your running shoes you are making a commitment to your running, your health, your training plan, etc. When you pick out a puppy you are hopefully making a commitment to properly care for the puppy.
3.       You have these perfect running shoes but they won’t do you any good looking pretty in the box. Take them out, go for a run, and get them dirty!  Same goes for your puppy. Those little balls of joy can be quite mischievous but you can’t keep them locked up in their crate or cage all day. They need to get out and play!
4.       You need to give them (both your running shoes and your puppy) a good life. Let them do the jobs they were meant to do.  I’ve used my running shoes hard this year, but I know they are happy for it (or they would be if they actually had feelings). Just this year my Altras have taken me on runs through Disney World, on the beach (literally) and on the boardwalk, through the Las Vegas Strip, and on the Appalachian Trail. My dog on the other hand has gone to the playground, runs on the trails, goes to the beach, plays with her other lab friends, and swims in our pool. I think she is just as happy!

5.       Just as you need to properly care for your puppy with Vet visits and as needed maintenance, the same is true for your running shoes. Check them often. Make sure everything is where it is supposed to be. Check your tread. Is it wearing low? Could it be time for a new pair?

Yes, I had a lot of time on my 22 mile run to think of this. Although it may be a little bit silly, you have to admit it is true.   -M
What do you compare your running shoes to? 

The OTHER Charcter meal at Disney

When you start making dining reservations for your Disney trip do you include any "Character dining experiences" on your itinerary? If so, where are your favorites? Do they include the Crystal Palace in MK? Cinderella's Castle? Have you been lucky enough to get in at Be Our Guest? We actually prefer character dining that is outside of the park. For resort dining, you probably are thinking of the big three along the monorail line: Chef Mickey's, O'hana, and 1900 Park Fare, and then over at the Beach Club you have Cape May.

One Character Dining experience that often gets overlooked is Garden Grove Café at the Swan Resort. The Swan and Dolphin resort is just a short walk from the Boardwalk and is definitely worth a visit to try out one of the many restaurants.

We went to the Garden Grove for a post race brunch during our last visit. Here are some highlights and things you should know:

* The Garden Grove is very easy to access from the boardwalk ( or Yacht or Beach Club). If
 you are coming from any of these resorts, you will enter the double doors in the back and Garden Grove will be to your right.

*No Reservations are needed for Garden Grove.

*The theme of Garden Grove is "Central Park". It is so cute with it's big trees and park lights.  It is covered in a big dome that allows for lots of natural light ( which you can tell from my picture). I believe I even saw a bird flying around up top.

*Character dining for breakfast is only available on Saturday and Sunday. We went on Saturday and surprisingly it wasn't packed.

* Two characters visited during our time there. They were Goofy and Pluto.

*Character dining is also available for week night dinners.

*GREAT selection of hot and cold foods.  Really, this was a fabulous buffet. I loved the smoothie selection and had one of each kind.

*This Character buffet was only $24 which is kind of a bargain when it comes to character meals. I will admit that you do only get to see two characters, but for the amount of food and the fun atmosphere, it was totally worth it.

Have you ever been to Garden Grove Café?  Have you been to any restaurants at the Swan or Dolphin?

Stride Box vs Runner Box and other subscriptions

If you have been a frequent follower on our blog you may have remembered us talking about the Stridebox which is a monthly subscription box that is all products for runners. At the time when I was receiving Stridebox, I had not heard of any other subscription like that. Since then, I have learned that there are many boxes out there that are similar.  One of them is the Runnerbox. In addition to Runnerbox, they also offer a Cyclebox and TriBox

Many of you may have heard about this box but since I had been getting the Stridebox I was anxious to compare the different between the two boxes. Unlike many subscription boxes, Runnerbox was offering a one time limited edition holiday gift box at a discounted rate with free shipping. I really liked that you could do a one time purchase and not have a monthly subscription that you had to remember to cancel. 

Though you received a few more items in the Runnerbox, their products were very similar to the Stridebox such as GU and a Honey Stinger. A few were different like sportswear detergent and Primal mud. 

I liked that the Stridebox came with a description of all the products in the box, and most came with a discount code to use if you wanted to buy more of a product that you may have liked. 

In the Runnerbox there were only two description cards. One was for the high performance laundry detergent with a 10% discount code and the other explained how Primal Sport Mud works(no discount code). Use Primal Sport Mud before or after training to help ease any soreness.  Put on affected area and cover with a towel and place heating pad on it for 15 minutes. Ever hear of it? I haven't tried it yet, but have heard it does work.
Contents of my last Runnerbox

So my final thoughts.
- Runnerbox and Stridebox both have similar products.
- Runerbox gives you more products to try in their box, therefore more variety.
-You do not have to do a monthly subscription if you want to purchase one as a gift.

-Not as many discount codes as Stridebox offers.
-More expensive monthly.
-Though some products are self explanatory, I like that Stridebox gave you a list and description of each product in the box and where to find it at if you want to order more. Runnerbox did not.
-Even with the discount I received, it was still more expensive than the Stridebox.

My opinions are based on several months of getting Stridebox and only one month of receiving Runnerbox.  -L

Have you ever tried Runnerbox? What are your thoughts? Do you subscribe to any other subscription box?

                                                             We are linking up with TOTR.

For all my friends who have to train in the winter

I knew I wanted to get a long run in sometime last week but I kind of kept coming up with excuses. My knees had started pinching again, it was cold outside, it had snowed, I needed to clean house, etc.  Well Friday I had planned to either go shopping or run. I was actually considering both but figured I should get a long run in since that would probably take me longer.

Yes, it was still cold out, but I bundled up in my fleece leggings, my long sleeve tech shirt from RnR Las Vegas and my Under Armour windbreaker over top, just in case it started to precipitate in anyway. I didn’t want to get caught being soaked like I did last Tuesday. Oh, and I should mention that I put that Marathon cream that my sister got at the Las Vegas expo on my knees before I went outside. Boy oh boy, that stuff certainly throws some heat on your legs. That was a good thing to put on before going out in the cold.

Okay, let’s get to the running part. The trail I run on is a mix of paved and unpaved roads.  It had snowed 2 days before and I wondered if any of the trail would be cleared or plowed. I started out on a paved part and it was not plowed but looked as if there was a path created for runners and bikers.  After I went a little ways I noticed that the cleared path was not a constant.   I did pass a runner coming in the opposite direction and that gave me hope that there were more cleared spots ahead.
This is what the majority of the trail looked like on my run on Friday.
 I found out that was not the case. I ran when I could and when the snow was too deep I took some walk breaks. By mile 6 the back of my knees started pinching. Apparently the marathon cream had worn off.

At about mile 8 I finally got to try my Salted Carmel GU that I have been carrying around with me on all my long runs but never used. It was amazing and tasted like real caramels. It didn’t taste like a GU at all. I never take a full GU at one time (I usually save some for later), but this time I squeezed till I got every last drop!  I then immediately felt as if I had to go to the bathroom. I knew there was a public park about 2 miles ahead and planned to make a pit stop there.  By the time I got to the restrooms, I decided I could wait a bit more and stop on the way back. Well by the time I ran back past the restroom, I didn’t feel the need to stop at all which was good. What was not good is that a mile after I already passed the restrooms, I felt the need to go. I knew there was a Sheetz a mile ahead so that was my only. Get to Sheetz!  I literally ran into Sheetz with my earbuds still in and my Under Armour face hood on (So glad it was not a black one or I probably would have scared some people).  I got to the restroom and I seriously had to wait in line. NO!

Okay, so I was feeling better after leaving Sheetz and ready to tackle the last 10 or so miles. At mile 15 I decided to eat my Ginger Snap Honey Stinger Waffle.  I was so disappointed when I pulled it out and it was frozen. It was seriously like eating peanut brittle. At this point I was tired of dodging the snow so I would just run through some of it. I actually noticed that running on the snow made the pinching pain in my knees feel a little better. At round mile 16 I noticed that I lost one of my new touch screen gloves (see I told you that would happen). It must have fallen out of my pocket when I pulled my waffle out. I turned around to see if I could see the bright pink glove lying in the snow anywhere but didn’t see it so I just kept running. I didn’t bother going back to look for it. For $3, I could buy another pair!
 At mile 17 this little guy ran with me for about 3 tenths of a mile. He had fast little legs and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t worried that he was going to bite me in the ankles. His brother, a Yellow Labrador, was a good dog and stayed in the yard!  

I started getting the “Low battery” message on my Garmin and worried that it was going to shut off before I completed my run so at this point I kept taking pictures of my Garmin at every mile, just in case.  When I hit the 20 mile mark, I decided to “Save” my run on the Garmin so I would at least have data for that far. I just ran 20 miles! I couldn’t believe it. My longest run up till now had only been 15. I felt like I had made a break through in my running!  After I saved my 20 mile run, I started the Garmin back up to see if it had enough battery to record the rest of my run. I got about one tenth of a mile in and the Garmin shut off just as I had predicted. I am so glad that I saved it at 20 miles because it was SO close to shutting off on me.  I was planning on doing 22 miles, but at this point it was getting dark so I decided to turn around and start walking back to my car. I figured I did 20 miles, I’m good.  I started walking for a few seconds and thought “What am I doing?” I came to do 22 miles. I’m gonna finish it!  I turned around and did the last mile up and then the other mile back to my car. 22 miles done!  Under normal circumstances I may not have done those last two miles but at this point I knew Scott was in the parking lot waiting for me so I felt comfortable knowing that he was near. He had stopped to meet me on his way home from work and I am so grateful for that. 

After my run I immediately called my sister to tell her how many miles I did! It actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I think maybe it was because I wasn’t running at a race pace. I was a little achy later that night but I soaked in a Epsom salt bath and surprisingly I felt okay the next day. I tried to follow the Galloway Goofy training plan as closely as I could but I admit I fell behind somewhere in November.  I’m gonna say that this will be my longest run before marathon day and I’m okay with that.   -M
How is your training doing? Do you remember the first time you ran your longest training run? What was it like?

A Peek in Our Week, Running of the Elves, new products, coupons and discounts

Welcome to another Peek in our Week!

I would say that this week was full of successful workouts for me. I either ran or rode bike and I remembered to get in some stretching too. Monday I rode 14 miles on the bike, Tuesday I ran 6 miles and then rode another 13 on the bike, Wednesday I rode 15 miles on the bike, Thursday I actually did housework ( and I did stretching), and Friday I did a VERY long run! -M

The weekend was very busy as well. Saturday I went to a "Grinch" event for work. Yes, the big green Grinch was there! I then got to cheer on some runners at our town's Running of the Elves 5K.

I was kind of disappointed that more runners did not dress festive for the race. I tried to get pictures of the ones who did.

5 Winter Activites Runners in Training Should Avoid

Hey Gang, Happy Friday!

Thank you all for the great support on yesterdays post. Its good to see that I am not the only one who loses things only 5 minutes after I put them down. Good news, my mom saved the day. Apparently she found my car key under the cushion of the dining room chair! I have no idea how it got there.

Anyway, lets get to the Friday 5. This week's theme is Winter Activities.  I don't know about you, but with 5 races coming up this winter, we are playing it safe. We are not really engaging in any "Winter" activities which is sad because we generally go ice skating with our family this time of year. I actually remember writing a post similar to this last year. I had wanted to go ice skating and thought it would be good cross training on a non run day, but was too worried that I would get hurt. Here I am a year later and I still haven't gone ice skating because I am training for yet another big race.

So if you are a runner and you have a race planned for this winter or early spring, please be cautious  doing these winter activities or just stay away from them until training is over!

1. Ice Skating: We are both pretty good ice skaters, but anything can happen.

2. Skiing: When I would ski, I would worry more about people running into me and knocking me over.

3. Snowboarding: I'm not sure I would be coordinated to do this anyway.

4. Shoveling Snow: Yes Shoveling can be dangerous. I know many people who have pulled a muscle or have suffered an injury from shoveling. If you are training for a race, don't risk it. Get your spouse, your child, or a neighbor kid to shovel for you.

5.  And #5 is to just be careful on the ice in general. Make sure you are putting salt in areas that need salted and use hand rails when you can. So many accidents happen when people slip on the ice.

Will you be engaging in any winter activities this season?

                      Don't forget about A Rose So Sweet Non Slip Headband GIVEAWAY

This Runner is Losing Her Mind

Welcome to another edition of Thursday Thoughts. Today it's the ramblings of a runner.

Since I had been having some knee pain since coming home from RnR Las Vegas, I decided that the whole month of December I would really concentrate on strength training and stretching.  Every day this week I have gone to my parent's house to ride their exercise bike (since I don't have one).

On Tuesday I ran 6 miles, in the rain I might add. Yea, that made me feel like one of those dedicated hard core runners. You know the ones that when people drive by they say "She must be crazy", haha. Anyway, while I was running I had my car key in the inside pocket of my jacket. I would say that pocket is pretty secure. And I have to mention that my car key is just a fob, not really a key. In facet I don't have to have the key out to unlock the car door or eve start the car. Oh how modern technology works.

Anyhow, after my 6 mile run, I ran back to the parking lot and left my soaking wet self in my car. My car key was still in my jacket pocket, all I had to do was just touch the door and it opened.  I sat in my car for a moment, checked my text messages, and then pushed the ignition button on my car ( key still in jacket pocket).  My car started and I drove all the way to my parents house.

I remember getting out of my car with my key in one hand and my phone in the other and actually using the key fob to lock  my car.  I walked in the front door of my parents house, took my wet coat off and started chatting with my dad. Before I even left the downstairs area, I noticed that I forgot my water bottle in my car.  As I looked for my key, so I could go back out to my car to get it, I couldn't find it.  I searched the house up and down and still no key.  I noticed that one of my gloves was also missing from my jacket pocket. When I walked out to my locked car, I saw my other glove sitting on the console. I assumed that my key must be in there too.  I was pretty sure I had the key in my hand when I left my car and I don't know how I would have locked it without my key.  But in any case, I got a ride back to my house to get the spare key.   Once I got back to my parent's house, I unlocked my car, and yet there was no key inside.  My dad is convinced that I lost the key while on my run. I keep telling him that  would be impossible because there would have been no way I would have been able to drive my car to his house if I didn't have the key inside my car somewhere.  I looked around his house again the next day and still couldn't find my key.   I am convinced that the key has got to be in my parent's house somewhere in plain sight, but where?  I hadn't even been in the house more then 10 minutes and I lose the key. Things just are not making sense and I am seriously thinking I am losing my mind!  

Please tell me I am not the only one who has ever lost something so quickly? 
This is just so bizaar!  -M

P.S We are starting our 12 days of Christmas today so be sure to check out our Facebook page for more Gift Ideas for Runners!

Stocking Stuffer Must haves and a GIVEAWAY

When I think of "stocking stuffers" I think of fun items that are small ( because of course you want them to fit inside the stocking).  I could think of a ton of little items to give a runner:Nutrition bars, running fuel, KT Tape, Body Glide, etc. I could go on and on but this post will consists of items to wear! I've come across a few new  "wearable" products this year and some of them I thought would be great for stocking stuffers.

1. The Keysocks are probably the most unique stocking stuffer on my list. I was so excited to write about these because I love them so much. Let me tell you a bit about them.  Since marathon training, the only dress shoes I have been wearing lately are ballet flats. Since the weather has been chilly, ballet flats ( without socks) is not very practical or warm.  Keysocks is a full length sock but the top of it is cut out ( kind of like a keyhole). This way it gives the appearance of no sock while your foot and calf stay warm. Genius!   The photo shows me wearing the magenta striped Keysocks ( and I thought it was fun how some of the Magenta peeked out around my shoe). In the pic below that I am wearing the nude color Keysocks and you can't even tell that I have them on. pic The owner of Keysocks is Shelby McKee, so the name Keysocks is fitting!

2. I've discovered A Rose So Sweet adjustable headbands this year too. I love no slip headbands and have been loyal to a certain brand over the years. Since I have discovered A Rose So Sweet, I will be adding these headbands to my collection. Liz, the owner of A Rose So Sweet puts an adjustable slide on her headbands, something that you can't find on other non-slip bands. I am loving the holiday patterns she currently has available and her prices can't be beat.  All the bands pictured above range from $7.50-8.50.  Don't you think the first one pictured above would be perfect for a Hot Chocolate race? If you think you would enjoy an adjustable headband from A Rose So Sweet, Be sure to enter the giveaway HERE.

3. The holidays are a perfect way to relax ( and recover). Why not give someone the perfect recovery gift of Pro-Compression. There is nothing like putting on a pair of calf sleeves ( for your poor, tired, over worked legs), sitting on your sofa watching your favorite show ( for us it would be Sex and the City), while sipping on your favorite beverage!   Pro-Compression is having a little fun for the holidays and wants us to show how we can make our sleeves festive!  What do you think of my design? I am now ready for a Jingle Jog if I should feel the need to run one this month!

If you would like to give the gift of recovery this season, please use the code PINK2 for 40% off your entire purchase at ProCompression.com

My infinity scarf from Scarves.net. I'm loving winter white these days.

4.  Whether or not you want to bundle up while on a run or you want to look fabulous on your rest days, the infinity scarf from Scarves.net  is the perfect piece to have.  I've discovered this site just this year and OMG! Styles galore and very reasonably priced! Infinity scarves seem to be all the rage lately and I can see why. Not only are they soft, warm, and stylish, they are super easy to wear because you don't have to worry about how to tie your scarf or loop it the right way. I loving my cozy scarf from Scarves.net  Use the Code HOLIDAY20 to get 20% off your next purchase at scarves.net

5. I finally found a pair of those gloves that have the touch screen finger tips.  They are just the cheapy knit gloves that I got at Wal-mart for around $3 but ya know what, they work perfect! They are warm, the touch screen tips work fabulously, and if I lose one or both ( because I know I probably will), they were only $3 and I can easily replace them. I certainly wouldn't mind having another pair of these in my stocking this season.

What will you be giving as a stocking stuffer? M

*I received the Keysocks, the Pro-Compression Sleeves, the infinity scarf, and the non-slip headband free of charge but any opinion I have expressed is my own.

A Unique Way to Save Race Bibs

I am always curious to see how people display their bibs and other running memorabilia.  We have shown in the past how we have both displayed our running medals and you can see them HERE and HERE ( We both have added a few medal displays since these photos where taken). However, we hadn't mentioned what we do with our bibs. At first, I hadn't saved my bibs with the intention of actually "saving" them to display them. I just kind of had them laying around. Once I started running bigger races I started saving them "on purpose".  I knew I wanted to do something with them but I didn't know what.

Earlier this year I won this BibFolio from Gone For A Run. This is a great way to keep all your bibs organized while keeping them from getting tattered and dog eared ( like they use to when I stored them else where).

Checking Out the Non-Conventional Running Shoes

Between my sister and I, we both have tried out quite a few pairs of running shoes over the past couple of years. One thing we have both learned is to never judge a pair of shoes on how they look. Some of the goofiest looking shoes have performed wonderfully while some of the prettiest shoes were only so-so.
I was given the opportunity to try out a pair of shoes called Airia. I have never heard of these shoes before so I decided to take the opportunity to see what they were all about.
When you first look at the shoes, your first thought would probably be they look a little odd. Surely not your typical running shoe (with the curved toe box). When I first put them on they felt almost like a track shoe that I wore in High School.  They were definitely light weight. 
They claim to help you run up to 7% faster.  Also they are hard to walk in since they are specifically for running. After trying them on you realize why. The soles of the shoes are not completely flat,  which makes them difficult to walk in.
Like any good training plan, you are suppose to work up your mileage. Since these are not your typical running shoe you are suppose to ease into your miles as well to see how your body responds to the shoe.

When I tried them on my first thought was that they may be a hair too big. Even though I only had a thumbs width between my toe and the end of the shoe. The top of the shoe was very roomy as well. Even if I went down a size that wouldn't change. I even looked up a Youtube video of someone testing the shoes out, and they even looked like the top of their shoe was big, so I assumed that's just how the shoe is made. 
The first time I took them out it took me a few minutes to get used to running in them. I could definitely feel the unevenness of the bottom of the shoes. It didn't feel uncomfortable, just different.  Shortly after I started I began to get use to the feeling and I didn't mind it. It almost felt like it gave me an extra push off with each step I took. I ran about a mile or so and I felt pretty good. I didn't even feel like they were too big (like I thought earlier) because my feet were not sliding at all. I could start feeling my calves getting tight a little and I told myself I better stop because even though I feel good now, it may catch up to me. I didn't want to bite off more than I can chew right away and be too sore to try them out again soon. 
The next day I decided to go out for about two miles and see how they felt. This time I felt my glutes getting tight a little bit.  Trying these shoes out almost feel like taking on a new fitness routine. The first couple of days you are sore from working muscles you are not used to working. But after awhile you get used to how they feel, and your muscles don't feel as sore.
After several short runs and getting familiar with the shoe I was excited to test them out for a 5k to see if they really were going to help me run faster.
I took the route I normally run when I do a 5k around my neighborhood. The run went well. I was trying to not focus on my GPS too much but rather run on feel. At the end of my run I looked at my watch, and I ended up running about a minute faster than I normally do. Could it be the shoes? Maybe. Could it be that I was just having an "On" day? Maybe. But either way I did it faster than normal and felt good during it.
So my final thought: 
These shoes are certainly something you have to get use to. Even after several runs with them I can still feel the muscles in my legs working. Would I wear these for a marathon? Probably not, but these would be perfect for shorter distances such as 5k and 10k. My conclusion is that they are more of a racing flat than a distance or trail shoe. I do have a 10k road race coming up in the near future that I may wear them for to see if they make a difference with my time. 

Have you ever tried the Airia shoes or a nonconventional running shoe? What did you think? ~L

( I was sent these Airia running shoes free of charge. All opinions are my own)

A Peek in our Week

 Welcome to another edition of a Peek in our Week.

I have only ran one time since Rock n roll Las Vegas. I set out to do 17 miles the Monday before Thanksgiving and sadly I only got 10 of them in. I was feeling tightness and pain in the back of my knees. Even though I really wanted to get the next 7 miles in, I decided that it wasn't worth pushing through and risking injury just so I could write a larger number on my training calendar. -M

I haven't ran since that run. I told myself I would focus a lot on stretching and strength training for a while. I did it for a few days but not as much as I should have.-M

Something troubling happened this past week. Because of this incident I am now a bit frightened to run on my own. I'm not really sure how I'm going to get in the rest of my long runs before the marathon. -M

On a positive note, I finally put my Christmas Tree up! Speaking of Christmas. We are going to be starting something fun this week so be sure to check us out on Instagram (@Fairytalesnfit) and Facebook so you can enjoy a bit of holiday cheer with us! ( believe me, you'll like it)-M

Earlier this week I was feeling a bit under the weather so I didn't run. When I was feeling better it rained here nonstop for two days.  Luckily I was able to get some treadmill workouts in. -L
One of the rainy days I lounged around watching Christmas movies all day while wrapping gifts. It was a very relaxing day. -L
 Saturday night I was invited to a Christmas party. It was so nice catching up with some girls I went to college with.  -L
The weather is suppose to be much better this coming week so we are hopeful that each of us gets some more miles in.  I can't believe we are almost a month away from the Goofy Challenge!
Don't forget to check out the holiday giveaway we have going on. You can see that HERE.
How have your runs been lately? Did you do anything exciting this past week?


The Best Home Made Runner Box

Because of the profession my sister is in, she has to do a lot of her eating "on the run" ( no pun intended), so she is always carrying snack bags with her.

Last Christmas I started to look into different types of snack boxes geared towards runners. I couldn't quite find one that I was 100% happy with and didn't want to get something in which I knew she would only enjoy 2 or 3 of the items in the box.

So with that, my own version of the Runner snack box was born.

Here's what I did:

1. Get a big box and wrap the box part and the lid part separately. I believe I used a copy paper box.

2. I use 6 extra large ziplock bags and several small ones. Putting the snacks in ziplock bags makes it easy to grab on the run.

3. I then filled the bags with a variety of running fuels and snacks that I knew she would enjoy.

4. In addition to the snacks, I put a small trinket in each bag. Some of the trinkets included a a chap stick, a race magnet ( actually there were several race magnets), a sweat band, and some other fun items.  Each week Lacey would take a new bag of snacks to work with  her and she told me it was like Christmas all over again each time she opened a new bag.

5. The last step of course was to put the bags inside the box and put the lid on.  I did happen to do a little more decorating to that box then what is seen in the picture.

You could of course theme your box if you wanted, but mine was just a mix of running fuel and fun snacks ( some healthy, some not).

As we get older, we tend to like more practical gifts. Running fuels and healthy snacks aren't always that cheap so I know she appreciates this.  I've made  my sister a variation of this snack box for the last couple of years and it seems to always be a Holiday Favorite and something I get asked to do again and again. 

I've also made Personal Care item gift boxes too.

Do you like practical gifts like consumables? ~M


Run Disney,May Events, and Star Wars meals

Hey gang, Happy Thursday! Thanks for checking in with us today. There seems to be a lot of buzz going on about what is going to be happening at Disney World this coming May.  If you haven't already heard, apparently May 2015 will be the last time the Expedition Everest race will be offered.   but that's not really new news since it was already announced!

May is also Star Wars time at Disney. The Star Wars Weekends will return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 15-June 14, 2015.

Here are some details about the events being offered

This year you can take the Star Wars Weekends experience to a whole new galaxy with out-of-this universe dining experiences daily from May 4-June 14, 2015, including Star Wars Dine-In Galactic Breakfast and Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine at Hollywood and Vine, including Fantasmic! Dining Package.

Star Wars Dine-In Galactic Breakfast
This cosmic breakfast at Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant features favorite Characters from a galaxy far, far away, including Darth Vader, Boba Fett, Greedo, Jawas and Stormtroopers.
This experience will take place daily May 4-June 14, 2015 8 a.m.-11 a.m. The price for the Star Wars Dine-In Galactic Breakfast is $49.99 per adult and $31.99 per child ages 3-9. Prices include tax, but not gratuity.

Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine at Hollywood and Vine, Including Fantasmic! Dining Package
This unique dining experience allows your Clients to celebrate the Star Wars saga with special décor, themed menu options and stirring music – followed by the evening’s first Fantasmic! show. This intergalactic feast includes appearances by favorite Disney pals dressed as popular Characters from the Star Wars universe, including Jedi Mickey, Princess Leia Minnie, Darth Vader Goofy, Storm Trooper Donald and Ewoks Chip ‘n’ Dale.

This experience will take place daily May 4-June 14, 2015 from 4:15 p.m.-8 p.m. The price for the Jedi Mickey’s Star Wars Dine at Hollywood and Vine, including Fantasmic! Dining Package is $57.99 per adult and $34.99 per child ages 3-9. Prices include tax, but not gratuity.
Advanced reservations for both of these dining experiences are highly recommended. Admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios is required. Entertainment and Character appearances are subject to change.

I've also heard some buzz on the Runner boards about a Run Disney Star Wars themed race possibly  taking place during this weekend in 2016. It would certainly make sense seeing that Run Disney has eliminated one race ( leaving an open spot) and that it IS Star Wars weekend.  We have no interest in the Star Wars themed race but I know if this happened it would make a lot of runners very happy, so for that, I hope Disney considers it!

Are you a Star Wars Fan?

Why it's worth Visiting the Disney Outlet near Disney World

I have always been curious about the Disney outlets in Orlando. I have heard of people getting some really good deals on merchandise and have heard that sometimes you can even find left over race merchandise. I've never had the opportunity to check out these outlets because I normally depend on Disney's Magical Express as my main mode of transportation.

However, on our past trip to Disney for the Tower of Terror race weekend, we had our own transportation so we decided to check it out.

There are actually 2 Disney outlets in Orlando.  One is at the Premium Outlets on Vineland Avenue and the other one was on international drive.

Since we were staying in the Boardwalk resort area, we chose to go to the ones on Vineland avenue because they were the closer ones. They were very easy to get to and it took us less than 15 minutes.

The actually name for the Disney outlet store is the Disney Character Outlet.

Here are my thoughts.

It was not as large as I was expecting it to be. It was probably just a little bigger than the Disney stores at the mall.

The did have a nice variety of merchandise.

They were selling a lot of those tote bags and throw blankets that you would normally see at  World of Disney ( and other gift shops). You know, the ones that you can purchase for an additional $19.99 when you spend $50 or more.

I thought the prices were fabulous and most of the stuff was 50 % off what you would find at the onsite gift shops.  I saw some of the picture frames that I purchase during previous Disney trips for sale here at half the price I paid.

I was looking to see what kind of race merchandise they had left and unfortunately the only thing they had was from a race I did not run.

Too bad, because I actually thought it was a cute shirt!

I don't know why I hoped to see other race merchandise here. It would make sense that Expedition Everest merchandise would be the only stuff  here because after all, that was the most recent Disney World  race at that point.

I was surprised to see that they even had a good selection of merchandise from Alunai.

I didn't really need any other souvenirs, but if I did, this would have been a great place to stock up on them. This would be a great place to bring kids to shop since the prices were so much less than the gift shops in the parks.

If you do happen to have your own transportation, I would recommend checking out the outlets.  I did see that they had cab service running as well, so it looked like catching a cab wouldn't be a problem ( but I bet that would be costly).

Have you been to the Disney Outlets in Orlando?  Do you find that you "over buy" in the souvenir department? ~M