Wine & Dine Half Costume Reveal

I’m leaving on a jet plane on a redeye tonight to the House of Mouse to do the Wine & Dine Half on Saturday.  This will be my third Run Disney event of the year (Tinker Bell and Tower of Terror were the others) and I’ll be getting my 2014 Coast to Coast medal.  For this run I decided to dress up as everyone’s favorite purple dragon – FIGMENT!  I loved Figment since I was a kid and my stuffed Figment from back in the day kept me company while I made the outfit.  For those of you who may not be familiar with Figment, he is a character from the Journey into Imagination ride.  When the ride was redone to go thru the Imagination Institute Figment was originally left out and then added back in when people complained.  When Epcot opened there were no Disney characters (from films or the fab 5) there so Figment was really the only character in the park.

Dreamfinder & Figment:

figment

And here is my costume.  Well, the majority of my costume anyway.  I will also be wearing purple compression socks and purple arm warmers:

For the costume I found the visor on Ebay (it was park merch that was retired).  I made the sparkle skirt using the tutorial I found on Pinterest (there is a link in one of my previous blog posts).  I had to buy the fabric online as I couldn’t find light purple in any stores around here.  Remember if you making a skirt with the Confetti Dot fabric to sew thru strips of wax paper to prevent the sewing machine needle from getting gummed up and jammed.  I couldn’t find a yellow/red tee so I bought a white tee with red trim and dyed it yellow.  Then did the name with an iron-on transfer.  Last pieces were the tail and wings, which were both made out of felt.  The wings also have a layer of batting between the two pieces of felt to give them more structure.  The tail was sewn with a loop/pocket on the top and I just threaded my race belt thru to make it easy to attach.

I love this costume and am now just praying for no rain during the run!  What is everyone dressing up as for W&D?

 

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Dopey Training Weeks 16-18

So I realized I’ve totally sucked in talking about what is going on with my Dopey training.  Oops.  So, here is a little catch up.  Week 16 was a double run weekend, with 7 on Sat and 17 on Sun.  I changed my Saturday intervals to 2:00/0:30 and did a slightly slower than normal pace.  I do a 4-1 interval on my long runs so technically I was still running the same amount but the more frequent walk breaks makes it feel easier, so I thought that would work well.  But it kinda backfired on me during the Sunday run.  I was good (other than the sheer and utter boredom of running that long, around and around the lake I go) up to mile 13.  Then I just hit a total wall.  It was weird, I didn’t feel physically tired, like huffing and puffing tired, it was just that every part of my body (feet, legs, knees, etc) started hurting like a mofo all at once.  When I signed up for Dopey I had the plan to run/walk thru mile 14 of the full, then walk the second half and was planning to train that way as well.  Now my stretch goal is to run/walk longer (otherwise it’s just so long to finish), like to mile 20 then walk the last 6.  Once I started feeling crappy I told myself to push thru to mile 15, then I could walk the last 2 miles home.  I only made it to 14.5 before I gave up and started walking.  I figured maybe I’d be able to run the last mile or so after a longer walking break.  Spoiler alert, that didn’t happen.  My takeaways from this run were first that I have to ratchet the intervals back for the half to conserve energy for the full, going to try a 2-1 next time for the double run weekend.  Second, I need to listen to my body more and accept walking earlier if I need to.  By the time I gave up my feet were swollen and killing me, so I was walking super slow for the first mile of walking.  Had I just started walking earlier I would have had a faster overall pace.

Week 17 was just a 5 mile weekend run and Week 18 just a 6 mile. The 6 mile was supposed to have a Magic Mile, but I really don’t understand them all that well so it really ended up just being a standard 6 mile run.  I actually ended up skipping the Tues night run of week 17 coming off the long run weekend.  That is the first time I skipped a workout in the training and I actually felt guilty the entire week.  Hey, what can I say I’m a rule-follower and I was supposed to run twice.  But after the 17 mile long run my PF was killing me until Weds.  That aspect of the recovery led me to rethink what to do about this week in the training plan.  It’s Week 19 and this is supposed to be a double run weekend with 8.5/20 miles.  But I’m heading to WDW for Wine & Dine.  I was originally planning to move the runs up a week to last weekend but decided against it.  I’m heading out on Weds and was afraid that walking around the parks would just keep my PF irritated and I’d be in pain before even starting to run the half on Sat.  I want to be able to enjoy the run and after party, so the long runs will be happening next weekend instead.

I also decided that I don’t think I’m going to train all the way up to 26 miles like the Galloway plan calls for.  There are 3 more long runs left (yay, only 3 more weekends of torture!) – 20 miles, 23 miles and 26 miles.  I figure I’ll just do 22-23 for the last two instead.  I also really need to find a running buddy for those last 3, it’s just so boring to do them by yourself.  Going to try to rope my brother into joining me (he’s doing Dopey too).  B is currently injured so not sure how much training she is really going to get thru at this point and I need to stick with the plan.

Hope the rest of you Dopeys are doing well with your training!

Thoughts on MagicBands

My trip to WDW for the Tower of Terror 10-Miler was my first experience with MagicBands and FP+.   I was tweaking some FP+ for the Wine & Dine trip next week and realized I never really shared my thoughts on them.  I had the bands ahead of the trip but since we bought our APs upon arrival I couldn’t really do much with them beforehand.  I should also mention, I’m an OCD planner, my friend B who is doing the runs with me is not at all.  So, she is just set up on mydisneyexperience account and I do all the planning for us both.  It’s a win-win for both of us, we see a lot, she doesn’t have to deal with it and I get the full control I love so much.  Haha.

Going into the trip I didn’t see the upside of the bands and I HATED the fact that FP+ could be booked 60 days out.  Combine that with needing to book dining 180 days out and it was all just so freaking early to plan details.  Plus not having the APs until we got there meant we missed the 60 day window not only for the ToT trip but for Wine & Dine as well.  So I started out Anti-band.  I went to Disneyland the weekend after we got back from the ToT trip (gotta put that Premier pass to work!) and found myself wishing they had the MB system them, so I guess I was a convert pretty quick.

I will say that it takes some practice figuring out how to use the system for FP+ and planning efficiently and I certainly missed some opportunities last time.  I think it wouldn’t be as easy in the parks if you don’t have a smartphone to use the app on.  But here are my thoughts on the uses for the MagicBands.  And the parks had free Wi-Fi now, although it dropped a lot, especially during the rides and then didn’t reconnect automatically too well.

1.  Hotel Room Key – This was awesome.  Just wave the band by the doorknob and you’re in, it was so nice not having to dig out the keycard everytime.  Especially when just running to the foodcourt for drink refills or when you have a bunch of stuff in your hands.  With kids and a stroller I can only imagine this would be an even bigger help.

2.  Park Tickets – Again, nice not to have to dig out another card to show, but I don’t feel like it’s really any faster to get in yet.  Each station has 4 MB readers and they take up about how much space a turnstile did.  So 4 to 1 should be faster, right?  I think it will be but a lot of people still don’t understand what to do the first time thru and it slows everything down.

3. Charging Stuff to the Room – Awesome again, for me at least.  My card was on the hotel room so anything charged on the band went to it.  You create a pincode to use in conjunction with the band to make purchases so nobody can just buy stuff if you lose the band.  Unfortunately both bands on the room were linked to my card, so B had to still pay with her card for her stuff.  I did some research and it appears you can link bands to different cards so we’ll be trying that for Wine & Dine.  We have 3 people in the room for Dopey and will want 3 different cards so I really hope it works and is easy.  But they need to get to the point of being able to link different cards on the website before the trip though since the lines at the front desk are always so long.  I guess families are the biggest customers and they wouldn’t have this need as much though.

4.  FP+ – The upside was that even that night before I could easily get FP for everything except the holy grail items of Anna/Elsa and 7DMT.  We didn’t go to the Studios during normal park hours last time so not sure if I could have gotten a Toy Story Mania FP either.  But other than those you can get most without much planning ahead.  Some parks have tiers which suck as you can only choose one item from the top tier and most of the stuff in the second tier didn’t seem to need a FP anyway.  Seriously, when was the last time you saw a long line for Spaceship Earth, Imagination or Living with the Land?  My big miss last time was that we ended up going on the Seas ride well before our FP because there was no line anwyay.  I should have immediately afterwards gone to the app and updated the FP+ to try to get another one for Maelstrom while it was still early in the day. But the time I went to the kiosks later in the day after all the FP+ there were no more Maelstrom times available (there had been a ton the night before).  So, definitely watch the wait times and use the app.  I use the Touring Plans App for wait times.  If you can’t get a FP+ for a specific attraction, keep checking and try to just “change experience” on one of your FP+ to see if one pops up.  I was just able to get some for 7DMT on next Friday yesterday morning and had been checking daily since booking them for Wine & Dine right after I got back from T0T.  Also, score another point for not having to dig out a paper FP ticket, just wave the band at the Mickey head in the line and go.  Once you use your three FP+ you can add more if avaialble, but can only do it at the kiosks in the parks, which is a pain.  You should be able to do it via the app so you don’t waste time trekking to the kiosks.  Another thing I don’t like is that you can’t make your 3 FP+ at multiple parks.  For example, if I plan to hit Studios in the morning then go to MK, it would be nice to pick up an early FP for RNR in Studios, then the other 2 for the afternoon in MK.  I park hop a lot so that really bugged me that I couldn’t do it.

5.  Ride Photos – They now automatically link all ride photos to your mydisneyexperience account via the MBs and leave them there for 45 days.  I just looked and my pics from the ToT trip are there.  Cool!  I’m a “make stupid poses and take a pic of the pic” type of person so love that you can see them later.  No more getting blocked by someone else doing the same thing in the post-ride viewing area.  I am particularly looking forward to this feature for my post-run medal flash poses on the rides at W&D and Dopey!

6.  Not really a MB feature in and of itself is the app itinerary.  It will show you not only your FP+ rides/times, but also your dining reservations.  You can also add shows/parades/fireworks times so that you see them with your FP+ to remind you of the time.  Note taht the FP lunch reservations for Be Our Guest don’t show up in your itinerary, so make a note or screenshot the confirmation number so you have it on you just in case you need it (we didn’t when we went).  This is what your daily itinerary looks like (see, now you can all stalk me at Wine & Dine, haha):

So, overall I really, really liked them.  I’m not a person who worries about Big Brother.  Hell, if they can tailor my offers to my activities I’m all for it.  I don’t think the system was necessarily work the billions they spent on it but the marketing manager in me can certainly see the massive amount of marketing potential surrounding them.  I actually think it would be awesome to work on marketing strategies using them (Yo Disney, feel free to give me a call!).  I’m still impressed with how pin-pointed in location they can get with them.  They were comfotable to wear and since I don’t wear a watch anymore it didn’t feel like too much on my wrist.  It did, however, make me constantly try to check the time by looking at the MB.  My brain just felt something on my wrist and thought “watch”.  So heads up to Disney Merch, make a cheap little digital clock band to slide on them and you’d make a fortune.  And lastly, the little Mickey head that turns green is cute.

What do you guys think of the MagicBand system?

Running in the dark….kinda sucks.

Last weekend was a step back week for me (I’m a week ahead of the Galloway plan because of Tower of Terror next weekend), so I just had to do 3 miles.  I ended up doing it on Sat night so I could get an idea of what it’s like to run in the dark.  Hmm, that made it sound like I strategically planned to do that, didn’t it?  In full disclosure I ended up meeting up with a friend to catch up over a little day drinking on Sat afternoon, which led to a post-day drinking nap.  I woke up about 20 min or so before sunset, took Max on his evening walk then decided to just bang out the 3 mile run.  I grabbed my super duper bright flashlight and set on my way.  I used to be the product manager for flashlights where I work so picked up this $150 handheld ultra bright one in a sample sale, so this is good flashlight and I figured it’d light my way sufficiently.  Not so much.  It was still dusk for the first mile and I was on a good pace, then it really got dark and I slowed down more and more.  I kept obsessing on how the flashlight batteries must be dying.  Or maybe when it’s pitch black there is only so much light you are going to get.  It didn’t seem like I was outrunning the light, just not enough light getting to the ground.  My neighborhood is pretty dark, not a whole lot of street lights or house lights near the curb.  Plus, it’s old (1950s-60s) so lots of cracks and uneven sidewalks from overgrown trees.  Adding to that, my depth perception is not the greatest in the dark.  So I was paranoid I was going to twist my ankle or eat it at any time.  This experiment left me thinking two things:  1.  I am never runing again in my neighborhood after dark.  If I want to run outside at night I need to find a running group that goes somewhere with more lighting.  2.  I really hope Disney puts a lot of lights on the course for ToT and Wine & Dine.  With my luck I’ll trip and jack up my Dopey training.  I’m not worried about the start time of the RunDisney events, during the winter I usually go to the gym between 9-10pm anyway because I hate waiting for machines when it’s crowded.  Just worry about being able to see and not fall on my face.

Dopey Challenge Training Week 11 or is it 12?

This week was technically week 11 on the Galloway training plan.  It called for the two mid-week runs and was a step back week with only 3 miles on the weekend.  I’m doing the Tower of Terror 10-Miler in week 14 of the plan which is a long run week.  So I decided to skip week 11 on the plan and go right to 12.  That will give me a step back next week, a Sat/Sun long run weekend, then the ToT 10-Miler weekend, then I’m back to a step back week and on the plan schedule the week after.  Well, until I figure out what to do with Wine & Dine anyway.  I though about just using the 10 miler was my long run per the plan but given that weekend calls for 5.5 miles on Sat and 15 miles on Sun it just didn’t seem like enough.  The problem with my alterations was that it is freaking hot here this weekend!  We’re talking 100+ on both days.  I decided just to suck it up, go early and accept it would be a slow run.

The 4 mile run on Sat was uneventful, but it was already getting warm by the end.  Today I got up at 6, took Max for a quick walk, ate something and headed out at 7am.  My goals for today were simple and caring about pace was not one of them:  1.  Not bonk, 2. Not have stomach issues, 3. Get thru the mileage and not keel over from the heat.  Well, 2 out of 3 ain’t bad.  Finished the 13.1 and I didn’t die.  I had a bout of tummy issues but thankfully it happened near the entrance to the lake on my way home, so yay for indoor plumbing, that was a plus.  After that short break it was just a couple more miles home.  I was OK for the first 8, then the heat was out in full force.  And it sucked.  So I shortened the run intervals and kept dumping water on my head.  I swear the last 5 miles took just as long as the first 8.  The last 2 miles of any long run always seem to be a struggle and today was no different.  I ended up walking about 3/4 miles of that all the while in my head getting annoyed with myself on why I was struggling.  But logically I guess it makes sense given that the extra mileage each week should be hard.  I decided to leave the pity party and just switched to a 1-1 interval for the last 1.5 miles and that made it a lot easier.  So, I finished and while my overall pace on long runs still suck, at least it has improved with each one during my Dopey Training, so I guess that’s something.

And this was the temp when I finished.  It was seriously so hot that my visor wasn’t enough to hold the sweat on my head.  My eyes were stinging from the salt in the sweat by the time I got home. I can’t believe I’m going to say this (I love the heat in normal day to day life), but I’m looking forward to the cooler fall/winter weather for this training.  It’s not like we have seasons here for fall/winter weather mean highs between 65-75.  Then I can actually sleep in and not have to worry about heat during runs.

Dopey Challenge Training Week 10

So I’m finally starting to feel stronger on the short mid-week runs, the long runs not so much. This was week 10 of the Galloway plan but really only the second true long run (over 6 miles). My 9 mile run a couple weeks ago was pretty miserable and today’s 11 miles wasn’t much better.

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I made sure I ate before and was feeling fine for the first 6 miles. I’m doing all of my Dopey long run training on a 5-1 interval and up until about mile 7 my average pace was sitting right around 12:05-12:10 which is my half marathon pace so all was good. Then it went to hell. I was hot and my stomach was not happy. Am I the only one who gets tummy issues when they run? Annoying. Anyway, I was on the trail around the lake by my house where bathrooms are sparse so I walked for a bit until it settled down. Ate my shot bloks and tried to get back at it. I was running much slower but got to about 9.5 and was pretty much toast and walked most of the remainder. Every time I’d start running it felt like I should just be running to a bathroom, if you get my drift. The last 1/2 mile I was mad at myself questioning why I was struggling so much (I bonked at mile 7 of the last long run) and questioning if I was going to be able to do both Dopey and the Rebel Challenge back to back at all. Then I checked what the temp actually was when I got home to see what exactly I was running in:

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Yup, that’ll do it. No wonder I was so tapped out at the end. Hopefully it will get a little better when it cools off, usually in mid-Oct around here.

The Galloway plan has step back weeks every other weekend and I’m trying to figure out what I’m going to in the next couple months. The weekend of the Tower of Terror 10-Miler I’m supposed to do 5.5 on Sat and 15 on Sun. Then the weekend of Wine & Dine I’m supposed to do 8.5 on Sat and 20 on Sun. Trying to figure out if I want to just call the events enough or switch and do the Sat/Sun runs the weekends before and use the events as the step back weeks. Decisions, decisions.