Who’s the leader of the club that’s made for you and me? MICKEY MOUSE! Raise your hand if you are a Disney Fanatic. I sure am! Last weekend I took Friday off, so Joe and I headed about an hour east to Orlando to check out the Disney Health Expo. It was held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports. The main reason for the expo was so the runners could pick up their packets and bibs. There were several races scheduled that weekend, which included a 5k, 1/2 marathon and the marathon. Unfortunately it was too late to sign up, but as a newbie runner I figured it would be a great experience to feel the excitement in the air, and to check out all the awesome running gear. I have no clue who the best companies are or what a runner should wear. I am still learning all about what it takes to be a real runner. I hope that this time next year I will find myself entered for the Disney Princess 1/2. I am taking it slow by filling my calendar with 5k’s through the year. I figured that by the end of 2013 I should be ready to take on a 1/2. In the mean time I need stock up on gear to help me do my best.
When Joe and I finally got there it was jammed pack. We ended up having to park in a field and walk over the sports center. However, in true Disney fashion, it was very organized. They had the Disney cast members directing cars into the field and when it was time to cross the street where the Sports Complex was there the cast members who acted as street patrols.
The first thing we saw when we finally crossed through the entrance was a Ferrari 458. You can actually rent this car out and race it on the Disney race track.
I have never been to the Wide World of Sports. This place is a dream for any sports fan. It boasts acres of baseball fields, basket ball courts, field hockey, soccer and track. While Joe and I wanted to explore the fields we ran over to the building that housed the expo. There was actually a line to get into the building! The line moved fast and then we were faced with rows and rows of running gear! I felt like I won a running lottery. I was jumping for joy, for this was so exciting! There were rows and rows of great companies to check out. I had no idea where to begin.
FIT2RUN & FEETURES
The first booth I saw was Fit2Run. This is the same place I got tested for and bought my official running shoes. Roaming around the Fit2Run, I was approached by a chipper, excited young man in his early 20’s. He was clearly a sales associate and he had a pair of socks in his hand.
“We are running a special on Feetures socks. Have you ever tried them?” The enthusiastic young man asked.
Dubious, I replied “No. I just wear Walmart socks when I run.”
The young man then explained to me why Feetures are essential part of a runner’s uniform. Here is what I learned:
- They eliminate blisters.
- The compress the foot and give comfort and support
- They are light weight; you feel like you don’t even have them on.
- Made of natural and synthetic moisture managing fibers that keep the feet dry and soft.
Well, what could I lose. I was sold. I bought a purple pair in size small. A week has passed and I’ve used these socks on my runs. I love them! What a difference it makes to wear the right pair of socks. My $2.00 Walmart socks can’t even compete. I will be back to Fit2Run to stock up. You can find a full review I did here.
Here are my socks. I plan to get some more in other fluorescent colors.
I have been on the hunt for a good armband to wear. I needed an armband to hold my keys and phone (I use it to listen to books/music) while I run. Every jog I found my sweaty hands constantly gripping my phone and my feet would get poked by my key because I put it in my shoe.
“Ouch!”, Joe said. “Why the **** you puttin’ a key in your shoe?!”
I don’t know! Yes it did hurt Joe. Yes it did.
During Christmas I looked around at Target and Walmart, hoping I would find a decent one that I could add to my Christmas list. I didn’t care for the ones I saw; they were made of such cheap material or my phone didn’t fit.
Armpocket is just the ticket! My phone slid perfectly inside the sleeve. The material was thick and made of nice quality memory foam padding. The armband flexes with your arm and it came in hot pink. The best part the small pocket to hold your key- yeah! No more putting keys in my shoe Joe! BAM. I was sold again. Another item added to my running wardrobe.
You can find a full review I did here. Here is what it looks like:
I could have spent all day spending the dough but my wallet and bills disagreed. Instead I spent the rest of the time admiring the cute clothes and accessories. Besides I need to save up to pay for the registration fees so I can run an actual race. What’s the point of running if you don’t attend races?
RUNNING SKIRTS AND SWEATY BANDS
Two companies caught my eye. The first was RUNNING SKIRTS. Oh my goodness! They had zebras print and stripped skirts. I wanted to buy every single skirt on the rack. I spied a Minnie Mouse skirt to go with the Disney theme.
I wanted it so bad! The even have the running shorts too. I might splurge and buy it if I do a Disney 5k (which I really want to do). Girls you have to wear a Running Skirt for your next race. If Minnie isn’t your thing check out their website for super cute and hot styles.
A second company that I liked was SWEATY BANDS. Ladies if you want to look cute and keep the sweat out of your face at the same time, buy a Sweaty Band. They have shelves full of adorable and cute bands. Seriously look at this owl head band. I would love to drawer full of these bands:
Joe and I spent about 2 hrs at the Expo. Looking at racks of running gear isn’t Joe’s thing, however he was being such a good sport. For being so nice I decided to treat him to lunch. We had planned to eat dinner at Uno’s Chicago Pizza, so we wanted a light lunch. We split a turkey sandwich. It was on whole wheat bread, had onions, tomatoes and mayo made from avocado.
The hours stretched before us on this sunny, blue sky afternoon, so in true Joe and Nicole fashion it was time to do some explorin’. First order of business: challenge Joe to a race. Second order: find a track to race. After all we were at the ESPN WIDE WORLD OF SPORTS. There had to be a track to race on. We found one and no one was there! We had the track to ourselves. In fact all the sports fields were in empty because everyone was preoccupied with the expo.
Like a real USA Olympian, I kneeled down into my racing position. Beads of sweat poured down my face and my legs shook as they waited for take-off.
On your MARK….GET SET…..GO! I pushed off and ran as hard as my little short legs could take me. Unfortunately Joe’s leg took him farther. He won the race. It’s a good thing I didn’t place a bet on my winning.
After the race we walked along a path and took in all the sites and different playing fields. I decided to be a goof off and do some toe touches on the bouncy track. I haven’t done a toe touch since the 10 grade at cheer-leading try outs. Even after all of these years I can still do one, those I didn’t kick my legs as high as when I was 16.
I don’t know if some of you know those but at the ESPN WIDE WORLD OF SPORTS is where the Atlanta Braves does their spring training. After buying Joe his pretzel and a sprite we toured the stadium and took everything in as we sat in one the seats.
Joe and I decided we seen all to see at the Sports Complex. Our next stop on this mini Disney adventure was Downtown Disney. The parking lot was very light for a Friday afternoon. I’m guessing everyone was still at the expo. My number one store there is Mickey’s Pantry. I bought a packet of seasoning called Greek Seasoning. Every time I smell the mixture of spices it reminds me of Acropolis, my cherished Greek restaurant in Tampa. I see a Greek pita with tzatziki sauce in my future.
Joe spied this and it made me laugh because he said it reminded him of when we go on vacation. He was only joking…..I hope!
The afternoon eventually pulled their curtain backed and pinned it with a star. Now with twilight time upon us it was time for dinner at Uno’s. I get the same thing every time- a personal pan with chicken, onions, peppers on a deep dish crust. I wish there was an Uno’s back at home. Our bellies full and our bodies starting feel sleepy we realized that this fairy tale was nearing the end. It was time to board the blue carriage (Joe’s truck) and get back home before the clock stroke midnight.
The Fairy Godmother once did say “but like all dreams, well, I’m afraid this can’t last forever.” That is true, but only because you have to keep dreaming more dreams and achieving more goals. When Cinderella became a royal you don’t believe her dreams stopped there, do you?
There is always a second book whether it is told or not. Well it was time to wave my magic wand and keep dreaming. Now that I have my magic princess gear (my armband and socks), a new chapter in my life has opened. I will train to run the Disney Princess 1/2 in February of 2014. I have one year to join ranks with Cinderalla, Ariel, Snow White and all the other Disney Princesses and gain my crown (aka: Disney Princess Medal).
Have any of you ever ran a Disney race? If money were not object which races would you run?