Princess Half Marathon Weekend

Be a runDisney Princess!

Monthly Challenge

Virtual Coast 2 Coast Step Challenge!

Star Wars Weekends

A galactic experience for the whole family!

Fan Girl Favorites

Enjoying Star Wars, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Disney and all things Geeky!

Running With A View

Running, trails, biking, challenges, nutrition; it's all things I care about and love to do.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

ChEar Squad! Grab It While You Can!

ChEar Squad is a great way to get your family involved in your runDisney Experience!  They've been there through the months of training, you've relied on them for support, and you've promised them the parks when you finish!

Anyone can show up at the finish line and be a part of the ChEar Squad.  However, if you want great ChEar gear, special seating and private potties, you need to sign up!

There are 3 paid packages: Silver, Gold, Platinum

- $39
- ChEar Gear

- $65
- ChEar Gear
- Bleacher Seats
- Private Bathroom
- Hot and Cold Beverages

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

runDisney Registration Tips

Updated July 2015 
Registering for a runDisney race seems simple right?  Well it can be, but it can also be stressful when
the race sells out in minutes!  And the servers crash!  And you didn't get in!

So, over the years I have learned my lessons the hard way, and I have some tips to share with you to help make registering easier!

1. Know What You Will Be Registering For:  Don't wait till you log in to think about what you are going to register for, know before you go!
  • Will you be doing the Family 5K and Kids Races?  
  • Do you need the Chear Squad for your family?
  • Will you be doing the 10K or half or both?  
  • Did you want commemorative merchandise?
  • Did you want the Pasta Party?
Make a list and be ready!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Road ID : Be Seen Wearing It!

Identification I've been a Road ID proponent for years!  And it's not just popular with me;  the Road ID is a favorite
way of identification for sports enthusiasts, too!

But, what exactly is a Road ID? The Road ID is a wearable bracelet, anklet, necklace or shoe Identification that contains an essential message you want others to know in an emergency.  You have up to 6 lines of information that you can add to your ID such as your name, emergency contacts or special medical information: the ID becomes your voice when you are not able to speak.

Is it just for athletes?  who really needs it?  I believe that it is essential for everyone in your family to own a Road ID.  If you are not sure about how your family could use one, here are some considerations to think about:

Friday, January 23, 2015

Surviving the Princess Half Health and Fitness Expo!

Princess Half MarathonThe Princess Half Marathon was one of my favorite races!  Having all of my friends there with me made it all the more special!  But before we headed for the starting line, we had to make it through the runDisney Health and Fitness Expo!  Here are 6 ways to survive the somewhat chaotic show!

1.  Plan your Expo:
Before you even arrive at the Health and Fitness Expo you need a budget.  Review the vendors posted in the Event Program, have a list and know what you are looking for!

And decide when and where to meet.  It's packed, busy, and noisy.  Cell coverage may or may not work, it's best to have a meet up plan ahead of time!

Tip:  Typical prices include Jackets, $75; Shirts, $35; Pins, $16; Accessories, $35.

Tip:  If you are staying at a runDisney Host Resort, you will be able to catch a bus at your resort to and from the Expo.  The Buses will marked :  just look for "Event Transportation".  If you are staying offsite, be aware that parking at the ESPN Wide World of Sports will be packed and busy.  If you plan on taking a taxi, allow for $30 or more each way. 

2.  Pre-register for New Balance shoes:  If you are planning to purchase the New Balance Disney shoes, then I would suggest pre-registering.  The attendance at the Princess Half Expo is a very large and the slots for trying on and purchasing shoes will go quickly.  Runners and spectators can sign up at the New Balance Virtual Queue during the Expo.

New Balance Disney Shoes

Monday, January 19, 2015

The Force Was With This Race! The Inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon!

"The circle is now complete," the Inaugural Star War Half Marathon race was a success!

I have been looking forward to this race since its announcement!  The Galaxy far, far away was coming to runDisney, and I was going to be a part of the very first race!  And race day was so exciting!

It was awesome being up close and personal with our hosts for the start of this race!  Rudy Novotny and Carissa Bealert were joined by a Jedi Master and his trusty droids, R2D2 and C3PO.

The Jedi told us that we were all safe:  the course had been cleared of the Dark Side.
What a relief!!  No worries!   All that was left for me to do was stretch and watch clips from the original movies!  We had the best pre-race show ever!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

The Inaugural 10k Star Wars Race!

What a great race! The Star Wars Race weekend has been amazing, and the 10K was super cool.  It had all the swagger of a runDisney race, but with the intensity of the Empire Strikes Back!

The day started early, but luckily the Paradise Pier Disney hotel's front door opens up to Corral D and all I had to do was walk up to A. I looked in awe at all of the amazing costumes, but felt intimidated the closer I got to the front.   Everyone was intense and focused on running their fastest race.
That changed as I got to hang out with a "Goofy" friend of mine and seeing that even though everyone was serious about their run they still loved showing their Disney Side.

The Inaugural Star Wars 5K!

I really love the runDisney 5Ks because these races aren't as serious as the other races in the
weekend:  just really a lot of fun!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Costumes for a Galaxy Far, Far Away

It's me again!  Sylvia, The Kessel Runner, is in Disneyland having a blast at the inaugural runDisney Star Wars Half Marathon! Sylvia asked me to write about one of the most important parts of a runDisney event, The Running Costumes!!! More importantly how can you show off your fandom while maintaining functionality. For as much fun it may be to run through Snow White's castle, you still have 13.1 miles to run.  And on top of that you will need to navigate the Southern California weather.  Therefore, this difficult balancing act brings out your creativity and design skills to try and make the most awesomest costumes!

This race I've decided to go all out! Disney has combined some of my favorite things into one race: running, Star Wars, Disney and Princess Leia.  So I'll be running the Rebel challenge (10K and the half) while The Kessel Runner is doing the 5K and the half, and that means we will need  two outfits for 2 races!

Zam Wesell

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Star Wars Half Marathon Packet Pickup Tips!

It is the final days to your magical race!  Lots of excitement, nerves and unknowns await for anyone who has never run this race or a runDisney race!

Put those nerves aside, and get ready!   Here is what you need to do to be ready for Packet Pickup

1. Print out your waivers.

If you don't have your waivers, you can't get your packet with your race bib, etc.  Very Important!

For Star Wars Half Weekend you will need waiviers for
Your Races
Wookie Welcome Party
Chear Squads

 and these can be found on the runDisney Star Wars Event Page.

Tip: Bring a photo ID to the Expo; you won't get your packet without the Waiver and an ID.

If flying, put your waiver in your carry-on bag, and print out an extra copy.

2. Each One Gets Their Own

With runDisney's new packet pick up policy, you must pick up your own packet and are not allowed to pick up for anyone in your family or team.

The only exception is for minors under 18, and a family member will be able to do this for them. 
Tip:  Recent races have shown that the weather can play havoc with your schedule, and you need to be prepared for running late.

3. Determine Your Corrals
Your Corral will be printed on your bib.

You will no longer be able to bring your proof of time at Runners Relations to change your Corral.  

**Get everything together as soon as you can, this should be a happy race!  Being prepared helps you put your worries behind and focus and the amazing fun you will be having!

Need more Info?  Check out these Race-Ready Tip!

1. What You Need for the Race

Your Race Check-in Bag
Packing for a runDisney Race
Last Minute Checklist

2. How to Survive !

What to do the night before your race
Having the right nutrition for your race

Get everything together as soon as you can, this should be a happy race!  Being prepared helps you put your worries behind and focus and the amazing fun you will be having!

If you need any help with race preparations, please contact me!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Star Wars Half Marathon Tips

Getting to the finish line isn't easy and there are many steps in between.  Here are some tips to help you finish with confidence and obtain that much deserved medal!

1. What You Need

Packet Pick up is #1
Your Race Check-in Bag
Packing for a runDisney Race
Last Minute Checklist

2. How to Survive

What to do the night before your race
Having the right nutrition for your race

If you have any more questions, please contact me at

Saturday, January 10, 2015

The FitBit Charge HR - A Review

I have a constant need to know more.  It is beyond just an addiction, but has become a way of life for me.  And as addictions go, knowing how to take care of your body seems pretty important.  Having the Fitbit Force tracker and then including the myFitnessPal app and the Fitbit Aria scale, has helped me make smarter decisions in what I eat, when to park further away to get more steps, or running that extra mile so that I can eat desert.  Wearing the band has become a constant reminder that my decisions and actions do have consequences.  So when Fitbit announced a new line of trackers, I was all in!  And luckily, Fitbit felt that I was a good candidate to get my Charge HR before they are officially were released!

What Remains the Same:

  1. ACTIVITY: Accurately measures steps, floors climbed, calories burned, and distanced traveled helps me know my progress
  2. GOALS: Setting and getting notifications of goal achievement (steps, miles, calories) is a great way to keep motivated
  3. TIME: Doubles as a wrist watch, with an on-demand digital display, is just so convenient
  4. SLEEP: Sleep monitoring, see how much and the quality of rest you are getting each night
  5. FRIENDS: Taunting, cheering and messaging your friends, allow you to encourage everyone, while keeping the group accountable.  Making healthy decisions is much easier with friends to support you
  6. INTEGRATION: Works well with the Aria Scale to incorporate your weight and Fat % goals, and seamlessly integrates with myFitnessPal to track what you have eaten and how many calories you have remaining to aid in fulfilling your goal
  7. DESIGN: Slim, light and fits well on the wrist.  Don’t even notice you are wearing it most of the time
The Upgrades:

  1. HEART RATES: THE BIG ONE! Constant Heart Rate monitoring is tremendous.  I am able to see my resting heart rate, and the tracker shows my current heart rate.  The best part is that I am able to set my Heart Rate Zones (Peak, Cardio, Fatburn) and I am able to monitor and adjust my runs to keep within those specific levels.  Your heart rate is the optimal way of determining your optimal workout level, since as you get better in shape your body adjusts and you can go faster/longer while keeping that rate.  Now I effectively know when I should push harder or I’m pushing too hard.  This is how my body is able to communicate with me, and I just don’t “push” through the pain.
  2. PHONE CALLS: With the recent software patch, while your phone and Fitbit are connected via Bluetooth you see who is calling on your tracker (great for while I’m running or at the gym)
  3. CLASP: The clasp has changed from the original's, meaning they have moved to a more traditional locking mechanism (no more rubber bands to keep the band from falling off)
  4. SIZING: Additional sizing, there is now a Small, Medium and Large
  5. VOICE CUES: The Fitbit app has the option to give you progress updates over phone.  Meaning while you are running, it will tell you miles, pace, time, splits, and even calories burned. over your music.  Fun way to keep me aware of my progress.
  6. CHALLENGES: Challenges have been updated to allow more ways for you and your friends to help motivate you in achieving your goals.  The workweek hustle, Weekend Warrior and the daily showdown are all favorites of mine, and these are great ways to get those competitive juices flowing and to push each other to be healthy.
  7. SKIN ISSUES: I have worn mine at work, sleeping, during long runs, and playing Just Dance and haven’t experienced any problems over the last month.  Whatever they changed seems to have worked.

Room for Improvement:
  1. BATTERY LIFE: The battery life has dropped tremendously.  With the old Force I was able to go at least 7 days between charges.  Now with the ChargeHR I am forced to recharge every 3 days.  I do understand that the Heart Rate monitor draws a great deal of power, and I have the ability to turn it off (but I don’t want to).  So I just have to remind myself to charge the tracker over-night every few days

Why I love it!
  1. I am able to know more and make better decisions about being healthy
  2. I have real time information on my daily activities as well as my exercise
  3. I know when to push myself and when to slow down, and keep my body operating at an optimal level
  4. Having friends motivate and cheering me on, makes getting through the tough days easier.
  5. Wearing the device
I highly recommend all FitBit products, especially the new Charge HR!  

The Kessel Runner will provide a 10% rebate to anyone who purchases a Charge HR through this link and comments on this blog!  


Tash – The Deliberate Dad (  Through my blog, I provide a window into my world as Cub Master, runDisney addict, Black Belt, Pok√©mon aficionado, dad, and friend.  Follow us on our journey, helping each other become better people.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Virtual Coast to Coast: Step Challenge from Disneyland to WDW

January 2015

The Disney Coast to Coast Medal was one of my favorite memories of participating in runDisney.  It
was also the most challenging!  You couldn't slow down your training and you had to stay focused.

Since I'm running the Star Wars Half Marathon at Disneyland this month, I'm thinking about including the Wine and Dine Half to achieve another Coast to Coast Medal.  So, I thought...

What a great idea for our Step Challenge!  We will walk from Disneyland to WDW!

- You will have from Monday, January 5th 12am to Saturday, November 7th Midnight to complete the challenge.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

My Basic Traveling First Aid Kit

On my first trip to Disney I may have carried Band-Aids.  However, each time we went, something new happened:  from stomach aches, to falls, to insect bites, to allergic reactions. These little calamities required a trip to the mini store at the resort.  Always a pricey excursion, I left the store wishing I had been better prepared.  As a result, I learned that there were 8 basic things that needed to be in my Traveling First Aid Kit: 

1. Band-Aids!  Inevitably, there is going to be a blister, a scrape, or a cut.  I take the bandages out of the box to save room, and I try to buy Disney ones for fun. 

2.  Wipes:  From alcohol, to antibiotic, to saline, those blisters and cuts will need to be cleaned.

3.  Antibiotic Creams:  Nothing worse that a cut or blister getting infected, and I pack a variety.   

4.  Cotton Balls and Q-Tips:  So many uses for these staples!  I pull out just a few from each box and store them separately in a small plastic bag.

5.  Pain Relievers:  I also plan for the unexpected headache, swollen knee or cramps.  We all take different types, and I try to pack a few of each.

6.  Stomach Remedies:  We've had everything over the years.  I pull one sleeve from a store box and stick it inside my kit to include ailments such as diarrhea, constipation, indigestion and gas.

7.  Allergy Relief:  Benadryl cream along with seasonal allergy relief is the bag.

8.  Eyes and Ears:  The hot sun and chlorine pools require some added care on the ears and eyes.  A small bottle of Visine and Swim-Ear are in there, too.

I use a brightly colored cosmetic bag that I received free from a department store promotion, and clearly mark it "Band Aids  First Aid".  

I place the bag right next to the TV where it can be easily found.

I keep the bag stored in my suitcase while at home so that It will never be forgotten.  I do a quick check a few days before I leave to make sure everything is still within the expiration date, and put what needs to be replaced on my shopping list.

I leave room to add extra items, such as an ace bandage, if I expect to have problems on the trip.

This kit is just my might-need-essentials and is perfect for Disney or any family getaway.  (I do keep all prescriptions separately)

We are learning to be prepared for almost anything - because almost anything happens with us!

What are the basic things in your First Aid Kit?

December Step Challenge - A Success!

As our December Step Challenge comes to an end, we can all look back and feel accomplished!  We had a lot of fun, met and exceeded personal goals, made new friends, and kept moving through the Holidays!

We had 8 challenges that we sometimes breezed through, and sometimes struggled through!

Dec 1 – 5
$20 Disney Gift Card
Kevin Jones
Dec 6 – 7
Feetures Socks
Lee Carver
Dec 8 – 12
$20 Disney Gift Card
Kathy Fayard
Dec 13 – 14
Yorkberg Compression Sleeves
Kathy Fayard
Dec 15 – 19
$20 Disney Gift Card
Kevin Jones
Dec 20 – 21
$10 Starbuck Gift Card
Tash Solangi
Dec 22  - 26
$20 Disney Gift Card
Missy Jones
Dec 27 – 31
$50 Disney Gift Card
Kevin Jones

And here are the amazing statistics!

How To Join a Kessel Runner Step Challenge

We Love Step Challenges here at Kessel Runner!

Everyone should achieve 10000 steps each day to maintain a healthy lifestyle, and we are a community that works together, encourages each other, and provides some great competition!

Want to Join?

What do you need?
A Fitness Tracker, Pedometer, Step App on your Phone - that's all!

How Do I Report Steps?
-Fitbit: Join me on fitbit and I will keep track of your steps!  Send a fitbit friend request to
-Other Trackers: Post weekly in an event page or send me a weekly update via messenger.

Where Can I Join?
The following are active Step Challenges  :

Coast 2 Coast Challenge
Mardi Gras Step Challenge

When Can I Join?
Now! There is no time like the present!  We'd love to have you in our fitness group!