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Bay Area modern day super woman, blogger & influencer, Jindy, writes about parenting, travel, running, Disneyland, runDisney, entertainment, sports, food, fitness, beauty, fashion, recipes and other fabulous things.

28 degrees of perfection. How I accidentally found my ideal running temperature.

Yesterday morning I woke up bright and early, excited to go for a run along the Truckee River in Downtown Reno. 

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While I was packing for this trip to tour the University of Nevada with my daughter, I made sure to throw in my long sleeved Star Wars 10K tech tee and Nike compression tights because I expected it to be a little cold. You know, somewhere in the 40s.

Instead, I woke up to this.

Good morning!

Good morning!

I also had gloves, a Nike jacket and a Hollister vest I'd packed that I could throw on. So down to the casino I went for my pre-run coffee, dressed in layers and dripping in sweat. Because heaters. Casinos have heaters and they love to use them. Ugh.

Coffee & gambling at 7:00am

Coffee & gambling at 7:00am

After a few sips of coffee and losing a dollar at blackjack, I headed out into the cold to run.

The moment you realize you have to carry these jackets

The moment you realize you have to carry these jackets

It didn't take long for me to realize I had way too much crap on. The vest came off immediately.

Beautiful photo stops along the Truckee River

Beautiful photo stops along the Truckee River

The few times I really pushed my pace I found the Nike jacket to be a bit too much. Off it went as well. By the end of my run / photo walk, I was down to my gloves, tech tee & pants.

Perfect running weather!

Perfect running weather!

I always love short runs in different cities. Exploring and sparking up all the senses with new scenery makes running so much more enjoyable than mindlessly running the usual route at home, hamster style.

What was extra special about this run was the temperature. I always run hot, and have been struggling to find races in cooler temperatures. Now that I know what feels good, I can hopefully find the perfect race location for a big PR in 2015!

I ordered breakfast to go on the way back up to our room, and while I waited I had a glass of bubbly. 

When in Rome

When in Rome

Even after 2 years of running, I'm still learning what works best for me and tweaking my training to fit my goals. I don't plan on moving from California anytime soon, so the pleasure of training in this great weather may never happen for me again - but I will definitely be seeking out races in cooler locations. Feel free to hit me up with your suggestions! 

#Disneyland60 Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Begins May 22, 2015

During an after-hours event at Disneyland last night, the @Disneyland Twitter account and Disney Parks Blog joined forces to announce to the online community that the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, marking the resort’s 60th anniversary, will begin Friday, May 22, 2015.

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As time has shown, Disneyland marked the beginning of something bigger than anyone could have imagined and this Diamond Celebration embraces its rich history while honoring Walt Disney’s commitment to pushing boundaries to create exciting and innovative new experiences for our guests.
— Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts

Below is a summary of everything you need to know from yesterday's announcement regarding the diamond anniversary themed decor and the 3 new nighttime shows:

  • Decor: The parks are getting a shiny new overlay in the form of bling. In keeping with the diamond anniversary theme, Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle and my home-away-from-home, Carthay Circle Theatre in Disney California Adventure, will be adorned in sparkle. Each iconic building will be with bedazzled with its own diamond encrusted medallion featuring the letter “D.” 
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  • New fireworks show: “Disneyland Forever” Fireworks Spectacular will change the way we look at fireworks on Main Street U.S.A. (and other park areas) forever. Utilizing projection and other special effects, the show will be completely immersive. Meaning, it won't matter when that inconsiderate dad standing in front of you puts his kid on his shoulders anymore. At least, that's what I am hoping! According to the Disney Parks Blog, this is the largest installation of projection mapping technology in a Disney park ever. This allows the buildings in the park to be come a canvas. From what I was able to see on a friend's video - the entire effect is gorgeous - filling the sky and the spaces below with beautiful images from classic Disney films. Best part? Two original songs, the theme “Live the Magic” and closing song “Kiss Goodnight,” were both written by Richard Sherman.
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  • New parade: “Paint the Night”  is a parade that comes to life with 1.5 million LED lights. The parade feature music, special effects and electric costumes - thanks to Mickey's vivid imagination. Also featuring characters and floats from “Monsters, Inc.,” “Cars,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Toy Story,” “Frozen” and more, the parade should be really fun - and some area hoping - even better than the Main Street Electrical Parade. If you can't wait to see it, check out this video from Hong Kong Disneyland's Paint the Night Parade:
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  • New, special edition, World of Color show: Walt taught us all that if we can dream it, we can do it. “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” promises to celebrate Walt and his dream of Disneyland. With Mickey as our guide, the magical World of Color screens will show us classic animation and tell the story of Walt and Disneyland. I'm looking forward to seeing all my favorites presented. If this is done well, and gosh I hope it is, this could be really epic. World of Color shows are always moving - so I am looking forward to this the most.
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It looks like a true effort is being made to celebrate Walt Disney and his vision during #Disneyland60! I hope to see so many classics celebrated along with images and clips of Walt as he built Disneyland and brought to life those early films we all love. The Tiki Room Gods are happy.

Disneyland is the star, everything else is in the supporting role.
— Walt Disney

There are still so many announcements remaining with regard to #Disneyland60. You can count on new merchandise and food during the celebration in addition to many more surprises. Stay tuned as we keep you posted!

California Love: Running Solo for the Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Cali Combo

When I run into people I haven't seen in a while, they always say the same thing, "Wow, you ran a lot last year. And you're still running!". It's true. I ran over 20 races last year, and admittedly lost count along the way. What people don't realize, however, are the sacrifices I made, the goals I set and the personal milestones I reached along the way. And that was just for the Cali Combo!

As many of you may recall, I ran all over California last year in my quest for the Cali Combo medal. I even ran the Remix Challenge in San Jose - just for added fun! Check out the recaps below:

The reward for running these races was not just the gorgeous, heavy duty Cali Combo medal I coveted, but more importantly, the true sense of satisfaction for setting a goal and chasing after it. Literally.

It was not easy. As a working mother, with sometimes more than one job, the challenge wasn't just about the physical miles. It was about commitment, health, fitness, training, tenacity, balance and setting an example. I ran each of these races alone. I traveled to each city alone. I sometimes did not sleep for days leading into these races because I wanted to be sure everything at home was 200% perfect before stepping foot out of my house. Yes, even for the San Jose races 15 minutes from my doorstep. My family always comes first.

When my daughter was little, it was easy to take her on trips with me. As an employed teenager, athlete and senior honor student in high school - it's now impossible. And of course, NoTwitterTodd travels for work, so our schedules just don't jive when it comes to running. And they are perfectly fine with that. While traveling without my daughter was terrible in terms of the guilt I constantly felt for not having her by my side, the text messages she and NoTwitterTodd would send me on race mornings asking if I won made it better.

I know many women often ask the question: what is it like to run alone. The answer? Honestly? Fabulous! During my trip to San Diego I visited Bali Hai, enjoyed great meals and played in the Gas Lamp Quarter. I exercised when I wanted, I ate and slept when I wanted. I took my time sightseeing and never answered to anyone or had to adjust my schedule to fit anyone's needs. For my LA race, I actually drove down 2 days early and went to Disneyland where I enjoyed their Halloween Party. The next day I had fun in Hollywood and saw The Nightmare Before Christmas in 4D at the El Capitan. Both times, my hotel accommodations were perfect - a king sized bed all to myself. I used Hilton Honors points for rooms and Southwest Airlines cheap flights for my travel to San Diego. Yes, these trips would have been just as fun with friends, but running solo is something I enjoy. I like being alone, independence is my thing, and this is the only time I get be alone. (Although "alone" does not mean "free from any of my responsibilities or problems", trust me.)

Bottom line: if you're thinking about running alone - do it. If you're thinking about earning the Cali Combo solo or with friends - go for it! Run the miles. Earn the bling. Drink the beer/mimosas. 

Many thanks to my beautiful family and the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon team for supporting me along the way. Special thanks to my runner friend Kristin for introducing me to the team! I met so many wonderful runners in these different cities, and enjoyed lots of time sightseeing. I can't wait to see what 2015 has in store for us!

Please enjoy this video I made, which celebrates my journey to earn the Cali Combo in 2014.

My journey from Northern California to Southern California to earn that Rock 'n' Roll Cali Combo bling!

P.S. I'm happy to announce that I am once again a member of the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon's Rock 'n' Blog Team! This means I get the opportunity to run these amazing courses all over the country while also offering my friends a $15 registration discount! Just use code "FLOWERSCROON" (all caps!) for any half or full Rock 'n' Roll marathon race your heart desires. There are plenty to choose from!

Rock 'n' Blog 2015 Team

Rock 'n' Blog 2015 Team

runDisney Star Wars Rebel Challenge Finisher's Medal and Shirt

I know a lot of Star Wars fans who did not participate in the runDisney races last weekend have been very curious about the Rebel Challenge finisher's medal and shirt. Below are photos of the shirt with the medal. The spinner has been flipped in each photo so you can see Darth Vader in the top photo and Yoda in the bottom photo.

Rebel Challenge Medal Vader

Rebel Challenge Medal Vader

Rebel Challenge Medal Yoda

Rebel Challenge Medal Yoda

The shirt is a long-sleeved Champion tech shirt, fitted appropriately by gender. I LOVE the shirts we received as part of our race registrations. I will actually wear these quite often - especially this one.

runDisney Star Wars 5K Race Recap

The morning after the Wookiee Welcome Party, my friend Christine and I woke up bright and early for the inaugural runDisney Star Wars 5K. We stayed at our usual hotel, the Alpine Inn, which allows us to sleep in quite a bit since it's just around the corner from the start line.

My X-Wing pilot costume for the 5K was cheap and easy to make. Below is quick how-to:

  1. I took my pre-existing Champion orange performance tee and paired it with my Sparkle Athletic orange skirt.
  2. I went into the garage, and from my need-to-drop-off-at-Goodwill pile, grabbed an old white tank top.
  3. I cut the tank top in half to make the flak vest, and very roughly sewed a seam around the edge so it wouldn't fray.
  4. I used the silver fabric I bought to make my own sparkle skirt as the background for the chest box. The nobs were made with more silver and blue sparkle fabric against a black background - also made from a t-shirt that was going to Goodwill. With a glue gun, scissors and a bit of patience - the chest box was completed. I only stitched the edges of it directly onto the tank.
  5. I used olive ribbon to make the ties. I sewed the ribbon under the chest box - but NOT onto the tank top.
  6. The vest and chest box slipped over my orange shirt for the race, and slipped right off after the race.
Star Wars X-Wing Pilot Costume

Star Wars X-Wing Pilot Costume

I met my friend Emelia, from HalfCrazyMama, at the start line and fell in love with her costume! She took the plastic Vader helmet available at the Disneyland Resort, and added a Minnie Mouse bow to it that was simply brilliant!

Emelia's costumes are always fab 

Emelia's costumes are always fab 

The pre-race events included a special message from my favorite Droids!

My heart belongs to R2

My heart belongs to R2

Soon we were off and running through backstage Disneyland and into Fantasyland via it's a small world. I loved seeing the Christmas lights still up!

You can't see all the lights...but you can see enough

You can't see all the lights...but you can see enough

Although not technically a photo stop, Emelia and I stopped for photos with Storm Troopers just in front of it's a small world.

Pew Pew!

Pew Pew!

We continued to run together - which was awesome for me! I was really happy to be spending time with Emelia on course. That's never really been something I've done with anyone during a runDisney race because I am so self-conscious about my slow pace. I was really happy she stuck with me, and it was great to have someone to take photos with along the way!

Castle shot!

Castle shot!

We passed the castle and headed towards Tomorrowland, where of course the Dark Side was on duty.

Darth and his boys

Darth and his boys

We then ran into Disney California Adventure where the Star Wars Rebels characters made their race debut.

Sabine and Ezra

Sabine and Ezra

After leaving California Adventure, I ran through Downtown Disney and straight to the finish line where the Dark Side awaited.

Those pants just aren't stretchy enough

Those pants just aren't stretchy enough

The inaugural runDisney Star Wars 5K was a blast and I am really glad I registered for this race in addition to the Rebel Challenge. However, I must point out that I encountered a large number of what appeared to be children under the age of 3 as well as parents with strollers on the course. For that reason, this may be the last time I run a runDisney 5K. I don't think tiny toddlers and strollers belong on dark, crowded courses. I'd hate to be the grown-up remembered for tripping over a baby, so unless something changes within runDisney and their policy with regard to strollers and toddlers - I might be finished with the 5K distance. I'm thankful I was able to be a finisher of this inaugural race, and I DO recommend the race in the future baed on the course and characters.

Inaugural Star Wars 5K Finisher!

Inaugural Star Wars 5K Finisher!

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Next up: My Star Wars 10K and Star Wars Half Marathon recaps. Stay tuned!