The Casual Runner

CR Mailbag (June)

Wow! Did you see that?

It seems like June just started, and now, in the blink of an eye, its over. Summer is just flying by and we hope that you are enjoying it. Whether it is logging some great training miles in nice weather, running a summer race or two, riding the latest mega roller coaster, or travelling on summer vacation to a fun destination, we hope you are making awesome memories and enjoying great adventures.

We heard from many readers again this month, so lets get right to it and open up the Casual Runner Mailbag!

runDisney Race Registration & Planning

Abby reached out to us via our Facebook Page:

“Hello! I am planning on registering for the Disney Princess 10K on July 12th. I read your blog post about Disney race registration. On registration day, should I go to the runDisney website to get the registration link or log into directly. I don’t want to waste time-I missed out on the Marathon Weekend Any advice is appreciated!”


Hi Abby! We are sorry to hear that you did not get into runDisney’s Marathon Weekend, we assume you were trying for the Minnie Mouse 10k? Unfortunately, while there have been changes to the levels of demand as some races and challenges that previously sold out quickly are taking longer (as of the publication of this article, the 2017 Dopey Challenge is still available whereas in past years it sold out in mere hours), the 10ks do seem to be the most-in demand runDisney races these days.

You are correct, regular registration for the 2017 Princess Half Marathon Weekend opens on July 12th at noon Eastern time. We recommend being signed into your account any time before noon, and then going directly to the runDisney website (specifically the Princess registration page). You can start hitting “refresh” 1-2 minutes before 12 noon. It is usually easier to find the links on the runDisney page than it is to search on Active’s site (as an aside, we have found the search function on to be unreliable, particularly when it comes to runDisney events).

Blog-2014-00008 Mike - 2013 Princess Review Part 2 Pic M

We hope this helps, but please let us know if you have any other questions.

Also, you can all feel free to check out Jennifer’s great tips for registering for runDisney races and all of our extensive coverage of runDisney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend.

Good luck!

Inspiration is Contagious

Recently, one of our readers, Tracy, shared her First Mile story with everyone, and the response was huge. This article seemed to be of particular interest to our readers, reinforcing the idea that inspiring others to believe in themselves and achieve greatness is contagious.


Jason passed along his thanks:

“I love reading these stories! Maybe, just maybe I’ll get around to writing mine. Thanks for sharing Tracy!”

Thanks Jason, and please do! We’d love to hear your story! And that goes for any of our readers. We all have inspirational stories to share from our own Casual Running Adventures. if you want to share yours, please let us know, we’d love to work with you.

Great Adventures at Cedar Point Race Weekends

Mike and Candace traveled to the shores of Lake Erie to take on the 2016 Run and Ride Cedar Point race weekend, where they joined Snoopy and the Peanuts Gang in running the 5k and half marathon events.

Stacy had this to say about the 5k:

“I love hearing your take on races I’ve run. Since I run so few in comparison to you guys I really value your opinion and like to see how our thoughts differ. I enjoyed this 5k as well (even though we didn’t “run” it). The race includes the best two miles that the half offers so why not run it? I also had thought of trying for the 1 mile medal but with the half the next morning I wasn’t pushing myself that hard on Saturday. Good thing I didn’t because a 25 minute 5k would be impossible for me. I am disappointed that a 1 mile option isn’t available for Kings Island or I would be on board with that. I want the Snoopy medal!! My two biggest complaints would be the line for the post-race snacks was insane and I wish the medal ribbons were park specific like last year. But overall a super fun time! Can’t believe I missed you guys again!”

IMG_0001Thanks for all of the great insight and support, you are too kind and you make some excellent points. Candace is right there with you with wanting to collect a full set of medals. We understand the race directors have to juggle logistical concerns in packing so many races into a weekend, but those medals are just so tempting!

Here is what Stacy had to say about the half marathon:

Such a tease with the comment regarding the race director talk! I love this race weekend…maybe because it was my first half last year and now my first repeat half this year BUT I REALLY, REALLY want to see them alter the course to include more park time (or even soak city, hotel breakers, something) and less time in Sandusky. If these changes don’t happen I *might* only run the 10k and save my half medal for Kings Island since even with the intense hills I enjoyed that course far more. Overall glad you had another successful weekend! Thanks for the review!”

Sorry we cannot share more at this time, but that is why they call it a tease! Congratulations on successfully completing your second half marathon, what a great event in which to do it. We will definitely make sure to pass your comments along to the race directors. They are great at taking runner feedback into account, which is a big reason why these events continue to get better every year, Run and Ride really does put the runners first. Thanks again for everything, we hope to see you at Kings Island and future races!


For those readers who want to learn more about he upcoming Kings Island events, you can check out our reviews of the 2015 Glow Run 5k and the Kings Island Half Marathon.

Great Adventures at Great Wolf Lodge

In our Casual Adventurer Series, Mike shared his reviews of staying and playing at the Great Wolf Lodge chain of resorts and indoor water parks.

Krista wrote in to ask us some advice:

“Nice review Mike! What age kids would like this? Chris thinks Nate is too young. But Ryan (that is Ryan in the picture?) looks much younger than Nate…”


Thanks Krista! Yes, that is Ryan, one of Mike’s absolutely adorable nephews in the picture. We took him to celebrate his second birthday, and we all had a great time, especially Ryan. He was able to enjoy the kids slides, splash pads, wave pool, and even some of the family slides (with adult supervision and accompaniment). The resort provided life jackets for kids of all ages, but we brought our own as his is nicer and more comfortable. Once kids are mobile (walking around comfortably, not crawling) and comfortable in the water, they are probably at a good age. He was also young enough to appreciate the costumed characters and story time entertainment, which, unlike Disney, definitely do have an age ceiling after which they will no longer appeal to kids. So those aspects do skew a bit younger.

After that, there is certainly enough entertainment to keep kids of most ages, pre-teens, and teens occupied, however, keep in mind, for the budget conscience traveler, these add-ons do add up and can get quite pricey quickly.


One last Congratulations Before We Go…

Nick is telling us that we are running long and that we need to wrap it up. We have so many more reader comments and questions to get to, but they will have to wait for the next installment of the Casual Runner Mailbag.

But, before we go, we have one special note to add.

June was a momentous month for one of the members of Team Casual Runner. Nick, and his wife Brit, two of the greatest people you will ever meet, celebrated the birth of their beautiful daughter, Olivia Camille. Mom and baby are doing great, and rumor has it that she is already winning age group awards in diaper dashes, so watch out!

You can read more about Olivia over at Bottles & Banters, and please join the entire Casual Runner Team and Casual Runners everywhere in sharing our most sincere congratulations and best wishes to the new dad, mom, and baby Casual Runner! With parents like Nick and Brit, we expect great things from her in the future!

Click here to check out past editions of the Casual Runner Mailbag.

Well, that is going to do it for our latest installment of the Casual Runner Mailbag. If we did not get to your messages this month, don’t worry, we will be back next month with another edition of the Casual Runner Mailbag.

If you want to reach out to us, have any questions to ask, or just want to say hi to us, the free plug party at the end of this and every article will tell you how to do so! Thanks again everyone, and best of luck to you on your Casual Running adventures, we will see you out on the running trails.

The Casual Runner Team wants to hear from you. If you have any questions about anything we cover here on Casual Runner, if you have any questions regarding running gear or training for your own Casual Running needs, or if there is anything that you would like us to cover on Casual Runner, please leave a comment or email us using the links below.  To ensure that you do not miss all of the great content from Casual Runner, please be sure to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram, subscribe to our YouTube channel, and add us to your circle on Google+.