The Happiest Place Magical Medals, Tips, & Tweets!- My Pretty Brown Blog

The Happiest Place Magical Medals, Training Tips, & Tweets!

The Happiest Place Magical Medals, Tips, & Tweets!- My Pretty Brown Blog

The Disneyland Half Marathon 10th Anniversary Weekend is less than three weeks away! I cannot wait to see all of my runDisney friends and earn my Coast to Coast Race Challenge bling! I will be running the Disneyland 10K and the Disneyland Half Marathon all part of the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge. Plus, it’s Disneyland’s 60th Anniversary! This will be my third Run Disney race and first Run Disney challenge–and just in case you haven’t seen the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge medals…here they are!

dumbodoubledare medals 1

I love these beauties! I can’t wait to see them in person.


Cigna, the sponsor of the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend held a Twitter Chat with  runDisney and Jeff Galloway, runDisney’s official training consultant, to share training tips. There were so many great tips shared by Cigna, runDisney, Jeff Galloway, and other runners/walkers— I thought I would share a few tweets from the #CignaRunTogetherChat!


Magical Tips and Tweets!

 And finally…



You can find more training tips from Jeff Galloway Feel free to add a training tip below.

See you real soon!


Art Runs Disney Race Recaps

Princess Half Marathon 2014

Walt Disney World Marathon 2015




Jeff Galloway Summer Running Tips - My Pretty Brown Blog

Summer Running Tips from Jeff Galloway

Hi friends!

I just received NEW Galloway Blogger summer running tips from Jeff Galloway to share with you all! It has been so hot here in the South. *soul cry* I was so excited to get past winter that I forgot how hot summer can get. Let me just be honest, fall is the only season that does not come to me with baggage. We just belong together! We’re like Mike and Ike (yes, they are back together)…Bey and Jay-Z…Bebops/freeze cups and summertime. Back to this heat. This summer has come with a few challenges, including  having no other option but to use the treadmill (dreadmill). Well, I’m excited to share these summer running tips with you!

Jeff Galloway Summer Running Tips - My Pretty Brown Blog


Dealing With the Heat | Jeff Galloway tips

Training through the summer can not only be grueling, but down right dangerous.  Here are some tips to train safely and as comfortable as possible in the hot summer months.

  • Slow down by 30 sec/mile (20 sec/km) for every 5F temperature increase above 55-60F ( every 2.5C above 14C).
  • When the temperature is over 70F (21C) you may take a 5 minute “cold shower break” every 25-30 minutes to keep cool.
  • Try to complete your run before the sun rises above the horizon.
  • More frequent walk breaks during hot weather can lower body temperature increase.  If you used to run 3 minutes between walk breaks, run only 90 seconds (walk 30 seconds) at 70F (21C) and at 80F (26C) drop to 60 sec run/30 sec walk or 30/30.
  • When you start to heat up more than normal, take a longer walk in a mall or indoor AC building.
  • Pick shady courses on hot days.
  • Don’t wear a hat!  Pour water over your head.
  • Have an indoor alternative—treadmill, etc.
  • Run in the deep end of the pool, using a flotation belt.



jeffgallowaysummerrunning 1ANOTHER AMAZING LAKE TAHOE RETREAT!

We stay at the beautiful and comfortable Squaw Valley Lodge. Lodge amenities include indoor and outdoor hot tubs, swimming, tennis, sauna and fitness room. Week camp began Thursday, July 23th.  Weekend camp began Friday, July 24th at 5PM. Both camps began with an easy run to get acquainted.  The morning breakfasts were followed by clinics by Jeff and his guests. Seminar topics include Running Injury Free, Nutrition, Speed work, Goal setting, Shoe selection, Pool running, and Running form / analysis.

After lunch, our guests shopped, went sightseeing, sunned by the pool, or joined the group for a scenic hike, T-shirt swap, bike ride, river raft ride, etc. The group gathered again in the evenings for dinner onsite or at one of the nearby restaurants and after-dinner relaxing.

You can learn more about the various Jeff Galloway Retreats at




Make your nomination today!

In conjunction with the Road Race Management Race Directors’ Meeting, Road Race Management and MarathonFoto will again honor an individual who has made a major difference in the sport with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

The award is for contributions to the sport of long distance running over the course of a lifetime. Nominees, who may be either living or deceased, should have made major contributions to the sport in more than one area, for example as an administrator, elite athlete, promoter of the sport, or innovator as an event director or vendor.

“We are seeking to honor a ‘sport changer’…a person who really made a difference,” says Phil Stewart, RRM editor and publisher.

Nominations from the public are being solicited and will close on August 31, 2015.

A ten-person committee will choose the winner to be announced November 6 at the Race Race Management Race Directors’ Keynote dinner in Hollywood, FL.

Make your nomination now!


You can read the previous installments of my Jeff Galloway Blogger Tips here. For more great tips from Jeff Galloway, you can find him on Facebook and Twitter!

Happy running and stay hydrated!

Motion 2015

Weekend Vibes! Art in Motion

I knew that the last weekend in July was going to be crazy busy. Birmingham had so many events going on including the annual Schaeffer City Fest (featuring The Roots, Common, and Birmingham’s own–Taylor Hicks), Secret Stages, Jill Scott concert and two events that I would be attending: Motion Student Conference 2015 and the Bloganista Mini-Con hosted by See Jane Write Birmingham. I had to make sure I stayed on schedule with my workouts/marathon training runs to prepare for the weekend ahead. I decided to hit the trail for a peaceful, 5 mile run Thursday morning before my training.

Weekend Vibes

I had the opportunity to serve/volunteer at Motion 2015. It was such a great experience! “MOTION Student Conference is a catalyst weekend for students to be empowered by Jesus to put their faith into MOTION.” The conference welcomed over 10,000 students from all over the nation as they packed out the BJCC – Legacy Arena for the 3-day event! Motion 2015

Guest speakers included: Robert Madu, Christine Caine, Rich Wilkerson Jr., DawnChere Wilkerson, Josh Kimes, Chris Hodges (Founding and Senior Pastor of Church of the Highlands–conference host), and Mark (Jill) Pettus (Youth Pastor of Church of the Highlands). Worship included: Hillsong United, Lecrae, Passion Band, and Highlands Worship. After viewing the schedule, I knew there would be lots of walking, standing…and excitement! It was so amazing to see a generation of students ready to go out into the world to make a difference! I loved being in the midst of all of the awesomeness that was taking place! Motion 2015

Rich Wilkerson Jr. was the opening session for Day 1. After his session, the after-party kicked off with musical genius, Lecrae! I love Lecrae’s authenticity as he shares about his journey through Faith! He has truly redefined our pop culture. If you don’t know who he is…Google him! During the after party, Lecrae grabbed the camera/selfie stick from one of the students in the crowd and started filming. The crowd loved it! Fun times.


Day 2 sessions were all day long. Standing for long periods of time can put a lot of strain on your body, especially standing on hard surfaces like concrete. Luckily, we had a team that relieved us around lunchtime. It was so beautiful outside, so my teammate Courtney and I decided to head out to soak up some sunshine! I also ran into one of my sweet friends and fellow Disney Princess, Princess Leigh, (right) who is also part of the Dream Team. Gotta love the photobomb from one of the students in the background! Hilarious! Serving on the Dream Team is truly one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. An added bonus–working with the most amazing people/team on the planet!


Christine Caine was part of the evening session on Day 2. Christine is the founder of the A21 Campaign (an anti-human trafficking organization). I love how passionate she is about people and justice. I feel that she is a voice for this generation. For the after-party Hillsong United, one of my favorite bands, performed! I sang and danced my heart out! AH-MAZING!

Hillsong United - My Pretty Brown Blog

Hillsong United

 This is Living by Hillsong (United/Young & Free)

I could not believe my eyes when I looked at my FitStats for both days! 27,000 steps! Holy Fitbit, Batman! I almost walked a half marathon on Thursday! Well, I did run a 5-miler that morning that helped add to my stats. Friday was my rest day, but I still almost reached 10 miles while at the conference. I felt pretty good about my stats even though my body totally felt it. Owie! I don’t like to make excuses when it comes to getting in my activity–especially during marathon training season. I must keep moving! wpid-photogrid_1438622671536.jpgOn Saturday, I attended my first blogging conference ever! I’ll share all about it soon. All in all, it was an amazing weekend and I would do it all over again!

How did you end July? Did you reach your July goal(s)?




2015 Run the Bluegrass Half Marathon Recap!

 Run the Bluegrass was truly an EXPERIENCE! It was held March 28, 2015 in beautiful Lexington, Kentucky. My HB signed us both up for this race–more so of a surprise to me. I’ll admit…I smiled when I received the confirmation in my inbox. The HB is a “Bling Chaser” (i.e., he runs for the shine, not the time–yes, that’s his mantra). When he saw the finishers’ medal then found out that Run the Bluegrass was part of the Kentucky Half Classic (Challenge), he was all in! Finishers of both Run the Bluegrass and the Kentucky Derby miniMarathon would receive the challenge medal. Recap coming soon. I was still somewhat on my hiatus after the Walt Disney World Marathon, but I decided to go for it. Little did I know, I was in for a BIG surprise. 

The Expo!

I always look forward to the Expo to purchase items I really don’t need. Our first stop was the Woodford Reserve Bourbon vendor. While he checked out the cool drinking glasses and such…I went to look for the hoodies they had at the expo from their online store. But guess what? SOLD OUT! I was happy to find out we were getting hoodies as part of our race  packet (swag).

Run The Bluegrass 2015

Someone is uber excited!


Run The Bluegrass

Trying to decide between the red and gray hoodie. It really shouldn’t be this hard.

I made my way around the Expo then stopped at the Navy 10 Nautical Miler booth. I was pretty impressed with the medal! They also help support the Fisher House Foundation by raising funds and awareness to help military families through Team Fisher House, the charity I will be running for in October. You can still donate here! Definitely adding this race to my list.


The first RTB medal (horseshoe) and the medals from over the years.


Race Day!

We were ready to go, but boy oh boy–the moment we stepped outside, we hauled tail to put on an extra layer. It was unseasonably cold for Run the Bluegrass. Past participants said the weather is usually perfect on race day, but it was in the low 20’s and I was not ready. I forgot to mention, the day before the race we saw snow flurries on the way to the hotel.

We headed on over to the group photo area for Half Fanatics. Excited that I ran into a few Half Fanatics (Heather and Dana) who were staying in our hotel. They are truly FANATIC! Not sure if I’ll make it to the Sun, but maybe one day. I also ran into a few ladies from Black Girls RUN! and fellow blogger and Team Turkey Stir Fry teammate, Karen of RunKnitTravel. We were on the same team for the Cigna Blogger Cook-off during Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend!



Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

Ghost Runner & Artie Cakes…Ready!



 And we’re off…

A hill at the start! Who does that? WE DO!!! Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

The wind was piercing! The HB was smart to wear a face “mask”. I’m definitely investing in a neck gaiter before next winter. We had to stop and soak in the beautiful scenery!

See the “horsies”?Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

Here’s a closer look! Whoaaa! Maybe a little too close…Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

….and there were more hills. Dear God, those endless rolling HILLS! They were ALIVE and THRIVING!

Pretty sure this was hill number 1,000, 024 and…025! Don’t debate me on this!Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

RTB Meg’s Mile (9-10) was in honor of Meg Cross Menzies. It was chosen because mile 9 was the unforgettable mile. I didn’t know Meg personally, but you can’t hear about a story like hers and not be affected. All of the shoes seen below were donated to the less fortunate. You can read more about Meg’s Miles here.Run The Bluegrass 2015 - My Pretty Brown

Mile 9 was truly unforgettable! Meg, may your memory live on!

We made it, but we ain’t done yet!Run the Bluegrass 2015

I really can’t explain these hills. It’s nothing like I’ve ever experienced before. I knew when my HB stopped to walk that it was getting serious. Being a faithful Galloway follower–my run-walk-run went all the way out the door (for most of the race). I became a walker and I’m not ashamed to walk during a race either. There was no “racing” this day. It was pure survival mode and determination to make it to the end.  And people say Birmingham is hilly. Whether you run the hills in Mercedes (Half) Marathon and/or Atlanta hills…they are a piece of cake compared to RTB. I couldn’t take pictures of all of them because I was too busy calling on Jesus! I heard there were 28-ish rolling hills. They were endless! These photos make them look “easy” to tackle, but I’m here to tell ya…they were brutal! So brutal…even Humpty felt the pain! Run the Bluegrass 2015

We’re almost there! THANK GOD!Run the Bluegrass 2015

*cue Destiny’s Child* —“I’m a Survivor!”

I was looking a HOT MESS. Like…an epic level of hotmessedness–so there’s only a pic of the HB after we finished! *chuckle* And for those who were wondering why my HB still has on his “mask”…he calls himself  “Ghost Runner” and he likes to keep his face covered. *shrug* 

Run The Bluegrass 2015

Run The Bluegrass 2015

But here’s my beautiful bling!

RTB took great care of us at the finish! This was truly the best post-race snack pack ever. It was filled with lots of goodies and that was in addition to the free pizza and beer! We also made our way to the VIP Experience tent and stayed for a little while, but we were spent and ready to get to our warm hotel, soak, and get in our jammies. #TEAMEPSOMSALTartb1   artrunb25


I’m excited that RTB was my HB’s qualifying race for Half Fanatics–completing 3 half marathons in 78 days! I must say–he EARNED IT! So proud! artb8


I do have my own thoughts on those mega mountains hills…but Run the Bluegrass was truly a great experience (even though I wanted to quit a few times)! It is probably one of the most beautiful half marathons (if not THE most beautiful) that I’ve ever ran to date. Although it was the absolute hardest half I’ve ever ran (and walked)…I thank GOD that I finished! It was so pretty and I loved seeing the horses–and because it is named America’s Prettiest Half Marathon, you must run/walk/crawl this race at least once–just please train on hills! It is such a beautiful course. This became #8 of my 10 half marathons completed (with more to come before the end of 2015).Run the Bluegrass - Race Medals

You can sign up for Run the Bluegrass 2016 here! I will not be running, but I plan to be there to cheer everyone on!  Also, I had a lot of inquiries about my chevron Bondi Band–which I love! You can shop chevron products here! I am an ambassador for  Bondi Band, but all opinions are my own.

Have you ever participated in Run the Bluegrass? If so, will you return again?





NEW Run/Walk Strategy from Jeff Galloway

I have used the Galloway method since I started distance running a few years ago. I used it while training for my second half marathon and absolutely loved it. Galloway Method is also known as Run Walk Run for those who are unfamiliar. The Run/Walk method would take your pace per mile and assign a specific run/walk ratio. I started with a 3:1 ratio (3 minute run, 1 minute walk) and even played around with 2:1 and 1:1. After talking to Jeff Galloway at the Princess Half marathon expo, he suggested that I try 30:30 (30 second run, 30 second walk or what I call 30-30’s). I did  make character stops at Disney, so I can’t share a PR story behind this ratio—but I did like how I felt. I also used 30-30’s during the early part of the Walt Disney World Marathon. I think by using them in the beginning, it helped me stay strong to the end to complete 26.2 miles!

Walt Disney World Marathon - My Pretty Brown Blog As a Jeff Galloway Blogger, I receive tips to share with my readers on ways to stay motivated and train for optimal performance. When I found out that Jeff Galloway introduced a NEW Run/Walk Strategy: The 30-second Walk Break, I was fascinated! I actually just started using 30 second walk breaks during training runs to get accustomed to taking shorter breaks. And then here comes Jeff Galloway and all of his running wisdom! This only confirmed that I was making the right decision. Below are details about the new Run/Walk strategy from Olympian Jeff Galloway!

Jeff Galloway Introduces New Run Walk Strategy - My Pretty Brown

Jeff Introduces a New Run/Walk Strategy 

The 30-second Walk Break


Jeff Galloway’s Run/Walk/Run method was revolutionary for three reasons:

1 Run/Walk/Runners felt better throughout the long run.

2 Run/Walk/Runners recovered faster and got injured less often.

3 Run/Walk/Runners went faster with the breaks than without.

Since his introduction of walk breaks in 1974, Jeff he has received feedback from hundreds of thousands of runners, allowing him to fine tune Run/Walk/Run to keep people feeling better, staying healthy, and running faster.

The greatest benefit of the walk break comes in the first 30 seconds. 

Our heart rates come down, the running muscles relax, we catch our breaths, and the fatigue melts away. After 30 seconds of walking, we tend to slow down.

Here is a typical example of what happens with a 1-minute walk break:

A run/walk/runner averaging 10-minute pace in a marathon using 3 min/1 min might walk at a 15-minute mile pace for the first part of the race.

As fatigue sets in, that walk gets slower, and by halfway, the runner may be walking at 18 min/mi. This means faster running is needed to stay on pace, which creates more fatigue at the end of each running segment, so the walk will get slower, and so goes the downward spiral at the end of the race.

Avoiding the Slow-down

Compared to running constantly, the 1-minute walk break still results in runners feeling better, staying healthier, and going faster, but it can get even better! Limiting walk breaks to 30 seconds, or in some cases even less, while cutting the run time accordingly, gives all the same benefits, with even less fatigue and even faster times.

 The Bottom Line

If you are in already using a 30-second walk break or less, you don’t need to adjust. If you are using an interval that takes a 1-minute walk break, keep the same ratio but cut your walk and run times in half. For example, a 1-minute/1-minute interval now becomes a 30-sec./30-sec. interval. It’s that simple.

In the past when I took walk breaks longer than 30 seconds, I did find that I slow my walking pace down…a lot! Taking shorter walk breaks keeps me in the game and focused. I’m grateful that I discovered the Run/Walk method because it has helped me achieve my goals and continue to set new ones! Also, did you know that Jeff Galloway and many others have qualified for Boston using his Run/Walk method? I may not desire to BQ (right now), but it’s great to know that walk breaks have been proven to work!

You can read the previous installments of my Jeff Galloway Blogger Motivation and Training Tips here. For more wisdom from Jeff, you can find him on Facebook and Twitter!



Jeff Galloway Introduces New Run Walk Strategy - My Pretty Brown Blog


America’s Best Places to Run enhances the running experience by offering access to very special running routes. This book gives a preview of the scenery with directions to the start and special instructions to enjoy the area.  In addition to the more than fifty trails and half dozen race venues reviewed in this book it also  includes tips on training for trail running, dealing with elevation, running uphill and downhill, terrain issues, endurance, and time-

Jeff Galloway Blogger Tips | My Pretty Brown BlogDon’t forget to register for the 2nd annual Jeff Galloway 13.1.  December 11-13, 2015 brings a fun-filled weekend with the 13.1 half marathon, Barb’s 5K and the new “Fit Kids” run.

Join us in all the weekend events including the Race Expo with exciting vendors and speakers, a festive holiday mood and surprises at the finish line!

Register now at Jeff Galloway 13.1

Copyright © 2015* Galloway Productions All rights reserved.


Do you use the Galloway Method? What do you think of the new 30 second walk breaks? If you do use the Run/Walk method, what ratio do you use?




MCM 40th - My Pretty Brown Blog

MCM 40: The Countdown + Training Smart

Training for the Marine Corps Marathon kicked off this past Monday! Woo-hoo! Nervous and excited much, Artney? Why yes, I am! I will be Running with the Marines in less than 125 days! Cue “Eye of the Tiger”! I have also been working on Shredding weight over the past month and I will continue to focus on my diet. I am definitely going into this training cycle a lot smarter. I will follow the Dumbo Double Dare training plan as much as I can, while ensuring that I cover the prescribed miles for the marathon.


Marathon Training

I am using Hal Higdon’s Novice 1: 18-week training plan while incorporating the Jeff Galloway Method into my training runs. I will be using the same plan that I used for Walt Disney World Marathon, but I will be adding cross and  strength training. You can view it here. I am considering signing up for Training Peaks online training to help me stay focused. I like that it syncs with Garmin Connect too. I’ll know before the week is out whether or not I will use Higdon’s Training Peaks online plan. Long runs will be on a Saturday or Sunday, depending on what’s going on or what races I have planned. I am extremely focused when it comes to getting in the mileage. Respect the distance! My HB is so hilarious…he always says, “I don’t run for time, I run for the shine!” and I feel the same way, but I do have personal goals for this race.

MCM40 - My Pretty Brown Blog

Cross Training/Strength Training

When you know better, you do better. I did not cross train or strength train for my first marathon. Even if it’s your first marathon–I highly recommend that you do. My goal for this marathon is to finish strong with a smile on my face and with gas still left in the tank. I will cross train three days and take full advantage of my rest day(s). Days and times subject to change.

Charity Running

For those who are just following me, I am running for charity for the first time ever! E-X-C-I-T-E-D! I always wanted to run for something greater than myself, so I am thrilled that I will be running as an ambassador for Team Fisher House!

Fisher House Foundation is a wonderful organization that supports our military families when they need it the most—during hospitalization for unexpected injury, disease or illness. Fisher House provides a home away from home for families of patients receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers. The homes provide free temporary lodging so military and veterans’ families can be close to their loved ones during a medical crisis. 

Team Fisher House for MCM - My Pretty Brown Blog

I’m not going to stop fundraising until September, so keep the donations coming! These sweet families would love and appreciate your support. You can visit my Team Fisher House for MCM Campaign page here:

Have you ever used Training Peaks?



Disneyland Dumbo Double Dare

RunDisney: Dumbo Double Dare Challenge Training…In Progress!

Dumbo Double Dare - My Pretty Brown Blog

Training for the Run Disney Disneyland Half Marathon 10th Anniversary Weekend started at the beginning of May! I may be two months in, but I couldn’t help but share the deets and the theme for the weekend! I’ll go from Coast to Coast to run the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge presented by Cigna. I’m so excited because this is my first Run Disney challenge! I’ll run the Disneyland 10K and the Disneyland Half Marathon consecutively. I’ll earn a medal for each race completed, the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge medal, and I’ll earn my Coast to Coast race challenge medal for running the Walt Disney World Marathon and DDD Challenge all in the same year! That’s four beautiful medals y’all! Run all the races…earn ALL THE BLING! Medals haven’t been revealed yet, but I know Disney will not disappoint! I will share them once they are revealed!

MPBB Dumbo Double Dare Training Plan - My Pretty Brown Blog

View unmodified version online here.

This is the training schedule adding cross training days. Now that MCM training is underway, my schedule will change to accommodate the mileage for marathon training.

In the meantime, I’ll be counting down the days until I see my Sissy and nephews—and I’ll be deciding which characters I’m going to dress up as for the Disneyland Half Marathon weekend. Yes, you MUST dress the part when you run Disney!

What races are you planning to run this fall?