Disneyland Part 1: LA Sun & Star Wars Expo Fun

Who can complain when they are fleeing 20 degree weather in Boston for 70 degree weather in Los Angeles? Don't worry - it's not this girl!

The wife and I were psyched to be heading to Disneyland for the first time for the inaugural Star Wars race weekend (January 15-19).

Thankfully my mom was able to drop us off at Logan Airport to save time and money right off the top of the trip. Woo!

We took a direct American Airlines flight to LA. While a direct flight is nice, it is tough to be trapped on a plane for six hours. I tried to get up and walk as much as possible, but I still felt pain in my back.

Once landed at LAX, we took the Super Shuttle to our hotel (Alpine Inn) down in Anaheim. Now I can definitely tell you the Super Shuttle is NOTHING compared to the Magical Express. Haha. If you didn't guess that already. :P

The Super Shuttle roundtrip for both the wife & I came to $76 - the most cost-effective way we found to take the hour trek from LA to Anaheim.

We were the final couple to be dropped off and I was ITCHING to get out and walk!!


Hello palm trees!


We made a quick pit stop in the room to drop our stuff and make sure we had our Run Disney race waivers... and then we were off!!

I was on East Coast time and ready to eat my arm off. Yes I didn't bring enough snacks. #RookieMistake

As we took the first right around our block, BAM! There were the Disneyland hotels. I knew we were close, but didn't know it was THAT close. Score!


This would definitely come in handy on race days!

As we continued past the hotels making our way to Downtown Disney I spotted my first race sign.


Oohhh I was getting sooo excited.

After geeking out it was time to grab a quick sandwich and beer at La Brea Bakery. I highly recommend the BLT - delish. It was humorous I went all that way for a local beer and ended up drinking a Sam Adams (out of Boston) Rebel IPA. I thought the Rebel in the name at least went with the weekend's theme.


Now it was at the airport on this day that the black eye from a previous fall started showing its true colors - if you will. Dammit! The black and white filter on Instagram hid it nicely though. :)

Once we were properly fed and hydrated, it was time to make our way to the Expo.

But first we were stopped by AJ and Ivie and got to chat with them. We had only met online previously so it was nice to finally put a "bigger than your IG pic" face to a name.

I loooove a good Expo and was excited to hopefully spot some more familiar faces.


The Expo was held at the Disneyland Hotel. If we head back to Disneyland, I would love to spend a night there. It looked amazing.

We made our way straight to bib pick-up before doing to the merch/expo area. I had heard there was plenty of official merch there so I didn't feel we had to rush.

During bib pick-up I was able to meet a blog reader Liz and her husband. Liz's husband was in my corral and bought tickets from the same travel group so it was like I was following them around the bib pick-up area. Ummm hi! ;)

Once bibs were secured for both the wife and I, we headed to merch!

BUT first we got to walk through a very cool red black carpet welcome.



So cool and different.





The Star Wars weekend would be the first race in our quest for our first Coast To Coast medal.


We will collect the C2C medal during Run Disney's Princess weekend in Disney World in February. Woo!

Once inside we made our way to pick up our shirts. I would be walking away with 4 thanks to the 5k, 10k, Half Marathon and Rebel Challenge. :) The Men's Medium however were too big so I went to exchange. They didn't have any Men's Small so I had to go to the scary side of trying on the more fitting women's shirt. Somehow I fit into the Women's Medium! Ahhh hello Non-Scale Victory! :)

Then it was time for the official merch area and found out that the Inaugural 19.3 Star Wars jacket I spotted someone wearing at Downtown Disney sold out first. Gahhhh of course. Oh well that's okay. I got myself an "I Did It!" shirt and a magnet. The wife got herself a Star Wars weekend sweatshirt. I'm glad they didn't have more I was interested in since I had spent too much money on Dopey Challenge gear last year. ;)

There are a few booths I will stop by at every Expo. First one? Sparkly Soul headbands of course.


I was eager to check out the Star Wars specific "May The Sparkle Be With You" headband, but they hadn't arrived yet. Oof! That was okay. I was happy to pick one up the following day when they arrived. The Expo was smaller than the one at Disney World so it would be easy to pop back over.

I also stopped by the Sparkle Athletic booth, but didn't spot Kelly to say hi. So I was off to KT Tape to pick up the Minnie Mouse tape that you can only get at a Run Disney expo. Priorities, right? :)


After stopping by some other booths, it was time to hit up the Run Disney Instagram booth to get our photo on!


I had to pick the dark side since the wife would pick the light side!


Yes the black eye also led to me picking the dark side.

As we were heading out of the Expo, I heard a familiar voice over the Expo speakers and saw the amazing Carissa in front of me. Carissa is an awesome blogger and Run Disney announcer. It is always a pleasure to see her and her little baby bump.


She even let me pretend to be a Run Disney announcer. Of course the volume was off. :P


I was channeling my past career as a journalist. Do I look like I am listening?

It was finally time to head back to the hotel and come up with our game plan for the following day's 5k race.

Oh but first a photo!


Thankfully there was a CVS on the way back to the hotel so we could get a 24-pack of bottled water for the hotel room. Hydration being my #1 concern with the adjustment from Boston winter to LA winter.

But the warmth was also going to play a part in my running so I wanted to get out and do a quick run before we headed to dinner.


It was amazing to run in a tank top. While the pace looked normal for me, I was dripping in sweat. Hello heat.

After freshening up and laying out my costume for the following morning, it was time to make our way back to Downtown Disney where we had a reservation at Naples Ristorante e Pizzeria.


I had the individual pizza with Red Wine while the wife opted for ravioli with Sangria. She loved her dish, while I was okay with mine. It just didn't hit the spot for me. The meal seemed a bit overpriced for what I had.

It was super easy to land a reservation at the Disneyland establishments on the Disney Experience app within a week of the race. We were a little behind schedule. Oops!

Don't worry everyone all of our Disney World dinners were booked awhile back. ;)

Since we didn't have a park pass for that night, we opted to head back to the hotel and crash early. I was totally on East Coast time.

Plus, I needed to make sure we knew exactly where to go for the next morning's 5k. The wife wasn't running in the 5k, but was going to come watch since the race started at 5:30am - which would be 8:30am East Coast time. :)


Next up: Star Wars 5k!