Meet Melanie!

Hi! I’m Melanie. I am big sister to Amanda, and little sister to Christine. I live in Austin and have been running half marathons in Disney since 2011.


Top race moment: high-five from Mickey!

It took a lot of motivation from my sisters to start running. I started with a strong belief that I was not a runner and finishing a half marathon was not something I was capable of doing. I signed up for the 2011 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon with my sisters as my first race because I figured if I didn’t finish, I at least had a weekend in Disney World. At the starting line, I still did not know what to expect from myself.  I trained, but had yet to attempt the full half marathon distance. My sisters continued to try to convince me I was going to make it and to my surprise, they were right! I couldn’t believe it when I made it across the finish line and received my first medal. It felt like a miracle, and I’ve continued to run and improve ever since.

My first race

I love sewing race costumes and finding epic Disney merch. I am excited to share race costume tips, fashion finds, and general magical moments with each of you.

Here are some fun facts about me:

Favorite Disney Princess:
Tiana because she is a princess who still has career goals.

Favorite Mickey Shaped Food:
Cake pops. Mickey Cake Pops.

Favorite running jam:
If it’s not a Disney song, it’s “PUMP UP THE JAM.”

That’s all for now!

– Melanie


Introducing Amanda…

Hi everyone! My name is Amanda! After several years living in Washington, DC, I recently moved to beautiful Southern California. I’m lucky enough to have two amazing big sisters (Melanie and Christine) who run races with me multiple times a year. These mostly take place in Disney World or Disneyland because we LOVE magic and happiness. RunDisney has been a huge blessing in my life. These races help me stay active and healthy, but most importantly they make me feel closer to my sisters. Since we started doing runDisney races together several years ago, we see each other more often, we talk on the phone almost everyday, and we get to celebrate each other at every finish line.

I get to use these cool bright green drum sticks to teach POUND – a workout inspired by drumming. 🙂

Outside of my runDisney life, I’ve worked as a personal trainer and group fitness instructor for almost a decade. In 2017, I opened my own company called Soul Lift to help people improve their health, nutrition and fitness. I also teach classes like Barre, Zumba and POUND. A couple years ago, I was selected to be a Master Instructor for POUND, which means I get to travel all over the country training new instructors.

Since my main expertise is fitness (I’m getting better at crafts and costume making but Melanie and Christine are the real experts in that), I hope to offer as many tips as I can to help with race training and staying strong and healthy as a long distance runner! I hope we can all still be running races in Disney World when we’re in our 70s!!


Main benefit to having a childhood filled with gymnastics classes: adulthood handstands on the beach.

So what is it about running that keeps me signing up for races? I’ve been active my entire life. My childhood was filled with gymnastics competitions, figure skating competitions, cheerleading and just general hyperactivity. Then, I grew up, went to graduate school, studied a lot and stopped moving. I loved my graduate program, but during this time I became very unhealthy and fell into a deep depression. Unfortunately, my depression went untreated for a couple years and resulted in a suicide attempt.

That’s when I started running. I found that the only time I felt sane was when I was moving. I didn’t want to stop moving and I didn’t want to lose that feeling, so I ran 2 miles, then 3 miles, then 4 miles, then in 2011 I ran my first half marathon with my big sister Christine. For all of you who have completed a race, you don’t even need me to describe the feeling I had at that finish line. For those of you who haven’t, here it is: sheer bliss. I run because it makes me love to be alive. Getting to share that experience with my sisters is just the cherry on top of the cake.



The feeling you get at your first finish line.

Meet Christine!

Nice to meet you, Internet. Welcome to Runs in Tutus!

I’m Christine. I am a craft-lover, nerd, workaholic, wanna be ballerina (because tutus), and redhead. I am also big sister to fellow Runs in Tutus bloggers Melanie and Amanda.

You will notice I did not use the word “athlete” to describe myself. I started running in 2003 when a friend told me she was doing a marathon. I thought it sounded like fun, so I signed up too. My running experience prior to marathon training included the Presidential Fitness Challenge in elementary school.  After months of training, I finished 26.2 miles at the San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon. That race still remains on the list of my favorites because I crossed the finish line at that race in celebration of my first year of cancer survivorship!

Running got even more exciting when I did my first Disney Princess Half Marathon in 2011 because I discovered the joy of running in a tutu! Since then I have done multiple runDisney races every year. I just can’t get enough of the magic!

Tutus and Disney aren’t the only reasons I continue to run. Here are a few other reasons I love to run:

1. I like athletic clothing (especially the sparkly, pink kind)

2. Traveling to races makes me take time off of work

3. Running seems to help with my mood

4. I love crafting, and every race gives me an excuse to make a cute race mini book and race countdown

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for more craft tutorials, travel itineraries, and tutu tips!

– Christine