Wishing I was back in Disney...

I can seriously say that the DisneyWorld Half Marathon on Jan. 11, 2014, was the best running event I have ever been to.

The one that used to be my favourite was the Nike Woman's Marathon in 2011, but their event in Oct. 2013 tarnished that (will do a race recap sometime and explain further).  I will say the only good thing about the Nike event in 2013 is that I did it with Team in Training, the Tiffany finisher necklace, and I actually managed to get the Tiffany Blue Nike Runners (seen in pic).

Now even though I did not manage to get the Disney New Balance Cinderella runners at the DWM expo, that did not even come close to tarnishing such an amazing event.  It was truly such a magical experience that I would like to experience again, and again.  I am hooked.

My teenage son ended up coming with me on my trip and since this was a very quick trip (fly in Thurs. night, and fly home Sun. afternoon) we had to do some advanced planning of exactly what we really wanted to see in two of the Disney Parks, and what we wanted to see at Universal.  It was a compacted tour of everything that we wanted to experience and see, but we did it, right down to enjoying a Dole Whip cup and float, a Turkey Leg, and at Universal some frozen and cold Butterbeer in the Harry Potter area.

Now, I must admit, going to Disney wasn't really one of the things that was on the top of my to do list in life because it always seemed out of reach.  As I got older, the more I wanted to experience going to Disney.  So when I saw an email from a running event tour provider after my last Nike event, I talked to my hubby and went for it.  Combining two loves of running and Disney? Definitely! Seriously the best decision ever as everything was so perfect, minus the whole Cinderella runners thing because I was a newbe to the whole event and did not know the process in how to get them.  Next time I will be prepared.

We stayed at the Disney Resort: Port Orleans - The French Quarter and loved it.  We were set up with Magic Bands and to me, these were the cat's meow.  Loved the convenience of them.

All transportation was taken care of like the airport transfers by Disney Magical Express, all park transportation and event transportation by the Disney buses.  A real turn key event vacation.

The whole time my son and I were at DisneyWorld, I was giddy and had a huge smile on my face.  Even every single picture taken of me during the half marathon, I had a smile on my face.  I did not stop once for any photo opportunities with the characters as the lines were huge and figured I would come back for sure and do some then. ;)  The weather that day on the Saturday was so humid and hot! I was drenched.  Coming from -40C to +30C was a factor for sure.  I was jealous of everyone running the full marathon on the Sunday because the weather was so much nicer.

My half marathon outfit:  green sparkle skirt and tierra from SparkleSkirts, mint green calf sleeves, sleeveless running shirt from One More Mile (I think that is what they were called), my running short tights, my Nike+ Sports Watch, iphone armband and iphone, my Fitbit (loved gaining all those steps that day), and glow in the dark Mickey ears.  Almost everything that I wore clothing wise was acquired from the event expo.  I really wanted a sparkle skirt... and then it went on from there. ;)

I used the Lolo half-marathon training program by Jeff Galloway for this race as best as I could and had the app going on race day set for 30 sec run/45 sec walk (adjusted for heat), but, something happened and the app quit working on me 1/4 way in to the race. So, I counted in my head the best I could the rest of the race.  Since I am going to try the Galloway program again, I bought the Galloway Gymboss interval timer to use.  So far, so good and will do a product review sometime. Edit: I did try to use the Lolo app again for a practice half-marathon and it worked fine.  I think the issue was my phone on why it stopped working, not the app.

I was also jealous and amazed at everyone coming off the full marathon buses at my resort on Sunday with multiple medals hanging over their neck.  Again, I was a newbe so I really did not know how they acquired them so I asked.  I now have a mission to find a way to get in to to the Dopey Challenge in Jan. 2015!!!  If not the Dopey, then for sure the Goofy. I am hoping I can go with the travel agency that sent me last time again for the Dopey.  In the mean time, I have learned about another Run Disney medal and that is the Coast to Coast medal.  So, on Jan. 28th, I sat by my computer and crossed my fingers to get a spot at the Disneyland event in August.... I did!! And, I managed to get a Dumbo spot! I am extremely excited for both the Dumbo Double Dare and the Coast to Coast. :)

My flights are booked, I booked a hotel that I hope is OK... I read it is within walking distance so, hopefully.  This time I am going alone so I wish I was on the Disney property, but I just could not afford that much.

Now, my official time at the DisneyWorld Half Marathon was 2:59:15 which I am happy about considering all the extra time getting extra water due to the heat and the potty stops that went with them.  If you want to know about placement, I placed mid pack for age, gender, and overall where I am nice and happy.  Race events around me, I am always near the back.  That brings up one more great thing about running Disney... You are never alone, and the very last runner is treated just like the first.  The support is huge for everyone and I would highly recommend a Disney running event to runners, especially if it is your first event.  Now, I can only speak about DisneyWorld here, but if DisneyLand is as well organized, I am going to have to make more money to afford my new Run Disney habit. :D

So when I am reading about all these running events back in Disney... I wish I was back there. ;)

Any of you ran Disney or plan to?


Anna said...

I have done the Goofy Challenge + 5km with TNT just over a year ago and then the disneyland Dumbo Dare last year.. my dream is be wealthy enough to do every race in one year..they give the best bling