Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Disney Marathon Recap - Part 1

Ok, the official photos still aren't up, but here are some photos I had taken with my phone at Disney. I should start by telling you that I am a Disney nut - I love all things Disney.  As some of you know, I was going to do this race as Tinkerbell. But, we lost my grandmother, and while I knew she wouldn't have wanted me to skip the race, running it in costume just seemed frivolous.  So, I wore Moving Comfort capris and a wicking tee and a half-zip fleece (that's what you see tied around my hips in all the photos - I warmed up quickly but was afraid to toss it for fear I'd get cold again) and some inexpensive gloves.  I had a long fleece jacket, as well, but that was just for the start.

So, I had set an alarm for 3:00 am, but I woke at 2:50 am, and I was up!  I had laid my clothing out when we got to the resort (on Thursday - that's how excited I was!) and just put them in an empty drawer.  Speaking of getting to the resort on Thursday - we walked and walked and walked for the three days before the race.  I have no problem walking, but this was a bit much even for me - I was already sore from all the walking at the start of the race.  In fact, I was limping a little. Probably not a wise plan for the days before an endurance event!

Anyway, I grabbed my clothes and got dressed, and had my breakfast of a banana, a cup of weak coffee and a miniature LaraBar. Then I kissed my husband goodbye (he stayed in bed!) and walked the five minutes to the bus stop.  

It was cold.  Really cold.  I was really regretting my bare lower legs, but then we got on the bus and I was fine.  It took a little while to get to the start, but I didn't care - the bus was warm! When we finally made it to the start area, it was quite a long walk to the bag-check/staging area, and then another walk to the start line.  And it was still cold, but there were so many people around that they sort of served s a windbreak, so that was nice.

We stood around for a bit outside the staging area, waiting for them to let us into the corral area.  Then we walked for, I don't know - ten minutes, maybe? to the corrals.  I was in Corral D, but remember that I signed up for Disney before I had my back injury.  I got to my corral, though, and saw people there of all shapes and sizes and ages and just went to the back of the pack - I knew it would be fine.

Then there was a long wait for the start of the race. They had music and speakers and such to entertain us while we passed the time, and I sat on the ground wrapped in my fleece jacket for a bit to give my legs a break.  And then, the wheelchair athletes were off!  And I stood up and the first wave was off, and we all moved forward with each successive wave until it was OUR TURN!  Fireworks and cheering and finally, finally - I was running Disney!

I was chilly at first, so I kept my long fleece on until about mile 2.  I didn't see any photo opportunities in that first little bit, so I just concentrated on covering the ground.  I ran by myself, but runners are generally friendly and I talked a little bit to the people around me.

Some time after mile two I tossed the fleece, and then we were heading into Epcot!  And characters!  Woot woot!  I splurged and bought the marathon CD, thinking it would save time if I just had the official photographers take pics.  But not every character had an official photographer, so the photos in this post are the ones taken with my phone.  You'll see them, below.

Epcot and the Magic Kingdom are actually pretty close together, so before I knew it there I was - running through the Magic Kingdom!  Well, running between character stops, because there were LOTS of characters in the kingdom! I also took advantage of a bathroom stop here, and it was so nice to have a warm bathroom and running water in a bathroom on a race.  Love, love, love that!

And then, Cinderella's Castle!  I didn't see Cinderella, but costumed castle staff were on hand to cheer and applaud. We ran through and I'd been warned about photographers on the other side, so I put on a happy face - oh, who am I kidding?  I was smiling for most of this race! :) I also stopped for a photo in front of the castle - of course! :)

Now, being a Disney nut I am not sure I could run this race for time, ever.  I just couldn't resist the characters.  However, stopping for characters added a LOT of time to my run - some of the lines had thirty people in them. Sometimes, if a cast member can't figure out your camera, you have to go through the line twice to get a photo.  This obviously adds to the time you spend on the run, and when you start hurting (and it's a marathon. It's safe to say that most of us will hurt at some point), that extra hour or so really comes back to haunt you.  If you're thinking of running this race for fun and photos, make sure you've thought that through.  

I'll come back to Part 2 of the recap in a future post,  In the meantime, as promised - pics!

Here I am with Pooh and Piglet - my favorites!

And Thumper and girlfriend! Love them, too!

Scrooge McDuck and friends! 

Pirates! Who doesn't love a pirate?

 Mary Poppins - loved that movie. Coincidentally, my grandmother went to school with Dick Van Dyke. My family is from Covington, Indiana and I was born in Danville, Illinois where Dick Van Dyke got his start. So of course I had to get a photo with this crew.

Fairies! :)

More pirates!

It's a Bug's Life! :)

There were four photos on my phone that did not come out.  This means I waited in those lines for nothing. :( This makes me sad, because I wanted LOTS of pics! Still, all of the official pics should be good.  We'll see.

Still to come: Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and the dreaded back pain rears its ugly head.  But who persevered and finished the race anyway? Me! 


  1. Great pictures! To be honest, I don't think I could ever bring myself to stop running a race to take a picture, but seeing all your pics (and those from other bloggers) makes me want to run Disney someday. Looking forward to Part 2!

  2. Congrats! I am so happy for you! I love all the pics and the race recap is great. Can't wait for part 2! :)

  3. Leah, I do understand your perspective. But it's Disney - and I could live there, I really could! I know it makes me a geek, but I don't care! :)

  4. i was totally excited to come and cheer everyone on, but it conflicted with the ragnar this weekend. I love that you totally enjoyed it and took time to get pictures, that is sooooo what this race is about

  5. Amanda, Ragnar is a big deal and I don't blame you! :)

  6. This one is on my list! I will admit stopping during a race might be tough for me but I will get a test of that at Big Sur and hope to do Disney next year. And I am pretty sure I will stop for the characters :) Can't wait to read the rest!

  7. I'm enjoying your race report! And yep, I definitely would stop for the pictures! (Don't know that I'd ever do a full-on marathon, though.) Way to go, you & Brooke represented Team Tinsel Vixen very well! :-)

  8. I love the pics!! I'm definitely adding this race to my list of "must-run" races!

  9. Great pictures--makes running a marathon look like a walk in the park (such a pun!). Looking forward to part 2.

  10. you are so stinkin cute! :) i swear wearing shorts, my legs didn't warm up until the half way potin.

  11. Elizabeth, it was way more fun than I thought it would be!

    PG, and way easier than you might think, too!

    Jaime, I think it's a must-do, especially if you're a Disney fan!

    MissZippy, if it hadn't been for the back, this race would have been a walk in the park - there was just so much going on!

    Brooke, you are sweet! And I want you to look at your photos from now on with as much grace as when you look at mine, ok? :)

  12. Congratulations! I wish I had gotten some pictures. My husband tried to take pictures of me running, but they didn't really come out. He did get me on video through the magic kingdom. Hope the photographers got some good ones!

  13. Cool pics. I'd have a hard time running a race like this "just for fun". That alone would be the challenge for me.

    My friend was down there running the Goofy challenge. I just got an e-mail from her tonight with some pics. It certainly would be nice to run in that weather at least.


  14. Peanut, the official photos are now up but they aren't recognizing my order. :( Hopefully you can see yours, though!

    Heidi, it helps if you go into it with an injury. That was the deciding factor for me.

  15. great photos! congrats on the run! disney is my favorite place! ran the disney princess twice but hoping to do that one next year!

  16. great photos! I just showed my 4 year old the pics, and she loved them too : )

  17. loving all the photos! I didn't even see half of these characters!