I should start this by stating that one of my main reasons to get into running was so that I could do a Run Disney race. We did the Portland Half Marathon with the idea that we wanted to do a “practice” half before the Disney World Half. Little did I know that the actual running part would be something that I would end up really enjoying.
That said, the Run Disney race was FABULOUS!
Andy and I are now officially Run Disney Half-Marathon Finishers! We completed the Disney World Half Marathon on January 9th. The weather was perfect, it didn’t get too humid and was actually pretty warm at 3:00 AM.
The lead up to the race is definitely something to talk about in another post, but after the excitement of registration, the exhaustion of training, and walking over ten miles a day for six days right before the race we were ready to run
We got up super early to make one of the first busses over to the starting line.
We stayed at the Art of Animation Resort, which actually worked out really well. The bus ride to and from the event was extremely short and much easier than I expected. As a result, we ended up getting to the starting area super early.
That is possibly the most chipper I will ever be at 3 in the morning. We look way to happy to run 13 miles, but it is Disney. The bathroom area before heading to the corrals was pretty crazy, but after that the walk to the corrals was relatively uneventful. After a brief wait in the corral, we were up and moving towards the starting line. I will not pretend that we were in an early corral, but even in corral I, we had a crazy amount of people behind us.
Then it was time to start our race!
Sorry for the blurry picture, but I was taking this with my phone… It was definitely cool to have fireworks shot off for the start of every corral. One thing that I didn’t realize was just how crowded it would be on the course. There were quite a few times where the course was pretty narrow and we would have to walk, because you were pressed in. I was thankful that we weren’t trying to go for a PR for this race, because if you are in a later corral you will be packed in.
One thing that really amazed me about this race was that the miles went by waaaay faster than the Portland Marathon. Before we knew it we were running past the mile 4 marker and moving under the Magic Kingdom sign!
While the miles seemed to be going by quickly, our pace was not even close to the Portland Marathon pace. I am going to blame this on the crowdedness on the course and walking 10+ miles for six days leading up to this. Despite all of that, we soon entered the Magic Kingdom!
I knew that I would enjoy this part of the race, but I was wrong… I LOVED IT! The crowd was super loud, the lights were gorgeous, and all of the runners were so pumped! This was by far my favorite part of the race, and one of the main reasons why I would definitely recommend this race to others.
At this point, we were already looking pretty sweaty and crazy, but haters gonna hate. After running through Tomorrowland, we got to run through the castle!! That was another huge highlight, though I took video rather than a picture, so can’t share it. You also wouldn’t be that interested in watching a super shaky video–there are tons of similar ones on YouTube if you ever want to see it.
After leaving Magic Kingdom, we ran by a beautiful golf course and along the road from Magic Kingdom to… EPCOT!
If you have ever done a Disney Race, then you know that EPCOT means Finish Line! After a quick trip through Future World at EPCOT, we ended up heading towards the finish line.
While our time was definitely not the best, we had an amazing time, and my last few miles were so much more enjoyable than the last time. It was awesome to get to finish 13.1 miles with the knowledge that we could spend the rest of the day in the parks!
After getting our medals, catching a bus back to the hotel, and some quick showers we headed back to EPCOT to spend the rest of the day around World Showcase.
I would definitely do another RunDisney race again, probably never for time. I think that if you approach it like a fun run, then it is the most wonderful experience. Plus, the medals are pretty amazing! Here’s to possibly doing the Avenger’s Half Marathon in November to get our Coast to Coast!