Before I knew it, my alarm was going off at 3am – it was time for the Disney Half Marathon! When I checked the weather, I knew instantly I’d have to take this race slower than I had planned – it was already 65 degrees and VERY humid!
I had originally planned to meet up with a few friends before the race, however the lines to the race shuttle were MUCH longer than I anticipated – it took nearly 20 minutes to get to a bus. I had really underestimated how big this race weekend was! I arrived at the race area around 4:10, and heard the announcer telling runners to start heading to their corrals, as it was about a 15 minute walk to the corrals. I started to head to my corral, but didn’t get very far – it was packed! Before I knew it, it was 5:30 and I heard the fireworks going off for the Elite Athletes start – and I was nowhere near my corral.
I heard more fireworks a few minutes later and realized I had officially missed my corral start. Fortunately, the crowd started to move a bit faster when the fireworks started so I was able to jump into Corral C during their start. I couldn’t see too well and thought I had turned on the GPS on my Nike+ Sportswatch (I had it on an indoor sensor since I’ve been primarily treadmill training), but quickly realized I hadn’t turned on the GPS making my distances and pace off.
My original plan for this race was to take it really easy, but without my GPS to time me I didn’t really know my pace and had to rely on how I felt. Miles 1-6 flew by, and before I knew it I was running through Cinderella’s Castle in the Magic Kingdom – my favorite part of runDisney races!
After going through Cinderella’s Castle, there wasn’t a lot to see so miles 7-13 were really long for me (I need things to distract me!). Thankfully, there were tons of spectators and volunteers cheering us on and that helped me continue through the race (a HUGE THANK YOU to all the spectators and volunteers!). I was very happy to approach Epcot, and a few minutes later I (finally) was at the finish line getting my Donald medal!
Overall, I think Disneyland is still my favorite half marathon course. I really liked going through a variety of parks and running through Angel’s Stadium, as well as spectators cheering everywhere you look (this could also be because this is the only major race that weekend).
After the race, I spent the day relaxing and re-hydrating: I had my first marathon first thing the next morning!
Half Marathon Results
Division Place: 55/1,242
Female Place: 501/13,128
Overall Place: 1,982/23,126