Disney's Royal Family 5k (Saturday)
I ran on Saturday with Paula, a friend from work. The race started at 7, which was much better than the Disney 5k that I ran back in January. As usual, I made Katherine come with me to spectate... and in typical Disney Race fashion, we got there way earlier than we had to be there, but it wasn't too bad. We had some spontaneous dance party time, so it was worth it. Soon, Paula got there, and then eventually, it was time to get in our 'chutes' (since there were no official corrals).
Paula and I decided to run together. It was her first ever race and I was excited to be there for it. We made decent time, doing a walk/run combination to the finish. We stopped for a picture with Snow White and Dopey, then made our way to the finish.
After we were done, we hung out at EPCOT until Paula had to go to work. (poor girl, I would have been exhausted.) Kath and I played in the parks until we we close to collapse from exhaustion.
Overall, it was a great race and lots of fun. I really enjoy doing the 5ks, because so many people are so cheerful during the whole thing. Disney does it right.
Disney's Princess Half Marathon (Sunday)
I was so nervous about the half marathon, because last year, I almost got picked up by the sweeper. I was terrified and I felt like I had to prove something to myself by not getting picked up. I started in an earlier corral this year than last, so I was excited about that... but still nervous. Katherine came again as my favorite spectator (what a trooper!).
The walk to the corrals was backed up for some reason- I think too many people stopped at the port-a-potties that were halfway down the trail, which caused a lot of congestion. I didn't get to my actual corral until during the National Anthem, which made me nervous initially, but there was still a lot of time until the start. I talked to a lady who said that she had run the Goofy Challenge in 2011 (I was wearing my shirt) and was wondering what other races we had done together. Then it was time! I was actually starting to feel a little excited about it.
When our corral started, I decided to run it out and not take walking breaks until the crowd thinned out a little. Then my shoe came untied. (ugh!!!) So I had to stop before I even got to the first mile, when the crowd was extremely thick, just to tie my shoe. I heard Katherine yelling for me in the dark, but I couldn't see her, so I waved and kept going. When I just passed the marker for mile 2, I passed paramedics and a poor lady who had gone down on the route. :( So sad.
I stopped for a picture right before the Magic Kingdom with all of the heroes, just like I did last year. This year, it was still dark out when I got there, so I took that as a good sign! haha. When I was waiting there, the winner passed by on the next street. She had a 3-4 minute lead and looked like she wasn't slowing down at all. Amazing.
I was starting to feel some cramps in my abdomen for a few miles when I got to the TTC, so I was glad to see Katherine waiting for me. I stopped and got some ibuprofen from her and kept going... after a quick port-a-potty stop. I knew I had to make good time, because I wanted to stop for pictures, but I also wanted to keep a 14-something minute pace. The bathroom stop and the intense crowding in some areas kept me in the low 15-minute pace time, but that was alright.
Running through the Magic Kingdom was fun as it always is! I stopped for some of the pictures, but none with extremely long lines.. just because I didn't want to cut it too closely. Usually the stretch behind the Magic Kingdom (mile 7-8) has been pretty mentally tough for me, but it went okay that time. I used a few Gu gels that I brought with me, which helped propel me along the route.
Kath was waiting in front of the Polynesian and she ran with me for a minute or so and it was good to see her. It helped get me through the rest of the race.
When I got to mile 10 and then ran up the exit ramp toward mile 11, I knew that I had redeemed myself from last year. I couldn't even see the end of the line of people behind me. I had stopped for pictures and for a bathroom break and I was still at a 15:15 pace, which, naturally, is much slower than my typical pace, but decent for a Disney race, where I care less about time and more about pictures and fun. At that point, I knew I could do it.
It started pouring when I was at mile 11-12, which was rough, because the rain was so cold. I just sped up in order to push through and finish, because I was almost there. I was a little disappointed, because I knew that Mrs. Incredible was up ahead of me, but I knew I wouldn't be able to stop and see her. She went back in the trailer due to the rain. I was definitely disappointed.
Then I saw my favorite spectator (well second favorite, considering Kath's been to almost every race that I've run that she hasn't run to spectate)... the lady in the power wheelchair with the sign that says "hey stranger, I'm proud of you!" That definitely got me to speed up for the last mile of the race.
I finished with a "Disney PR", just meaning that I ran faster than I've run for any of the other Disney races- even though my time is about 30 minutes slower than my real PR, it's okay. I love Disney races for the entertainment and the pictures. Amazing.
Time to start training for my next challenge!
Goal: 1000 miles/366 days
So far: 149.2 miles/58 days
To go: 850.8 miles/308 days