Boston Marathon Training Week 7

Long Run 13.1

This weekend I ran the Disney Princess Half Marathon in Florida.    I love Disney races and was thrilled to be able to participate in this race.  Plus, I used this race as a Boston Marathon Training run.

A few weeks ago, I was given an opportunity to run this race. The race was sold out; yet I had good fortune and was able to grab a last-minute race slot that came available. With quick discussions and support from my family, I was registered to run Disney!   My plan was to stay in Disney just long enough to run the race and then return home.  It would be a quick weekend get-way.

I flew into Orlando early Saturday Morning, and went straight to my hotel Old Key West.   Once I was settled in, I took a bus to the expo to pick up my bib number and race shirt. The Expo was held at the Wide World of Sports complex. I walked around a bit and enjoy   the upbeat atmosphere of the Princess Weekend. After the Expo, I hung around the hotel enjoying the beautiful nature grounds.

Later in the day, I enjoyed a delicious spaghetti dinner and headed to bed very early.  I had to be on a Disney bus at the crack of dawn 3:00am to get to the start.  UGH! 3:00am!
The next morning, Sunday, I woke up very early 2:30am and headed towards the hotel bus stop to get a ride to the race.

At the start staging area, (Epcot Parking lot) there was a DJ playing music to get runners pumped before the race.  We were rocking to the music, it was like a Disney theme party before the race.  It was a funny sight to see all of us dancing to various club music.

Around 4:30am, runners lined up in the corrals. I was in H the last one, so I had plenty of time to hang out before the race started. Forty-five minutes later, my corral was senT off with an exciting display of fireworks granted by all the Disney Princesses. Disney chooses to set off the fireworks for each corral start, so that we all got the same start experience.

The first 4 miles were very flat, as we left the Epcot Staging area and headed towards Magic Kingdom.  Runners were greeted with Disney Princes and Princesses along the course. We then passed the street entrance to the Magic Kingdom, Disney Transportation Monorail Center, and all the Monorails leading to the Magic Kingdom.

The next stop on our journey was The Magic Kingdom.  At mile 5, we ran down Main Street heading towards Cinderella’s castle. There were so many cast members, volunteers, spectators, Disney characters and families cheering us on.   It was an amazing experience to run down Main Street, and to be able to see the beautiful castle without any tourist in our way.  What a great feeling!

After running down Main Street, we ran through Tomorrow Land, Fantasy Land, Adventure Land. Frontier Land and out a back gate heading back towards Epcot.

As we made our way back to Epcot, there were more characters, and cast members along the way to cheer us on. Soon, I was able to see that golf ball, Epcot’s Icon Space Ship Earth.  That meant I have one mile left.  I ran around Test Track, Sourin , Mission to Mars,  Space Ship Earth and out a  back gate to the Finish line.

I got my medal, drank some water and Gatorade and then headed straight to the hotel to shower and head to the airport to catch a flight back to Massachusetts.  I arrived   in Massachusetts Sunday night around 7:00pm and had a lovely dinner.