2012 Disney Princess Half Marathon

This race always scares me. In 2010, it was supposed to be my first half.  The night before the race, I caught a stomach bug that had me out of commission for well over a week. Needless to say, I did not run the race that year.  I came back and ran the race in 2011, but I remain paramoid that something will go wrong.

It didn’t help that my amazing running partner (who wasn’t running this race, since she went Goofy last month) caught a stomach bug that hit just a few hours after we ran together on Monday. (I am sure she loves that I am blogging about it.) So I was exceptionally paranoid. But I made it onto the plane with no trouble, and that was my biggest fear. Ultimately, I never got sick, thank goodness.

The race expo felt very crowded this year, though packet pickup was a breeze. Didn’t do much other shopping due to the crowds.

I had preordered the necklace, sight unseen. Above are the necklaces from both this race and from Tink. About what I expected for $20. I will probably take the charms off and make a running charm bracelet at some point.  There were some people unhappy with the quality, but I have no complaints.

The week was a bit rainy on and off, and I was wondering what race morning would bring.  The forecast indicated that there might be rain in the later part of the day, and it would be cool, with a high only in the 60’s.  Perfect running weather!  I wore my Peacock SparkleSkirt with a blue shirt and pink sleeves, which I planned to take off later in the race (spoiler alert: I didn’t take them off).

Got to the race start with my sister Caitlin and met up with the rest of the ROTE gang getting ready for the race.  The plan was to start out running easy 1:1s with Katie and Caitlin.  We all have a race next weekend, so the point of this race was to go slow and steady and have fun.

And have fun, we did.  The miles absolutely flew by.  While I’m not fast with a 1:1 run/walk pattern, it’s very comfortable, and seems doable for a marathon, if that remains in my future.  I learned something new about the Princess race as well!  The mile markers all have big scenes of the princesses – and they also have Hidden Mickeys!  I had no idea!  So all you Princesses running next year – watch out for the Hidden Mickeys!

One of the great parts about knowing so many Disney runners is that we continually came across our friends as we ran.  It made the miles pass so quickly!

Races are always a bit of a blur for me, so my recaps usually leave something to be desired.  But I always remember the bad parts, and here, there were none.  Sure, there was some crowding.  Disney races can be slow, and if you’re not in an early corral, the chances of having a very fast race are slim.  But you will have fun.  I promise.  I can’t wait to go back.

We cruised into the finish very comfortably, after seeing my parents right near the end, which was awesome.  We got rained on for approximately 30 seconds, also awesome.  And I finished and got my medal and then got my Coast to Coast medal!

 

It was a lot of fun wearing the C2C medal around the parks and getting all sorts of questions about it and about Tink.

After the race, the rains really started, so we rushed back to the hotel for breakfast and showers.  Then it was off to the park for some fun!

As always, I loved this race.  runDisney puts on great races, and I’m so glad to have been part of this one.  One more runDisney race for me this year – the inaugural Tower of Terror Ten Miler!  Can’t wait!

Hateful Attitudes

Over the past few days, some happenings in the running community have made me very sad.  I love running and being a part of this amazing community because of all of the people I have met and because of the experiences I have had.

But over the past few weeks, there have been some negative events in the running community, things that I hope haven’t scared off any newbies.

The first has to do with the Broad Street Ten Miler.  This one wasn’t really on my radar, as I wasn’t planning to run it, but I had a few friends who wanted to run it.  Apparently, the race sold out in only a few hours.  This led to some hateful words being spewed across the race’s Facebook page.  The race has a time limit, and is friendly to runners and walkers, as long as they can keep up with the required pace.  Unfortunately, people who were shut out were ranting against the walkers and against the run/walk/run people (like me).  Someone even suggested “volunteering” to be a sweeper and tackling the people caught walking, stealing their bibs, and preventing them from finishing.  Seems pretty harsh.

The second came from the runDisney Facebook page.  As with most of the recent races by runDisney, for Princess weekend, there is an opportunity for runners to run with Jeff Galloway and meet some special guests.  Though I wasn’t prevented from doing so by the rules, I opted to not register since I just participated in the event at Tink, and I do think the fast two miles right before the race were hard on me.  (That said, I still want to do it again sometime!)  They accepted 80 participants, and fewer than 10 were repeat attendees.  Someone took great offense to this and ranted about it on the Facebook page.  She went so far as to threaten to post the names of the people who were repeaters.  They were called selfish and “unDisney.”  It was ridiculous and a number of people felt threatened by this woman (who boasts that she can do background checks as part of her job).

Both of these events showed very hateful attitudes by runners.  It’s the sort of thing that makes me very sad.  This is such a small minority of the running community, but their vitriol is loud.  I wish I could reach out to every new runner who has been scared off by these people and reassure them that runners are generally very friendly, very welcoming, very supportive people.

And I would walk five-hundred miles…

Anyone else know that song?  Anyone?  Bueller?  Bueller?

Nevermind.

My goal this year isn’t to walk 500 miles, but rather to run 600 miles.  It’s been a goal for the past couple of years, and I have yet to make it.  It sounds like a lot, but when you break it down, it’s not too bad.  50 miles a month.  Definitely doable if I stick to a schedule.

So far, so good.  Races in both January and February didn’t hurt.  I managed around 75 miles in January, which is a great way to start out ahead of the curve.  I will easily hit my 50 miles this month unless I get injured or sick and don’t run my half marathon (which I hope doesn’t happen – knock on wood!).

I like setting these sorts of goals.  If I make them, great!  If I don’t, I will try better next time.   I can’t control my health or my injuries – not really, anyway.  I can just try to keep myself in the best shape possible so that I can get all of my miles in.   That means getting a proper amount of sleep, eating well, and sticking to a reasonable training schedule.

I have a lot of races planned for this year.  I just signed up for two more and plan to sign up for yet another at the Princess expo.  The two spring races are what I’m considering “supported training runs.”  I’m not going to push, I’m just going to go out and enjoy the course and the fact that I can get in a training run between half marathons and not have to carry all my water with me.  Oh, and get some fun finisher’s items as well.

And the most important part, run with my friends.

runDisney-ed out? NO WAY!

Lots of people have found my blog in the past few days by searching for Disney Princess Half Marathon.  That’s right, it’s just around the corner!  I’m excited!  Are you?

This will be my second Princess Half, and I’m looking forward to it.  I love the cheesyness of it being a women’s themed race – not only do we get the characters out on the course (including the pirates), but last year, there was some additional eye-candy in the form of a pair of firefighters waving at the runners as we went by.  Some would say this is sexist.  I say this is awesome.  In general, I love events put on by runDisney, so I’m counting the days til I get to go.

Since I ran Tinker Bell, this also means I’ll be getting my Coast to Coast for the second year in a row!

I’ve got a lot of Disney races on my schedule.  I’ve decided to run the Tower of Terror Ten Mile race.  It’s right before my friend Katie’s wedding, and will be a good weekend to hang out before the wedding week (where she will be quite busy, I assume).  I really love the ten mile distance, though I’m worried about the late night race.

I have also booked a hotel room for Disney Marathon Weekend 2013.  I think I’m going to be signing up for the 20th Anniversary of the Disney Marathon – Mickey 20!  It’s definitely a scary thought, and I’m nervous about training for a full marathon.  But I have a lot of friends also planning to run it, so we can train together, both in person and virtually.  Anyone want to join in the fun?

Post-Race Letdown

For a lot of runners, taper time is difficult.  They find themselves getting antsy and stressed, wondering if they should be training more, knowing that their training plan will get them to the finish.

Personally, I love taper week.  After weeks and weeks of hard training, I get in one last long run and then it’s like I can breathe.  A week of easy running before the race.  Hooray!

But what I don’t love is the week after the race.  The week where I rest up and slowly ease my body back into running after beating it up during the race.  This week, due to some lingering soreness and a weird knee twinge, I didn’t run until Saturday.  And I felt like such a slug the whole time.  I know it’s what was right for my body, but I can’t help but feel like I’m a slacker and that I’m just sitting around gaining weight when I should be training.

But I know that rest is a crucial part of a training plan.  Rest is what is going to help me get through the six half marathons I have remaining until the summer (I hate racing in the summer).  If I don’t rest, I’m going to end up injured and won’t be able to race at all.

Of course, that doesn’t mean I like it.  I miss the endorphins.  And I miss the calorie burn for sure (is it possible to have gained 3 pounds in a rest week while still watching calories?).   But with yesterday’s run, I’m back on track, and will be starting up training again this week.