adventures in running

2012 Walt Disney World Half Marathon!!!

Soooooo …… I DID IT!!!

First off, I LOVED the recorded messages sent in by my friends! It was so amazing to hear familiar voices encouraging me to keep going! Some of them were hilarious. Some of them were beyond encouraging! All of them were very special to me! And did what I intended – distract me! I don’t remember when all of them were, but I’ll try my best. I’ll try to do a blog entry about the recordings!!

We went to the expo on Thursday to get our packets and our 13.1 car decals. They also had “I DID IT!” shirts for the half marathon, full marathon, and goofy challenge! I had no clue they made these shirts and Mom and I BOTH had to have one!!!

 (taken at Epcot on Sunday. yes, I’m wearing my Garmin. I wanted to see how far we walked at the theme parks!! and yes, I’m wearing lunch on my shorts.)

While we were at the expo on Thursday, I also bought water bottles that can attach to my SPI belt. Actually, we bought a 2 pack, but I got one and Mom got one. The water bottles are made by ifitness. I really struggled with whether I should carry my hand held water bottle that I’ve run with since I started running, or getting a hydration belt. On Friday, we went back to the expo so I could get an ifitness belt and another water bottle. Just in case.

Friday evening we had a very frustrating/heated situation with the travel agency we used. For customer service alone, we WILL NEVER USE MARATHON TOURS AGAIN. And we recommend you not use them, either. They are located in Boston so that may have a lot to do with their lack of customer service, but they are IN THE SERVICE INDUSTRY! You’d think they’d be better at it than they were! I don’t care to go into what the situation was, but we will never use them again.

So, after we were done dealing with them, I started setting all my stuff out because Saturday morning was going to be an early one!!! I cannot tell you how many times I ran back and forth in our small “resort” room trying to determine if I should wear my SPI belt with my water bottles, my ifitness belt with my water bottles, or just run with my hand held Camelbak. I ran back and forth and back and forth. Hopefully the people in the room below us didn’t notice …… I think part of my problem was I was wearing a slippery skirt and I wanted to have access to both of my pockets. One for my phone (for my running app – for intervals and my music) and one for my camera so I could snap pictures! The lady at the ifitness booth said to wear the belts low on my hips. And with the skirt, it didn’t want to stay on my hips. I finally decided on my SPI belt with the water bottles. I put 2 packages of Jelly Belly Sport Beans in the SPI belt. And got the rest of my stuff ready.

Then I settled in to sleep. For a few hours. Just before I fell asleep, I felt an overwhelming urge to stick with my Camelbak. I’ve always run with it. I still ran with my SPI belt with the beans in it because there wasn’t anywhere else for my beans to go!

Sooooo ….. I got up at 2:15 and showered. Got dressed. Blow dried my hair. With my hair so short, it certainly doesn’t fit in a pony tail. I use 4 bobby pins to keep the front hairs pulled back. I totally forgot to pack any. So, I went digging in my bathroom stuff and didn’t have any. There were 2 in my purse. They made it through airport security. I figured those would have to work!

We left the “resort” room at 3:15. AM. We headed down to the bus stop. AND THERE WAS A LINE!!! I shouldn’t have been surprised, but I was. But I give the race coordinators a lot of credit, there were like 10 busses lined up, waiting. They just weren’t smart in loading. There was no reason to have such a line, with all those busses. There was traffic, but we didn’t have to drive in it!

They drop us off in a parking lot near Epcot. With busses from all the other resorts. So we just followed the crowd and the volunteers’ advise. Still following the crowd, we enter this area where there are people EVERYWHERE! That got there before us! It was still cold. Had our jackets on still. We stood in the wrong line for the port-a-potties. Like we ALWAYS stand in the wrong line. After we used the restrooms, we put our jackets in the bag to check (we just used one, we only needed one) and continued to follow the crowd. We were supposed to be in our corrals by 5:00. It was 4:52. Inching along, following the crowd. There was no way we were going to make it to our corrals before 5. I don’t even know how far we walked, inching along. But we were still inching along at 5:30 when the first corral (a) (wheel chair athletes) were sent. AAHHH!!! Hope the people in the crowd weren’t supposed to be in the second corral (b).

We made it to our corral around the time the third corral (c) left. We were in the seventh corral (g) of eight corrals. I heard during the run that people who registered last got put in the last corral.

There were port-a-potties just outside of our corral. At least 30 of them. We climbed over the corral to use them.

(picture below) Some just climbed over and ran to the trees ….. can you see them? Also, people were already shucking clothing.

A man behind me laughed and said I couldn’t take that picture. I laughed and said I could too. I said there were port-a-potties right there, if they wanted privacy, they would have gone in one!

After using the port-a-potty, I was ready to get this show on the road!!! There was just so much energy around was amazing!!

Mickey, Goofy, and Donald, I believe, were on the stage having a good time with the announcer!

There were a ton of people in our corral. Well, there were more than 22,000 people doing the half marathon. There were, 22,421 finishers. There were 13,478  marathon finishers.

There were times when it was difficult to keep up my pace with so many people around me. I did intervals of 3 and 3 for the first 10 miles. I may have walked a few, but not many. I passed people the whole time. There were always people in front of me to pass, and of course, always people behind me!!

Mom took off almost immediately. Which is normal. I caught up to her around mile 6, just before Cinderella’s castle. I tried taking our picture while we were running ….

Not so great, but fun none-the-less!! She was having issues with her Garmin so she wasn’t focused on her speed. After she got the issue taken care of, she was off again!

I aaaaalmost caught up with her around mile 8. But I did catch up with her around mile 9 and I passed her! Yes, that’s right. I passed my Mom!! First time I have ever passed her in a race!!!

After mile 10, I walked without running. The bottom of my feet hurt pretty bad. I’m not sure if it was my shoes. I wore my old shoes. As in the old shoes I purchased last January. Because I’ve had issues with the last 3 pairs of shoes I’ve purchased. Well, KB said not to wear my newest pair. And I think she was right!!!

But, after 10 miles, and just walking, I was STILL passing people!!! I passed people up until I crossed the finish line!!!! I cannot believe that.

There were lots of Disney characters along the course. All of them had lines. I didn’t have time for lines. And I didn’t have anyone to take a picture, if I’d wanted to stop. So I didn’t take any pictures with any of the characters. But on Monday when we went to the Animal Kingdom, we had this picture taken ….

I SCREAMED AND SCREAMED as I came across the finish line. There’s a video of it! (= But I can’t post it here because I’ve only got the free version of wordpress.

My SPI belt irritated me from the beginning. FROM THE BEGINNING!!! If it hadn’t been a gift from Mom and it hadn’t had sport beans in it, I probably would have tossed it!!!!! IRRITATED ME THE WHOLE WAY! I pulled it down past my skirt, it rode up. I pulled it up, above my skirt and it just rubbed.

There was a Clif Bar stop. But by the time I got there, they were out of everything. What a disappointment! I had a Clif Bar gel shot thing, Vanilla flavor, that Mom bought at the expo. I had received a free one from a Clif Bar facebook freebie. We tried it on our last run and it was pretty good. About like Vanilla pudding. But none of the running stores in the Tulsa area have them. Disappointing!!

After I crossed the finish line, they handed me a medal, and a runDisney thermal blanket. Just past that was people handing out water. I stood there for a minute, thinking Mom shouldn’t be too far behind me. Then someone shooed me on. I grabbed a PowerAde, a banana, and a Sprite. I was wandering around, looking for the bag check area and ran into RD. We knew she was going to be there, but I cannot believe in all the people out there, that I ran into her. She was looking for us. She did the Marathon on Sunday. We found the bag check area. Mom called, I told her we’d meet her outside the bag check area.

After a few minutes, she wasn’t feeling well. She ate my banana and drank all of her water. Then she was ready to go back to the resort.


Rode the bus back to the resort. Took hot baths with Theraganics bath bombs and lounged for a bit. Then we met RD for dinner.

What a day!! I COMPLETED A HALF MARATHON and was able to make it back to the bus!!!! SOOOO PROUD OF MY MOM AND MYSELF!!!!!

This lady shucked her shirt in front of me. I believe this was before we’d gone a mile yet. And that IS NOT a running bra…..

And this lady’s shirt cracks me up! Mom told me about her…..

I took this picture juuuust before I PASSED HER!!! TAKE THAT OLD LADY!!

(picture below) Can you see all the people in front of me??

There were a few marching bands and other types of things to entertain and distract us, but I hear there was a lot more on the Marathon course.

There were several places where the course narrowed from like a 4 lane highway to 2 lanes. There was a recording that said “Caution runners, course narrows ahead.” There was one that stuttered. “Ca-caution runners, course narrows ahead.” Made me laugh all weekend!!! And they repeated and repeated and repeated. You could hear it at least 10 times as you ran/walked past.

Probably the coolest part of doing the run at Disney is attending the theme parks in the days after. If you wear your “I Did It!” shirts, your race shirt, or your medal, people were always congratulating you!!

Another really neat thing is, while we were waiting to cheer RD at mile 17 ish on Sunday, several of those doing the marathon or goofy challenge were congratulating US on our run because we were wearing our “I Did It!” shirts!! That was just amazing!!

I went 13.23 in 13:18:06 according to my Garmin.

runDisney official results – 5k 46:35 | 10k 1:33:04 | 15k 2:19:48 | Average pace 15:09

Garmin results – 13:23 in 3:18:06 | Average pace 14:58

Mile 1 – 14:44
Mile 2 – 14:57
Mile 3 – 15:03
Mile 4 – 14:48
Mile 5 – 14:40
Mile 6 – 14:48
Mile 7 – 14:52
Mile 8 – 14:40
Mile 9 – 14:47
Mile 10 – 14:44
Mile 11 – 15:24
Mile 12 – 15:42
Mile 13 – 15:48
Mile 13-13:23 – 2:56 (12:33 min/mile)

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