Oh, how I love Run Disney! Say what you will about the crowded course, the expensive race entry, the t-shirt colors, but no one can say they don’t have great race course support!
This is my 4th Disneyland Half and I had a blast. Last year I went as Belle from Beauty and the Beast, this year I went as Mary Poppins. So fun!
This year, Run Disney took a hint from last year and opened the expo on Thursday instead of Friday. Thank goodness! We got there on Friday, but I was following the FB groups closely and everyone said it was a lot less coo coo bird crazy than it was last year. Last year the 5k, 10k and Dumbo Double Dare people had to pick their bibs up on Friday, as that was the first day the expo was open and it was a cluster! So, I was glad they were paying attention and made modifications for this year to make it a much smoother process.
Our flight landed at 8am and we dropped our luggage off at our hotel and went straight to the expo at the Disneyland Hotel. It was SUPER smooth. Before we even picked up our bibs, my husband and I went to the Run Disney merchandise area to see if there was anything fun to buy. They had a ton of stuff, but I just settled on a 13.1 car magnet. I really wanted a wine glass, but we have so many wine glasses, hubby gave me a, “do you really need that glass?” look, so I passed.
Some Expo pics:
After, we went and picked up our bibs and then our t-shirts. I heard a few complaints about the color of the Half Marathon t-shirt, but I actually really like any hue of green, so I was happy. Plus, they were in woman’s and men’s sizes, so the shirt actually fit me instead of hanging, like in the past.
After picking up everything, we hit the parks! My sister lives in LA, so she came and hung out with us at the park. We had a great time. We had some beers with dinner and then had some of those glow drinks at the Mad Hatter’s T-Party. It was awesome knowing we didn’t have to wake up early on Saturday since we weren’t running the 10k.
Saturday we spent another day in the parks, but took it easy on the walking. Instead we enjoyed some shows, if you haven’t seen Aladdin at CA Adventure, it’s a must, and slow strolling. It was a great park day.
Once back at the hotel, we laid out all of our stuff for the morning and drifted off to sleep fairly easily.
Sunday morning the alarm went off at 3:45am. Good morning!! We woke up, got ready and started walking toward the staging area.
We stopped off at Starbucks and grabbed some oatmeal and an ice tea, my favorite. We got to our corrals 10 minutes before the start, which was cutting it close for us. Though, I have to say, it was nice not having to stand around for a half an hour to start the race.
Per usual, they had the National Anthem sang. I loved the guy, I believe it was a cast member, that sang, he had a really deep voice and did a great job. They had fireworks go off during the song, which always gets me teary eyed.
Not too long after that corral A & B were off together. They then let C & D go and then E & F, which was me.
Once I was off, i got a slow start and then steadied into a pace. We ran around the parks and then we got into California Adventure through the back. We ran by World of Color, always a favorite of mine.
After a short jaunt in CA Adventure, we headed into Disney. I always love running between the parks, there is always a ton of spectators cheering for us!
First we went down Main Street, with the ChEAR Squad cheering us on. All of the buildings were lit up. So pretty! We ran around the castle and the carousel and then the best part…through the castle! I didn’t get a great picture of me through the castle this year, but it’s okay. Still love that part of the race.
They didn’t have any of the princesses on the course, but they had a bunch of villains, Jafar, Evil Queen, I think Cruella DeVille…something a little different. They usually have the princesses, there so it was fun to mix it up. We ran by Darth Vader and some Storm Troopers in Tomorrowland and through Toon Town and then we were back out into the streets of Anaheim.
Oh, the streets of Anaheim…not my favorite part. I seriously felt like mile 4 would never end. Though, there was some awesome course support. Cheerleaders, ballet folklorico, Dance Troupes, bands, hula dancers, classic cars and people with awesome signs.
I think my favorite sign was, “You think you’re tired, my arms tired from holding this sign!” I saw him about 3 times on the course, it was awesome.
Right after mile 9, we headed into Angels Stadium. I hi-fived as many boy scouts and girl scouts I could. There is something about running into the stadium to a ton of cheering people while you run around the track. So amazing.
After that, I was so ready to be done. A 5k left to go, I just focused on putting one foot in front of the other. My legs were getting tired and the sun was coming out, which meant it was getting warm.
Finally I saw the mile 12 sign, just a mile or so to go. I booked it to the finish, hi-fived Minnie Mouse and did a little jump at the finish line.
Another medal to add to the collection and some great memories to take home.
I finished at 2:20…way off my PR of 2:07, but whatever, I had a great time. Rob finished about 45 minutes before I did and he texted me right when we finished saying, hurry up, there is no line at the massage tent! Lol. So I booked it over to the massage tent and got a great 10 minute massage. Perfect way to end the race.
After we showered and cleaned up, we had breakfast at Storyteller’s Cafe and then had a drink at Trader Sam’s. Love that place!
Then off to the airport to head back home.
I start marathon training next week to start getting geared up for Goofy! Holy moly, I can’t believe this is actually happening.
QOTD: Did you do the Disneyland Half Marathon or Dumbo Double Dare this year? What did you think?