Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Disney Marathon

I was going to post about the day before the Marathon first, but I am afraid I will forget something if I wait too long!
I got up Sunday morning at 2:30 to get dressed and ready by 3:00 for the Event bus. I had heard nightmare stories about the busses for the Half and I was nervous! When I got to the bus stop, I boarded right away and before long we were on our way to the Starting Line!
I had purchased the Race Retreat, and went right to the tent. They had Tinkerbell and her Boy Toy (as my teenie called him) and there was NO line, so I rushed over to get my pic taken!
 Flat Mama!

Afterwards, I joined my friends from the PbRC and had half of a bagel with PB&J and some water, courtesy of the Race Retreat, at a nice comfy table on comfy folding chairs. LOVING the RR so far! Ahhhh but the best was yet to come. A round of Porta Potties with no line, all to ourselves! LOVE it, worth it's wait in gold right there!
We all gathered outside at around 4:15 for the group photo. This was when I started to worry about Colleen! She wasn't there yet! She was still on the bus!
What a great group of friends!!! No Colleen yet, and they started announcing that we needed to start the long walk to the corrals. OH No! Luckily, two PbRC friends, Brianna and Melissa, invites me to walk with them. They were going to Corral C, and I was in D, and they asked me to sneak in join them there. No one checked my bib, so in I went. We then sat there. For an hour. I was glad to have them there, it stopped me from worrying about Colleen not making it! Colleen made it in time, but she was back in D, so I told her I would take the first mile slow so she could catch up.
With a little fanfare, Disney style, they started our corral just before 6.

I ran slowly, letting Brianna and Melissa go their own pace ahead of me. At the one mile marker I decided to go to the bathroom again, but the line was too long, so I joined a few ladies in the bushes outdoor potty. Am I a real runner now? lol
Back to the road and on to mile 2. I stopped to visit some Pirates in order to let Colleen catch up.

Jack and Barbosa were great! Still no Colleen though! I started really worrying at around mile 4 when I got to MK and still didn't see her. I stopped again at mile 4.75 to meet some old friends, Jack and Sally. While on line, I heard my name called out and there she was! There was much hugging and silliness and then we had our turn!
We look a bit washed out, lol, the official photo is much better, but I haven't purchased yet. Still waiting for finish line photos to show up! We dashed off, happy to be together now, and headed towards the MK. Running through there was amazing. We felt great, the sun was coming out, and we were closing in on the castle!

After that, we headed back out of the castle and into nowhere land! The next few miles were very uninteresting, this was also where the sewage plant was and the smell was vomitous! I had to hold my nose while I ran for a good mile! YUCK!
Soon we entered the Animal Kingdom, and the first mile was back roads. They had some friends to greet us though, and it was shady, which was nice. It was starting to get hot!

This was around the halfway mark, and we were feeling amazing! It was about 9:00 and we decided to ride Expedition Everest because there was no line. Yes, we stopped in the middle of a marathon and rode a roller coaster. It.Was.Epic. They let us cut the line, so we got right onto it, and I had my first ride on EE. I was so glad we decided to ride it, especially because we had just made "friends" with a man dressed as Tink, and he had a delicious English accent. He was also on the ride, and afterwards, while we discussed how the last jolt squished my Honey Stinger Waffles, he mentioned how he was "regretting eating that bu-naw-naw". OMG I about died, it was so cute! He hovered around us for a bit, and eventually ran off.
After we left AK, we were on a stretch of very hot, very long, very boring road. These were the ugly miles. Mile 15 was a good one, because the Grave Diggers were there. We gladly waited on line for a photo op!

After this, though, it was 4 straight miles of.....nothing! It was hot, boring, lifeless. Very few spectators, great volunteers, lots of walkers. We did some walking as well, after about mile 17. It was just so hot.
Mile 19 was the ESPN Game Zone, and everyone was perking up. We were almost to the Mile 20 Surprise! Woohoo Disney had been bragging about this for weeks, and we were so excited to see what the big surprise would be! So many ideas had floated around and there was a rumor of a Flash Mob. FUN!

Around the field we ran, and out of the park. No Flash Mob. No surprise. Were we too late? Did the slowpokes lose out? I was devastated! And hot. And now I was Grumpy, too. Out of the park we ran, and back onto the stretch of boring hot road. And there it was. The Surprise. Only, it wasn't so spectacular. It was no better than any other Character Stop. I was devastated! Again!

 There were about 6 of these guys, plus the crew: Mickey, Donald, and Goofy. On a stage. That we couldn't get to. You could stand in front of it, though. Whoopee.
We continued dow that vicious highway, towards Hollywood Studios and EPCOT. Somewhere around mile 21 or 22 were the Army Men from Toy Story, shouting at everyone to forge up the hill, having people drop and give em 20. It was cute, but the hill was an off ramp that also tilted and running on it was rough. The head soldier promised it was the last hill.
He lied.
Just sayin, lol, there are bridges ahead that we were not made aware of!
As we entered the back of Hollywood Studios, volunteers were handing out little mini Hershey Bars. Ahhhhhhh chocolate! There were smooshed up wasted chocolates on the ground from previous runners, and the volunteers were running low! Luckily, I got mine, and no one had to die that day!
We ran through the back of the park, through the tunnel where they show the costumes being made for the parks. It was nice and shady. And it was mile 23. OMG we were almost done! I think this was around the time I had my first Moment. There were Cast Members with signs, telling us how awesome we were as we entered the middle of the park, and I definitely got teary eyed!
Between HS and EPCOT, we ran along some very narrow paths. There were lots of spectators and we were given a couple very tasty Twizzlers. There were alot of walkers here, and we got stuck behind them over and over again. I am all for walking a marathon, especially in that heat. BUT many of them were walking 4 wide, and that was all the space there was. A few times we got separated, which was frustrating, but temporary.
Soon we entered EPCOT, and I was teary eyed again! The finish line was ahead, and Colleen kept telling me I was a Rock Star. I must have looked like death, lol. Thanks to her, I crossed the Finish Line  with a time of 7:12:51. We ran through holding hands. It was awesome!
We were given our medals, and found her mom, who took our picture. I couldn't find my daughter, so I texted her to meet me at the Retreat. We got our water bottle, and a cute OZ tote bag, and walked through the finish line corral. We were then told that we had to open our bottle and drink in front of the ladies in order to proceed. Apparently, the hospitals were filling up with people suffering from heat exhaustion! NO PROBLEM! We were already drinking!
After our finish line photo, also taken together, we got our stuff and went our separate ways. She was heading to dinner with her mom, and I was headed to Akershus with Morgan.

I don't have the words to even describe how it felt to finish my first Marathon. There was no doubt that I would do it, but while I was out there in that heat, it felt like the hardest thing I had ever undertaken! I was so glad to have Colleen there with me to push me, and to experience it with me! Over 5400 people did not finish the Marathon, and there were 2 reported fatalities. Marathons are no joke, and so many people did not properly train. Disney may be a family park, but racing is hard work, and you need to be prepared!
I am also glad that I ran Disney. I am totally signing up for Princess 2014, to run the Half!
Have you ever run Disney???

One last picture! I updated my Achievement Board after Disney, and the colors are really popping! If you want one of these and are not artistic, I can make you one of your own for $20. Just email me with your choice for a center picture and I can make you one of your very own!
Email me at for more details, or to ask any questions you may have!


  1. I usually run my races alone even if I am with someone there but reading this make me want this to be my first marathon and be sure to bring someone to have fun with me.....and ride rides during a marathon PRICELESS!!!!!

    1. Having Colleen there with me was priceless! It was so awesome to have someone there the whole time, to talk me through it! She was awesome! I just saw our finish line photos and our Castle photo, I bought the digital download and will post them as soon as I get them!

  2. Oh I love your race recap. I am totally putting this on my bucket list. I am glad you had a great experience and I think it is absolutely awesome you rode Everest during the middle of the marathon. Sooo awesome! Reading so many blogs about runners where all they talk about is race time and getting faster to win, it is very refreshing to hear from someone that is running for the fun of it and a good reminder to me to just have fun and enjoy. Thanks!

    1. Thanks Melissa, there is a time and a place to PR and Disney just isn't it! We had such a good time! Tomorrow I will post the official pics!

  3. Wow amazing pictures and the fact that you RAN a Marathon! Has it really hit yet that you did a marathon? It took me a few hours (okay a day) for me to get the idea that I did a 5k and that is no where near Marathon status! So congrats you earned it

    1. Thanks Alicia! It is weird, it all seems like a dream now! I am amazed that I did it, and I wanna do it again! I never thought that would happen!

  4. Love...Love your recap!!! Really inspiring...and love that you ran for the joy of Disney....even stopping and riding Everest smack in the middle of it.....Perfect Disney fun!!!
    I had read how hot it got and the humidity....You did it! Congratulations!

    1. Thank you so much! It really was amazing, everyone should Run Disney!

  5. We should do ALL long distance races togher! Thanks for keeping me going too! Running it with you made all that much more fun. We are officially marathoners! I keep checking my medal everyday to make sure it really happened. So proud to finish together! <3

    1. I agree! I am so excited to run April Fool's together! What fun we will have!

  6. Awesome job! Disney was a wonderful race. I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. You can check out my report at

    Are you planning to run it again? Love the achievement board idea!!

    1. I am planning on doing Goofy in 2014 and the Princess Half as well. I am hooked! Off to read your report! <3

  7. Great job! It sounds like you had a fun time and you got some nice photos.

    1. Thanks, it really was amazing! I can't wait to go back!

  8. Congratulations on the marathon!! I was there too, doing the Goofy.

    Wow, I had no idea there were reported fatalities there this year? I also had someone yelling me to open up our Powerade and drink right away because people were being carted off due to dehydration left and right. I carried nuun and my own water bottle with me and I went through about 8 or 9 tabs over the course of the day so I drank a lot!

    I also found the mile 20 spectacular not so spectacular. Seems to be a common theme around a lot of folks that ran the full. I'm not sure what I was expecting...more characters, a DJ pumping everyone up? Something more than puppets...

    Anyhow, congratulations again!! You did great out there!!

    1. wow, Congrats on Goofy! I hope to do that in 2014! We heard of the fatalities from a volunteer medic, not via Disney.

  9. Congratulations on your first marathon. Disney was our first, too, back in 2010, and we've loved it so much we've done the Goofy every subsequent year. I hope you keep coming back, too. If you would like, I posted pics of the events, too, and they are on tumblr, under my account "tinkerbellribbons." The blog is called "Robyn's Nest." I loved your race write-up so much, I want to share my experiences with you. Loved your Tink running costume! --Heather