Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Walt Disney World 10K

Friends, it's been forever! I have been so, so busy this month. First, getting home from NYC, then going back to school for a whirlwind three days, during which I wrecked my car in our first snowfall. Soon after that I was off to Orlando for six days for my races (and some fun vacationing), and most recently I have been playing catch up on school and life. I can't tell you how great my sleep was this weekend. It really felt like the first time in weeks! Apparently it wasn't enough because I was thinking I would be posting this on a Monday (like Marathon Monday), but really it's Tuesday. In any event, today I will be recapping the Walt Disney World 10K that I did on January 9th!

In all my Marathon Monday posts I never really mentioned that I was doing the Disney 10K because my bigger goal was the half marathon. When I originally half decided I was going to Florida this year I had only registered for the 10K. I wasn't for sure that I would end up going, so I decided the 10K was very doable if training didn't go well and it was a lot less money to lose out on if I didn't end up making the trip. I am happy I registered for this originally. I hadn't ever done an official 10K before, only lots of six milers in training, but 10K is just a great distance.

Virginia Friends
The Disney races start very early. We had to get on the bus at 3:30 in the morning! This means I had to get up at 3:03! This was the second in a string of mornings I was up by 3:00 and had gone to bed late. There was no rest in Florida. The bus drove us from Animal Kingdom Lodge, where we were staying, to the parking lot of Epcot where the starting corrals were. While we were waiting, we found some of our other Virginian friends and tried to stay warm. This included wearing a stained sweater and a garbage bag.

After waiting for the first few corrals to start it was finally our turn. A little over half of the race takes place outside of the parks, through a parking lot and on highway. The first mile or so was nice and open and we ran into Elsa who was on a bridge above us blowing snow and playing Let It Go. The next two miles were a little bit crowded, but not as crowded as I had prepared myself for. There are a lot of people that do the Disney races, so I was worried I would be getting run over, or that I wouldn't be able to move around. There was only one really crowded time I wanted to throw down on a lady dressed in full firefighter gear. I got over it quickly. The good news is that my friend and I decided to take it easy for the 10K and save our legs for the half the next day. I think this decision made it so much more enjoyable. It was kind of like we were just hanging out, doing a 10K.

The last three-ish miles are through Epcot and the Boardwalk area. It was so much more fun to be able to do this part of the race. It was still kind of dark when we entered the World Showcase part of the park. All the countries were lit up and Spaceship Earth was glowing :) There was also some music playing. This was probably my favorite part of the course. After the World Showcase we crossed over to the Boardwalk. I couldn't believe how quickly the race was going. I decided to stop at mile marker 5 for a picture with Nemo. There were some spots for photos with characters throughout the race, but they were always so busy. This was one of the only non-busy mile markers. Plus it was on the sand so I decided to stop.

Mile 5
After Nemo we only had a little over a mile left. We soon crossed back over into Epcot, ran across the park, around Spaceship Earth, saw some large Little Mermaid puppets, then turned the corner and saw the finish line. I collected my medal and my snacks. It was super fun to complete my first Disney race. Like I said I was really liking the 10K distance and our approach to the race. The first three miles could have been a little more exciting entertainment wise. Overall, though I really liked this race! I'm excited to tell you all about my half marathon experience next. Stay tuned.
Finish Line
Walt Disney World 10K medals

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