DisneyWorld Half Marathon

Last year,
I did the DisneyWorld Half Marathon
My Second Disney Race
My first at DisneyWorld
and the first on my Coast to Coast Journey!
Here is the trip report I wrote after my trip
with my beautiful cousin, Rachel!

We left Thursday evening and drove to Seattle
Tickets were about $200-250 per person cheaper
So figured it was worth $500 to drive up there
Our flight left at 1am on Friday morning
We had a layover in Minneapolis
Then onto Orlando
We had the seat between us empty on this flight,
so we actually got a little sleep 🙂
Probably almost 3 hrs of sleep total (from both flights)
We arrived there around 11:30am Friday East Coast time
Got on the Magical Express which took us to the Pop Century Hotel
Our room was in the 50’s area
(last time, we stayed in the 70’s)
with the Bowling pin pool from our window
our hotel
Took quick showers and changed clothes, grabbed some sandwiches from the food court,
and hopped on a bus to the Expo to get our race packets
I had never been to the ESPN World of Sports Center before
There were LOTS of people there
but getting our packets wasn’t too bad
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

DisneyWorld Half Marathon Expo

But the expo center was PACKED!
I was surprised that it was a smaller expo than Disneyland Half,
or so it seemed
Disneyland there was more room/booths/etc.
I was getting a bit overwhelmed with the sheer amount of people in that room!
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

DisneyWorld Half Marathon Expo crowds

We didn’t stay too long
long enough to get our goodie bags (with our race shirts)
Buy our Coast to Coast shirts
Sign up for the Disneyland Half Marathon
where they gave us special coast to coast backpacks for FREE!
While we were signing up, I looked over and
Olympian Jeff Galloway, was just standing there
I wasn’t sure it was him because I assumed he would have a HUGE line around him
so Rachel and I walked over to him,
got pictures and chatted with him
I use his walk/run method 🙂
He is a tiny man
I think my arm was bigger than him!
I was SO excited to meet him!!
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

Jeff Galloway and Me!! DisneyWorld Half Marathon Expo

After the expo
We dropped our goodies off at our hotel and head to the Magic Kingdom
We walked to the Contemporary Resort
Where we had dinner with Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, and Pluto
It was one of my FAVORITE meals when we were there last December
and it was just a DELICIOUS this time!
It was fun with all the characters
We had a GREAT time!
I am glad we indulged in going 🙂
Rachel also got to see Cinderella’s castle all lit up with the Christmas lights
which is an awesome site
After Chef Mickey,
We headed to Downtown Disney to get gifts for the kids
The BIGGEST complaint about Disneyworld
 is that it takes FOREVER to get anywhere 😛
Disneyland is MUCH nicer about that because it is all so close together and you can just walk!
Anyway, I think we ended up back at the hotel and in bed around 9pm
I called Joseph and the kids
I had been doing fine – better than I thought
leaving them for the weekend
But when the 18 month old
 got on the phone and was like
“momma, momma”
It made me cry!
I had a hard time getting to sleep
Which I didn’t think I would, since I had VERY little sleep on the planes
excitement for the race
and anxiety being away from my family
We got ready and headed for the bus
at 3:30am (we had to be on a bus between 3-4am)
The line was REALLY long for the bus
but they were EXCELLENT
and it moved REALLY fast
because they had LOTS of buses
Disney KNOWS how to do this!
We got dropped off at Epcot and made our way to the corrals
At these big races there always seems to be like a mile just to get the start line 😛
We saw a guy peeing in the bushes on the way there
Even though there were literally HUNDREDS of porta potties
We got to our corral and actually didn’t have to wait too long for it to start
It started at 5:30am
FIREWORKS went off!
We weren’t expecting that, but it was AWESOME!
There were 3 people dressed as Peter Pan, Captain Hook, and Tinkerbell
They were all guys!
There guys in kilts
a guy dressed as Tarzan – no shirt, just a loin cloth and a monkey on his back
So MANY costumes
More than Disneyland Half, I think!
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

DisneyWorld Half Marathon

waiting for it to start!
I think we got started around 6am
It was a bit cold
Perfect for running I think
but I should have had gloves because my fingers were FROZEN!
They did fireworks for EACH corral start!
Around mile 1, there were TONS of guys peeing in the bushes
I have never experienced this in my other races!
No wonder they do women focused races 😛
There were TONS of porta poties though!
(the website showed OVER 22,000 finishers!!)
I attempted, right before the 5k mark
to stop and take a picture of the Magic Kingdom sign
Well, my fingers were so cold/frozen,
I couldn’t use the buttons through the running band
so I took it out, but I still wasn’t able to get my fingers to push the phone buttons properly
I did eventually get the picture
and it took me forever to get it back in the arm band because my fingers were just not working right 😛
I WOULD have had a record 5k time for me
but I wasted at LEAST 3-4 minutes on the stupid picture
My 5k time was 37 minutes
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

DisneyWorld Half Marathon – running through the parking lots!

Running into the Magic Kingdom was AMAZING and Magical!
I was so excited to run down main street and through Tomorrowland,
then Fantasyland, through Cinderella’s Castle
and out through Fronteirland.
It was just so much fun to run through!!
In front of the Cinderella’s Castle
They had characters everywhere
including Darkwing Duck
Who I have NEVER seen at the parks before!
DisneyWorld Half Marathon
They had these stilt walkers a couple different places on the race
there were BRAVE to let all these people run around them!!
I was crying when I crossed the finish line
I finished and this and it had been a long planned event/want of mine to do
The nice thing about the Disneyworld race compared to Disneyland
is you are on Disney property the entire time,
so the entertainment/landscape is nicer
than just seeing Anaheim 😛
DisneyWorld Half Marathon

DisneyWorld Half Marathon Medal

I got my medal
Stood in a line for like 10 minutes to get food
(I have NO freaking idea why it took so long!)
then wondered around, trying to get a phone line,
and figure out where the family meet area was because it wasn’t clearly marked
so it took another 10 or so minutes to find Rachel 😛
The line for the bus back to the hotel was long
but again, it went FAST – lots of buses to get the job done quick!
Got back to the hotel
took hot shower
 we both laid down for a rest
(I couldn’t fall asleep – what is wrong with me?!?!)
We packed up
Got some lunch in the hotel food court
and boarded the magical express back to the airport
I had NEVER sat on the tarmac until this flights
(considering I have been on like 100 flights!)
They told us it was because the air traffic into Atlanta was too busy?
Whatever, they should KNOW that when planning flights 😛
So we sat there a little over a half an hour on the taxi way just waiting
We were worried about missing our connecting flight
we only had an hour layover
We got into Atlanta about 11 minutes late (according to the pilot)
and then there was no one on the jet way to open our plane door,
so it took another few minutes just to start to get people off
and we were in the BACK of the plane
When we got off, we found our flight
and BOOKED it over to the next terminal
There was luckily a train waiting!
We made it to the gate just as they started to board!
We made it into Seattle a half an hour early
Got the car and started on the trek home
got some Arby’s for dinner
since we hadn’t eaten since lunch east coast time and it was now 10pm west coast!
There was some BAD fog on the way home!!
But there was hardly any traffic
and Rachel just drove slowly and carefully
and we made it home
a half an hour earlier than I had planned even 🙂
Left late Thursday night from Oregon
got back VERY late Saturday night
(or maybe it was early morning on Sunday?)
Basically a 48 hr journey!
So it was a once in a lifetime, whirlwind trip
I am so glad Rachel could go with me
and we could fulfill this Disney dream together
I would LOVE to do it again one year
just not when I have little kids
(too hard on this mommy to be away from them!!)
But seriously, other than that
it was an absolutely fantastic trip
full of lots of memories
and I am so happy and grateful I could do this
especially with Rachel 🙂
Happy 30th Birthday’s to us!
Rachel MADE these!! Aren’t they AWESOME?!?
My Race Shirt, my Coast to Coast Shirt, my medal, button, and Coast to Coast backpack!
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