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Disneyland Half Marathon 2013 Recap

26 Sep

After the 10K the day before, I was feeling slightly better after a shower, so I headed on over to the parks for a little solo time. I checked out Splash Mountain, Matterhorn Bobsleds, and Radiator Springs Racers (again) before heading back to the room for a really early bedtime.

I loved the view of Space Mountain from Splash Mountain with the mountains in the background.

I really loved the outfits the characters wear in California Adventure. So “old Hollywood”.

After many, many hours of sleep, I awoke on Sunday morning still feeling sick but better than the day before. Once again, Mike and I took the shuttle over to the start area.

After a trip to the porta-potty, I ended up losing Mike, so I was on my own to find my corral. I think everyone who was there will agree that the corrals were an absolute nightmare. By the time we had gotten there, the corrals were filling up fast, and one of the staff members told me that corrals D & E were closed, and I’d have to go back to the very end of G. No way. I was feeling sick, and I needed a little cushion room to avoid being swept. I somehow did make it in to my corral though.

I decided that I would use 1/1 intervals (run 1 minute, walk 1 minute) for as long as I could.

The first mile or so was out on the streets near the Convention Center, and we made our way into the backside of California Adventure again and then through Disneyland at the third mile marker. We got a different tour of Disneyland this time, but it was still very crowded. Running etiquette was thrown out the window very early on. When using run/walk intervals, please alert those around you that you’re slowing to a walk and move as far over to the right as you can (at least when the course is narrow). I was getting very frustrated that I was feeling well enough to run, but I couldn’t because the walkways through Disneyland were too packed to pick up the pace. It was especially frustrating at the castle when we all came to a complete stop so 5 women across could stop and get their picture together. I know it’s a special race, but please think of others when you come to a complete dead stop. Move to the side or something.

We made our way out of Disneyland behind Mickey’s Toon Town and then on to some main roads of Anaheim for almost the rest of the half marathon (read as: after mile 4, be prepared for your standard road race with no entertainment).

Around the fifth mile marker, I stumbled upon my friend Janice and her group of friends. They were doing 30 second run/90 second walk intervals, which was fine with me because I wanted to slow down a bit, and I needed to be near people I knew because it was boring, and I still wasn’t feeling better. I stuck with them for 2 miles, and then I just couldn’t keep up with them. I was still able to do 30/90 intervals but at a much slower pace.

By mile 8, I decided I would just walk the rest. The sun was blaring right in my face, and the heat was unbearable. I feel like the water stations were pretty far apart, and I instantly regretted not bringing my Camelbak. It was around this time that we were near “The Pond” (the Anaheim Ducks ice rink/indoor arena) and on our way to the Angels baseball stadium.

disneyland half 8

In between the two, we had the distinct displeasure of running on a dirt trail that kicked up a lot of dust, and I really enjoyed the view of the homeless camp under the overpass. The smell of urine was quite a delicious scent while running a half marathon.

The run around the stadium was pretty cool. The stands were packed with encouraging spectators.

Sorry the pictures are blurry! I’m pretty sure the lens had my sweat on it.

I believe we reached the 10th mile marker right outside of the stadium, so it was a welcome relief to know that I only had a 5K left. I once again caught up with Janice and stuck with them for just a little while. We eventually wound up at the backside of California Adventure again and back to the Disneyland Hotel for the finish line!

I can’t even tell you why I struck that pose in almost every picture.

I was done! 9th half marathon in the books!

Running while sick was definitely worth earning 3 medals in one day.

It had been a goal of mine for four years to earn the Coast to Coast medal, a medal you receive for running a Disney race in Florida and a Disney race in California in one calendar year.

My results:

disneyland half results

A 16:08/mile pace.

Overall, this definitely wasn’t my favorite race. It was uncharacteristically hot and humid for LA (not run Disney’s fault), and the water stations were once again running out of water by the time I got to them. Like I said, after mile 4, there isn’t much entertainment. I suppose that’s not a big deal for front-of-the-packers, but if you’re like me and out there for over 3 hours, it can get rather boring. And it’s Disney… you expect course entertainment. I’m not sure I’d do this race again. We’ll see.

This race has definitely made me reevaluate my future with running. I haven’t run a good race in good health in a long time. I haven’t been well-trained for a race in a long time, and that’s completely my fault. I’ve consciously decided to run these races by just skating by and knowing I can beat the sweepers. I think I need to take a break, lose the weight, and come back to running refreshed and ready. I’m signed up for two full marathons in December and January, so we’ll see how I handle those races… if I decide to defer to the next year or whatever.

If you ran the Disneyland Half, what did you think? Link up your blog post in the comments!

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3 Responses to “Disneyland Half Marathon 2013 Recap”

  1. Lori September 26, 2013 at 9:34 pm #

    Love your recap. Maybe you are striking that same pose in ever picture to highlight your top, it’s really cute. I agree with most of your observations, particularly the one about how people need to move to the side when they come to a complete stop. That seems to be a phenomena that has been perfected at Disney races, where no one seems to care about race etiquette any more.

  2. Lexie September 26, 2013 at 11:32 pm #

    Hi Andrea,

    I think that it is a great idea for you to take a break. I was thinking the same thing. I think that you will come back refreshed and ready.

    Good luck!

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