Top 10 runDisney Princess Half Marathon Tips

The runDisney princess half marathon is one of my favorite races. It’s a fun girls weekend where you get some new bling at the end. What could be better? That being said, being prepared can make or break your experience, so I am here to offer some of my best tips for running this race. Good luck!

runDisney princess half tips

 

1. Know the course. If you plan properly, you will know where the hilly overpasses are, where you can use a “real” bathroom on the course, and where the aid stations and med tents are located. Knowing this information can help you plan your fueling and pace for the event, and make you feel more at ease on race morning. I always try to wait to use the bathroom in the Magic Kingdom, and time my fuel around the free gel station that is on the back half of the course. Know what flavors are offered (I always opt for the vanilla, it tastes like frosting!) and make sure ahead of time that it won’t upset your stomach. The overpasses that will hurt are on the back half, once being a big loop around that can be killer on your IT bands, so take it slow. There are also a couple of hills as you come into EPCOT so make sure you have enough steam left to get up them!

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2. Arrive early. Not only will you have to wait for a bus or wait in traffic in your own car, but you will have to walk a long ways to get to the starting line, and then wait some more to use the bathroom before the race. I know as it is you have to wake up at an ungodly hour just to be there on time, but plan for some extra cushion just in case. No one wants to be stressed out and rushing! Buses stop running at 4:00 am (ugh I know right?) But I always plan to be on a bus somewhere around 3:45. Sometimes there will be long lines depending on if one just left your resort or not, so don’t expect to just walk right on. When you are dropped off, you will have to walk a ways to get to the family reunion area, then you may have to stand in line to check your bag. Tip on the bathrooms: If there are long lines at the family reunions area, wait until you walk to your corral. There will be more of them outside of the corral area, and the lines usually aren’t as long. (Also better to go at the last minute instead of an hour before the start if you ask me!)

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3. Wear a costume, and wear it on a practice run. I have worn tutu’s and running skirts for all of the Princess weekend races I have participated in, and it was a BLAST. Other people recognizing your costume or cheering for your “character” is a lot of fun. However, I was careful to run around the house beforehand to see if there were any chafing issues, rubbing spots or uncomfortable things about my costume. (Fun mental picture eh?) You don’t want to be miserable for 13.1 miles in a costume that isn’t agreeing with you. TIP for tutus: Wear a running skirt underneath as opposed to shorts. that way, strands from the tutu won’t get caught in between your legs for 13.1 miles. TIP for tiaras: Get the kind with a comb attached and wear a running headband over the top of the comb to “secure” it to your head. Works like a charm!

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Tip: Did you know you can buy a runDisney magic band? I love this pink one!

 

4. Bring your camera or cell phone for pictures. There are a ton of photo opportunities before, during, and after the race, so don’t miss out! Some people put their phone in an armband or fuel belt, but I just carry mine the whole race so I can quickly snap a photo whenever I want. I have even been known to tweet and Instagram mid race! TIP: If you purchase Disney’s memory maker or are an annual passholder, you can get photos taken by photopass photographers for FREE when you download them from your My Disney experience app. Keep in mind not all characters have a professional photographer at them though, which is when your phone/camera can come in handy.

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5. Enter the correct proof of time. runDisney is cracking down on proof of time. You won’t be able to change it at the expo, and it will be checked against your race results to ensure you are in the correct corral. This is for everyone’s safety and enjoyment, and to help with overcrowding. If your time is found to be incorrect on your proof, you may be put in a back corral. Don’t risk it and lie about your time! Sign up fro a race in enough time before the cutoff for submission to get your time down to what you want. Also don’t think you will be able to just jump into another corral. Disney had volunteers at the front of every corral checking bibs and they will turn you away. I have seen people try to jump over the gates and injure themselves just to get into a better corral (For reals. Like blood and everything). Not worth it!

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6. Plan for the finish. If you have family waiting for you, tell them not to crowd the finish line area where runners exit, (it’s really hard for an exhausted runner to move through crowds of people. We just want to sit down, so please give us some space and we will love you for it!) but to meet you in the family reunion area at one of the signs with a letter on it. There are a LOT of people in a small area after the race and sometimes cell phones won’t work due to the hoards of people, so have a meeting spot planned ahead of time.

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7.) Be careful with your packing: I always pack my complete race outfit in my carry on bag, and organize things with labeled ziploc bags if needed. I never check my race day outfit on the plane, and just wear my running shoes so I know I at least have those. I also lay out everything the night before including breakfast, room key, gels, etc. so I am not fumbling around looking for a tiara or socks at 3 AM on race day. That wake up time is early, so every minute is precious! (TIP: download my FREE Princess packing list printable to make sure you don’t forget anything important!)

8.) Get some sleep: As mentioned before, that wake up time is brutal. Start preparing your body a few days in advance by trying to go to bed 15-30 minutes early every night for a few nights prior to race day. I try to be in bed by 7:00 the night before at least winding down, and asleep by 8. I know that’s tough because you want to do all the Disney things, but your body will thank you for it the next day! Not just for the early wake up, but for hanging out in the parks after the race. It’s so much fun to wear your medal around, and you don’t want to miss it because you had to take a four hour nap!

9.) Enjoy the Epxo: The expo can get a little wild and crazy, but it’s a lot of fun so be sure to stick around! Make sure you bring a copy of your signed waiver (yes they have printers there where you can get one printed out, but to save time just go ahead and bring it) and a photo ID so you can get your bib. REMINDER: you must pick up your own bib. Go get your bib first, then your shirt, then spend some time enjoying the expo. There are some great vendors, freebies, photo ops, and merchandise. runDisney merchandise will sell out, so if you have your heart set on something in particular, get there early. If you don’t care to buy anything, I suggest NOT going first thing in the morning. If you let the initial rush/crowds die down, you won’t have to fight through as many people.

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10: Have fun! I know this seems like a given, but be sure to not let the logistics of the race, any fear of the unknown, or stress about your time stop you from having fun. Remember that by even toeing the starting line, you are doing something the vast majority of the population will never do, so celebrate and enjoy! You deserve it! Congrats on getting to the runDisney Princess half weekend!

If you are interested in tracking your fitness or any health goals, be sure to get check out my free printable to help you achieve your goals!

QOTD: Did you or will you be signing up for the runDisney Princess half? What princess would you run as if you were to participate?

RELATED: Sign up for my FREE My Disney Experience and Magic Bands E-Course

*More info on the runDisney Princess half on rundisney.com

runDisney Star Wars Race Comes to Walt Disney World!

Yes, you read that right! After hearing some buzzing and rumors for awhile, the newest runDisney race has been officially announced! a runDisney Stars Wars race comes to Walt Disney World!

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The weekend of April 14-17th, may the force be with you as you run through Walt Disney World meeting some of your favorite characters along the way. The theme for this race weekend is “the dark side”, with the Disneyland race being called “the light side”. There will be kids races, a 5k, 10k, half marathon, and of course a challenge! The course sounds awesome, taking runners through EPCOT, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and ending at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.

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More information can be found in the official press release:

April 14-17 event in Florida joins Star Wars-themed race at Disneyland Resort and features new Kessel Run Challenge and Dark Side Challenge

 

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL (Aug. 25, 2015) – runDisney is summoning the Force today to announce another Star Wars-inspired intergalactic journey, this time to the dark side.

The “Star Wars Half Marathon – the Dark Side” enters the galaxy April 14-17, 2016, at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and pays homage to the dark side forces of the Star Wars universe. This new race follows the debut of the popular Star Wars-themed race at Disneyland Resort, which will return in January as the “Star Wars Half Marathon – the Light Side”.

“Ever since we launched the Star Wars race at Disneyland Resort, runners have been clamoring for more, so we’re thrilled to bring the Star Wars franchise together with the runDisney brand to Walt Disney World Resort,’’ said Maribeth Bisienere, senior vice president of Disney Sports Enterprises. “If the inaugural Star Wars race at Disneyland Resort is any indication, this new running adventure to the dark side is sure to be the out-of-this-world experience that runners have come to expect at runDisney events.’’

The new Star Wars race at Walt Disney World Resort will be a journey of personal achievement all its own, involving kids’ races, a 5K and a 10K in addition to the half marathon, plus a variety of Star Wars experiences, medals, events and merchandise inspired by a galaxy far, far away. Among its many features will be a unique 13.1-mile course that propels runners through Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios and finishes at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. There will also be a Star Wars Dark Side Challenge — running the 10K and the half marathon on consecutive days – that offers each finisher a Death Star-themed medal.

Jedi and Sith Lords who dare to experience both Star Wars races will have the chance to take on the Kessel Run Challenge — completing the Star Wars half marathon missions on both coasts. Kessel Run Challenge runners can earn a commemorative “Coast to Coast” medal inspired by the Millennium Falcon starship. Race registration opens Sept. 22 at www.runDisney.com.

 

The addition of this second Star Wars race continues the recent wave of significant growth and popularity of runDisney events domestically and internationally. This is the second new runDisney race announced for 2016, joining the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Weekend (Sept. 23-25 at Disneyland Paris), and the fourth addition to the runDisney series in the last two years (Star Wars Half Marathon at Disneyland Jan. 2015 and Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend Nov. 2014).

Each year more than 200,000 runners sign up for runDisney events, which often sell out in record time.

“We are committed to creating extraordinary experiences and events that appeal to runners of all ages and attract even more fans of our various brands and franchises to the sport of running, creating opportunities for them to live a healthier and more active lifestyle,’’ said Bisienere.

 

QOTD: Do you plan to try to run this new race?

runDisney Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Information

runDisney has finally released some information about the inaugural Disneyland Paris race! The press release hit my inbox this morning, and I immediately read through it as quickly as possible.

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This new race is going to be a three day affair including a 5k, half marathon, and kids races! There will also be a pasta party, and of course a health and fitness expo packed full with speakers, information, and vendors.

The race weekend will take place September 23-25, 2016, and packages for travel can be booked beginning October 6th 2015. (It appears individual registrations will go on sale at the beginning of January, 2016).

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Based on some information on the website, it also appears there will be an all new challenge with this race! The adorable name is the “Castle to Chateau challenge”, and includes a special medal is you participate in the Disneyland Paris half as well as a half marathon at either Walt Disney World or Disneyland, in the same calendar year.

OK runDisney, you have piqued my interest yet again. How do you keep doing this to me? Now I must see the medals and want to run all the races! If I hear more information about the race I will be sure to share it with you. For now, you can see below for the official press release and calendar of events:

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The new Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Weekend will be a three-day race weekend that includes a variety of events for runners and fans to experience the theme parks like never before when it debuts in the City of Light on Sept. 23-25, 2016.

The inaugural race weekend in Paris will include fun kids’ races for children of all ages, a 5K course through Disneyland Paris and a scenic half-marathon course through two Disneyland Paris theme parks and the countryside villages that surround the Disney Parks.

In addition to the races, the Paris event, runDisney’s first at a Disney Park outside of the United States, will also offer several family-friendly events, including a pre-race Pasta Party the night before the half marathon where runners can “carb up’’ for the race. There will also be a runDisney Health and Fitness Expo throughout the weekend where runners pick up race packets, shop for the latest running apparel and technology and attend a speaker series involving leading industry experts.

While running through the theme parks and the countryside villages, runners will have the opportunity to meet beloved Disney characters and experience legendary Disney entertainment along the course. And commemorative medals await runners at the finish line.

Race packages go on sale on October 6, 2015.

“We could not be more excited about the upcoming runDisney event,’’ said Tom Wolber, President of Euro Disney S.A.S. “It will make Disneyland Paris the world’s third Disney destination to host this successful sporting series that offers a whole new running experience for the young and young-at-heart.’’

For more information about the race weekend, visit www.run.disneylandparis.com.

Schedule of Events

runDisney Health and Fitness Expo

Sept. 23-24, 2016

runDisney Kids Races

Sept. 24, 2016

Pasta in the Park Party

Sept. 24, 2016

Disneyland Paris 5K

Sept. 24, 2016

Inaugural Disneyland Paris Half Marathon

Sept. 25, 2016

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QOTD: Thoughts on the race and the challenge? Who plans to run?

 

*Photos used with permission from Disney Sports

runDisney Expedition Everest Challenge 2015

I have participated in all of the east coast runDisney races. Up until this year, I had done them all except the runDisney Expedition Everest Challenge.

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The Everest Challenge has always been somewhat of a mystery to me….”So you run..and there are clues…and it’s a scavenger hunt…and there are obstacles?” All super confusing and there isn’t a lot of information out there about it. I decided to record us running parts of the race to help explain it better. Sadly though, this was the last year they did the race so it’s kind of a moo point now (any FRIENDS fans in the house? The point is MOO!)

Anyway, Here is a recap, video, and then my final thoughts at the bottom.

Jen and I were staying at Caribbean Beach resort which was a host hotel for the event. The race started at 10:00, so we hopped on a bus about 8:30ish. We arrived at Animal Kingdom around 9:00, and there were a bunch of folks milling about in the parking lot. We decided to not check our bags just yet since we had so much time, and asked a friendly runner to take a photo of us.

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I was checking my phone and reading Facebook when I saw there was an earthquake very close to my house. Huh? I quickly called Bobby to see what was going on. He said he felt several rumbles but had no idea it was an earthquake. Crazy! Never have we felt one in Mississippi before. Luckily, Emma Kate had slept through it.

Anyway, after hanging out a bit longer we decided to check our bags and hit the bathrooms before getting into our corral. Bag check was easy and smooth, and we even found port-o-potties with no line. Always an amazing thing to find at a runDisney race, and a very rare one at that! We made our way over to corral B and listened to the DJ and hung out until it was time to start.

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We were waiting on our corral’s turn to go when one of the announcers came down into the crowd. I was thinking “please don’t come talk to me” in my head when of course he walks right over to us, asks our names etc. and if we were running as a team.

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It was finally time for us to go, and off we went through the parking lot. I didn’t take a lot of pictures because I was busy taking videos.

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The hay bales were the first obstacle and they were in the parking lot. We made it over those and headed into the park. The second obstacle was crawling under a net, and this was right near the turn around in the park. Going back out into the parking lot, we found the last obstacle, and ran through the tires before making it to the finish line. The course was short, around 2.8 miles. We were given water and cooling towels along with our first clue. We also got a sharpie and a mini flashlight. We walked to the next clue station as we tried to figure out clue number one. It was a tough on!

We got it though then headed to clue two, which we TOTALLY were overthinking. Once we asked a volunteer about it, she helped us make sense of it and NOT overthink it, and we were able to solve it and continue on.

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We got three and four pretty quickly, and then got our final clue. It was a word search that involved the answers to all the previous clues, and told us to find the hidden yeti on a clue card. Again, we were over thinking it and COULD NOT figure it out! We were getting really frustrated and then I finally found the little guy. We ended up mainly walking from clue to clue because we weren’t trying to place or anything.

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You had to hold up your final answer at the last checkpoint in order to make it through to the finish line.

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Here we are sitting on the ground trying to solve the last clue.

We finished the race, and got our really cool medals.

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We headed all the way back into the park for the after party, it was tricky trying to get to the party when there were still runners and hunters on the course.

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There were food stands and the like open, and there was a DJ and some characters out dancing. Some of the rides were open too, but we were really tired so we took a couple of pictures and headed to the bus.

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Who recognizes Slim? I had never seen him out before!

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We also saw this guy who was a dance machine!

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Leaving the park was very difficult because the path was narrow, and most people were just coming INTO the party as we were leaving, so it was like trying to swim upstream trying to get around all the people going in the opposite direction. We made it back to the resort after midnight and hit the hay. Another race complete!

Final Thoughts:

As I mentioned before, I had always been so curious about this race. I have been thinking a lot about what to say about it so I will do my best to put it into words. The race was a GREAT idea in theory, but I felt like it was seriously lacking in execution. Because everyone is running at a different pace and the corrals are staggered out, when we came through with our first clue there were still runners going by. Everyone was running into each other and it was kind of chaotic. They had signage telling runners to stay to one side etc. but people were not following directions. There was one point we literally had to cross over the lane of runners to get to the other side and it was like playing Frogger. That coupled with the darkness in the park and people reading the clues as they were walking and not paying attention to where they were going, it was kind of dangerous.

The volunteers were great, they even had some characters on the course, but I just feel like it could be done in a different way. I’m not saying I have any idea how to change it for the better, but it just didn’t flow very smoothly if that makes sense. Some people were confused about running the 5k first then doing the hunt, and were trying to get clues the first time around the park. Also, with the after party being in Dinoland, we ended up having to enter the park three separate times that night. Also, like I said, it was confusing trying to walk to the party while there were still runners coming through.

I hate that they got rid of the only family/scavenger hunt event because I can see how kids would be all over this thing, it had a fun family atmosphere for sure. Maybe a different park? Maybe in the daylight? Maybe not have the 5k cross paths with the hunt portion? I’m not sure what the answer is, but I do hope they introduce something similar for families with better logistics. Oh, also some of the clues were really hard, and one was even written incorrectly and was throwing people off.

I loved running through the part, the volunteers were great, there were two water stops, and the medal is really really fun, but I can see why it is being discontinued. Oh, also the obstacles were optional, so for the people “racing” to place, they could have skipped them and gained several minutes (the net obstacle took a while to get through). We were in corral B so there were no lines at the obstacles, but I can imagine in the further back corrals there would be a back up of people.

If anyone has any questions about the event I would be happy to answer. I am so glad I finally had the chance to participate and get the compass medal! I hope you enjoy my video and I hope it helps explain the race a little better.

 

 

QOTD: Have you ever run a scavenger hunt race? Thoughts on this one? Do you hope they reintroduce something similar?

For more information on runDisney races, visit runDisney.com

runDisney Princess Half Marathon 2015

A couple of weeks ago, I ran in my 4th runDisney Princess half marathon. Jen and I had been planning our outfits for years, and finally got the chance to be Anastasia and Drizella, Cinderella’s Stepsisters.

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My alarm went off at 2:15, and I was planning to leave my room at 3:15. Hey, fake eyelashes take some time to put on!

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We got our skirts from Rock City Skirts, our tops from Running Skirts, and we made the rest!

When we got to the start of the race, I got to meet up with some new and old friends, like Megan!

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and Karen

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The sisters ready to go!

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Aren’t we pretty? haha

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We made the long walk to our corral, and had about five minutes to spare before the first wave went off. We got closer and closer, and then it was time to go!

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Since I was dealing with tendonitis, and Jen had just had a stomach virus, we decided to take it nice and slow, take a bunch of pictures, and just have fun…and fun did we have!

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We talked and talked, the miles flew by, and soon we were getting close to the  Magic Kingdom!

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We stopped at the TTC to use the “real” bathrooms, and saw Jen’s husband there! Surprise! We stopped to talk to him for a minute and soon were on our way.

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It was starting to get light out, and although it was humid, the temperature was better than it has been in years past.

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We then made it to my favorite part of the race, turning down Main street where we had our first glimpse of the beautiful castle!

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We were actually kind of surprised about the lack of characters. We saw the tweedles, buzz lightyear, and then some Frozen characters on top of the castle before running through it. There were no princesses by new fantasyland sadly.

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On the other side of the castle, we stopped for another picture before heading into Frontierland. We passed where Princess Tiana usually is (there were no characters there this year).IMG_3110 (2)

Jen needed another bathroom break, so I waited for her outside and stretched and took a photo of the runners headed towards us

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We passed the line for Woody, and were a bit confused, this was the Princess half marathon and we had yet to be able to take a photo with a princess! On our way out of the Magic Kingdom, we finally got our wish! We had to stand in a long long line to get it (everyone else probably had the same idea about wanting a photo with a princess during the PRINCESS half, go figure), so we had plenty of time to plan our photo. We decided to run up to and fawn all over the prince and ignore Snow White. They both loved it and told us we were very funny and did a good job. Snow decided to “give us a moment” and step out of the picture. They were great!

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About this time we ran into some blog friends Carrie and Kristen, and ran with them for a bit before parting ways at a stop we knew we had to make near the Wedding Pavilion.

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We “fought” over the glass slipper and I think it made for a super cute picture! After passing the Grand Floridian, the rest of the course was just running. We realized we were running straight into the sun and neither of us brought sunglasses, whoops! We made it to the CLIF stop, and did some run walking in those later miles as needed.

We made the overpass loop and headed toward EPCOT and there were some really cute signs lining the road.

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Finally we saw big beautiful Spaceship earth in the morning light, we were almost there!

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But not before a couple of more stops! I don’t really consider Sofia a “princess stop” but I guess she technically counts? Hey, we were going to take what we could get.

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We also saw this lovely lady and asked her to help us get to the ball.

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We looped around to the other side of Spaceship earth, and could hear the gospel choir singing.

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A couple more turns, and we were in the home stretch of the finish line! Done! We finished in 3:02:04. By far one of my slowest races, but we definitely had a blast doing it! I have always told Jen how much fun it is to stop and take pictures during a runDisney race and just goof off, and I am so glad we were finally able to do it together.

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We ran into Karen at the finish as well!

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My new beautiful bling. Loved the silver!

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Final thoughts:

This had always been one of my favorite races, but honestly, the characters are getting a bit monotonous. The same ones were out in the exact same spots as they have been for the past three years. I love the course itself, but really wish runDisney would mix up the characters and the placements. Running the PRINCESS half marathon I thought we would see at least 3-4 princesses on course, but only seeing one was disappointing. I know Belle was in the family reunion area, but literally her line was about 100 people deep when I went by headed to the buses.

As usual, runDisney gets an A+ in organization, expo, signage, volunteers, fuel stops, med tents, transportation, and the like. Really my only complaint is the character issue.

This is a great race especially for a first timer looking for a no pressure but fun “girls weekend” type event, and it will always hold a special place in my heart. Thanks for another great race weekend runDisney!

QOTD: Have you ever run in costume?

runDisney Disneyland Half Marathon Registration

It’s finally time to register for the runDisney Disneyland half marathon! Today, at noon EST, you can sign up at rundisney.com to take part in this amazing weekend. This is one of my favorite races, and the first time I ever visited Disneyland was when I ran it in 2012. I had hoped to be able to come back for 2015, but my money tree hasn’t started producing anything yet. Smile

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However I am stoked to let you in on a few details that have been released and get you pumped up for registration day! This particular year is a special one, because it’s the 10th anniversary of the race. As if runDisney medals weren’t cool enough, there will be a special commemorative 10 year one placed around your neck after you cross the finish line.

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2012 medals

Also, there will be a special party, see below, taken from the official press release:

“… a special Disneyland Half Marathon Annual party.  This private, ticketed event, held Thursday evening Sept 3, will give guests access to select attractions, Disney entertainment and character meet & greets in Disneyland Park West Side.”

How fun! Oh, you need even more to celebrate? How about the newly-announced 60th Anniversary Diamond Celebration? The special party will offer an exclusive viewing of the new “Paint the Night” parade!

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This weekend promises to be jam packed with fun from the health and fitness expo, to the kids races, and the 5k, 10k, and half marathon. Also, I DARE you to sign up for the Dumbo Double Dare race challenge!

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2013 Dumbo Double Dare

Good luck and happy registering! See below for full event schedule:

Event Schedule:
Disneyland Half Marathon Anniversary Party
Thursday, Sept. 3, 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Disneyland Family Fun Run 5K
Friday, Sept. 4, 5:30 a.m.

Disneyland 10K
Saturday, Sept.5, 5:30 a.m.

 

runDisney Kids Races
Saturday, Sept. 5, 9 a.m.

Disneyland Half Marathon
Sunday, Sept. 6, 5:30 a.m.

 

Disneyland Health & Fitness Expo
Thursday, Sept. 3, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 4, 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 5, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Remember, registration opens at noon. Do NOT wait! This anniversary year is going to sell out fast!

QOTD: Will you be signing up this year? Have you ever been to Disneyland?

runDisney Princess Half Runner Meet and Greet

Since I posted a photo on Instagram about some tips for the runDisney Princess half marathon yesterday, I have had several people ask me if I would be hosting a meet up like I have done before.

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The thought has crossed my mind but honestly, I have been so busy with the baby and work that I haven’t had time to put much thought into it. I know that not only is it a race, but a lot of people’s vacation, so taking time out to go to a meet up can be hard, so I am actually planning on two things, hoping to get to meet some of you! You can of course come to both, but I wanted to give a couple of options where you can meet some other bloggers or just other runDisney lovers and we can chat, take some photos and get excited about the race! I may have a couple of giveaways at the meet up as well. Smile

Here is what I am thinking:

Saturday, February 21st

Downtown Disney, outside of Ghirardelli Ice Cream 6:15ish.

I figure this is a good spot since there is no park ticket required, and it’s early enough that you can still get to sleep early for the half the next day. Besides, who doesn’t love a little pre race ice cream? Delicious! I will wait outside until 6:30 to give everyone a chance to get there, then we can head in and get some pre race fuel.

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Karen and I getting ice cream in 2009. We look so young! She will be at the meet up, too!

Sunday, February 22nd

Pre race 4:15/4:30 am, outside of the Race Retreat tent

I will be there at 4:00 (hopefully haha) to take a team runDisney photo with my friends from the Facebook group, and I will be hanging around afterwards in the area in front of the race retreat tent until time to go to the corrals. I would love to see everyone’s costumes before the race and say good luck to some new friends!

If you have always wanted to meet some like minded runners and Disney fans, this could be a great way to get to know some folks in a small, non intimidating setting. (If you are nervous you can stand back and watch and see that I don’t bite, then come join the fun when you are ready!)

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Also I will be at the expo Friday afternoon (not sure on exact time) if anyone wants to meet up for a quick hi! I will be posting to Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook during the week so I will post when I get to the expo and the other meet ups!

QOTD: Have you ever been to a meet up with other bloggers or runners? How did it go?

Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5k

The Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5k took place yesterday morning on Disney’s beautiful private island. Over 700 runners took to the beautiful course surrounded by lush tropical landscape, rolling waves, and an island breeze (well, some days!)

Any cruise that sails to the island has had a 5k in recent years, but this is the first time you could run a runDisney race in Walt Disney World, the follow immediately with a Disney Cruise Line cruise. If you completed a race at WDW and the Castaway 5k, you would also get the challenge medal, which is absolutely beautiful! (Please note you have to register for this challenge!)

Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5K Event on Disney Cruise Line Private Island

The cruise is on the beautiful Disney Dream, for four nights as it sails to the Bahamas. The ship left from Port Canaveral, FL on Monday. Runners also have access to special speakers, merchandise, and activities all surrounding the Castaway Challenge.

Inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge 5K Event on Disney Cruise Line Private Island

There will be another Castaway Cay Challenge 5k following on the heels of the runDisney Princess half marathon weekend next month. Space is still available for this challenge, check out runDisney.com for details on registration.

I do hope runDisney and Disney Cruise Line continue this partnership with more races, as I would love to be able to participate! Who doesn’t want to relax on a Bahamian cruise after running hard at a runDisney event?

QOTD: What are your thoughts on this challenge? Is this something you would like to participate in?

Looking Ahead to the runDisney Princess Half

Now that the runDisney marathon weekend is over, it’s time to look on to the next event, which is one that I get to be a part of! After a long year of not being in my happy place, I finally get to go back and run the princess half marathon again! I won’t be doing the glass slipper challenge or 5k this year though. My past few Disney trips have involved multiple races and lots of early wake ups, and honestly this mama is tired and just wants to enjoy Walt Disney World and run one race. I’m sure I will be thinking otherwise once I see everyone’s bling from the other races though.

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Funny story about the below pic from Princess 2014. After I crossed the finish line with my husband and parents with a shout out from the announcers, I got a text from announcer Carissa. Apparently, our fellow buddy and announcer Rudy was curious if I was pregnant or not. I was shocked because well, I WAS pregnant but we weren’t telling people yet, so the fact that someone could tell scared the crap out of me! I told her that he was right and SWORE both of them to secrecy! I also told him he was lucky he was right or else I would have felt really bad about myself if I wasn’t pregnant.

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Bobby and I will be staying for a week, at Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside which is one of my favorite resorts. I am excited to eat good food, see lots of my running friends, and run through the castle again. Our flights, hotel and rental car are booked (oh yes, we rent a car because I loathe Disney buses), so now the countdown is on. I still have a half marathon to run between now and then, and a lot more training to do as well.

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To get you pumped up about the race, check out some of my old recaps below:

Princess Half Marathon 2012

Tangled Royal Family 5k

Royal Family 5k

Princess Half Marathon 2013

Royal Family 5k 2014

Enchanted 10k 2014

Princess Half Marathon 2014

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A lot of people ask me what my favorite runDisney race is, and honestly, it changes! Princess is definitely up there though, something about all the fun and girli-ness of this race is just really exciting! We had thought about taking the baby with us, but decided against it. She will be spending good quality time with both grandmothers here at our house, and Bobby and I will get an actual vacation. Let’s face it, it won’t be much of a vacation with a five month old!

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I hope some of you will be there and that I will get to meet you! I LOVE chatting with other runners, especially runDisney runners, so let’s get excited! The countdown is on!

*Also check out my tips for running Princess!

QOTD: Are you running a runDisney race this year?

runDisney Marathon Weekend Last Minute Tips

I know many of you are traveling down to Walt Disney World this week for the runDisney marathon weekend. Congrats! I know when I was first planning for marathon weekend my first time in 2010, I had a ton of questions and wanted to soak up as many race recaps and as much information as I possibly could.

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I thought I would do my best to try and help you by putting it all in one place. I hope you have a magical week/weekend and come back with some great stories and photos!

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Tips for the Dopey Challenge

Marathon weekend packing list vlog

Tips for running a runDisney race

5 reasons to run a runDisney race

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You can find all of my marathon weekend race recaps (along with others) on my runDisney page. I hope they pump you up and get you excited for a new adventure!

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QOTD: Best runDisney tip? Anything you are looking forward to most?