I am not a runner. However, for some strange reason, I decided I should put running a half marathon on my bucket list. So I did and that’s when I first started to runDisney!
I signed up for the Princess Half Marathon the day registration opened up on the runDisney website. I had never done anything but walk a few 5k’s in my life with friends and family so as you can imagine, I started having major feelings of panic as soon as I clicked finish on my runDisney registration. Thankfully, I somehow convinced three of my sweet best friends to run this runDisney Princess Half Marathon with me. Well okay, I forgot to mention, they are ALL actually runner people. I always wanted to be one of those runner people, but I just never understood the point of running. Now if Tom Hiddleston (Loki) was at the finish line with a cupcake? Yes I would have been running a very long time ago.
Oh and the #1 reason I picked this Run Disney race? Wearing a costume. Yep! You see, our family loves to dress up in a costume. For Halloween, for our yearly Christmas card, whatever! My girlfriends said I could pick whatever costume I wanted to so I decided to go a little rogue. Not Star Wars rogue, but rogue as in out of the box. Instead of picking a Disney princess themed costume, I chose the Mousketeers from the Mickey Mouse Club. My Husband made our t-shirts (MySmartShirt.com) and my dear friend Ashley, who was running with me, did the rest!
The #2 reason? You get to run through one of the Walt Disney World Parks before the parks open. Since this was a half marathon, our course included Epcot and the Magic Kingdom.
And the #3 reason? There are Disney character and photo opps everywhere!
The runDisney website has so many training tips, helpful hints, and basically anything and everything you need to know to run one of their races. By the time the runDisney Princess Half Marathon came around, I was ready. Well, as ready as I thought I could be. I just knew I had to stay ahead of the balloon ladies. The who you ask? Yep, as long as you stay in front of the balloon ladies you won’t get swept up is what I heard. Say what???!! There are women/men with Mickey balloons tied to their waist that walk/run at the back of the race. They run/walk the slowest pace allowed and if you fall behind them by a certain time, you will be escorted onto a transportation bus to the end of the race. They do this because if not, people like me would be slowly crawling through the Magic Kingdom while guests are trying to enjoy their magical day in the parks!
On the morning of the race, I was nervous. I was also excited. There were so many runner people. How could I do this? I had my besties with me but oh my goodness, this all seemed so daunting. But the energy in the air was palpable! I was ready!
Before we got into position, we decided to use the restroom facility, aka the port-o-potty, one more time. On the way to said port-o-potty. I fell. You read correctly, I FELL! Not only did I fall, but I also sprained my ankle. Now at the time, I didn’t know it was an actual sprain, I just knew it was bad. My besties said not to worry, we could leave and there would be no judgment. I said NO WAY! We started running and wow,it was so painful. I stopped at one of the many medic tents and had a Doctor look at it and yep, it was sprained. They wrapped it and said I could stop. My friends continued with their support but I said I am not stopping. I told them it would make for a much better story if I ran an ENTIRE HALF MARATHON on a sprained ankle and so I continued. Anything for a good story right?! I cried most of the time, took a few breaks, walked alot, but I refused to give up. I even saw the balloon ladies many a time but I always stayed ahead of them. I was not going to be swept up. I was going to finish.
And. I. Did!
I ran the Run Disney Princess Half Marathon on a sprained ankle! I got my medal and I, of course, cried like a baby. It is one of the single greatest moments of my life and I got to share it with three of my best friends. My mousketeers. I even face-timed my Husband and our daughters as I was running through the Magic Kingdom. It was AMAZING! Sprained ankle and all.
It was so amazing that my teenage daughter and I then did the runDisney Star Wars Rival Run 10k the following year and now our whole family is running the Disney Princess 5k this Friday and the next day my seven-year-old daughter is running the one-mile Disney Princess Kids Race presented by GoGo Squeez, the official applesauce of Walt Disney World.
All of this to say, you CAN do it! You can do a runDisney race! You don’t have to be a runner person either, you just have to have a little faith, trust and pixie dust. Oh and some good running shoes.
XO Cindy

Leave a Reply

The Main Street Mouse