I happened upon a piece that I wrote after running the Minnie Marathon (15K) last year. I had such a wonderful experience and thoroughly enjoyed my first experience of “magic of Disney” at a race event. It was one of the few races I ran by myself and I wrote this to share my experience with my running friends. In fact, this race inspired me to run in the Disney half-marathon the following year (which became the Unofficial Goofy Challenge) and also taught me a valuable lesson: Always run with your camera.
Enjoy this blast from the past!
Originally written May 4, 2008
Minnie came out to greet us and to wish us luck. With her squeaky voice, she told us “If you dream it, then you can do it”. I never knew how profound Minnie was!
Fireworks signaled the start of the race and as usual, there were many walkers to maneuver past. UGH! But, it was all very exhilarating and exciting and a truly emotional race for me. I wish you all were there to share the experience with me.
We ran from Animal Kingdom through the parking lot and out onto the main roads. The first stretch was the hardest because there were lots of inclines and overpasses or as I like to call them “highway hills”.
Then about the 4 miles mark, we started heading into Hollywood Studios through the cast member entrance. We ran through the backstage areas and then all of sudden, we were running through downtown NYC. It was the most bizarre feeling! I was staring at the Empire State Building as I ran past a subway entrance. I felt like I ran the NY marathon! LOL
As we ran through the park, the cast members cheered us on. Mulan and Mushu cheered for us and I couldn’t resist to give Mushu a high-five.
When we exited the park, the next stretch took us through the Swan and Dolphin Resort and the Boardwalk Vacation Club. That was the most scenic stretch! It was so picturesque. As the sun began to rise, it reflected on the lake and it was such a beautiful sight. The guests at the resorts came out to cheer and clap for us. It was a great feeling.
Then, the final stretch took us through the World Showcase in Epcot. Once again, the cast members cheered for us. I got my second wind in the last mile and really booked it to the finish line and as usual I smiled the entire time. Although, this race really got to me and I was very emotional about the whole experience. My eyes kept welling up with tears and I am not a crier. I guess I finally absorbed how hard I have worked and I am really proud of myself. Jackie and Lori e-mailed this morning with words of encouragement and I just cried. You don’t know how much that meant to me. O.k. I have to stop now. The waterworks are starting up again.
Chip time – 1:28:12.