A perfect day to remember a hot long run...Its a snow day here, overnight snow, sleet, ice and now rain...What a mess! In reality and what does to my week!
Ahh..what a weekend. Walt Disney Disneyworld 20th Anniversary Marathon, 1-13-2013! It was day two of running at Disney. The Disneyworld Half Marathon ran the day before. My mom did my proud and ran a great race and finished strong.
My race started at 5:30am sunday. Up at 2:45am, on the shuttle bus at 3:40am, made it to the start corral at 5:15. Crazy traffic slowed the busses. There I waited with at least 25,000 of my fellow runners.
I was excited, no nerves at this point. Just lets do this! In Disney fashion the race started with a bang, of fireworks in front of us and behind.
The first 6 miles into Magic Kingdom, was an almost identical course to the Princess Half I ran in 2011. Feeling excited and strong past entertainment and characters, I didn't snap any photos. I was steady on a pace a tiny bit faster than my long training runs, but feeling great.
Thru the castle is the highlight of Magic Kingdom, even my second time thru was awesome. Out of Magic Kingdom, we lapped around Disney's Nascar track. Filled with old cars, Disney's cars and fans we ran a full lap on the track. Amazing how small that lap looks, but it was close to a mile long.
Out onto the roads, headed to animal Kingdom. For the second quarter of the race, I was feeling strong. Still right on track for my goal. The sun was up in the sky but still low, we were still in the shade- for now!
Almost mile 13- We entered into the back of Animal Kingdom, by the safari ride. We made our way to the front of the park, past the Tree of Life. I was loving every step. I did have to take my first stop. Bathroom break along with many other runner friends. Sadly I was in line for 5+ minutes...There went that goal time! Thats ok!
Around thru the rest of Animal Kingdom as the sun was creeping higher and higher.
I slowed down enough to snap a few more pics of a few dinos for my boys..I knew my goal time was no longer obtainable, 5 minutes to make up in the second half in the hot sun in my first half=not going to happen!
So I made lemonade out of those lemons...paused to take pics with the guys I liked or sights I wanted to remember....Chip and Dale were down a slight unseen slope- I almost fell over and they caught me as the camera clicked!
About mile 15 the sun hit "hot". It was a April like morning in January, temps already in the low 70s at 7 am with very high humidity and rising for the rest of the race. Hot running for me used to midwest winter!
Mile 17 delivered ice cold sponges. I have never had such a place in my heart for a cold clean sponge. It was a moment of heaven!
Mile 18-19 My wall! Every marathoner I've talked to has shared stories of the wall they hit on the first marathon. Most stories I heard were usually mile 20, 21..not 18! But it was warm and I knew my mom was somewhere along this mile. I struggled thru it. My slowest mile. When I saw her at almost 19, I was crying immediately, and having trouble catching my breath. I was hot, and emotionally overwhelmed. She was the right person to be there for me! She had runner pep talk, daughter pep talk, and hugs, love, support. I stayed with her for a few minutes and ran off. Other supporters cheered for me like crazy as I ran off, by my name. They witnessed my emotions and I thank them for their cheers! Mom says I took off strong.
We ran thru ESPN's Sport Complex. The track, around the outside of the baseball field to mile 20 which Disney had promised a surprise. It was a huge spot of characters and this fun new balloon.
The next two miles were back into the hot sun headed to Hollywood Studios. I "ran/walk". I walked .1 miles at every water stop. My pace had slowed a little more. It was hot!
We made our way thru the Studios, the park was open early and a few supported had made their way inside.
Exiting Hollywood Studios we ran the Disney Boardwalk past a few hotels headed to the finish at Epcot. My legs were tired, begging me to stop. My body was hot. I could scrape salt off any part of my body! My head was asking why did I do this. My hand said "believe". My mom and I got tattoos handed at the expo. Random tattoos handed out. Wow I needed that word! I stared at it, with every doubt or question!
I was walking a little more, but knew I was going to finish. Somewhere along this spot, my dear running friend from AZ woke up. She was supposed to have run the race with me, but sadly injured her foot. I started receiving texts from her and others cheering me on. Ahh strength found, sort of.
My iPod sweated out at about Mile 25.
My knee was giving me weird tinges, a trip thru the medic tent for some biofreeze, and I was good! I should have done that sooner!
At last we entered Epcot. We ran all the way around the world Disney style, exited the front gates of Epcot. Fan support from the boardwalk thru Epcot was wall to wall people cheering! Oh what support. Thanks to them!
Thru the front gates, .1 mile to go!
I knew again my mom was here somewhere. Don't look. Don't look. I said that too myself over and over. Not sure what would happen to my strength if I saw Mom. Then I heard "Go Kristin". The runner right in front of me yelled "Thanks" . What that wasn't for me? I said to the runner next to me, "How sad, I'm Kristin too" The first Kristin yelled back, she didn't recognize the voice. Me either.
Then it was across the finish line. I DID IT! ahh immediate tears. 26.2 miles! I ran a marathon!
I was slower than I hoped. It was harder than I thought. It was much hotter and humid than I wanted. But I did it. And I did I crossed the finish line with this many people's bling still to go!
After the race tears and hugs...ouch! I called it "self inflicted child labor leg jumps." My legs were jumping just like after each child. Ice and carrot cake to make that feel better!
Now I'm sure I left out lots of details (like me trying chocolate at mile 22 and spitting it out- I am not a chocolate fan normally, why did I think I would be then?).
Looking back post two weeks another 15 miles under my belt since...I am so glad I did it. But kind of like childbirth, during training and the race I said never again. Now, its already to a maybe someday, and am already signed up for another Disney challenge-Dumbo Dare- a 19.3 mile two day adventure in August!
Now..back to our snow day..no miles today :(