Monday, January 17, 2011

2011 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

The race report I posted a few days ago seems fairly accurate, if brief. So I thought I'd post some memories of the weekend, rather than a full report a week later.

First, my wife and I swore we would not do the 2012 WDW Marathon, but as we sat on he bus to the race start on Saturday for the half I looked at her and said "We're going to do this next year, aren't we?" So we've decided that yes, we'll be back. Whether I do the Goofy again isn't clear yet, but my wife will do the half and I'll do at least the full.

I'd like us, with our son, to try the 5k since he enjoyed the Kid's Race a lot, but that may be too long of a distance for a 6 year-old to walk without carrying him for some distance. He will at least do another Kid's Race, as he's already asked about it. Next year we will make sure that we register early enough to do the Friday race. He did the Saturday race, which was a bit of a logistical nightmare to get myself and my wife from the finish of the half back to the resort and then over to Disney's Wide World of Sports in time for the race. We made it fine, although my wife scrambled to get to the race area at the back of DWWOS. He enjoyed the race and so did I, even though I had to run with him!

This year, our niece came down with us to watch our son, primarily during the packet pickup and expo and Saturday morning while we both ran the half. It was great having someone else to help keep him busy and allow us to get our packets, check out the expo, and get to the start of the half without worry. She was a real trooper and she said she had a good time, which is good as we'll ask her to go down with us again next year, if she can.

Random thoughts on the races: Running with friends rocks! I don't train with my wife and rarely run with anyone else, so I'm not used to running partners, but I had good friends to run both the half and full. Stan and I ran both races and Josh joined us on Sunday. These guys kept my paces in the right range, which directly contributed to the PR I got in the full. I really enjoyed running with them and I hope to race with them again next year.

There seemed to be more characters out on the course this year, including a few I'd never seen before: Launchpad McQuack from Ducktales and Chicken Little and Abby. I think that Disney did a great job keeping the runners' spirits up this year. Last year the cold made racing tough, I can't imagine how the folks lining the course must have felt. This year we had perfect running weather both days and everyone-racers, volunteers, spectators-all seemed to enjoy themselves.

Walking around Epcot with four medals Sunday after the race was great, so many people congratulate you that it feels like those medals are weightless. When I went to meet my wife and son after the race Sunday, I took the boat from Boardwalk over to International Gateway (I was a bit tired by then!) and as I got on the boat with my clanking medals, everyone on the boat cheered for me. I was not expecting that at all and I felt really proud of what I'd done with my races.

What's ahead for this year? I plan on running the Twin Cities Marathon in October. My wife and I are considering doing the Disneyland Half in September to get our Coast to Coast medals. I plan on stretching my training this year to prep for a BQ race as early as next year, too. Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

2011 Walt Disney World Marathon weekend

Four days after Sunday's marathon and I'm already in the post-marathon blues. This past weekend I ran the Goofy Challenge with good friends, in great running weather, and at paces that I hoped to do. The trip could not have gone any better in my mind. I was only 5 minutes off my half-marathon PR and that after deciding not to push during the race. I set a new marathon PR by 8 minutes and felt pretty good after the race. Yet, I miss seeing my friends and, as always, I miss being at Walt Disney World. I'll have a more comprehensive race weekend report up very soon, but I wanted to get a brief post out now that I'm back home.

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Brief note before WDW Marathon

I plan on writing a more complete post about my training the last month or so before we head down to WDW. Have a few thoughts about training for a marathon during the winter, the impact a lack of stretching has on my progress, and what's next after the races are done. As we say at work, more to come.

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