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Walt Disney World Marathon - RunMarathon

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Orlando, Florida
United States
Walt Disney World
Total Time = 4h 07m 24s
Overall Rank = 1641/12964
Age Group = F30-34
Age Group Rank = 69/999
Pre-race routine:

I really didn't know whether I was going to race or not until I woke up that morning and put my running clothes on. Me, Jeff, and Betsy got dressed and headed to 7-11, then drove to the Epcot parking lot. I think I listened to The New Pornographers on the way there. I needed some time in my own head to process what I was about to do and what a stupid idea it was.
Event warmup:

Found some BTers, listened to some more music, walked to our corral. Jeff and Betsy got in my corral so we could all run together and we just hung out forever until the race started. Luckily I have had nice warm weather both years I have done this race, unlike Aaron and Haley who had to freeze their asses off in 2006!
  • 4h 07m 24s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 09m 26s  min/mile

The first mile I was in a lot of pain and I was freaking out, hating myself for being so stupid. But then it went away and I calmed down a bit. From there it was just a perfect race. Jeff, Betsy, and I ran the first 6 miles together through Epcot before Jeff decided to go ahead. I know how he was feeling since the same thing had happened to me the day before - running at a pace that is much slower than your regular training pace can be really hard on your legs.
After Jeff left us, Betsy and I just ran at my normal training pace and tried to make up a few seconds every mile in the hopes that BEST CASE SCENARIO we would average below 10 minute pace for the race. That was my stretch goal!I had no expectations that I could hold a sub 10:00 pace for the whole race since I had done the half marathon the day before and wasn't trained for a marathon.So we just kept going and I kept feeling awesome and each mile went by with a little more time made up until soon enough we had time in the bank! We took gels (I hadn't brought any nutrition with me but found an espresso gel on the ground, lol!!!) at about mile 10, I think. Then we took another at the first gel station. I turned into superwoman after that gel. I remember they were playing Blink 182 on the speakers and I got totally pumped and energized. I think this was the section that goes by the waste treatment plant and I just felt SO good. We got passed by the 4:15 pace group here but they stayed within our sight until Animal Kingdom. We stopped to pee in Animal Kingdom again and Betsy was having a lot of problems with her knee. Once we left AK and got out into the parking lot Betsy told me to go ahead and I did! I caught the 4:15 pace group and never looked back. I never bonked, I never felt bad, I never hit a wall. It was a very similar experience to Sunmart where I kept expecting it to get hard and it never did. My legs felt light and fast, I was relaxed, I felt invincible. Running with Betsy was totally awesome. We had a lot of fun and enjoyed the course, but I think the most wonderful part of the race for me was at about mile 20-23 where I just felt amazing and kept picking up the pace and had a HUGE grin on my face. This is the point on the road where the out and back section is and most people hate this part, but I was in such a great place mentally and physically that I loved every second of it. I needed vaseline and called for it but they couldn't get it for me in time as I ran by so they waited for me in the middle of the road as I came back from the out and back and gave it to me...those volunteers were awesome! The whole race was so well organized and FUN. I hear lots of complaints about running the Disney races but I really enjoy them. As I headed toward MGM I felt the heat a little bit but just kept going.
I was so happy to get a candy bar at that first aid station in MGM!! Last year we were so slow that they had run out by the time we got there! I was finally feeling some HURT because I was running around 8 minute miles. I was passing people constantly and finally one lady passed me, so I jumped on her tail. She asked me if we were going to break 4 hours and I told her it would be more like 4:05. She said we HAD to beat 4 hours and wanted me to go fast with her, so I got in front and tried to keep up a good pace for her even though I knew there was no way we could break 4 hours. We took turns pacing each other but then she faded and I went on without her, but that was the most challenging part of the race and I enjoyed it a lot. I was working very hard, again just like at Sunmart when I ran with Trixie and our last 10 miles were the fastest of the race, my faster 1/2 of the race was the second half, and in that second half I ran faster for the last 6 miles than I did for the first, so I really negative split the race and that makes a huge difference mentally. I like to be feeling good and picking up the pace instead of just trying to hold on to a hard pace set too early.
The last part of the course through Epcot seemed to last forever but I kept at it and thought of the gospel choir waiting for me. This is my favorite part of the race, the choir at mile 26. Passed them and got goose-bumps and kicked it the last bit. I felt so happy and emotional from accomplishing something I didn't think I was capable of. I was proud, I was elated, it was wonderful.
Some other things: the day before I had really messed up my leg and the arch of my foot and realized that it was plantar fasciitis. Went to The Stick booth at the expo and talked to a nice guy there who gave me some advice on what to do for it so I cold run the marathon. Betsy and Gina felt like my shoes were the problem and Gina took the orthotics out of her shoes and put them in mine so I had some arch support. I ran in those orthotics, which of course is a crazy thing to do, but they worked and I really felt like my legs were getting better the more I ran and the faster I went! I am still sore in the calf and arch area, but it is not NEARLY as bad as it was after the half on Saturday. A HUGE thank you to Betsy and Gina for their help and advice!
I stopped my watch during the two bathroom breaks so I would know what my time was without stops...4:05:24 and the Garmin says 26.64, which is a 9:13 pace.
This was a double PR day...PR for half marathon distance and for marathon distance. WOW!
Post race
Warm down:

Crossed the line with a huge smile, got my chip removed, and got some ice wrapped around my calf. Got my medal and went straight to the Goofy tent. Last year I did Goofy as well, but this year was different. I felt like I deserved it this year and I couldn't wait to get my Goofy medal. Last year I went SUPER slow for both races, and it was great because we helped two people complete their first half/full marathons. This year it was for ME - because I had it in me to do it at a decent pace this year - because I am a better athlete. And for that I was proud and felt like I deserved that darn Goofy medal. Got my picture taken, bypassed the food tent because it sucked, and found Jeff. I had some food in my dry clothes bag that I ate. We hung out till Betsy came in a few minutes later, then we left. Showers were taken, pancakes were eaten, and then I left for the airport.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Not training for a marathon and running 13.1 miles the day before.

Event comments:

I love the Goofy Challenge and will do it again next year, for the third year in a row. It may stink to get up at 3 AM, to stand outside for 2 hours before the race starts, to run so many miles on boring roads and through hot parking lots, but I still think Disney races are great. I love the fireworks in the beginning, I love the music and the theme parks and the crowds. I love running under the Sphere in Epcot when it is still dark out. And I love them medals.
This year they gave the Goofy Challenge people a shirt, which they haven't done in the past. They also improved the Goofy medal and it actually looks like Goofy now. The marathon medal this year was great, too. This was the 15th year for the Disney Marathon, so they had a special medal. I think it's the best medal I have ever gotten.
I had a great weekend and am still on cloud nine!

Last updated: 2008-01-14 12:00 AM
04:07:24 | 26.2 miles | 09m 26s  min/mile
Age Group: 69/999
Overall: 1641/12964
Performance: Good
Mile 1: 9:56 Mile 2: 9:40 Mile 3: 10:57 (bathroom) Mile 4: 9:42 Mile 5: 9:49 Mile 6: 9:47 Mile 7: 9:34 Mile 8: 9:53 Mile 9: 9:33 Mile 10: 9:10 Mile 11: 9:27 Mile 12: 9:30 Mile 13: 9:23 Mile 14: 9:18 Mile 15: 9:19 Mile 16: 9:14 Mile 17: 9:56 Mile 18: 10:08 (bathroom) Mile 19: 8:58 Mile 20: 8:41 Mile 21: 8:31 Mile 22: 8:23 Mile 23: 8:22 Mile 24: 7:47 Mile 25: 8:02 Mile 26: 8:03
Course: Totally flat, goes through all 4 parks but is mostly though parking lots and on the roads between parks.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2008-01-14 10:12 PM

User image

Subject: Walt Disney World Marathon

2008-01-14 10:33 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2008-01-15 10:00 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Chelmsford, Massachusetts
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

It was sooooo awesome to see you so happy with your performance!  You did great!!!  So...which marathon are we gonna get ya that BQ at???

I had an awesome weekend with you and I can't wait to do it again!

2008-01-15 10:50 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Tiger's Den
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

What a wonderful race report. Sometimes I think it's better to go in with lower expectations and then surprise yourself. I've done that at my last 2 half marys and it's awesome.

You were smoking fast!! I love that you tried to help pace that lady and that you kept getting stronger as the day progressed. I hope that happens to me!


2008-01-15 10:55 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Queen BTich
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

I'm so proud of you! What an amazing race! People rarely have 'perfect' races and you've had 2 in a month!

Glad it wasn't cold. *hugs*

2008-01-15 12:43 PM
in reply to: #1156356

San mateo California
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Hey Babe. You truly rock...   Congratulations...  Are you doing it next year too?

2008-01-15 1:06 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Keller, Texas
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Yeah Jess!!  You are awesome!
2008-01-15 1:09 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Nashville, TN
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

She is HAWT...she is sexy...she is FAST.

 Congrats on the weekend!!!

2008-01-15 2:32 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Subject: ...
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Edited by betsy 2008-01-15 2:33 PM
2008-01-15 5:18 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Williamston, Michigan
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
congratson a great race Jess
2008-01-15 5:37 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Keller Tx
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
You had an amazing race!........Make that 2!

2008-01-15 8:33 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Fishers, Indiana
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Wow! What an awesome two-days for you! Incredible race and perseverance!! Awesome!
2008-01-15 9:16 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Wisconsin near the Twin Cities metro
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Great job!
2008-01-15 9:29 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

Super race Jess!

Rarely do I read a RR that finishes so strong..last miles were amazing...super job 

2008-01-16 7:40 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Boston, MA
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
CONGRATS! I am happy with your race performance, with your motivation and because you ended up in one piece with no pains or injuries.
2008-01-17 7:31 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
great race! 

2008-01-17 9:05 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Extreme Veteran
Cary, NC
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
what an absolutely awesome race!  it made me excited just to read it!    YOU ROCK GIRL!
2008-01-17 11:59 AM
in reply to: #1161527

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

Way to kick a$$, Jess! Man, you were smokin' in those last several miles. I'm now officially excited to run a marathon.



2008-01-17 12:37 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Extreme Veteran
Olathe, KS
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Wow, congratulations on two great races! Very impressive! The Goofy Challenge sounds like fun- I'd say you definitely earned those medals!
2008-01-17 9:35 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Extreme Veteran
Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Wow... you ran the half the day before and managed to essentially descend the marathon?!  That's pretty awesome.  Way to go!!! 
2008-01-17 11:20 PM
in reply to: #1156356

New user

Eastern USA
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Nice... nearly under 4 hours

2008-01-18 7:46 AM
in reply to: #1156356

Sous Mon Diadème
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon

Wow, Jess!  Fantastic race... but considering that you ran 13.1 the day before... it's phenomenal!  Congratulations.

2008-01-18 11:17 AM
in reply to: #1156356

South Jersey
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Really great job, Jess. Congrats on the PR ! I'm glad the foot issues from the day before didn't stop you !
2008-01-18 5:00 PM
in reply to: #1156356

Oak Park, IL
Subject: RE: Walt Disney World Marathon
Wow!  Amazing race.  Congrats.  I'm with you...absolutely love Disney races.  The volunteers were spectacular, well-stocked aid stations and just so much fun!  Totally agree that the post-race food needs some work.  
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