19.3 miles = unlimited magic.
But before I could earn that, I had to earn this:
Yup, not too shabby for a fun run, if I do say so myself! But let’s back it up again…to the morning of September 1, 2013…
Still flying high over the magic of the Disneyland 10K, I woke up refreshed and surprisingly relaxed. I was rooming with my pal Ashley and when my alarm went off at 3:45 AM, she was already up and prepping!
I had laid out my race clothes the night before (my ritual) and so all I had to do was change out of my PJs really…woot to a low maintenance morning! I pared down all my options in anticipation of the high humidity (short socks, no armwarmers, etc) and was sure to apply sufficient Body Glide to avoid any chafing, and popped my new sunglasses (that I had purchased at a gift shop the night before, since the ones I brought had broken) and was ready to head toward the starting area!
Ashley and I had planned to walk, but as we exited the hotel, we saw a shuttle…why not? We found a spot quickly, and I unwrapped my mini CLIF bar and munched quietly in the darkened bus.
Once we got to property, we walked in the big herd of people heading to the staging area. We ran into a lot of fun people along the way:
It was definitely humid, but the temperature was pretty low, so I wasn’t worried about the run. I knew I was hydrated, wasn’t gunning for a PR, and had already decided that I’d walk through every water stop. Additionally, I was going to run the race as a training run, and therefore tuck away my iPhone and keep a strong pace (~8:40).
Well, I am proud to say that I made that goal (I finished in 1:52:57) which meant that I held a 8:37 pace through the run…a definitely positive. The only negative in that is that, well, it makes for a pretty short recap post! But fear not, I will share a few pics captured along the course (I plan on ordering quite a few actually):
…and of course, cheesin’ with my finisher’s medal:
The outfit choice was PERFECT for this event, both fashionably and functionally: Sparkle Athletic skirt and visor, along with a plain running tank that I found at Marshall’s. The ‘costume’ aspect was enough to feel in theme with the event, but lightweight and ready-to-run with, which I feel helped me achieve the goal I had that day.
I have said it once, but I will say it again: this half marathon is my favorite! It was my 10th half – and only the second race that I have ever repeated (see this page for past race recaps), as I had ran it in 2011 as the second half of my first Coast to Coast Challenge.
I really wish I had more insightful things to say about this race, but the truth is, it was all a happy blur. While some people say that the course is boring (other than through the parks), I find it to have the appropriate level of spectators, stimulation and magic to keep me moving and focused. I love the change of terrain on the Santa Ana Trail, the roar of the crowd in the Angel Stadium, the excited feeling of seeing street signs direct you back to the Disneyland Resort, and of course, hitting that finish line and hearing Carisa announce your name!
I don’t know when I’ll try for another half marathon PR (my current/old one still stands) but that really didn’t even enter my mind that day – I just felt so darn happy to have had the chance to run Disneyland again.
There’s just something about it…
What’s your favorite race/event? Why?