Thursday, March 15, 2012

Disney Princess Weekend Recap – …..after the race….

Disney Princess Weekend Recap – 2012 Princess Half Marathon
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – Royal Family 5K
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – The Expo
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – Pasta in the Park Party

If you’ve missed any other Princess Weekend recaps, see the links above! This will be the 5th and final installment of my Princess Weekend recap!! :0)

After the race, we made our way to the monorail to shower/change at the Grand!


13.1 Princess Half Finishers!!

We showered, changed, then hit up the Magic Kingdom!! Our first meal after our half marathon was terribly bad for us but tasted oh so yummy! We had lunch at Pinocchio's!


Oh what I’d give for another Disney pizza!!

After eating, we walked around for a little while, rode Pirates, Haunted Mansion, etc.  After a few hours, Heather and her mom left the MK to take a nap. I was tired but not enough to crash, so my mom and I continued on to Tomorrowland! We saw the Carousel of Progress and the Tomorrowland Transit Authority. We also rode Buzz and my mom managed to kick my tail. How that happened, I have no clue.


(Our obligatory Photo Pass picture in front of the castle before leaving for our hotel!)

Back in the room, we got ready for dinner at 1900 Park Fare. Heather had the hilarious idea that we should all wear our Tutu’s and our Tiaras to dinner.


So we did! Aren’t we cute?! Hah!

During appetizers in the lounge, we saw a very familiar face. Jeff Galloway!! If you are a runner and familiar with the run/walk program, then you’ve probably heard of him.

He was SO nice…he came over to our table and congratulated us all on our races and told us how great of a job we did, etc.


We asked to take a picture with him and he agreed. I was so excited I couldn’t contain myself! Jeff Galloway truly is a very nice guy!! It was a pleasure talking with him and I thought it was so cool that he approached us!

After saying goodbye to Jeff, we walked over to 1900 Park Fare and were seated pretty quickly for dinner!




We met Cinderella…


….and Prince Charming……


….then Heather scared the POO out of one of the Stepsisters, so she left our table and I can’t remember if she ever came back! It was hilarious!


The other Stepsister didn’t appreciate Heather’s shenanigans, but she stayed for a picture at least!


I couldn’t decide on dessert so I had a bite of everything!  Hah!!


Strawberry soup….one of my favorite things about 1900 Park Fare….and the Disney Cruise Line!

After dinner, we shopped around for a little while and listened to Christian! He played a gorgeous Les Miserables medley that I picked up on right away! Later on in the evening, I told him how much I loved it! He is SO nice – he smiled and told me thank you – and never missed a beat on the keys! A truly talented musician!

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After a loooong day and a lot of food, we were a tad bit delirious.


Can’t you tell?

Hey, at least we were having fun!! :0)

Thanks so much for following along in my Half Marathon journey!! Stay tuned for a Full Marathon update – Rock and Roll New Orleans!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

2012 Disney Princess Weekend Recap – Princess Half Marathon

Incase you missed it, here’s my other Princess Weekend Recaps:
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – Royal Family 5K
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – The Expo
Disney Princess Weekend Recap – Pasta in the Park Party

Sunday morning, the morning of the Princess  Half came early once again!


Dressed and ready to go! Heather, her mom, and I put on our tutus and tiaras and made our way to the bus stop!


The line for the bus stop was GINORMOUS - but believe it or not, the line moved super fast and we were on the bus before we knew it!


We made it to the family reunion area and it was dark as usual (since Disney races are so early in the morning…)

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First things first – I found a former youth pastor’s wife who was running her first half! I love(d) these guys to death and still try to visit with them every time we make our way to Florida! She did GREAT on her first half and I can’t wait to hear about her future races!!


I attempted to find something to keep me warm – mostly to keep the wind from blowing on me. Run Disney had a few large signs around the area near we were standing so I used one of the signs to block the wind. Brrrr!


Before long (thankfully), we heard the announcer telling us it was time to walk to the start line. Thousands of runners began their journey down a very very very congested (did I mention very) road to the start line. At one point, we came to a dead stop. This was my 4th Disney race and in all that time I’ve never had this problem occur. We figured out that Disney put port-a-potties along the road and the lines for the port-a-potties were blocking traffic! Whoopsie!


This scene made me laugh – for Marathon weekend (aka when a whole lot of guys are involved), it’s hard to see the tree line because the men are lined up along the trees doing their business. I took a picture like this during my first Disney race in 2010. To see this tree line mostly empty cracked me up!


We finally made it to Corral B! Yay!


We were in our corral for maybe 5 minutes when the announcement was made for race start!


The Fairy Godmother wished us all a magical race!


Here we go!

Keep min mind, this race was meant to be a fun race for us. We weren’t trying to PR at all -  our main goal? Take as many character pictures as time allowed!!


We saw Pirates….ARRRGH!

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….and Princes….LOTS of Princes!


We ran into a few Evil Villains….


….and before we knew it, we were headed into the MK!


Wait a second…we are only at mile 4?? Yeah, it pretty much took us a whole hour just to make it 4 miles. Darn characters….


At the Ticket and Transportation Center!


These guys were really neat!


After running through the TTC, we came upon IT….the dreaded HILL. This is the only hill I actually remembered (I was wrong…there are a few others). I think I walked up most of this one. However, conquering THAT hill meant we were one step closer to the Magic Kingdom!!!

Regarding my knee – it ached for the first 2 miles of this race. I have no idea what made it stop, but after the 2nd character photo, it quit hurting! It pretty much stayed pain free until we were out of the Magic Kingdom! Woohoo!

Sometime before the Magic Kingdom, the comment was made that someone needed a potty stop! I suggested we wait until Tomorrowland where we could use real bathrooms! Shh…don’t let our secret out!


We ran through the cast member parking lot and there it was!!!


Could you imagine driving into work every morning with this view?!


Before I knew it, we were THERE…Main Street! This has to be one of my favorite parts of any Disney race. It’s such a magical moment!!

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Pascal is still hanging on! I  heard quite a few comments like, “Look! It’s the Princess and the Frog!”…or “Hey there’s Tiana!” I’m sorry people, but if you know your Disney movies, you know that Tiana wears GREEN. Thank you. I end my case.

Remember that potty stop?


Yeah, that’s the DUDE’s bathroom and it’s full of chicks! Hahah! Sorry guys – that’s what you get for running a Princess race!


We found these guys hanging out around Fantasyland so we stopped for a picture!


The new Fantasyland construction! Can’t wait to see it all complete!


Prince Charming! I heard rumors that Cinderella was with him at one point. Some Princess must have taken her away….

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This Elvis guy was cracking me up!!!

We passed up Mickey and Minnie because the line was HUGE!


Here we come!!


Running through the Castle is pretty amazing!  Last January, I was mostly concerned about getting a good picture with the castle behind me. Mission: accomplished. I don’t think I’m ever going to find a race photo that I like one again! So this time, I didn’t even attempt a decent Castle picture! Ah well!


See?! Tiana = GREEN. Thank you.


Woody!  We just missed Jessie but that’s ok!


I loved these CM’s outside of Frontierland! Their signs were too cute!

Our fun time in the MK had come to an end! We ran out of the MK along the parade route and came up to a HUGE line! Usually, this line is Jack Sparrow and the Pirate Ship. I’ve never stopped in this line because it’s always so long.

This time, it was Sleeping Beauty, the Prince, and the Fairy Godmothers. Remember our goal? Get as many character pics as possible. We decided to stop….


We waited….and waited….and waited…..

I started looking at the bib #’s of the runners passing us by. I noticed Corral G in the mix. Corral G?! Holy cow what time was it?! I realized it took us about 2 hours to make it to 6 miles. Wow.


Lots of runners behind the scenes at the MK!


We took our picture then started to haul BOOTY!!!

As we ran along the back roads, we started to weave between runners and pick up speed and my knee quickly told me that it didn’t like our plan. It started to seize up. I couldn’t bend it, I couldn’t “walk it off”….everything hurt. So much for making up for lost time. Oh well.


Before long, we found Bell and the Beast and Gaston! The Cast Member wasn’t going to let us stand in line at first but Heather convinced her to let us get in line. Actually, a really nice runner agreed to give up her spot to Heather – that’s when the CM decided to let a few extra runners in line.

When we asked the CM what her reasoning was, she said that the Characters were leaving to get ready for their normal day activities. I became a little disturbed by this. Disney races are expensive. I pay to run them but I also pay for the character experiences. I think it’s only fair to keep the characters out for 90% of the race. Hello…..22,000 runners PAID for them. Find another Belle to work the early mornings in the parks. Thank you.


Ok rant over! Here I am with Belle and the Beast and Gaston!!


I LOVED this guy’s sign! We spotted him a few times around the race course!


Cliff shots were somewhere around Mile 8! I grabbed a Mocha! Yum!


I loved these little old people! Too cute!


Something else that was cute – this grandma with her little fairy wings! She walked the entire race with her granddaughter! He granddaughter would turn around every few steps and say “Come on grandma!” It was adorable!!!


After continuing our walk/run for a while, my knee pain turned into a dull ache. It never seized up after that first episode thank goodness!! I used BioFreeze a few times and that was my saving grace! I LOVE BioFreeze. EVERY RACE should take note of BioFreeze and keep it in their medic tents!!


The Epcot signs were becoming more frequent now which meant only one thing – we were getting close rand closer to the end of the race!

Remember that 2nd hill I said I forgot about?

Well, here it is!! We had to run UP a giant sideways overpass. Oh my goodness.


It wasn’t too terrible – we made it at least!


Pascal was still hanging out, even after 11 miles!!  Hi Mrs. Kathy!! :0)


My traditional Mile 12 photo!


Finally – there it was! The Epcot ball!!


We ran through Epcot, through Future World and around to the exit!


The Gospel Choir was there to cheer us on!


Mile 13!! Yay! Just a little more to go!

I knew my mom would be somewhere along the finish line so I kept an eye out for her. She took 2 pictures, then started to yell at us – in what I gathered was a cheer. I was so confused as to what was going on – why was she yelling (cheering) instead of snapping pictures? I still don’t know! Haha!

Anyway, none of her pictures came out – ah well.


We saw the finish line and I yelled WAIT! Heather and Mrs. Kathy must have thought I was CRAZY but I saw MICKEY! HELLO it’s MICKEY!


We stopped running, met up with Mickey for a quick picture, then continued our journey for the finish line!!

Our finish line video cracks me up! We were running towards the finish line with an abrupt stop for Mickey, then we threw our hands in the air and finished the race!

4 hours later….my LONGEST half marathon to date! Yay!!


We did it and we had a BLAST!!!


Even during my very first Disney race in 2010 (the dreaded freeze…anyone remember?), I stopped for character pictures. The characters are what MAKE a Disney race!! You can’t run a Disney race without having a little fun along the way…even if it is sleeting and it’s 32 degrees outside! :0)

So there’s my take on the Disney Princess Half Marathon! So far, it’s #1 on my list as my favorite Disney race!! I had a great time and really enjoyed myself! I would make a special trip to Disney World to run Princess again!!

Thanks for following along! :0)

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