The Tiarathon a.k.a. The Disney Princess Half Marathon is done. I flew home wearing this amazing , sparkly medal around my neck just because I can and as I flew home I began to reflect on what an amazing weekend it really was.
Of course they were princess-y type thoughts because it was, after all, the Disney princess Half Marathon.
- How fun and exciting it was to meet all the Shredheads who made it to the event at last face to face. We had spent the last year working towards a very personal, individual goal yet we all worked together. We loved to hate Jillian yet we were all proud to claim that, yes, we were her bitches. Our Friday meet-up at the Earl of Sandwich (order the tomato soup, OMG!) was so much fun. My regret is that it wasn’t in an area where we could truly enjoy quiet, intimate conversations. But I am thrilled to say that I am the proud owner of not one, but two pieces of Kristen’s son’s original magic marker art. Of course you all are jealous, as you should be.
- Our fearless Shredhead leaders, Kristen and Bill, make me feel rather short. I don’t feel that way very often.
- My camera is not that complicated to work. It just looks like it is. By the way, Stephanie’s husband took a great group photo of all of us showing off our Shredhead tech shirts. Thank you Omron GoSmart for providing the tech shirts and the pedometers to us.
- Y’all embarrassed me singing Happy Birthday but thank you. Thank you very much.
- I have to confess that us Cali Shredders, Kari and myself, slept twelve hours after the meetup. I can’t recall the last time that I ever slept twelve hours.
- The pedometer that we received from our sponsor is just great. I walked over four miles just to pick up my Princess Half Marathon packet, check out the sports expo, shop in Downtown Disney and grab lunch at the Rainforest Café. Not bad for just a Saturday afternoon. That was about all the Disney magic we could take in since we had to be up to catch the race bus at 3:30 AM, which was actually 12:30 AM.
- I’m not crazy for running 13.1 miles. I am crazy for getting up that early just to run 13.1 miles.
- I rock this tiara and this tutu!
- It is freakin’ cold when you are standing around in running clothes at 4 AM or so. Thank goodness for the warmth of my fellow Shredheads. I am so glad y’all are cuddlers.
- There has to be some sort of etiquette in long port-a-potty lines. It was not evident at all here at the Tiarathon.
- Finally we were herded into our starting corrals. I earned a spot in corral B, which was a shock. It would have been cool to hang out and shiver and cuddle with Kristen, Erica and Bill but I chose to stick with my fellow Cali girl and roommate, Kari, in corral C with Tinker Bell and a few other folks celebrating their birthdays by running. We had the opportunity to run a race together before during our training so it seemed perfect that we would share this “magical moment” and start the Disney Princess Half together. Besides, she is an awesome cuddler.
- The start of the Disney Princess Half was as magical and as amazing as I imagined that it would be. Fireworks went off for the start of each of the race corrals.
- The first three miles is always the hardest for me so I was determined to just trot along and take in all the Disney magic. There was a lot to take in along the way.
- Around mile 3, Kari was working hard to keep up so we parted ways as we both settled into comfortable running paces. As the mile markers ticked off, I was pleasantly surprised to see that I was keeping my planned pace.
- Right before mile 5 and our entry into The Magic Kingdom, I decided that I would take a walking break around mile 6 through mile 7. It was the half-way point so why not, I told myself. But then I entered Main Street and was overwhelmed with the number of cheering people. They were all there waving signs, ringing bells, banging drums, calling out my name and wishing me a happy birthday ( yes, I wore my “Happy Birthday” pin given to me by the Disney folks). Wow! It was such an amazing adrenaline rush to take that all in. Who needs a Gu or a shot of PowerAde…oh wait, I do. So I ate a Gu and took a swig of PowerAde and ran on through miles 6, 7, 8 and 9.
- Around mile 9 I once again reminded myself just how severely math impaired I really am. According to “my” calculations I only had around 3 miles left to go. Three miles! I can do this, I told myself and I picked up my pace just a little.
- Then I came up to mile 10 and realized that 13 minus 10 is equal to 3. Doh! Glancing over to the side of the road, I noticed that no one was waiting to use the port-a-pottys so I then took my one and only pit stop. Not bad considering that I stopped and drank at virtually every water stop.
- There were a lot of runners dressed up as Disney Princesses and their nemeses as well as Tinker Bells and Minnie Mouses but shortly after mile 10 I noticed a running, actually staggering pirate. He looked like he was drunk…oh wait, on the side of the road was the Black Pearl with Captain Jack Sparrow and his crew. That was a drunken pirate!
- Captain Jack Sparrow winked at me and called out “Happy Birthday Princess Laura” as I ran past him.
- NOW there were only 3 more miles to go! I had run all the way save for the water stations because I just can’t drink and run at the same time. It was only three more miles to go so why not run all the why in?
- Why not indeed?
- At mile 13 I found myself grinning from ear to ear. I am going to do this! I really am!
- Turning the corner for the last stretch before the finish line, we were greeted by a full on Gospel choir singing “Hallelujahs” as I ran past. It was then that I could see it…the Finish Line! People around me began to slow to a walk. What was that all about?! I ran as fast as my tired legs after running 13 miles could carry me. I RAN across that finish line and DAMN it felt so great to do it.
- For the numbers people out there, my official chip time was 2 hours 38 minutes and 13 seconds. My split times were 00:38:07 @ 5K pace of 12:16 mile, 01:15:21 @10K pace of 12:07, 01:52:40 @ 15K pace of 12:05 and 02:38:13 @ finish pace of 12:04. Yes, I got faster as I ran the course.
- As the medal was placed around my neck, I began to cry. The medal was so beautiful, so heavy, so amazing and it was mine, all mine.
- When you run a crazy-assed endurance event like that, you burn a crazy-assed amount of calories so that you can pretty much eat anything you want which I did with Erica, Stephanie and their husbands, Bill and his lovely wife and adorable kids and Kari.
All in all this was a great race. Disney did a great job putting on a great, entertaining and well-supported race. All my training and preparing really paid off as not only did I finish but I felt great. Yes, I was a little sore but who wouldn’t be after demanding their body perform like that? Today, two days after the big race and home at last, I have to admit that I am sorer than I was after the race or even the day after the race. Walking down the stairs in my house is a grace-less, painful activity. But I attribute that to spending most of my day yesterday up in the air in a cramped airplane. Which reminds me, United, that was some really suck-ass dubbing you did on the in-flight movie, Up In The Air. Perhaps you should check into ClearPlay. But then again, don’t do that either. I’ll just NetFlix the movie myself. Anyway, this week is all about stretching, rest and recovery then on to the next great race and maybe another and definitely another and…
But for now I will just enjoy this medal.