Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Tinker Bell Half Marathon (Race Recap)

Anaheim, CA
Sunday, January 29
Half Marathon #54
California Half #2
Weather - Perfect before the sun came up. Then... blazing HOT

I literally registered for the Tinker Bell half marathon within ONE HOUR of registration opening. Inaugural? Disney? Have.To.

Anyway, the alarm goes off at 3:45, along with my obligatory "Damn you Disney" for forcing me to get up at such an obscene hour. Considering there were FOUR females in the room, we managed to get ready in record time, heading out the door maybe a few minutes late. Our goal was to leave by 4:15, walk next door to the Marriott to catch the shuttle, and make it in plenty of time to get the Half Fanatic picture done at 4:45. Epic.Fail. We seem to forget how LONG everything Disney takes. I think we got to the start area around 5:10. People take Disney SERIOUSLY. Race didn't start for over a half an hour and it was practically deserted. No lines for the bathroom - score! We headed over to the start corrals and... run into Dave!!

We decide to start in corral B, since most of us had a B bib. I had an A bib, but moved back so that we could all start together. I had a feeling this was going to be an epic race. I was right. I really don't know how to blog this... I usually have whiny sections where I complain about how I was feeling and that I was tired and blah, blah, blah. I really don't have any of that. Our "A" goal for this race was 2:45 (most of the girls are around 2:30 half-ers, but we figured pictures would add some time). So we started at an easy jog, and off we went. The beginning few miles is outside the park, but the REAL fun obviously started when we got INTO the park. Warning, picture overload - I'll recap after all of them:
First picture of the day, we probably waited over 5 minutes just for this ONE picture
Look at Meeeee!
Captain Hook and Smee
The Three Caballeros
Sleeping Beauty and Prince Charming
John Smith and Pocahontas
Around mile 4.5
The "flailing" begins
Possibly my favorite picture EVER
Monsters, Inc makes me HAPPY
We totally DID stop in the middle of the road for this picture. OBNOXIOUS. :D
Could I *be* smiling more???
Stopping for another obnoxious picture
Oh. My. Flailing.
WOOOOOOODY!!! Last photo op at mile 12.5
Actually running. This part was a little tough ;-)
Hi Fivin' Chip and Dale at the Finish Line
Wheee, best finish EVER!
So. About the race. Our goal was to only stop for pictures and to walk through the water stations. And for real, we pretty much did that. I need to specify that when you see my finish time... So the race was really great for an inaugural. Of course Run Disney has put on other events so it's not like they are BRAND new. With the exception of one aid station being out of Powerade, it was very well supported. Plenty of volunteers with cups ready to go. Trash cans not overflowing, etc. We stopped once in the middle of the park to use the real bathroom, and that was also time consuming. But you can't beat real toilets and actually being able to wash your hands after.

I'll post splits at the end, but our official 5K split took longer than the slowest 10K I have ever run. But. This was honestly the most fun I have EVER had in a race. We flailed our arms around, acted goofy, talked, jogged, HAD FUN. I had to take my first GU around mile 4 since we had already been out forEVER and I was starving. The crowd support is AMAZING in Disney races. Not just friends/family, but there are cheerleaders, hula dancers, bands... it's all there! So if I haven't already mentioned it, we got kinda annoying. We had spent so much time goofing off, that at one point we were only TWELVE MINUTES ahead of the sweeper vans. oooooops. And obviously 99% of the people in the pack by the middle of the race? Walkers. So I kinda felt like a badass running past them all. Sorry, walkers, I mean no offense!

Around the halfway point, we stop to use the bathroom again. By now it is HOT. We are roasting!! That's what we get for screwing around for so long! 10K hits and we are picking up the pace and making up time. Although it is obvious that there is NO WAY we will meet our goal. That's ok, we were having a blast. I was HUNGRY. I have never BEEN so hungry in a race. Again, guess that is what happens when you get up at 3:45 am and then spend a jillion hours on the course.

The fuel station wasn't until mile 9 or so, but it was very clearly labeled by FLAVOR so you could pick the one you wanted. We pretty much stuck together the entire race, although we did lose Julie around mile 10 or so. The remaining four of us ran together until our last photo at mile 12.5. We then decided to spring (aka, actually RUN) for the finish. Longest 800m of MY LIFE. But, crossed the line, got my ginormous awesome spinny Tink medal. We met up with the Sparkle Skirts girls at the end and were rewarded with the MOST AWESOME DONUT HOLE IN THE UNIVERSE. Seriously. I don't even like donuts, and this was like a little taste of heaven. Yum. Julie joined us a minute later and we got our final pictures done. Ready for the stats? You know you are!

Bib #515
Official Time - 3:20:30 (Heh. My previous worst time? 2:34)
Official 5K Split - 1:08:41
Official 10K Split - 1:52:04
Official 15K Split - 2:28:59
Overall Place - 7505/9386
Division Place - 1397/1717
Garmin Time - 3:20:31
Garmin MOVING Time - 2:41:18 (That's 39 minutes of NOT moving...)
Garmin Distance - 13.58
Garmin Pace - 14:46
Garmin MOVING Pace - 11:53
Mile 1 - 11:54
Mile 2 - 12:13
Mile 3 - 33:30 (Um, hello)
Mile 4 - 14:45
Mile 5 - 11:47
Mile 6 - 16:17
Mile 7 - 11:06
Mile 8 - 11:49
Mile 9 - 11:52
Mile 10 - 12:11
Mile 11 - 14:08
Mile 12 - 14:45
Mile 13 - 12:12
Mile 13.1ish.... - 10:58

Bathroom Stops - 2 (+1 while we waited for someone)
Pictures Taken - Lots
Running - Really, we did jog most of the course. We just... rested a lot :D

Sparkly Awesomeness!
Julie had the most AMAZING costume EVER!
Ignore the creepy glare on my nose >:(
Bling, Bling!!
Apparently when you take an eternity to finish a race, the park is actually opening by the time you are done.  We had to wait in line for bag checks to get to the shuttles. And then we waited a really long time for our bus. My legs felt pretty good. You know, since I just "raced" a half marathon. Got back to the room, packed, then it was a quick shower and off to lunch at Red Robin. Yes, giving them another chance, even after the fiasco with my pasta the night before. I couldn't decide what to order, so Heather and I split the bacon cheeseburger and some super hot & spicy burger. Best. Food. Ever. I had ordered a salad, and of course the server had to mess with me and charge me for a dinner salad instead of a side salad. Not impressed with this location..

Best. Burger. Ever.
Kat was nice enough to give us a ride to Heather's house so her husband didn't have to load up the kids to come get us. The kids were already in their swim suits when we got there. After a quick lunch for them, we headed over to the pool. Outside. In January. I'm clearly NOT in Colorado anymore. They were in the pool for about an hour, then we headed back to relax for about an hour before A and I had to head to the airport :(

We had Subway for dinner, flight was on time, and we actually landed 25 minutes EARLY. When does THAT ever happen?

Best. Race. Weekend. Ever.

I'm probably forgetting stuff, but this was really the best trip and race ever. I have truly never run a race "for fun" ever. And even though I had my worst half marathon time, I don't think I will EVER be able to top the amount of fun I had. Thanks so much for putting up with my obnoxious behavior Heather, Kat, Julie, and Mary. I'll blame it on the redonkulous fun that is Disney and the sweltering SoCal sun. Hey. Let's do this again... Novemberish?


  1. The joy of running! Looks like a trip to remember. A Disney half or full is definitely on my to-run list! Great photos and you look so happy. I guess so since you were running in the happiest place on earth :)

  2. Running is more than just running fast and your report proofs it, it's about having fun!! You guys look like you had a blast. So happy for you!!

  3. Looks like so much fun! and I love that medal. I may have to invest in a Disney race at some point!

  4. It sounds like you had an awesome time. That rocks!

  5. I love the 33-minute split! This recap was so fun to read. There's one "flailing" photo, though, where it looks like you're wearing only one sock. Do I win a prize for noticing?

  6. Awesome race pics! I was elastic girl at the Disneyland Half. Love the costume.

  7. Fun recap! I wanted to stop for the princesses photo op too, but it was too early in the course for me to stop that long :) you ladies had such a blast!

  8. Looks amazing! Might have to put this on my MUST DO list!

  9. How great. I like yours and Heather's costumes too.

  10. For the record, auto-pause says we ran it in 2:30 ... I don't know what YOU were looking at!

  11. Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!

    Congratulations on your PW. It was the best way to get a new PW!


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