The morning of the Disneyland Half Marathon kicked off the way the beginning of every runDisney
race does, with a Team #runDisney Meet up! We gathered under Mickey’s hat outside of the Disneyland
Resort and exchanged well wishes and warm greetings. Double checked that everyone was recovered from the 10k and geared for 13.1 miles. Then headed off toward the starting corrals. During the 10k I felt there weren’t very many water stops along the course (only 3 during the humid 6.2 miles) and I wanted to carry my own hydration during the half marathon, but I had to find a runDisney way to do it. What was the best way to solve this problem? Cars Land had the answer for me! Saturday afternoon while walking through the park I picked up a Cozy Cone Motel hat and a 32 oz Cone with straw, hold the soda please. The Cozy, but casual, Cone costume was born; complete with orange stripe shorts that I already had and orange KT tape (because it is important that it matches).
The Half Marathon course also started by heading down Disney Way but took a right turn sooner than the 10k course on to Katella Ave and around to the other side of California Adventure. We quickly found ourselves running through Cars Land and around towards Paradise Pier where a much scaled down version of the Wonderful World of Color was playing in the fountain below. I ran into Allison Sweeney coming up to the Pier, wished her well as I went past.
We wrapped through both parks in these opening miles and I stopped for several character shots along the way. Marathon Foto got some great shots with the green army men, a few Star Wars characters, Captain Hook, and even a Princess or two as I passed through Sleeping Beauty’s castle and out of the Disneyland Resort area and into Anaheim.
The run through Anaheim was much less runDisney and very much like every other race that exists in the world. City streets still bustling around you, people outside unaware that a race is going on, and the sights and sounds of the world. There were many cheerleading teams and high school bands stationed along this part of the course and a lot of people on the sides to cheer you along. It was a fun time to be running through rather early in the pack of runners. Mile 7 was great as the race course was lined with classic cars down both sides of the street, lots to look at and be in awe of a lot of hard work and restoration by the car owners. Mile 8 wrapped around the Honda Center (insert Mighty Ducks reference here, quack quack) and along the Santa Ana River Trail for a mile until we reached Angel Stadium. I am a huge baseball fan and love the opportunity to be in and around ball parks. We entered the park and ran a lap around the warning track. The lower level of the stands were full of cheering spectators, a video feed was rolling on the jumbo screen, and an announcer was calling runner names as we passed by. It was a great feature to the race course.
The final miles of the race wrapped back across I-5 and on to Disney Way. Seeing the Resort area up ahead we knew the finish was close and final push was on to the finish line. After crossing the line we waited around for a few minutes and took a T#rD Dumbo Double Dare Finisher Photo before Matt & I had to very quickly retreat back to the Grand Californian Hotel, grab a quick shower, and catch the shuttle back to LAX for the 1 pm flight back to Mississippi.
It was a great runDisney weekend. I was able to spend some time with great friends from Jonnie’s GoodGuys & Team #runDisney and make some new friends from Further Faster Forever that I am excited to be running with in Las Vegas in a couple of months. Goofy Challenge, Dumbo Double Dare, Coast to Coast Challenge. I’d say that’s a quality runDisney year. Until we meet again Disney.
Finish Time – 1:52:46
Overall – 705
Male – 533
Division – 88