Sunday, February 27, 2011

2011 Disney Princess Half Marathon Recap

by Meghann on February 27, 2011

Look Ma! We did it!


And we did it together! 🙂

I had two goals for today’s half marathon:

#1 – Run the race side-by-side with my little sister and little brother.

#2 – Take pictures, enjoy the race, and just have FUN!

I’m proud to say that both goals were achieved and conquered!

The Princess Half Marathon had to be one of the funnest, most relaxing half marathons I’ve ever ran. We threw all time goals out the window and just enjoyed the run. Hey, if anything, I can promise you we got our money’s worth out of the race. If you’re going to spend that much money on a run, you better have the memories to make it worth wild!


(Yes, Eric is wearing my make-up than I am and Tarzan really is dressed in nothing but a loin cloth. Hubba Hubba. 😉 )

Our alarms beeped very loudly at 3:30 this morning. Waking up that early only seems acceptable on big race days and mornings of really early flights.

I wasn’t ready to eat yet, but I grabbed a bagel with peanut butter and strawberry slices for the road.


Tasty and portable. Win. Win.


The drive to Epcot was quick. The line to find a parking spot was not. Reason #15 it’s always smart to build in a time cushion when traveling on race mornings. 🙂

We parked and quickly found my sister and little brother.


Do you like our ears? Half the fun of running Disney races is dressing up! I was sporting the tutu Brie’s Aunt made me and some lovely Princess Ears I had picked up at the expo yesterday (I’ve always wanted princess ears!!)


I felt pretty. 🙂

Ben, Kelly, and I were officially representing the Anderson Running Company 😉 while Ashley and Derek were the official Anderson Running Company supporters.


They’re thrilled to be there. I promise. 😉

We said our goodbyes and made the 20 minute trek to the start.


Just as an FYI Disney start lines are never anywhere near where you parked. Be prepared to walk. 🙂


Another note, the corrals are relatively strict at Disney races. Either be prepared to jump the fence or change your corral at the expo. Disney is full of walkers, so if your corral is in the back, you will be surrounded by walkers!


We entered Corral D just as Corral A was passing the start line. Our goal was to get as close to the front of the corral as possible and in the process we ran into a couple of friends.


Hi Healthy Ashley and Ryan! Yay friends! I hadn’t seen Ashley since she moved up to North Carolina after Christmas. It was nice to chat with her about Tampa and ironmans. It was also nice to wish Ryan luck on her first half! I’m so proud of her for finishing today! 🙂

Corral after corral were released and before we knew it, it was our turn to countdown.


Ready or not – time to run!


As expected, the first couple of miles were PACKED! There was a point when Kelly started walking and was going the same speed I was trying to run. There was a lot of weaving, a lot of ankle kicking, and a lot of laughs. 🙂


I loved passing the couples who were running together. The guy below’s shirt read ‘He’s just taken’ and as I declared “Love your shirt!” he turned to his girlfriend/fiance/wife(?) and said “See! I did good!”


He did! He did very good! 🙂

Princesses like pirate ships too!


When you register for the Princess Half you are asked to select which Princess is your favorite. I picked Ariel, but Belle was definitely a close second. 😉


Just before Mile 4 we entered the Ticket and Transportation Center and spotted our support squad almost immediately.


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The best part about running for fun is having the time to stop and actually spend a few minutes with your spectators. 🙂



A quick kiss good bye and we were on our way to Magic Kingdom!


I’m pretty sure Ben was really enjoying being one of the few males in the race. He was living it up among a sea of beautiful ladies.


Go Ben!

Alright, I see the castle! Magic Kingdom – here we come!!


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And look! We found another friend. Hi MegaNerd!!



There were several characters set up along the way and one of the main reasons I wanted to run this race for fun was because I wanted to stop and take as many photos as possible. And trust me, we weren’t alone at this. Most characters had lines 20-30 people deep. It was a little insane, but totally worth it.



Plus, the lines gave us nice breaks to eat chomps and tweet.



We had one more pass by Ashley and Derek and we were on our way to Epcot and the finish line.


Hi Guys! Bye Guys!



Mile 10 already?


I did have one more Princess/ Goddess I was happy to see – MEG!! I’m not a fan of being called Meg personally (try it and I won’t respond), but it didn’t stop me from loving that there was a Disney character out there with my namesake!


Except I was a little jealous her full name was Megra. I thought Megra sounded so cool back in the day. 😉

The last few miles were a little empty and boring (minus a Disney character or two along the way), so we picked up the speed and beat our ‘predicted finish time’ by 15 minutes. 😉


The big ball was such a tease. You run into Epcot, run to the edge of the world showcase, turn around and run back to the finish.



We passed the ball for the second time and saw the gospel choir before turning the final corner to the finish.

The three of us grabbed each other’s hands and – for the first time in any race – I crossed the finish line holding BOTH of my siblings’ hands!


A girl got in our way right at the end, but I really hope one of the official photos came out! Cross your fingers for us!


Medal time!


It’s a tiara! I <3 it already.




And did you notice? My little brother kept his shirt on! Ten points for Ben!


We learned our lesson from the Miami Half (when we somehow skipped the post-race food tents) and stocked up on snacks!


I immediately dug into the muffin, orange and Luna Protein Bar (blah – not a fan of these!)

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After a quick change, the 5 of us thought it would be fun to spend the remainder of the day walking around Epcot with our medals around our necks.


I <3 my seasonal pass. Having the ability to go to Disney when ever I want (minus a few black out dates) is really amazing.

Plus, today it was fun seeing all the other runners walk around with their medals on as well. Everyone was congratulating and cheering each other on. There is no better community than a running community.


Ben and Ashley picked up their ‘Just Engaged’ buttons today. I told them they need to wear these every time they go to Disney from now until their wedding. Then they need to trade off to the ‘Just Married’ buttons for a couple of years. 😉


We were all STARVING and could only manage a few rides before food was needed.


The quick-service restaurant in Morocco at the World Showcase was my #1 pick for lunch. They have a ton of yummy Mediterranean options for a relatively cheap price.


I ordered the Vegetable Platter which came with a variety of little salads and 1/2 a pita.


It. Was. Good. My favorites were the olive salad and the hummus. 🙂


The crowds weren’t bad at Epcot at all. We managed to ride all we wanted to ride and were on our way our before 3:00.

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Of course, a stop at Menchie’s was a requirement. 😉

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Say Hello to my little friend.


I’m zonked.

It’s 6:00pm and I’m contemplating going to bed right now. After a shower. And dinner.

Good Night!

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