Posts Tagged by glass slipper challenge

2016 Princess Half Marathon Weekend Health & Fitness Expo

All runDisney race weekends start with a trip to the Health & Fitness Expo.  Kristin Cooke is here to take us on a tour of this year’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend Expo and fills us in on all the ins and outs…including some stories from the craziness at opening!

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2016 Princess Half Expo

I heard lots of stories from opening morning of the Expo. One girl had a wine glass taken out of her hand and the person ran away right after. A man stood in the checkout line with 3 different boxes of merchandise. Some girls were throwing wine glasses at each other and they broke. Apparently, there was a crush at the jacket table.

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Luckily, I didn’t get in town until later Thursday night. So, I headed over to the Expo first thing Friday morning. My sister drove from the resort and we had no problem getting in and parked. We ended up in a gravel lot to the right of the main area.

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We walked to the HP Field House to get our packets. The set up was slightly different this year. All packet pickups were on the ground floor. Since I was doing the Glass Slipper Challenge, I picked up my bib and immediately got my picture taken.

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I also got my pre-ordered necklace and GSC pin at the same place. In a separate area, I picked up my race retreat bracelet. My sister got her 10k packet in a second area. The shirts for the Glass Slipper were also in this area.  After picking up everything, we followed the directions to the Dooney & Bourke pre-purchase area. I had ordered the shopper purse (the largest one) before they even showed the pattern. They dressed up the hallways with princess silhouettes and topiaries. There was no line for the pre-purchased items at all.

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The Dooneys were in their own location. I walked right up and got my bag. I think it looks great. I love this pattern. It’s close enough to the original but not too childish to take to work. I had not pre-purchased any other items. There was a tape queue line on the floor. However, no one was in line.

Next to the pre-order area was an official merchandise area. It had a nice selection of items. The only thing that was completely sold out that I noticed was the Princess wine glasses. They had runDisney ones, but no Princess ones. Next to the Official Merchandise was the Dooney & Bourke area. I was surprised to see there were still Dooneys for sale. Either they had a lot more stock this year, or a lot of people disagreed with me about the pattern.

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After we finished browsing the official merchandise, we went over to the Jostens Center to the main Expo area. I love browsing Raw Threads and Sparkle Skirts for their latest offerings. They always have a large selection at the Expo. We kept going to the back so my sister could pick up her 10k shirt. The non-challenge shirts are all picked up here. They also had a shirt exchange. There was another section of official merchandise in this area. The offerings we almost identical to what was in the HP Field House.

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Right outside the official merchandise was Jeff Galloway. He was promoting his half marathon in Atlanta and the virtual option which could be used while running the Princess half. I had to stop and get my picture with him. He really is a nice guy.

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We also tried the samples of different Luna bars. Most of them were really tasty. We saw some other booths doing wheel spins and other giveaways, but didn’t stop. While my roommate picked up some socks from Fit2Run, I wandered back to the New Balance area.

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I knew there was a virtual queue for shoes. I was hoping to pick up a pair for my daughter. I bought my son a pair a year ago at the inaugural Star Wars race. After talking to a man at the entrance, he went to the back to look for my daughter’s size. If I had wanted them for myself, I would have needed to register for the queue. Luckily, he found the Ariel shoes for my daughter. I also got the flounder clip-ons at the register. The New Balance area wasn’t too crowded. I think the virtual queue has really helped with that.

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I went back to find my roommate and sister. The one other thing I wanted was the discount from MarathonFoto.  After consulting the map in the event guide, we realized we would have to go back to the HP Field House. Last year, they had booths in both places. I guess they consolidated this year. As we made our way back, we noticed the crowd was starting to build. Luckily, I was able to go right up to a tablet and purchase the certificate. It was not as good of a deal as last year, but $75 for a $100 certificate is still good. They did have a wait when I was finished as they only had 3 working tablets.

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We decided to grab a bite to eat at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Grille. I ended up with chicken nuggets, fries, and a Coke Zero in a bottle as the fountain wasn’t working. They did have a pasta special for the runners which my sister ordered. They were not crowded this year. We were slightly earlier than normal lunch crowd at 11, but there were only 4 other tables in use. Last year it was packed and overflowing. The food was pretty good. The staff were wonderful and cleared our empty plates for us. When we were finished, we went back to our car.

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Leaving the ESPN Wide World of Sports, although slightly confusing, was not hard. They had officers directing traffic at the exit. It was frustrating watching them talk to people in vehicles while we waited, but overall it was not bad.

Having not been to the Expo on Thursday morning, I did not see the worst part. In my experience, the Expo was better than last year and the merchandise (aside from the Princess wine glasses) seemed to be well stocked. There were even Dooneys left! I hope they learn from the Thursday fiasco and make changes for next year. Although it will never happen, having the first day for runners only might help. (RAD note: This is a really good idea!) Also, allowing runners to pre-order more items could take some of the pain away. I truly believe most of the bad behavior comes from resellers. Thursday’s issues aside, I think it was a well-run Expo with lots of good vendors.

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Kristin Cooke Bio PicKristin Cooke is a running mother of 2 who loves Disney. She is a Database Administrator by profession and started running in 2012 to get in shape after her second baby. Running has become her social activity and stress relief.
You can read about Kristin’s races on her blog and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Registration for the 2016 Princess Half Marathon Weekend Opens at Noon!

2016-Princess-Registration-logoIt’s that time again Princesses!  Sadly your Fairy Godmother won’t be able to help you today, so make sure your credit cards are ready to register for the 2016 Disney’s Princess Half Marathon today at noon EDT!  This magical race weekend will be taking place February 18 – 21, 2016 and will include the Princess 5K, Enchanted 10K, Princess Half Marathon and the Glass Slipper Challenge.  Over 25,000 runners will be taking to the streets of Walt Disney World during this magical race weekend to earn the sparkliest bling in the land.

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As with all runDisney races events, we see another price increase for this year of 3-8% depending on the race.  Here’s the pricing:

Disney Princess Half Marathon
Sunday, February 21, 2016

  • $175 by August 4, 2015
  • $190 between August 5 – 25, 2015
  • $205 on or after August 26, 2015

Disney Enchanted 10K 
Saturday, February 20, 2016

  • $110 by August 4, 2015
  • $125 between August 5 – 25, 2015
  • $140 on or after October 22, 2014

Glass Slipper Challenge 
Saturday & Sunday, February 20-21, 2016 

  • $305 by August 4, 2015
  • $340 between August 5 – 25, 2015
  • $365 on or after August 26, 2015

Disney Princess 5K 
Friday, February 19, 2016

  • $65 per participant by August 25, 2015
  • $75 per participant on or after August 26, 2015

runDisneyKids Races – Dashes
Friday & Saturday, February 19-20, 2016

  • $15 per participant by August 25, 2015
  • $20 per participant on or after August 26, 2015

runDisneyKids Races – 1-Mile Run
Friday & Saturday, February 19-20, 2016

  • $30 per participant by August 25, 2015
  • $35 per participant on or after August 26, 2015

It looks like official team registrations are no longer an option, however you can purchase commemorative team bibs for family and friends.  You can order any quantity you would like, which is an interesting new twist.  These will be available in the Commemorative Items section of the registration.

As with all runDisney events, participants must stop by the runDisney Health and Fitness Expo to pick up their race bib, t-shirt and spend all your cash on runDisney gear!  The expo runs from February 18 – 20 and will be at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

Welcome

If you’re looking for the ultimate VIP experience over Princess Weekend, then the Race Retreat may be for you!  For an extra fee ($120 in 2015), you will have access to various pre and post-race amenities, such as a temperature controlled tent, snacks, private bathrooms, changing tents, character meet & greets a commemorative item, massages and more.

There are also various dining events over the weekend that you can attend.  The first event is Breakfast with the Princesses immediately following the 5K on February 19th and the 10K on February 20th.  Here you can enjoy a breakfast buffet with items such as quiche, breakfast burritos, french toast and more, as well as special character meet and greets and photo ops.

Returning for 2 nights again (February 19th & 20th) is the Pasta in the Park Party.  This family oriented event takes place in the World Showplace Pavilion inside Epcot and includes a buffet dinner of pasta (duh!), character meet and greets, and a reserved viewing area for Illuminations.  Pricing for both of these events has not been published yet, but here is the pricing from 2015 to give you and idea:

Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Breakfast
Friday & Saturday, February 19-20, 2016 from 6:30 – 8:30 am

  • $39 for Adults (10 and up)
  • $26 for Children (ages 3 – 9)

Pasta in the Park Party
Friday & Saturday, February 19-20, 2016 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm, Illuminations at 9:00 pm

  • $54 for Adults (10 and up)
  • $30 for Children (ages 3 – 9)
  • Children under 3 are free

And let’s not forget the most important part of any race, the spectators!  Generally, there are 4 different ChEAR Squad package levels available and range from a newsletter at no cost to the platinum package that includes entry into the race retreat.  Pricing and package details have not been published yet, but here is the pricing from 2015:

ChEAR Squad

  • Bronze – No Charge per package
  • Silver – $39 per package
  • Gold – $65 per package
  • Platinum – $120 per package

Make sure to visit the runDisney event page for more information on all of the events taking place that weekend including details on the travel packages, transportation information, park tickets and more.

Pre-sales for the Glass Slipper Challenge sold out in about 30 minutes two weeks ago, so I’m sure the event itself will sell out very quickly.  Here are some great tips from runDisney about how to register for this race weekend efficiently:

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If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you’ll know that I LOVE Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  I had to defer my 2015 race registration, which means I am already signed up and ready to go for 2016.  This will be my first big event after having a baby this fall.  I think it will be the perfect motivation to get me up and keep me active!

I’ve ran Princess 3 times and each year has been a different experience for me with it’s own set of challenges.  You can read all of the details here:

2014

2013

2012: My FIRST Half Marathon!

Will YOU be a Disney Princess in 2016?!?  Hope to see you there 🙂

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A Look at the 2015 Glass Slipper Challenge

With registration for the 2016 Princess Half Marathon Weekend opening today for DVC Members and Annual Passholders, I thought it would be a good time to take a look back at some of the festivities from this past year.  Kristina is a runDisney veteran…you may remember her from the great tips she provided on conquering the Dopey Challenge.   However, this year was her first experience with Princess Half Marathon Weekend and she decided to take on the Glass Slipper Challenge.  Hopefully you can keep up with her recap…she’s a speedy runner!! 🙂

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Thank you so much to Sarah for letting me detail my experience as a first time participant in the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend! But this wasn’t my first runDisney race. I ran in the Marathon Weekend in 2012, 2013 and 2014!

As the registration date for the 2015 Marathon weekend came and went without me signing up, I started to strongly consider the Princess Half weekend. Two of my best friends AND my parents and sister were also heavily interested in running one of the races, so we all registered. My one dear friend and I decided to kick some glass slipper in the Glass Slipper Challenge, while my parents, sister and other friend were enchanted by the Enchanted 10k.

Glass Slipper Challenge and the Little Mermaid!

Glass Slipper Challenge and the Little Mermaid!

Me and my friend Libbie with the Coachmen

Me and my friend Libbie with the Coachmen

Enough of the back story, let’s get to the recap!

There’s nothing quite like hearing an alarm sound at 3 a.m., especially when you’re in Florida with a less than seasonal outside temperature. But the pure excitement of doing a race in DISNEY where my parents, sister and friends are also participating lessened the pain of being awake so early.

Prepared race outfit.

Prepared race outfit

Ok, the early wakeup call is one thing, but the 39 degree outside temperature was a completely different beast. I am kind of a wimp when it comes to the cold, even though I live in Ohio. I decided to wear two long sleeve shirts, capri running tights and gloves. I was very happy to have all those layers!

Ready to run!

Ready to run!

My sister and I left for the monorail at 4:00 a.m., a little before my parents, since we were both in Corral A. We made it to the EPCOT parking lot by 4:40, with just enough time for a bathroom break.

Me and my sister Alexa getting ready to head to the Corrals!

Me and my sister Alexa getting ready to head to the Corrals!

Pretty soon, we were waiting for the fireworks to signal the start of the race. For the 10K there are fewer corrals. I believe just A through E. My sister and I were a little late getting into Corral A, so we were toward the back. In order to save energy and not weave through people, I ran in the grass once I crossed the start line. There is no doubt in my mind that I looked silly, but in less than a quarter of a mile I was out of the largest crowd.

The first two miles of the race take you out of the EPCOT parking lot and onto the highway. We were greeted with Elsa and her snow, which added excitement to what could be a boring portion of the course. The course continues on roadways until a little after the 5K mark. This is where you enter the EPCOT countries by Norway! Oh what a beautiful sight to see! The countries are illuminated and there’s music playing! It gives a second life to my feet. You run past France, up the little hill, turn left down the hill toward the back exit, then make your way to the Boardwalk. Running on the Boardwalk makes me nervous since it could be slippery, but I didn’t experience any issues during this race. I also didn’t hear from my parents, sister or friends that they had trouble on the Boardwalk.

The course takes you up the hill by Swan and Dolphin and past the Yacht and Beach Club. A general observation: it’s so nice to see resort guests out there cheering for the runners!

By mile 5, you enter back into EPCOT, through the countries, making your way to the finish line. That last mile went by in a blur since I was tired and cold. However, I was overjoyed to see the clock read 43:xx! My true finish time was 42:36. I finished 21st overall, 8th out of women and 3rd in my age group! But, the most exciting part was getting to see my sister finish shortly after and then my parents crossing the finish line hand in hand!

Me and Alexa after the 10k

Me and Alexa after the 10k

Loving that mylar blanket

Loving that mylar blanket

The rest of the day was spent relaxing, spending time with my friends and eating a hearty dinner of pasta and chicken to prepare for the half.

Picture courtesy of my friend Libbie

Picture courtesy of my friend Libbie

Picture courtesy of my friend Libbie

Picture courtesy of my friend Libbie

Sunday morning I woke with a sore throat and runny nose. I went back and forth trying to decide whether I should run this race “hard” or take it easy. The answer came to me after hearing all the wonderful women discussing children with Rett’s Syndrome. They cannot walk let alone run, so no minor sore throat could keep me from giving this race my all. There was some exciting news that morning, too. Disney announced a half marathon weekend at Disneyland Paris for September 23-25, 2016!

After the half marathon with Merida, one tough princess

After the half marathon with Merida, one tough princess

Before I knew it, the countdown was on for Corral A. Those fireworks at the start line never cease to amaze me! They provide additional adrenaline for the 13.1 miles ahead! Off we were to Magic Kingdom; the miles to the entrance ticked by. We ran through the Transportation and Ticket Center and made our way past the Contemporary. Reaching that area always brings Disney Magic to my feet because I know that Main Street in Magic Kingdom is quickly approaching. No joke I did a princess wave the entire way down Main Street. I was overcome with happiness and couldn’t hold back those princess-y feelings!

Tomorrowland and Fanstasyland are fun, too, as they lead to running under Cinderella’s Castle. I treasure those moments in Magic Kingdom. Even though this was my sixth time experiencing Magic Kingdom in a race setting, I promise each time is just as, if not more, magical than the time before it.

After Magic Kingdom, it’s back to some roadway running. You pass by the Grand Floridian and the Polynesian, as well as one of the golf courses on Disney property. Just past mile 8, you get back on the road to head to EPCOT. You’re able to see runners heading into Magic Kingdom at this point. It’s fun to offer each other mutual support.

The temperature the morning of the half was much nicer than the 10K, but I needed to put my gloves on running back toward EPCOT; a cool breeze gave me the chills.

Major focusing on putting one foot in front of the other occurred during miles 10 through 12. This is the “hilliest” part of the course. Luckily, they’re rolling hills and with determination they are manageable. For the final mile you make it back into EPCOT. During the half marathon, runners don’t visit the countries. Rather, cones are set up to create a path. Like the 10k, the last mile of this race was a blur for me. I focused entirely on breathing, pumping my arms and moving my feet one in front of the other.

Approaching the finish line I heard the announcers shout my name, “Kristina Drnjevich from O-H-“ and I responded “I-O”! I finished in 1:34:25, 33rd overall, 23rd out of women and 9th in my age group. I was greeted by my mom who was kind enough to wake up early to meet me at the finish line! The Princess Half Marathon Weekend was my favorite runDisney event so far. Every step was filled with Magic and Disney makes sure you feel like a Princess, or Prince ☺

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Pictures courtesy of my mom, capturing the finish line.

Additional observations: There are fewer runners during the Princess half, so the expo and, in my opinion, the transportation are less crowed. The character stops for the 10K seemed to be slim, but for the half marathon there were a number of stops. Even the princes came out! I did not stop during either race for pictures with the characters, but I noticed the half had a significant number. Also, there were plenty of water stops during both races and plenty of port-a-potties. It was a blast of a race weekend that I will easily recommend to anyone looking to run a Disney race!

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Hi there! I’m Kristina Drnjevich, an assistant prosecuting attorney in Northeast Ohio. A longtime Disney and running lover, it has been a joy experiencing races in Disney. The Glass Slipper Challenge was my fourth time participating in a runDisney race weekend. This April, I ran in my first Boston Marathon, and a mere six days later, I headed to California to complete the Big Sur Marathon for the Boston to Big Sur Challenge. You can follow me on Twitter and Instagram at @KDrnjevich!

2015 Princess Weekend Merchandise & runDisney New Balance Shoes

Probably the best part about runDisney race weekends is all of the exclusive merchandise available at the Health & Fitness Expo.  There’s nothing like having some great commemorative items to take home with you to remember your big accomplishment!

Princess Half Marathon Weekend is right around the corner and there are some great new items you’ll be able to pick up.  Let’s check them out!

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Frozen has taken over as the main theme of the weekend and you can find snowflakes and characters on many of the items.  There is also the addition of a pink runDisney Magic Band to go with the blue design that was introduced over Marathon weekend.

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This is the 2nd year for the Glass Slipper Challenge and they have knocked it out of the park with these turquoise and black designs.  I just LOVE that wine glass!

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Ahhh BondiBands…my running must have!  Look at all of designs you’ll have to choose from!

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Another new addition to the race merchandise are these fun phone cases…looks like they can be customized too!

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And of course, no Princess Weekend would be complete without the ultimate accessory, a Disney Dooney & Bourke purse!  These new Princess designs are whimsical and fun…perfect for this royal event.

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Earlier today, New Balance released NEW design in their runDisney collection that will be release over Princess Half Marathon weekend.  Over Marathon Weekend the new Steamboat Willie inspired 990v3 shoes and now they are introducing 860v5’s in similar designs and capturing the spirit of the Sorcerer Mickey and Pink Polka Dot Minnie designs from the 2014 collection.

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The shoes will only be available at Health and Fitness Expos during the runDisney event weekend. To minimize waiting in line for shoes, New Balance has created a virtual queue to let you know when it’s your turn to be fitted and make your purchase. Starting on Thursday, February 19, starting at 6 a.m. runners can sign up at NBvirtualqueue.com using their bib number. Non-runners can sign up daily, pending inventory.

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Are you excited about the new designs or are they leaving you feeling a little grey??

As a reminder the Fit for a Princess Expo will be held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and the hours are as follows:

  • Thursday, February 19th, 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
  • Friday, February 20th, 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
  • Saturday, February 21st, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

If you are an AP holder or DVC member you may be eligible for discounts at the Expo, so don’t forget to bring your cards and always ask!  New Balance shoes generally do not get discounts.

What are you looking forward to getting this year?? 

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Running Coast to Coast with Jes Stern

I’m super excited to be starting a new series here on Running at Disney called Running Coast to Coast!! Last month when I was looking for contributors for Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend, I had an overwhelming number of people want to write about their Coast to Coast experience.  So instead of limiting it to one story for that race weekend, I thought it would be great to hear from everyone since I’m sure all stories are very different.

Today Jes is here to kick things off with her Coast to Coast journey from Princess to Disneyland!  Not only does she have a fun story, but her costumes for all of the races are AMAZING!  Check it out…

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Running-Coast-to-Coast

My journey to the coveted Coast to Coast medal began before I even knew it existed in July 2013 when I signed up to be one of St. Jude’s Heroes and run the Inaugural Glass Slipper Challenge. I signed up on a whim, having no worldly proof that I could run a 10k, much less a half marathon and raise $1800. At the time, I had only been training for 5ks, but this was just the motivation I needed to take my training to the next level.

Having never run a Disney race or anything longer than a 5k, I immediately began to do research online and found a bunch of great blogs like Running at Disney. While I was reading every blog I could find about runDisney races, I quickly learned about the upcoming Inaugural Dumbo Double Dare and the Coast to Coast Challenge and just knew I had to add these to my list of goals for 2014. With proper training, I knew I would be able to complete the challenge. When registration opened for Dumbo in January, I still hadn’t run the Glass Slipper Challenge yet but knew I had to sign up right away because it would sell out, so I did!

In February I headed down to Walt Disney World to run the first leg of my Coast to Coast. Growing up, my grandparents lived in Florida, so Walt Disney World was a place I got to visit quite often and I was no stranger to the heat and humidity that Florida has to offer. However, after training through one of the coldest winters I can remember in the north east, the heat and humidity really did a number on me, and I threw any time goals I had for myself out the window. My only goal now was to finish.

I got through the 10k, dressed as a St. Jude Hero version of Rapunzel and moved on to the half marathon dressed as Snow White (with a St. Jude cape, of course).

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I did it, I survived, my first half marathon was complete, and boy was I sore. I couldn’t believe I had signed up to do this again. Eventually the soreness went away and I was pumped to tackle another challenge and make my first trip to Disneyland.

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Fast forward through a couple more half marathons and triathlons to August and I was on my way to Disneyland. Also at this point, I found myself smack dab in the middle of training for the New York City Marathon, and the Disneyland Half Marathon had a very specific time range for me to meet for my training.

We arrived in Disneyland on Thursday morning and had somewhat of a less-than-magical experience, but we pressed on and headed next door to the Expo. Once we made our way downstairs at the Disneyland Hotel, I found my packet pick up spot; it was the only one without a line! Finally something was going smoothly for the day! That’s when I realized there was no slot in the book for my Coast to Coast wrist band! I asked the volunteer what to do about this and she flagged down a runDisney employee. He asked me if I was sure that I had done a race in Disney World and if I had marked off on my registration that I was participating in the Coast to Coast Challenge. I said yes, and he sent me off to wait in a line at the Runner’s Relations booth. When I made it to the front of the line, the woman at the booth asked for my identification and which race I participated in. She then looked me up in the official results and strapped that green Coast to Coast Challenge bracelet on my wrist. PHEW!

Apparently it is quite common for there to be mistakes with the Coast to Coast Challenge wristbands. If there are any mistakes from one registration to another, such as a new address, a change in name, or in my case, my birthday was a day off on one of my registrations, it won’t sync up right in the system. So if you know you’re supposed to be earning your Coast to Coast, don’t be afraid to ask if they don’t have you marked down for a wristband on packet pick up day!

We spent all day Friday in the parks and had a plan to take the 10k slow, have fun with it, and stop for pictures and then focus on a PR on Sunday at the Half Marathon.

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Everything was going according to plan, and we were about to hit the 5k pad in California Adventure.

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Right in front of Carthay Circle Restaurant, I looked down and saw the trolley tracks. I told myself “DON’T TRIP ON THOSE TRACKS!” as; I have a habit of falling down running. The next thing I knew, my foot was caught, and I was going down hard. I twisted my ankle and slammed to the ground. It seemed like slow motion as my iPhone and water bottle flew out of my hands. My arm was bleeding, my ankle was throbbing, and I sprung up from the ground. A few runners gathered around me to make sure I was okay; one told me that I had a great recovery. Two or three Disney workers tried to escort me off the course to a nurse’s station, and I refused. I wasn’t about to give up my Stitch or Dumbo medals, so I pressed on. I hobbled/jogged/walked to my worst 10k finish time ever, but I did it.

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When I got back to my hotel room, I realized my arm was in pretty bad shape, but my ankle seemed okay enough for a day in the parks, but probably not well enough to attempt that half marathon PR, so once again I was throwing my time goals out the window. Luckily, it’s a runDisney race, so even without a PR I knew I could still have a good time and get that Coast to Coast medal.

On Sunday morning I woke up bright and early and got dressed for the race.

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My leg that I had gotten stuck in the trolley tracks was doing some weird muscle spasm thing that I never had before. I’m sure it was some combination of falling, spending all day in the parks and dehydration. I made sure to fuel throughout the race and take as much water and PowerAde as possible. I loved that at the Disneyland Half there were so many spectators handing out food to the runners. It was nice to have an orange slice, red vine and a pretzel instead of just ShotBloks and water.

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I started the race out slow and got faster bit by bit. My leg wasn’t feeling the best and the muscle spasms continued, but I just kept thinking of that Coast to Coast medal waiting for me at the finish line. Then finally there it was the finish! I crossed the line just three seconds slower than at the Princess Half Marathon and collected my Disneyland Half Marathon Medal, Dumbo Double Dare Medal and most importantly the Coast to Coast Medal!

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My super speedy friend Matt had finished nearly an hour ahead of me, and my boyfriend Tim was stuck on the other side of the course with spectators, so we all agreed to meet up at the hotel room. I hobbled back to the Paradise Pier Hotel alone with my leg cramping up. I was nearly in tears from the pain, but people walking by me kept congratulating me on my Coast to Coast and that kept the tears at bay.

When I got back to the room, I took a shower and my legs was cramping up worse and worse. I downed a bottle of water with Nuun and took some Aleve and a nap. When I woke up it was time to head over to the Big Thunder Ranch BBQ for all you can eat ribs and chicken.

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Later on, we headed back to California Adventure and I did a dramatic reenactment of tripping on the trolley tracks.

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Overall, the Coast to Coast Challenge was a great experience despite a few minor set-backs. Running through Disney World and Disneyland have a lot of differences and I’m glad that I got to experience both. I can’t wait to do it again next year to earn my pink medal when I take on The Glass Slipper Challenge and The Pixie Dust Challenge!

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Jes is a full time engineer, part time toy maker and runner in training living in Maryland. She began running in 2013 after making a deal with her Dad that if she lost 30 pounds, he would get his long overdue colonoscopy. Her first half marathon was the Disney Princess Half Marathon in February 2014. Since her running journey began, she has run five half marathons, three 10ks, completed two sprint triathlons and numerous 5ks. She is currently training for the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon and Goofy Race and a Half Challenge. Follow along with her journey at runsandcrafts.com or on Instagram @epictoychest.

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Have you completed the runDisney Coast to Coast Challenge?  Want to share your experience?  Send me an email to sarah@runningatdisney.com to be featured on an upcoming Running Coast to Coast!!

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