Posts Tagged by princess

2015 Princess Half Marathon Race Recap

This was the first time in 3 years that I haven’t run the Princess Half Marathon.  It was definitely tough to follow along from home, but when I read these wonderful race recaps, it’s like I was there!  Robin’s story is not just a wonderful overview of the race, but it is incredibly inspiring to see how far she came in one year!

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This time last year, if you had told me I would be participating in a half marathon at Disney World, I would have asked where the hidden camera was! At the time, I was a 55 year old couch potato with a little-used treadmill sitting in the basement gathering dust. But, my daughter, Taryn, wanted to get in shape and had a marathon on her bucket list, so she asked if I would do one with her. I told her that maybe we should aim for a little less mileage the first time out and we agreed to complete a half marathon together. But, which one?

Her friend had just run the 2014 Disney Princess Half Marathon and told her how much fun it was. I’m a dental hygienist and, coincidentally, I’d just had a favorite patient come in and entertain me with stories of what a great time she’d just had at the same race. So, we got really excited about doing the Disney Princess Half together! Then, my son-in-law, Geoff, decided to run in it (although he was emphatically against wearing a tutu which we thought would have been hilarious). And, my niece, Arielle (guess which Princess she was in the race?), heard about our plans and wanted to go with us, so our quest quickly became a family affair.

Fast forward to the half marathon weekend… It started out by meeting Taryn and Geoff at the race expo at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. We headed straight to the Josten’s Center building (per the runDisney website) to pick up our race packets, only, it turned out we were supposed to get them at the HP Field House instead. Minor detail! So, off we went to the Field House and, thankfully, it was pretty empty.

Packet Pick Up

After grabbing the race packets, we headed back to Josten’s to get our race shirts and other goodies and to check out all the cool items designed to make a runner feel like a Princess. This is where the crowds are!

Expo

We spent some time looking at the merchandise (we had sparkle skirts, sweatbands, and tiaras on our list), and then snapped a pre-race photo before going off to enjoy the theme parks.

Let's do this!

The night before the race, I was too excited to sleep very well even though I was tired because we’d spent all day in the Magic Kingdom. I went to bed at 10:00 p.m. but kept waking up throughout the night until my alarm finally went off at 2:15 a.m. Since I had laid out everything just four hours before, I was able to get dressed quickly, kiss my sleeping hubby good-bye, and meet the rest of my family outside the hotel in record time.

We were on the very first bus from the Shades of Green Military Resort where we were staying because we had heard about the nightmare traffic and didn’t want to be late. By 3:30 a.m. we were dropped off at Epcot and we headed to the pre-race area to wait until it was time to go to the corrals.

Morning Epcot

There was a fun DJ to entertain us and he got everyone dancing to warm us up since it was a slightly chilly morning (happily, though, there were no freeze warnings like there had been for the 5k just two days before!).

DJ

Some of the Princesses were posing for pre-race pictures with the runners who were waiting in really longgg lines to see them.

REALLY long lines to get pictures taken with the Princesses!

We felt very lucky to get a picture with Princess Merida from Brave.

Princess Merida

Even though we were there so early, the time flew by and soon the DJ was directing us to go to the start corrals. I’d heard it was a very long walk to get to them, and it’s true. Plus, the corral line is huge and takes up both sides of the street. So, once you get there, you still have to actually find your corral (we were in Corral N) and then get past the cast members who are very serious about being sure you are in the correct one.

Corral N

Finally, the fireworks went off and the race was under way! It took just under an hour for our corral to move up and cross the start line but it was fun to watch the other corrals go, each accompanied by their own fireworks. And, at last, it was our turn.

And, we're off!

Start Line

We were off and running! Taryn I wanted to experience the race together, but Geoff and Arielle had decided to run for time so they took off through the crowd. At that point, though, no one could run very well because there were so many walkers on the narrow road. We had to run on the grass to get around them which was difficult in the darkness.

Right around the first mile marker, cheers started going up from the runners ahead of us. Suddenly, we could see the first elite runner coming down the other side of the course on her way to the finish line. It was amazing to think that we were just starting out and she was already almost at the end of the race! I read later that she’d broken a hip just a year ago, so her win was even more impressive!

12.1 to go!

 

Morning Runners

Mile 2

Not long after, we saw The Black Pearl alongside the road. Captain Jack Sparrow was posing for pictures, but the line was so long, we just took pictures as we ran by. (We ended up doing this throughout the whole race).

Black Pearl

A little farther down the road, the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC) came into view. Awesome! That meant the Magic Kingdom wasn’t too far away.

TTC

$RX179I9

After we ran through the TTC and across a huge Magic Kingdom parking lot, we saw the Queen of Hearts and Cruella deVille posing for pictures. Queen of Hearts and Cruella deVille

And then, we were running past the Contemporary Resort and into the Magic Kingdom!

MK Entrance

The MK streets are pretty narrow and they were lined with people cheering us on.

MK Street

We looked down Main Street and saw the castle up ahead. Knowing we were going to be running through it in just a few minutes was pretty emotional for me. I kept thinking of how hard I had worked to get here, of all the soreness (and some physical therapy after problems with my IT band while training), and how it was all coming down to this moment.

So crowded!

Castle_Robin and Taryn

When we got around to the rear of the castle, the princesses from Frozen were on the balcony talking to the runners.

We're about to shuffle through the castle

Elsa and Anna

At this point, it was impossible to get any farther. People were crowding in to see them and take pictures and we literally couldn’t walk through the castle walkway. We were barely shuffling along in the congestion.

After a few minutes, we finally made it through to the other side and we took off through Frontierland, pausing only to get a picture in front of the Mile 6 marker with Elsa and Anna on it (since I was dressed as Elsa).

Mile 6 with Anna and Elsa

After that, the course went through the back lot of the theme park. I’d always wondered if the back lot was as “magical” as what guests see, but it’s just warehouses and parking lots. There was some magic there for the race, though – we turned a corner and there was Snow White posing for pictures with her Prince and her castle.

Snow White and her Prince

We passed them, heading out of the back lot and down the road toward Epcot. Within a half mile, there was a stage set up and the DJ was telling us we had reached the half way mark! Yay!

Further along, we passed the Grand Floridian Resort and the Polynesian Resort. At this point, I was busy scanning the crowd of spectators, looking for my husband and our friends who were on the sidelines cheering for us (found them!). Our friend, Richard, got a picture of us, lost in the crowd of runners.

Robin_Taryn in the Crowd

After that, miles 8, 9, and 10 just clicked on by. We saw the Disney Heroes (handsome!!) and had another view of Capt. Jack Sparrow and his pirate ship as we doubled back on the course.

The handsome Heroes

Capt. Jack Sparrow and Capt. Barbosa

Then, we got to the dreaded overpass that I’d heard so much about. Sure enough, there was the soldier from Toy Story, telling us to get moving up that hill (“No walking or I’ll make you do pushups!”).

The first overpass

Soooo many runners!

I thought that was the only overpass, but then we found out there were two more to go…acckkk! Thankfully, they weren’t too bad and soon we could see Epcot in the distance.

Epcot in the distance - almost there!

The Fairy Godmother was in Epcot to sprinkle us with some fairy dust and help us finish the remaining mile.

The Fairy Godmother helping us out

Just one tenth of a mile to go!

Mile 13

All too quickly, the Finish Line was just in front of us and our adventure was over.

Almost there!

Our reward? Bling! (And some PowerAde and a snack box of goodies)…not to mention an overwhelming sense of pride and lots of great memories. We did it!

It's all about the bling!

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Devoted mom and non-runner Robin Schiltz took up the sport just to be able to run the Disney Princess Half Marathon with her daughter, Taryn. Since then, she’s been bitten by the running bug so much that she is now co-owner of Triumph Virtual Racing with her daughter and son-in-law. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

Giveaway: Custom Design From Tutu-da-loo!!

Tutu-da-loo-Giveaway

I think that we can all agree that one of the things that make Disney races so fun are the costumes. People get so creative and it adds to the fun atmosphere.  Tutus are generally the costume of choice for most women (and men!) and this is particularly true over Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  Just look at all of these tutus!

Crowds heading up World Drive

When Missy from Tutu-da-loo reached out to me about her custom running tutus, I knew it would be the perfect thing to share will all of you RAD runners!  Missy celebrated her 40th birthday by participating in Walt Disney World’s Inaugural Princess Half Marathon.  This was her first race EVER!  She had never been a runner and was, as she says “by no means in shape.” It was something she really wanted to do and with her sister by her side they did it!.  Obviously, she was hooked!

While she had a wonderful experience, Missy admits to being jealous of everyone in their beautiful tutus. She wore a tiara but, it wasn’t quite the same as having a tutu on.  The decision was then made that she MUST wear a tutu from that point forward. The tutu making began when a friend asked Missy to participate in her first race.  Since then she has made tutus for many other runners and found such joy in making each and every one.

Tutu-da-loo specializes in custom tutus and can accommodate any special requests.  You can pick from a number of colors and styles to create a one of a kind look!  The tutus can be basic like these:

Tutu-da-loo Basic White Tutu

Tutu-da-loo mulit-colored tutu

Or more elaborate like these:

Tutudaloo Wonder Woman inspired tutu

Tutudaloo Snow White inspired tutu

Tutudaloo Belle inspired tutu

Aren’t they fun?!

Now for the great news!  Missy at Tutu-da-loo has offered to make one lucky RAD reader their own basic tutu from one to three colors!  These will be like the white and pink ones above.  Once the winner is picked, you will be able to work directly with Missy to pick your design!  Simply use the forms below to enter up to 12 times…it’s that easy!

The contest will go until Sunday when I will select the winner and announce them in my RAD Recap for May 3, 2014.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
For more information on Tutu-da-loo and to see more designs, you can find her here:
Esty Shop  
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The Inaugural Glass Slipper Challenge Part I – Disney Enchanted 10K

GSC-Enchanted-10K

When your flight gets indefinitely delayed the afternoon before you are about to take on a back to back race challenge, the panic begins to set in.  Will I make it?  Will I have to forego my registration for the first race?  Most importantly…will my vacation be cut short?!?

I found myself in this exact predicament on the Friday before I was about to take on the Glass Slipper Challenge during Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  A thick fog had rolled into White Plains, NY and no planes were landing or taking off from our tiny little airport.  Our plane was diverted to Syracuse and we were patiently waiting for the fog to clear so it could come pick us up and take us to warmer climates.  Sigh…  After about 5 hours of waiting at the airport and frantic texts to Amanda who was waiting patiently to pick us up in Orlando, B and I finally got on the plane and headed south.

By the time we landed, grabbed a bite to eat, got to our hotel, unpacked and settled in, it was about 11:30 pm…MUCH later than I would’ve liked given that my alarm was set to go off at 3:30 am the next morning for the Enchanted 10K.  Luckily we had thought ahead and I had Amanda pick up my race packet earlier that day…phew!

We wearily rolled out of bed, got dressed in record time and headed over to Epcot for day 1 of the Glass Slipper Challenge.  Because we didn’t have time to stop at the store the night before, I didn’t have any food to fuel up with that morning and I was starving.  Thankfully there were food trucks!  I grabbed a banana and was good to go…I don’t know how that egg and cheese bagel would’ve sat during a 10K!

01 Enchanted 10K

03 Enchanted 10K

02 Enchanted 10K

We arrived very close to the start time so after inhaling the banana and making a quick pit stop, we headed into our corral.  I have to admit, I wasn’t feeling great about this race.  I had hoped to be better rested, but things don’t always go as planned.  So we decided that we were going to tackle the Inaugural Enchanted 10K with smiles on our faces no matter what!

All of a sudden, our corral was moving, fireworks were going off and the race had begun!

05 Enchanted 10K

The first half of the course was boooooooring.  These are always the most difficult miles for me as I get moving and all I kept thinking about was how I couldn’t wait to get into World Showcase.  However we did see Elsa from Frozen soon we left the starting line…

06 Enchanted 10K

And the sight of  thousands of runners pouring out of the Epcot toll booths was pretty cool…

07 Enchanted 10K

But that was about it until…

08 Enchanted 10K

Yay!  World Showcase Lagoon!  Can you see the humidity in the air?  Yowza

From here on, the race was a blast!  There were sights to see and characters everywhere.

09 Enchanted 10K

010 Enchanted 10K

011 Enchanted 10K

012 Enchanted 10K

I even snuck in a photo with my favorite character Marie without standing in line!  Amanda has all the tricks 😉

A quick tour around the Boardwalk and Crescent Lake made for very tempting pit stops…

013 Enchanted 10K

I said hi to a few friends, including my girl Cindy, in front of the Beach Club before heading back into Epcot and back out into the parking lot for the big finish.

014 Enchanted 10K

And like that we were done!  It started sprinkling very soon after we crossed the finish line, so we grabbed our medals and made a bee line for the car.

015 Enchanted 10K

This was my first 10K at Walt Disney World and I really do love the distance.  I’m so glad that they have added this to many of the race weekends.  It’s challenging and can be completed fairly quickly, but there really needs to be some sort of entertainment added to Epcot Center Drive…that long stretch was painfully boring.  Plus with the shorter distance, you still have a fair amount of energy left over to get some good park touring in after the race.  I headed over to Animal Kingdom for a few hours to say hi to some animals and get in some fun character time.

Sarah-Chip-and-Dale-Enchanted-10K

Sarah-Rafiki-Enchanted-10K

Later that day we headed to the Osceola County Fair to support Amanda’s daughter at the steer auction.  It was actually a really fun experience for this Northeast city girl!  The big bonus was that I got to hold her 2 week old goat!!  I look like a crazy person…

Sarah-Goat-Enchanted-10K

After the fair we went to Splitsville for dinner where the service was severely lacking, but the food was good.  We also stopped in the new Fit2Run store in Downtown Disney for some KT Tape.  That place is nice…definitely check it out next time you are in the area.

Day 1 of the Glass Slipper Challenge complete!  We headed to bed fairly early to get ready for day 2…my 3rd Princess Half Marathon!

Disclosure: I was invited to attend the entire weekend as media.  My hotel expenses were provided by Disney.  As always, all opinions are 100% my own and I am 100% obsessed with runDisney events.

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2014 Princess Half Marathon Race Weekend Info

Princess-Half-Logo

Final race instructions are now available for Disney’s Princess Half Marathon!  It’s less than a week away princesses (and princes)…are you getting excited?!?  This was my first half marathon and therefore my favorite race weekend…I can’t wait!

New for this year is the addition of the Enchanted 10K and the Glass Slipper Challenge, which is running both the 10K and the half marathon.  Completing that will get you a 3 of these gorgeous medals! Yes, those will be mine!

Princess-Weekend-Medals

The weekend starts with the Fit for a Princess Expo relocated back at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.  I am SO happy about this because last year’s expo was way too close for comfort!  The hours are as follows:

  • Thursday, February 20th: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
  • Friday, February 21st: 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
  • Saturday, February 22nd: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

All race participants  MUST attend the expo to turn in signed waivers (click here to print your waiver) and pick-up race packets, which include your race bib with B-Tag timing devices, race shirt, and gEAR bag.  The gEAR bag also doubles as the bag to use for bag check during the race.  This is also where you will receive any commemorative items you may have purchased during registration.  Transportation will be provided to and from all Walt Disney World Resort Hotels 30 minutes prior to the Expo opening and 30 minutes after closing.

When you arrive at the expo, your first stop will be the HP Field House for Packet Pick Up.  5K pick up will be on the entry level and all other races will be on the lower level.  If you are unable to attend the expo, you can fill out a release waiver and give it to a friend to pick up your packet for you.  Release forms for all events can be found here.

2014-Princess-Expo-Entry

2014-Princess-Expo-Lower

After visiting the HP Field House, head over to the Jostens Center to visit with vendors and pick up your race shirts, visit with the vendors and listen to the speaker series.

2014-Princess-Expo-Vendors

The following are instructions for the Princess Half Marathon and include all of the information you will need about the race, transportation and other events around the weekend.

Here is all of the information you will need for Race Day.

  • Host Resort Transportation  All Walt Disney World resorts, including Shades of Green and Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort, will have transportation available to bring participants to and from ALL events during Disney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend.
    • Bus transportation will be during the following times for the races:
      • Friday, February 21st, 3:30 am – 5:00 am and 7:00 am – 11:00 am
      • Saturday, February 22nd, 3:30 am – 5:00 am and 7:00 am – 10:00 am
      • Sunday, February 23rd, 3:00 am – 5:00 am and 7:00 am – 10:30 am
    • Runners must be on a bus by 4:00 am to ensure they make it into their corrals by the 5:00 am cut-off time.
    • Shuttle service will be suspended between 5:00 am and 7:00 am because of road closures, but will recommence for spectators after 7:00 am.  Traffic into the Epcot parking lot will also be suspended at this time and all cars will be routed to the Magic Kingdom Parking lot where spectators can take the monorail to Epcot.
    • After the race, buses will be set by resort in the Family Reunion Area to take all participants back to their resorts until 10:30 am.
    • Guests staying at monorail resorts will be able to take the monorail to and from Epcot for the races.
  • Driving Directions  If not staying at a host resort, participants will need to provide their own transportation to all events.  As usual, Disney says to EXPECT SIGNIFICANT DELAYS so make sure you leave yourself enough time.  Road closures will begin at 3:30 am, so you will want to try to arrive at Epcot before then.  If that isn’t possible, be sure to arrive at Epcot and be parked by 4:30 am since it is about a 20 minute walk to the starting corrals from the parking lot and you must be in there by 5:00 am.
  • Costumes This is one of the best parts of Disney races…the costumes!  Runners get so creative and it’s so fun to see.  Please note that runners are NOT allowed to wear a face mask of any kind and will be removed from the course if this is violated.  Who are you dressing up as?
  • Bag Check  Participants MUST use the clear bag provided at the expo to check any belongings during the race and affix the label with their bib number on the outside.  The bag check tents are located in the Family Reunion Area in the Epcot parking lot.  All bags must be checked prior to walking over to the start corrals. 
  • Start Corrals  Corrals for the 5K and 10K are in the the Epcot Center parking lot and the start corrals for the half marathon are located on Epcot Center Drive.  It takes about 20 minutes to walk to the half marathon starting corrals from the holding area, so you will want to head over there no later than 4:30 am.  Your corral will be listed on your race bib and you will only be granted access to that corral or one behind you.   You can find your corral placement by printing your waiver and finding the corresponding corral for your bib number.

2014-Princess-5K-10K-Corrals

2014-Princess-Half-Corrals

2014-Princess-Half-Corral-Placement

2014-Glass-Slipper-Challenge-Corrals

For the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge, we had one bib for both the 10K and half marathon, so we were in the same corral for both.  I’m a little confused about the 10K corrals since it looks like they only go up to E, however the Glass Slipper Challenge corral assignment go up to P.  So either we’ll have 2 bibs or the 10K corrals will just be a free for all…

  • Race Bibs  Bibs must be centered on the front of your shirt.  Safety pins will be provided in your race packet at the expo.  Do not bend our fold your bib, as the ChronoTrack B-tag will be affixed to the back of the bib which will be used to track your time.  If your bib is not properly centered, damaged or covered, your time may not be recorded properly.  Your bib will also be used for the on course photographers, so make sure the number is clearly visible and smile for that camera 🙂
  • Pacing Requirements Remember, you must keep a minimum of 16-minutes per mile throughout the race or you will run the risk of being picked up and brought to the finish line.  Keep this in mind if you a planning to stop for character photos.  Those lines can get long and it’s easy to lose track of time.  Pace cyclists will be on the course to let you know if you have fallen behind.
  • Coast to Coast Race Challenge  Participants in the challenge will be given a wristband at the expo that must be worn during the race.  After completion, proceed to the Coast to Coast tent to claim your super awesome medal!  If you ran the Tinker Bell Half Marathon in January, you will be able to get the brand new PINK Coast to Coast medal!

Looking for the course maps?  Here you go!

Cinderella Royal Family 5K & Princess Enchanted 10K

10K 5K Courses Map

Princess Half Marathon

HalfMarathon14_MapPRGM

Notice a difference in the entrance to the Magic Kingdom?  It looks like we’ll be running through the main entrance instead of through backstage and onto Main Street.  That will be pretty awesome!

Kids Races

2014-Princess-Kids-Map

I LOVE how the Kids Races are in Epcot.  What an exciting 1-Mile Run to go through Future World!

Other events for the weekend include the Pasta in the Park Party and the Happily Ever After Party at Downtown Disney!  More information is available over on the runDisney website including the Official Program for the weekend. Also, check out my packing tips as you get ready for travel…sadly we don’t all have a Fairy Godmother to do that for us.

And make sure to check out my experience from the last 2 years at Princess Half Marathon Weekend…it’s a BLAST!

2013

2012

Make sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get all the latest from the race weekend and please make sure to say hi!!

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RAD Recap for February 9, 2014

This past month has been emotionally and physically draining for me.  I’m not quite ready to get into all of the details about what has ben going on, but I can’t thank all of my amazing guests who have, and will continue to contribute to RAD.  Not only has it helped me stay on top of all things runDisney, but it has brought a whole new feel and community to this blog that I’m loving.  I hope you are too.

This week was all about Tinker Bell.  Kinnereth returned to recap her experience at the Tinker Bell Half Marathon last month.

2014-Tink-Recap1

Then Liliane recapped the same race, but as a first time half marathoner while running for the Special Olympics Team!

Tink-Half-Liliane-To the Castle

The more I read about this race, the more I want to run it.  It just looks like so much fun!

There were some interesting discussions around the runDisney blogosphere this week about how some race veterans are taking a break from running at Disney for a while.  I have to admit that I’ve had some similar feelings lately, especially when it comes to the increasing price, crowded courses and the community drama, but I’m not sure that I’m ready to give it all up just yet.  Take a look at Megan’s post on What’s Wrong with runDisney and Krissy’s post In Defense of Both Sides and let me know where you fit in.  I’d love the hear your thoughts on these issues…it’s a tough one.

In some positive news this week, I got a new car!!  It was sad to give up my beloved Gretta after 6.5 years, but a new beginning is just what I needed.

Gretta7

Also, we’re now less than 2 weeks away from Princess Half Marathon Weekend (my favorite!) and I finally got all of my travel details squared away.  Plus my MagicBands arrived, which makes it even more exciting!  Get ready for some shenanigans from me and my girl Amanda!

MagicBands-Princess

 

Many people have been asking me about an official RAD meet-up over Princess Weekend, but at this time I don’t think that I will be hosting one.  However that doesn’t mean that I don’t want to see, meet and hang out with as many of you as possible.  If you see me around, please stop me and say hi!  Tweet me, send me a Facebook message, or reach out on Instagram.  I will all over the World and would love to meet up!

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