Posts Tagged by race recap

Inaugural Walt Disney World Minnie Mouse 10K Race Recap

10Ks are a great race distance.  More challenging than a 5K, but not as big of a commitment as a half marathon.  It’s a great next step for beginner runners who are looking to take it up a notch.  I’m so glad runDisney added this distance to the race roster and Ashley is here to give us a recap of the inaugural Walt Disney World 10K over Marathon Weekend.  It looked like it was a great time and I love those Minnie medals!

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Soon after running the Disney Princess Half Marathon, I started signing up for more-and-more long-distance races, and I nervously signed up to run the 2014 Walt Disney World Marathon. At the same time, I was excited to see that the weekend was featuring an inaugural 10k spotlighting Minnie Mouse herself! I knew I had to do it. (Hubby and I each picked 2 races for the weekend. He chose to train for the Goofy Challenge.)

I was looking forward to every aspect of our trip: the flight, the Expo, the 10k, Magic Kingdom, the half, Downtown Disney, the full, and a celebratory dinner at ‘Ohana, all of which I’ll be recapping on my blog, Running MOMmentum. Check back for updates!

{What I ate} Although we had made 3 ADRs for our trip, we didn’t really have plans for dinner Thursday night other than finding something at our resort, Pop Century. After a full day of traveling and walking around ESPN for the Expo, we were ravenous! As luck would have it, Wide World of Sports was offering a runners’ special of chicken alfredo penne pasta with a side of bread – just steps outside of Expo in the HP Field House and where Jeff Galloway was speaking! The food was quick, yummy, affordable, and the perfect carb-load! On Friday morning, I opted for a Zone bar and some Gatorade that my husband had whipped up from an airport-friendly powder mix.

{What I wore} I bought a new hot pink tank from Lululemon and paired it with purple C9 running shorts that I found on clearance at Target just in time for the race! I also sported a purple SweatyBand thin glittery headband, pearl earrings, hot pink Mizuno Wave Inspire 9s, a black and hot pink SPIBelt, and Brooks running socks. Oh and loads of (pink) KT tape on my feet.

Call me crazy, but I woke up at 2:30 on race morning to STRAIGHTEN MY HAIR. If you have curly hair like me, you can relate. (But of course, in the humid Florida air, it was curly again by the time the race started!)

Catching the shuttle from Pop Century to Epcot was no problem – I was at Epcot by 4:07 AM. I’m not sure how they assigned the corrals for this race, but I found mine pretty easily (there were only 5, A-E). My sister was in a different corral with her friends, and I headed over to wish them luck before the race. I ended up deciding to tag along with them for the run, knowing that they wanted to take it super easy before the marathon on Sunday. I knew it’d be more fun to run this race in a group.

Picture 1 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

Just before it was our turn to run at 6 AM, I got a phone call from the superintendent of the school system where I work as a School Counselor. He was calling to notify us that schools were on a 2-hour delay due to icy roads! I had to laugh to myself, as I wore my shorts and tank top.

Picture 2 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

True to the character of runDisney, each corral started with a beautiful crisscross of shimmery fireworks.

We were off and running! The group was taking it slowly to save energy for the marathon, so I took their cue and used the time to enjoy the race. I ran holding a camera in each hand – my Canon S90 in my right hand, my iPhone in my left. These helped me remember specific details, mile markers, and times.

Picture 3 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

Despite holding two cameras, there wasn’t much to photograph until Mile 3 at Epcot. Most of the race before Epcot was all highway, with one photo stop with Peter Pan and Wendy that we skipped. Soon we were entering World Showcase, which was a photo op in-and-of itself! We stopped to admire the gorgeous golden lights reflecting from World Showcase onto the lagoon.

Picture 4 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

Picture 5 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

France is still one of my favorite backdrops in World Showcase. I remember stopping there for chocolate croissants last year with my family and then-7-month-old son, whom I nursed on a park bench outside the patisserie. I just love the fountains!

Picture 6 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

Goofy was positioned soon after, but we didn’t stop to wait in line. He was, oddly enough, wearing a football uniform. (Reason?) After finishing Mile 5, I scoped out the Epcot resorts sprinkled around the boardwalk, toeing the sand and once again not believing my luck that I was not back in icy Virginia!

Picture 7 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

The race path took us under the monorail line and behind a photo spot with Chip ‘n Dale, whom we’d see after both the half and full marathons later that weekend. Spaceship Earth came into perfect view and Mile 5 turned into Mile 6 right afterward.

Picture 8 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

At that point, I recognized the large puppets from the Princess Half, which were leftover from the Mile 20 celebration at Disney Marathon Weekend 2013. I spotted Genie and Lumiere, but not Sebastian. The gospel choir was also conspicuously missing from the 10k, although they reappeared for the longer races.

Picture 9 - Minnie 10 - Ashley

I’m always excited to see the finish line, but Disney races are so exciting that it’s also sad for them to be over! We began the final 0.2 mile stretch toward the finish line and decided to cross all together in a straight line. And finish we did! We were handed our medals, which felt very unceremonious to me.

Picture 10 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

Picture 11 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

We met the rest of our boys at the finish line – they had found each other after finishing the 10k leg of Dopey. runDisney had food for us – bananas, a food box (with handles!), water, and Powerade. The food box selections remained identical for every race over the four-day race weekend. It contained: Ocean Spray Craisins, a FreshNap wipe, a tub of Hickory Farms White Cheddar, Skittles (almost my whole bag was yellow!), a Builder’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bar, almond pops with blueberries, and sea salt corn chips.

Picture 12 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

I took one picture of Minnie after the race but decided to bypass her line, since I knew I’d see her at Magic Kingdom later that day. We soon hopped onto our shuttle back to Pop Century so that we could shower and snack a bit before reapplying our sunscreen and heading out to Magic Kingdom for the day!

Picture 13 - Minnie 10k - Ashley

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I’m so excited to be writing a race recap for Running at Disney today! I’m Ashley, and I blog over at Running MOMentum. I’m an elementary school counselor by day, but when I am home, I’m a cloth-diapering, nursing, babywearing mommy to my sweet boy. My husband and I are living in a toddler’s world! Blogging is my way of processing and reflecting on my experiences and relishing in the loves of my life – my faith, my family, my friends, and my experiences!

I ran cross country in high school but took a hiatus after a spinal fusion, and only recently returned to running about a year before my son was born. My favorite races have been at Disney – the 2013 Princess Half Marathon, the 2014 Inaugural Minnie 10k, and the 2014 Walt Disney World Marathon! You might also catch me taking pictures, writing, finding freebies, attempting to cook, attending Bible study, scouring Pinterest, and scrolling through Bloglovin. Virginia has always been home to me, my husband, our son, and our sprightly Jack Russell Terrier, Scout.

2014 Disney Family Fun Run 5K Race Recap

Sarah Norris is becoming quite the seasoned 5K runner!!  I’m excited to welcome her back to recap her experience at her 3rd 5K 3 months – the 2014 Disney Family Fun Run 5K.  Take it away Sarah!  

Disney’s Marathon Weekend offers an exciting array of events for guests to participate in. From the kid’s events to the full marathon, it’s jam packed with races. This year, I had the chance to participate in the Family Fun Run 5K – adding another 5K to my 5K circuit during this 2013-2014 runDisney season. Having run the Happy Haunted 5K during the Tower of Terror Weekend and the Jingle Jungle 5K during Wine & Dine, I thought I was well prepared for the chaos that is Marathon Weekend. However as I discovered this weekend turned out to be a whirlwind of an experience.

Sarah_5K_Sign

The first thing I did during Marathon Weekend was head to the race expo to pick up my bib and race packet. The expo opened at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, January 8th, and I arrived around 11:30 a.m. The parking lot was the fullest I have seen for any expo that I’ve been to so far.

As with the Wine & Dine Half Marathon runners of the 5K pick up their bibs in the HP Field House and then pick up their t-shirts in the Jostens Center where the expo takes place. During Wine & Dine, I picked up my bib down on the main floor of the HP Field House, this time I had to take a winding path throughout the 2nd floor to find the 5K bib picket. The signs weren’t quite as clearly marked as one would expect; however there were plenty of volunteers on hand to direct runners to the right spot.

When I got to the bib pick up area, my line was fairly short. In fact, the entire 5K bib pick up area was very quiet considering. I quickly obtained my bib and headed over to the Jostens Center for my t-shirt and to explore the expo offerings.

Marathon_Race_Expo

I have to say that I really loved the shirts that they had for runners of the 5K. They were quite cute, and very bright. You wouldn’t get lost wearing this day-glow green shirt. My bag also contained some small swag – a Clif Bar and a voucher for a free gift from Fit2Run’s Downtown Disney location. I did later redeem that voucher for a bag.

Family_Fun_Run_5K_Tshirt

The expo itself is impressive. There are tons of booths with just about everything you could think of for runners from clothing to gear. The most popular booth was New Balance, as they unveiled their new Disney inspired running shoes this year. As I would hear throughout the weekend, appointments to try on shoes booked up quickly and shoes sizes sold out fast. There were also plenty of runDisney official merchandise spots where you could grab commemorative race swag. There were tons of freebies given out, and one of my favorite spots – the Chiquita Banana/Fresh Express Plinko station!

In preparation for the race, I tried to take it easy and rest. Of course, bedtime was later than I wanted it to be, especially with my 4:30 a.m. wake-up call for the race. One handy tip that I’ve learned after participating in runDisney races is to have all of my gear laid out and ready to go for the morning. This allows for stress-free wake-up and race prep early in the morning. I always have a Plant Fusion protein shake before I head out the door for the race.

As with everything I experienced during the Marathon Weekend, the 5K was packed. It took longer than I anticipated getting into Epcot, where the race was held. Thankfully, I gave myself plenty of time. After parking, I headed through the winding maze that was the Epcot parking lot pre-race area. I finally made it to my corral and got myself situated. Disney has been making smaller corrals for these races, and I think that’s actually a good thing. It means they are less crowded and you also get a better chance of being closer to the front.

Family_Fun_Run_5K_PreRace

I will say that the pre-race entertainment seemed somewhat lacking. I don’t know if it’s because there was so much at the Happy Haunted 5K and the Jingle Jungle 5K but this one seemed rather low-key. There was still a DJ with lots of dance music but it just didn’t have as much of a festive vibe as those other 5Ks.

Family_Fun_Run_Corrals

Before I knew it, 6:15 a.m. was upon us, and it was time for the race. Because I was in corral D, it took a bit for the race to begin. My by count, my corral left the start line about 20 minutes after the race itself began. One of my favorite things about this race – the Fireworks! Not every runDisney 5K has fireworks that go off at the start line, and I was super excited that they did at this one. It totally got me into the runDisney spirit.

Because this was a larger race, the running areas were fairly crowded. They told us before the race began that there were 10,000 5K participants: 7,000 were running the Dopey Challenge (so inspiring!) and 3,000 were running the traditional 5K. That’s a lot of people. One of the things I did notice is that the race etiquette was better at this race than some of the previous ones I experienced.

Family_Fun_Run_Start

The race itself goes through backstage of Epcot into the World Showcase and back to the Epcot parking lot. In general, I liked this race path – though I think I liked the Animal Kingdom path better. My only major complaint was that there were very few character spots. There were only 4 that I counted and many were packed. The Dopey character meet was lined up clear from Germany where it began through to the end of the Italy pavilion. After running the other 5Ks this season, I would say this one was seriously lacking in character photo ops.

Sarah_Italy_Pavilion

The major challenge of this race was the weather. Not only was it slightly chillier with temperatures in the high 50s and low 60s, but it was also raining off and on. This was the first rainy race I had experienced, and I will say that my pace definitely suffered because of this. In fact, I really didn’t stop much throughout the race because of the poor weather. It was hard to see with my glasses!

Overall, I will say that runDisney’s events are amazing and really inspire me to continue to run. From the amazing people that I meet every race to the awe-inspiring Dopey Challenge runners, I was so proud to be a part of this event. Thank you to the runDisney team, Disney cast members, and amazing volunteers for making this race weekend so wonderful. I can’t wait until the Princess Half Marathon Weekend where I’ll be running the Royal Family 5K!

Family_Fun_Run_Bib_Medal

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Sarah_Donald_runDisney_AvatarSarah Norris is the owner of Gluten Free & Dairy Free at WDW. She began her first runDisney races in 2013 with the Happy Haunted 5K and has had the runDisney bug ever since. She writes about her experiences as a newer runner, as well as running with Crohn’s and a special diet.
Find Sarah here:  Website   Facebook   Twitter   Pinterest

 

Happy Haunted 5K Trail Run Recap

I’m excited to welcome Sarah Norris from Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free in WDW back for another runDisney 5K recap!  Today she takes us along on the Happy Haunted 5K Trail Run, which was her first race ever!  I’m beyond proud of Sarah for completing her first race and I know you will be too…

If you had asked me a year ago if I would be running a race, I probably would have looked at you like you were nuts. The idea of running used to be a completely foreign concept to me, but this past year – as many New Year’s resolutions are started – I wanted to try what I thought to be an unattainable fitness goal. I have to admit that running scared me, but I was quickly encouraged by Sarah who was inspiring me with her own running. Like Sarah, I also suffer from IBD and it was so inspiring to see her pursuing her fitness goals and dreams. She really did give me the courage to pursue my running.  (Thanks so much!!!)

I decided to sign up for the Happy Haunted 5K held during the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Race Weekend. A 5K seemed like a reasonable goal and with my training using Jeff Galloway’s walk/run method, I was ready to embark on a journey with running! I eagerly anticipated this race and was excited when the big day finally came.

TOTSign

The Happy Haunted 5K for the 2013-2014 race season took place in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. It was considered a “trail run” meaning that it took place partially on a trail surrounding the perimeter of the complex. The race was scheduled for 7:30 a.m.

The day before the race, I headed over to the expo center at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex to pick up my bib, race shirt, and check out the expo. Some of my favorite fitness places were there, like Sparkle Athletic (they have awesome sparkle skirts!), Fit2Run Fitness store and of course official merchandise. I got to the expo around 12:20 p.m. on Friday, and the expo center opened at noon. It was already really busy there! Of course, later I heard that this wasn’t bad at all, but as a first timer, I was definitely not sure what to expect. I waited in line outside to get into the center for about 10 minutes, and then they let me in.

In my personal opinion, the expo seemed rather small (smaller than I expected) and there were not a lot of booths. Because this is a smaller runDisney event the bib pick-up was also held in the Jostens Center as well. As I would learn later, bib & packet pick-up is typically housed in the HP Field House next door. I heard someone say that there were about 14,000 runners at the Tower of Terror Ten Miler and 5,000 at the Happy Haunted 5K.

ToT-Expo-Floor

Because bib & packet pickup were housed in the same facility, it was a little crammed. Thankfully, I was so excited to see it all the long line didn’t faze me. Once I got my bib, I got into the line to get my race t-shirt. I wasn’t planning on wearing this for the race, but I did want to make sure I picked it up. It was a really cute shirt too and makes for a great souvenir. While the packet pick-up and t-shirt lines were long, perhaps the longest lines were at the official race merchandise station. I have heard that they often run out of the merchandise, so it’s best to get there early. I have to say, based on the lines I believe that is probably true!

Running_Outfit

I tried to take it easy the day before the race, but I admit I was too excited! I was thrilled to see Sarah at her RAD meetup that afternoon and catch up and chat with lots of runDisney enthusiasts. There’s just something really special about other runDisney folks. I also got to enjoy dinner with some blog readers and just enjoy the evening. Early bedtime was mandatory.

My family & I got up at 5:30 a.m. and got to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex around 6:15 a.m. That gave us time to get in, look around, and get settled. We got to see all the fun entertainment, though I didn’t get a photo with Mickey who was greeting runners in his festive Halloween garb. Rudy Novotny and John Pelkey were busily keeping the race crowd pumped up with lots of music and fun, though I have to admit I’m never quite ready for dance music at 6:30 a.m. At about 7 a.m., I headed into the runners only section where the corrals were while my family waited outside. I was placed in corral C which was the middle of the road for corral placement. The corrals at this race were A-F, so I was glad I wasn’t dead last. They base corral placement on your time of registration, not your pace which is nice.

Sarah_HH5K

At 7:30 a.m. we had one spooooky surprise! The headless horseman came bounding through the stadium, at full tilt too. This is not the slow trot that the Headless Horseman does during MNSSHP! It was really cool to see and the music was just awesome! Once the Headless Horseman was off…ha literally with his head…it was time for corral A to go through. Then, soon came the time for corral C to head off. This was it! My family caught a great video of me leaving. I tried to stay to the side 1) because I’m slow and 2) because my family was over in that direction.

HH5K_Corrals

The race take-off went really smoothly I thought. There was minimal bottlenecking. The track was really good, so it was nice to run on. Once we ran through a portion of the track, we headed into wooded paths. These were definitely both fun & challenging. The sand on the paths can make it harder to run, especially if you aren’t used to running in sand. The paths weren’t too horribly narrow and thankfully, it was light outside so you could see well. Despite the tough trail for a newer runner, I felt really good and ran the entire first two miles—something I had not even done at home, as I was still utilizing walk/run in my running. It felt really empowering to be other with other runners of all levels and just out there having a good time. It was also a really hot and humid Florida fall day, so I made sure to take it easy on my pace and not push it. I also made sure to stop at the 2 water stations to drink. I knew that would be important given the heat.

Happy_Haunted_5K_Trail

Once you hit the last stretch of the race, you head back to the track again. There were tons of photographers there taking official photos. There were also a lot of opportunities on the trail and track to take photos with Disney characters, some villains and some in Halloween costumes. I didn’t get one photo with a character on this race. I was nervous I would be too slow and be swept by the race sweepers but thankfully, I finished right about the middle pace, clocking in around 55 minutes. It was amazing to see how people just cheer you on through these races and encourage you. From the fantastic volunteers to the folks watching, each of them went out of their way to cheer everyone on!

Sarah_Medal_HH5K

As soon as I finished my race, I made sure to get my medal (which was adorable), my water, banana, and fitness box. It’s nice that Disney provides these to runners after they finish. One thing I learned as someone with dietary restrictions (I can’t have gluten or dairy in additions to my Crohn’s disease restrictions), that I needed to bring some of my running nutritional support from home. I also enjoyed a big breakfast at Kona Café after the race!

As far as theming and organization, this race was really well done. The Halloween touches and overall ambiance really made this race special, and I was really pleased that this was my first runDisney race experience. Disney really knows how to put on a race, and I have to say, I officially have the runDisney bug now!

Make sure to read Sarah’s recap of her second race, the Jingle Jungle 5K, and cheer her on in January for the Disney Family Fun Run 5K!

Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5K Race Recap

Today my friend Sarah Norris (hey…awesome name!) of Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free in WDW recaps the Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5K which took place over the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend.  This is Sarah’s 2nd 5K and it has been amazing to see her progress over the past few months.  She is a fellow sufferer of IBD and I just love hearing positive experiences for those of us that often struggle.  She’s defying the odds and I’m so proud to call her my friend and follow her running journey.  I know you will to!  Take it away Sarah!  

It’s hard to believe that not that long ago, I had my first runDisney race. I ran the Happy Haunted 5K (which was my first race ever). In that race, I was quite nervous as a first-time racer but with one race under my belt, I was feeling very excited for the Jingle Jungle 5K. This race was held during the Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend and was held at the Animal Kingdom Theme Park. The race was scheduled for 7 a.m.

01 JJ5K_Wine_Dine_Sign

I knew going in this race was going to be a lot bigger, so I made sure to get to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex early on Friday. This expo opened up earlier than the Tower of Terror Ten Miler Weekend race, opening at 10 a.m. instead of noon. I like getting my bib & packet pick-up first so that I’m not feeling stressed and can walk the expo more. This time packet pick-up was in the HP Field House. The crowds seemed lower to me, and I’m not sure if it was just time of day or if the separation of the pick-up & expo made the crowds seem lower. I also thought it was a nice touch that they had an official merchandise station both in the HP Field House and the Jostens Center. (2012 Wine & Dine Health & Fitness Expo Recap)

I was a little concerned my corral placement would be further back in this race because my race bib number was higher this time. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see I was placed in corral B. Once I got my bib, I headed to the Jostens Center for some retail therapy and to pick up my race shirt. I liked the Jingle Jungle 5K shirt better than the Halloween one, but I’m also partial to the holidays. Overall, I’ve liked both shirts I’ve been given so far.

02 JJ5K_Jing_Jungle_Shirts

I picked up a few last minute race costume additions. In my first race, I didn’t wear a costume and for this race I really wanted to wear something fun. I chose a sparkle skirt from Sparkle Athletic and a sparkly headband from Sparkly Soul. Yes, I sparkled from head to toe!

03 JJ5K_Jiingle_Jungle_Running_Outfit

The first thing I noticed was that the expo was definitely bigger this time with a lot more booths. There were also a lot of vendors who were not present at the previous expo. I particularly liked the Chiquita booth where you could play Chiquita banana plinko. So much fun. Many of the vendors & booths gave out nice freebies and samples. I even lucked out and scored a gift card to Fit2Run, which is a local Florida fitness store chain (with a location that opened at Downtown Disney during Wine & Dine weekend). I also ran into some friends at this race, including my friend Jen from Travel Girl on the Run! She is also a fellow runner with Crohn’s disease, and it’s really nice that we can all share our experiences with one another, especially IBD nutrition and running.

04 JJ5K_Wine_Dine_Expo

This time, I made sure to relax and unwind before my race. I was staying conveniently at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge – Kidani Village, which is so close to the Animal Kingdom Park. It made for an easy drive in the morning before the race. That evening, my family and I enjoyed a low-key meal at Kouzzina. And then, of course, early bedtime. To me, early bedtime is crucial. Because of my Crohn’s disease, I’m prone to chronic fatigue and I need to make sure I get sleep.

Once the 5 a.m. wakeup came, I was ready to go. I changed into my race outfit and also got my bib on. I then made sure to drink a protein shake. One of the biggest struggles I had the last time was nutrition, so I wanted to support myself as much as possible. I prefer the Plant Fusion chocolate raspberry shake with water. Bring a portable shaker, and you’re good to go! I also packed myself a Gu, which I normally wouldn’t consume on my short runs but because I have Crohn’s and often lose a lot of salt (plus I drink a lot) I found I really needed something to replace my body with after my run the last time. I also tend to push myself in these races so it was extra crucial. Gu’s are gluten free & dairy free so it was great to have on hand.

05 JJ5K_Gu

Once we got to the Animal Kingdom parking lot, one of the big differences I noticed was that the corral setup was very different. It seemed a lot more compact and also a little bit more crowded. The lines for the character and holiday photos were huge, so I didn’t get a chance to officially pose in them. I did however get an unofficial one by standing off to the side. The neatest thing at this race was the fake snow. Yes, you read that right—snow! They use soap bubbles to create snow effects, and it’s really cool. Along with occasional holiday music, this put me in the holiday spirit and was so fitting for this race. I will say they didn’t play as many holiday songs as I would have thought. It was way more dance music. Dance music is just not my thing at 5:30 a.m.

06 JJ5K_Sarah_Holiday

I finally made it to my corral and made sure to stick to the side. I don’t know why, but I like the sides. Plus, I get to chat with my family too! They surprised me with a sign to give me motivation to run harder. It was really nice of them to be there to cheer me on so early.

07 JJ5K_Rundisney_Sign

Before I knew it, it was time to run! This race didn’t have quite as much fanfare as the Happy Haunted 5K did, and I was a little disappointed in that. It just seemed like it was rather rushed and not quite as much anticipation/build-up. But I will say that the race inside the park made up for that.

The first mile or so was in the parking lot. That was pretty boring! It was cool because there were a lot of folks around chatting and having fun, but as far as decor, there wasn’t really anything. You could hear mostly just the announcers & music from the start of the race. Then when you got into the park, things got way more magical!

I will just say that I adore the Animal Kingdom and this was such a great place for a race. There were many character spots, and I personally wanted to try to get a least one photo. I skipped most of them primarily due to long lines & lack of theming. I like many of the characters but I was hoping more of them would be dressed in holiday costumes. The park had lots of holiday music playing and it was just neat to run past the Tree of Life and Expedition Everest.

08 JJ5K_Sarah_EE

Another good tip is to make sure you hit all of the water stations, even if you don’t think you need to. It was much cooler than the Happy Haunted 5K but still a good idea to hydrate whenever possible. And thank those amazing volunteers who are helping out! They rock!

The one character spot I missed but really regretted was with Chip & Dale. I love those chipmunks and they were so cute in holiday garb. But the line was really long. I was glad I was able to meet up with Donald later in the race. Because it was closer to the end of the race, and I felt that my pace was good, I decided to stop for the holiday photo with Donald. And I’m so glad I did because it’s one of my most favorite photos from the race.

09 JJ5K_Sarah_Donald_runDisney

Before I knew it the race was over! It was definitely a really awesome race. Not only was the theming great, but I also felt more confident as a runner (pushed it this time and set a 13:52 mile pace throughout the entire race). My race time was 45:51 though I paused my app when I met with Donald making my actual time in the race 49 minutes! That was definitely a huge jump, and gave me even more confidence to keep training hard for the upcoming Marathon weekend 5K.

After the race, my family and I went back to the Animal Kingdom Lodge to celebrate with breakfast at Boma. There were tons of Jingle Jungle 5K racers at the breakfast, as you could see a lot of “race bling” throughout the restaurant. Overall, I really enjoyed this race. I’m even more excited now for the next race which will be the Family Fun Run 5K at Marathon weekend.

10 JJ5K_Sarah_Medal

New Ribbon for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Medal!

Finisher PhotoThe medal for The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler is undoubtedly one of the coolest runDisney medals (or ANY race medals) out there.  It glows in the dark, has a moving elevator and features one of the coolest attractions in all of Walt Disney World…how can you go wrong?!

For the inaugural year, the theme of the medal seemed to be orange, which goes along with the Halloween theme of that whole race weekend.  The medal ribbon was orange, the logo background was orange, etc…  I actually liked this since it was very different from the other races the runDisney offers.  But this year, it looks like they are changing it up.

Stitch has been a synonymous character with The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction (not sure why…) and you can find him in a lot of the attraction merchandise dressed at a bellhop.  He was also on the “I Did It” shirt for the race last year.

I Did It Shirt

So it only makes sense that he would be now be featured on the medal ribbon right??  Don’t worry, the super cool medal is still the same!

2013 ToT Medal 2013 ToT Medal Close UpI have to say, I don’t love the red and wish they would’ve stuck to the bright orange.  However, I surprisingly like the addition of Stitch.  It adds that Disney touch.

What do you think of the new medal ribbon?

If you’re looking for more information on The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler, check out my 2012 race recap and the Health & Fitness Expo!

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