Okay so this is the first post completely unrelated to PA school….but my mom and I ran the Disney Star Wars Half Marathon-the Dark Side this weekend! Woo!!
For those of you who don’t know, every year Disney does different marathon weekends at their parks in both California and Florida. TONS of people do them, they sell out incredibly quickly, and are a ridiculous amount of fun. There’s kid races, a 5k, 10k, and half marathon. But all of them have a different theme! Last year, I ran the Princess Half Marathon by myself, and convinced my mom to sign up with me for a run this year. Plus, since Disney just bought Star Wars, it was the first ever Star Wars Half Marathon weekend.
This was a completely new course that Disney was trying out, and it did have some kinks. At a bunch of spots throughout, the course was too narrow for people to be able to run. Everyone was walking, so we had to walk too. We ran through Epcot to Hollywood Studios to Animal Kingdom and then finished at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports. Along the way were different photo opportunities with Chewy, Storm Troopers, Darth Varder, and so many more.
Another slight difference in this race was Disney changed a lot of the rules regarding costumes. Last year, when I ran the Princess Half, most everyone was dressed up in elaborate costumes with hair and makeup. There was a ton of dresses and capes. This yea, there was more rules regarding what you could carry, how long your cape could be, and that there could be no masks covering your face. Most people went simple with just funny shirts. However, there were still some crazy costumes that were great to see.
Mom and I did pretty good until about mile 6. Then came the fall. Apparently mom was throwing away her water cup, somehow slipped and landed on the ground. All I know is a turned around and she’s just laying there. This is so unbelievably typical of my mom – she once tripped in New York City and cut open her face and then had to stand in line for Broadway tickets with a napkin. Well, turns out she’s totally okay with just a little scrapped knee. But we end up going to the medical tent and start patching her up. Next thing I know, the balloons are coming.
*Disney wants you to keep a 16 minute mile pace. They have people who keep that pace with balloons tied to them (this year the balloons were Death Stars). If you get behind the balloon, you get “sweeped” which is where Disney takes you across the finish line on a bus. Of course, its understandable since Disney needs to open the parks and roads at a specific time.*
Now, we had been doing really well, but had stopped to take pictures along the way and wasted some of our time. Mom and I start running and get well ahead of the balloons. But, next thing I know, she wants to stop at the LONGEST bathroom line I have ever seen. So of course, the balloons pass us. This was like mile 8. The rest of the time was just us trying to keep ahead of the balloons (and doing very well at it). This was when it got so frustrating that the course was so narrow and you couldn’t always run.
Overall, it was a ton of fun and totally worth the money. At the end, we got a super cool medal that had both the Emperor and Darth Varder on it. And of course, we can officially say we ran a half marathon. So, if you ever get the chance and like Disney and running, you should definitely sign up for a Disney race. Its a great experience and wonderful start for people who aren’t too serious about running.
Comment below on your thoughts about Disney Marathons.
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