Friday 4pm: finish a 23 mile training run.
Friday 8pm: jump on trampolines with friends for one hour at Rebounderz
Saturday 7am: 3 mile recovery run + bootcamp class before work
Saturday 2pm: my lovely friend Lori offers me a registration to the Wine and Dine Half Marathon that night!
The last thing I thought I was going to do Saturday night is run a half marathon and hang out at the Food and Wine Festival! I’m so thankful I had the opportunity because it was such a fun night and I’m still on a high from it.
I’ve done the Disney Marathon and Princess Half several times, but the WIne and Dine was definitely my overall favorite so far! The crowds gathered in a huge open field with a stage before the race. There was music and half the crowd was in costume… gotta love Disney!
A little bit before 10pm we found our race corral to wait for the fireworks to begin. We were in corral F… the very last corral. After 20 minutes or so our corral passed the finish line and it felt like I was running into a wall. I relate Disney races with slower crowds and big groups of people taking up lots of space, but this was worse than ever. Usually I will run in the grass to pass big groups, but the walkers and slow joggers even took over the grass off the course!
I didn’t stop dodging and weaving in and out of crowds the whole race. There were even several points that we had to come to a stop because the course narrowed. That part was not fun.
My splits show the points the crowds were especially bad. I didn’t stop throughout the race and tried to keep a consistent pace, only slowing when I hit a wall of people. This is what that looked like:
Mile 1: 10:54
Mile 2: 9:50
Mile 3: 9:59
Mile 4: 10:27
Mile 5: 9:46
Mile 6: 9:40
Mile 7: 9:41
Mile 8: 10:15
Mile 9: 11:14
Mile 10: 9:50
Mile 11: 9:39
Mile 12: 9:44
Mile 13: 9:18
Mile 14: 8:23
13.42 miles- 2:13:48- 9:58 average pace
With my long run the day before and a workout that morning, I had no idea of what to expect with my body. So, just in case my body hurt or felt tired, I tried to get it over as quickly as possible while being careful to not push too hard. It also helped knowing there was food, wine and a party at the finish line!
Overall, the course was beautiful. There weren’t as many big character displays as other races, but there was more decoration lining the course. It was easy to stay entertained. It’s Disney!
My favorite was the Festival of Lights. The lights were so beautiful and so bright and the Christmas music warmed me up inside.
It looked like this:
I also got to catch up with the lululemon cheer group!
Before I knew it, the finish line was near. I sprinted through and was so happy to be done! I got some preventative ice for my knees and began to watch out for my friends.
Hats off to Disney for a super organized, easy finish line. Instead of tables of food where everyone waits in line to grab something, they offered these pre-portioned, super yummy boxes of food. The toffee candy and gluten-free crackers with asiago spread were especially yummy!
Lori and I found each other and put on some layers to head over to Wine and Dine!
First thing: we needed some food! We stopped by Greece where I had Spanakopita and some of Lori’s Griddled Greek Cheese with Pistachios and Honey. It was amazing.
I was so full from eating my box (and some of Lori’s that I actually only ate Spanakopita and had a luscious caramel latte toward the end of the night. I was surprised that there wasn’t a ton of vegetarian options (except for Greece) and that their coffee stands didn’t offer a single milk alternative.
Walking around Epcot after hours was such a treat. Most of the people in there were runners and it felt like one big celebration party!
I’m happy to say we shut the place down and left at 4am. After running a half marathon. It was crazy fun!
Have you ever run a spontaneous race?
I’ve run a ton of last-minute races from 5k to half marathon. My first marathon was a surprise as I only heard about the race and registered a few days before!