Time to kick off the Goofy Challenge race reports!
After Thursday’s 5K and a rest day on Friday I was itching to get the Goofy Challenge started. It looked like we were in for some cool temperatures on Saturday so I ran off to Target to pick up something warm to wear in the corrals that I wouldn’t mind throwing away. I managed to find a fleece robe on the clearance rack that fit the bill.
I also picked up some cheap throw away gloves from Target but in hindsight I wish I would have looked for some warm pants I could have worn in addition to the robe. I planned to dress as Winnie the Pooh for the race but I wasn’t anticipating how cold it was going to be when I packed. Luckily the one long sleeve tech shirt I brought with me worked with my costume plans! I wore my fresh green Oiselle Distance shorts, long sleeve Flyte (similar), red Scantron tank and a yellow Sparkle Skirt and visor. It wasn’t an overly complicated or elaborate costume but it was very comfortable to run in!
I wanted to stay as relaxed as possible before the race, so that meant arriving at the start early. We were staying off property so we drove to the start, leaving at 3:45 am.
The drive to EPCOT was really fast (yay for no traffic issues). I went through bag check right away, took advantage of the non-existant lines for the porta potties, then started my walk to the corrals. I munched on my peanut butter and jam sandwich along the way. When I got to my corral it was fairly empty so I made my way right up to the front, sat down on a plastic bag and just hung out and waited. Finally at 5:30, with a countdown from Donald Duck and some fireworks the race was underway!
Walt Disney World Half Marathon Race Report
I was back in corral I (they went all the way to P), but the corrals were being sent off on fairly frequent intervals. I hung on to my robe until the last possible minute and then crossed the start line at 6:00. My goal for the half marathon was to run this one as easily as possible so I planned to settle into my usual long run pace and hold it there. I was worried with the cold temperatures that I’d wind up taking off like a rocket but I diligently watched my Garmin to make sure I was staying on track. Everything was going according to plan!
I hit the 5K timing mat at 35:29 (an 11:26/mi pace). The crowds at the Transportation and Ticket Center just before mile 4 were exhilarating. The distance was ticking off and the next thing I knew I was running into the Magic Kingdom. Neil and my dad were waiting near the entrance there and I gave them a big smile and wave. I then tried to take in as much as possible as I ran down Main Street…the crowds cheering, the cowbells ringing and the beautifully lit up castle just ahead.
I was hoping maybe Winnie the Pooh may be out for pictures in Fantasyland but I was out of luck. He was the one and only character I would have made a stop for. Normally I love to stop for character photos as much as possible, but all of the lines were really long. I didn’t want to spend a lot of time waiting for photos and then perhaps running faster than I should have afterward to make up time. I figured an evenly paced run was in my best interests for today.
I did pull off to the side for a quick photo with the castle in the background though!
After a quick jaunt through Frontierland we were out of the park and on the backroads making our way to EPCOT. I crossed the 10K timing mat at 1:10:58 (still at an 11:26/mi pace). The sun was coming up but the temperatures were still pretty cool. I was definitely happy with my decision to add in the long sleeve shirt for today’s race!
The miles between the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT were fairly uneventful. I just tried to keep running steadily, taking my scheduled walk breaks and keeping on top of my nutrition and hydration. I took my gels anywhere between 40 and 50 minutes apart depending on where the aid stations were and I grabbed at least one cup of blue Powerade at every aid station. I crossed the 15K timing mat at 1:47:08 (an 11:30/mi pace).
Once I passed the 10 mile marker I was keen to get this race over and done with and I sped up a wee bit, just enough that Neil missed me at the entrance to EPCOT. Oops!
I was through EPCOT in no time, making my way past the gospel choir and on to the finish line.
I got a high four from Mickey Mouse as I ran across the finish!
All done in 2:28:52 (an 11:22/mi pace)! This was my fastest half marathon at Disney World. I felt like I had raced smart and stuck to my plan (even if I did speed up a bit in my final few miles).
I got my medal, Powerade, bottle of water and snack box. I was hoping they would be giving out heat sheets at the finish but I didn’t spot any. Instead I made my way straight through checked bag pick up, pulled on my hoodie and immediately started drinking some chocolate milk. I had checked a small insulated sandwich bag with some ice packs, a peanut butter sandwich and a chocolate milk so that I could begin refuelling right away.
Best idea ever!
Up next, my marathon race report! If you want to catch up with the rest of my posts from the WDW Marathon weekend:
- Net Time: 2:28:52
- Overall Place: 7,396 of 22,083
- Gender Place: 2,912 of 12,379
- Age Division Place: 513 of 2,027