06 February 2008

2008 Goofy Challenge Race Report

Alright, I think I have a good hour to work on some sort of RR, so here goes. My family and I arrived in Orlando on Wednesday and stayed in a gorgeous house 10 min from the parks. It had a pool, hot tub, grill, 2 master bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and was awesome. The group consisted of me, my parents, my brother, his wife, my nephew John, my niece Kate, my sister, my nephews Justin and Jacob . On Thursday, we all went to Animal Kingdom and it was a hit. My nephews loved the safari and all of the animals and stuff. My dad, SIL, brother and I went on the Everest roller coaster which was truly awesome! I'm definitely going to do that one again.

On Friday morning, I woke up at 5am and went with my mom back to Animal Kingdom for the 5K. My mom was just there to start waking up early. There were corrals for 7 and under, 7-9, 9-11, 11-13, 13-15 min mile pace. I got in the 9-11 at the front thinking I would be in the right place. I was planning on running under 30 minutes. If you haven't run at Disney, you need to know that people dress up for the races. I had my Minnie ears on, but next to me were 3 pink flamingos. Three guys had put flamingo hats, pink shirts, pink shorts, and giant pink tutus. It was hysterical! The race started and there were TONS of walkers up front. I was furious! I have absolutely no problem with walkers and I'm so glad that there are walker friendly races. I do, however, have a problem with walkers being in the 7-9 min mile pace corral. My first mile was 10:36 and it was because I spent so much time walking behind these packs of walkers in the front of the crowd. I finally got around them and mile 2 (which was actually in Animal Kingdom) was 9:3? and I was feeling good. Mile 3 was past Everest and then back out into the parking lot and was also 9:3?. I finished in 30:30, which was totally fine. The medal was cool. It's plastic, square, and has Mickey in safari clothes on it. It says something about the Family Safari 5K run. I will definitely do it again.

On Saturday morning, my mom and I woke up at 3:15am and left for Epcot to be at the start at 4am. My brother and dad volunteered at one of the water stops, so they left for Magic Kingdom at about the same time. We got to the start and checked in my gear bag and then started standing in line for the porta-johns. We then started the 1 mile walk to the start. The weather was gorgeous and I was looking forward to racing. We were in wave 3 and since I was running with my mom we were in Corral F which was almost to the back. For whatever reason (lack of confidence I think) she put an expected finishing time of 3 hours, so we were further back than we should have been. We crossed the start at around 6:30am and were off. You run around the roads for the first 3 miles and then between mile 4 and 5 you head into Magic Kingdom. We passed my dad and brother at their water stop and of course, my dad through water on me (he thinks he's funny). We ran through the castle which is always cool and then headed off to the roads again and then around mile 12 we were back in Epcot. The finish is at one of the Epcot parking lots. We finished in 2:37 and my mom's goal was under 2:45, so we beat that. The flamingos were running again and there was also several princesses, Mr. Incredible, lots of Goofys, Minnie and Mickey, Donald Duck, pirates, etc. The medal was a Donald Duck medal and looks like last year's except for the year had changed.

I forgot to mention that on Friday, my 2 nephews raced in the kids races and got some really cool medals with Mickey on them. The races were held at Wide World of Sports and my dad ran with Justin and my brother ran with John. I think they did the 100 yard dash. They also had a diaper dash, but Kate and Jacob didn't sign up.

On Sunday morning, my mom and I woke up at 3:15am again, along with my dad who volunteered at mile 16. My mom and I headed off to Epcot to be at the start by 4am and my dad drove to Magic Kingdom. We got to the start, checked in our gear bags and I ran into all of my Team in Training friends. I've been working with TNT for the past few years and was actually a mentor for this team, so it was cool to see all of them there. My mom and I stood in the porta-potty lines again and then walked off to the start, where we were in the very last corral. We crossed the start at about 6:10am and then headed off on the course. Corrals ABC go one way and DEFGH go a different way and at about mile 3 they meet up in Epcot. My mom and I stopped at the portapotty around mile 2 and had to wait in line for 10+ minutes for a really carppy porta potty, which was frustrating, because about 150 yds down the road was a whole row of porta potties. Anyways, we ran through Epcot in the dark and they had it all lit up and it was gorgeous. Then we headed off to Magic Kingdom. We ran through the castle between miles 10-11. Miles 12-16 were long because you're between parks, but there were alot of people out on the golf courses cheering us on, which was awesome! We also ran into my dad at mile 16. Miles 16-18 are through Animal Kingdom, which I had totally forgotten from last year. (Yes, I did the Goofy challenge last year.) I told my mom to draw on the energy because she was starting to struggle.

Miles 18-22 were really tough because the sun came out and I was dripping. I wore a running skirt and singlet and I was soaked clear through. I actually made a note to self to skip the running skirt on hot and humid days because it was so heavy with sweat that I had to find a safety pin to hold it up. I didn't want to lose my pants on the course. Miles 22-24 are through MGM which is fun. We saw lots of characters (Woody, Buzz Lightyear, BullsEye, etc) and the crowds were awesome. It's also nice to know that you're almost done. They did hand out candy bars at mile 23, but I didn't take one. The thought of trying to eat a Butterfinger while running didn't really work for me. Miles 24-25 are along the water and were awesome. My mom started to struggle at this point, but the crowds kept her going. Mile 25-26 are through Epcot and it was cool to see it during the day time. We finished at 6:02 and my mom was bummed because she was hoping to be under 6. If we wouldn't have stopped at the portapotties we would have been good, but oh well. We picked up our 15th anniversary Mickey marathon medal which was SWEET. It's huge and is a black Mickey head with some stuff on it (I think Mickey Mouse) and a black and gold XV hanging from the bottom of it. Then, we headed to the Goofy tent to pick up the Goofy medal which rocks! It's different than last years and is actually a gold Goofy head with the year hanging from the bottom of it. I took Gu every 4 miles which seemed to work for me. I had a couple of oranges around mile 21. I kept my sponge from mile 22 through the rest of the race which helped with heat. I learned to not wear a running skirt when its really humid because they're too heavy. (It was even tech fabric.) Oh, and I signed up to do all of this again next year! :)

Yep, you read that right. I'm headed back to Disney World for another Goofy challenge in January 09. I love the races. I love the courses. I love the parks. There are tons of characters along the course that you can stop and take your picture with. I saw -Mary Poppins and Bert -Rafiki (I forgot to mention that they bring animals out on the course at Animal Kingdom) -Timon -Woody, Jessie, BullsEye, Buzz Lightyear, the little green aliens -The Disney Villains -The princesses -Tarzan and Jane -Ariel and Prince Eric -Winnie the Pooh and Tigger -Alice, Tweedle Dee and Dum etc. So, if anyone would like to join me, I'll be there. I think my mom is just going to do the 1/2 marathon, but she did have a good time and Sunday was only her 2nd mary ever. I hope you all enjoyed reading this! AJ

Here are some links to check out the photos!


Adrianne said...

Hi AJ! I'm so glad you started a blog. (I keep meaning to do the same). My heck girl! You're keepin' busy. Wow. It sounds like so much fun. I'm impressed with how much energy you have. I hope you and your family are well! I'll keep your schedule in mind and hopefully one of these days we'll be able to see you run!