|Our starting line|
|Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, and Ariel|
|Sign for Corral D|
Disney, by far, had the best "on your mark, get set, go", each and every corral got a magically firework send off by the Fairy Godmother! Before we knew it we were off (5:58am). This was one of the several times during the race that I told myself, to slow down and enjoy the moment, something I wish I had done on my wedding day. The first mile was very slow and congested. It was so slow that the Fairy Godmother actually said "Corral D, I am happy you are having a good time, but get moving". The first 3 miles are kind of a blur to me, good thing I took pictures. I remember a marching band around mile 1, and there were a few tight spaces were there were way too many princesses and not enough road, so we had to walk. It was also still dark out, I never knew I could have so much fun before the sun came up. We got our first glimpse of a character around mile 2, it was none other than Captain Jack Sparrow and the Black Pearl all the way from the Caribbean just for us. The line of Princesses waiting to become Captain Jack's wench was ridiculous, so I snapped a picture as I was running past. After the Black Pearl there was another crazy long line.
|The Black Pearl|
much to see everywhere, it really kept our minds off the fact that we were running. It was the longest it ever took me to complete a 5k, but it went by the fastest! Still inside the Magic Kingdom parking lot we came across some of Disney's Villains. I am not a huge Villain fan, but this was a must stop for me, since I was dressed as Cinderella and Cinderella's stepmother and stepsisters were there. This was one of the longer lines that we actually waited in, it was moving fast and we felt like we had plenty of time. While in line, my mom noticed someone ran by with a Corral H bib on, which kind of made us all nervous. So, we knew when we left the Villains we needed to pick up our pace some.
Mile 5 was right around the corner, and somewhere between mile 5 and mile 6 is where we enter the Magic Kingdom!
|My favorite Mile marker|
As we were approaching the castle we could hear the trumpets welcoming us into the castle. Another really exciting moment, one that I had been imagining for the past year. Once inside the castle, there wasn't any running! The inside of the castle was the same type of crowd you encounter leaving a concert or sporting event. Nevertheless, it was still magical to me. After leaving the castle there were professioanl photographers taking pictures of us running with the castle behind us, and even a stop out in front of the castle. If you would like to see those pictures you can go to Marathonfoto.com and type in Parent or Kelp in the last name and select Disney Princess Half Marathon. Sindi has more photos in her folder than I do, because her bib # was easier to read than mine. I have to search 66,441 pictures to find the rest of mine.
We left the castle and ran toward Frontierland to head out of the Magic Kingdom through backstage. Backstage we came across Cinderella and Prince Charming and I just had to stop. While waiting in line the "clock struck midnight" for Cinderella and Princess Aurora took her place. We decided to wait since we hadn't seen any princesses yet. While we were waiting we saw what seemed like a ride grave yard. Just passed Sleeping Beauty we came to our 10k
|Sign declared our Half Way mark|
and read "Girl you are on Fire"
We ran into EPCOT, basically right around the fountain and back under the ball, and out backstage toward the parking lot. We had made it to Mile 13 and only had .1 to go. We could hear all of the noise of the finish line and I felt pretty emotional all over again.
We stopped for one last picture right before the finish line, we had to get our picture with Prince Mickey. After our final character stop, we grabbed hands and crossed the finish line together! What an accomplishment!
After the finish line, we headed to get sprinkled with Pixie Dust, which I think we should have gotten before the race, not after.
It was finally time to receive the BLING we had earned. This is my second medal, but the first one came in the mail after the race, since the Detroit Turkey Trot had run out. Looking back, I am happy that this is the first medal that was ever placed around my neck at a finish line!
After the race, we just wanted to find our family, shower and eat! We didn't really take the time to see everything they was happening at the finish line. That just gives us something to look forward to next time!
Looking at my finish time, you may not think this was a huge accomplishment, since anyone could walk 13.1 miles in 3:56, but the fact that I had the courage to start this journey was the accomplishment. Not many people are motivated to ever make it to a start line, let alone a finish line, and from where I was a year ago, this is a huge accomplishment. I will be running a half marathon in April, to prove to myself, that I can "run" a half marathon. It will be a real mental challenge without all the fireworks and entertainment, but I have learned that I can do anything I put my mind to.
I have been asked a few times, "what next, what is your next goal?" Immediately after the race while waiting in line for the bus, I told Derrick he could sign me up for the WDW full marathon. Not sure I would ever want to do a regular marathon, but I would like to try Disney's version of 26.2.