Here’s a short review of our trip…
We left Athens at 4AM on Friday morning, the day before the race. We got to Disney World a little before 12PM. We went straight to Disney’s Wide World of Sports for the Expo. You have to go there before 8PM on Friday night to pick up your bib, shoe sensor and race packet. There were literally thousands of people there. It was unbelievable. They actually did a really good job managing that size of crowd. After wondering around a while, we finally found where we were supposed to go first. When we got up there, the lines were about 50 people long. Fortunately, they were divided up by number, and our number had three people in line. It was awesome. We walked right up and got our packet within 5 minutes.
From there, we went over to Disney’s Hollywood Studios to eat at one of our favorite restaurants on property, Mama Melrose’s. We had a little bit of time before our 5PM reservation, so we rode the Tower of Terror, Rockin’ Roller Coaster and saw the Beauty and the Beast stage show. We showed up at 4:30PM for our reservation, and they sat us right away. As always, the food was great. We filled up on carbs with breads and pastas and and our way back to the condo we were renting off property. Since we got up at 4AM, we were tired and were actually in bed and asleep by 8PM (with a little help from some NyQuil).
The three alarms I set all went off at 3AM. Since we got to bed so early, we got a full night’s sleep and felt pretty good. We got up, and made it to the Epcot parking lot a little after 4AM. Again, we could not believe the amount of people running this thing. I’ve heard that 16,000 people where participating. Then the waiting began. They herded us from location to location until the 6AM start time. All in all it was about 2 miles worth of walking just to get to the start line. At 6 AM, the first set of fireworks went off and wave 1 started the race. We were in wave 3, so our fireworks went off at 6:30AM, and we crossed the start line a little after that.
Like I wrote in the previous post, it was very crowded. We definitely had to run slower than we wanted to because of the amount of people and all the walkers. I found out later that when you register for the race, the time you say you think you will finish in in the wave they put you in. When I registered, I wasn’t running at all, so I just put 3 hrs. This put us with all the walkers. I won’t do that again.
I felt really good after the race. We ran at a slow pace, and it was fun running around Disney World. Jackie felt OK, but her knees were really bothering her. We went back to the condo, and she rested the rest of the day. I went back to the parks and just took it all in that afternoon. For the rest of the trip, we just slept in and enjoyed walking around the parks, seeing attractions and eating together. It was a really nice trip without the boys. We concluded that Disney World is funner with kids, but it is much more relaxing without them.
There were 2 highlights of our time together after the marathon. On Sunday night, we ate dinner at the Kona Cafe at The Polynesian Resort. The dinner was very good, and aftewards, we walked out on their beach and watched the Wishes fireworks show over the castle at the Magic Kingdom. They even pipe in the audio there in the beach it was very cool. The second highlight of our trip was Tuesday night. We went to Epcot and ate dinner at Le Cellier Steakhouse. It is by far our favorite restaurant on property. They have an awesome cheddar cheese soup, the steaks are great, and they have a smores dessert that we both love. After the meal, we walked right out the door and watched Illuminations together over World Showcase. It was a great end to our trip.
On Wednesday, we headed home. I’m not sure if I’m going to run another race at Disney World, but I definitely want to run a full marathon soon. I’m going to do some research and see if there’s a good one close that I can run.