I don’t know about you, but when it come time to keep up the miles with no race in the near future, it can be hard for me to find the motivation sometimes. So I decided to put together a little list of my favorite Disney movie quotes that I sometimes use for running mantras:
“I’m gonna wreck it!”- Wreck It Ralph
“I can go the distance…”- Hercules
“Just keep swimming…”- Dory
“Today is a good day to try.”- Hunchback of Notre Dame
“I know that the night must end, and that the sun will rise.”- Lion King (Broadway)
“If your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme.”- Jiminy Cricket
“I’m a shooting star, I’ve come so far…”- Jasmine
“Dig a little deeper.”- Winnie the Pooh
“You just need to believe in yourself!”- Rex
“All it takes is faith and trust…”- Peter Pan
“To infinity and beyond!”- Buzz Lightyear
“It’s kinda fun to do the impossible.”- Walt Disney
“The very things that hold you down are going to lift you up.” - Timothy Mouse
“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”- Walt Disney
“Boom, baby!”- Kuzco
“Move it around!”- Lion, Bedknobs & Broomsticks
“There must be more than this provincial life…” -Belle
“Swift as the coursing rain, with all the force of a great typhoon…”- Soldiers, Mulan
“Let’s go kick some honey buns!”- Mushu
“Go, live your dream.”- Hook Hand, Tangled
“Keep moving forward.”- Walt Disney (Thanks, Krissy Murphy!)
“Speed. I am Speed.”- Lightning McQueen (Thanks, Chris Talley!)
Are there any good ones that I may have missed?
My Newest Gadget to Make Running Magical -
I had the pleasure of reading this article on Forbes recently, and was completely enthralled with the kickstarter story of Cheryl Kellond & Sylvia Marino. I mean, this is the way businesses should be: women who want to change things for the better and finding the support from the people. The story behind BIA-Sport is truly a magical one, and I found myself completely caught up.
After careful consideration for about a month, I finally decided that I wanted to be apart of the magic and took the plunge to invest in my pre-order. I’m *so* excited to get my new BIA Sport in August! After running the Princess Half with my iPhone and nearly losing all my pictures and data when the battery almost died, it will be nice to have all the flexibility that the BIA offers. If my husband has his way with all his triathalon traning, I’ll even be testing the waterproof feature, although I much prefer land sports to swimming.
Race day! What started out on a whim as a girls trip while I still had my Annual Pass ended up being a Pal Mickey first: a Pal Mickey Adventure along the Princess Half-Marathon race course! He was so excited to be able to come along that he even busted out the tutu to go along with some of the other guys dressed up on the course.
Can you guess which princess we decided to dress up as? ;)
After waking at the wee hour of 2:30am to start primping and dressing, Pal Mickey Princess and I, along with my sister Katie (going as Ariel), made our way from our hotel room at All-Star Sports out to the line for the busses around 3:30am— and the line was already wrapped along the side, around the surf pool, and heading back toward the Hoops Hotel buildings. Thankfully the line moved relatively quickly for us, and the line gave us a chance to eat the contents of our Runner’s Boxes. Pal Mickey Tip: If you are staying at a Disney resort for a runDisney event, check in the food service areas to see if they are offering Runner’s Boxes the night before the race. Each box contained a bagel, peanut butter, granola bar, small bottle of water and a banana for $7. This was the first time I had ever seen them in my four half-marathons with Disney and it was very convenient. (And cheaper than buying each thing individually!)
Princesses Belle and Ariel reporting for race day!
We finished the contents of our boxes just in time to get on one of the busses and head to Epcot along with thousands of our other closest princess friends….
There were a few other members of the royal family who would be joining us on our journey.
The ride from All-Star Sports to Epcot took a little longer than we had hoped, and we ended up arriving in the runner’s area of the Epcot parking lot around 4:30am. Now for those who have never run an endurance event at Walt Disney World, you are supposed to be in your race corral at the starting line by 5:00am, so we quickly took care of a few personal business items and started the walk to the corrals. I happen to refer to this trek affectionally as the Cattle Crawl, because for the mile and a half or so you have to walk from the Epcot parking lot to the starting corrals, everyone is very tightly packed together and moves relatively slowly. Quite frankly, we all look a bit like we are being herded to greener pastures. Maybe if Billy Crystal and Jack Palance were on horses circling us as we went it would be a bit more entertaining (City Slickers, anyone?), but what was entertaining along the way was taking the chance to look around and see everyone’s great costumes! Some of the attention to detail that people put into their costumes is just amazing— everyone looked so great!
Cattle Crawl-ing our way out to the starting corrals…
After the Cattle Crawl, we finally made it to our corral…
We stretched out a little as we went, and soon enough, we were on our way.
I love how they shoot off fireworks for us at the start!
And we were off! The weather was quite humid, but at least starting at the crack of dawn has it’s benefits when it comes to shade. We made it to mile 1 in no time at all, and we continued on our way up World Drive, parallel to the monorail, toward the Magic Kingdom.
Now on and off through the Cattle Crawl and at the beginning of the race, we happened upon an obstacle to our race experience: It seemed as though Mom would not be able to get up to the Magic Kingdom to see us run through. When my Mom headed out to the busses at 5:30, she was met by a small group of people who also realized at that very moment that there was no bus service from 5:00am-7:00am. When they tried to call for a taxi, the driver said he wouldn’t be able to get around due to the race road closures. We thought for sure we were out of luck, and Mom had just resolved to meet us at Epcot at the finish line.
Bummed, but putting on my princess face at Mile 2. Pal Mickey Tip: If you have anyone coming as a spectator to watch on race day, be sure to thoroughly read all the transportation times and closures so everyone is aware and will know how to get to where they need to go in order to see the race! For morning half-marathons, there is NO bus transportation from 5:00am-7:00am!
This was a HUGE deal for Katie and I, as my Mom has become an integral part of our race trips. Ever since we got our Coast to Coast medal (for running a race in WDW and Disneyland in a calendar year) last September during the Disneyland Half, Mom has come on our trips, cheered us on, and been an important part of our team. My Mom doesn’t want or need much, but one of the highest priority items on her list for this trip was to get pictures with us with Cinderella’s Castle in the background that would match up with the pictures we got of us with Sleeping Beauty’s Castle in Disneyland. The thought of her coming all this way and supporting us, and then not getting the one simple thing she wanted and came out all this way for was just completely deflating.
As I was getting phone calls from Mom throughout the first portion of the race updating us on the situation, we were getting more and more depressed. We cheered up a little bit as we approached the Magic Kingdom, but it was bittersweet knowing that she wouldn’t be there.
There it is! But Mom isn’t there.
It made for a very somber first four miles or so.
Not even photobombing the villians pictures was helping to cheer me, Pal Mickey, or Katie up.
But… just then… as we were approaching the Transportation and Ticket Center… we got a call. Mom was THERE! You want to hear a magical story, well do I have one for you! :)
After the taxi idea had fallen through, Mom asked the folks at All-Star Sports when the first resort bus (not event transportation bus) would come to take people to the parks for the day. They informed her that they usually start at 7:00am, but sometimes will start around 6:45am. It was a long shot given when our corral started that we could meet at the Magic Kingdom, but if we took our time with enough pictures along the way, it could be possible. She decided to head out to the resort bus waiting area and see what may come of it, although it was a long shot.
Like Prince Charming on his white horse, all of a sudden a bus labeled “Magic Kingdom” came charging in— at 6:15am! Mom ran over and the bus driver told her that she could take her up to the Transportation and Ticket Center, but not all the way to the park due to the road closures. Mom hopped on board (she was the only passenger!) and that wonderfully magical bus driver drove my Mom up to the Transportation and Ticket Center just in time for Mom to catch a monorail and make it to the Magic Kingdom before us!
These princesses were positively beaming by Mile 4, thanks to the efforts of one awesome bus driver!
When I got the call that she was going to make it, Katie and I had renewed energy— we were doing this not just for us, but for Mom too! I let out a very un-princess like whoop and we used the extra pep in our step to get to see Mom. Of course, we had to stop for some pictures… but just to make sure that Mom got there before us. ;)
Awesome Taiko drumming group at the Transportation and Ticket Center!
YAHOO! We were on our way to the Magic Kingdom AND Mom was able to make it! Dreams really do come true, even when things seem impossible!
Very cool character puppets on the way from the Transportation and Ticket Center toward the Magic Kingdom!
Almost there! Gotta keep going!
Now if you have never run a race at Walt Disney World before, I simply can not describe the feeling of running into the Magic Kingdom. The sun just starting to rise, the lights of Main Street on, the castle twinkling, all the people cheering… it chokes me up every time. There’s a reason these runDisney races have grown exponentially in size so quickly, and the magic factor is a huge part of it. With Mom being able to make it there in spite of it all made the whole thing even more emotional. Getting teary-eyed and panning the crowds, Pal Mickey, Katie, and I made our way up Main Street toward Cinderella’s Castle.
Dreams really do come true!
After some teary but joyful hugs, we got back on course and headed into Tomorrowland, admired all the awesome neon lighting (one of my personal favorite details), and back around into Fantasyland. Of course, we had to stop and get this picture:
Three Belles out for a morning photo op!
After waiting in line for the Belle photo, we headed back through Cinderella’s Castle and into Frontierland for Mile 6…
I *never* get tired of that castle!
…And then back out the side of the Magic Kingdom to make our way back out toward World Drive.
For me, the endurance part of this course is always Mile 6.5 up to about Mile 10. I always find I have to pull up on my mental training the most along this stretch. That isn’t to say there aren’t things to look at and do, but I always tend to experience this little crash back to reality after the build up leading to the Magic Kingdom. So I cranked up my music, started using my mantra (“I’m gonna wreck it!” :) ) and worked to hunker down into a rhythm for the next stretch.
Mile 7, right around the Grand Floridian and Polynesian Resorts
Speaking of endurance, it was around this time that Katie turned to me and told me she was really going to need some encouragement for the rest of the race, as she was experiencing some pain in her feet. So we pushed on, using a combination of running and walking to “Keep Moving Forward”. (Thank YOU Walt, for your inspiration and vision in more ways than one.)
Mile 8, “Just Keep Swimming”
Slowly but surely, we kept working our way back down World Drive and towards Epcot. Mom had called me to let me know she was right around the Mile 13 marker so we would know to look for her, and we pushed on. Katie’s pain was starting to become more and more severe, but we worked to keep things slow and steady.
Gee, can you tell there was a water stop near by? Or maybe that’s just “runner’s confetti”? ;)
There was a great photo op right in this stretch of World Drive that had all the Heros from the different movies featuring princesses that I wished I had the patience try and snap, but the lines were just too long and I certainly didn’t want to stop and have Katie cramp up when she was already experiencing pain, so we enjoyed the view and made our way to Mile 10.
The infamous on-ramp portion of the daytime Half-Marathon course.
We took it easy going up the ramp and was greeted by one of the green army men from Toy Story at the top. If I had the nerve, I would’ve stopped to do some push-ups— one of my favorite memories from doing the WDW Half-Marathon back in January, but at this point it was about survival and just gaining that extra ground as much as we could. (As well as trying to conserve some phone battery!) Sure enough, we eventually made it to Mile 11, with Epcot in our sights!
Two miles to go!
Right after the Mile 11 marker was an awesome Mulan display and a short line, so we put on our princess smiles and posed for a great picture…
Definitely need to try for a Mulan costume sometime… under-rated princess AND with a hair style that is off the face & neck!
Grinning and bearing it, we made it to Mile 12. Only one more to go! At this point, all Katie and I were talking about was food, ice for our feet, and a hot shower after running in this crazy humidity. We did also exchange thanks for the fact that it was overcast for the whole race though- I can’t even imagine how tough it could’ve been if it were sunny and that humid!
Epcot was just a short jog away! Epcot is definitely one of my favorite parks, but I will be the first to admit that when hitting it at this point in the race, I am usually ready to just get through it as quickly as I can in order to get to the finish line. As anxious as I am though, I always have to stop and admire Spaceship Earth…
Almost there, and just look at that view!
Soon enough, we wound our way back through Futureworld and out to the Hallelujah Gospel Chorus that greets you as you exit Epcot and head out to the parking lot where Mile 13 awaits.
After finding Mom along the railing and waving for the video camera, we summoned the last bit of physical strength we at left, and crossed the finish line! We finally made it! It was definitely no small feat, (for our feet! LOL… too much? Too much.) and we were rewarded with some great bling to go along with our magical experience…
You may not be able to see, but Pal Mickey has a little medal of his own that was a gift from Kristin and our other Pal Mickey friend! Please note: this picture was taken post-shower/icing session for your viewing courtesy.
After freshening up, we put on our calf compression sleeves and proceeded to eat a ton of food: Mickey waffles w/strawberries, bacon, and Chicken Penne Alfredo— YUM! (And yes, two entrees. No, I’m not ashamed. Definitely a proud member of the facebook group, I Run Disney So I Can Eat Disney.) We ate until our stomachs and hearts were content and then made our way via Magical Express back to the reality that is the Orlando International Airport.
Pal Mickey Tip: If you are running a race, and especially if you have to travel the same day after wards, be sure to have some compression socks or calf sleeves. They DEFINITELY helped make the flight home a less sore, more enjoyable trip. I even wore them for a few days after the race to help my legs get back into the K-8 Music Teacher routine.
LOVE that bling! Definitely wore it proudly throughout the airport and on the plane.
What an unbelievable race experience!! For us, this race was quite a roller-coaster of emotion and strength— certainly not the smoothest or calmest of race experiences. In some ways though, I think this race experience was even more magical because of those hardships and obstacles. We showed our strength, Disney provided a healthy amount of magic, and in the end, we are stronger and happier because of it.
Here’s to you and your Happily Ever After— I am confident that ours will include more runDisney race experiences!
~Lauren (@TIx2GR) & Pal Mickey (@PalMickeyTips)
CarsLand at night- so awesome, especially when you eat at Flo’s V8 cafe.
Loved King Triton’s Carousel after revving through CarsLand @DCAToday