Saturday, February 24, 2018

Grandma's First 5k

I promise no rants ahead!😁

Yesterday was the Disney Princess 5k,  and I'm still on a "walker's high." I can walk a gazillion miles, but where other people have knee cartilage, I have crushed potato chips.  I have to stick to low impact.  I've never been able to run so I have never paid a lot of attention to races.  My daughter got back into running a couple of years ago, and did this race last year.  After she told me I absolutely could do it, I signed up with her to do it this year.  (She's also doing the half marathon on Sunday, because she is a Real Runner.)

The race started at 5:30 a.m., so I had to pick my daughter up at 3:30 a.m. to get there, park, and make our way to the starting point in the Epcot parking lot. It was already crowded with runners.  Thousands of runners, or rather, a few thousand runners and a herd of my fellow walkers. 15,000 people registered for the race.  There were 6 corrals, grouped by time, and those corrals were turned loose in groups of 4 or 5, so it wasn't a mad stampede.  This is not the kind of race where you go for a personal record, because if you didn't start in the front of corral A, it's not possible to maintain any sort of speed in the mob.  (We were in the middle of the pack in C.)

While the winners do get the glory, most of the participants are there for fun, and it is hugely fun. Some people wear amazing costumes, others are just funny, like the tall, balding man around my age who was dressed as Snow White, while his daughters were dwarfs.  The winner of the race was a guy they'd interviewed on the stage (jumbo screens and music and and a coffee truck and entertainment keep you busy while waiting to start) who was in full Rapunzel regalia, including the long braid wig, and a few days of facial stubble.  He was there to "get in touch with his inner princess," and the crowd loved him, it's cool that he won.  (His winning photo shows that his princess gown was slit up the front and he had some serious, muscular runner's legs underneath.)

It is a timed race, and as you pass each mile marker a digital display shows your time, but I can't even remember what ours was by the end.  After a while, dodging around the people who were walking at window shopping speed got too frustrating and we slowed down, took a few pictures, and made a restroom stop after mile 2.  As I said, not a place to worry about your speed. 😆

I hadn't walked much since signing up for this race and had been mildly concerned that I would be one of the slower participants, until I got to the race Expo Thursday evening to pick up my race bib and shirt.  The Expo is at the huge Wide World of Sports complex, which I'd never visited.  As I was walking in I saw people of all ages and shapes picking up their race bibs, including a few who appeared winded from walking in from the parking lot.

Don't get my daughter started on people who lie their asses off about their running time. This race doesn't require proof of time, so if you ever want to do it, just do what everyone does - make up a number.  I passed a number of groups of women around my age who appeared exhausted by walking from the parking lot to pick up their race bibs, and imagined their conversation:

"So we have to put how fast we go on the registration. How long do you think it takes us to walk a mile?

"Oh, I don't know, maybe 10 minutes?"

"Okay, we'll say 10 minutes."

Yeah, there's a whole lotta that going on.

I don't have a ton of pictures because did I mention it was 5:30 in the morning? Yeah, dark. Beautiful, but dark.

The Epcot Flower and Garden Festival is getting underway, so there were tons of great topiaries to admire (in the dark).

Obligatory selfie at the halfway mark.

I could get addicted to runDisney.  The event was so well organized, tons of staff,  and everyone, the participants and the volunteers from Children's Miracle Network were just so happy and nice!  Definitely worth doing if you ever get the chance. I'm looking forward to the Wine and Dine in November.

I promised there would be no rants in this update, but I'll leave you with this happy thought:


wednesday said...

Glad you enjoyed the 5K! They can be really fun if they are well organized, and the crowd is there in that spirit.

I did one with my mom a few years back. I knew there was a camera taking photos as you crossed the finish line, and I made her run the last 100 feet for the photo. She's got this huge grin on her face, but is listing pretty far to the left.

Catherine said...

Disney has photographers along the course, and I’m glad my daughter warned me to keep a smile on my face throughout. When she did it the first time they caught her while talking to her friend, and the results were not flattering. ��

Anonymous said...

You're always stepping out there into the unknown!

I must steal that Jeopardy board, to post on Facebook. Thank you for the laugh!


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a seriously fun event! Love the Wheel of Fortune meme.