Friday, January 6, 2017

WDW Marathon Weekend Remembered (Friday Five Edition)

This weekend is the WDW Marathon Weekend.  Two years ago I ran my first marathon there.  Then last year I ran Dopey.  Here are some memories from the Dopey Challenge Last year.

1. Four races in four days is really hard.  It is true when people say that getting up early four mornings in a row (6 if you have early flights getting there and going home).  If you put in the training necessary, the mileage is not too bad, but missing out on the parks so that you can stay off your feet and going to bed super early is the hard part.

2. I signed up for the Runner's World VIP package.  This included the breakfast after the 5k and 10k, Race Retreat for the half and full, Pasta Party the night of the 5k, and a special shorter walk to the start line of the half and full.  I was too tired to take full advantage of everything.  The Pasta Party was fun, with great characters to take pictures with, but I was too tired to stay too long.  And I didn't even make it to the Race Retreat after the half and full as all I wanted to do was get back to my hotel.  Both the breakfasts and Race Retreats had some interesting character photo ops.  And the shorter walk to the start line was fun.  We ended up on a path in the woods.  Getting through the crowds and path in the woods was a bit tricky, so they had us all hold onto a rope.  It was like we were back in kindergarten holding hands so we don't get lost.

At the 5k Breakfast.  I have no clue who they are.
At the Pasta in the Park with Lotso from Toy Story 3.
At the 10k Breakfast.  Again, no clue.
Finally someone I knew at the Race Retreat before the Half.
3. The 10k was rainy through the race.  Most characters were not out to get photos with.  But I decided to stay after the race, even though it was raining.  I knew if I waited it out I would be able to get pictures with Minnie Mouse and Dopey with short lines.  Everyone left right after the race and after about 20 minutes of waiting in the drizzle, the rain let up and I got the photos with almost no line.

Minnie and me.

Love this picture.

4. My right calf started to hurt the night before the marathon.  I was very nervous about the marathon.  I did make it through, with stops at ever medical tent for more bio-freeze.  It was a very slow marathon but it was finished.

5. I did ride Everest.  It's a perfect adrenaline rush half way through the race.

Ready for Everest to start.


People often ask me if I would do the Dopey Challenge again.  I never will say never, but I don't see me doing it again.  I really wish I had a friend to run with through the races, as doing all races by myself was hard.  But I'm really glad that I was able to do the challenge.  I love telling people how crazy I am by doing the challenge.

Have you done the Dopey Challenge?  Have you ever done any of the extras, like Race Retreat or Pasta in the Park?  What is your favorite character to get a photo with?

I'm linking up with Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy for Friday Five 2.0


  1. You've got some great memories from that challenge! I love all the photos. That's pretty cool you were able to ride a roller coaster during the race :)

    1. The roller coaster was my favorite part of the whole race.

  2. I did the race retreat at my first Disney half. The pre-race was great, because I could sit down, have a private area for the bathroom, and just try to chill. Afterwards was OK, but that's on me. I can't eat much right after a race, but I did try to enjoy the hot food.

    1. Yeah, it was nice to sit and compose myself before the race. But I'm with you that I can't eat after a half/marathon.

  3. Great pics! The bears in the first pic look like the ones from the bear Jimbare show in Magic Kingdom. And the other one I think is bear rabbit and friends I've seen from the Splash mountain ride. But never seen any of these characters at the parks for photo opportunities.

    1. Well then they are rare pictures and I'm glad I got them even though I don't know who they are. :)

  4. Hold on -- you rode a ride in the middle of the race?! That's pretty awesome. Lol!

    1. Oh yeah, since the Animal Kingdom and Epcot are open. There was one guy I talked to before the marathon who had planned on riding as many as he could. I always wondered if he was able to do all he planned.