This was it. The culmination of over a year of training. Okay, so we didn’t train the entire time, but we tried. The morning started before the sun woke up, 3:30 AM. Kenny, Krissy, Kat, Will, Kenny’s mom, Bob and I dragged ourselves out of bed, got dressed, downed some Gatorade and Power Bars and headed to the Epcot parking lot.
For today’s race, it was only Kat, Krissy, Kenny, Bob and I running. I was dreading the run for so many reasons; the main one was that the furthest I’ve ever run was 5 miles. I also was having knee problems and foot problems. Yeah, not very confident with myself but there was no turning back. With one last pee, we headed off to the starting gate. Of course, they weren’t going to start 17,000 people all at once. Instead, they grouped everyone into different waves, based on the time that was put down on the application. When I signed us up, I had just put that we would finish in 3:30, the slowest time possible without being picked up by the paddy wagon, so we were in the last wave. The race officially started at 6:03 with the first wave and we started around 6:25. The first two miles were great; I was pumped with the excitement of running a ½ marathon.
I think after that, it was all a blur. Krissy, Bob and I stayed together until about mile 7 when Bob faded into the distance with each step that we took. I started to falter around mile 10 and Krissy pulled away. In the end, though, we all finished: Kat: 2:06, Kenny 2:08, Krissy: 3:15, me 3:15 and Bob 3:28. Hooray for all of us, we crossed the finish line and we all got our medals! Well, except for Bob who was so slow that they ran out of medals. Fortunately he picked up his the next day.
And then the pain really started. We decamped for the condo, and immediately stiffened up in the van. As we unloaded ourselves, the moaning and groaning could be heard for miles, surely. At least Bob’s moaning and groaning. We got up to the room and hit the showers, then we compared our injuries. My knee had swollen up real big and was very uncomfortable. Bob didn’t have any specific pains, but just an overwhelming feeling of soreness and stiffness in his back, ass, hips, thighs, knees, calves, ankles, feet and toes. And we’re both sunburned. But for all our complaining, I think this event was a success. We all are glad that we did it, even if we’re not ever doing it again.
Highlights of the event:
- Woman stopping at the side of the road to pee. Standing up. She just pulled her shorts to the side and let fly, right in front of the rest of the runners. That was ballsy.
- Snow White running in and out of crowds. She was in full costume. She must have been very warm because I was sweating and I was wearing shorts and a tee shirt.
- Running through Cinderella’s castle while waving at Ariel and the Prince and listening to the trumpets playing.
- Seeing the various characters while running through the Magic Kingdom.
- Hi-fiving Goofy while crossing the finish line.
- Reading various sayings on the backs of shirts.
- Absolute strangers cheering you on.
- The bands and deejays on the side of the route pumping you up with music.
- Having to run after the medic on the bike when you’re injured and having him not see you when you’re waving your arms right in front of him.
- Dropping an empty water cup on the ground right in front of the state trooper and not getting in trouble (“Everyone’s doing it, Officer!”).
- Talking to the various runners/walkers on the road.
- Looking behind you and seeing so many people and realizing that you’re not in a bad position.
- Kenny’s head.