Wednesday Wisdom: How to Run the Disney Princess Half Marathon!

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Hi everyone!  Exactly 2 weeks from now I’ll be on a road trip down to Disney for the Disney Princess Half Marathon!  Ahhhh!  This is the race I’ve been dreaming about doing even before I was a runner.  I heard about girls who ran 13.1 mile through Cinderella’s castle while wearing princess costumes and thought “I wish I could do that!”.  And I’m on my way!  I got my bib number, my corral placement (corral G!), have all the items to start assembling my princess costume, and I’m logging my final long runs!  Here is the results of my long run yesterday, which were done on my treadmill and not in the snow outside:

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How crazy is that!  Getting to double digits has always sounded impossible and I can’t believe I finally got there!  I feel like I actually might be able to do this in 18 days!!!

I’m also learning that Disney Princess is no ordinary race.  You don’t just show up at the expo, get your bib, and then come back the next day and run the race.  Actually, I’m sure a few people do that, but I’m learning that Disney is all about the experience and in order to get the most out of your Disney Princess experience you’re going to need to learn all the insider tips.  Luckily I joined a Facebook group for Disney Princess runners, and many of these girls are veterans of this race and have lots of great advice and information to share with us newbies.  There’s a blog hop going on right now, so after checking out all the amazing ladies who participated I made a list of some of the most helpful posts:

  • Packing for the race:  I have to admit that I have started to think about this crazy important step already!  The good news is that I’ll be driving down to Disney, so I can bring my massive foam roller!  In Healthy Habits We Trust wrote a great post about what to pack for the race.  She even touches on some thing that you’ll need to bring to Disney races that you might not need to bring to other races.  I’ll be checking this post out while I’m making my packing list!
  • The Fit For A Princess Expo:  With 26,000 girls picking up their race packets, you’re going to need some tips for navigating this massive pre-race event.  Fairytales and Fitness wrote an amazingly detailed post (with pics!) on how to attend the expo and get all the things you need.  Because yes, I do need that “I Did It!” shirt!
  • Costumes:  The best part about Disney Princess is that almost everyone dresses up!  Most girls choose to dress up like their favorite princess, which can quickly turn painful if you pick the wrong type of material to use on your costume.  Luckily Suzanne Ran has a great post on how to plan out your costume.  I’m not wearing a tutu, but she has great tips on how to find the perfect one!  And I still need to do a literal test run with my costume so that there is nothing uncomfortable that might keep me from crossing the finish line!
  • Race transportation:  This is one thing that is seriously making me nervous.  This is going to be the biggest race I’ve ever done (and might ever do) and since I’m staying outside of Disney I’m a little worried about traffic on race morning.  Run The Great Wide Somewhere has great tips for navigating the roads/parking lot on race morning!  The thought of being stuck in traffic while my corral leaves without me makes me want to cry!
  • Character photos:  This is another one of those “only in Disney” things – along the race course they have Disney characters and if you feel like taking a hit on your time you can wait in line and take pictures with them!  It’s the only time you’ll ever be dressed like a princess, sweating, and wearing a race bib, so why not take lots of pictures while you’re at it?  Run Walk FASTPASS Repeat has a great list of the character stops in the past few years.  I love her mile by mile breakdown of characters, plus her tips on how long each line was!  I’m probably not going to wait in any character lines unless Ariel is on the course.  Sadly it doesn’t look like it  :(  But it does sound like Mulan’s line is short and let’s face it, she’s the most badass princess of all time  :)
  • REAL bathroom stops:  This is the second post by Run Walk FASTPASS Repeat but it’s so incredibly important!  From what I’ve been hearing, before the race you’ll be drinking water like crazy as you wait in traffic, walk to your corral, and then wait in your corral for up to an hour.  After all that, you’re bound to need to use a bathroom at some point on the course.  The great news is that there are real bathrooms for you to use in Magic Kingdom, and this blog post uses a map to show you exactly where those bathrooms are located!  This is going to be very helpful mid race!
  • Spectators:  This was another nerve-wracking thing for me to think about because my husband will be watching me run this race alone, and I don’t want him to get lost or miss seeing me run down Main Street or the finish line!  Luckily Running Toward My Happy Ending has it all planned out for me!  She even highlighted the pros and cons of each viewing area.
  • Race results:  I had no idea this existed, but Elbow Glitter wrote a post about runner tracking!  My husband can get alerts each time I cross a timing mat so he knows exactly how I’m doing.  So awesome!
  • Pre and post race food:  Let’s be real here:  I run for food.  That’s not the only reason I do it, but it’s definitely a big part of it!  I’m going to need to eat some amazingly yummy stuff after I cross that finish line!  Healthy Wifeys for Lifey took all the hard work out of researching the best places to eat before and after the race!  Her list is great, but it did remind me that you need to have a reservation for a lot of these places.  I may be eating my pasta at home the night before the race!
  • Overall how-to-survive tips for the Disney Princess Half:  Runaway Royalty summed up her survival tips for the training, expo, and actual race.  I love how she kept it real and reminded us that yes, things will get crazy, but we’re in Disney running the race of our dreams!  Calm down and trust your training to get you over the finish line  :)  And make sure to have a blast during the race!

disney-princess-runnerI can’t wait for this to be me!!!!!

Want to read all of the blog posts in the link up?  Check them out here!  And if you’re running Disney Princess, leave me a comment!  I’d love to see who is going to be running with me!

Have you ever run the Disney Princess Half?  Any tips?

25 thoughts on “Wednesday Wisdom: How to Run the Disney Princess Half Marathon!

  1. I know exactly how you feel in terms of the anticipation. In 2008 when I heard about The Disney races and the Goofy Challenge, it was my goal race. I made it there in 2010, and since have kept going back. Enjoy your adventure. You seem to have done your research, and are well prepared. If you are looking for a little added inspiration, I’ve recapped my recent trips to WDW and DL’s Tink on my blog this passed January. You will have a blast. Enjoy the ride.

    • Ooooh I’m going to check that out for sure! I’m very happy they did that blog hop so that I could find all of those posts! The parking/not being able to meet up with my husband after it’s done are the two scariest parts for me! And congrats on doing Goofy!

  2. That blog hop was so helpful! We are also staying off of Disney property so I’ve been working out the logistics of everything!

    You’re going to be awesome! It’s almost time! :)

    • I still can’t believe it!!!!! I registered back in July and thought I was prepared but clearly I was not…thank god for the blog hop! Now I know where to find a bathroom where I can wash my hands!

  3. I have to admit that a Disney/princess half marathon is not my thing, but as a new reader of your blog, I am so excited for you and can’t wait to hear all about your fantastic race. Be confident and know that you will do great. And if you get nervous about finishing the full 13.1 like many first-timers do, know that the adrenalin and excitement will power you through those last few miles!

    • Thank you! I seriously love everything about this comment :) I also am not super hardcore Disney, but as a non-runner there was just something about looking at the pictures of happy Disney Princess runners that made me think “I wonder if I could do that some day…”. I’m not wearing a tutu or a crown – in fact, I’m wearing a fork in my hair if that helps you guess who I’m dressing up as! I decided to dress up because I’ll probably never be able to afford another Disney race so it’s my only chance to run in costume with 26,000 other people. And yes I’m very scared about the 13.1 miles, but I’m going to try for 11 this weekend with a mini taper next weekend (Hal Hidgon says 12 but I feel like I should taper?) and I’m hoping that will be good enough! Apparently Disney is great about entertaining you throughout the race (they have a gospel choir at mile 13!) so I think that will help a lot!

  4. I never have, but thank you thank you for all these links! I am going to check them all out. I won’t be doing Princess Half, but some of them should come in handy for marathon weekend!

    2 more weeks!!!

    • Haha most of them are like “How to find the perfect tutu on etsy” but hopefully some of them can relate to your race. I’m freaking out over here!!!!! I cried when I ran those 10 miles so I know I’ll be sobbing at the finish line!

  5. The Princess half was my first half ever and it was AWESOME. You’ll have a blast! I can’t wait to read all about your experiences. Vic and Brooke will be down there from Scoot a Doot so look for them (I’m sure it will be easy to find them – just listen for the loudest people there!). ;)

    • Haha that will be me! I’m trying to make a game plan for the official race merchandise section but it’s hard. This is my first half and possibly my last Disney run (it was soooo expensive!!!) so I kind of want every souvenir possible. The “I Did It!” shirt, the jacket, a mug, a car magnet…I may drop like $200 that I don’t really have on this stuff! But hopefully there will be enough free samples to kind of balance it out…

    • Haha well I’m just lucky I knew about that blog hop! I will definitely be writing a detailed blog post about every part of this race so get ready for that! And some words of advice: the race registration opened mid June and they sold out in July. I was so nervous about signing up that I actually waited until it said that it was 99% full before finally doing it! It sold out so fast so I’m glad I got a spot! Definitely sign up fast if you want to do it next year!

  6. Thanks for all the tips. My bucket list is to get the Coast to Coast medal for my 40th birthday (coming up in two years) so I’m socking away money and information for two Disney races. Now to just decide which ones :).

  7. Thank you so much for this! I am doing the Princess Run 10k (this is the inaugural year! Perf for newbies) and really nervous because running is very dfficult for me however i wanted to challenge myself and yes still dress up as a princess!! These prep tips are so helpful for so I can be as prepared as possible. I commend you (and everyone else) for doing the half!

  8. Pingback: A Look Back On My First Half Marathon | Run Away With Me

  9. Hi Krista! Loved this post!! I’m training for 2015’s and would love to hear more about your run!! :)

  10. Pingback: Wednesday Wisdom: How to Run the Disney Princess Half Marathon! | Princess on the Run

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