Friday, July 10, 2015

Yep.... It Just Got Real

So last year, sometime in late January, I had this epiphany that I wanted to run a half-marathon,
but not just any half marathon, the Disney Princess Half Marathon to be exact. This is especially confounding as up until that point I had never ran in any race, EVER. I mean not a 5K or even 1 mile outdoors.  But there I was, with stars in my eyes dreaming about crossing the finish line at the 2015 Disney Princess Half Marathon. OK, the idea of running in a costume was probably about 85% of the allure; the other 15% was the thought of accomplishing something I would never have thought to tackle in my wildest dreams...  Scratch that, I’d say it was 50% running in a Disney-themed costume, 45% the thought of earning one of those awesome blingy runDisney medals and maybe 5% accomplishing a goal.    In order to prepare myself, I didn’t do the logical thing and sign up for a local 5K or 10K for that matter. Instead I registered for the Disney World 2014 Tower of Terror 10-miler in October, because that is how I roll y’all, go big or go home.  That was my chosen race to ease me into the 2015 Princess Half Marathon, I figured if I was going to get swept from a runDisney event I would rather it be at the TOT and not the Princess Half (and yes, if you don’t maintain the 16 min/mile minimum pace they will “sweep” you from the course, usher you onto a bus for a humiliating ride back to the finish line – oh the horror).  Sadly, 3 months into my training I developed a femoral neck stress fracture which took me out of commission for months and forced me to defer my TOT race until the following year (you can read all about my fracture heartbreak here).  Fast forward to  the end of 2014 when I received an email from Disney to alert me that the TOT was going to be cancelled in 2015, and as a result I was eligible for early registration for my choice of runDisney events including the 2016 Disney Princess Half Marathon. Whaaaa?  How can that be? I don’t know that the average person can comprehend the enormity of this golden ticket handed to me.

For those of you living under a rock and don’t know this, registering for the Disney Princess Half Marathon is a coordinated effort that one starts to prepare for weeks in advance of the registration
date. First, you make sure that you have your account squared away, then you assemble a team of 3-5 reliable people who will be available at 12:00PM EST on registration day and finally you appropriate 1 computer for each member of your team (this is why performing this task at your place of employment ends up being desirable).  About 30 minutes before registration opens, every member of your strike force should be at their respective computers, logged into using your account so that the second registration is open it all hands on deck.  The first person to get into the system and hit that final “submit” button is the victor.  I cannot emphasize enough how stressful it is registering for an event that sells out in a couple of hours every year. It is for this reason that getting the opportunity for early registration was a precious gift that I was NOT going to squander.
To make sure I didn't blow it, I put a reminder on my Outlook calendar to follow up with runDisney on July 1, 2015, two weeks prior to open registration for the race. Therefore, on July 1 I logged into my computer with the intention of emailing runDisney regarding a status update on my early registration when I was shocked to see the email sitting right there in my inbox, staring me in the face, letting me know that registration was open for me. Without a second glance, I quickly hit the link in the email taking me to and my chance to register 2 full weeks before anyone else.  I excitedly checked off everything that I wanted to participated in/purchase that weekend: the 5K, Half Marathon, Merchandise Bundle and the Half Marathon Retreat.  When I hit submit and received my confirmation email I was beyond dizzy… that was until I found out my Partner in Crime (henceforth known as my PIC), Melinda was also able to register early too which nearly put me over the edge  of glory (there is a story behind how she was able to accomplish registration that day but let’s just say that it was a happy mistake on my part and I have no regrets).  Being the typical Type-A personality, I of course immediately determined our travel dates and booked our Disney hotel.
Needless to say, as of that moment I became a TriWizard Champion, runner, something 2 years ago I never thought would pass from my lips. But here I am an active member of the Frederick Steeple Chasers Women’s Distance Running Club with six 5Ks scheduled this summer and the Marine Corp Marathon 10K in October.  My journey to those blingy runDisney medals will no doubt be full of mayhem and belly laughs that I can’t wait to share with my PIC.  Let’s be honest, I have no idea what I am doing but thanks to the Google, Facebook and Pinterest I’m sure I will figure it out along the way! 

1 comment: