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My Tinkerbell ½ Marathon race story

Friday, January 25, 2013

I have wanted to run this race ever since I heard of it! I belong to a team on Spark People that is called: The Forest Green Pixies. So running the Tinkerbell ½ Marathon seemed to be the perfect race, since I’m already a Pixie myself!! So I spoke to the other Pixies to see if anyone else would be interested in meeting up and running it with me. There were 3 other crazy Pixies who registered!

What were the biggest reasons I wanted to run this race?
~To run my first ½ Marathon!
~To meet other Pixies that I have know for a couple years only on line!
~To receive that HUGE Tinkerbell finisher’s Metal!

I have never ran a ½ Marathon, and what a great way to start, than with The Disney Tinkerbell ½ Marathon! Disney really knows how to make running FUN!!

We all planed to meet-up at the Tinkerbell Expo. After getting my race bib and shirt, I stood in line to have my picture taken with Ali Vincent! She was the Season 5, Biggest Loser Winner! She was the first female winner in the show’s history! That was pretty cool!

I met up with the other Pixies at the Expo and then again for dinner. It was really fun to put a voice with the faces that we’ve known for a couple years!

We found out that we were all in the same starting corral. (the last corral! Lol) So we made plans to meet-up in the morning. (very early morning)

Here’s Debbie before the race. You'd never know that it’s 3:30am by this pic, huh! Look how energetic she is!

Here I am before the race too! You can’t see it but I bought a tiny “fanny pack” to carry my cell phone in because I knew I would be taking pictures along the route! Disney has many characters all along the race route that was within the parks that you can take your picture with.

The Race began at 5am so that everyone could get thru the California Adventure and Disneyland before the gates opened to the public! There were about 14,000 runners in this race so it took almost 40-45 minute before we crossed over the “starting” line! That’s a lot of people!! The race was now on!! Maureen and Debbie took off together and Erin and I ran together. About the time we were at the mile marker 1, there was a guy standing holding a sign. He was the “Course Liar“! Lol! He would shout things like: “You’re almost there!” “You’ll be at the finish line soon!“ He was too funny!

The first 3 miles were zig-zagging thru the California Adventure. We ran thru the New Cars section and Radiator Springs. (we stopped for one of the photo opportunities)

I never thought I would be running 13 miles with my cell phone in my had, taking pictures! But while inside both Disney Parks, I did!

Then on to the World of Color Water show for another photo opp!

Then the next 2.5-3 miles were within Disneyland.

Down Main Street thru Tomorrow Land where we found Waldo.

Then Tinkerbell.

Around the Matterhorn, past It’s A Small World, Hi-5ing employees and characters along the route.

Then running behind the scenes and coming out by Story Book Land, through Cinderella's Castle.

Then over to Adventure Land where the Pirates of Carribean is! There were several Pirates including Jack Sparrow there for Pictures and more cheering for us to keep running! Past the Haunted Mansion, Splash Mountain, and back behind the scenes and out of the park we go!

As soon as we got out of the park, there were the Red Hat Society Ladies all lined up cheering as we ran past! There must have been 100-150 of them (maybe more) along this street!! All reaching to hi-5 us as we ran past!!

Then there was nothing but neighborhood homes, pavement, and…. What’s that drumming? It’s a Band!! About every mile (outside of the Disney Parks) were High School Marching Bands and Cheer Leaders!! It was soo cool to run past the Cheer Leaders!! They would read our names off our race bibs and cheer us on by name!! “keep running Paulette”!! "Let's go Runners" Plus more Hi-5s there too! It was just what I needed to keep wogging along!! Other people along the race had signs saying: Worse Parade Ever! Lol!! Too funny!

By about mile 7 I did a body check with Erin. She was doing pretty good. I didn’t have much issues except I could feel the soreness in my thighs starting. By Mile 8 the Race Pace Setter (who runs at a 16 min mile pace) had caught up with us! Yikes!! We needed to step up our pace!! By mile 10 Erin’s knee was starting to bother her. I told her that I was going to keep running and to catch up when she could. (I wouldn’t be that far ahead of her) By Mile 11, I started to feel weird, like I was light headed and going to be sick! So I slowed down and took it easy for about 5 minutes. I started talking to “Wifey“ (my boyfriend, who recently passed away just 3 weeks ago) I told him: “you know I want to finish this race, and I don’t want to give up after I’ve come this far, right?” “So lets do this together!“ “I know I can do this!” “I CAN DO THIS!” I just kept repeating to myself: “I CAN DO THIS” and before I realized it, I was back within Disneyland again and passing mile 12!!! OMG!! I am at Mile 12!! I was soo excited!!

Then there was another band off in the distance. This band played jazzier music than all the other bands!! I couldn’t see them but they were getting louder and louder!! The music was perfect for jogging!! Then I came around the corner and saw the band! There were people who were shouting: You have only .2 of a mile to go!! I was almost there!! I could see the Finish Line!! But the course made a sharp left to go around the ticket booth for the parking lot and back again!! I was soo close! As I passed mile 13, I just ran with everything I had left!! (which probably was equal to a crawl!) I heard the announcer call out my name as I crossed the finished line!! I made it!! 13.1 miles!! I really did it!! There was confetti all over the place from the first people who crossed the finish line but at that moment, it was MY confetti!! YEA ME!! I DID IT!

I can’t wait to hang that Metal from my rearview mirror and watch it chip glass from my windshield!! Oh yea! Lol!

A friend once told me: You can divide a ½ Marathon in 2 equal parts: The first 10 miles and the last 3.… It sounds about right, don’t you think?
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