Monday, November 12, 2012

Wine and Dine Half - the 2 day race: part 1

This is my account, or race recap if you will, of my 2012 Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon. I'm not really sure where to begin - my training started some 12 weeks ago. If you've followed my blog you've seen the training recaps each week. This was a fairly aggressive plan designed to get me running again after my injury last spring, but with the ultimate goal to result in a huge PR at Disney World. I had some acting up of my shin/calf and a small knee issue that slowed me down a bit, but if my last 2 long runs were any indication, a PR of some sort was definitely in my grasp when I got on the plane to fly to Orlando. The fact I'm starting this recap on my bumpy first leg home less than 18 hours after finishing what was certainly a bumpy race seems a bit ironic.

Warning - long post alert

Anyhoo...I should probably get to the race itself. I arrived at the expo over at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex on Friday afternoon and quickly secured my race packet, bib, and got outfitted in my "Coast to Coast Challenge" wristband that would be my companion until I crossed the finish line and a very nice race volunteer exchanged it for medal number 2 of the night. While waiting in the short line for my packet, I ran into Barb! She was my virtual training partner back in the winter for January's Tinker Bell Half and was also going for her C2C.

After saying "see you later" to Barb, I headed into the expo to shop around and pick up my race shirt. (Note to those doing Disney races, only the Princess Half has women's cut shirts and my size small race shirt, while I love it and am wearing it right now, was a bit too big. Tons of women were trying to exchange for smaller shirts.) The expo was quite similar to the larger race expos I've been too. It was well organized with tons of vendors.

I did something that I hadn't done at the Tinker Bell expo - I listened to a couple speakers, including the amazing Jeff Galloway. He had tons of practical advice for running a night race and discussed his run/walk method (which many runners used on the course - both to my amazement and chagrin).

After awhile, I met up with Christie and her friend and we headed to Plant Hollywood at Downtown Disney for a late dinner.

I was on my feet for quite awhile on Friday. I didn't think this would impact me much on Saturday night, but who knows.

Flash forward to race day. I spent the day staying off my feet, watching sports and having a healthy chicken pita sandwich with fruit for lunch. Plus lots of water.

I felt good and tried to take a little nap Saturday afternoon. I might have slept 20-30 min, it's hard to say. Around 5:00, I ate my leftover pasta with a creamy basil sauce for dinner (mistake?) and at 5:30 or so I got ready in my Jessie costume and hit up Starbucks for some last minute fuel.

It was about 65 degrees at race time (remember it was in the low 30s for my last two long runs at home). I had a jacket that I wore before checking my gear because I thought my arms would get cold, but in all honestly, I was overdressed for this race. My upper body was fine but I think the Jessie hat, capris and compression socks with my cow socks over them contributed to the clusterf*ck that was going to happen. Who knows. Hindsight is 20/20 or some crap like that, right?

I was able to just hang out in the grass and people watch while I waited for the race to start. I loved all the costumes and was totally blown away to see one woman light a cigarette and start smoking about 45 min before the start. For realz. There wasn't really anywhere to do any warm up or strides though. About 30 minutes before the start of the race, I hit the bathrooms one more time (there were about a million of them) because I'd been hydrating with water all afternoon. I tried to get as close to the start of Corral B as I could because I had some lofty goals for this race. I hadn't trained my ass off (literally, I lost about 6 pounds in the 12 weeks of training) to be stuck behind a bunch of walkers. With a few minutes to go before my corral (B) was to start (at 10:05 pm), I snapped pics of the starting fireworks for corral A.

I started my playlist and tucked away my phone. Pretty soon, they were counting down the start and the fireworks for corral B went off and the nearly 2400 of us started the slog to the starting line. (There were about 14000 people running the half - bib numbers went up to 14300).

Remember how I said I was typing this recap on my first flight home? The 2 vodka cranberries I've had are kicking in. Back soon.

*I wrote the above section on the first of two plane rides home Sunday night. It's now Monday morning and I've decided to publish this race report in two parts. I still need to process the race itself.*

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

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