I did it! I ran my first 10k! The best part was it was at the Happiest Place on Earth with my best friends. Disneyland 10K has been the most fun of all the running events I done thus far.
Registration for the Disneyland Half Marathon weekend was in January for the Labor Day weekend events. This event is so popular that all the running events including the Half Marathon, 10K, and 5K events tend to sell out within hours. The good news is because registration is so far in advance of the actual event you’ve got plenty of time to train.
Back in January I was training for the Diva Dash 5K Obstacle Run that was happening in March. I was doing a lot of strength training so that I would be able to lift and scramble myself over and under the obstacles.
After March I had to keep motivated to keep running and training for the longest distance run of my life. I was doing so well until mid-June. On one of my usual runs with my two Jack Russell terriers, Buster Brown and Pepper Ann, a rogue squirrel caught Buster Brown’s eye and he darted right and caught me off balance. The world slowed down as I tried to catch my footing. There was a brief moment when I thought I was going to be okay, but that quickly ended as I saw my head passing my hips. I was headed towards the pavement. I put my right hand out to break my fall as my right knee skimmed the pavement and my momentum carried my right shoulder into the ground. I rolled over to sit with my head down in disappointment. I couldn’t believe I fell, again. The road rash was painful. Direct sunlight made it worse. So needless to say, I was out of commission for four weeks. Just when I thought I would get back to running, I had to have minor eye surgery and was banned from any cardio for two weeks. By this point I had just four weeks left to get ready for my first 10K.
Before I knew it, Labor Day weekend arrived. We were excited to pick up our packets for the 10K race the next morning.
On race day, we were up early to get there by 5 a.m. Our race was schedule to start at 6:15 a.m. Everyone was in a great mood. We were all excited. The air was electric. It was awesome! With 7800 people corralled, we patiently made our way to the Start Line.
The route began down the streets of Anaheim and through the Anaheim Convention Center.
Spectators lined the streets to cheer us on.
We entered California Adventure through the back entrance behind the Tower of Terror. Part of the fun was the privilege of seeing the secrets of Disney behind the scenes.
We made our way through the different parts of the park. The parks were closed to the general public, so Cast Members lined the route to cheer us on. They were great. Characters were available at the Mile Markers for Photo-ops. Usually the lines were long and we didn’t want to sacrifice our time to wait in these lines, so we took photos off to the side and kept trekking on.
This was my first view of Cars Land. McQueen and Mater were onsite. Much to my disappointment Luigi was nowhere to be seen.
Paradise Pier was just up ahead and Mickey’s Fun Wheel was in sight. The rides, lights and fountains were all on.
We ran down the boardwalk and over to Buena Vista Street to Hollywood Land.
Once again we were in the back lot heading down a tunnel only to emerge at the entrance gate of Disneyland. All I could hear was a Cast Member cheering “now you’re going to Disneyland!”
We ran down Main Street, U.S.A.! It was picture perfect. The course took us through TomorrowLand.
We had Fantasy Land with the famous “It’s A Small World” all to ourselves. The carousel and Fantasy Faire were busy with characters of Alice in Wonderland. We ran through Sleeping Beauty’s Castle before we headed to FrontierLand. Looping around the curves and bends we made our way through the woods and out to the final leg of the race, Downtown Disney.
The Finish Line was just up ahead. The happiest race on Earth was nearly over. We did it! And we will surely do it again next year.