Yeti Ultra 24-Hour Virtual Challenge: Race Recap
Happy Friday everyone! Ah…rest days can be hard, but not when the temperature flips the script on you and it’s cold out of no where! Yes, Floridians are pretty much wusses 😉
Here’s my last Disney weekend recap 😉
After our night of margarita madness, we woke up bright and early Sunday to get to watch the Disney World Marathon! Being that it was the 20th Anniversary weekend, the crowds and traffic were immense! Still, I couldn’t wait to cheer on Kris as she’d worked so hard on this race! Her along with many of my other friends were running this marathon as their first! The training, the jitters, the unknown – I’ve had many a’pep- talk with these guys to calm them down as best I could! And I haven’t even run a marathon yet!We met up with Sunita and Michael along with another friend’s hubby Brian (she was racing) to board the shuttle over to Epcot and see the race. We’d planned on going earlier to see from the Magic Kingson but were unsure how to even navigate there and then back to the finish. I figured the finish line was what mattered the most!
All that bling, the finish line, and food truck (a.k.a. cupcake heaven)
What an experience! Besides a 10k last year and the Brandon Half, I’d not been able to spectate many races. Never a full marathon. So, I was excited to give back and be able to cheer other runners on as they accomplished such a huge goal. Since I’ll be doing Marine Corp in October, I knew this was just the mojo I needed!
We were right outside of the Epcot globe, just steps away from the finish line. We saw so many cool moments! We got to see the fastest woman finish in 2:47! What!? Then the pace groups started to come through starting with the 3-hour pace group. We cheered on loved ones of those standing near us; I met a wife of one husband running who was part of the Disney Perfect 20 (he’d ran all 20 Disney World Marathons!) Some runners had difficulty, but to see fellow runners helping them out – the brotherhood of the marathon – made me tear up at times.
A happy pace group leader, 2 awesome runners helping a woman finish, a mom picked up her son to run into the finish with her – kind of.
I remembered the pace requirements for Boston and realized how many people were trying to qualify and started yelling super loud for them. To see people, making the run look seamless, cruise in and qualify for such a prestigious race was massively inspiring. Others, were just shooting for a PR – you could see it on their faces. I really loved it when I saw someone with their name on their shirt or a dressed as a character. It made it that much easier to give them love!
Then, we started looking for those we knew from the run group. First through the chute was my buddy Caribbean Steve. He’s run many-a-marathon, but seeing a familiar face was just enough to make me scream my head off. He looked over with a big smile and gunned it for the finish. As the 4:00 pace group came through I started to look for Kris. I was getting her text updates but hadn’t had once since mile 20. She was shooting for a finish around 4 hours. We’d talked a lot about it back and forth and I kept reminding her that she was going to be a marathoner no matter what! With the weather being in the 80s, I was more worried she think about being safe. I saw her do that when I’d gotten that last update. She slowed down from a steady (Miles 1-15k) 9:20 pace to right around 9:45. I also had hoped I’d asked her what she was wearing. Whoops. So I had to search for her, knowing she had a hat on, as clusters of runners came through. Around when the clock said 4:30, I saw her and think I may have deafened everyone around me I yelled so loud – “FINISH STRONG KRIS, YOU GOT IT GIRL!!”
A happy finisher, Caribbean Steve cheesin’, Kris finishing strong
As soon as I knew she’d finished I bid our pals “see ya later” and headed over to the finishers’ area. It was chaotic. We were all meeting at the A-B tent so once I got there hubs and I found a few other run group friends who were done. I congratulated them all with a big hug, not caring how sweaty and faint they were. I saw Kris come through the bag check corridor and ran over to give her a big hug. She looked up at me, back hunched and said, “I never want to do that again.” Lols. She thanked me for coming which I shrugged off – that’s just what we do – and we made our way over to her family who found our group too. With a plethora of ice packs and me helping her apply biofreeze, Kris told the tale of what happened. We all reminded her she still had a kick butt race! She finished in 4:12!
I reminded her how much she inspires me every day. Without her and my other buds I’ve befriended and run with quite regularly, I would doubt myself on a daily basis. I’m one lucky girl 😉
We were unable to get a late check out with our room due to the mass amounts of people staying that weekend, so we had to leave sooner than we wanted and head back to pack up. I didn’t get to see a few other friends finish, but made sure to blow up their texts and twitter feeds with love!
The day after, I checked up on Kris to ask her how she felt. I quote: “Like I got hit with a truck multiple times.” Horray for marathons! 😉
You can take a peek at my other WDW Weekend posts here!
Have you ever been able to spectate a marathon/race?