Welcome to my Run Disney Journal! Kyle and I have ran several Run Disney races but never a challenge of this caliber! We will be taking on the Dopey Challenge January 7-10th, 2021! This entails running a 5K Thursday, 10K Friday, Half Marathon Saturday, and a Full Marathon on Sunday! This will likely be the most challenging training I have completed since being a competitive swimmer in college.
To be honest, I have never been a journaling person. I tried keeping a journal several times as a kid but never fully got into it. I decided with the intensity of the training and all of the things that go into something like this, it would be nice to be able to share this experience with everyone! This will include thoughts on training, supplemental workouts, nutrition, and running gear that I try through the process. My journal will also include information on Run Disney and their races, as well as how we go about race weekends. For more specific details on race weekends, be sure to check out our articles on Princess Weekend and Wine and Dine weekend!
So let us start at the beginning…
May 12, 2020
IT IS REGISTRATION DAY! As a Walt Disney World Annual Passholder, we were given the opportunity to register early on May 7th but unfortunately did not get a spot in the early access registration. We have just completed registration and I have never been so excited in all my life! We used two laptops, an iPad, and two cell phones to get a spot in registration! Although I am a little scared, I am definitely excited!
Kyle and I also decided to pre-order the race weekend jackets. We have never done this before but thought we should for our first Dopey Challenge. The only frustrating thing is that we have NO IDEA what the design will be! The expo is my favorite thing besides the actual races and I am counting down the days till we get our jackets and other gear!
May 15, 2020
I am still as pumped as I was on registration day! I am so excited that I am already working on our list of costumes and our packing list! Yes, I am this crazy. Yes, I am really that excited. Kyle and I have been waiting for this race for a long time! In previous years we have done Dalmatians, The Incredibles, Huey, Dewey, and Louie, Donald and Daisy, and the Red Hearts Cards from Alice in Wonderland. So far we have decided on the following for the Dopey Challenge!
- 5K: Mickey and Minnie Mouse
- 10K: Tigger and Winnie the Pooh
- Half Marathon: Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dumb
- Full Marathon: Dopey and Doc
Now we just need to buy our costumes and make sure we have extra layers if needed for the possible cold!
Be sure to plan a costume that you can layer for the cold or remove layers for heat. We have run in the 30s-70s at Run Disney races. It has also rained during some of our races.
May 19, 2020
I am officially starting my ‘Pre-training’ for Dopey Training. By June 30th I need to be ready to run 45 minutes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I also have to start running between four to five miles on Saturday so I am ready for when training starts.
I have decided that the summer weather in Florida is fairly awful for running, after this morning. The humidity has returned and with that comes exhaustion while running and after running. Below is a list of ways I try to keep myself feeling good while running in the heat.
- Early early early morning runs! I try to get up five minutes earlier each day I run in the morning to try and combat the heat. If I can start my run in the pre-sunrise light, I usually do not notice the heat and humidity as much. I also lessen the chance of sunburn on very long runs! The five minute difference just makes it a little easier than going from a 7:00AM alarm to a 5:30AM alarm.
- Change your pace! Although it sounds crazy and counter productive, I find trying to run my normal pace leads to worse runs. I run out of energy faster and find my mental strength isn’t as strong in the heat causing me to give up on runs faster and not complete my mileage (leading to frustration and disappointment). Although running slower, I feel better and know I will thank myself for it later.
- Cool down routine! Every time I finish a run, I go through the same routine. I try to walk a few tenths of a mile before coming back inside in order not to cause any shock to my system with the AC in our apartment. I also do this to help keep the blood flowing since I just pushed my body so hard for so long. Once I come inside I grab a Powerade Zero and start taking sips to rehydrate. I then take time to stretch for about 5-10 minutes after my breathing and heart rate come down. If I don’t stretch then, I never will which will increase risk of injury. If I have the time, I will finish the Powerade before going on to anything else in the day to help ensure I have replaced at least 20 ounces of fluid.
- Hydrate! Again, the heat can be brutal! It is critical that you hydrate but that you also do it correctly. While running, the body shifts a majority of your blood supply to the muscles you are using and away from the GI tract. This means that chugging fluids and eating a lot of food directly after running can make you nauseated as the blood supply begins to redistribute to the stomach. Instead, take a few minutes to cool down and start with sips of water, Gatorade, Powerade, or whatever you drink of choice is. Also be sure to avoid ice cold drinks especially when running in the sun, this can make it more difficult for you to cool down instead of making it easier.
- Listen to your body while running and after your run! If you are running alone, you should always have a phone or way to communicate with someone. This way if you need help you can call for it whether it be due to heat, injury, or weather. If the heat is getting to you, take the time to slow down or walk. You may even need to cut out your last lap or laps if it is too hot. Also be sure not only to feed and hydrate your body after running in the heat, but also reenergize. The heat will take it out of you and you made need a nap later in the day. Take it! Your body will thank you and so will you friends and family because you will be less grumpy.
Always make sure someone knows your general running plan when you decide to run alone (I.e. where you are going to run to and how long you estimate to be gone).
May 29, 2020
Today was an exciting day with the Run Disney Facebook group! One of the women in the group decided to start a post for a little ‘follow for follow’ on instagram! Although there were easily over 100 people and took a long time to get everyone, I am super pumped! Not only did I get new Disney friends, I got new running friends! It will certainly be nice to go through this journey with other people and be able to share daily with others doing the same thing! I know this is going to be tough but I am ready for it!