The Disneyland Half Marathon 2011

Hope you all had a great Labor Day weekend. I spent my three-day holiday at the happiest place on Earth…Disneyland! As much as I loathe big crowds of people and long lines, for some reason this weekend I shoved all of those peeves aside and had a great time.

This was my first half marathon. As you might’ve recalled I missed my last training race on July 4th, so I opted to do a few things differently this time around.

  • I rented a comfortable hotel room close to the race.
  • I read all of the race instructions beforehand.
  • I focused on my nutrition and hydration a week leading up to the race.

Despite my lack of sleep prior to the race (I was only able to squeeze in about 5 hours of sleep), I did surprisingly well. I had a lofty goal of completing the 13.1 mile race in 2 hours and 15 minutes. I came in at 2 hours and 27 minutes, so it’s definitely something I can work on. That’s cutting roughly one minute off of each mile, which I think can be done if I sleep well before the race and train consistently.

Overall, the Disneyland Half Marathon attracted almost 13,000 runners. There was never a point in the race where I was running alone. With exception of the starting corral zone, the route was incredibly well marked and impeccably manned. The route through Disneyland, California Adventure, and Downtown Disney were really fun — seeing characters dressed up along the route was awesome, and being able to run through the park that has been home to so many great memories was a great experience. It felt great to be able to run in the streets, too. Running through Angel Stadium was also an interesting experience. I’ve gone to a few baseball games there about five or six years ago. Never did I think I’d run through it for a half marathon. Times have certainly changed.

As racing tends to do, I’m incredibly pumped about the season ahead. I think this was a great barometer for me to track my progress and see the work that I’ll need to put into making Athens a success. Overall I’m focused on finishing, but most importantly, I’m focused on finishing injury-free. After completing the half marathon, I felt really sore and tense so I got iced up at the first aid station. I spent most of the day after the half marathon on my feet at Disneyland, taking advantage of my free park ticket. Unfortunately on Monday I was in so much pain that I slept most of the day away when I was not up taking meds, icing, or massaging my legs. I was limping and hobbling pretty bad and I thought I might’ve done some serious damage. On Tuesday I was able to walk around without a whole lot of discomfort, although I noticed that sitting for long periods of time tensed up my problem areas. I’m still working on icing my leg frequently, taking Advil when needed, and took an ice bath tonight. So far a bag of frozen vegetables and an ice pack has been my friend these past few hours.

I’m looking forward to bouncing back soon and getting back into training. With the LA Triathlon just 2 weeks and now 5 days away I’ve got some training to do before that big day. Until then, enjoy the pictures from my half marathon!

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