Tuesday, February 4, 2014

2014 WDW Marathon Week - Half Marathon

The big mile days were coming up with the half marathon on Saturday and the full marathon for Holly on Sunday. We decided we needed to keep the time on our feet light after Friday's 10K so we had a no-park day agenda. After the race we relaxed in the room a bit before hitting Fantasia Gardens for some mini golf. After that we went offsite with a few friends for lunch at Sea Dog Brewery (worth the visit). Next we had a Team AllCheers meet (where Dave fell asleep) and a Mickey Miles Podcast meet. A few of us had some drinks over at The Crew's Cup before heading to dinner at Il Mulino. We had a surprise dinner guest: Joe Taricani from The Marathon Show. Our meals were a bit delayed and we ended up in bed a little later than we had planned.

Two iPhone alarms going off at the same time that our wake up call started told us it was 2:15am. The third early wake up call led Holly to think that once was enough for Dopey. It was starting to feel like Groundhog Day. Up early, drive to Epcot, team picture, shuffle to the corrals and wait in the corrals.
We prepped everything we needed to prep and left the room around 3am. Disney likes to have you at the start area as soon as possible so they can make you walk for at least 20 minutes to the start line and sit in your corral forever (assuming you are in the mid-to-back corrals). At our Team AllEars meet-up we snapped our customary team photo and started grouping with others in our corrals. We were in Corral K with about 15 other friends. The walk to the corral (including potty break) was probably a half hour. Much better than last year. One funny/embarrassing thing did happen to Holly in the corrals. The gang decided to sing Happy Birthday to her. 1) Holly's Birthday is in June. 2) They unknowingly started singing right before the moment of silence began.

runDisney had a new corral system in-place this year. There were more corrals than before with varying numbers of people in each corral. The first few corrals had less people than the later corrals. Launch times for each corral varied as well. The table below (which we created to help out Team AllEars spectators) turned out to be a good estimate:

One nice thing runDisney does is to send off each corral with their own fireworks show. Apparently the addition of so many more corrals must have caused a technical glitch by the time they hit Corral K. No fireworks for us, but we did get a Team AllEars shout out from Rudy.

The group was going to split up a bit today. Dave was going for a PR so he flew solo. Half of the group was going to use Galloway 30/30 intervals and Holly's group was going to do 2:1 interval.

As far as the review of the race course, just read last year's report. It was the same race, different day. The sport cars were in the location, Stitch was still outside The Poly, and still no Duffy photo opp in Epcot. We thought it was less congested than the previous year going through the castle, even cone alley.

Holly's comments: We had a blast. It was an honor to see our friend Joe Weeks run up Main Street for the first time. A funny moment was when Joe turned back towards me as I was videoing him running up Main Street. He ran back to me and grabbed me and tried to spin me around. Yep, I’m heavier than I look! I’m glad I didn’t kill him! The notorious cone alley was better than previous times so I think the new corral spacing was an improvement. After Cone alley is the long run down World Drive back to Epcot. This is where every year I feel tired and start thinking about having to run a full marathon the next day. The funny thing is was even though we were all tired we ran fastest during this stretch. We were happy to get back into Epcot and we met up with some other teammates here and crossed in a big group. Happy to be done with one more race!

Team AllEars was out in force for the race. They were everywhere! The support from the Team means so much.

Dave's comments: Fortunately the morning wasn't as warm as it was the day before during the 10K, but it was still humid. I was also out there with (in my mind) a non-functioning Garmin. Since I could not get a satellite signal I thought the only thing it was good for was a heart monitor. In order to make sure I kept pace for my goal I used my iPhone timer and calculated the pace every mile. Over some drinks in Epcot later that day I learned the stop watch function still worked. Doh!

I didn't stop for pictures, or to say hello to our teammates spectating (with the exception of Laura's spectacular at Mile 7 - there was food and cold towels). I'm rude that way just plowing through it all. To make matters worse, I sweated out my iPod around mile 7. That made for a few boring miles. Even the kites at mile 11 didn't hold any interest. In the end I got a 9 minute PR and met my time goal. I still haven't found a passion for doing half marathons, and with this one being my second on the same course, I don't see a need to ever repeat this race again.

That closed Dave's races for the weekend. Holly surprised Dave with a gift - his own Grumpy medal. Since our team ran with the concept of naming Grumpy for the combination of the 5K, 10K, and Half she had medals made up for everyone on our team that participated in those three events only. This was a very nice surprise. Before hitting our main Team AllEars meet we hit Epcot for a quick lap around the World Showcase.
Here's our Half Marathon Video:

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