Thursday, September 13, 2012

Disneyland Half Marathon part II

To read part I, click here!

As we exited Disney property, it began to get very hot and very sunny.  We turned a corner and the sun blinded me.  I could not see the course ahead of me.  I could not even run because I was afraid I would trip. I do usually run with sunglasses, but I usually end up not using them so I left them behind.  We run up a ramp over an expressway, and then back down it.  The sun was still blinding me.  Thankfully, we made a turn and the sun was to my left.

From studying the course map before hand, I knew that Angle Stadium was at mile nine.  This time in the race, I was at mile marker six.  I began looking for the stadium in the distance.  To pass the miles in Anaheim, there was all kinds of non-Disney entertainment.  There was classic cars, high school bands, high school cheerleaders and dance teams.  I was very impressed with all of this.  My biggest concern with this race was all the miles off Disney property and through the town of Anaheim.  They did a great job at keeping the race fun, even though we were off Disney property.

By mile eight, I could see Angle Stadium in the distance.  As we got closer and closer, there were lots of community groups there cheering us on.  I saw Boy Scouts and local running clubs giving out snacks on the sidelines.  Then we arrived at the stadium.  The stadium was not full, but there was a lot of people in the stands cheering the runners on.  As we ran by, the runners were all shown on the jumbo screen.  The DJ inside the stadium was fun and gave me a second wind.

Leaving the stadium, I knew I had three miles left--the toughest three miles of the race.  I ran into a friend, Megan, and we chatted a bit.  The course was still filled with entertainment--mostly cheerleader.  I could see the Tower of Terror ride in the distance.  I knew I was getting close!

As we got back to Disney property, we still had a mile to go.  We ran behind California Adventure, just where we had around mile two.  I could see the Paradise Pier hotel in the distance.  Once I got there, it was just a quarter mile to the finish.  At this time, I felt a surge of energy!  I ran that last quarter mile strong and crossed the finish line.

Going through the finisher chute is always a bit overwhelming to me.  I was handed a cool towel and then my medal!  My next stop was the Coast to Coast challenge booth where I got my Coast to Coast medal.  Exiting the runners area, I grabbed a water, a power aid and a runner's snack box.  I did it!  I completed my fourth half marathon.  Then I headed back to my room for a shower and to get something to eat!

A dream is a wish...

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