August 2, 2015

Little Mermaid Running Costume

Now that I have established my love/hate relationship with running, I fell compelled to inform you of my love/LOVE relationship with Disney. I've always liked Disney. I grew up watching the movies, I knew all of the words to all of the songs, and as a So Cal kid, I had my fair share of Disneyland trips.

Then I married into a Disney family, got an annual pass, and now I think it's fair to say that I'm obsessed with Disney. But you'll hear more about that later.

This year I discovered something as my two worlds collided... Disney races!

In January, I did the inaugural Star Wars 10k with my brother.
My daughter even ran the kids race later that morning.

 It was a really fun day, and it got me all sorts of excited to participate in even more Disney races.

As with anything, there are pros and cons to Disney races. Two pretty major cons, actually. First of all, the races are relatively expensive. And as if the entrance fee itself weren't expensive enough, the races start at 5:30 am, so unless you live really close by or don't mind waking up at like, 3:00 am, you would probably want a hotel room. Also, the registration doesn't include park entrance, or even a discount, so if you wanted to go into the parks, you would also have to purchase a ticket. All that adds up quickly.

Second, they're amazing. That, in and of itself is not a con. But because they are so amazing, they are wildly popular and they sell out quickly. The shorter races like the 5 and 10k's usually sell out within an hour. They're are challenges which (on the West Coast) combine the 10k and the half marathon. So also sell out within the first day. Race registration opens up on Tuesdays at 9:00am Pacific Standard Time. That means you should know what race you're going to run, have you're account info ready, and be sitting a computer with high speed internet and the rundisney website open at 8:55. I am not exaggerating. Side note: During the last Disney race I tried to sign my family up for, I was in the website and logged in to by 8:58. I signed myself up, my husband up, and my daughter up, in that order. By 9:08, I went to sign my son up for his kids race. It put me on hold, but said not to worry, being on hold doesn't mean it's sold out, spots could still be open. I sat and refreshed and tried over and over, as the website instructed, but I was still on hold. It opened up for a second and I jumped at the opportunity, but before I could even submit his info, the screen changed. The race had officially sold out. Within a half hour... the kids race! 

That being said, as soon as my first Disney race ended, I knew I wanted to do the next one. The next one happened to be the Tinkerbell race in May, during Mother's Day weekend. And of course, it had already sold out. Then I learned there were still openings through various charities that participate in the races. I decided to run the Half Marathon for the Special Olympics of Southern California, and I became part of an awesome group that fundraises for the SOSC.
Keeping in Disney race tradition, I dressed up in a race "costume." Even though a large majority of the runners dressed at Tinkerbell and other fairies, I had been dying to dress up as Ariel. So I did. :)
Some people like to dress in actual costumes. I like to err on the side of comfort while I run. Especially in longer races. So I opted out of a mermaid tail. Instead I went for green compression socks, a green Sparkle Athletic skirt, and a purple tank top from Target. My mom helped me add some leftover sparkly fabric to the top to form clam shells. Then I painted a couple of starfish, stuck one between my clam shells, and the other on a clip to put in my hair. Easy!

As you can tell from the pictures above, the weight of the ensemble made the clam shells start to droop a bit throughout the run. Fortunately, my boobs do not reside in the middle of my stomach. But other than that, I got a lot of compliments and I loved my outfit!

Some perks along the way:
*Start line anticipation! It's one of my favorite things about racing, and Disney does it better than   
anyone. Fireworks, cheering, Mickey and Minnie...
*Captain Hook giving out hook bumps (like fist bumps) along the course.
*Running through the castle decorated for the Diamond Anniversary celebration.
*Tinkerbell sighting (no time to stop for pictures, I'm not fast enough to make up that time!)
*Brian catching me and giving me a mental health boost along the 7th mile!
*A couple of little kids throwing pixie dust on people... adorable and the only time I will ever enjoy someone throwing glitter at me!
 *High five from Mickey at the finish line!
*Breakfast with Goofy immediately following the finish!

It was such a fun morning and I'm gearing up to run my next Disney race in about a month. I will be doing the Dumbo Double Dare- 10k on Saturday and a half on Sunday- that means 2 costumes! Stay tuned!

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