Race Report: Disney Marathon Part 3

Part 1 of my report, mostly pre-race and race morning can be found here.
Part 2: Miles 1-13.1 can be found here

Miles 13.1 Through 20

Split Time 2:00:27 (17:27/mile)
Total Time 5:26:35 (16:20/mile)

Miles 14 - 17 Osceola Parkway Death March Part 1

Miles 14 through 17 are run out on one of the main roads that runs through the Disney complex. These were some of the worst miles of the race. The miles seemed to go on forever and the temperature kept rising. At about mile 16, we came up to the runners who were heading towards the Hollywood Studios. At this point, all I could do was to keep moving forward and try to keep us ahead of the sweeper bus.

Miles 17 - 20 Wide World of Sports

Entering the Wide World of Sports was a nice change of pace. This portion was mostly on sidewalks, sometimes on roads, and the majority of it was shaded. At Mile 18 we ran a lap around their track. When we approached the track, we thought it would be soft rubber based on the look. Unfortunately, when we stepped on it, we knew right away it was just more concrete. Not a big deal, but a reprieve from the hard surfaces would have been nice 

We hit the baseball stadium at about mile 19 1/2. It was nice having some people in the seats cheering us on. At this point I began looking for the advertised "Mile 20 Spectacular". Based on the race documents, we thought that was supposed to go down in the stadium. What was really cool was as you approached home plate, they were broadcasting video up onto the jumbotron and calling out all the runners names over the PA system.

Running through the ballpark there were a bunch of photographers, which gave us the motivation to do some running. Once we exited the park, I was hopeful Cathy had something left in her to pick up the pace a little, but unfortunately she still did not feel well.

Mile 20 through Finish

Split Time 1:33:34 (15:05/mile)
Total Time 7:00:09 (16:02/mile)

Mile 20 Spectacular

Here are a few photos of the approach to the mile 20 (not so) spectacular. 

The mile 20 "spectacular" consisted of about some 10+foot oversized puppets of various Disney characters. When you approached the actual mile marker, Mickey, Minnie, and Pluto were on a raised stage. It was a nice distraction and helped to raise the energy some, but by no means was it spectacular

Miles 20 - 22 Osceola Parkway Death march Part 2

After we headed out of the Wide World of Sports, we walked back out onto Osceola Parkway. By now, it was over 80 degrees and we were hearing talk of the sweeper bus not too far behind us. By now, our only goal was to keep pressing on.

One of my favorite signs of the race

Mile 22 Cathy Swept

By mile 22, Cathy had had enough. She came to the conclusion it was inevitable she would be swept and she was getting really nauseous. As much as I wanted her to press on, I gave her a couple of minutes in the shade to recover, but she insisted I take off and leave her to be picked up by the sweeper bus. Since the sweeper buses were in sight behind us and I knew she would not be in trouble, I took off, having a whole bunch of energy left in the tank

Just before Mile 22 plus the Final Medical Station

As soon as I headed out solo, I tried to pace myself while passing the mass of walkers. By this point in the race, there were very few people left running. The only thing I had to be careful of was overheating

Miles 22.5 - 23.5 Hollywood Studios

The next couple of miles were mostly a blur. There wasn't much to see through this park. We ran through a small part of the backstage tour, and ran past the fake new york skyline. At this point all I wanted to do was get though to the end of the race, and I thought I might still be able to go under 7 hours

Miles 23.5 - 25 Crowded Boardwalk

After you exit the Hollywood Studios, the course follows the narrow sidewalks that take you to Epcot. Throughout this portion, I was often forced to walk, or when I could I would go out on the grass. There were definitely some bad choke points through this section. As much as I wanted to scream on your left over and over, it was easier to use these times as my walk break times. 

Mile 25 - Finish

We entered into the World Showcase portion of Epcot at the United Kingdom. From there, we ran counter clockwise around the lake. At this point, the end was clearly near. A few times I was tempted to stop at one of my old favorite drinking spots in Epcot and pick up a celebratory beverage to carry with me through the finish line. I decided against it in order to just keep moving. Once you run through the world showcase, it is a straight shot through Future World towards spaceship earth. From there, you run around spaceship earth, pass the gospel choir at mile 26 and out into the parking lot for the finish line.

Running into Epcot

Post Race

After I crossed the finish line, I got my medal, and grabbed a water and a powerade. It was so hot that they were forcing the runners to open the bottle and start drinking right away. I chugged down my powerade and stopped for a finisher's photo. I found Cathy and we caught the bus back to the hotel to chill the rest of the day before we headed home the next day. 

Post Race Thoughts and Lessons learned

When I crossed that finish line, I was glad to finish, but sad that Cathy could  not finish with me. I was still very proud of her for pushing through 22 miles. It has been over a week and she still is feeling pretty miserable. This bug that has been going around is pretty resilient. For the first few days, I wasn't sure she'd ever want to do a marathon again. Eventually she decided she would make another go at Disney  in the next few years. This weekend she decided she want to go back next year if possible. If given the opportunity, I will go after the goofy. One thing I do hope for next time is the ability to stop and take pictures. Being in the 2nd to last corral ad running against the clock gave us no time to stand in line to get our photo taken with various characters. This was a little disappointing given all the cool Photos opportunities throughout the race

I learned several lessons in my first marathon. The most important one is to carry my own water, especially if the wather will be hot and/so humid. With aid stations space around 1 - 1.5 miles, I needed to be drinking more often,especially later in the race.I also need to drink more earlier in the race so I don't get into a hydration deficit. Early in the race I was drinking 1 or 2 cups of water at the aid stations. Later in the race I was drinking 2 cups of water and 2 of poweraid. I also learned you cannot predict the weather six months in advance, even if the race historically has been pretty cold, sometimes it can be a hot one. I also should have done a better job hydrating a the 2 days prior to the race. I plan to take everything I learned at this race and apply it next month

Next month, I have another Marathon, the A1A in Fort Lauderdale. When we found out Cathy's mom wanted to run the her first half, Cathy decided to run it with her. I decided that this would be a good opportunity to run a second marathon, this time with a time goal. This course has a 6 hour limit,so I have to do better then that. Depending how my next few training runs go, I will probably be aiming for about 5:30. Of course I will have to plan for the hotter temps.


Matthew Smith said…
Woohoo!! Way to go, Kevin! That was an awesome race. I always get a little burst of energy when there are photographers around. :) Congrats on dominating those 26.2 miles. Nice work!
Lindsay said…
Congrats Kevin! Glad Cathy is doing ok and hope she is feeling better. Bummer about being swept but at least she was smart and didn't push herself any harder. There will be another chance to run Disney! Had to LOL at the "mile 20 spectacular", but being able to take pics with characters does make the races a little funner. Hopefully you'll get down in the next year or two for a re-run :)