Who’s ready to earn THREE all new medals at the Princess Half Marathon?
As you know, runDisney threw us a curve by introducing a few new challenges for the 2013-2014 race season.? The first challenge was the Dumbo Double Dare followed by the new Dopey Challenge.? The Princess Half Marathon weekend was “plussed” as well with the addition of the Enchanted 10K and the Glass Slipper Challenge.
Like many of us in the runDisney cult, er, culture, I’ve toyed with the idea of running Goofy.? Earning an extra medal by running back to back races sounded like quite the challenge.? Since I’ve never run a full marathon before, I’ve hesitated.? And keep hesitating.? I wanted something a little less intimidating to try first.
When the Dumbo Double Dare Challenge was introduced, I jumped all over it! My husband was all in too and we completed our first back to back racing weekend in September.? Check out my race recaps of the 10K and the Half if you are signed up for 2014.
While not an official challenge, I repeated back to back races again in January when I completed both the Tinker Bell 10K and the Tinker Bell Half Marathon.? Since I’ve done this twice (and signed up to do the Dumbo next year!) I’m comfortable claiming some experience with these distance challenges.? I’m not an “expert” but I did stay at a Holliday Inn last night (get it?).
Tips to completing both races successfully:
1.? Train back to back. Before these challenges, I never ran two days in a row.? Since I’m a Galloway girl, I took his training plan to heart and it’s been fantastic in getting my legs used to running two races in a row.? He suggests walking on Saturday and running on Sunday for your long run.? This completely worked for me.? I went into both DDD and Tink weekends confident I could complete both races strong.
I know we are getting short on time, but you can still do this.? Walk 3 miles on Saturday followed by your long run on Sunday.? The next week do 4 miles followed by your long run.? You should get the idea of what it will feel like even if you only train a couple of weeks with the back to back runs.
2.? Hydrate.? Hydrate.? Hydrate.? Refuel.? Refuel.? Refuel.? With 2 races, plus Florida’s crazy warm (usually) weather, be sure to keep drinking.? This helps your muscles recover.? Start a good week in advance.? Trust me.
Once you finish the first race, be sure to replenish your glycogen and sodium levels.? This means you need to eat.? Permission to eat all the foods?? Heck yeah.? Be sure to throw in something salty like pretzels or nuts to help with sodium levels.
3.? Limit your park time pre-race.? I know, I know, this one is HARD!? But if this is your first time racing back to back, again, trust me.? You want to save those legs for the bling.? After the 10K at Dumbo, my family spent time at the pool and around our resort.? This allowed me to keep my legs moving (treading water, kicking from the steps), but kept the miles off my feet. You want to stay active, but not TOO active.? If you have to hit the parks, try to make a shorter than usual day of it.? Rest.? Go to bed early.? It helps!
4.? Take the 10K easy and race the Half.?? Or do the opposite.? I just don’t recommend trying to race both for PR’s unless you are really used to this kind of high mileage back to back.? I am not.? My strategy has been to take the 10Ks easy and stop for all the pictures.? Yes, this has meant racing to beat the sweepers momentarily both times, but it was worth it.? And we had plenty of warning where we stood on the course as the bike sweepers were loudly proclaiming, “You are 2 minutes ahead of pace!”? When we heard that, we knew it was time for less lines and more running.? My strategy for the halves were to just keep moving.? Did I stop for some pictures?? Of course.? But they were of the fly by selfie type, not the stand in line for a one on one with Darth Vader type.
|Tinker Bell Half Marathon- no line stopping for me!|
5.? Recovery is key.? Keep it tight- wear compression socks or sleeves after the first race.? Don’t worry, you won’t be alone.? Rock those sleeves proudly!? Stretch and foam roll as soon as you can get back to your room.? You will appreciate the extra attention when that 3am wake up comes for the half.
6.? Get Banded!? One very important aspect of this challenge is to make sure you get your 10K completion band.? This is proof that you ran and completed the 10K and will remain on your wrist during the half marathon.? It’s similar to the Coast to Coast bands and shouldn’t bother you much at all.? Once you complete the 10K, pick up your bling and move to the area where volunteers have the bands.? It will be well marked as “Glass Slipper Challenge” and you should also hear the volunteers call you over.
Alright- here’s a little TMI tip for ya.? Personally, I ask for it on my left hand… since I use my right when I’m in the porta-potties.? You’re welcome.
7.? HAVE FUN.? It’s Disney, right?? So make sure you keep that tiara on tight and have some fun while you are out there!
Thanks so much to my co-host, Didi Marie with DisTherapy for this fantastic blog hop!? Be sure to check out the other stops on the hop to prepare for YOUR best Princess Half Marathon yet!? Click on the picture below to see the list of all the great blogs posting in the hop.? It goes LIVE on Monday morning.
What other tips do you have for running back to back challenge races?? Are you running the Glass Slipper Challenge?? What’s your strategy for each race?
Patty Holliday is a Marvel loving, Disney obsessed wife, and mother of four. She’s a travel agent specializing in Disney & Universal vacations- and loves a candid confession. Find her in Virginia (or anywhere frequent flyer miles or her trusty minivan takes her.)