I’m currently icing a knee in bed (more on that in a minute) so I thought I’d write a few thoughts about the race today.
First of all, no, it’s not a Disney race.
I know, I know. My family was shocked too. Sometimes I actually do run normal ol’ races! Granted, not often, but it happens.
I first ran this one in 2014 and discovered it’s just a gem of a race. I sign up every year even though it’s right after Princess and I’m not always up to running it.
I probably should not have run the half today based on the flu and slow recovery I’ve had, but I was feeling good at bib pickup yesterday and thought why not?
While this isn’t a Disney race, it does have some similarities.
It also has an early morning call for busses. We start up – somewhere- and run down through Mesa with a very gradual decline.
I was out the door by 4 to make sure I hit the last shuttle at 5:15 am.
Just like runDisney, Star Wars was represented. Exactly the same.
Well. Sorta. Ok, not really. But A for effort! In 2014 this stop was CarsLand themed, so I sense these are my people.
This was one of many plentiful water/Gatorade stops. We also had oranges and bananas on the course.
The girls had Leia buns and Jedi robes.
I loved the effort here.
We also had character stops!
Ok, so just one. But not much of a line which was a bonus.
Patricia and Dana are runDisney vets and Arizona running rockstars. I just met Shannon so I’m not sure how she feels about runDisney but I’m sure we can talk her into running something!
Around mile 5 or 6 I ran into Dr. Amy, also connected through runDisney.
She’s doing the 50 states challenge and I mentioned this race to her- and boom! There she was! Congrats on getting Arizona today, Amy.
We walked a few miles together until she took off on the final 5k.
So back to the icing of the knee. I started this race with a bang. As in me hitting the ground hard when I tripped over a crack in the road.
2 throbbing knees and palms and a spectacular roll later, I got up and kept moving.
The knees hurt but they didn’t seem to impact my pacing. I was pretty solid with pace until I stopped for a porta potty mid race. After that, I just couldn’t get the engine cranked again. This was not my day. No excuses: I just couldn’t do it.
I walked most of the second half of the race, throwing in some running when I did the math and a 4+ hour non-Disney race was looming.
I don’t pretend to be fast, but even with busted knees I didn’t want to come in over 4 hours today when I know a 3:30 or less was the intended goal.
With a sweet downhill final mile I made it across the finish line just before the 4-hour mark. Geesum, that should not have happened. But it is what it is.
I got this:
And then someone handed me this:
And I got some of this:
I’m signing up again next year for sure. The course, the support, and the weather are perfect for this goldilocks of runners. I’m just going to make sure next year I kill it- and not my knees.
See you next year, Phoenix!