the first part of the glass slipper challenge was a 10k race through epcot the day before the half marathon. i debated for a long time what my strategy would be for the 10k and i ultimately decided to give it my best shot to have a "fast" race and see what could happen.
what i didn't anticipate, prior to getting to disney, was running the race in brand new running shoes. i will write a post that elaborates on this, but basically i went to the race expo, bought a new pair of hokas - which i've never, ever run in before - and decided to race in them. i don't always make the smartest decisions, but don't ever say i'm not willing to take risks!
anyway, after a successful one mile test run in the hokas the day before, i decided to give them a go for the 10k.
|taking a selfie with the start line in the back|
i went to this race as a minimalist; no bag, no warm up clothes or clothes to change into. just me, my accelerade and a whole lot of optimism. i got to the race way too early, in my opinion, and waited around for a good while; sitting on wet benches, waiting in line for porta potties, pacing around... i'm not keen on waiting, so it would have been nice to have race retreat that morning, but my world didn't end without it.
what made me really happy was being in the first corral for the 10k. this meant i got to start right away - no way for me to get too anxious once trapped in the corrals! to start this race, they had a lone trumpeter play the star spangled banner. it was haunting and beautiful all at the same time. i did have tears welling up in my eyes and really did savor that beautiful moment. i liked it a lot better than having someone single the anthem, actually.
with a wave of her magic wand, the fairy godmother sent us off and on our way through the 10k course! the course was basically a giant loop around epcot, into the back lot of epcot, through half the world showcase, around the nearby hotels/boardwalk, and then back through epcot to the parking lot. i have to admit that i was really disappointed in the first half of this race. it was mostly all highway with very little entertainment or character action. less than a half mile into the race, you ran under an overpass where elsa (from frozen) waved at you and disney snow fell down. disney snow = foam, so while it was fun being the first group to go through the snow fall, i can't imagine how slippery it might have been for runners in later corrals!
|the view of the start line from corral a|
the course for me didn't get interesting until we got into epcot, and then everything just flew by. i was really in a good groove at this point so i felt like i couldn't take everything in as i ran by. the nice thing about being in corral a was that there was hardly any lines for character pictures. this made it so tempting to stop, but i was in a groove and i wanted to keep running. i did almost stop for jiminy cricket through - i've never seen him before! it felt like a rare disney sighting ;)
|i decided to enjoy myself and be silly for photos....|
my feet had growing pains in my new shoes, but i was pleasantly surprised that the growing pains were minimal - meaning that i felt i made the right decision using the new shoes for this race. i could tell my gait was a little off getting used to them, but i felt throughout the race that i was still able to manage a good pace so i didn't worry much.
it was humid. super humid. i was a sweaty mess, but thats florida for ya. by the time i got to the finish, i was really thirsty, but i was also pleasantly pleased at how adequately fueled i was for this race. my steak dinner the night before, and the accelerade in the morning was the right amount of fuel for the 10k. love it when i get that equation right! the only rough part was running around the boardwalk and smelling the bacon that was starting to cook. oy! nothing worse than smelling bacon on a run! i should mention that the boardwalk was also where a few spectators had bravely gotten up to cheer for us. i tried to thank all of them as i ran by - just them being there was a huge adrenaline kick for me.
i pushed to give a strong kick at the end and finished on a good note. i felt surprisingly good this race and it totally boosted my confidence going into the half marathon. i think you can tell just how good i felt by looking at the pictures that followed the race finish...
|... more silliness ensues ...|
|... and now i'm just being weird|
so i obviously felt good coming out of this, which was just what i needed with the half marathon the next day. although this race did make me more aware of the fact that i was going to run more than double that distance the next day ... either way, it all worked out in the end! no new pr here, but damn close to my 10k time in november, which makes me feel encouraged that i will be able to gain my speed edge back once i start training again in spring.
i liked this race, even though i was disappointed about the first half of it. i felt that once you got into epcot, the course just flew by, so it would be a race i'd consider doing again if i had the opportunity! i will say the best moment was elsa and the fake snow floating on all the runners - my favorite moment out of the two races!
|sitting with my medal, pool side, post race!|