Friday morning, Roswell and I boarded our very early flight and headed off to LAX, ready for an amazing weekend of races and part two of our Coast to Coast Challenge (see part one the Dopey Challenge here). I was a bit weary of the weather forecast, namely that it was going to be very hot – runDisney had even sent out a weather advisory. Mind you, the last two runDisney races we participated in also had weather advisories: WDW Half marathon (cancelled due to storms) and WDW Marathon (extreme cold). So I found it very fitting that this weekend would also have a weather advisory thanks to the heat forecasted.
Anyway, our flight was uneventful (I watched Hidden Figures – so good! – and rewatched Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them) and before we knew it we’d arrived in Los Angeles. We took a car to our hotel where we dropped off our bags since it was too early to check in. From there, we headed straight to the expo.
We waited in the merchandise line first since I had my eyes on the two tanks for the half marathon and the challenge and knew I was already behind one day of the expo. They ended up opening early and I grabbed my tanks (the last challenge one I could find anywhere!) and a few other items. We were out of the merch area before noon! #winning
We quickly made our way down to bib pickup and took care of that. With the previous theft of bibs, I paid close attention to what the people on the other side of the table were (or weren’t) doing; but I was glad to see that they asked for my ID and hopeful that all of the staff were following the procedures (though, apparently they were not).
After bib pick up, Roswell and I went our separate ways as he wanted to visit a few breweries and I wanted to get straight into the parks. However, after our early morning, travel and the heat, I spent a lot of time trying to find shade and sitting down. Roswell and I met for dinner at the Pizza Press and headed back to our hotel early to get ready for the morning. Knowing our trip was so short and that a 5AM west coast race time would actually be 8AM to our bodies, we wanted to stick as close to the East coast time as we could. So we got our stuff ready and were ready to pass out at 7PM (10PM to our bodies).
At 2:45AM, I was wide awake and ready to head to the race! With the Monsters Inc/Monsters University theme for the 10K, I knew I wanted to think beyond Sulley, Mike and Boo for my costume. This is one of my FAVORITE costumes I’ve made – George Sanderson, though you might remember him from code 2319!
We hung out around the starting area for a bit, but fairly early they started to encourage us to move to our corrals (4:15?). I was in Corral G for the 10K and Roswell was all the way up in A.
Since Roswell was so close to the start, he was already half way through the race before I even started.
Around 5:30, the G corral toed the line and set off for 6.2 magical miles. I was looking forward to spending so much of the race inside the parks, since comparatively at Disney World you spend about 1 mile inside the parks with much of the longer races spent on the highways between the parks.
runDisney experienced some backlash after the Tink half in May about the lack of character stops during the 5K that weekend. I have to say that I was blown away by the number of character stops and just overall theming of the race. Several different areas during the race had projections (like the MU one above) and there were a ton of cast members out cheering us on!
CarsLand is always so pretty so the opportunity to see it lit up was amazing. I spent most of the first mile running straight through, although I had planned on using a 2:1 run walk interval. I wanted to make sure that I built up some cushion so I could stop and take pictures in the park and still have enough energy in the tank to finish strong and ready for the half marathon the next day.
I had to stop and take photos of Mickey’s Fun Wheel and the World of Color fountains! I also tried to stop by the Cove Bar, but sadly found that they were closed 😂.
Around this time, Roswell was finishing up his race with a strong push to the finish! Meanwhile, I was still taking photos with Mickey’s Fun Wheel – hey look!
Okay, okay – I was ready to head to Disneyland so I took off down Hollywood Boulevard. You can see another one of those projections I talked about earlier on the sky backdrop below.
In the tunnel on the way to Disneyland, there were CDA agents so you know I had to stop and take a photo with them! 2319! (You can also see how sweaty I am from the humidity!)
As we entered Disneyland, I stopped to pose with the Monsters Inc M.
Running through the castle is always a highlight of runDisney races.
I find these photos particularly funny because it looks like I really have something I need to say!
And then I was crossing the finish line!
Overall, I really enjoyed the race. I felt there were were definitely some areas backstage and in the park that were VERY dark with only rope lights along the ground to see. But the water stops were plentiful and I had a great race experience. I was disappointed with the medals when I first saw them, simply because I was expected a Disneyland themed race not a Pixar themed race. However, after I accepted them and embraced them, I do think the medals are pretty cute and I loved the quotes on the back of each of the medals.
After the race, Roswell and I spent the morning in California Adventure, celebrated with drinks at Trader Sam’s (my new favorite place) and finished with dinner at Carnation Cafe in Disneyland.