So I think I have officially done something stupid. I have now signed up for a total of three marathons within the next year without actually running one. I also still have some lingering pain in my back and foot that just refuses to go away when I keep running on it. This could be a huge waste of money but I know if I didn’t register for this race and really try to make it work, I would regret it for probably my whole life. What race did I sign up for now?
Well… the 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon, of course!
To give you the full picture of why this race is particularly important to me, I have to back track to about 2004…I’ve eluded to this in the past but this is the full scoop!
The first time I ever got to go to DisneyWorld, I was 19 years old. Yes, I am fully aware of the fact that I am way too old for WDW but to be quite frank, I don’t care what you think. I love and will also love anything Disney. When I was planning our family vacation to WDW, I came across an article about the WDW marathon. At this point I had never even run one mile and was absolutely positive that I COULD NOT run but this marathon stuck in my head and I dreamed of being able to run it and cross that finish line someday. That following summer (2005), I started “running.” I don’t actually think I told anyone I was running for a while because I didn’t really view what I was doing as running but I would leave to go on a walk and then during the course of that walk, would run for a minute or two (I honestly don’t remember if it was that long… I remember feeling really badass but in truth I know it was probably not as hardcore as I told myself) I don’t fully remember how long I went with this little spurts of running thing but I know by 2006, I would actually run for 2 miles or so at a time. I don’t know if I was consciously thinking of running a marathon yet at this point but the seed was planted in my head.
A few years later (2009-1010), I started to really feel the urge to train for a marathon. It was something I really wanted to cross off my bucket list before I was 25. Needless to say, this has yet to happen and 25 was a few years ago… but anyways, to make a long (boring) story short, I signed up for a marathon in 2010, switched to the half, loved that distance, ran a few, decided I was ready to tackle a full but was terrified to do so. That brings us to Dec 2011. At that time, Sister and I were deep into half marathon training for the WDW Half in January 2012 but I just couldn’t get excited about it because it was not the “full” and I felt like I would probably never be a marathoner… so after one particular grumpy run in December, Sister convinced me to sign up for my first full marathon and I have been in training ever since. Yes, this still was not going to be THE marathon I had always dreamed about running but it was still going to be A marathon and that calmed my mind for the time being.
Then WDW Marathon Weekend 2012 came and I was SO jealous of everyone I saw with their “Marathon” gear and wanted that damn Mickey Mouse medal SO BAD! But I knew it was not yet time… So Sister and I ran the Half and got our Donald Medals aka Bling (which I think actually looked cooler than the Mickey Heads anyways) and had a great time but I was still Bitter. I was bitter about the fact that I did not get to run Sunday…..By Monday or Tuesday of that weekend, Sister and I started talking about the 2013 Full… we went back and forth a few times and Sister talked all “I’m never running again” there for a while but then we just couldn’t shake it.
Last week, the emails started rolling in “Registration Opens Tomorrow”, “Registration is Open”, “Exciting Improvements for the 20th Anniversary Marathon Weekend”, etc., etc. And we could no longer deny that come hell or high water, we were going to sign up for this marathon…
THE Marathon. The 26.2 miles I have been longing to run since 2004.
And it’s now official. 1.13.13 I will (hopefully) be running a race I have been thinking about and dreaming about for years. Almost a decade really. To say I am excited is the biggest understatement of the year!
But I am also fully aware of the fact that I need to be careful. I need to take a break after May 20th and heal up and do as much as I can to listen to my body while still training to run these distances. I am fully aware that something might happen between now and then that prevents my running this race but I am going to do everything in my power to make this happen. I am going to pursue this dream… 20th Anniversary Mickey Mouse Medal! – I’m coming for you!
All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.