Remembering the First Marathon

Today marked another running of the Walt Disney World Marathon. Thanks to Facebook’s Memories feature, I’ve been flooded with reminders throughout the week from my own time in Orlando. And thanks to RunDisney’s Instagram account, I found myself looking at pictures of the days’ events and wishing I could be there to run it, again.


The funny thing is that, before Disney, I’d never had any desire a marathon. Matter of fact, I remember telling anyone who’d listen that I’d never run a marathon (why TF would I run a distance that killed a teenager?). And then my oldest sister picked up running…and decided she wanted to run a marathon. So of course, my other sister (who ran the New York City Marathon in 2003) and I got roped into going on this journey. If it’d been anybody else, I probably wouldn’t laughed in their face.  (It’s amazing what you end up doing for family, right?) But, I agreed and took some comfort in the knowledge the insanity is hereditary.


Most of my training leading up to the race is a blur. But, so much of the race, itself, is still fresh in my brain. Disney was a race unlike anything else I’d run up to that point or since then. To their credit, Disney goes out of their way to make this a fun marathon, and I had my share of fun along the course. (After all, what other race is going to give me the chance to stop and ride a rollercoaster halfway through the race?) And while I may have hated the world from mile 18 to mile 25, nothing topped the joy and satisfaction of crossing that finish line!


Disney made me challenge myself as a runner in a way I hadn’t before. Every step of training, and every step of the race made me realize I was capable of more than I could’ve imagined before the race (true story: I remember tearing up somewhere after mile 20 when I realized I was actually going to finish the race, after all). Disney made me a marathoner, and I’m looking forward to the day when I get to run Disney, again.

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