Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016

The bling ;p

The bling ;p

Where do I begin? The whole race weekend was everything I expected and more! The fun part with the Tinker Bell Half  Marathon is that they’ve had it fall on Mother’s Day Weekend the last couple of years and with the 2017 dates already up, it looks like Disney will continue the trend. It makes the race weekend so much more special! As I mentioned in earlier posts, I received the half marathon registration as a Christmas Gift! So it was one of the last races open for the weekend. The other races include a 5k, 10k, the Pixie Dust Challenge (10k & half) as well the kids races. Since I really wanted to experience the whole weekend, I volunteered the first two days. Which I’m really glad I did! I love being able to give back to my community when I have the time, being a Mommy it’s not always that easy and with this race I was able to help MOMS Orange County. By volunteering it allowed me to appreciate everyone’s handwork and what goes into a race. The first day I worked with participate package pick-up and on the second day I helped with the Neverland 5k “finish line” handing out medals. Both days were crazy hours (it’s a Disney run ;p) and I met some awesome people from all over the nation!

Friday evening into Saturday, I took a break and stretched a whole lot. I had my form roller going on rotation. I wanted to make sure my IT bands were stretched and ready for 13.1 miles! I had my last runs prior to the race on Tuesday and Wednesday, which were both under 10 miles. So I was confident in my training schedule, the only thing I wasn’t sure about is my pelvis and loosening ligaments. At 24 weeks pregnant, I’ve had my ups and downs with pressure and slight discomfort but nothing that kept me from running. It just doesn’t allow me to keep a consistent pace. It’s funny because all the runs I had up until this race really prepped me for the miles mentally, the idea of running 13.1 miles didn’t scare me at all. I was really excited to brave the Parks and cool streets of Anaheim. The non-pregnant inner Heidi just wanted a decent time. I knew I wasn’t running for time anymore but for the commitment and promise I made to myself when I asked for the runDisney gift in December.

Crossing the finish line =)

Crossing the finish line =)

Sunday was race day and I had my alarm set for 3 AM. I’m not too far from the Parks so, I wanted to leave by 4 AM as the race had a 5:30 AM start time. The one thing I knew I wasn’t going to do is start at that time as corral placement put me back about 20 minutes later. In order to get a better corral placement, I would have had to submit a time from a 10k or more run before Feb 5th which I didn’t have at the time =( Believe me though, I did try after the deadline and had those times all printed out to see what information could do but oh wells, it all worked out because I really didn’t know if I could keep the paces I had during my previous runs in March. Another plus is Disney Runs aren’t meant to be a PR race. No matter what corral you start in, there are so many narrow areas especially when entering the Parks where there’s really nothing you can do but power walk. Also, there is fun photo stations for runners to stop at and take pictures with characters. It’s really meant to be a fun run half marathon, if that makes sense..lol. Mav and Baby Baby carpooled with me to the run as they were my ChEAR SQUAD! It was awesome because Mav found some cool spots to watch me run also if you purchase a ChEAR SQUAD package, they have areas for your squad to go in and around the Parks to cheer on their runner. Since I had a tracker, Mav had mile to mile updates on my whereabouts….he loved this! Once the race started, I was feeling good… the course was smooth and the first 5k set you running on the overpass and through the parks. As I mentioned this is where things slowed down and made me a bit uncomfortable with my pace. I wanted to maintain around a 10 minute mile so I kept myself around 9:15-9:45 to make room for those “power walk” areas. Out of the parks, you were on the streets of Anaheim. Hitting mile 6, mentally I was feeling great. I was hydrated and my focus was set but this is when the pelvic pressure started to chime in. It wasn’t terrible but enough to make me rethink my pace calculation. I tried a few different things to see if I could slow down however, I would have had to either keep my pace or walk the rest of the course. There was no way I was going to walk 7 miles so I just stayed positive and kept an eye for pressure to pain. By the time I made it to Historic Anaheim and passing the Rinks, I loved the energy of different charities and fans that came out to cheer, it  got me excited and allowed me to stay focused on how important this race has been for me the last 6 months. Mile 9 – 12 was a blur, I had that runner’s high and the miles came easy as I was getting close to finishing. The last mile I was able to pick up my pace and buddied up with some runners near by who we kept reminding each other, “we got this.” (sometimes I run and speak out loud, hahaha.) Before I knew it, I was rounding the mile 13 mark at Downtown Disney and crossing the finish line! I know I sound so cliche but, it’s really the best feeling in the world! I ended up finishing at 2:13:04 and kept my promise of maintaining a 10 minute pace…which I can’t complain because that isn’t terrible for my first half marathon let alone being 24 weeks pregnant! The medal was the icing on the cake but really this run meant so much to me and reuniting with Mav and Baby Baby in the Friends & Family area made my morning.

Not too shabby for my first half marathon & 24 weeks pregnant

Not too shabby for my first half marathon & 24 weeks pregnant

After the run as any Disnerd would want to do, I spent some time in the Parks with my boys. Overall, my Mother’s Day was made by 10 AM, lol. Even though we still had a day planned ahead of us. I really enjoyed this run and plan to run it again next year. Mav mentioned he would love to do the 5k as a family and come up with  costumes, which really surprised me. Since it’s not a timed run…I was like, “Hey, let’s do it! We’ll just need a sitter for Little Little and to sign up a lot earlier ;p” I’m all for making a new Mother’s Day tradition that involves a weekend versus a day ;p Signing up for this run motivated me to work on training towards running a marathon and now with completion of my first half marathon I feel comfortable with my decision to run my first Marathon in January of 2017 and plan to run another in May. While the idea of 13.1 miles doesn’t scare me at all, the idea of 26.2 does…I have a lot of training to do after Little Little. One run at time but I’m really looking forward to 2017!

Angels 5k & Fun Run

Angels 5k & Fun Run

Angels 5k & Fun Run

I love my 5ks! Especially after those trail runs, lol. They are bittersweet; the first mile is a breeze, the second I’m debating if I’m going to pick up my pace or die, and the third goes by so fast I don’t even realize I just past the finish line! Well, that’s the way I see my 5ks =) My most recent Angels 5k & Fun Run had to be by far my favorite run and course. I wouldn’t think at 20 weeks pregnant I would say that.

Post Run "bump" Pic!

Post Run “bump” Pic!

The event itself along with the charities the race supported was enough to get me to register, let alone it was at Angel Stadium! Go Angels! I did study the course a few days before the race, not like this always helps as the course could change but it at least gives me an idea of where I’m going.  Being pregnant (I forget sometimes) I wasn’t expecting to get a good time. This run surprised me though I did manage to maintain a 8 minute mile. The course was a nice flat surface with a slight dip when you ran through the dugout near the end of mile 3 inside Angel Stadium. I think I’m still in “awe” that I wasn’t running uphill, hahaha. The weather was calling for rain but started just after we finished the race. This run reminded me a lot of the OC Fair Run; awesome vendors,  great location and a whole lot of fun. I know I’ll be registering again for this run next year, this time with a double BOB ;p

Not to shabby for 20 weeks pregnant! I'll take it =)

Not to shabby for 20 weeks pregnant! I’ll take it =)