Posts Tagged With: corral

Hot Chocolate 15k Race Preview & Expo Recap

This Saturday is the Hot Chocolate 5k & 15k in Dallas. I’m running the 15k. I’ve never run this race series before, but I hope it will be fun!

Since the race is on a Saturday, they had the expo on Thurs-Fri. Not very convenient since I typically work on those days. Not to mention it was a pretty long drive from the burbs to the expo site. And get this…they charged us for parking. What the frisbee?!?

But, of course I still had some fun with it…

Me n my new bestie - Marsha M. And look, I got a free hat!

Me n my new bestie – Marsha M. And look, I got a free hat!

I didn’t realize how big this race is – they say there’s 13,000 runners running! So I went on the first day of the expo to avoid the crowds.

I got my swag bag and bib and then tried to take another silly selfie with an inflatable, but some gal ran up to me and insisted on taking the pic for me. It totally threw me off my goof game…

I was too shocked to do anything but give the shaka sign.

I was too shocked to do anything but give the shaka sign.

For such a big race, the expo itself was pretty small. Maybe 15-20 vendors, I think. But they tried to fun it up with a DJ, bounce houses, and chocolate. I made a quick 6 second video to try and capture the moment.

Anyway, as for the race itself, it starts/ends at Fair Park in Dallas. It’s a historical part of town, home to the Cotton Bowl, concerts, State Fair, performances, festivals and such. It’s not located in the best part of town, but I do enjoy going there. I’ve actually done several races in that area.

After the race with some friends and a giant ferris buehler wheel.

After a race in Fair Park with some friends and a giant ferris buehler wheel.

I’ve taken a look at the course and I’m familiar with a few of the sections. One stretch that sticks out to me is Gaston Rd. We ran that same road during the Mich Ultra 13.1 back in October. It stood out because of the long rolling hills. Hopefully it’s gotten flatter since then.

Stay the course, my friends.

Stay the course, my friends.

And while I haven’t run this race before, plenty of friends have. I was glad to get the scoop from them about the driving/parking/traffic nightmare that it is. I guess 13,000 folks can block up the roads. So some friends and I are going to take the train down. Choo Choo Chew Chocolate.

I’m in corral “I”. Usually I’m in corral 1 or 2. But they told me how it works is the 5k is A-H, and they start first. Corral I is actually the first corral for the 15k. Whew, I didn’t want to be doing too much dodging and weaving!

Once the race starts, I’m not really sure how to pace it. I’ve only done one other 15k – like a year and a half ago. All I remember is that I went out too fast, and that it was wicked hot/humid. You can read the recap HERE.

The only pic I took that day. Say ahhhhhh!

The only pic I took that day. Say ahhhhhh!

Anyway, I look forward to the race! I hope it all goes smoothly and we have some fun! And I can’t wait to get this medal around my neck!

It's a metal chocolate bar. That's one way to get iron in your system.

It’s a metal chocolate bar. That’s one way to get iron in your system.

If you want to follow along during the race, my Twitter is set up for runner tracking to post my splits. You can follow me HERE.

Come back in a few days for the race recap!!!

How bout you? Ever run a Hot Chocolate race? Anyone running this race with me that I should look for? Ever run a 15k before?

-Scott

Categories: expo, fitfluetial, run, Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Half Marathon Recap – Disney Dopey Challenge Day 3

Race 3 of 4 of the Dopey Challenge.  This time it was time for the Donald Duck themed half marathon.  The evening before the race, we prepared by chilling a bit at Downtown Disney.

My sis and I carbo-loading.

My sis and I carbo-loading.

Our sunny set view.

Our sunny set view.

Then came the morning and another 2am wake up call.  By now I was used to it.  I had used up all my pre-race sleep jitters before the first race (5k).  And while I still hadn’t had a full night sleep, at least I got a few hours.  And of course we took our customary pre race photo.

Sis, Me, Mom.

Sis, Me, Mom.

Still wanting to take it easy, so I wore one last costume (as you can tell).  This time it was my PR 214 tech tank with an Alice in Wonderland apron.  My friend (who looks like an elf) lent it to me the day before I left for Florida.

Knee out. Hands on hips.

Knee out. Hands on hips.

She told me she got it at Disney World when she was a little girl…so it’s probably like 50-60 years old (JK – if she read this).  She also lent me the matching dress, but I could no way in Hades get it on.  I tried, but couldn’t get the waist over my broad manly shoulders.  Nearly split it in four.  I guess costumes meant for a 6 year old girl don’t work on me.

I do like how the rabbit is chasing time - just like us runners!

I do like how the rabbit is chasing time – just like us runners!

The apron got quite the few comments and gawks.  One example during the race: a couple bros asked me if I lost a bet – I told them that it was either a result of too much medication, or not quite enough.

I'd be much faster if I ran like a normal person.

I’d be much faster if I ran like a normal person.

I also ran with the GoPro camera.  But I had forgotted to charge it the night before, so I only got a few moments of video recorded during the race.    You can see the fleeting moments here:

As you can see in the video, there was a bit of a let down at the start of our corral.  Now I won’t get into the corral complaints here, as I’m sure the runDisney folks have gotten quite the mouse earful already.  But what I wanted to bring up was that our corral got extra jacked up.  You see, Disney shoots off a pretty nice little fireworks show for each corral start – except for ours.  Something happened when the dude pushed the boom button and we got zilch sky explosions.  Bummer, bro.

But no matter, we were underway!

Follow the yellow brick road...or painted line, as it were.

Follow the yellow brick road…or painted line, as it were.

I ran the whole way with my sis.  We chatted the whole way too, further ensuring that we’d take it easy (in addy to the costumes).

I have to correct my running form.  So does she.

I have to correct my running form. So does she.

We didn’t stop for any characters, but we couldn’t pass up the Cinderella’s Castle photo op (no lines!).

As much as my arms are in the air, I hope I did have BO.

As much as my arms are in the air, I hope I didn’t have B.O.

I was looking forward to this leg of the Dopey.  I had run the Disney Marathon 3 times, but never one of their 13.1 races.  I wanted to know what it was like.

Peace homey.

I think I thought I was in 2nd place here.

But after running it, I can now say that I’m glad I run the fulls.  They didn’t have all the bells and whistles out for the half.  The course only hit up two parks (Magic Kingdom and Epcot).

Half of the most magical place on Earth.

Half of the most magical place on Earth.

The lights of the castle weren’t even on.  The people who run the half really do miss out on all the action of the full – but I guess that’s part of the reward for the people who are more than half crazy???

Catchin flies.  Schwetty shorts.

Catchin flies.

Anyways, it was pretty warm and humid.  So the apron and everything else got nice and sweaty (if Elf reads this – we did wash it after).  I’m really glad we didn’t have this weather for the full!  It was swampy!

Put the guns away already!

Put the guns away already!

Once again, the race started and ended in the Epcot parking lot.  The crowds of supporters were bigger than the day before (10k), which was bigger than the day before (5k).

No mid race selfie for you!  Battery is dead bro!

No mid race selfie for you! Battery is dead bro!

But once again, I was trying to go for a personal worst (PW).  This was the 3rd of 4 legs of the Dopey Challenge and the 1st of 2 legs of the Goofy.  And once again I succeeded!

I must've run the entire way with my hands in the air.  Sheesh.

I must’ve run the entire way with my hands in the air. Sheesh.

We finished at 2 hrs 17 mins.  A near 30 minutes slower than my previous half (1:48).  Just a nice easy medium-long run.

And at the finish, I did a little high step dance, but I couldn’t get the video for y’all, but you can kind of tell from the pics.

Sideways high steppin.

Sideways high steppin.

Anyways, we enjoyed the journey and Disney does make a fine race medal!

Thumbs up, finally arms down.

Thumbs up, finally arms down.

So now we’re 3 races down, with just one to go – the full 26.2 mile marathon!

Family reunion time.

Family reunion time.

The only scary thing was that people started to point out that even though we’d finished 3/4 races, we hadn’t yet reached halfway of the total mileage!!!!!  We wouldn’t reach that until a few miles into the full.  I wish nobody had pointed that out.

You can lick the medals if you want.  One of the benefits.

You can lick the medals if you want. One of the benefits.

So there you go.  We are now 1/2 Goofy and 3/4 Dopey.  One (big) race to go to complete the challenges!!!

***Side note – I saw a really funny race shirt that day – it read on the back, “Is this the line for Space Mountain?”  Bwhaha!****

If you missed the previous recaps, here’s the ones for the Expo, 5k, and 10k.

How bout y’all?  Ever cross dress in an ill-fitting outfit for a race?  Can you suggest a new mid-race pose other and arms up?  Should we had made fireworks sound effects when their real ones malfunctioned?

Categories: Race Recaps | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 34 Comments

10k Recap – Disney Dopey Challenge Day 2

Day 2 of the inaugural Dopey Challenge was the inaugural Minnie Mouse 10k.  Day 1 was the 5k Family Fun Run.  This race was warm and humid.  And still early.  Yet another 2 am wake up call for a 5:30 am start.  It was also much more packed and energetic than the 5k.  There were a lot more people this morning.  A lot more buzz.

My best Mickey pose

My best Mickey pose

For this race, I was again rockin’ an Ohio University shirt.  My costume consisted of my over-sized Disney cartoon gloves, and my customized Mickey Mouse ears.

Sis, Mom, Me B4 da race.

Sis, Mom, Me B4 da race.

To help keep the ears on, I wore the GoPro camera on my head with a head strap that held the hat in place.  The only issue was that it was hard to tell if the camera was recording or not.  The solution was to hold my hand in front of it to see if I saw the reflection of the red blinking light…or ask one of the volunteers if it was blinking.

Hitting record on the GoPro.

Hitting record on the GoPro.

Same corral as the 5k —> A.  The course once again started and ended in the Epcot parking lot.  Truth be told, the first few miles were kind of boring.  Actually, a lot boring.  It immediately took us out on the roads that link the parks within Disney World.  Dark.  Quiet.  Sure, there were a few attractions (characters, deejays, etc.) placed along this stretch, but not much.

The 10k is the RED line.

The 10k is the RED line.

Plus, I got to see first hand the corral start separation that everyone was complaining about after day 1.  I got to see it because the course started with about a mile out and back on the road.  I kept watching the road on the way back looking for corral B.  It never seemed to come.  Not sure why they held them so long.  There was plenty of room on the roads.  As you can see from the highlights from my head mounted video camera:

Anyway, once the course finally got us into Epcot, it livened up.  It also took us around the Boardwalk Resort.  That was pretty cool too.  It’s so weird being there so early in the morning, and I’m sure we woke up a few tourists staying in the hotels there, but it was eerily cool.

Running and waving. Talented.

Running and waving and sweating. Talented.

The final stretch took us back through Epcot before finishing back at the parking lot near where we started.

Running.

Running and smiling.

Once again, I tried to take it easy.  My last 10k I finished in 46:23.  This one I came across in 1:04:28.  Once again, I reached my goal of finishing with a personal worst (PW)!!!  Mission “Take It Easy Races 1 Thru 3” successful so far!

I have weird running form.

I have weird running form.

Again, I ran the entire way, as I wanted to complete the Dopey Challenge by actually running all 4 races – no matter how slow I took the first few.

I really need to stop running like that.

I really need to stop running like that.

Again, I was trying to relax, enjoy the run, and not exert myself too much.  This was all in design to be able to have something in the tank for the 26.2 in just a couple days.

Moments before I pounced on Snow White.

Moments before I pounced on Snow White.

At the finish, I decided to do something other than just run over it – so I did a little heel click hop!

Heel click wide shot.

Heel click wide shot.

Heel click close up.

Heel click close up.

The Minnie medal was pretty cool too. I do love getting new hardware!  Bling Bling Race Bling!

Yup yup.

Medal 2 of 6 got son!

And now we were done with 2/4 races.  9.3 miles down, 39.3 to go!  The 39.3 is the Half and Full marathons back to back – they call that the Goofy Challenge.  So all that’s left for me to get Dopey is to be Goofy.

Next up I’ll recap the Half Marathon.  If you missed my recaps of the Expo and/or 5k,  you can see them HERE and HERE respectively.

How bout you?  How was your last 10k run or race?  Ever run with a camera?  Ever do anything special at a finish line?

Categories: Race Recaps | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 45 Comments

Disney Marathon 2014 – New Corrals

It’s only a few more sleeps until the Disney Dopey Challenge!  And the other day I shared some tips for running at Disney World.  Today I have some new info about the updated corral system.

Coming soon...

Coming soon…

Over on the RunDisney Facebook page, I noticed some trolls have been trolling.  I’m not used to runners behaving that way because when you exercise you release endorphins, which make you happy, and happy people don’t troll people.

They’re complaining about their new corral placement.  But like most people on the internet, they are making much ado about nothing, because they failed to edumacate themselves before spouting off.

As you may know, corrals are set up for your race pace.  The closer your corral is to the start line, the faster a runner you are.  This is a very good thing for races to do.  Imagine if it were reversed and walkers were at the front, there would be a lot of collisions from the faster runners trying to get around people.

In previous years the Disney Marathon only had like 7 or 8 corrals.  Which meant that there were thousands of people in each and every one.  I have always been in Corral B.  But this year I’m in Corral F.  Here’s the corrals for the Marathon…

Revised corrals with corresponding marathon pace.

Revised corrals with corresponding marathon pace. Click to enlarge.

Now if you’re like me, and used to being in the 2nd corral, at first glance it’s tempting to get upset at suddenly being in corral 6.  Hence the trolling.

But if they took the time to look, they’d see they are still in a corral with their pace peers.  They’d also see that the corrals are MUCH smaller this year.  Some have less than 100 people in them!!!!

I feel bad for the volunteers at the Expo, I know they’re going to get unedumacated people complaining about their corral placement.  And the website says there will be NO corral changes at the Expo!!!

I couldn’t find how long the start delays are for each corral, but I’m guessing it’s not more than a minute or two.

In years past they’ve shot off fireworks for each corral start, I’m curious to see if they’ll do that again this year!  That’s a buttload of fireworks they’ll be shooting for all those corrals!

Kaboomo!

Kaboomo!

If you’re running Disney this year, don’t be dismayed by the new corrals.  It’s all for the best!

How bout you?  Ever been in a big race with no corrals?  Ever had to change corrals.  Have you ever been a troll?

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 40 Comments

Run Disney Tip: Wakey Wakey Early Early!

Today is a rest day in my Disney Dopey Challenge Training.  It’s really weird having a rest day in the middle of the week.  It was tempting to go to the gym, but I’m going to stick to the schedule as I know what’s coming the next 4 days.

Anyway, I thought I’d give some tips today about running a race at Disney World.  Whether you’re running this year, or at some point in the future, I hope this helps.

Me and my sis running this past year's Disney Marathon.  Yup, it starts way before sunup.

Me and my sis running this past year’s Disney Marathon. Yup, it starts way before sunup.

I’ve run the marathon 3 times, so I kind of know what to expect.  First off, you must get there early.  And by early, I mean like 2:00 am alarm clock early.  They usually have to close some of the roads to stage the races, so if you don’t get there early, you could be stuck in traffic and risk missing the start.  This is from their website…

“…there will be SIGNIFICANT DELAYS starting at 3:30 a.m. due to road closures…Roads begin to close as early as 11:00 p.m. on the evenings before the Half Marathon and Marathon. GPS devices or other sources will be inaccurate due to road closures.”

So yeah, when we drive to the start line, we get there by 3:00 am-ish.  The races don’t start until 5:30 am, so you’ve got some time to chill.  Luckily they have live music, characters, etc. to keep you entertained.  Though it’s kind of surreal that early in the morning to see all that.

The boy and me and my sis before the 2013 Disney Marathon.  It was early.

The boy and me and my sis before the 2013 Disney Marathon. It was early.

If you take a bus from a resort (like we did this past year), you have a little more wiggle time, but not much.  And keep in mind that where they drop you off, you still have a considerable distance to walk to the staging area.  More time on your feet = not what you really need.

Now, once you’re at the staging area, I recommend you stay there as long as you can.  They will try to encourage you over and over to make your way to the corrals, but I prefer to lay there and chill.

Once time to go to the corral, know that you will be walking about a mile, shoulder to shoulder with people.  From their website…

“You must be in your corral at the start line by 5:00 a.m. or you will not be allowed to start. Please note, it takes 20 minutes to walk from the Family Reunion area (Epcot® Wonder Lot) to the start line.”

If you’re not expecting that, it can be kind of disheartening.  You’re already worried about saving your legs, and here they have you adding a mile to your race!  But now that you know, I like to use this as my warm up.  Take it easy on the walk, and try to get loose while doing so.

After the death march I like to do my dynamic warm up before getting into the corral.  The port-a-potties are few at the corrals, so expect to go in the adjacent wooded areas!  All they while they have entertainment going on. They do a sort of live morning show there where they have celebrities and such giving you encouragement – all broadcast on some big screens.

All that’s left is to start the race…

I jumped really high to take this photo.  Or I stole it, can't remember.

I jumped really high to take this photo. Or I stole it, can’t remember.

I can’t stress enough to get there early.  Last year I got the chance to watch my mom run the Half Marathon.  You wouldn’t believe how many runners were running everywhere to try and get to the start.  We even set up at mile 4, and there were people trying to get on the monorail to get to the start while still getting dressed.  It was crazy!  So get there early folks!

Are you running any Disney races this year, or in the future?  How early do you get to the start line for a race?

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Flying Pirate Half Marathon Preview

As  you may be able to tell from the name of this blog, I kind of like pirates.  I’m not one of those people who dress up like them year round or decorate my house like a pirate ship, but I do like them.  As you can also tell, I like to run too.  So when I saw the Flying Pirate Half Marathon, I had to register.

It takes place on the Outer Banks in North Carolina.  The Outer Banks are basically a string of long skinny islands just off the coast.  Made famous by the Wright Brothers flight at Kitty Hawk and as a hideout for many pirates including Edward Teach – Blackbeard.  In fact, it’s where Blackbeard was killed.  So the name for this race is a combo of the flight and pirate histories.

A flying pirate would be a very dangerous thing indeed!

A flying pirate would be a very dangerous thing indeed!

The course is a point to point one.  I’m assuming it’s going to be mostly flat since we’ll be at sea level.  Hopefully we won’t have to go over any sand dunes!  The course is also mostly straight…no major turn arounds or anything.  And as of today, the weather is supposed be in the 50’s.  It’s also supposed to be low wind and low humidity.  Man, I hope that’s all true – if so, could make for a chance to PR.  We’ll see though, as I’m not in top endurance shape at the moment.

The course also runs right through Kitty Hawk and past the monument to the Wright Bros. “first” flight.  I put first in quotes because my father doesn’t believe it was the first time they flew.  You see, we are from Ohio, where the Wright Brahs are from.  My dad is convinced that they did test flights there before taking the plane to NC for the official flight.  So sit on that North Crackalacka!  Makes sense, but it could just be Ohio pride.

After the race, there’s supposed to be a big party!  My sis is also running this with me and one of my bestest friends, who lives in Raleigh, will be there too.  So here’s how I see it:  Beaches, Running, Pirates, Fams, Friends,  Parties, Cool Medals….What could be better???

Oh, and get this, they put me in Corral A:

I'm not elite, but I can at least start out with them.

I’m usually in Corral B, so this is a first.  And I’ve never had a bib number that low.  Coolio.

All in all, I’m hoping this will be a really fun race with lots of good scenery and good times.  I don’t know many of the specifics about the course or event set up as I live about 1,200 miles away, but I’ll give a full recap when I get home next week.  Until then, keep it fresh!

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