Previously as we reversed the curse:
When we last left off, we had just seen our friends outside of the Grand Floridian. As I mentioned, we were in the zone for the next 6 miles to get through the kind of yucky part of the course (literally around the water treatment facility) and to my favorite part, Animal Kingdom. We were there in no time and man was I pumped.
Dottie Bell was not as excited to see us. We rounded the sidewalks into the park and headed toward Expedition Everest. We decided to wait the 15 minutes to ride the coaster. And, well, this happened. FYI — we might say some naughty words that your uptight boss or your parrot of a child might not need to hear.
TL;DW: Rode the ride, told Mandy that if I dropped my phone on the ride we would tell MB teenagers stole it, Hilary loved it.
After we got off the coaster we grabbed a diet coke and we we were off.
So next on the course was the ESPN Wide World of Sports. You spend about 2 miles running there and then about 4 miles running through the WWOS. A LOT of people and I’m telling you a lot do not under any circumstances like running this portion of the course. I actually love running through WWOS — it’s pretty, there are a lot of things to look at, volunteers are out, and there are real bathrooms. Mentally it IS tough running through the park and seeing people spilling out, miles ahead of you. But we run marathons we’re tough, right?
Wrong this year. Miles 18-20 are usually pretty dark for me. The dark miles. The wheels start to fall off, I walk more, I want to sit. WDW was no different. The dark miles hit really really hard right as we were turning in. I ate some pretzels and tried to go to the bathroom. After our bathroom break Hilary and I both discovered we were super dehydrated. So, we sat on a bench outside the restroom and just relaxed for a few minutes. We really had hustled the last 5 miles to make up time so we needed a little mental and physical break.
Steff — I’m sorry we sat. I think I fibbed and said we didn’t!
After this super attractive bench selfie was taken we popped back up and headed back out with a little teeny tiny pep in our step. As we were getting the last few WWoS miles in we started running into some characters so we took advantage of the opportunity to improve our PR in fun.
I thought this one was so cute.
We said goodbye to our new pals and we were outta there.
Miles 20-22 are again on the out and back on our way to the Hollywood so we knew we would have to keep ourselves occupied. Other than running a marathon. This is also the biggest climbs of the course so we had that to look forward to. On the first hill Mandy, Hilary and I yelled, loudly, all the things we were going to eat after we were done. Other runners around us cheered our choices or added their own which made us very satisfied that everyone participating would be well fed post race.
The second climb featured the little green army men who tell you to stop and give them 20. Hilary gave them three. Like a boss.
From there it was all downhill, literally, into DHS! As we were pulling along side traffic which was honking their horns and waving, we picked up some momentum and were weaving in and around runners. Over my shoulder I hear someone say, “Is that Mandy?” as Mandy bobbed an weaved ahead of me. I turned and it was Brandi and Becky!!
So reminiscent of our first meeting at Wine and Dine in 2013!
We caught up with our girls, heard how their race was going and that they had to get ON A FLIGHT back to HotLanta immediately after the race. What gangsters. With this in mind, I was so happy that we saw them when we did because we would have definitely missed them post race! We said our so longs and turned right into the back stage area of DHS.
Hollywood is great, just like all the other areas are great because of real bathrooms and cheering and the parks and characters. DHS is ESPECIALLY magical because you are literally ALMOST DONE. After you leave it’s all fun course until the until the end. It really is a great mental boost.
We immediately ran into some great characters. Mike and Sully and little Boo from Monster’s Inc were our favs. As I sat in last year’s pic with Mike and Sully it only seemed appropriate this year.
I have never seen little Boo! Yay!
the Incredibles! And the ElastiGirl and Mr. Incredible!
A few more miles and we were out of the park and onto the walkway over to the Boardwalk HALLELUJAH! It gets a stitch crowded here but we kept our intervals and were really trucking. As we were moving in between the Boardwalk area onto the Yacht and Beach club we ran into Genie dressed as a tourist.
y’all. I was so excited about this photo opp.
After we rounded the corner past the resorts we saw the Fairy Godmother who gave us some bibibie bobidie boo in our sneakers to get us to the finish.
And now we’re in Epcot!
I can’t really tell you how amazing it is to go through the last water stop and then to come out into the World Showcase. They have this really bumping music that makes you feel like you’re about to go into battle/beat Jafar/win the Olympics. It’s the theme from the Pirates of the Caribbean. Give it a click and listen to it as we finish the marathon!
it’s a 10 hour loop. you’re welcome.
This music, paired with our unbelievable excitement to see Natalie and Katinka made me almost lose my mind.
We charged up the bridge and as we headed into France we could see them before we could hear them. What beauties! Thank the Lord! We got huge hugs, they got covered in sweat and they were screaming and yelling their faces off. It was amazing.
Then we laid eyes on Belle standing there. I noticed that there was a little girl about to get her picture taken, but our team had already charged.
Hilary was not having it without me.
Natalie and Katinka gave me a huge shove and we got our pic!
sorry not sorry little girl whose vacation/childhood we probably ruined
We said goodbye to our friends and made our way through the World Showcase. As we were chugging along a runner came up beside us and said the most magical thing anyone can say to you during a marathon: Do you want this Grey Goose Slushie?
We did want it. We wanted it a lot.
We split it three ways and laid waste to the tart, grey goosie, slushie goodness.
We ran past Africa, China, Norway and onto Mexico. There was a woman standing by the frozen marg stand HANDING OUT FROZEN MARGS TO RUNNERS. I thought she wanted me to just take a sip. No she said, take it! You deserve it. Thank you perfect stranger, we really did.
we hadn’t just finished a grey goose slushie. we really needed this.
After we downed over half of the marg we CHARGED past the ball, around the front of the park to lay eyes on Megan, celebrating her birthday by cheering for the marathon.
I got to see the sign in action. It was amazing.
We rounded the corner again, out of the park into the backstage area. Finally, the hallelujah choir. And then. And THEN. We saw Donald. At the beginning of the race we all agreed that we should get a selfie with Mickey at the finish. Well Mickey wasn’t there but Donald was. We yelled for Hilary and she was like bitch please. We are this close, we are finishing.
We finished the race, got our medals and cold towels. We were so so proud of ourselves.
The Paul Ryan curse is officially reversed! F YOU PAUL RYAN!
We so slowly made our way back to the race retreat tent where we met up with Nathan and Coach Jeff.
We had a quick bit in the race retreat and headed, slowly to meet our girls for a Mexican feast. On our way we ran into Danielle and Amelia! A ran a sub 4 marathon. On the fourth day of Dopey.
After so many delicious nachos and a margarita and a huge diet coke we decided it was time to get back to the room.
We met up with Patrick and Alyssa at Beaches and Cream for our annual Kitchen Sink birthday meet up.
After we were done with dinner we were going to go get a drink at the Cali Grill. But uh. We were pretty much donezo.
I’ll leave you with this pic of Princess N meeting Princess Merida the next day at the Magic Kingdom.
This weekend was so so redemptive. It was a great weekend filled with so many giggles, so many miles, so many friends, so much joy. I’m so proud of all of us. I would also be lying to you if I said that a lot of my personal joy — aside from being with my friends and running and being at the World — was that was my marathon for the year. I don’t have to train for or run another marathon. Joy and rapture!!
The end. F you Paul Ryan.