Brian Crawford

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Brian Crawford

Running Disney

In a previous post, I mentioned that we’ve been getting into running as a family. It’s a great way to get outside and do some exercise.

One of the ways we’ve been getting into running is by participating in Disney runs. The runDisney program is a series of races throughout the year: 5Ks, 10Ks, half marathons, full marathons, and even a 10 miler that Yvonne and I are going to be running at Hollywood Studios later this year, in early October.

While the Disney races can be costly (January’s Dopey Challenge, which involves running a series of back-to-back races – including the 5K, 10K, half marathon and full marathon – costs over $500), working toward those medals (and the tech shirts you also receive at registration) can be a great motivator. It will get you – and keep you – training for upcoming races months in advance. And considering the rising costs of health care, in my opinion it is money well spent.

The runDisney races

In November of 2013, we participated in some of the Disney races during the Wine and Dine Half Marathon weekend. While none of us ran the actual half, Yvonne and Callum did do the Jingle Jungle 5K (something that they trained up for while living in Spain), and Amelia completed her first ever Mickey Mile at ESPN Wide World of Sports.

Disney Wine and Dine Mickey Mile
Amelia high-fiving Pluto at the finish line of the Wine and Dine Mickey Mile in November.
Jingle Jungle 5K
Yvonne and Callum running the Jingle Jungle 5K last November. They made frequent stops to take pictures with characters.

In January of this year, Disney hosted its annual Marathon Weekend. Amelia completed the Mickey Mile, again at ESPN Wide World of Sports. It was crazy crowded.

Marathon Weekend Mickey Mile
Amelia gearing up for the Marathon Weekend Mickey Mile in January.

The Disney Princess 10K and Half Marathon took place in February. Yvonne ran both of these, completing a challenge called the Glass Slipper Challenge. I was thinking of completing this challenge next February, though Yvonne mentions that I will have to dress up as a princess if I do.

Princess Half Marathon sign at ESPN
Amelia and Yvonne flexing in front of the Princess Half Marathon sign at ESPN Wide World of Sports. Amelia brought Saige, her American Girl doll, with her to the registration.
Getting ready to run the Princess Mickey Mile
Amelia getting ready to run the Mickey Mile at the Princess Half Marathon at Epcot in February.
Princess Mickey Mile at Epcot
Amelia mid-run during the Mickey Mile at Epcot during the Princess Half Marathon weekend. I was there running with her.

Part of completing the Disney races involves registering for each race at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex, on Disney property. During the registration period the complex hosts an exposition, featuring a variety of different booths set up downstairs where different merchants sell mostly running-related stuff. Upstairs, a series of speakers come to speak about running, health, and nutrition.

The runDisney Health and Fitness Expo

One of the most popular of the official Disney speakers is Jeff Galloway, a former Olympian who now promotes interval-based long-distance running (30 seconds running, 30 seconds walking, and so on, until you finish the race). He qualified for this year’s Boston Marathon using a program of 15 second intervals. We got to meet him at the most recent exposition, and it was great to talk to him about running. He’s going to be hosting some of his own races in Atlanta later this year (though we’re not going to be able to make them).

Jeff Galloway at ESPN Wide World of Sports
Meeting one of Yvonne’s running role models – Jeff Galloway.

Our next run

Speaking of runDisney races, Callum and I are going to be running the Expedition Everest Challenge this coming weekend. It’s a race around Disney’s Animal Kingdom, involving a variety of different challenges. We’re looking forward to it – wish us luck!

4 thoughts on “Running Disney

  • Good luck with the expedition everest challenge! we are registered too for the race, but had to back out (and lose our money btw) because our dog had an injury. DOH! Gonna be attempting the full next January, see ya there 🙂

    • Rich – I’m really sorry to hear that you had to back out of the challenge. I was looking forward to seeing you there. Sorry to hear about your dog.

      Definitely let’s hook up next January. Yvonne went ahead and signed up for the Dopey Challenge. That is because she is insane!

      • LOL it may be dopey, but when she is done, she will have a coveted medal that few people will have! WOOT! Wish her the best of luck and success!! we will see ya there!


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