So what exactly am I talking about? Recovery at Disney World can make for a different experience than most races. In my mind, Disney World is just about the perfect place to recover from a race. With all of the food options and being in a place where you are encouraged to walk, it makes recovery in Disney a near perfect experience. My suggestion for after the race is simple…clean up, get out of your room, get fed, get walking and celebrate. It is simple.
However, having said that I have a handful of attractions for a Trey’s Top 5 that are my favorite attractions to partake in after running a race. Here is what this list is not...It is not just a list of my favorite attractions but it is a list of ones after a race. Here we go…
#5: Living with the Land (Epcot)
Sure its not a thrill ride and maybe not a must see, but after running a marathon or 13.1 I enjoy getting on this slow boat ride. You don’t have to bend over or use much effort to get on or off the ride. It is a nice length and I love the location in the area of Sunshine Seasons which is a great place to grab a bite.
#4: The Great Movie Ride (Hollywood Studios)
This would be higher on the list if the benches were cushioned! This fits the bill of the first one. This is a ride where it gives you about 15-20 minutes to sit and enjoy and relax. The seats don’t take effort to get in and out of. It is also just around the corner from some amazing snacks we talked about last week. In fact, 3 amazing snacks are within a 2 minute walk.
#3: Spaceship Earth (Epcot)
This is a nice easy, slow moving attraction that gives you about 18-20 minutes off your feet. It is one of the most relaxing rides in Disney World for me. Once again, the vehicles are easy to get in and out of.
#2: Haunted Mansion (Magic Kingdom)
This is usually my all-time favorite attraction, but for marathon weekend this does get bumped for #2. The standards are there for this ride for me. It is dark, temperature controlled; ease of getting in and out and a Sleepy Hollow snack is just around the corner. This is a no-brainer for me on marathon weekend.
#1: People Mover (Magic Kingdom)
What puts this one over the top is the ability to ride over and over again and not have to deal with long lines. It has everything else I look for in a ride after the marathon plus no long lines…unless you all get in my way! It is a nice relaxing, slow moving ride that gives you a nice scenic ride through Tomorrowland in the Magic Kingdom. Enjoy!
Not making my list but I might ride anyway, Space Mountain! Try getting in and out of that vehicle after a race!
So back to the course..
The last time we left on, we were on World Drive and we just hit mile marker #22.
As you continue down World Drive you will begin to see your exit off World Drive and onto E. Buena Vista Drive. Exit does mean an off ramp which does mean a little bit of a hill. At mile 22 any bit of a hill means a massive hill! As you make your way off of World Drive you also have a chance to grab some hydration. You will take a right once you get to Buena Vista and you will only be on this road for a moment. Something that always strikes me on this stretch is the number of cups on the side of the road. You are late in the race and this is a stretch where we all get a drink or two. There are a massive number of empty cups next to the curb. That image always sticks with me.
You will quickly take a right and into a backstage area of Hollywood Studios. You will enter in a backstage area close to the Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. For those of us who would like to have a little sugar rush there is usually a nice reward backstage. Soon after you enter in Hollywood Studios you will hit mile marker #23!
A big part of race strategy at this point is 2 parts. First, use the momentum. The energy will begin to grow and grow and so will the crowds. Use that energy to get you to the finish. If you have something left, now is the time to use it. You can’t take it with you. Second, is enjoy the moment. The final few miles of this race will be over before you know it. Soak it in and make memories. Thank the crowd and the volunteers. Smile at others, it will make you feel better. I promise it helps. This is a great moment, enjoy every step no matter whether it hurts or not.
Mile #24- For some reason as I run through Hollywood Studios I never remember where I run. Maybe I am so tired or in so much pain I don’t really know what happened! I do have memories of running by the stunt cars and through the Streets of America. I do remember for certain always running right through the heart of the Studios in front of the giant hat. We will make our way out of a side exit and come out of the park. At this point I always know I can do this.
As you exit the park you will pass by the front entrance and follow the walkway to the Boardwalk Resort. This is a narrow path and you will probably see increased spectators in this area. Once you are on the walkway you will look ahead at an overpass. That overpass will put you at about the mile #24 marker! You are so close! You have 2.2 miles left.
Next up….We talk about spectating and cheering for runners on race weekend. On the course we go to Epcot.