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Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend - The Dark Side

Discussion in 'Running at WDW' started by HolleBolleGijs, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    I did not know that. So I will ignore my Fitbit (especially since I forgot to stop it) and go with the course markers. Happy I got a PR - knocked 10 minutes off my time from Princess Half. But then, this was only my 2nd half. :)
     
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  2. dreamfinder

    dreamfinder Well-Known Member

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    Completely normal. Remember that a course is measured/certified as ideal point to point. Even with an accurate GPS device, that distance is going to be shortest distance from corner to corner, while when you are running you will end up meandering around, never doing that straight line. As an idea for app accuracy, did a run Sunday, my Garmin said 9.25, but Runkeeper said 9.43.

    The only race that would possibly be a qualifier is the full, and yes it is possible to qualify on that course. Any full marathon course that is certified by USATF or AIMS can be used for BQ status.

    Even the course markers can be hit or miss. The only thing you can really trust is the start/finish lines. Yes, they should be as measured on the certification, however they can't always be placed accurately (sometimes they are in the middle of a cross street for instance).
     
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  3. Texas84

    Texas84 DVC Fan Boy Premium Member

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    Forgot to mention the best part of the race. Riding the bus back to Sports and seeing all the runners who still hadn't made it into DHS yet. :D
     
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  4. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    I was probably one of them....
     
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  5. Chet Dakota

    Chet Dakota Member

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    This is going to turn into somewhat of a trip report...

    Expo - got there about 1230p or so on Thursday and glad to see that they had Kessel Run shirts left. Last year, I got there about 230 on Thursday and all the Kessel Run shirts for Men were already gone.

    5k - Nice little fun run. Liked seeing the Ewoks out. Had never seen them before although I read that they were at Galactic Nights last week. Although, I thought it was odd that they had that little camper trailer parked back in the woods a little in plain view at the Ewok station. My first thought when I saw it was that 'Heisenberg' was parked there and doing some cooking. LOL.

    Hopefully, after SWL opens, the 5k will be all at DHS.

    10k - Course was ok. Still wish that there was more park time in DHS. I know that with the construction, a lot of paths are no longer available and some of the ones that are, are pretty narrow (but not any more narrow that the sidewalk path from DHS to Boardwalk). Not much time in Epcot either, really. I thought Rey and the two Wookies (Chewie and his dad or brother?) right the end was cool. If it was supposed to be Chewie, then they had Chewie on the course twice. Also, always enjoy seeing the CosPlayers out. There are about 10 times as many that show up at Light Side in DLR, but it is still cool. Thanks to those guys for showing up.

    We stayed at Boardwalk and after the 10k, I went back to room and took my bib off and entered my 5k and Challenge Bib Numbers in MyPhotoPass since I bought Memory Maker. Set all of the bibs, including my wife and son's 5k bibs on top of each other on the counter. We then left to hit DHS and then dinner at Italy in Epcot. Got back to the room late at about 930. Was all ready to go to bed and thought I would go ahead and pin my Challenge Bib to my Sunday Half shirt to not worry about it at 3am. Well, my Challenge bib was missing. All of the 5k bibs were still there. We are DVC, so Saturday was our Service Day, so housekeeping had been in the room. I could not believe it. Went up to the front and ended up talking to the Manager on duty, Tim. Told him the story, and he started making calls to see what could be done. By this time, it was about 10pm on Saturday night, about 5 hours before buses start to run. A rep of Housekeeping showed up, as well as a Disney Security Officer.

    Tim ended up talking to Paul (sorry, no last name) with RunDisney and they gave me direction to head over the the Start and go to Race Information Tent and to find Lauren (who apparently runs the event) and they would take care of me.

    I went to the tent as directed when I got there about 350a. Lauren was not around, but the workers there knew my name and were expecting me. They gave me a replacement/transferred Bib. The new bib had F corral on it, and I asked to start in my original C. I had a PhotoPass picture of me from the finish on Saturday that Tim printed out for me at the from the desk the night before in case I had any issues. The picture showed my original Bib number and Corral Placement on it. The worker led me to another RunDisney employee that knew my situation, and I showed him the picture and he gave me a C sticker to put on my bib. I was very thankful. I was going for a PR and there was no way I would have a chance starting in F with the crowd.

    After the event, I had a little issue trying to get my Challenge, Kessel Run and Coast to Coast medal because my new Bib Number was not on their computers. I had to back up to the two young girls at the first computer and they had me in their list, so I was ok and got all the medals in the end.

    As for the Half Course, I thought the run through the "Endor Woods" was ok, and I enjoyed the area where they had the light show going on. In fact, I thought the first four miles or so down to DAK went pretty fast. I liked seeing Palpatine and the Royal Guards out (never seen them before, ever), but i thought that they would have out them with the Emperor Chair. I thought it was odd seeing them standing by themselves on the exit road out of DAK. At least the "Parking Lot Run from Hell" was cut short this year at DAK. Still wish that we had more Park Time at DAK and less backstage roads/drives, and it would have been special to have run through Pandora in the dark with all of the lights on.

    The rest of the course was as expected, I guess. No Rey and Wookies on Sunday.

    Got some pics after the race, then headed back to the resort. Got off the bus at Swan and walked over to Boardwalk. Sat down and watched the mass of humanity along the DHS/Boardwalk sidewalk and felt bad for all of those people. There were just too many people trying to get through that narrow sidewalk. 95% of the people were walking because there was no way you could run in that crowd. A few were trying to run along the little asphalt drive area once you got past the water station, but there were workers telling participants to get back on the sidewalk. I could not imagine the backup at that water station. I bet some could have just swam the canal/lake there and gotten through quicker. It was crazy to see.

    I will say that I thought that the Resort Transportation for me was very smooth. Maybe it was because we were at Boardwalk, and we were the last stop on the route so after I got on, the next stop was the Start Area. Also, there was a dedicated Boardwalk bus or two on Sunday, so we boarded and filled an empty bus and off we went. Getting back after the races was easy with very little waiting.

    I remember last year, we stayed at AKL and waited a long time for buses to show up, and then on Sunday morning, our bus driver then got lost back in the backstage area of DAK (where we actually ran this year).

    Anyway, what did everyone think of the courses this year? I liked running through the parks on the second half of the run this year instead of the first half last year. In 2016, after mile 7, all you had to look forward to was asphalt roads and the dirt road through the woods to get to ESPN WWoS.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2017
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  6. Texas84

    Texas84 DVC Fan Boy Premium Member

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    I'm sorry, that was mean. :D
     
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  7. Chet Dakota

    Chet Dakota Member

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    Agree on the last two miles. I was fortunate to be ahead of the big crowd, but I witnessed it both Saturday and Sunday when I got back to Boardwalk. I felt bad for those in that mess.

    I have an Apple Watch and use Nike Run Plus. I think Saturday was pretty accurate for me actually, but Sunday my watch showed 13.35 miles total and I was getting mile updates on my watch before I hit the course markers. Obviously, as the course progressed, I was getting the app alert sooner and sooner.
     
  8. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    Hey, I'm slow, I admit it. ;) And runDisney put me in the last corral. So because I took that bathroom break in DAK and lost the 5 minutes faster than pace advantage, i.e., the Ballon Ladies, I was constantly afraid of being swept. Actually chatted with one as I was catching up with and them passing her. Really nice, very encouraging. And neither that I saw are very young. Kiddos to both ladies!

    Which brings up a point @Chet Dakota mentioned in his race report....congested areas. I decided after the 10k I was NOT going to run on the concrete walkway leading to the Boardwalk, since some runners get a little pushy at that point and I didn't want to end up swimming to the Boardwalk. So Sunday, I ran on the asphalt, along with several others. We ran past several workers and none told us to get back on the sidewalk. And at one point in Epcot, I had to run outside the cones because there was no room to safely run within the marked path. runDisney really needs to resolve those congested areas, especially the last half a mile or so in Epcot - I don't know why they think hundreds of runners can safely make that turn behind whatever building that is as you approach the finish line. At least we didn't have to run through the woods to finish at WWoS this year.....
     
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  9. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    I had the same issue with my Fitbit. Usually got the mile update about .35 miles before the race mile marker.
     
  10. Chet Dakota

    Chet Dakota Member

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    I know that I just can not let this one go, but that was terrible. Thanks runDisney for changing this.
     
  11. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    Oh, you're not the only one. I was shocked and ****ed when I realized we were actually going to run on that narrow path through the woods... I wonder how many 1st time runDisney participants decided that last year's 10k & half would be their last after running through that?
     
  12. LizaMarie89

    LizaMarie89 Active Member

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    Finally returned home to a very very very wet and rainy North Carolina and I thought I'd take a minute to add my two cents/race report.

    We got to Disney and went straight to the expo on Saturday morning as soon as it open. Picked up my bib, race pin, shirt and a few goodies before heading over to get taped at the KT tape booth. I was told it would definitely stay on for 3-5 days.... Didn't last two hours before I had to retape... Not so thrilled about that...

    Went to Disney Springs and had a Birthday brunch at Chef Mickeys before heading to the Polynesian for some Dole Whip. After getting back to Pop Century we ended up just relaxing and that's when the nerves kicked in. My stomach started seriously misbehaving and I couldn't even choke down dinner. I have a severe case of celiac disease which likes to complicate things as well so it was not a fun night.

    Anyways - managed to fall asleep for a very restless night around 10:30 and woke up at 2:15 to get ready for the race. We were on the 3am bus and headed to the start before I knew it. My stomach was still very unhappy with me so I felt like crap but I was a mixture of nervous/excited to get it underway.

    I was in the second wave of corral F and as they were staging us to the start line I was pushed into a barrier by the masses trying to get to the front and ended up with a pretty bruised knee before the race even began. I was angry as heck about that - I understand that nobody wants to be swept but, seriously?

    The race was... interesting to say the least. I agree that there really was not enough course entertainment but I liked the overall lay of the course. I have come to the conclusion that when someone in Florida says there are hills that I need to take them running on my training routes - the only thing that bothered me was the looped overpass into MGM and it wasn't at all because of the incline - it was because it sloped towards the lake. My ankle was NOT happy with that. As I said before, I gave up my pace to stay with a girl who was struggling around mile three until she got to a med tent and the woman who had just had heart surgery 6 weeks ago. I find myself hoping both of them finished but I don't know. I ended up stopping a few times - once for the bathroom and maybe for 5 photos along the route?

    I was really upset with some behaviors I saw - the worst being a man who dead on stopped to take a picture of a mile marker and accidentally tripped a girl - she completely face-planted into the asphalt and he just ran off. I don't think he realized what had happened and I was upset that I wasn't in a place where I could stop to check if she was alright. Just the general attitude of some people was troubling - one woman snapped at me when I asked her if she was alright when I heard her struggling to breathe but then I think she realized that she had and thanked me for caring. Overall it wasn't a very 'fun' race at times.

    But I got to sprint towards my best friend who was volunteering in Epcot and give her a huge hug and my big sister was with me at the start and finish lines. Plus, despite two blisters on my right foot the size of half dollars, I was still running for quite a few spurts even at mile 13. This won't be my last Disney race but it may be my last Dark Side one unless some things change in the future.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2017
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  13. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    I hope your knee is okay. Yeah, some of the runners need to LISTEN to the etiquette announcement before the race starts. No one wants to get swept, but dang it, don't run over your fellow runners to avoid the Balloon Ladies.

    I hate those ramps for the same reason - the slope. I usually end up briskly walking them, because I am afraid they'd be a prime ankle turn spot with that slope.

    Glad you got back safely. I've got a couple of excellent blisters on my foot, too. I look like an ad for bandaids....
     
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  14. dreamfinder

    dreamfinder Well-Known Member

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    The trailers are always pretty close to any character not in park. I imagine it's not real safe (or easy) for them to trapse long distances when they are on the grass.

    Glad to hear the bib thing all worked out. Would be kinda interesting if there were pictures of someone else wearing your bib that showed up in your Photopass account.........
     
  15. Gucci65

    Gucci65 Well-Known Member

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    I am not a runner by any stretch of the imagination, but I did start training for this back in November using the Galloway method. I am happy to report that I did my 5k, but more importantly I FINISHED the 10k!!!!! I was so worried about it. Great experience overall and I can't wait to do it again next year! Only thing I didn't care for was getting up at 3:30am or the shin splints lol.
     
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  16. Texas84

    Texas84 DVC Fan Boy Premium Member

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    Checked my photos and didn't get the medal picture with the silly paddle. My number was probably covered up.

    Went to DHS Tuesday morning. The Stormtroopers stopped someone to inspect his Rylo half medal and acted confused. Funny.
     
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  17. JillC LI

    JillC LI Well-Known Member

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    I hate to break it to you, but you are a runner. :)

    Ugh. Annoying.
     
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  18. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    I just looked at the results. The fastest time for the Half was a gentleman from Brazil - 1:07:14. :jawdrop:

    How is that possible? At the 5k split, his time was 15:55. That's a little under a 5 minute mile. Which he basically sustained for most of the 13.1 miles. OMG.

    He also clocked the best time for the 10k at 31:18. And ran like that the next day.....

    Wow.
     
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  19. LAKid53

    LAKid53 Well-Known Member

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    Another couple ended up in my photos for the 5k, holding their paddle. But mine was there, too. Won't they be surprised if I show up in theirs....
     
  20. Chet Dakota

    Chet Dakota Member

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    One stopped me on Saturday with the 10k medal and gave me a thumbs up and patted my shoulder.

    You know that they do that routine where they stop someone and ask for their identification? I always want them to stop me or my son and ask for our identification and I want to respond to them with a wave of the hand by saying "You don't need to see his identification", and see if they have a response.
     
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