If you still think running a marathon is an intimidating, unpleasant, or unrealistic concept, it’s high-time you heard about Walt Disney World’s series of marathons and considered Orlando, Florida as your next spontaneous trip.
The Walt Disney World Marathon (Jan. 13, 2013) is a 26-mile (42-km) course that takes runners from Epcot and Magic Kingdom to Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. There is, of course, loads of entertainment along the way and an after-party in Downtown Disney. Participants get loads of personalized swag, too. The Walt Disney World Half Marathon (Jan. 12, 2013) is exactly half the distance at 13 miles (21 km). If you think you can handle both of those marathons, register for the Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge and do the whole 39 miles (63 km) over the weekend for a special Goofy finisher medal.
The Disney Family Fun Run (Jan. 11, 2013) is much shorter and has a Stroller Walk Division for those with smaller kids, but the pacing requirement is the same as for the runners (remaining at least faster than 16 minutes per mile). For kids that want to give it a go, there’s also a series of Run Disney Kids Races (Jan 10-12) with five different age groups, including a Diaper Dash for little ones 12 months and under!
For seminars on training and nutrition before running the Walt Disney World marathon, head to Disney’s Health & Fitness Expo (Jan. 10–12, 2013) and consider some new fitness ideas and attire; look out for some celebrity runner appearances, too.
Some other good things to know are that you don’t need theme park tickets to participate, the marathons are held rain or shine, and you can wear costumes!
The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend is one of many throughout the year—don’t forget to look into the Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend, Disney’s Princess Half Marathon Weekend, Expedition Everest Challenge, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Weekend, the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend, and especially the classic Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend—like the slogan says, it’s the Happiest Race on Earth!