A Little More Each Day

One working mama learning to run & to maintain my 100+ pound weight loss!

How running Disney changed my life

on August 23, 2014

The Mickey Miles podcast celebrated their 200th episode with a discussion of how running Disney changes lives, including lots of call ins from Disney runners all over the country, including yours truly. 🙂 If you’d like to know what I sound like in the real life, check me out about an hour into the podcast. I sound less like a 12 year old girl than I used to, thankfully, and O was very excited to hear me on the radio Saturday morning.

Truly, I can’t say enough about the importance of RunDisney in my running life. I honestly don’t know if I would have kept running without the “carrot” of Disney running events.

Not long after I started running (two years ago this month! wow!),  we decided to book our very first Disney cruise. At that point, I’d decided that I liked the rock star feeling of running but was worried that I’d give up on it because it was hard and I was slow. I wasn’t sure I’d stick with it, honestly. Thanks to the wonder of the DisBoards, where my husband and I read post after post on the Disney cruise ships so we could plan and discuss tips, etc, I came across the Castaway Cay 5K. We weren’t going on the trip until April, so I decided to set that as my goal – that I would stick with running enough to get to run that 5K on our cruise. There were definitely times where I drifted to running once or twice a week, but I never gave up completely because I knew I was going to get that little plastic Mickey medal. I can remember telling everyone at my Weight Watchers meeting about my new goal.

Castaway Cay is a gorgeous (humid) place to run!

Castaway Cay is a gorgeous (humid) place to run!

I now know just exactly how “low key” the Castaway Cay 5K is for a Disney running event, but it was still such a great experience and I highly recommend it for anyone lucky enough to do a Disney cruise. I can’t wait to run it again in February!

As much as I love my little plastic Mickey medal, I love my Princess medal maybe just a smidge more. I will never forget how it felt to cross the finish line of the Princess Half Marathon, knowing that I could run 13.1 miles and really, that I could do anything. That race did exactly what I needed it do when I decided to run it – it kept me running enough to maintain my weight loss and it gave me a new goal and new challenge to ease me away from the weekly reward of weight loss stickers at Weight Watchers. I didn’t expect the absolute burst of confidence it gave me.

I still remember and love this moment :)

I still remember and love this moment 🙂

Disney World is definitely one of my happy places, if not my happiest place. I have so many wonderful memories from my own childhood, from trips with my husband and now trips with our son. That has made it the perfect, happy, supportive place for me to take on running challenges and feel like I would be supported and celebrated no matter my size or my speed. Yes, they’re expensive, but they are truly priceless for all RunDisney has done for me in helping me start and maintain my weight loss. It all started with a mouse indeed. 🙂


4 responses to “How running Disney changed my life

  1. Great story Jess! I just love how runDisney changes so many lives for the better, including my own! :0)

  2. […] a full marathon and I can think of no better place to do it than Disney World. Disney has been a huge motivation in my running from the beginning, so I’d naturally want to take that next step there. I won’t be […]

  3. […] been a huge part of my running journey and a big motivation for me to start running (more on that here). I know I’ll be back for a Disney race again soon. In the meantime, I plan to soak up every […]

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