The Inaugural Disneyland 10k aka Running In Wonderland

I’ve done many Disney races but there is something really special about being part of an inaugural race. When I heard the theme for the inaugural Disneyland 10k was going to be Alice in Wonderland there was absolutely no way that I wasn’t going to participate. It seemed like such a far off abstract idea –this Disneyland 10k- when I first signed up. But yet here I was up early and getting my race face ears on!

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I decided to give a nod to the Cheshire Cat with my race day outfit. And, despite all of the travel, heat, and exhaustion from the day before I was up raring to go!

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I knew I was somewhat dehydrated and I had been fighting heel pain since my last training run. However, I did not fly all of the way to CA to quit so I was in it to finish…and finish strong at that! (Please note I don’t condone running injured or sick. Always listen to your doctor and your body.)

All of the pre-race festivities were fun, as always. The hubs even joined in for a little dancing!

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It turned out that the 5K was starting just 30 minutes before the 10K so there were loads of racers and family members milling around. I have to say that I really enjoyed the laid back vibe of a Run Disney event in CA. I felt zero pressure. Even though there were tons of runners we all made it to our corrals in plenty of time.

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Since I was back a few corrals I had a lot of waiting around to do. I passed the time by admiring all of the runners decked out in their Wonderland finest!

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Finally, it was race time!

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I immediately felt pain in my right heel which was discouraging. Luckily the first mile was chaotic and there was not a lot of time to think about it.  I dashed through the streets of Anaheim knowing the best was yet to come!

Honestly, it wasn’t long before we entered the parks. I was getting my first view of CA Adventure and I could not stop making mental notes: Must take photos in Car’s Land, Must dance at the Mad T Party, Must stroll Paradise Pier.

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It was all I could do not to stop and gawk and everything. Since Im not the fastest runner (aka Im super slow) I knew photo stops weren’t really an option so I kept on trucking.

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Next up was the main event…Disneyland.  I got a little emotional running in. This was THE place that started it all. THE streets that Walt walked. Of course, I doubt he ever had to sprint through them like he was on fire to avoid getting swept. 😉 Not that I didn’t enjoy it, because I did. I even took a second to admire my all-time favorite Disney ride- The Tea Cups.

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IMG_5562 (300x400)(Alice & Hatter Photo Credit to Run Eat Date Sleep)

After a jaunt through the park and the castle it was Downtown Disney for the final stretch.  There was so much support on this last leg that I felt myself getting emotional again. It also hit me that I was about to finish this race….on time.

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That was the last push I needed. I took off for the finish as fast as I could muster. I saw the hubs cheering from the stands and I was all smiles as I crossed the finish.

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My race bling was SO. WORTH. IT.

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Weirdly enough, I ran into Andrea immediately and we celebrated. I told her how different this race felt for me. I got to be super excited at the finish instead of feeling sick and exhausted. It was a feeling that made me want to sign up and do it all over again! (Are you sure The Princess 10K is sold out Disney???) I was soaked in sweat, totally exhausted, and thrilled!

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My first ever 10K was a huge success! Not so much in my time or my splits but in my attitude. In the past Ive disabled my time chip out of frustration. However, this race taught me a valuable lesson: Its impossible to move forward without embracing where you are. So, for the very first time, I posted my time/splits on Facebook, Twitter, and here on the blog….

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This race made me want to be a better runner. I cant wait to see where I go from here!

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Thanks for an amazing time Run Disney!


Please link your 10K Recap in the Comments! 🙂


  1. Jessica C. says:

    WOOHOO! Congratulations! How fun and exciting!! Totally inspired me to get back on track with the running! Loved all the pics and the update! 🙂

  2. Emily says:

    Yay!!! Congrats on a great race!! That medal was pretty awesome. I really enjoyed the 10K course because we spent so much time in the parks. And great pic of the tea cups – love!

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