Ever have a girls’ weekend? If it’s coming up, I know you can’t wait. If it passed, you wish you could go back. Can fun, fit, and sexy be rolled into one fabulous weekend? Of course, it can. Where can you find it? Disney. Now hold on. I bet the first thing that comes to mind is long lines and screaming kids. Believe me when I tell you it’s possible.
Have you ever heard of Run Disney? It’s a running weekend. I don’t think I’ve sold you on it yet. Keep reading. My BFF and I are fitness freaks, but you don’t have to be running maniac to be part of this running weekend. People of all different ages, daughters, mothers, grandmothers and fitness levels participate. It is so much fun that the event sells out in about an hour. There are so many ways you can plan out your weekend, so I’m going to tell you about ours and give you some other options.
There are different weekend themes in Disney World and Disney Land. We like going in February to the Princess Half Weekend. They have a 5K (3.1 miles), 10k (6.2 miles), and a half marathon (13.1 miles). You can run whichever one you want, choose all three, or be a supporter. We do the Glass Slipper Challenge, a combination of the 10K and half marathon. We earn a medal for each and a third for doing the challenge. Earning that bling is the best feeling!
Are you ready to sign up? Not yet, keep reading. Make sure to know when registration opens because it sells out quickly. Once you have signed up, you can pick a collector’s pin and jacket you can only get if you run. We usually buy it, but you don’t have to. The weekend can be as expensive, action-packed, or relaxed. “Chill” is how we like it. If you want to go out to dinner, make sure you make arrangements. Some are hard to get since it is such a busy event, so plan ahead.
Getting Ready for the Race
After all that waiting, the weekend was finally here. Woohoo.. we were free at last! Let the FUN begin. We left for Orlando first thing that Thursday morning. We arrived on Disney property around 11:00 a.m., left our luggage at the front desk, and got a quick bite before catching the Magic bus to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, right on Disney Resort. We picked up our bibs, and anything we ordered and enjoyed the expo. At the expo, we got samples and to see the new gadgets in the running world. Bonus tip: There are always super cute outfits that you can only get that weekend (so, yes, we got some shopping in for our girls’ weekend).
Where Should We Stay?
We love staying at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa for several reasons. It’s walking distance from Disney Springs, where many restaurants, clubs, and shopping are located (but don’t worry. It’s across the lake, so you can’t hear the noise.) Disney Springs is perfect for hanging out, dining out, and maybe doing a little dancing. You get to dress up, have a little wine, and feel sexy, all while on Disney property. The best part for us is the kitchen in our room. We love having breakfast comfortably on the balcony and just talking. Bonus tip: We order groceries a few days before and have them delivered the day we arrive.
Friday is the 5K. You can walk the whole three miles. We don’t do this one. Instead, it’s our pool, park, or spa day. It all depends on what we want to do and when we got our reservations for our wonderful massages at Senses Spa. It’s located right in the hotel. This is a must-do that you can not miss during this fabulous experience. Make sure to make your reservations very far in advance.
Saturday is our 10k. This is my favorite. We start in the Epcot parking lot. We run to the Boardwalk and then into Disney’s Main Street towards Cinderella’s castle, through the castle, and end in Epcot. It is just so amazing. Along the run, there are Disney characters you can pose with for a photo. Of course, there is water, Gatorade, restrooms, and anything you may need during a run. The best part is at the end, where you get your goody bag and a medal. The run is held very early in the morning by the time we are done. It is only 8 a.m. We have the whole day to do whatever we want.
Sunday is our half marathon. It is the same as the 10K, just longer, so we run many more highways and go to different parks. We start and end at Epcot. The characters and the finish line make it all worth it. Ultimately, we get our half marathon medal and the third for doing the challenge. Running 19.3 miles in one weekend counts as getting fit. Remember, if you are not a runner, do the 5K. You can walk the whole thing. You can chat it up to the finish line.
I love these weekends. I know I had fun because I hate saying goodbye to my BFF. That is what the weekend is all about: friends, fun, and fitness.