2010 Disney Marathon Recap

I’m still alive, but not feeling great. Let me start at the beginning though…

The day before the race we drove from the Sarasota area to Orlando for the expo. Ben’s brother Jon was our driver :) We were all shocked at how cold it was! Jon didn’t even pack pants!

Disney World Marathon Recap

The expo wasn’t amazing considering the size of the race.

Disney World Marathon Recap expo

Look at me smiling…little do I know what’s in store for in tomorrow…Disney World Marathon Recap expo

Then, we went to the hotel where I met up with Meghann (who was also running) and Melissa (spectating). We went to dinner for some carb-loading at a little Italian place.

what to eat before the disney world marathon

I started with a boring salad.

what to eat before the disney world marathon

I ordered my own small pizza with broccoli, tomatoes and onions – they were a little cheap with the toppings. I thought it was just nerves, but my stomach was hurting so I only ate three pieces of my pizza.

what to eat before the disney world marathon

When we got back to the room Ben and Jon went to the movies and I set out all my gear for the next morning. While packing everything I ate two cookies for extra carbs, but my stomach was still bothering me.

When I finally got in bed I could not sleep. I laid awake for hours until I got up to go to the restroom and realized my throat was killing me. I called Ben and told him to bring back throat spray and Dayquil. This was not the way I wanted this night to go.

When I asked Ben what should I do he said, “Just try to come out of this alive.” Thanks Ben, thanks. sick before the marathon

I finally got to sleep around 1am – just in time for 2 hours of sleep before my 3am wake up call! I hydrated, ate and took the Dayquil. I was super nervous about this because I kept second guessing myself – maybe I was just really nervous, maybe I wasn’t sick…but I didn’t want to take the chance by not taking medication and feeling super sick during the race.

I took the throat spray with me to use up to the start of the race too.

disneyworld marathon review

It was so freezing in Orlando I brought a hotel towel to cover my head and try to keep some heat in me. It didn’t work that well, but it was better than nothing.

disneyworld marathon review

I don’t have any pics of the race because Ben wasn’t able to catch me on the course. He was getting text updates (from Disney) of my location, but he had expected me to be going a bit slower and was one step behind me every point he stopped at. This is how I know I started out way too fast and screwed myself.

walt disneyworld marathon race review

Remember my disposable running gear? Well I ended up cutting the sweatshirt up the front and the sweatpants down the sides. But – I wish I wouldn’t have! I was so cold and wanted to keep them on, but the pants were flying all over the place so I ditched them at the start! I kept the sweatshirt on the entire race and just let it flap in the wind. I kept trying to tie it closed, but my hands were so frozen I couldn’t feel my fingers enough to do it right!

walt disneyworld marathon race review

I was really good about eating enough this race, but I was afraid to drink too much since I wasn’t sweating much liquid out. I didn’t want to over-hydrate myself which can be very dangerous (hyponatremia). So even though I was thirsty I was limiting my liquids. After the race I realized this was not necessary because my pee was darker than normal (I know you wanted to know that).

Around mile 8 I started thinking about the restroom. I didn’t have to go, but I felt like I had a bubble in my stomach (gas?). I am super afraid of the dreaded “runner’s trots”. So I stopped a porta-potty to make sure I didn’t go in my pants. I was quick so it didn’t add too much time to the clock.

I did not look at my Garmin once until mile 19. It was under my clothes and I knew I wasn’t going to break any records, so I thought “No news is good news.” But, I should have realized I was pacing too fast.

At mile 18 I hit the wall hard. The plan was for Ben and Jon to see me at mile 19 and he had my sunglasses and Vaseline in case I needed it. I told myself I would just drop out of the race and go home with him. Yes, I really decided that in the middle of the marathon.

I felt sick and tired and hopeless. I wanted to quit.

Luckily, Ben didn’t catch me at mile 19 so I had to keep going. From that point on I was run-walking the rest of the race.

When I saw that at mile 20 I was behind to beat my PR I kinda gave up on trying to get a good time. Boo.

I finished in 4:27:41. But, that’s better than dropping out at 19, right?

Ben caught me right out of the chute and I feel like someone kicked my ass. For some reason my whole body felt jacked-up.

walt disneyworld marathon race review

Ben and I after the race:

walt disneyworld marathon race review

When we got back to the hotel room I ate my leftover pizza, a muffin and a few cookies. I was actually a little hungry, which doesn’t normally happen after a long run.

walt disneyworld marathon race review

Then, I showered, laid down and let the sickness take over. I had been trying to fight it for a few days, but knew I was getting sick. Finally I could just be sick.

I couldn’t take any ibuprofen (my usual drug of choice) because it’s dangerous to take before or immediately after a long run. And for some reason I forgot about the Dayquil (which has acetaminophen and is safe to take).

We had a few hours to kill before we had to catch our flight so we went to the movies.

walt disneyworld marathon race review

I ate randomly for the rest of the day. I wasn’t hungry, but my body felt depleted so I made myself eat. I also tried to get a picture of how blood-shot my eyes were, but it didn’t come out. walt disneyworld marathon race review

After a good night’s rest I still feel a little sick and my body hurts. I think most of it is from the marathon. I normally can fight off illness with a good night’s rest, but the mary taxed my body a little too much.

I just don’t understand why my back hurts – and I’m constantly reminded of this when I cough :(

My thoughts about the race: I am definitely disappointed with how I did and my time. I know I can do better than that. I realized going into this race that my head wasn’t in the game. You have to be mentally prepared for a marathon and I wasn’t.

I really tried to “pscyhe” myself up for this, but for some reason I just couldn’t dig deep enough. I wish I would have just slowed my running instead of walking toward the end. But, I have learned a lot from this race.

My biggest regret is now I have to do another marathon to redeem myself. Damn. Okay, one more – and then I’m sticking to the halfs. For real B.


  1. says

    Girl, I think your time was awesome! Don’t be down on yourself! Everyone is talking about how cold it was and how it was tougher than expected. 4:27 is nothing it sniff at!

    YAY for MONICA!

  2. Lauren says

    Monica, you did awesome! Marathons are hard to run, hard on the body… be proud that you finished! Having said that, the photo of you with the hotel towel on your head is pretty hilarious. The towel is so small!

  3. says

    You did great! Don’t let this one marathon get you down. We all bonk sometime and you only learn from the experience. Sad that I couldn’t make it to the blogger lunch meet-up, hope you still had a great trip in Orlando!

  4. says

    You’re so hard on yourself, I think you need to step back and look at all you did! This was incredible and a great human feat! Anybody off the street would drop their jaw to hear your story, be proud!

  5. says

    I know you’re disappointed but I’m in awe of you! I ran my first 5K in September and almost died, so what you did is a miracle in my eyes. Be proud of yourself, and thanks for writing such a great post! – Alison

  6. Tammy says

    Even if you don’t feel the sweat, your body uses more energy to keep itself warm and the wind will evaporate the sweat off of you…aka..dehydration! Your time, feeling “funky”, was better than my time feeling awesome….that may not be consolation, but when you do better on your next race, I bet you will do awesome!

  7. says

    You did awesome despite everything you had going against you. Don’t be disappointed!!!

    January is a really hard time to do a marathon, staying commited through the holidays and then of course the weather. While I love the Disney marathon its not one I’d do very often due to its timing.

  8. says

    you are so tough! what you did was amazing and i’m so proud of you for pushing through and finishing because no matter how “slow” you were (and you totally were not even though it wasn’t the finish you wanted) it’s so much better than a dnf. congrats on working so hard :)

  9. says

    Congratulations girl! You’re an inspiration. Please please please stop being so hard on yourself. You were sick and you ran a freakin’ marathon. You should be very proud of yourself! You Rock!!!

  10. susan says

    congrast Monica!!!! I am so proud of you. See now you have to do LA with me not this year though. Your time is amazing i have to start running with you so i can get faster, it must be my little steps.

  11. Christy says

    Congrats Monica! That is an amazing accomplishment! There are other people who ran the race who had their “head in the game” and were not sick and they still came in after you! So you didn’t beat your PR, so what?? You did FANTASTIC despite feeling so horrible! I know it doesn’t feel as rewarding as when you run your best race, but there is always another race around the corner. There is always another tomorrow. Take it easy! :)

  12. says

    I’m proud of you for finishing! You had some challenges and you pushed through them. Very inspiring.

    I keep reading race recaps and they really make me nervous that I’m even thinking about trying to do a 1/2 marathon with hubby in Dec. in Jamaica. I don’t even run…well we bought me running shoes this weekend and I ran for the first time on a treadmill yesterday. I have a lot of training ahead of me that is for sure!

    Hope you’re feeling better soon!

  13. says

    Great job, Monica!!! I was thinking about you yesterday. You did awesome, especially given the circumstances (I heard the weather was brutal). Most people would have pulled the covers over their head and gone back to sleep.

    4:27 is a GREAT time. And you pushed through and didn’t give up, which is equally wonderful.

  14. says

    what a freaking awesome time! i mean shit, you rocked in even with a sore throat, hitting walls, and almost dropping out? ur my hero!


  15. Amanda says

    You are awesome! If I was sick and had to run a mary… I would of dropped out. You are quite the inspiration…. And uh: watch that cough. If your back hurts before and after coughing you may have pneumonia. It’s one of the classic features. Take it easy and get well soon!

  16. says

    Monica you are SO hard on yourself! YOU JUST RAN 26MILES! That is an incredible achievement, especially considering you felt ill, it was freezing, your clothes were uncomfortable, you only got 2hours sleep…you had lots agaisnt you and you DID IT and you didn’t quit!! (btw I think your time is super, amazing – I would love a time like that!!).
    Seriously, you need to see how fabulous you are and how well you did!! And I don’t think you should have any regrets – if you’ve learnt something, then it was a good experience and you’ll come out of it stronger :)
    Be proud of yourself – everyone else is!! :)

  17. Olivia says

    Hi Monica!
    I am a new reader and I am so inspired by your blog and you race. I would have totally stayed in bed if I was as sick as you were. Way to go for totally sticking with it. You should feel amazing!!!! Thanks for an awesome blog and congratulations.

  18. says

    You did wonderfully!
    Please don’t beat yourself up. Sick or not, I’m totally envoius of your time.
    Rest up and enjoy your amazing accomplishment.

  19. says

    I got a little bit sad reading your recap. But yeah… Your head wasn’t really in the marathon. In my case, I never dared joined a marathon or even a half because I knew that my mental and emotional state will not allow it at the moment.

  20. says

    I think you’re awesome for even attempting. So many people would be terrified of even running even a 5K or 10K…but you ran a whole fricken marathon! I would be ecstatic if i could run for that long šŸ˜›

    But i understand that did you didn’t do as well as you had expected. Happens to the best of us sometimes :(

  21. says

    I think you did AMAZING and I am super proud of you!! And I’m glad you didn’t drop out at mile 19!! It may not have been as great as you wanted, but you still did great!! You’re my hero. :-)

  22. says

    I’m sorry you had such a crazy race! It was freezing out there for sure! I think everyone of you who raced had some seriously rough conditions to deal with! I know spectating kicked my ass! Congrats on making it through alive!!! If you noticed a crazy redhead with bright yellow signs and cowbell a little after mile 25 it was me!

  23. Sveta says

    WooHooo, its all over! But you are being WAY to hard on yourself! I think a pat on the back and cake is in order, you deserve it!

    I had the same problem with back pain after my marathon, the muscles are tired from holding you upright/stabilizing your body. thats why it hurts when you cough and your muscles contract.

    I’m stepping up my yoga and core strength game to prevent this in my next one!

  24. says

    Girl, you are grand master for going out there in those temps and running all those miles! You should give yourself mad props for getting across that line, heck even starting with how miserably cold everyone was!!!

    smiles! there will always be another one!!!

  25. says

    Congrats! That was not a PR race at all, it was sooo cold! I decided to take pictures with characters in order to justify not running a great race. You can see them on my blog. BUT, way to go! Be proud!

  26. says

    I ran this race it was way fun but sooooo friggen cold! I had nagging injuries and I’m a big baby when it comes to cold, so my time was less than impressive. So I stopped at just about every character to take pictures. :) I’m hoping to redeem myself in 2013.

  27. says

    This reminds me of my last half marathon. I was sick most of the week and despite my hydration strategy I think the meds dehydrated me. I too was wary of drinking too much but when I felt thirsty at the start of the race I knew I’d have problems. And I did, hitting my wall around mile ten and running/walking the rest of the way. It’s so frustrating to have months of training come down to how you feel on one day!

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