runDisney’s biggest race weekend of the year, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, kicks off tomorrow. Runners will tackle a 5K, 10K, half marathon or full marathon — or a combination of races — early in the morning. In general, they finish before the theme parks open, so what do runners like to do before they hit the rides and attractions? If you’re new to Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, here are some suggestions.
** Take advantage of special photo ops in the finish line area. There usually is a spot to pose with your medal and a race-themed backdrop, as well as character opportunities.
** Go back to the runDisney Health and Fitness Expo. If you just popped in to the ESPN Wide World of Sports to pick up your bib and race packet, go back to shop and check out the freebies, like the complimentary taping of legs with the purchase of KT Tape. You might find samples of snacks, free pain relievers and other goodies, too.
** Also, at the last two runDisney race weekends at Walt Disney World, rarely seen characters were available to runners only for meet-and-greets at the expo. Lumiere was there for the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend and BB-8 was at the expo for the Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend: The Dark Side.
** Refuel. Sure, there’s the snack box at the finish line for your immediate need to eat, but how about an actual meal? If you haven’t made a breakfast or lunch reservation, don’t despair. Even though many of the popular restaurants at Walt Disney World are booked months in advance, people’s plans do change. In general, cancellations must be made 24 hours in advance in order to avoid a per-person charge, so keep checking My Disney Experience online or calling 407-WDW-DINE.
** Schedule a post-race massage. Walt Disney World has multiple spas and fitness centers on property. Again, even if you don’t have a reservation, it’s worth checking for cancellations and last-minute openings.
** Finally, above all else, wear your race medal or “I did it!” finisher T-shirt in the parks or elsewhere on property. After all, you earned it! Cast members and even other guests will congratulate you on your accomplishment and there are numerous places that make for great photo backdrops.