My First runDisney Fun Run

In the past I have tried every exercise program out there. I’ve worked out from home with DVD’s used the EA Sports workout program, used the Wii Fit and joined a gym for my workouts. However, it wasn’t until I thought about using the Couch to 5K app to try running that I really found something that I liked. I loved it and I finished the 9 – week program which resulted in running for 30 minutes straight.

I finished the program at the beginning of March and was so excited to see that there would be a runDisney event offered at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration so I signed up.

What is runDisney

runDisney is a series of half marathons, a marathon and other distance events such as the 48.6-mile Dopey Challenge to a 5K, 10K and kids dash races. These races take place at the Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World. These events give runners a chance to run through the parks on a specific route and earn beautiful Disney-themed finisher medals. Racers also get to experience Disney characters and entertainment along the running route. More than 163,000 runners participate in runDisney events each year.

For many years I have watched some of my Disney friends participate in runDisney races and I’ve always wanted to do one. As part of my 2014 goals I signed up for the Disneyland Half Marathon taking place in August 2014 and I will be running the 5K with my eight year old daughter and the 10K race by myself.

RunDisney Merchandise

As part of the fun run we were given a snazzy runDisney shirt and a pair of the New Balance running shoes. I am in love with the shoes and wish I could wear them everyday because they are so comfortable. They give your foot a nice little hug and support the arches nicely.

runDisney and New Balance Gear - Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2014 - #DisneySMMoms

Before the Fun Run

I look so excited to be up at 5:00 a.m., don’t I?
Fun Run Selfie Before Leaving Hotel

The Fun Run was held on Sunday morning and we were to meet at 5:30 a.m. at the ESPN Sports Zone at Downtown Disney. Guess what I forgot to do? I forgot to pack a running snack and I had nothing to eat prior to the race except for a bag of peanuts I found in my purse. I obviously need to plan a little bit better in that department.

Fun Run Selfie at MeetUp

We were treated to an early morning Good Form Clinic by New Balance where they reviewed the importance of posture, midfoot, cadence and lean. If you want more information about the Good Form Clinic (and a free app) then click here.

We were also given information from runDisney about their upcoming races and introduced to the Disney Parks Mom runDisney Panelist Faith D.

runDisney and Faith before FunRun Photo Credit Josh Hallett

Photo Credit Josh Hallett

Fun Run with Disney Parks Mom Faith D

With Disney Parks Mom Panelist and runDisney specialist Faith


And We Are Off

Here is a map of the course, looks pretty easy to me, but alas I would find out that I was wrong.  While I may have walked more than 2 miles a day at Disneyland before, I’ve never RAN it.

Fun Run 2 Mile Map from Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2014 - #DisneySMMoms

By the time we got into Disneyland I had already slipped on the wet pavement in Downtown Disney and now my pants were starting to fall off.  That’s right….my running pants were too big and they were falling off.  I was laughing so hard at myself and I ended up falling behind the walking / running pack.

Fun Run Starting in Downtown Disney

Fun Run Starting in Downtown Disney


Fun Run inside Disneyland Resort on Main Street

Fun Run inside Disneyland Resort on Main Street

Once I got my act together I tried to keep up a 30 second walk / 30 second run and I was doing pretty good but I was still at the back of the pack so I decided to make the most of it and take a few pictures along the way.

Fun Run inside Disneyland on Main Street with Castle

Fun Run inside Disneyland on Main Street with Castle

I finally made it through the course and into Disney’s California Adventure when I felt like I couldn’t finish the race.  I was exhausted.  I already had 3 jammed packed days of fun and now I got up at 5:00 to run – I am one crazy girl.

What kept me going on the course was being able to tell my little girls that “Mommy did it!!” when I saw them at the finish line.  I was also really inspired by the wonderful cast members that were along the route cheering us on.  AND I even saw a Disneyland cat near Grizzy River Run.

By the time I was almost done with the Paradise Pier section I was ready to sit down, but then I got a wonderful surprise.  People that had already finished the fun run were coming back down the course to run with us.  Maria Bailey came running towards me saying “You can do it” and then I saw Faith and she is what really kept me moving.

Fun Run with Faith 2

Walking with Faith of the Disney Parks Moms Panel

She helped time me on the 30 second walk / run and she got me moving into Cars Land and to this beautiful sight….THE FINISH LINE!!

FunRun Finsih Line Picture Photo Credit Josh Hallett


I felt like I had turbo jets attached to my feet when I was running towards that finish line. Everyone was cheering and waiving their Cars Land flags and it was a great motivator. One of friends Courtney came out and ran the last few feet with me too. Having so much support to finish was a great feeling.

Fun Run Finish with Courtney Photo Credit Josh Hallett

Fun Run Finish Pose

I was super excited to see my family and have some breakfast. But first I took a selfie with Lightening McQueen.Fun Run Selfie with McQueen

When I finally made it back to the hotel room I used my Fascianator to help my arches feel better and reduce leg and foot soreness. This also was great for the whole family to use after our long days at Disneyland Resort.

Fascianator -

Finally, my favorite Kitty tells it like it is about running.
Grumpy Cat runDisney Photo - Credit Run Disney
Actually I love to run, but I still think Grumpy Cat is adorable so she can hate running, it’s ok.

I’d like to know – do you like to run? Have you done a runDisney event before?

Read more about my family filled fun trip here:
6 Thinks I Learned at Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2014
Disney Junior’s Give a Book, Get a Book Program

Disclosure:I was invited to attend the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration in Disneyland. I paid my own conference fees and received gifts during the conference. All opinions, experiences and thoughts are my own.

About Dawn

Dawn is a social influencer and has been writing about her nerdy side since 2004. She enjoys writing about Entertainment, Travel, Disney, Star Wars and life with two little girls. Her advice is to keep on dreaming, do what you love and life will lead you a path to your happiness. Dawn also writes for 5 Minutes for Mom.


  1. I have been so tempted to start running simply so I can do a runDisney event. Good job! You should be super proud of yourself!

  2. I’m so proud of you, Dawn! Great job. And you got some fabulous pictures along the way.

  3. Congratulations on your first 5k! So awesome to run your first race at a Disney event. It’s still in my bucket list as I would love to run in a Snow White costume some day.

    I was laughing when you said your pants were falling off! I’m sorry you fell Dawn. With the constant motion of running or walking, it’s really best to wear snug pants. Or try a tutu next time.

    PS. I would love it if you can add your blog to the I’m a Miss/Mrs Looking Good Blog Directory.  Check it out, thanks!

  4. Hi Dawn!
    Congrats on getting up so early and finishing! I am a runDisney junkie, having run all runDisney Tinkerbell Half Marathons since they started in 2012. I loved that so much that I took a whole bunch of my family and friends with me this year to the Princess Half Marathon in WDW – what a trip! Now my husband is signed up for his very first Half Marathon with this November’s AVENGERS-themed Half at Disneyland – super-excited!!
    I LOVE your Blog title. I am a Disney – Star Wars Nerd, and proud of it!! So much so that my hubby and I started a Star Wars/Disney, family friendly podcast, Skywalking Through Neverland. We nerds should stick together 😉
    Look forward to more of your articles!
    ~Sarah Woloski


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