I took a week off from Canada to fly home for the Star Wars Dark Side weekend. I was worried about how I would do during the half that Sunday because my training wasn’t one of my best. I don’t think that there was one week where I ran every day that I was supposed to. Work had been taking up most of my time up here, so when my alarm would go off early each morning, I would sometimes hit the snooze and lay my head back down. Another problem was the weather: I had been training in freezing conditions and Florida was anything but freezing during April.
I flew back to Florida late Friday night. I already knew that it was unlikely that I would get anything from the Expo because the merchandise usually sells out the first day. I tried to sleep some on the plane, but that is really hard when there is a screaming kid a couple rows back. I went to bed shortly after I arrived home (after I spent some time with the kittens!) because I had the brilliant idea of signing up to work the 10k with Track Shack the next morning. At least it prepared me for getting up early for the half!
The Star Wars 10k was the first Disney 10k that I had worked. The good thing was that it was a shorter shift than working the half. I had to get to the Wide World of Sports complex at 3:30 in the morning because I was working the finish line. When I got there we were shown around so we knew the layout in case runners had any questions about where things were. Once the race had started we moved to the finish line. It was exciting because I got to see the first finisher break the tape! This was my view:
After quite a few first finishers crossed we were moved to our posts that we would stay at for the remainder of the race. My job was to make sure no one went back the wrong way up the finishing chute. Most people listened, some argued. I’m not sure why people feel the need to wait for people in the chute itself. That’s what the family reunion area is for. Also finishing photos are not group photos. It is supposed to be you with your medal. Coming back up the chute with friends to take a group photo is not allowed and really makes no sense. There were about six backdrops with characters in the family reunion area where group photos could be taken. It was our job to clear the chute as soon as possible to get the runners on their way. Since I was very lacking in sleep I couldn’t wait until my shift was over so I could rest up for the half.
After everyone had been cleared out of the finishing chute and the two missing kids had been found, I was allowed to leave. I headed home to get ready to head right back there for the expo since I still had to pick up my packet.
I was really disappointed with the expo. I usually am able to go the first day and get what I want. We first went up to the pre-order area after I got my bib and the official merchandise area that was up there was closed and completely empty. I went to the pre-order pick up area to ask if they had extra jackets. I saw the design when someone posted it online and really wanted one. After I got my Princess one I really regretted not ordering the inaugural Dark Side one. I was told that extras would be sold at the merchandise tent after the race. I hoped that my family would be able check for one before I finished the race.
We left that building and made our way to the main expo building. As expected when we entered the official merchandise area almost everything was gone. There wasn’t anything that I needed, I just would have liked the a tank if they had one. They didn’t, so I ended up getting a yellow performance shirt with Vader and storm troopers on it.
After I paid for the shirt we were able to relax and walk around the expo. I had a list of a couple booths that I wanted to check out. I talked to photo pass to inquire about a single day memory maker since I was only doing one race. I was told it was $69. A little more than I wanted, but still cheaper than Marathonfoto! I looked for the Luna Bar booth and the Cliff Bar pacers, but couldn’t find either one. I didn’t even see pacers at the half. I was really bummed by the Luna bars not being there because it was one of my favorite booths at the expos and I was getting hungry.
The last thing I wanted to check out was the Sparkle Skirts booth. I had been hearing for a while how great they were, but I couldn’t justify the high price tag and high shipping price. I wanted to see one in person to figure out why they were loved so much. When we got to the booth there was a sale rack right up front. I looked though a bit and found a very pretty and sparkly one for only $55! They are usually all about $70. There were some curtains to the side where people were trying on their skirts. Chris convinced me to try it on, so off I went. As soon as I put it on I couldn’t believe how comfortable it was! I jogged in place for a bit in the dressing room and it felt great! I stepped out to talk to the owner and she made sure that I had picked the right size. It was a perfect match so I bought it! I had finally fallen to the power of the Sparkle Skirt.
There wasn’t really much more to look at and I was exhausted, so we left to get lunch. After I ate I just rested and then went to bed really early. I wanted to be the best I could for the half the next day. I was really nervous, but all I could do was my best and trust in my training.