What if you could find an easy way to do the right thing? My stomach is much more round than I would like, and I’m not setting a good example for my daughter. I’ve struggled with weight most of my life and I certainly don’t want her to do the same. This led me to find something we could do together that would be both healthy and fun — the Disneyland 5K run!
As part of the runDisney program, it’s one of many races that are put on throughout the year. They have themed runs like Star Wars and Tinker Bell, and many different levels of difficulty from a kids’ run, a 5K, a 10K, and even a half-marathon. If you’re really daring, you can race in the Dumbo Double Dare – both the 10K AND the half-marathon.
For us beginners, we decided to give our bodies a break and start with the 5K. Both my daughter and I have a big love of Disney, so pairing something we love with something that’s good for us seemed to be the perfect fit.
Tina Trybus, Manager of Disney Sports and Youth Programs, says she has a similar story. With a 9-year old daughter of her own, she too shared an affinity with Disney and living a healthy lifestyle. What differentiated the runDisney races was the opportunity to run through the famous theme parks and experience things during a race that you wouldn’t have the chance to do anywhere else. It becomes a family event.
“People say, ‘I want my family to come with me and there are plenty of things to do before and after I’m running.’ That family aspect is where we do add value.”
This is why many people choose a runDisney event as their first official race. Trybus shared that their races tend to skew higher among first-time runners. Perhaps part of the appeal is the awesome medal you receive upon finishing the race; Disney has paired their talent of making incredible collectibles with the runDisney races to fashion medals people are especially proud of.
“I was shocked at the number of people wearing their medals in the park,” Trybus said. “When you take something healthy for you like running and attach it to a passion (like Disney) or an achievement (like the medals), it offers a lot of power.”
And there have definitely been timeless memories made at runDisney events. Everything from the high of actually completing your first race to wedding proposals at the finish line, the gamut of emotional moments runs wide. Tina said the Princess Half-Marathon is one of her favorites to witness as people cross the finish line.
“The first one I watched was so emotional. People were holding hands as they crossed the finish line. They had a real sense of achievement — these women achieving something they didn’t think they could do.”
Trybus went on to explain how inspirational these races can be. “Some people enter a race hoping to run a certain distance and mark it off their bucket list. Now it’s become a lifestyle for them and that provides a lot of inspiration.”
It sure does, and I can’t wait to experience this with my own daughter this weekend.More On