Trying to keep it up (and getting lost) in The Magic Kingdom

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

So this running thing is working out a lot better than expected so far. I never thought I'd say this but I am enjoying running. I actually look forward to my runs and when I feel too tired to run at 5:30am, I make it up by running in the evening so things are looking good.

Recently I managed to run three miles non stop. I had only done this once before in my life a loooong time ago so I was pretty excited about it. Not long after I had to travel for a work related convention. Since it was going to be held in the Yacht Club Resort in Walt Disney World I figured I would bring the family (minus the little one. She is still too young and fragile) and visit two parks. Excluding the convention, this would pretty much be a weekend thing.

Feeling pretty good about my achievements (sure, I'm still 23 miles short of a marathon but progress is progress!) I was trying to figure out how to sneak in a run during the trip. Being a Disney Parks veteran, I was well aware that a lot of walking and sweating were going to go on during the trip but I was aware that a lot of eating high-calorie food was in the cards as well. Plus, I was running at a pretty consistent schedule and was afraid that missing a whole week of runs would begin the downward spiral towards not running at all. So I worked in an early morning run the day after we arrived in Florida.

The Disney web site lists that one of the Yatch Club's amenities is a 0.8 mile jogging trail. Sure enough, during a reception the day we arrived, I noticed a bunch of people running. The back of the Hotel shares a lake with another Disney Resort, The Boardwalk. It seemed that the "jogging trail" was basically a loop between the Boardwalk's "boardwalk" and my Hotel's own marina. It looked shorter than 0.8 miles so maybe there was more to it. Whatever, I would figure it out the next morning.

At 5:30am on Friday, I got dressed and went out for a run. Right at the start, I noticed that in the excitement to leave I left my cell phone (which I use to track my progress with an app called "Map my Run") and my IPod. Oh well, no music today. The new scenery will be my inspiration. In hindsight, I should have gone back for the phone. It would have been very useful in my little adventure.

I start jogging and it becomes quickly apparent that this jogging trail is not really marked. (very un-Disney like, they usually clearly label everything) After crossing a bridge that connects The Boardwalk and Yatch Club I find a fork in the road. One road leads to the Boardwalk, the other... I don't know. Thinking there should be more to this trail than what I saw, I took "the road less traveled." I mean, come on! I'm in Disney World! Its not like I was going to get lost. Right?

Well... I got lost.

I ended up on the back side of the Boardwalk Hotel, on a small road I don't think is meant for traffic other than Disney vehicles. From there I ended up in Epcot Resorts Boulevard which is the main road that connects all Epcot Resorts (as the name implies) and at 6am is filled with service trucks supplying the hotels. From there I ended up in a parking lot, which ended up being the Boardwalk's and from there I ran to an area that was for Disney employees only but because it was so early had no actual Disney employees. (which I'm sure would have helped me out) Now, I'm running all this time. I finally stopped when I saw the "Cast Members Only" sign. From there I walked into the Boardwalk's lobby and- at last- into the actual Boardwalk, where I started running again and finished the intended loop. Despite all that, I was feeling good so I ran the loop again (the correct loop this time) and finished in my resort's back door.

Later at home, I figured out my whole little ordeal using Google. First, it turns out that the jogging trail that looked short to me is, in fact, 0.8 miles. Good for me trying to second guess Disney. Second, Two loops of the trail works out to 1.6 miles which would have been enough to maintain my schedule. Because of my little mishap however, I ended up running 2.2 miles so I ran more and burned more calories. YAY! A small victory I guess but you got to look at the positive people! LOL

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