Woo hoo, it's my favorite race weekend! This was my third year participating in the Dark Side races and my third consecutive Dark Side 5K. I signed up for the challenge on the first day of registration, but I waited on the 5K. It eventually sold out and I had huge regret for not getting in. I ended up snagging a late no-obligation bib from a travel agent just a few weeks before race day.
I picked up my bibs and t-shirts at the expo on Thursday. Since I ran the 2018 Star Wars Virtual Half Marathon, I picked up the medal and got my wristband for the Kessel Run Challenge. There were some photo ops set up at the expo, which was nice.
I ran this race as a lost USS Discovery (Star Trek) medical officer, pairing a sublimated Star Trek Discovery Uniform t-shirt with a white Sparkle Skirt and a DIY DISCO visor. The polyester costume t-shirt was a bit heavy, non-moisture-wicking style, so I wore it over a white long-sleeve tech shirt for comfort.
The course was the typical WDW 5K run through Epcot.
Training & Goals
Training was a whole lotta nothing for this weekend. All of my runs in April have been races! And after my fall and suspected fractured/bruised rib(s) at Colt Creek on the 14th, I was going to take it really easy.
Race Day: April 20, 2018
I left home at 2:40AM. I hoped to be able to knock out all of the photo ops on the first day so I didn't have to leave home too early for the 10K and half. I had the car parked at about 3:30AM and went immediately to the photo ops, but I didn't have time for everyone. I was kind of shocked -- I got to the Dopey 5K around the same time and could get all six characters, no problem.
I headed to corral C at about 5:15AM and was able to snake my way to the front. We were sent off in mini-waves as runDisney has been doing for the last few race weekends. It was a cool 59°F with a oppressive 100% humidity when I started my race at 5:46AM.
Mile 1: 11:38
I felt okay. I hadn't run since Chimpathon on Sunday, trying to give myself a rest after my fall. My ribs hurt a bit when I was running but being in a huge Disney race environment was an excellent distraction.
Mile 2: 12:23
As the crowd thinned out I slowed down my pace a bit more. I ran by all of the photo ops: the Emperor's chair; Chewie; Stormtroopers in front of Spaceship Earth; Ezra and Sabine. There weren't any new characters or ops out for the 5K and that was a bit of a disappointment.
Mile 3: 15:52
More running through Epcot, with a bit more walking mixed in. Almost done!
The Last Bit: 31:51*
We exited Epcot via backstage just east of Spaceship Earth, per usual. And there they were, unexpectedly, a bunch of 501sties and friends. These guys didn't attend the first two Dark Side 5K races, so this was an awesome surprise. A fun half hour long surprise!
After the Race
The backdrop characters were out again afterwards, just like always, but I didn't linger. After getting my medal, runDisney box, banana and water, I headed home. Friday's still a work day, after all.
GPS time: 1:11:44 (untimed race)
Race Amenities: Cotton unisex t-shirt, First Order Executioner medal, usual Disney goodness
*With all the bobbing and weaving of a runDisney race, my GPS usually ends up going significantly over the race distance. For this 3.1 mile race my Garmin gave me 3.49 miles.
Report written April 25, 2018