Running and vacations don’t usually go hand in hand, but that old school thinking has come under attack lately and there are a few companies doing what they can to change your thinking. The new trend of booking a race and tying it into your vacation plans has become the thing to do and I LOVE IT!
Booking yourself into a race ‘out of town’ has a tendency to deepen your commitment to your training. Booking a race that your whole family can come and cheer you on? Well that is a memory you won’t soon forget!
Here’s the beauty of a ‘racecation’.
- You get the physical challenge of doing your run.
- You get the post run relaxation in style.
- You share it all with your family.
- Your family gets to celebrate your huge accomplishment and have their own fun! “Win-Win”
I just completed runDisney’s Dopey Challenge as part of their Marathon Weekend. 4 days of running for a total of 48.6 miles!
Getting ready to get my runDisney Dopey mugshot
We were fortunate to stay at the stunning Waldorf Astoria Orlando as part of their own style of celebrating #MarathonWeekends. The Waldorf and Hilton Bonnet Creek guests are treated to a race weekend like no other.
Let’s start with having a “race concierge”—whhaat??!! Yes, someone dedicated to answer all of your race and stay questions. They made sure you knew the bus times, the send off party, bus pick up locations and knew them well beyond ‘looking in a race brochure’ for the right answers. For anyone nervous or for first time runners, this is such a great service to have. If you needed things, they were there to help get you the answers. It was such a great add-on!
We had to get up at 3am everyday to make the bus over to the race site. You know, make-up, hair, primping and the such don’t happen magically even when your hanging your hat at Disney World! The runs started at 530am (so painful!!) Do you know what wakes you up at that unearthly hour…a pre race send off party!!! That’s right, they give the runners a send off party!!!!
Note: this is 3am and the staff are fired up for us!!
Before the half marathon and full marathon, you could get your coffee/tea, water, fruit, bagel, granola bars, muffins. You name it they had it! Take a bar for the bus ride or to eat while you’re waiting in your corral.
Lots of pre race fuel options!
coffee…need I say more?!
Every kind of tea you could imagine #options
Water options – flat or sparkling!
They had staff their cheering, dancing and helping us wake up to get our game faces on to run the races! The staff and their energy were out of this world and it was so appreciated at that time of the morning!!
Its not a 3am pre race party until someone puts on a blue wig!!
The transportation to and from the races is also provided as part of #MarathonWeekends – there are no long lines or waiting for the 4th or 5th bus outside. You wait in the lobby have some coffee and water then get on the bus. It’s all very civilized…it was wonderful!
They had this awesome banner to do pics in front of!!
You can always be number one with Marathon Weekends.
This is where I spent my post run time after the temperature went up…ahhhhhhh
Blue skies and warm water.
I wish I had longer to visit, I would’ve loved to been able to get a round of golf in. This is great option for the golfer in your family and makes everyone’s stay more memorable.
My girls really got into enjoying this “racecation”. They HAD to wear the robes and slippers!! After a long day at the parks they needed to unwind, haha!
The race experience provided by The Waldorf Astoria Orlando and the Hilton Bonnet Creek is by far the best I’ve had the pleasure to take part in. Beautiful accommodations (I slept like a champ), amenities (amazing golf, pool, lazy river, spa) incredible on property restaurants (Oscars for breakfast was spectacular).
One other option that deserves a notable mention is the in room coffee. Yes, the in room coffee…Nespresso machine. The coffee addict in me was beyond thrilled to have a really good cup of coffee and not leave my room. Sometimes the attention to finer details is all that it takes.
If you are looking at booking a future runDisney race, you have to consider staying on property at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando or Hilton Bonnet Creek.
You will not be disappointed and it will be an experience that will be hard to top!
Now I lay me down to sleep…with my medals and aching feet!
4 days, 48.6 miles, 6 medals = incredible time.
Thanks to everyone who cheered me on and supported all the runners. I can’t tell you how awesome it is when strangers cheer and ‘holla’ your effort.
Marathon Weekends are available for these runDisney events:
- Princess Half Marathon Weekend
- Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend
- Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend.
Is this kind of selfie called a ‘mousie’?
Even if you’re not running a race, these are fantastic on property resorts and I highly recommend you book your stay here.
Full Disclosure: The Waldorf Astoria Orlando graciously hosted me for two nights. I was not required to write this blog post. I wrote this because it was one of the best running/racecation experiences I have had. If you are a regular reader, you know I only write about what I believe in and what I can fully support. I plan on booking another racecation with the Waldorf Orlando / Hilton Bonnet Creek because of what they do as a part of their #MarathonWeekends