Star Wars Dark Side 10k

Summary of the Dark Side 10k at Walt Disney World!

Onto the next race! Dark Side 10k. 10ks are probably my favorite distance – not nearly as demanding as a half, but long enough to enjoyably last (5ks end so quickly!). If you’re looking at a runDisney 10k, this is the first distance to start having pacers. They start after everyone else has, and maintain a 16 minute mile average (so the further up you are, the more cushion you have). runDisney recommends training to a 15mm. I’ve started right in front of the pacers before – as long as you train, you’re fine! But be aware of your time as you wait in line for photos or restrooms, because that really can eat up your time. As with all runDisney races, there are characters to see before and after the race, so you don’t totally miss out if you don’t have time to stop. For the 10k, Dad and I only stopped at one character spot and that was fine!

I ended up running the 10k with my Dad, and we had a blast! Onto the photos.

This was at the expo a couple days prior – with an illustration of the medal we’d be earning! Praetorian Guards ftw (we knew ye so little).

Dad and I at the pre-race area!

The course started in the Magic Kingdom parking lot, so the first few miles were just road – remember that Photopass is only in the parks and resorts, so if you’re on the highway don’t be surprised if you don’t see them for awhile! We saw our first ones as we entered Hollywood Studios.

The man behind me is amazing. No idea who he is. But amazing. (That’s half the fun of Photopass – seeing who makes it into your photos!)

Running down Hollywood Blvd! You may notice the large amount of tissues nearby – the cast members are amazing and hand them out there which is so nice (my nose runs when I…run…) but uh. There are some litterbugs, ha!

We then ran out of Hollywood Studios and through the sidewalk that connects HS to the Epcot resorts. A fair warning: there’s a good chance you’ll bottleneck here. That’s why it’s important to train your pace, because ones the pacers get to bottlenecks like this they have to speed up after to maintain that 16 mm minimum. The inaugural Dark Side 10k, the bottleneck was so bad I reached up to 19 mm! It hasn’t been as bad since, but keep it in mind. Then we got to run along the Boardwalk, which has special significance to me (my husband and I had our reception there). Love running it, especially as the sun is rising!

Then it’s on to World Showcase. Behold, me scooting through the UK pavilion.

Scooting through the Canada pavilion.

Then it was time to leave the World Showcase, up through the main bridge towards Future World! Seeing Spaceship Earth and knowing you’re almost at the end is always a great feeling.

Our one character stop! Had to stop by the Stormie.

Last shot in Epcot!

Now out of Epcot, running towards the parking lot where the finish line is.

Behold, a smiling photo of me. I usually start grinning like mad once I see that finish line!

Crossing the finish line!

Dad and I crossing together!

Medal selfie!  These medals were, I think, the heaviest medals I’ve ever received!

We did it!

Then it was back to the expo! Geoff was running the half the next day, so we went to the expo to pick up his stuff. I got my photo with my medal, in front of the 10k banner.

Selfies in front of the half marathon sign!

Expos with Geoff.

Once again, that Imperial Probe Droid photo spot! This time, without a light saber. Tragic.

Some shots from the merchandise area of the expo. I realized the expo was the first time seeing unmasked Kylo on banners (not including his unmasked figures, but just…around). I was psyched.

The new Supreme Leader is full of inspirational quotes.

STORMIES!

And…Jabba. Because why not.

After the expo (completely with a breeze that flatteringly blew back my hair~) we were onto lunch with the parents!

We stopped by Wilderness Lodge for lunch.

Okay so I didn’t do a ton of food photos but – this cupcake. What on earth. This is amazing. (It’s a campfire!)

Then it was back to the resorts. We took a quick walk around. The All Star resorts aren’t super intricately themed (hello, value resorts) but it still had some cute stuff.

Nutcracker area.

HERBIE! This was taken for my friend Casey, whose love of Herbie is just adorbs. This was the Herbie used in the parade!

B’daww.

More Nutcracker.

And the hat! And with that, we collapsed in a heap and took a nap.

And a short video of some clips taken during the 10k:

Hope this helps give an overview of the 10k (especially the Dark Side).  The 10ks are always my favorite!  Next up I’ll be writing about the final race, the half marathon.

 

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