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Old 10-01-2012, 12:19 PM   #1
chanson2
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Need help/ideas with night before wdw half-marathon! (Big 5-0 bday!)

Hi all - I'm in need of ideas/helpful hints for my DH's first half marathon at WDW in Jan. The big issue is, he turns 50 the night before running the half, and I'd really like to plan a celebration/dinner, but being new to running, I'm not sure what is realistic... Do you eat a big dinner the night before a race? Are you in bed early? (that would leave out a fireworks cruise idea...) Are there certain foods/buffets to avoid? We are meeting up with friends, and I thought Germany is a fun place to dine, but is the food compatible with running the next day? I could wait and plan something the day after his birthday, after he's run, but the other family we're meeting is doing the Goofy, so they wouldn't be open that night.

So any ideas? What do most runners do the night before a race?
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Old 10-01-2012, 02:29 PM   #2
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How considerate you are to be planning something special for your DH and his big milestone.

The race on Saturday starts very early. Disney requires you to be in your corral even earlier so your DH will be getting on a bus by 4 a.m. on Saturday, standing around for quite awhile and then running 13.1 miles. Coupling that with sleeping poorly the night before the race -- it happens to all of us -- it doesn't make for any late celebration, i.e. fireworks.

What does your DH eat before a long training run? If he can eat a big meal and then run the next day, dinner might work. For many of us, a big meal the night before a race is the last thing you want.

If it was my spouse I would tell them to wait until after the race but is just me. Your friends who are doing the Goofy will be running Saturday and Sunday. You might ask them what they suggest as they know you and your DH better.

Good luck!
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Old 10-01-2012, 02:59 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by lisah0711 View Post
How considerate you are to be planning something special for your DH and his big milestone.

The race on Saturday starts very early. Disney requires you to be in your corral even earlier so your DH will be getting on a bus by 4 a.m. on Saturday, standing around for quite awhile and then running 13.1 miles. Coupling that with sleeping poorly the night before the race -- it happens to all of us -- it doesn't make for any late celebration, i.e. fireworks.

What does your DH eat before a long training run? If he can eat a big meal and then run the next day, dinner might work. For many of us, a big meal the night before a race is the last thing you want.

If it was my spouse I would tell them to wait until after the race but is just me. Your friends who are doing the Goofy will be running Saturday and Sunday. You might ask them what they suggest as they know you and your DH better.

Good luck!
Ditto all of this - are you all staying a few days after the races? If so, maybe a big celebration on Sunday or Monday? Everyone has their own fueling strategy, but for me it is a bland pasta dish or pizza with not too much on it (i.e. not a lot of veggies or meats) and in bed early. For the Princess a couple of years ago we drove off property to CiCi's for me to get my pizza on Obviously not a high brow special place to take a 50 y.o. birthday boy!

Maybe celebrate his birthday with a gift basket with some fun running goodies in it? The big mantra is nothing new on race day, which I am a firm believer in (made that mistake before!), but a new pair of his favorite running socks would probably be welcome and OK for "new" on race day since they'd be tried and true. Maybe make him a bib to pin on his back that says "it's my Birthday" or "Birthday Boy" or "Big 5-0" or something? I love wishing people happy birthdays or congratulations when I see them with some sort of special event identification on the course! (remember extra pins if you go this route!)

And yeah, he'll be wanting to go to bed wicked early.
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:31 PM   #4
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Runners will want to eat the main meal of the day at about lunchtime-ish with a very light dinner/snack and then it's off to an early bedtime. You'll be getting up about 2:00 to 2:30 AM. Make sure that whatever you do eat that day is normal, easy to digest food that you're used to - this is not the time to try new foods, over-indulge, have drinks, or eat anything too acidic or spicy. You most likely will be very hungry sometime that day after the race - we are always ravenous a couple of hours after the end of a big run like that. Perhaps hold off on the birthday bash dinner and make it a victory dinner as well.

Great way to celebrate a 50th birthday with a half marathon!
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:43 PM   #5
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Thanks for all the advice so far. Right now DH has only run 7 miles as his longest distance, in his training. I know he will be increasing in the next few months. So he's not really added any fuel to his runs, except for a regular granola bar and water. If you have any advice on foods, feel free! What does Disney provide during the race?
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Old 10-10-2012, 07:53 AM   #6
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BEST bet is to make a reservation Saturday Night to celebrate BOTH the big 5-0 and first half finish. Otherwise, you will really want to celebrate for lunch or breakfast.

The ideal trip into the Disney half is to arrive on Thursday. Hit the expo where you pick up your race bib and shirt. One would chill for the rest of the day, or do a light park tour. The primary focus for Thursday would be to stay hydrated, eat a fairly normal diet and get a GREAT night's sleep.

Friday would be much of the same. We try to encourage folks to eat a light dinner no later than mid afternoon to real early evening. Personally, it is a large breakfast with Goofy, then a light lunch and a small balanced meal around 4 for dinner. Again, the mission for the day is hydrate.

Hydration note... one should aways drink about half their weight in ounces daily. e.g. if one weighs 150, they should consume 75 oz of water. Caffeine and alcohol do not count into this total. One can tell if they are hydrating well coming into a race if their urine is clear to slightly colored.

The reason for the good nights sleep on Thursday is that Friday one will not sleep well. The excitement of the race, the early rise time (and early bed time) along with hotel sounds from others arriving after parks close) will make it tough to get sleep.

Once he gets up on Saturday, he will want to follow a tried unknown breakfast. What ever he has been doing pre-run in training should be followed on are morning. Nothing new. The fast food counters and food courts open at 2 am on race morning. I would encourage him to purchase things like bagels or other breadstuffs the day prior----just in case. You can use the toaster in the food area on race morning as well as get coffee, tea, etc.

The race will have water stops about every 1.5 miles. The map shows where they are... or this map approximates them. http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/fullscreen/4106815/ water and PowerAde will both be offered at each of these stops. The race hands up Clif Shots and Cliff Blocks (fuel) at about mile 10. I would suggest bring his own fuel and eating at the intervals he has rained at.
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Old 10-15-2012, 09:56 AM   #7
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Fueling before and after runs is important for optimum performance and recovery. The body starts to get depleted after one hour of endurance activity. Before and during, focus on easily digestible quick energy sources like gels and simple carbs. Within 20 minutes of finishing, replace lost electrolytres with drinks that contain a perfect blend of carbs to protein. Personally, Endurox works well for me or even chocolate milk if you're not allergic to dairy.
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Old 10-20-2012, 09:53 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by BRER
Fueling before and after runs is important for optimum performance and recovery. The body starts to get depleted after one hour of endurance activity. Before and during, focus on easily digestible quick energy sources like gels and simple carbs. Within 20 minutes of finishing, replace lost electrolytres with drinks that contain a perfect blend of carbs to protein. Personally, Endurox works well for me or even chocolate milk if you're not allergic to dairy.
I too am new to running and appreciate all the. Good advice. My first 1/2 marathon will be the Princess. Do they have stands selling the products you've mentioned at the parks? We will be flying in. (as a footnote, I'm 57 and decided to take my DD challenge and am loving the training)
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Old 10-24-2012, 04:48 AM   #9
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I too am new to running and appreciate all the. Good advice. My first 1/2 marathon will be the Princess. Do they have stands selling the products you've mentioned at the parks? We will be flying in. (as a footnote, I'm 57 and decided to take my DD challenge and am loving the training)
They'll have things throughout the half for you (there's a cream-like thing that seems icky, but has the things you need, that comes around mile 8 or so), and definitely they'll have water and gatorade all along the race route to keep you well hydrated. I'm not sure about what they give out at the full, but you'll know the cream thing I'm talking about because all of a sudden your feet will be sticking to the ground! People down them and then throw the packet down, leaving a sticky mess. All part of the race =)

My aunt ran the half with me right after she turned 50. She had never run a mile before she started training, and she loved the half! I'm sure you and DH will do great in both your races!

Like others suggested, you might be better off celebrating after his race versus trying to squeeze something in the evening before. Then it's double celebrating!
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Old 10-24-2012, 04:54 AM   #10
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This is what I'm talking about - http://www.clifbar.com/food/products_shot_gel/

They'll pass those out to you around mile 8. And they are sticky.
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Old 10-24-2012, 08:35 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by afnaechiquita

They'll have things throughout the half for you (there's a cream-like thing that seems icky, but has the things you need, that comes around mile 8 or so), and definitely they'll have water and gatorade all along the race route to keep you well hydrated. I'm not sure about what they give out at the full, but you'll know the cream thing I'm talking about because all of a sudden your feet will be sticking to the ground! People down them and then throw the packet down, leaving a sticky mess. All part of the race =)

My aunt ran the half with me right after she turned 50. She had never run a mile before she started training, and she loved the half! I'm sure you and DH will do great in both your races!

Like others suggested, you might be better off celebrating after his race versus trying to squeeze something in the evening before. Then it's double celebrating!
We are planning on LeCellier Friday night. We have an early afternoon flight out on Sunday so it looks like we'll have to run, shower, then go to the airport, but I'm just happy to do what I can. Thanks for the info about the cream thing. I probably would have avoided it not knowing what it was.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:13 PM   #12
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My plan the day before a big race is to eat a relatively early dinner (usually 4hours before I go to sleep) and that meal usually consists of lean protien and some carbs. It will not help you at all to eat bowls of pasta the night before a race.

Sushi is always my pre race choice, and at disney, we chose California Grill. The day before the event, you want to be off your feet as much as possible so I always recommend visiting the expo two days before the race if you can and almost certainly avoid the parks the day before. California Grill lets us save a days worth of park tickets by dining at a resort, but we make our reservations so that we can finish dinner and a small dessert in time to pay out our tab and watch wishes from the observation deck before heading back to our room. What a pre race night cap huh....Wishes!!!

Don't try and pack in 10 hours worth of sleep the night before the race, insetad try and get an extra hour each night leading up to the race and two nights before the race, make sure you get in at least 8 hours.

The day before just watch the fat intake. Fat, high fructose corny syrup, etc. can all cause GI ussues on race day so just think lean and clean. Alot of fresh fruit, granola, oatmeal, a sandwich, yogurt, salads, etc.

After the race be sure to allow for some down time. Maybe a pool swim or some hot tub depending on the weather and likely a nap at some point. Race day wake up will likely be before 4 am for alot of people so if you want to do any sort of celebrating that night, expect some down time during the day.
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:57 PM   #13
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My plan the day before a big race is to eat a relatively early dinner (usually 4hours before I go to sleep) and that meal usually consists of lean protien and some carbs. It will not help you at all to eat bowls of pasta the night before a race.

Sushi is always my pre race choice, and at disney, we chose California Grill. The day before the event, you want to be off your feet as much as possible so I always recommend visiting the expo two days before the race if you can and almost certainly avoid the parks the day before. California Grill lets us save a days worth of park tickets by dining at a resort, but we make our reservations so that we can finish dinner and a small dessert in time to pay out our tab and watch wishes from the observation deck before heading back to our room. What a pre race night cap huh....Wishes!!!

Don't try and pack in 10 hours worth of sleep the night before the race, insetad try and get an extra hour each night leading up to the race and two nights before the race, make sure you get in at least 8 hours.

The day before just watch the fat intake. Fat, high fructose corny syrup, etc. can all cause GI ussues on race day so just think lean and clean. Alot of fresh fruit, granola, oatmeal, a sandwich, yogurt, salads, etc.

After the race be sure to allow for some down time. Maybe a pool swim or some hot tub depending on the weather and likely a nap at some point. Race day wake up will likely be before 4 am for alot of people so if you want to do any sort of celebrating that night, expect some down time during the day.

Unless something has changed the California Grill will be closed for refurbishment when the PHM takes place. That was our first choice, but now we are going to Teppan Edo for a late (4:00) lunch and maybe a snack later in the evening on Saturday night.
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:09 AM   #14
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Yeah, the princess half marathon may be different, but the OP and I are racing marathon weekend in January, sorry if I was a little confusing.

If I eat an early lunch, my "dinner" is usually "brinner"..Either some eggs and oatmal, or some cereal.

Something filling, but not too much fat.
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Old 11-22-2012, 04:18 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by MRS AR

We are planning on LeCellier Friday night. We have an early afternoon flight out on Sunday so it looks like we'll have to run, shower, then go to the airport, but I'm just happy to do what I can. Thanks for the info about the cream thing. I probably would have avoided it not knowing what it was.
If you don't run training runs with Clif gels, I would most definitely avoid it on the race course. The last thing you want to do is try any new fuel on race day. As you start to increase your long runs, experiment with gels/beans/bloks to find what works for you. Trust me, it is NOT fun to spend 10-15 min of your 1st half marathon in the porta-pottie!
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