For all my running endeavors this past year I’ve been called crazy, insane, over zealous, “special” and been asked,”Whyyyy?” as people give me that side ways look that running this much just isn’t quite right. After all I’ve logged four 5Ks, four half-marathons, a 4.5 mile drumstick dash and one full-marathon (see my schedule) in my 2010 season as a newbie runner. So what more is there? Well come January 2012 I will be just plain Goofy….as in Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL! Garsh!
What is this challenge you ask? Well it’s simple…
- First, arrive in sunny (hopefully) Orlando, FL.
- Second, travel to Disney World.
- Third, run the Disney Half-Marathon on Saturday morning.
- Next, wake up Sunday and double Saturday’s distance by running the Disney Full-Marathon.
- Finally, go to EPCOT for Churros and Dos Equis (not required, but fun!)
The prize? Not one, not TWO, BUT THREE count ’em T-H-R-E-E, three medals….Mickey, Donald & finally Goofy. Holy Cow!!! Or Holy Mouse, Duck and Dog in this case!! Now that is a lot of bling for two days of Disney fun!
So how does one train for something like this!?!? As luck would have it, Disney’s got you covered for this too! Former Olympian, world renown running coach and author, Jeff Galloway, has free training schedules (yep F-R-E-E, free) available for anyone on the runDisney.com website. There are separate training schedules for the half-marathon, full-marathon and Goofy Challenge…and a few other races at WDW as well!
The Goofy Challenge training schedule is a 28 week program and it is suggested that you’ve been running for six months prior to starting this program. I will finish my third half-marathon of 2011 on June 11th just a few weeks before I should start the 28 week program for the Goofy Challenge. I’m excited to start training for it! I used a Jeff Galloway program for the last half of my full-marathon training last year and had no trouble finishing my 1st full-marathon.
The major difference I see between a regular marathon training program and the Goofy Challenge training are back-to-back “long days” 6-8 weeks into the program. There are weekends where I will have a long run on Saturday followed by a long walk on Sunday. This prepares your body for two days of longer endurance bouts.
I like Jeff’s training program because unlike traditional running programs his training stresses the idea of recovery as a key component in training. Similar to a traditional program Jeff’s program builds distance for 2-3 weeks and then there is an “easy” week to give your body time to adapt before building again. The difference for example is that Jeff’s recovery week includes just a 3 mile weekend run after a 15 miler the previous week where a more traditional program might just drop back to 10 miles for the “easy” week. Jeff’s program really allows for more rest and recovery. This program also allows for you to have a weekend where you aren’t running all morning on Saturday! I might even be able to sleep in a little!
Like last year I will be running with the WDW Radio Running Team which raises money for the Make a Wish Foundation. We were able to raise enough money to grant a wish last year. Hopefully, we will do the same this coming January!
So, will you join me for The Goofy Challenge? How about the Half-Marathon or just the Full-Marathon? I’d love some company!