Dopey Challenge 2017: Day 3

On Friday, the evening before the half marathon, Run Disney issued a warning that the race on Day 3 might be cancelled due to inclement weather conditions. But as runners, we often disregard the possibility of a cancellation. So that evening, after watching some evening news, I got my outfits ready and went to bed early in preparation for the next day’s race. However, I was tossing and turning throughout the whole night, restless from the sounds of booming thunder and flashes of lightning peeking through the hotel curtains.

When my alarm went off at 3am, I eagerly jumped out of bed, changed into my preselected outfit and was ready to tackle this race! Minutes before heading out, I checked my email. An email had come through from Run Disney issuing a race cancellation due to the hazard of lightning. But I looked out the window and the lightning seemed to have stopped.

At that moment, I couldn’t decide whether to go back to bed. I woke my husband up and asked him a million times if the race was actually cancelled, and he confirmed that it was indeed. I think it was the first time in Dopey history that one of the races had been cancelled. Disappointed, I changed back into pj’s and went back to bed. It was hard to fall back asleep again.

It was a windy and rainy morning, but perhaps the weather was not menacing enough to warrant a race cancellation. In any case, to my surprise, many runners set up their own “half marathon” and ran around one of the Disney hotels. Others ran on the treadmills in their hotel gyms. Many did not give in to the idea of not racing. Great runners’ spirit!

As for myself, I ended up staying in – in retrospect, I wish I had run to complete the real Dopey distance (unofficially).

My husband and I did not do much except grab lunch. It was honestly kind of a waste of a day. I went through a roller coaster of emotions. From why did they cancel to finally accepting the decision. By late afternoon, I was already re-focusing my attention on the final day of Dopey, which was the marathon.

We stayed in and made our own dinner. What else but pasta again?! This was the 4th day in a row, and I was definitely sick from pasta-loading. If there was one more day of eating pasta, I would really never touch pasta again!

So that was the Dopey 3rd day. Life is full of surprises…and for me, certainly this was one of them. It didn’t matter that I planned everything to a tee the night before because despite this, can never predict good old Mother Nature.

So, the Half Marathon medal was something I was NOT proud of, as I had not earned it. This Dopey Challenge for me felt incomplete. As some runners said, day 3 should have been called the ” Grumpy” challenge!

I definitely felt less accomplished than previous years of Dopey. Luckily I had experienced the full Dopey challenge twice in 2015 & 2016. Otherwise, I really would be left feeling extremely let-down.

Onto the final day…from Grumpy to Dopey!




Running bib signed by former US Olympian Jeff Galloway


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