7 Tips for a Worry-Free RunDisney Wine and Dine Race Start

RunDisney Wine and Dine

It’s almost here! It’s almost here!! The RunDisney Wine and Dine race series is almost here!!! The races that kick off another an amazing year of RunDisney events is almost here! 

Are you planning to run any of the RunDisney Wine and Dine races this year? If so, let me be the first to give you congrats!

As with most big events, the RunDisney Wine and Dine races require a lot of prep work. You don’t want to head into the race weekend, and certainly not race morning, unprepared. Instead, you want to make sure you know everything important before you toe the line. Especially knowing all the details on how to make your race morning a success!

While the suggestions below are specifically tailored to the RunDisney Wine and Dine 1/2 marathon, the details can apply to all races that occur over the race weekend. 

Therefore, sit back, stretch out and fill your brain with the knowledge on how to have a successful RunDisney Wine and Dine race morning! 

1. Get To the RunDisney Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon Start Area Early

As recommended in my previous post regarding the RunDisney start areas, you want to make sure you arrive at the RunDisne Wine and Dine race early. The parking lot areas where the events are held tend to become very crowded, very quickly. The earlier you arrive, the easier time you will have at getting to the bag check area, the porta-potties and even to a few character meet-and-greets.

Plus, when you arrive early, you will ensure that you are ahead of a majority of other runners. This means avoiding a majority of the RunDisney Wine and Dine race day traffic on the roads! As the start time pulls closer, more runners in cars and buses fill up the roads. Add in some road construction and the need for unloading said buses and cars and you’ve got yourself a recipe for very slow travel.

In addition to beating the crowds, both in the parking lot and on the roads, arriving early to the events is going to bring you peace of mind. Peace of mind that you won’t get stuck trying to arrive at the RunDisney event.

RunDisney Wine and Dine

2. Bring a Blanket for the Start Area

If you took the advice above about making sure to arrive to the start area early, you might find that you have a little bit of time on your hands. You’ll want to spend that time sitting down, relaxing and stretching, instead of roaming about. The less time you spend on your feet the better!

However, when you sit down, you’ll notice the ground is hard and, possibly, cold. Not the most comfortable place to sit when you are trying to keep your muscles loose! To combat the hard ground, be sure to bring along a blanket or some type of old ‘throw-away’ clothes you can sit on. Something you won’t mind leaving behind and that can act as a barrier between you and the hard ground. 

Blankets are my go-to as they will cover a larger surface. The blankets will create a space for you to be able to stretch out, do a little yoga or just chill as you want for the race to begin! Again, just make sure it’s something you don’t mind leaving behind.

Inflatable Beds for the Win

Once upon a time I was at a RunDisney start line and saw a crazy looking contraption. It looked like an inflatable boat and a hammock all rolled into one! This crazy looking device turned out to be a sweet inflatable bed and I think it made the user super comfortable. 

Therefore, if you will have non-running friends at the start line and you’re looking for comfort, bring along one of these cool inflatable ‘beds’. Preferably bring this only if you have someone you can hand the inflatable bed off to before the start of the race. You don’t want to carry this with you during the race. Due to its size, you probably WON’T be able to carry it with you!

Found here on amazon, these little beds are easy to inflate and deflate! After watching their quick video, you will notice that to inflate the bed you run in a quick circle, filling it up with air. Yes, you might look a little crazy running around trying to inflate this contraption, but it will save your body from the hard ground. Determine before you do the race if a blanket is or isn’t going to be enough for you, and then take a look at this option if not!

3. Bring Breakfast and/or Snacks Before the RunDisney Wine and Dine Race

Before any long race, it is important to eat breakfast or, at least, a hearty snack. With a super early wakeup time (as early as 2:30 am!), you might not have time to eat a decent prerace, carb-filled meal. Or, you might not be ready to eat something just a few hours past midnight! 

Instead, don’t worry whether or not you can get down the necessary carbs before you have to catch your RunDisney Wine and Dine bus. When you are laying out your race outfit, layout your race breakfast as well. Make sure it is something that you have practiced eating in the past. There is a ‘golden rule’ on race day, nothing new on race morning, and that includes your breakfast!

If you plan to stay on property, most Walt Disney World Resorts will have bananas and, most likely, bagels available for guest purchase. Pick both up (along with some peanut butter!) before you call it a night and you will be all set for the morning.

Just be sure to put the items in your RunDisney Wine and Dine gear check bag before you leave the room and not leave them in the hotel refrigerator. Just speaking from experience! 

4. Bring Along Layers of Clothing for the Start Area

Typically the weather for most RunDisney events is warm. Or at least it feels warm once you get moving during your race. The start area, however, can be rather chilly! To combat the lack of sunshine at the pre-dawn start, be sure to bring along a few layers of ‘throw-away’ clothing. 

What is throw away clothing? It’s clothing you don’t necessarily plan to run in and don’t mind if you never see it again. It’s stuff you head to a ‘thrift store’ to purchase before your race starts with the sole purpose of throwing on the ground. Literally, it’s clothing you plan to throw away (from your body).

Personally, I look for items that are easy to pull on and off. Nothing that will involve taking off my running shoes or that could possibly get stuck in my hair. Trust me, you don’t want to worry about retying your shoes or having your head stuck in a shirt at the start line. I’ve been there before a full marathon. It’s not fun. Save yourself the trouble and make sure you are able to easily put on and off the clothing you plan to use. 

Ideally, you will throw these clothing items off before your race even starts. However, in the event that you take them off while on the course try to leave them along the side. By leaving them someplace obvious you can help Cast Members spot them in order to pick the pieces up. 

RunDisney Wine and Dine

5. Head to the GEar Check Area Early

Once you make it to the general start area for your RunDisney Wine and Dine event, you’re going to want to sniff out the GEar Check area. The GEar check area is where you will be dropping off the items you want to have post-race, but don’t want to hold onto while you are running. This includes items such as dry clothes, fresh shoes, and snacks. 

Make sure to find the GEar Check area early. Lines at the RunDisney start area can get lengthy and you don’t want to find yourself stuck in line. Instead, make the GEar Check line one of the first lines you join. My usual game plan is to stop at the porta-potties and then head over to the GEar Check line. 

Pro Tip

When you’re packing up your GEar Check bag before heading to the RunDisney Wine and Dine 1/2 marathon start area, make sure you take stock on which items you want to keep with you for your run. Have those items easy to pull out as you are dropping off your GEar check bag. The main thing that comes to mind is chapstick. I’ve often left mine in the GEar check bag, only to want it a little bit later. 

RunDisney Wine and Dine

6. Get In Your RunDisney Wine and Dine Corral Early

If you had a chance to read my review of the 2018 RunDisney Wine and Dine 1/2 marathon, you know that I was in corral A. Being able to start at the front of the race allows you to have a little more wiggle room before the rest of the corrals start. However, whether you are in Corral A or Corral H, be sure to get to your corral early.

In 2018 the RunDisney Wine and Dine race began at 5:30am. With an early start time, Corral A closed a 1/2 hour earlier. That meant you needed to be in Corral A by 5 am. If you weren’t? Well, welcome to Corral B, because the RunDisney race day volunteers weren’t going to let you into Corral A! Regardless of the fact that you couldn’t hear the final announcement and were in the porta-potties at 5 am. Consider yourself told! Be in that Corral A by 5 am! Be sure to give yourself enough leeway for getting into all the other corrals as well. 

RunDisney Wine and Dine

7. Listen to the RunDisney Start Line Announcements

Speaking of not being able to hear things…

As mentioned above, I had a tricky time hearing the announcement that my corral was closing when it did. Why was this, you might be wondering? It’s not that the announcements aren’t loud or pipped over the loudspeakers to the RunDisney Wine and Dine staging area. No, they were both loud and sufficiently pipped. It’s that the ‘staging area’ is large! Really large. 

So large, that if you are doing any type of warm-up you might find yourself far away from the corral area. Or, you might be hitting up a porta-potty at the last minute. Either way, there are reasons you might find yourself away from the typical auditory range of the early morning RunDisney Wine and Dine announcements.

As the start time approaches, in order to make sure you are near the stage where announcements are made. Especially as the clock draws closer to 5 am. That way you can be sure not to miss anything!

Conclusion to 7 Tips for a Worry-Free RunDisney Wine and Dine Race Start

There ya go! 7 tips for a worry-free RunDisney Wine and Dine race start. Race morning can bring up nerves and worries you didn’t even know existed. By being prepared and having the little details planned out you’ll be able to stay cool, calm and collected. While there are sure to be a number of uncertainties that you won’t be able to control at the start line, it’s nice to know what to expect for at least a few details. 

Are you a race newbie with more questions? Leave a comment below and we can help you out.

Or are you a race veteran with lots of experience? Share your favorite race morning tips in the comments below so everyone can benefit from your knowledge. 

Now that you know how to have a successful RunDisney Wine and Dine race start, be sure to read this review of the 2018 RunDisney Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon. Then, learn all about the runDisney ‘Start Line’ right here and the RunDisney ‘Finish Line’, right here

Is there anything else you’d like to know about RunDisney events? Leave a comment below and we will get you an answer!

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