Save Your Sanity at Princess Half Weekend, Part I: Pre-Race

Take it from some Princesses who have been there, done that: some things about PHM weekend will just get under your skin.  Some people will just ignore race etiquette (or other general niceties and politeness!).  Some places will be crazy crowded.  Some things just won’t go your way.  BUT…we’ve got some tips to help you get through, around, and past all that so that you may have the BEST WEEKEND EVER!! 🙂

Part I: Pre-Race Tips


Things might not be perfect, but they could be worse!!
Courtesy Pocket Princesses, Amy Mebberson.

Step 1: Breathe.  There are over 20,000 participants at PHM race weekend.  You are going to run into things, people, situations that frustrate you.  Remember that you are there to run like a princess—which means handling one’s self with grace and poise, not running around with a sense of entitlement to everything race and expo related.

Step 2: No whining.  Despite the fact that that blue t-shirt might be sold out, despite the fact that you’re in a later corral than you want, despite the fact that you’re mile time is slower than you’d hoped, despite the fact that Splash Mountain is closed AGAIN, despite the fact that the weather is too hot/cold/wet/cloudy/sunny…you are running, and you are at DisneyWorld.  On this very same day, many of us are NOT running – due to injury, due to work, due to finances, due to kids – and NOT at DisneyWorld…so NO whining.  All things considered, your life is pretty darn good right now.  Keep your complaints in perspective – #firstworldproblems.  Or maybe #disneyworldproblems.

Step 3: Make a new friend.  Personal space isn’t really a thing during PHM weekend, so just embrace it.  You will be squished at the expo, on the bus, in the corrals, on the course.  Instead of whining or trying to maintain your own “bubble,” choose to meet a fellow princess and make a new friend.  In fact, your new friend might even prove to be an ally: you could divide and conquer at the expo, one of you picking up race packets and one of you getting in line for merch, or you could take pictures of each other and have some nice photos instead of 1 million selfies!


Is it REALLY worth a meltdown over a pair of runDisney New Balance shoes?
Courtesy Pocket Princesses, Amy Mebberson.

Step 4: Be OK with the expo leftovers.  Unless you are really married to buying one specific item, it’s not worth it to go to the expo on day 1.  If you wait until mid-day, day 2, there will still be lots of cute souvenir tees in your size, and you won’t have to wait in epic lines or fight the crowd.  The same photo opps will be there, the same vendors will be there, and you will STILL spend too much money, we guarantee it.

Step 5: If you opt to do the expo on opening morning, be strategic, but inclusive.  Grab the things you like and then cull it down while you wait in line.  There will ALWAYS be someone who is willing to take it off of your hands.  Also, don’t be tied to one size or even gender.  Be open minded – we have purchased shirts in both smalls and mediums and mens shirts, depending on availability.

Step 6:  If you are staying in a hotel outside of the Disney resorts, confirm (several times) that there is a race shuttle, how much it is, when time it leaves and where the pick ups and drop off spots are.  This will save you a TON of aggravation…especially post-race when you can’t find your shuttle bus stop amidst all the recovering Princesses and their loved ones.  Trust us on this.

…Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Part II: Running & Post-Race Tips!


3 thoughts on “Save Your Sanity at Princess Half Weekend, Part I: Pre-Race

  1. This is exactly what I needed to read right now! I’m literally on my way to the expo right now and will probably get there about 2 hours after it opens. I’m definitely trying to get a few specific things but I think they should still have my size so I’m just trying to not stress about the long lines I’m about to face! It’s my first Disney race so all advice is appreciated! I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s post!

  2. Pingback: Angels Baseball Foundation 5K, Hollywood Half Marathon and Beyond | Why I runDisney

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