Captain America is my favorite. And I’ve been loving all things Avengers lately, except you, Ironman. I don’t know what it is about you, but I side-eye you. So I was thrilled when runDisney announced the Infinity Gauntlet Challenge. 19.3 miles in a weekend, sure why not? I mean, it was the Captain America 10K for crying out loud. I had to do it for Steve Rogers. This was my first 10K and runDisney Challenge at Disneyland. Two words – Loved it! This has to be one of the best courses of a runDisney race.
Side note. One of my favorite things about runDisney races are the costumes. They’re just fun to see and I don’t feel so bad when someone passes me, because I’m all ohhhh, cool costume. Here are Patty and Nicole. They are rock star costumers, but Nicole’s version of Agent Coulson and Lola from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is ridiculous and awesome.
The first two-ish miles start outside of the parks and in the streets of Anaheim. I actually really appreciated this, because the starts of runDisney races can be tight and cramped. Sometimes I feel like I never have room to just run and am constantly weaving in and out of people or just have to shuffle behind the crowds (I’m looking at you, Princess Half Marathon).
I felt really good starting the race and was able to find a good path to just run. There was plenty of room to find a groove. I’m a pretty middle-of-the-pack runner and found a good groove at 10-ish minute miles. Just as you’re warming up, you hit the theme parks and have 4 miles of pure bliss. The scenery, the energy, and the crowd support from Guests and from cast members were incredible. My pace was good, and I wanted to just keep running, but I got seduced by photo opps and character stops. I just can’t help it.
I loved that they turned on World of Color. The nice thing, too, is that there were photographers at some of the landmarks in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure like World of Color, Cars Land, and Sleeping Beauty Castle. So if you bought a Marathon Foto Package, you could get some awesome high resolution photos or if you were like me, you stopped for a second and snapped a photo.
I like having a game plan, and it’s a little hard when it comes to character stops, because you don’t know who will be on the course. I get that. Things happen and you can’t guarantee a character. My plan was always stopping for Cap. I mean, I was Falcon, so I had to get a pic with his buddy. Well I got a little sidetracked with Hawkeye, got a picture with him, and then found my boyfriend, Captain America. Looking back, I really wish I wouldn’t have stopped for Hawkeye, because the same 4 characters were on the course for the 5K, the 10K, and the Half Marathon. I could be wrong and could have missed someone, but I was a little peeved. I love Captain America, Hawkeye, Thor, and Black Widow, but really? The same ones for every race? I’m sure there are licensing issues and other factors, but throw me a mouse here. Add a little Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse action for me, please. Or throw on an Ant-Man mask on Donald Duck and call it good. A cape even! I know not everyone cares about characters, but I was a little disappointed.
Cap was at about 5.2 miles, so less than a mile to go and you’re across the finish line! This race felt like the time just flew by. Water stops were plentiful. Since you were in the parks for a lot of the race, there were plenty of real bathrooms if you needed them. This was just an overall fantastic race. So if you’re looking for a challenge after a 5K, this is the race for you. Are you prepared to accept the mission? As one of my friends said, “Steve Rogers would be proud.”