runDisney Princess half marathon-training advice and registration help

I’m hoping some runDisney liners here can help me with some questions I have about the Princess half marathon.

My backstory in short:
I finished the virtual Star Wars half marathon and that gave me the courage to even think I could participate in a half marathon. I used to be quite active but some major surgeries, health issues, taking care of my family, and my sedentary job have made me a couch potato. Just finishing the half marathon (be it virtual I still accomplished it!) was a huge feat for me. The next obvious step would be a race at Disney. I thought the Princess half marathon would be a great start and allow plenty of training time.
Alas, as I’m researching I see that this is the most popular one for beginners to try first and that it sells out very fast!

Here are my questions:

  1. Can buying an annual pass (this would benefit me anyway as I plan to be in the parks after the race and a future vacation) help me in registering? Or do you pros just use the travel agencies? If the travel agency, which is your favorite?

  2. I read on another thread some encouraging tips for starting to run. I’m currently starting the couch to half marathon plan on the site. I’m looking into Galloway training. What is your go to training program? I know I’m out of shape but any advice I would really really appreciate!

  3. Do you ever have your family run the races too? I know my three kids would want to participate even if they can only do the 5K or 10K. My DH not so much. How do you logistically fit it all in during that weekend? Do you make it a vacation or a long weekend event?

TIA for all your advice and tips! This has been on my bucket list for awhile and I’m really excited!

Do you know if the princess half has a time cutoff? If so, what is it? I would also like to do the princess half, but I am colossally slow! I have completed 9 half’s and not one was under 3 hours…

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16 minute/mile

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The pacing requirement is 16- which is about 4.5mph on the treadmill or finishing within 3:30. With the virtual I did a couple of intervals of jogging and walking. But after 8 miles I was really tired! So I fast walked the rest of my miles and still had time for a potty break and water breaks. I walked in my huge neighborhood that is very hilly so I’m hoping the flattish course around WDW would shave off some time if I’m training in my 'hood this spring, summer, and fall.

I’m debating signing up for a 10K to get a better corral placement. But I think registration opens for AP holders end of April and May for general public. I may not have time to train for that adequately enough to actually better my placement for the Princess run. I wonder if I can add my placement time later to my registration? I’ll have to research that.

I’ve found Magical Miles by Megan Biller recommened on you tube. Thinking about that book too.

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runDisney-type liner here. I caught the bug back in 2012, and keep going back. I’m 4x Dopey, among other things.

Answers to your questions:

  1. AP holders get early access to a limited number of race slots. They are often sold out before regular registration. Some people like using a TA to get their bib, because a TA can often transfer it if you can’t go last minute, but you generally have to book an on-property stay with them as well. Most of the races aren’t in the 30-minute sell-out category anymore, but if you’re antsy, being ready to go at 11:55 AM ET on the day of opening is the way to go. I’ve never missed getting in by being ready to “rope-drop registration”.

  2. I use the Galloway program bones, and adapt to my own needs. I also mentor new runners to use the Galloway method. His program makes it relatively easy for someone who is new to running to build their endurance for race day.

  3. I have, from time to time, had family run the races the same weekend. Generally as a long weekend. Best advice is to not plan to go theme park commando during a race weekend. Each distance has a minimum age.

Have fun and good running! Please let me know if you have additional questions!


Yes, you can add proof of time later. There is a cutoff, which should be posted on the runner info page of the website for princess - just make sure your time info is input by then.

Thank you so much! I’ve started the “bones” of Galloway training this week. I’m also starting to look for local 10ks to train for and hopefully get an official time for better placement.

What should a newbie like me be aware of (ie what advice/tips do you wish you could tell yourself back when you started)?

TIA!! And I admire you for running the Dopey challenge!! Amazing!

I think the most important things are:

1 - be sure you have good running gear. Most important is your shoes - go to a dedicated running store to have them analyze your gait to find shoes that will be properly supportive. Next most important (for those who wear/require them) is your sports bra - there are good ones out there for all sizes. You should never need to wear 2 to prevent movement, but, you want to be sure that you’re not experiencing pain in that region. Also, watch out for spots that start to chafe after a few miles, and plan either glide or gear to compensate. Personally, I’m a huge fan of SparkleSkirts, both for the undershorts that prevent my biggest chafing problem, and the pockets that can hold EVERYTHING.

2 - Don’t beat yourself up if you miss one training day - just get back on the horse and go out for the next. If you miss a few in a row, it’s ok to repeat a week, especially if you’ve started your training plan early (which I recommend, because, life happens).

3 - It’s OK to occasionally call a run early, if it’s just not happening. Better to run less than injure yourself and thereby run not at all.

4 - Find what works for you to make your runs enjoyable. From podcasts to audio books to music to just taking in the trail, whatever makes you more inclined to go out and run is the best thing to listen to. I ran for too long with nothing in my ears before I realized I didn’t have to be bored the whole time.

5 - HAVE FUN! This applies to attitude, yes, but also to planning. If the area where you usually run is getting to you, take some time to plan to go somewhere new to run. It will amaze you how much more it can invigorate you.



Thank you so much for taking the time to respond! I can see you as an awesome mentor!

Going within the week to Galloway’s store (I’m in Atlanta) to get fitted. Definitely looking into sparkle skirts. Thanks!!

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No new advice but I’m new too and if I can do this so can you!!!
Now I think I need a sparkle skirt too!!



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Because awesomeness.

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I would totally rock the woman of steel! So cute can’t wait to show my daughters who want to run with me!