Are you a runner? Do you sign up for every runDisney event just to get the shiny medal (even if you can’t run)? Perhaps you have children. If not today, then maybe one day soon. At some point the subject will inevitably come up about whether or not you should bring junior along with you to one of the runDisney Kids races. Yes. Yes, you absolutely should.
5 Tips for Training a Young runDisney Padawan
I love runDisney events for so many reasons: the courses through the parks, the character stops (even though I’m too slow to stop for them) and the awesome shirts. But since becoming a mother, it opened up a whole new love: Kids Races! Starting at a Diaper Dash for crawlers, the Kids Races go all the way up to a 400m dash for 7-8 year olds (some races have a one mile race for older kids). My little guy (Oliver) is 3 and this was his last year in the 100m dash group. I think by next year, he will be ready for the 200m dash! Thinking of signing up your child for a runDisney Kids Race? Here are my 5 tips for training a young runDisney Padawan.
1. Teach them to be ACTIVE!
runDisney Kids Races are the perfect introduction to running as they are a non competitive race. This is a great opportunity for your child to have fun in an active environment. Oliver ran with a friend on Saturday, January 14th at the Star Wars Half Marathon – The Light Side weekend and they both had a BLAST! They were squealing with excitement as it got closer to race time and were so excited once they finished.
2. Dress the Part for runDisney Kids Races
There’s nothing cuter than a baby Darth Vader, well maybe a baby Chewbacca, but you get the point. Every runDisney participant knows to dress up for the races. Prepare yourself for something much more adorable: children in the same costumes. We had plans for Oliver to go as BB8 this year, but as any parent of a toddler knows, things don’t always go as planned. We saw some pretty adorable outfits while waiting for the races to start.
3. Register Early
The runDisney Kids Races are almost as popular as the adult races. I recommend registering for the Kids races at the same time as you are registering for the half marathon or any other races you are planning on doing. Treat this like you would any other runDisney event.
4. Be Prepared
I recommend arriving to the corrals about 25-30 minutes before the races will start. This will give you enough time to get in the corral but not so much time that your child is done before it even starts. I know Oliver has a hard time standing still (as all 3 year olds do) and this timing works pretty well. It also helped that a representative from GoGoSqueez (the sponsor of the Kids races) was passing out free applesauce. Oliver LOVES GoGoSqueez applesauce! Their products are nut free and safe for my little nut allergy guy.
5. Most Importantly – HAVE FUN!
This is the most important tip of all. Make sure your child is enjoying themselves before, during and after the race. Oliver kept telling me after: “I’m so proud of myself” That made my mama heart so happy. I love hearing how he was proud of his accomplishment.
There are so many benefits to sign your child up for the runDisney Kids races. Let me know in the comments if your kids have done any runDisney Kids races!