“A person should set his goals as early as he can and devote all his energy and talent to getting there. With enough effort, he may achieve it. Or he may find something that is even more rewarding. But in the end, no matter what the outcome, he will know he has been alive.” - Walt Disney

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What To Do When You're NOT Running a Race That All Your Friends Are?

Many of my friends are running the runDisney Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 Miler (ToT) this weekend.  And I'm not.  Big BOO.  It just didn't fit well into my training schedule for MCM, or fit with this year's travel/budget constraints (too many races and trips, not enough time and money).

In order to cope with the FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) from not running this race, I've come up with a list of coping strategies.  Actually, I've come up with two lists - feel free to choose whichever works best for you - adapting as needed for your own personal circumstances.

OPTION 1: Pretend like there's NOT a race going on this weekend to make yourself feel better about your "normal" plans, indulging in a little jealousy and general snarkiness along the way:

  • Prior to race day:
    • Avoid all mentions of "that race" others are running;
    • Remind yourself you ran ToT three years ago (you're not missing out on anything, been there - done that);
  • On Race Day:
    • Run your last long training run for MCM (twice as long as ToT - and way more hardcore);
    • Recuperate in an ice bath (not needed after ToT);
    • Curl up on the couch and nap (no time for naps at WDW);
    • Avoid ALL forms of social media;
    • Watch the Texas Longhorns play their first conference football game of the season (kickoff just about when the racers should be headed for the runner's village - they'll miss the game); and, finally,
    • Go to bed at a decent hour (after-parties are over-rated).

OPTION 2: Be the best "virtual spectator" you can be:
  • Prior to race day:
    • Listen to your friends bubbling over with excitement about the race, trying not to beat yourself up about not finding SOME way to make the race happen;
    • Offer advice about what the race was like the year you ran it;
    • Torture yourself by reading all the message boards, tweets, blogs, and FB posts about weather forecasts, cute costume ideas, and who's staying at what resorts on WDW property;
    • Make a list of who's racing, with their bib #s,  so you know who to virtually track; and
    • Pour over all the race materials, including the race guide, and the final race instructions.
  • On Race Day:
    • Post a general "Good luck to everyone racing today" as your FB status before heading out the door at o'dark-thirty on previously mentioned training run;
    • Spend the afternoon trolling social media sites for status updates, tweets, photos, etc. from friends spread all over WDW property.
    • Set up "Texas Tracking Central" with smartphone & laptop in front of the big TV downstairs so you can track friends while you finish watching the Texas Longhorns play their first conference football game of the season;
    • Using, FB, Twitter, and runDisney's runner tracking app, track your runners - sending virtual hugs and cheers along the way; also send a funny or motivational text message to anyone who may seem to be struggling;
    • Express congratulations and pride to all your friends who finsh the race and post pics of their awesome new elevator bling;
    • Stay up as late as you possibly can, poring over more social media posts and pics about how much fun everyone is having at the post-race bash.

I'm going with Option 2.  Whichever option you choose, the Post-Race Plan is the same: find some way to make next year's race fit into your schedule and register!  Missing out on all the fun your friends are having running at Disney is no fun at all for you, and causes serious FOMO!

Good luck to everyone running ToT this weekend!  Can't wait to hear about how much fun everyone had. Are you one of them?  If not, do you have any additional FOMO coping strategies to add (to either list)?


  1. Aw, I'm all :cryeyesout: because I don't want you to miss ToT!

    1. It was a decision I made early on, and made myself stick to it. I know it was a good one for me, but that doesn't help with the FOMO. You're going to have a great time, Kimberly! I did the 13K in 2009 and enjoyed it alot!

  2. Um...you forgot email your other friend at work the day before and create evil plots of our animals with cheer signs!! That was the best part.

    1. So true! I need to do a follow-up post with the pics. Mind if I use Flynn's?