Last updated on June 20, 2023
Getting physically ready for Disney World? Did you know that Disney guests walk an average of 10 miles a day while on vacation? This is an often overlooked consideration, and it's not just about what to bring or how you plan your travels.
Of course it has a lot to do with it, but there is a lot to be said for physical preparation. If you're like me and walk a bit and sit/stand most of the day, this can be quite a shock to your system.
There are a number of ways to help you prepare physically for the demands of a Disney World vacation on your vacation.
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1. Physical fitness at Disney World is for all ages
These preparations are not just for the adults in the group. Everyone must build endurance and be able to meet the physical demands of a day/week at Disney.
When you "train" the kids, this will tell you if your youngest really needs a stroller or if they're just a bunch of lazybones (I have one of each). Not only can Disney World burn you out physically, it can also wear you out physically and mentally. For younger children who are not used to the hustle and bustle of theme parks, this can be quite a visual shock. Knowing what your kids can and can't do on a quiet walk to the corner store can help you get them out of bed and off to the park every morning.
Great for anyone with mobility issues. There needs to be a real discussion about how far a person can walk on any given day in the park and how long they can sustain this type of exercise. Arrangements can easily be made in advance for park guests with reduced mobility.
2. Consistent training before Disney
Whatever physical preparation you do for Disney World should involve walking and being still for a few hours.
My pre-Disney training consisted of 4 days of walking a few miles/km with rest on day 5. If you have to start with one day, one day is fine, but you also need to increase the intensity. A four-day trip to Disneyland is four days of walking.
3. Eat a healthy diet
Eat well before you get to Disney because guess what, you'll be spending consecutive cheat days at Disney World. believe!
While I would never advise people to go on a diet, I do recommend getting some nutrition to get ready for WDW's tasty treats. Your pre-Disneyland intake can make or break your efforts to build stamina for the long days at Disney World.
4. Pay attention to your household habits
Whether it's your daily cup of coffee, or the countless smoke breaks, there is a way to satisfy your needs. However, there are other great Disney treats/experiences you might miss when you're looking for your usual coffee. There are some really good coffee options around WDW. If you're like me and suffer from headaches from skipping coffee breaks, I need a three-day detox. This is not the time for Disney to change the schedule so it has to be prepared in advance.
Of course, there are many distractions, but isolating yourself can also be exhausting. After talking with a doctor, we recommend that you adjust these habits to a reasonable level that you are comfortable with.
Go often! Can't quite express. As I mentioned before, the average Disney guest walks over 10 miles a day. For our American friends, that's 10 miles. In other words, you want to be able to walk 15-21,000 steps a day during your entire trip.
The idea is to start slowly and increase the distance. You don't have to run 10 miles in one go. Disney is an on-and-off activity. As long as you can cover that distance during park hours without too many necessary breaks in between, you're on your way to Disney success.
As we walk all these distances for weeks on end, make sure you wearnice shoesYou must wear it to Disney. If you have several pairs of shoes that you want to break in, rotate them during the week and develop a good wear pattern for them before the big day. The last thing you need is to have brand new shoes at Disney and grind out rough blisters on day one.
Now that I've told you to walk more, you'll want to stand more too. seriously! Disney is very "hurry up and wait". You'll be on your feet from morning to night, except for the few minutes when you're riding or enjoying a delicious meal.
As a teacher, I stand pretty much all day. I just need to add more than 45 minutes of gym classes to my training schedule and we're good to go.
While the general consensus is that standing desks aren't quite what they're touted to be, they're a great way to improve your standing time.CNN published this articleFor all the ways you can add more movement and standing to your daily routine; it's worth a quick look.
7. Suitable for all weather conditions
As we strive to improve our endurance, it is important to consider all weather conditions. Specifically, in Canada there are only two months of "Florida heat" out of the year. This means that even though I can walk 10 miles and stand for 8 hours a day with minimal rest, that doesn't mean I can do it half the time when the weather is hovering above 30C (86F).
The gym is a good place to start when the cooler weather comes home, as temperatures can be much warmer there than outside (see mid-December in Canada). You may not be able to test the absorbency of your new clothes, but you will break in your new shoes, which is the most important part.
Even if you can't exactly wear rain boots to the gym, make sure you wear them correctly. If I visit Disney in the summer,the rain doesn't last longBut it can be every day. I usually bring a pair of flip flops when it rains, change out of my shoes and keep them safe and dry until the storm is over. Bring an extra pair of socks because, well, you're good to go.
Have the right shoes! almost every day I see oneDisney Facebook Group,TwitterPost or Forum Post Inquiry"What are the best Disney shoes?"There aren't many wrong answers, but crocs and brand new shoes are high on the list.
Make sure your shoes have adequate arch support, are comfortable, breathable and fit correctly.
9. Embrace bad weather when it's about to rain
Not everyone likes water, and that's okay. There are many ways to stay hydrated, but not everyone is adequately hydrated in the first place. but! Disney is a completely different beast. It is important for guests to stay hydrated, especially on hot Florida days, pretty much every day.
Disney insists that visitors drink enough water, so they installed themed bottled water stations throughout the park, and fast food restaurants are required to provide free ice water upon request. There is never a need to buy bottled water unless you really want to. this is oursfavorite water bottleTo Disney World.
That being said, drink it up and learn to like water. It doesn't even have to be your favorite drink, it just has to make you feel sick at the thought of drinking it more than coffee/wine (on vacation, not in real life. Let's be real).
10. Rest days before public holidays
When it comes to getting your body ready for Disney, it's important to rest a day before heading out. During the 2-day drive to Orlando, you'll still want to get out of the car and stretch your legs, but if you're flying, take a day off before flying over.
It's important to give your body a day off, especially if you're jumping headfirst into Disney World. The visual/emotional/logistical strain on the body is enough to burn out the best athletes. Take a day off, focus and get ready to travel to the happiest place on earth.
Clothing – where fashion meets function
To stay in shape, make sure your clothes are light, loose fitting and breathable. This is easier said than done because functional clothing is rarely stylish. But they exist. Take a moment to research your favorite clothes and try them on as you stroll downtown.
This applies to shoes, bags,camera, or whatever you plan to take with you. Test everything out in as close condition as possible to see if it's really something you want to take on holiday. Of course, it can be replaced in Disney World, but it costs money.
Like everything that can and will go wrong, plan and pack accordingly. While I am traditionally well-offpark bag, some chose not to. I haven't done it yet, but the thought of it already makes me anxious. Be well stocked with items you may need at the park and know of other emergency/baby care locations.
Many Disney fans I've met have wildly argued that if I didn't carry these things with me every day, I wouldn't need them in the parks. While the logic is sound, there is a hiccup; I live 20 minutes from my house and receive universal health care every day. At Disney, I had neither. I want to make sure my kids don't get dehydrated and need medical attention, and I want to make sure no one sprains an ankle or cries before dinner because they're too tired to continue.
Of course I have travel insurance or can buy the necessary things, but I don't want to. I'd rather take precautions and take a strong offensive stance against any potential obstacles than play defense and then see my park plans destroyed. did i mention i havefearSpeaking of travel?
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