Disney World is huge and requires a lot of walking even with a carefully laid out touring plan. Physically training for Disney World can be a fun way to build excitement for your Disney vacation. Training for your vacation can include a new or improved walking regimen, increasing hydration, rest, and learning how to properly recover each day from so much walking.
Training for Your Disney World Vacation
A Disney World involves so much walking. Walking from your resort room to Disney transportation can be quite the hike. If you are driving, plan on getting parked the furthest away from the trams. Then the walk into the park. Already you have walked probably a half mile and the days has not even begun.
Then there is the standing. You stand a lot at Disney, even in the Fastpass lines. You also stand for the street performers, shows, parades, and fireworks.
Getting your body ready for all this physical activity is just as important as snagging that coveted dining reservation or Fastpass. Here are are some things I recommend to start doing once you start planning your Disney World vacation.
Increase Your Walking Distance and Endurance. Start walking more. Start small and then build up both distance and length of time.
Increase Leg Strength. While walking does increase your leg strength doing some stretches and leg stretching exercises can be helpful as well. Yoga is a good way to do this.
Get Enough Sleep. When you are training and increasing your activity, your muscles need rest. Get enough sleep each night.
Eat More Foods that Naturally Have Potassium & Calcium. Potassium supports blood pressure, cardiovascular health, bone strength, and muscle strength. Some good sources of potassium are fresh leafy greens, avocados, tomatoes, potatoes, and beans. Calcium aids in maintaining bone health. Foods high in calcium include seeds, dairy (cheese, yogurt), almonds, beans, and salmon. Adding these foods to your diet will help.
Drink Enough Water. Hydration is so important while training. Get into the habit of drinking more water so that at Disney World, where it is hot 9 months out of the year, the heat won’t slow you down.
Ways to Increase Your Steps
Start Tracking Your Steps. Most smartphones have a step tracker. If you are looking to buy a fitness tracker there are several out there. I personally love FitBit, they also have a cheap price point.
Set Goals. Wear your Fitness Tracker for a week or so without making an effort to walk more. After that week take your average steps per day and make your daily goal 500-1000 more steps for the next week. Whatever you are comfortable with. Building up too fast can actually hurt your muscles. Every couple of weeks increase your daily step goal. I would try to hit 20,000 daily steps by the time your vacation comes. I usually walk 15,000 to 30,000+ on a full Disney day.
Make Small Changes. Adding more steps doesn’t necessarily mean a rigid walking routine, especially at the beginning. Make small changes like parking further out when shopping, take the dog for quick walks, put the remote by the TV, use the restroom furthest away from you, etc. Those small changes add up.
Add Ramps & Inclines. One of my worst mistakes during my runDisney 10k training was I didn’t train with ramps and inclines. While you might not be doing a 10k, Disney has ramps and inclines throughout the park. If you want to to use the monorail you will be using a ramp.
Ways to Make Physically Training for Disney World Fun
Wear Fun Disney Themed Workout/Walking Outfits. Dressing cute motivates me a lot. Even if you are plus-sized like myself there are cute Disney themed workout clothes to choose from especially at Torrid and Hot Topic. I am also quite fond of the fitness brand Livi Active from Lane Bryant.
Have a Disney Walking Playlist. Below you will find a few songs that get me going but choose music that gets you going. Looking for more ideas? Check out this list from Simplifyingfamily.com
- Try – Zootopia Soundtrack
- Immortals – Big Hero 6 Soundtrack
- Shut Up & Drive – Wreck-it Ralph Soundtrack
- How Far I’ll Go – Moana Soundtrack
- Anything on the Princess & The Frog Soundtrack
- Let it Go – Frozen Soundtrack
Have a Visual Disney Themed Walking/ Step Goal Printable. Visually seeing that you are making strides helps a lot. I have created a 6 Month Training for Disney Walking Printable Walking plan. This 6-month walking plan adds 650 steps per day each week with the final week adding 700 steps.
Click here to get your free Disney World Training Walking Plan Printable. Not only will you get access to this Disney printable, but my whole Disney Planning Printable Library!
Ask a friend to walk with you. Having someone to walk with can help make the minutes fly by. You may also find that a friend can help motivate you to get up and get walking on the days you may feel like going on a walk.
Join an Accountability Group. I just started a Walking for Disney Accountability Group on Facebook. It is a weight-neutral safe place that will have walking and step challenges. I am am excited to start walking more with you!