Relaxing at the Senses Spa in the Grand Floridian the Day Before the Marathon

In planning this race-cation for my very first full marathon, I knew one thing would be critical to my success at the marathon…how I spent the day before the marathon. When I mentioned the idea of going to Walt Disney World to my wife, she asked if we could go back to the Senses Spa. We went there on our honeymoon and I think it was one of her favorite parts. So, I thought about when we might be able to go. My first plan was to go to the spa after the marathon. However, as I began to put together the logistics, it just didn’t work out. So, the day before the marathon became the day!

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The thing that wasn’t so perfect was the time we could get in for a couples message…9am. With the Walt Disney World Half Marathon running that morning, I knew that getting to the Grand Floridian Resort was not going to be easy. Since Brooke really was looking forward to this part of the trip, she was willing to wake up however early we needed to in order to make it. So, we got up and got ready pretty quickly. We grabbed some chocolate croissants, water, and apple juice at the food court on our way to the busses. I know it’s not the best breakfast to have. However, with our time constraints, it’s what worked out. We took the bus to EPCOT. Although, with the half marathon going on, we were taken to the Ticket and Transit Center (TTC). That worked out great for us because it eliminated one monorail trip for us. Had we been doing this on a normal morning, we would have taken the bus to EPCOT, then taken a monorail to the TTC, then a monorail to the Grand Floridian. The half marathon took away one stop. Although, traffic getting in to the TTC was crazy. Once at the TTC, I got to show Brooke how she was going to get to the finish line of the marathon the next day.

From the TTC, it was on to a monorail that would take us to the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. On the way, we saw the half marathon runners. If you look at the photo above, you might see some of them running. I tried my best to get a picture. We arrived at the Grand Floridian Resort with plenty of time to walk to the Senses Spa.

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It was such a relief to know we were on time for our appointment! The pampering started right at arrival. There were people out front to offer us some beverages and snacks before we even got inside! Everything about the Senses Spa is about relaxing. There was nothing rushed about this time. We checked in with the front desk and they lead Brooke and I to the women’s and men’s lounge and locker rooms.

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The room was pretty dimly lit with relaxing music playing in the background. There was plenty of water and some snacks available.

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The chairs were as comfortable as they looked. As you might be able to see, there are several magazines to read as well.

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From there, I was shown into the locker room. The showers are stocked with everything you could need. As you can tell by the picture above, there were plenty of towels.

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Also, the sink area is very well stocked as well. Need shaving cream? It’s there. Need a comb for your hair? Yep, supplied. This locker room is not only available to those using the Senses Spa, but those using the gym at the Grand Floridian Resort as well. As a matter of fact, by using the Senses Spa, I was eligible to use the gym at the Grand Floridian Resort even though I was staying at a different resort for this day.

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Then, I was shown the locker area and given instructions on how to key in a PIN number for the lock. Once I had my instructions, it was time to get ready for my massage. I’m no regular at getting messages. So, I don’t have a lot to compare the experience at Senses with. However, I was so glad we got these on this day. The the message therapist asked me a few questions before we started that helped her tailor the message to what I would need. Since I was running the marathon the next day, she didn’t give me as deep of a message as I would have otherwise received. Whatever she did, it was AMAZING! We started off with smelling the fragrance that was going to be used. That put me in a great, relaxed place. Brooke was in the table next to mine and she had just as amazing of an experience.

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After the couples message was over, I was lead back to the men’s lounge and Brooke the women’s lounge. She had a facial scheduled. So, I knew I had some time before she would be ready. Time to check out the above. I got the bubbles going and kept the relaxing going. There was no one else in the room with me. So, it was absolutely perfect! From the bubbles to the faux water fall, I was in heaven!

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I’m not sure what the heated chairs were supposed to do. However, I did lay on them for a bit as well. The only thing I did not try out was the steam room.

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Yep. I was feeling really good!

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Since Brooke hadn’t texted me yet to let me know she was ready, I chilled out in the lounge.

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Once Brooke was ready to leave, I went to the front desk area to wait for her and pay for our treatments. It was actually a little cheaper than I was expecting as well! This was an amazing start to an amazing day!

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A little after noon, it was time to leave the Senses Spa and figure out lunch. By the time we left, Brooke and I were craving lunch. The snacks at the spa were good. But, we were ready for a full meal. We decided to head off to the Art of Animation Resort for lunch.

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So, we headed back to the monorail station at the Grand Floridian. Doesn’t Brooke look relaxed?

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The lobby for the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa screams elegance. Doesn’t it?

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On our honeymoon, we had more time to roam around the Grand Floridian than on this trip. If only we could afford to stay there some day.

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Well, it was time to get ready for the monorail.

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Here comes our monorail.

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I thought it would be a fun idea to get pictures of the monorail getting closer and closer.

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Almost ready for us…

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Time to board our monorail.

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The monorail offers some amazing views. Here’s one of the Grand Floridian Resort.

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First stop is the Magic Kingdom.

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I’ll see you tomorrow Magic Kingdom!

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Then, the next stop is the Contemporary Resort.

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I loved all the Mickey ears!

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This is one sign I couldn’t wait to see on marathon day!

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The second monorail we needed to board was from the TTC to EPCOT.

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Outside the entrance to EPCOT

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Inside the entrance to EPCOT

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Once we arrived at the EPCOT monorail stop, we got off the monorail and headed to catch a bus to the Art of Animation Resort. I’ll end this blog post here. Tomorrow, I’ll talk about and show some pictures of the Art of Animation Resort and my pre-marathon dinner at Splitsville in Downtown Disney. The Art of Animation Resort is amazing and deserves its own post. To say that my Saturday, the day before the marathon, was relaxing would be an understatement. By the time we got off the monorail at EPCOT, I was feeling amazing and ready to run that marathon! If you ever have the chance to visit the Senses Spa at the Grand Floridian, you should absolutely do it. I have no way to verify this, but the message might be part of the reason my feet didn’t hurt so bad during or after the marathon.


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