London Marathon Day
So after all the months of preparation the day was finally here.
The day started with an early 5am wakeup call followed by my race day porridge and fruit. I was surprised how awake I was feeling at this ridiculously early time of the morning but looking back I think it was a mixture of nerves and adrenaline that was helping me in this department.
By the time I got to the train station and met up with running buddies the excitement was really kicking in, already there were so many people heading into London the atmosphere was staring to build. The connection from London Bridge to Greenwich was where I first realised the amount of people running this was going to exceed my expectations. 40,000 people is obviously a huge amount of runners but it’s not until you see them all in one place, with one goal that it really takes your breath away.
We had timed the morning so that we only really had an hour of hanging around before the 10am start time so this time was spent taking in fluids, stretching and dropping our bags off. What struck me at this point was how well organised everything was, I guess after putting on the same event for over 30 years the organisers have it all running like clockwork.
10am was fast approaching; myself and my two running buddies positioned ourselves in amongst all the other runners, a sea of bodies ahead and behind was an amazing sight. As you would expect the race started at 10am sharp and slowly we began to move, it took around 15 mins before we even got over the start line where we able to just about pick up a gentle jog. For the next 3 miles it was a case of trying to find a position in amongst all the other runners that suited my pace. This was the plan before the race however it soon became apparent once we had joined up with the other mass of runners that finding my position in the field was going to be easier said than done.
After about 6 miles of weaving in and out of people trying to find my position I came to realise that running the greatest marathon in the world in this way was not how I wanted to remember this amazing event so I made the decision to sit in amongst runners I was with at the time and hope that it would thin out as the run went on. The next few miles were great, I may have been going slower than I wanted but I was able to enjoy the sights and atmosphere, also taking in the massive amount of support there was en route. As the race went on and got into the kind of mileage that scares most amateur runners, my legs were starting to feel it but the support from the crowd pushes you on. On mile 24 after deciding I could no longer ignore my bladder I decided to take a comfort break, probably not the best idea but it had to be done. With my bladder empty and feeling much more comfortable I was looking at picking up my running again which was easier said than done. I found the final two miles really difficult but again with the support of fellow runners and the crowd I just about managed to get myself over that finish line.
I crossed the line in at a time of 4 hours and 2mins, just outside the sub 4 I wanted but I wasn’t too disappointed, I think I was more content than anything. It was a great day and a great experience, it was finished off in style, meeting up with family and friends and enjoying some good food and strong drinks 🙂
The reason behind doing this year’s London Marathon was to raise awareness of our registered charity the Friends of Broome Park but also to raise funds that go towards enriching the lives of the residents of Broome Park. To date we have raised around £3000 which is a massive amount and exceeds anything we could have thought possible so thank you very much to all who have supported and donated to the cause. It really is appreciated.