So I made it to the start line. The London Marathon was finally upon me and the thousands of other runners taking part. The last 12 weeks was all about today.
I enjoyed a pretty relaxed day in the hotel the day before. Nick and I had a very efficient production line of water bottles lining the sink in the bathroom. The technical meeting stirred up both feelings of nerves and excitement. I just wanted to get running now. After another carbo loaded meal I was beginning to feel I would be rolling around the course the following day. Surprisingly I fell asleep at 8.30pm only to be woken by my alarm at 4.45am. I am generally morning person but porridge at 5am in the morning was a little difficult to stomach.
At 7am we left the hotel on a red London bus for the start after boarding the bus at 6.30am. By 7.30am we were still crawling along on this bus, I was now holding the elasticated waste on my shorts to alleviate the pain of badly needing a pee. I was first off that bus!
After a nervous wait in the warm up tent it was time to do some jogging, stretching and lubricating. The last few days had been a long wait and it was a relief to finally get going.
As the gun went I was very conscious of focussing on my own pace and not getting sucked in to the leading pace. After 2 weeks of tapering it felt unusually easy. I felt relaxed. The only panic of the whole race came at the first drinks station – my drink bottle was nowhere to be seen – this was my inexperience showing. Luckily I was able to share a drink. We hit 20 miles when I believe we had oly done 19 I like days like this. I was now beginning to grow in confidence. I was feeling good and enjoying the buzz. The last 2k was the fastest of the whole race thanks to the support of the crowds who were fantastic and made this one of my best experiences as an athlete.
On reflection I am very pleased with my debut. As build ups go there were a few hiccups along the way but the race itself went pretty well. Given the fact I have no memories of bad patches throughout the race only makes the prospect of another marathon more appealing. I feel a change of focus and some racing on the track will work well to compliment my next attempt over the marathon. whenever that may be!