What a fun day!
Well, I did it! I still can't believe what an amazing day it was. I think I was smiling the whole time, even when I felt quite sick between miles 13-20. Not sure what happened, maybe too much Lucozade? The crowd support was fabulous and it made a real difference to me when people shouted out my name, but best of all, I had family and friends at various points during those more difficult miles and my brother kept popping up all along the course!
Having been ill and then injured in those last few weeks I wasn't sure how long I could run for before the pain set in and on the day decided to revise my time down to 10min miles to stand a better chance of making it. I think I hadn't quite realised how hard it would be to run at a pace that's right for me and after spending the first 2 or 3 miles weaving in and out of people, trying to speed up I decided to stop stressing and just went with the flow. What a great decision that was! It meant I could relax, really enjoy the atmosphere, high five loads of kids, wave at everyone and just have fun. Turning the corner and seeing Tower Bridge in front of me was my absolute highlight of the race. What a fantastic sight! I got slightly worried when I started to feel weak shortly afterwards and was very glad I had gone out slowly as everyone had told me how hard the last 6 miles are. Maybe my body functions differently to everyone elses, but by the time I got to 21 miles I was starting to feel much better again and once I reached Tower Hill it felt like I was flying! Needless to say I wasn't at all, but my pace remained consistent throughout the whole race. 4hours 33 mins, not what I had planned but I had the time of my life! This marathon was for my dad and I'm sure he looked down on me that day.
I resisted the temptation to enter the 2013 ballot but if any of you can recommend another marathon, I'd love to hear from you. After all, my time needs to be improved!
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