MemberApril 29, 2019 at 7:16 pm
The Good: It’s the London Marathon. Probably the most iconic and much sought Marathon that you could ever do. After applying for 6 years and only getting a place last year (which I ended up deferring) I have to be happy with running this event (which I am)
The Bad: Not a great place to get to (not living in London) or to get anywhere near the start. The event on Sunday was also bitterly cold in the morning…..but it warmed up to almost perfect running conditions. The course was busy and sooooo narrow in some of the little windy street around Greenwich and Docklands in particular, and there were parts of the course that I couldn’t pass a) people chatting b) people holding hands c) people wearing ridiculously large costumes d) large crowds of people swarming around the pacers and I also nearly got taken out once or twice by a) people cutting across to high five somebody in the crowd b) people cutting across for drinks c) people cutting across for jelly babies. Last moan – the meet and greet area at the end was impossible to find. I was hoping to hang around under the letter ‘G’ stretching and refuelling whilst I met people I was with….but ended up getting warm on a bench in Charing Cross Station with a homeless man.
The Ugly: I know it is London, but apart from Tower Bridge, Westminster, The Mall and possibly Docklands, there are some dull looking areas that you run through that could be anywhere other than London.
Anyway I hit my rough target finish time of 4 hours with 4.01.09 so… happy with that. My strategy was to run a 1.52 half distance, then keep a steady pace up until 20 miles and finish on a strong 6. All went well with this until I hit 22 miles and my legs started to turn to concrete. By the last two miles arrived I was on a run/walk tactic just to get me to the finish. Managed a 100m fast shuffle at the end, but was so glad to finish.
Today I am not sure what is worse – going up or coming down stairs 😮
Thanks to Jilly, Sharon McShane and MC for supporting but sorry we did not the chance to Bug Meet.
MemberApril 29, 2019 at 7:29 pm
Considering all you said ( and your not selling it to me ) you did a great job getting the time you did. Imagine what you could knock of that with a non congested no annoying people route.
You did great though and you probably wont forget your 1st Marathon, congrats
AdministratorApril 29, 2019 at 7:45 pm
HAHA – i have a feeling your be bum shuffling tomorrow if your not already😜but Barry, yay well done 🙂 Think the whole thing sounds pretty horrid LOL but as you say it IS London and what better marathon to do as your 1st and in an epic time to, really well done 🙂
AdministratorApril 29, 2019 at 8:27 pm
<p style=”text-align: left;”>Well done Barry – you’ve not taken the most straight forward route to the start line but you’ve overcome some pretty huge challenges to get there so those concrete legs did you proud – cracking time and you should be delighted (though I bet you’re cursing every hand holding silly costume wearing jelly baby/drink dasher for that errant minute or so 😂🤣 …</p>
You shouldn’t it’s a great first marathon and I suspect there will be many faster to come 👏👏- enjoy the reverse stairs and the tired rec shuffles – you’ve earnt them 😊
Though I think those reflections of London as a marathon venue would sum up mine – London may have plenty of iconic places to see – just mebbe not at the same time as 40000 other bods and that course has a lot of dull stuff in between.
MemberApril 29, 2019 at 8:56 pm
Huge congrats Barry and so sorry not to see you altho we did have you on the tracker so I knew you finished. Fantastic result theres much more to come from those legs and that medal is iconic 👍👍
MemberApril 30, 2019 at 5:22 am
That’s a major achievement Barry and a very very interesting write up. Have to confess its not my cup of tea and I can imagine you knocking 10 – 15 mins off that time on a less congested and more interesting course.
But you’ve done the number 1 marathon in a great time and you have the mother of all medals. Huge kudos for that, and for the time which is great for any marathon, but again I think its something special for this one.
MemberApril 30, 2019 at 12:47 pm
First of all congratulations on your 1st mara and such a strong time too, very well done!
Interesting write up and you’ve summed up why I disliked it so much when I did it (though I’m hoping to get in next year and do a “Sharon”, soak it all up!)
There are a few London highlights, but there are lots of lowlights as well, which you don’t get in a race like Snowdon. There are too many people, when my friend did it with me 2 years ago, she was taken out by another runner, and damaged her knee, her race finished at mile 10. And it is a difficult race to get to, and find people. But for some reason, it still is an iconic race and you have now done it!!!
Enjoy the shuffling, i think to come back from crutches in under a year ago to do this is pretty inspiring 🙂
So what’s next for you?!
MemberApril 30, 2019 at 1:10 pm
Huge congratulations Barry! I agree with all that you said, but glad that you got to tick it off the list of events to do. You have obviously worked really hard, first to recover and then to get yourself fit enough to do a good time despite the ‘obstructions’ on the course. Not sure where you live but Brighton might be an option for you in future. Much easier to get to, loads of hotels and a really well organized park & ride scheme, if you choose to drive. The whole event is well organized with well spaced out staggered starts. The volunteers are great, plus with 16.5 thousand runners you get that big marathon feel with great crowds without all the struggle involved with London. Another good coastal marathon is Bournemouth with all the facilities of Brighton, but much smaller.
Hope that you rest up and recover quickly. Well done!
MemberApril 30, 2019 at 10:29 pm
Well done Barry – you conquered the mara including the warts and all not so good bits of such a vast event.
MemberMay 1, 2019 at 2:24 pm
Gosh well done Barry – we were there to watch my daughters friend run it. Wow it was soooo busy I found it quite overwhelming if I’m honest I’d like to think if I got a place I’d manage to get round it in one piece. Hope you’re recovering well what an achievement 🙂
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