Ok, so I could give you a blow by blow account of the day, talk you through my nerves at the start, and how I felt at each and every mile. But, firstly I am sure no one wants to read all of that and secondly I’m not sure I can accurately remember that much of the marathon.
But what I can remember was the support.
From the school dad who sent me a great suggestion for my playlist, to people I haven’t seen in years who sponsored me, phoned or sent messages of support, to sponsorship from people I have never even met.
Seeing my family and friends along the course really made a difference. There clearly was an expectation that my husband would come and cheer me on but he darted around the route to see me at as many possible places as he could with my children, (one benefit of not doing a fast time is that is gives your supporters chance to see in more than one location). Friends made the effort to come and support me and I was surprised by how much of a lift seeing them gave me. It truly made such a difference, and was so touching
My Mum was under the impression that I had smiled the whole way round because each time she saw me I was smiling. I can assure you, and her, that I certainly didn’t smile the full 26.2 miles but I smiled whenever I saw them waiting for me as I was so so pleased to see them.
I couldn’t believe the number of people that lined the streets, some have come out of their house to offer runners jelly beans, haribos and fruit, others have travelled to support their friends or family running the Marathon. The children high fiving people as they ran past.
The complete strangers that shout out your name and words of encouragement and really help to keep you going.
The other runners also inspire you to dig deep. They all have their own personal story about why they are running. Many are running for a charity; many have the names of who they are running for written on their charity running vest. I even saw one lady with “I am a transplant survivor” and a man with “I have cancer” written on the back of their vests. Over £23,000 million will have been raised by Sunday’s runners.
It was humbling and inspiring experience.
I am proud that I managed to complete a marathon and have worn my medal with pride. But I, currently, have no desire to complete another one.