My 2008 London Marathon

How was it for you? - Quotes and pictures from London 2008

Posted: 8 May 2008

Your fame doesn’t end on marathon day - come and tell the world how the FLM 2008 was for you!

Simply drop us a line with your story and we'll add it to our growing gallery of reader reports below.

Here's an idea of the sort of questions you could answer:

  • What was your best moment (apart from the finish)?
  • And your worst moment?
  • The biggest surprise? Or the most memorable moment?
  • What was your goal? And what was your finishing time?
  • What would you do differently? Or what was the key to your success?
  • How will you be celebrating?

Pop your finishing time, forum nickname (if you’re a RW member) and a race-day photo (if you have one) in the email too - we have five prizes of running kit and £50 vouchers on offer for the best submissions, courtesy of the lovely people at Do Running.

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Most recently added...
Kerry Wilson, 2:43, Old Shoes, 2:58

Danny Norman, 2:40, Chris Parker, 2:45, Tmap, 2:58, Morgrunning, 2:44

3:01 TO 4:00
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Deb C, 3:47, Bob and Laura Croker, 3:39 and 3:20, Roy Bloxham, 3:57, Debsleven, 3:57, Nick White, 3:04, Marc Mason, 3:07, Richard Burvill, 3:52, Joanna Watson, 3:54, Husky, 3:12, Lisaj, 4:00, John Reynolds, 3:57, Tara Eastmead, 3:59,

KevR, 3:12, Ex-pat Scot, 3:18, Tino, 3:20, Robert Adnitt, 3:20, Brian Anderson, 3:29, Angela Banks, 3:35, Ryan James, 3:40, Antoinette Meehan, 3:45, Nikki McNelis, 3:48, Nigel Gibbons, 3:55, Edward Gould, 3:55, Sean Conboy, 3:59, James Bainbridge, 4:00, Tony Hunter, 3:08, Trail Fox, 3:15, Daniel Bainbridge, 3:52, Jan Soegaard-Hansen, 3:56, Ginger Monkey, 3:10, Sharmanian, 3:12, Martin Penny, 3:12, Welsh Alex, 3:15, Teddington Wolves, 3:24, Russell Plester, 3:24, Asteroid, 3:25, Sean Stanger, 3:26, Keith Ennis, 3:27, Justin Siderfin, 3:28, Nicola Lawrence, 3:35, Gaynor Hulland, 3:39, Scott Johnston, 3:41, RFJ, 3:43, Helen Goldthorpe, 3:48, Graham Davies, 3:49, DRK, 3:53, Fiona Bledge, 3:54, Kelly Ormesher, 3:55, Lee Pritchard, 3:55, Tim Jury, 3:56, AngelaDC, 3:57, Tutu Much, 3:59, Smokin' Chi Monk, 3:59, Didds, 3:59

4:01 TO 5:00
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Louise Harper, 4:09, Susan Kennedy, 4:10, Nick Dunk, 4:23, Jiff, 4:40, Burkey17, 4:05, George Jellicoe, 4:42, Jeremy Green, 4:29, Splash, 4:29, Peter Westbury, 4:31, Julie Shapland, 4:57, Richard Barber, 4:26, Lorna Lambie, 4:42, Ben Andrews, 4:46, Lesley English, 4:09, Jane Somerville, 4:34, Karen Ayers, 4:16, Julie Stribling, 4:04, Amanda Shaw, 4:08, Corin Superfine, 4:52, Robbo, 4:18, Martin Jones, 4:04, David Clarke, 4:26, Shimmy Shimmy, 4:57, SuperSlow, 4:19, Paul Gardner, 4:27, Rebecca McGuire, 4:16, Mark Brookes, 4:56, Craig Duff, 4:05, No I'm not Welsh, 4:20, Graham Boggia, 4:40, David Tait, 4:37

Betsy Bebbington, 4:04, SonyaB, 4:05, Rob Barber, 4:16, Jackie Phillips, 4:20, Matt Plummer, 4:20, Tim Hallaways, 4:25, Jenni Lock, 3:32, Pink Shoes, 4:35, Seren73, 4:48, Lewis Williams, 4:41, Louise Byrne, 4:43, LorriMxxx, 4:44, Clara Cluck, 4:53, Debbie Morgan, 4:53, Stuart Vallis, 4:56, David Farrier, 4:03, Lois Kerrison, 4:09, Kate Waddicor, 4:16, Claire Blakeway, 4:17, Racy Tracy, 4:17, Shawn Leek, 4:18, Stuart Baldwin, 4:20, Philip Griffiths, 4:20, Steve Kiszow, 4:23, Relaxed!, 4:23, AndyR, 4:24, MissCass, 4:24, Jane Eastham, 4:27, Catherine Rowe, 4:29, Catherine Halford, 4:31, Paulmyfinger, 4:40, Jane-O, 4:42, Mandy Kennett, 4:43, Roy Grew, 4:45, Yellow Ribbon, 4:47, KateV, 4:47, Paul Archibald, 4:51, Sharon Foster, 4:51, Caroline Partner, 4:51, Anthony Blacker, 4:54, Florian, 4:55, Megan Kehoe, 4:58

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Anna Bradley, 5:07, Turnpike Lane Tony, 5:28, Joshna Thrakrar, 6:07, Sonya Morris, 5:04, Naz Pambakian, 5:44, Incurable Mad Hero, 5:49, Ellisrh, 5:40, Peter Iles-Smith, 5:33, Wotsit, 5:08, Mrs. Mac, 5:11, Michelle Beattie, 5:02, MissKizzy, 5:30, Micky-Ives, 5:14, Philippa Perry, 6:10, Giselle Smith, 5:10, Tess Burrows, 5:56, Tony Davies, 5:38, Slowgrey & bandy, 5:24, Alison North, 6:08, Gary Perlmutter, DNF, Evil Pixie, 5:59, Stuart Mann, 5:19, Trudi Yau, 5:42, Barb18, 5:19, Charilaos Minas and Soultana Kirtsi, 6:56

The Ref, 5:11, Nick Pond, 5:14, Tigerfish, 5:25, Claire Mcleary, 5:26, Pete Healy, 5:43, Captain Beany, 5:46, David Perry, 6:34, Lisa Harding, 6:44, Rio, 6:46, Annajo, 5:11, Louise Arnold, 5:12, Jo Watkiss, 5:13, Zobi-Wan, 5:19, Soup Dragon, 5:20, Dan77, 5:22, Shaun Rimmer, 5:27, Redhead, 5:55, Mick'n'Phil

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Jonathan Armistead

Goldbeetle, Victoria Ooh La La

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Discuss this article

Well done to everyone who took part in yesterday's FLM!

Your fame doesn't end on marathon day - we want you to drop us a line ( with your FLM story and we’ll publish a gallery of all the accounts we receive.

Tell us all about your race-day highs and lows, your most unforgettable moments, your goals, your celebrations, any surprises... in short, anything and everything that sums up your 2008 FLM experience.

Get in touch if you were supporting too - we'd love to hear your tales from the sidelines.

Don't forget to pop your finishing time, forum nickname and a race-day photo (if you have one) in the email too - we have five prizes of running kit and £50 vouchers on offer for the best submissions, courtesy of Do Running.

Look forward to hearing from you

Catherine RW

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 11:30

Ahhh...but what about YOUR story Catherine!??!

(well done btw!)

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 12:02


Cath I just sent you some photos from Mudchute's group 3

They're high-resolution so may take a moment to open.

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 12:05

Emailed mine this morning Catherine - afraid it's rather on the long side, I am still all hyped up and buzzing from it all!!! So erm, feel free to edit it!
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 12:24

Thanks Nam, they're great - we'll try and get them uploaded soon.

That sounds like a call-to-action Nick, I will put pen to paper once I get a minute...

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 12:52

What's the best way to get in touch?
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 18:39

Ignore me, post marathon induced blindness!
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 18:46

Well done to all who took part yesterday!! I am dropping a reply as my fingers are the only parts of my body that doesn't hurt.

I knocked 1hr10mins off last years time but am still a bit jarred that I didn't get sub 4:30 that i'd been achieving during training. After 20 my legs went dead and the rain at 23 just about finished me off.

Thanks to my on the day running partner Louise (sorry don't know your surname) who kept me going to the end. Have already applied online for next year and want to knock another hour off my time and finish sub 3:45.

The training will start as soon as I can move!! 

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 21:15

Werp !
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:03

Evening AW GM said she may have seen you flying past us at mudchute yesterday is this true

Here is my FLM in Pictures

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:11

Well done to you all. This was my first marathon and I would do it all again in a heartbeat. The crowd were amazing. I think i had about 4 rhinos overtake me and a camel nearly knock me flying - quite ironic as i started my marathon training in January when i was in Egypt on hol lol. Having problems walking but feel great in myself.

 Anyone got any advice on how to now improve my speed on 10kms and half mara's (after a rest). I've got the great north run in October. I would hate to loose all the fitness i've just gained.

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:16

For me, it's a gruelling tale of endurance in the face of insurmountable odds - 6 hours of pain and torment, having to grit my teeth and just keep on going in the face of a seemingly impossible challenge.

It was just me against the clock and it took all my mental strength and energy to endure it.

I was on a one digestive an hour re-fuelling strategy with frequent pitstops for tea and comfort breaks.

Yes, the BBC coverage was hell, but I made it to the finish.

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:17

The difficult 20 mile marker with the Ben Fogle interview was my low point
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:18

I shall send an account of my marathon when the effects of my pre-race immodium have worn off. I can feel the pressure rising as I type. I will probably wish I didn't have a full english brekkie this morning in the cafe in Trent Park complete with a lot of baked beans.
Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:21

Thanks for sharing, FF!

Well done btw! 

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:32

I got taken out at mile 9 by some stuuupid runner posing for a photo - got grazed and bruised knees to show for it.  Reckon I would have finished well before 5hrs 51min if it weren't for that

I did run around her - but she stuck her foot out at the last minute - doh! 

And if I every drink another orange lucozade again ......

Hope pressure has now subsided FF - nice bed time reading that

Posted: 14/04/2008 at 22:38

My sister brought a nice champagne to the finish with her and we all enjoyed a bit of it. Well, actually all I could taste was orange lucozade and jelly babies, but I didn't want to say anything.

Half a glass went straight to my head, fantastic.

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 07:49

One Very Special day........... High points - hmm all of it

Low Points - wasnt quite as prepared for the crowd congestion as prehaps I could have been.

Wanted a sub 4 but couldnt really get going early enough ended up with a 4:05 happy with that though.

Such an amazing event made me feel all "peculiar" to be part of it. One question ..... does anyone know how to get hold of the photos (the ones we had to queue for) they took at the end and a certificate or such like.

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 09:14

Sounds like we had a similar day Alistair-was hoping for 3hr45 but ended up with 4hr05 due to the crowd!

Was a good day overall but i've stopped recommending flm to people on account of the overcrowding!

 Just about to apply for abingdon (v different to flm in every way) and oh yes flm 09 too!

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 09:43

We must have finished together, I was preety numb from the waist down so wasnt really paying any attention to what was around me sorry about that !!!! I look forward to the next time for the "event experiance" if that makes any sense,  Im from South wales so will be looking at the cardiff half and a 10K or something like that in the meantime, subject to domestic bliss continuing.

Glad everyone seemed to enjoy it.  I await in aticipation the official photos of wibbly wobbly people soaked with rain and glowing a strange lucozade color!!!!!

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 10:17

Great photo's Georgia's Dad, thanks for sharing, anyone else got any photo's?

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 10:22

Congrats to everyone who took part.

We watched in Deptford and trundled down to Greenwich, where we dashed into a pub when it started to rain.


Posted: 15/04/2008 at 10:38

Just mailed my race report. It was a grand day out and no mistake )
Posted: 15/04/2008 at 10:42

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 14:02

Still buzzing, London did its self proud,wanted sub 4 got 4.13 just couldnt get going for first half .This was my first FLM would love to do it again.All of it was a high point even had to laugh when a womble passed me.So congratulations Mr Womble you ran a great race but you did forget your day job as i recall you did not pick one plastic bottle up.
Posted: 15/04/2008 at 15:51

Here are my photo's from Mile 17 supporters...
Posted: 15/04/2008 at 17:04

Brill. Wanted sub 4:15 got 4:36.......however.....

Thought the London crowd were amazing, an absolute credit to themselves.

My dodgy knee gave up at about 21 but no way could that have stopped me, i just had to 're-align my expectations' and take a minute or two of my last 5 or 6 miles.

Organisation was fantastic, weather was both perfect and not so perfect in parts.

PW22, i had two wombles and a pasty take me in the last mile.......but i did beat the hamburger.....that made me smile

Met the marathonlads, overtook the maasai warriors (who were so impressive and dignified)

That's about it, well done everyone who ran and especially well done to everyone who supported us, 

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 19:28

My first FLM (and last as I only ever intended to do one). 

The first 11 miles were particularly hard, not sure why but think my adenalin and excitement was still buzzing then and gave me stomach ache!  Also the enormity of the occasion got to me.  However, strangely enough the easiest part of the race for me was from 20 miles onwards and particularly the last 2 miles.  I kept on thinking to myself only 6 miles to go, only 5 miles to go etc.  I saw my husband, Dave and my friends Gill and Dave along the Embankment at 25 miles and that really spurred me on.  I was grinning from that point to the very end.

I ran all the way (apart from 4 toilet stops) and managed to finish in 4 hours 52 mins - which was great as I was hoping for anything under 5 hours.

The crowd were amazing and I had the pleasure of seeing the Masai warriors which was a real highlight for me.

I was overtaken by one womble but overtook another - however my husband kindly pointed out that Scooby-Doo overtook me and finished before me - bet those scooby snacks helped!

When I finished the race my coach (also Dave) said that I didn't look as though I had run a marathon and I must admit I didn't feel it either.  I didn't hit any wall and I took my time as I wanted to enjoy the experience and not finish in a heap.

Recommend this to anyone - coming down the Mall is the best experience ever and I don't mind admitting that I cried like a baby when I crossed the line - for those who know me I don't cry so that says something about the wonderful occasion that it was.

That's another thing ticked off my list of things to do now that I'm 40 ....


Posted: 15/04/2008 at 21:43

Thanks RT

Great photos Yers and KV

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 22:02

I don't know where I got the idea to run the marathon from. I had never run before and I know very few people that would consider running 5ks let alone a marathon. So when it came to training for a marathon I was pretty clueless. I subscribed to runner's world and skulked around this forum, but not feeling like a 'true' runner I have to admit to being a complete recluse when it came to my training and even the actual running of the marathon on Sunday.

But reading your accounts tonight has almost brought tears to my eyes as it brings back the memories I have of being 'overtaken by a womble', of not being able to get up to pace at all in the first five miles, of twisting my ankle on a water bottle only five miles in and having to give up any hope of a four hour finish. Of the crowd that just wouldn't let you give up even when you just wanted to curl up on the side of the road and pretend that you didn't care whether you finished or not. You just wanted the pain to stop.

For me, the biggest surprise was that even after four months of training, that it was still so physically and mentally demanding. But then I guess that is why finishing a marathon is such an achievement.

I too, cried tears of joy when I crossed the finish line. I was almost a full half hour over my four hour goal, but it was impossible not to feel special when so many people - friends, family and strangers - looked at you with that awe in their eyes. It is hard to describe it to people that haven't done it, but you know what I'm talking about.

For me, the day was even more special... just after the 24th mile - and with the help of an entire girls hockey team , a bobby and horde of anonymous well-wishers - I stopped to propose to my boyfriend 'Top Gun' style. I can now warn fellow runners about the dangers of trying to sing in key after 24 miles, but it was all worth it and my now fiance didn't even try to run away.

So all in all the FLM 2008 really has changed my life in every way possible. And despite some amazingly sore hamstrings, I'm ready and raring to go for FLM 2009 - but this time I'm going to break 4 hours!!

You can catch my exploits below:

It is extremely cheesy and geared more to family and friends, but after such a cheesy weekend I'm quite happy embracing the cheese.

Thanks again guys, for being my virtual running partners.

Posted: 15/04/2008 at 22:44

Well Done Everyone!!

I had a fabulous day. I'm absolutely gutted with my time - but had so much fun nonetheless! First marathon was definately an experience!!

I managed to slip at mile 17 and have since found out i have perforated my iliotibial band?! i have had itbs in the final few months or my traning and this really just capped it off. So i'm awaiting my appointment with the knee specialist whilst i hobble round on crutches.

there was no way i was going to give up though so i ran the final 9 miles in agony - throwing up twice from the sheer pain in my knee. i crossed the line at 4 hours 54 minutes and 59 seconds - its a very strange feeling, i'm more gutted about the injury than the time as i know i probably would have knocked off a good half hour had i not injured my knee.

I have no blisters, nothing rubbed and i only ached on sunday evening - by monday i was fine apart from my knee! So my plan is to get my knee fixed and then see just what i am capable of. i have 6 years until the beginning of my 'marathon peak' years - plenty of time to build up slowly and be kind to my knees!

Also - did many other people not even notice big ben?!

Posted: 16/04/2008 at 13:43

The aching is passing!

I did 4.44, almost the same as last year even though last year I said no more!!!

I was dressed as a Lady Bug, red and black polka dot dress, black wig and antennae. Great fun. Thought the fancy dress runners were few and far between this year. Please did anyone see me cos once again I didnt get on the telly after 4 attempts!

Nerver mind Big Ben, I miss Buck Palace every time. Too busy looking at the Finish line.

Posted: 16/04/2008 at 15:43

Big Ben, where was that then?
Posted: 16/04/2008 at 17:49

Back at work today,still buzzing but a bit pissed off with people singing "REMEMBER YOUR A WOMBLE"anyway just about to enter Brathay marathon online and get that sub 4 .

Posted: 16/04/2008 at 17:58

loved your vid, catherine.

and congrats on both the mara and the betrothal

loved the supporters t shirts - and the fiance one!

Posted: 16/04/2008 at 18:44

I saw you Lorri and thought what a lovely  outfit and if i get in next year I want to be super woman I think lol.

Well this was my first marathon and i enjoyed every single minute and it would have to be one of the best experiences of my life(so far).

I started in pen 9 as I put  5hours on my entrance form never having run that far and not knowing what time I would finish. The first ten miles flew by and I Ioved the fact they had mile markers because thats a great incentive when you see it in the distance.

The crowds took my breath away with their spirit and really they made the day. I struggled to get through  so many runners and this did hold me back a lot, but once I hit mile 20 it opened up and I managed to break through, and I way away the crowds were calling out my name and I felt like I was flying, the next 6 literally flew by, my greatest moment was coming out of the tunnel at canary wharf I think and people above cheering me on,

Even when I saw the finish I thought is this it! I have read so many marathon stories and filled my head with all these terrible things that happen like the wall, passing out , sickness and I was expecting all this but nothing just sheer joy and an amazing high which I am still on now.

I was looking for a sub 4.30 and I did it in 4.16 so I am well pleased with that and because I felt like I had more in me, I think I could try a sub 4 we shall see. 

Posted: 16/04/2008 at 23:52

Well I staggered round in 6:34. pathetic I know but it really hurt my ankles for some reason (I had run 15 miles before but only been running since january really).

When I got to the last 150 yards I burst into a sprint to finish in style and discovered that there was a twit dancing ACROSS the track!  Me and fifteen other racers were going to have to cross this fool - well I wasn't because I was running flat out on very painful and tired legs.  Unfortunately for her she managed to be right in front of me as I got to about five yards to go so I had no choice but to put my right arm out and swipe here away. If you are reading this, and you were the dancing runner, I apologise for swiping you...but get the hell out of the way!!

What a great race though, I am in as an RNLI runner again for next year and this time I shall aime for sub 5:00, which was my training pace anyway.  I need to get the stamina up, the diet right (that carb stacking malarky killed me) and the ankles sorted.

Well done everybod and I hope your race was as fun as mine.

Yes I saw big ben (I assume you mean the real one, not a runner dressed as). have they cleaned it? It looked stunning.

Now, where's the deepheat...

David 39477

Posted: 17/04/2008 at 08:58

Thanks to everyone who's sent in their stories already. We hope to upload the first batch soon but in the meantime, do keep them coming.... (
Posted: 17/04/2008 at 09:12

Lori - I saw you!!! I thought you looked really glamourous, and you can't say that of many marathon runners!!!!

We were spectating just before the 14 mile water station - waiting for my husband to come by... We handed out jelly babies and I shouted myself hoarse - well done all of you!

Posted: 17/04/2008 at 10:14

Catherine Rowe - spectacular video (but don't ditch the day job in favour of the singing) and a huge congratulations to "fiance".

Race report:

Ex-Pat Scot

This one was special, particularly since until the week before, I was planning to defer. A mid-Feb knee injury had kept me off the schedule for the crucial heavy training, and only when I'd done an exploratory 14 miler the Sunday before FLM day did I have any confidence that I could complete.
Previous goals of 3:15 and knocking last year's disappointing 3:31 into the far distance, were long forgotten. Entry this time meant survival and finishing.

But...what a race!
A fast pen 2 start turned into a blistering early pace in the ideal conditions, even though I was keeping the heart rate at a reasonable threshold. The knee started grumbling after a few miles, but didn't worsen at all, to my relief. Despite fading in the last 10k, I still ran out of my skin to pb by 30 secs / mile.

Particular highlights included

# a race speed "Death Star killer shot" - a 6 foot lob of empty gel wrapper straight into the mouth of a jazz band saxophone (sorry! but the look on his face was spectacular);
# meeting a fellow forum training partner as we crossed Tower Bridge together, our common injuries forgotten and way ahead of forecast
# the RW mob and lifesaving double gel shot at mile 17
# the deafening support from the Fetchies at 13 & 22
# the difference this year of having my name on my vest - everyone was cheering me on personally (top tip: run at the side of the road instead of the centre. They see your vest & name easier)

The lows included

# the frustration as the legs seized up from 20 miles, and I saw the magic 3:15 ebb slowly from my reach with every shortened step
# being chased along the Mall by a guy in a hospital gown. I think he was a runner...
# getting stuck in Charing Cross tube station corridors, as all the runners couldn't negotiate the stairs and blocked the entire route
the interminable last 2 miles along Embankment

unforgettable moments

# Being at the RW Expo stand when the news came through about Mick & Phil's official entry. I've never seen such joy on the faces of entire strangers!
# the electric excitement just before we rounded the bend towards Tower Bridge
Posted: 17/04/2008 at 16:33

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