The Forum at Stratford (click pic to see the original, with names, on RichK's website)
Christopher Day: “Respect to you full marathoners. I found one lap hard enough.”
SSING: “Great race, well organised and the marshals get 10 out of 10. It was a bit hot, but I guess it was better than pouring rain. I managed 2:43, and was surprised to have come second. I’ll be back next year.”
Katie S: “I owe a big thanks to the unknown man who ran the last six miles down the Greenway with me - he kept me going as I began to get tired and might have slowed down. He inspired me to keep going and finish really strong.”
Deadbeat: “A lovely day - I am now done to a turn and my cold bath never felt so good. I thought the marshals were brilliant and the countryside superb (apart from that hill on the second lap!)”
Peaceman: “Just how hot was it? My official time for the half was 1:40:15; I found the last couple of miles very hard. The drinks stations and stewards were fantastic. And the support out in the country was most welcome.
We watched many of the halfers finish, and saw the first three in the marathon. The speed they came in at was awesome! I can't believe that the guy who was second is a forumite! Congratulations.”
Vixx, Running Monkey, Eve-T and Rossi MotoGod
Vixx: “At the five-mile mark I pulled my gluteus medius and had to walk for a few steps. Being my first marathon I desperately wanted to complete it; I managed to get going through the pain although my pace was so much slower, and battled to reach the cut off point.
I was on my own at the 14/15 mile point when I remembered I had my MP3 player with me and managed to shuffle/power-walk the rest of the way. I found that in the last seven miles I was overtaking everyone. I even manage to power-walk past someone who was jogging.”
Running Monkey: “As soon as I saw the weather I knew I wouldn't meet my target time. In the end I just concentrated on making it to the cut off, with the hope the second lap would be cooler and easier.
Unfortunately, stomach cramps set in. The second lap was a case of running from toilet stop to toilet stop. In the end it was so disheartening running/walking round on my own. If I'd had someone to run with I think I might have been a bit more motivated to run more than I did.”
EveT: “I did it in 4:30 in the end. Not bad if I consider it's my first marathon... how do you avoid hitting the wall after 20miles? Those last six miles were absolute hell! I didn't walk though, and kept on running through the pain :)”
Rossi MotoGod: “Fantastic day, fab marshals, loads of water stations, heat and sun - not good! Huge thanks to RichK and gang - I managed to do 3:56 (unofficial time). I’m really chuffed with that.”
Alan Every: “Boy, was that tough. I managed a very painful 3:31-ish. Didn’t walk at any point but felt like giving up from 11 miles onwards. The steep downhill after that long climb killed my knees. Second time round was even worse.”
Matt the Brum: “Sunburnt, blistered and a bit stiff today. If I take my top off it looks like I'm wearing a white vest! Managed 2:48 in the end which gave me third place.
I saw the fourth-position runner blow up and went past him about mile 22. This spurred me on a bit. I started to feel good again and went into third at 24 miles. The last two miles were the best out of the whole race: I felt great and pushed it all the way to the finish.”
Little Miss Happy and Loon
Little Miss Happy: “Well, a strange day. At mile four I just felt awful, no energy, struggling with the pace even though we weren't fast.
I ran and walked as far as the mile seven water station and drank two cups of water, had a gel and suddenly I was off (well, apart from walking up most of the killer hill).
Strangely, I had a great day despite 'failing' so badly. Maybe it was because I really had no choice but to stop - I just had nothing to give, and I was pleased that I was able to keep going.”
LHWMG: “I finished okay, running the second half with an old running pal of mine - Dave Phillips who was running his 300th Marathon - it was great to have a good chat - it was also his 23rd Shakespeare!”
Miss Piggy: “I stormed the first half and then paid for it in the second. I was really worried about the cut off, so went out far too fast. Miles 16 to 19 were possibly the hardest things I've ever done, but once I'd worked out that it was easier to just keep running (shuffling) than to walk and run I was okay.”
Si W: “Like a lot of people I went off too fast and suffered on the second lap. First time round I nearly sprinted up the hill – second it was all I could to shuffle - Oh well, lesson learnt: next time keep to the race plan.”
SamD and MaryC
SamD: “Thanks for the support at the start, it really helped me to calm myself. Officially, I finished 3:58, so now onwards and upwards!”
Rachel O’Neill: “First half was okay, just about on target, but miles 13 onwards were really lonely and difficult to keep motivated. I nearly pulled out at about 19 but picked up and finished anyway thanks to my hubby and some friends I had waiting at 25 miles. I didn’t see anyone else – I think I was too preoccupied with my pain!”
T Rex: “It might be just me, but I don't remember there being any up hills of note, although there was a good downhill about miles eight and 18. I think it's a great course, and the Greenway an excellent section.
It's great to hear that 2:40 runners seem to have the same pain as lesser mortals, and even feel tempted to walk.”
Dragonfly: “What a nightmare! My first half marathon... turned into a 10k due to having to drop out with heat exhaustion at six miles. I am soooooooooo gutted. Congratulations to everyone who finished!”
Abigail Scandlen: “Finished in 4:10, 10 minutes above my goal but an improvement from my last one so very happy.”