This was my first ever marathon (completed it 4hrs 46 mins) which I had 6 months (nowhere near enough) to train for due to a knee injury I had last year and only received the all clear to train in September.
There are very few words to describe the sheer emotion and sense of achievement as you cross the line and it is certainly one I shall not forget in a hurry. What an amazing and fantastic, yet very very difficult challenging experience. The crowds give you so much strength and the whole event is so well organised from start to finish. I'll definitely run another marathon again as long as I am able and lucky enough to be accepted for my own place.
I had my own place this year and decided to run and raise money for three charities: Debra (research and treatment for Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB)), Cancer Research and Meningitis Research each receiving an equal third which I'm hoping will finally be a approximately £1700.00 / £1800.00, the final figure still unknown as still growing daily.
The support and training back up I received from Debra was second to none especially as they are relatively small charity. They organised a training day, subsidised accommodation the night before with pre pasta meal and post race event consisting of either pasta or pizza and also massages. Cancer Research also had good post race venue complete with showers, support, meal and massages. Which I would like to say a BIG THANK YOU to both them for making the whole day so remarkable.
Raising the money for the charities also gave me drive and determination making my personal suffering from the big day all very worth while, which I also know is nothing in comparison to the suffering that people the above charities are helping endure week in & week out for many years and some of which never recover.
Graham Williams (22308) from Andover Hampshire