My 2005 London Marathon

How was it for you? - Quotes and pictures from London 05


Posted: 23 April 2005

4:00 TO 5:00 (Page 7) Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
Vikki Ratcliffe, 4:55

I was aiming for 4:30 but really wasn't expecting so many people or such hot weather! It was a really amazing experience and the crowds were something else. Without the support, I wouldn't have made it. I've never experienced anything like how I felt between mile 20 and 25.

It has made me hungry to do another marathon, but probably not in London again. I'll aim to run in a smaller marathon where I can concentrate on my time!

Brendan Mulgrew, 4:20

Before talking about the running - a word about the overall experience. Unbelievable. This was my second marathon and one of the best days of my life. The crowds, the bands, the music, the cheering, the calling out of my name - all of that combined to make for an unforgettable experience.

Best moment was coming up to Tower Bridge - what a sight! My family and friends were on the bridge and I spotted them as I coasted over. I was hoping for a sub-four-hour time and along with my running mate Keith, both of us running for Concern, I got through 20 miles with practically no problem. But at around 21 it started to hurt and by 23 it was agony. I was sick, I walked for a few hundred yards and then thought 'stuff this, I am running the last two miles'.

And I did - albeit very slowly. Even though I had cramp in my thighs, my calves and my groin and every step hurt, I made it all the way home. I was exhausted, dehydrated, sore and delighted. A few minutes later I was in the first aid tent with the wonderful St John's Ambulance.

So even though I missed out on my target by 20 minutes, and I promised myself during the last mile that I would never do another marathon, I can't wait until next year!

What would I do differently? Drink more en route, arrange for a Mars Bar to be available at around mile 18 and try and stick to one pace the whole way through.

M50, 4:30:19

My first marathon and my last (or was it?)

Fantastic day, what a crowd. It went well early on ,though as the heat was building, Scooby Doo running at the side of me started to curse, "Jesus and it's only six miles." Everybody was shouting "ROOBY ROO" constantly and the blokes in speaker outfits were long gone behind us - they looked very heavy.

It was a breeze as halfway came and went in under two hours.

I had a slight tightening of the old legs at 16 miles. By 20 they were solid. I walked a few yards and set off again, and made it to 23 before walking again. As the Cheeky Girls passed thought I better get a shift on. I saw members of my club (Goole Viking Striders) and wife and daughter at 26 miles: thank God they were there. I shuffled to the finish through excruciating pain in 4:30:19.

I stood in the crowd for 15 minutes waiting to get out (what was all that about?) and then walked to Waterloo station.

No complaints, a belting day. Oh by the way, raised £640 for Children With Leukaemia.

Ian Middlemas, 4:08

As this was my first marathon I was just hoping to finish the course. However, my training had gone so well, no injuries or flu, that I'd set my heart on breaking four hours.

I was on course for this when disaster struck at 20 miles. I just passed the marker which was on three hours and I felt as though I was developing a stitch. I struggled on to the 23-mile marker where I pulled up and massaged my stomach. I walked and waddled my way to 24 miles where, due to the crowd and support of fellow runners, I managed to get going again.

My finish time was 4:08 and was so thrilled at finishing I know I'll be back next year to beat four hours. What a magnificent day.

Russ4568, 4:15

What a fantastic feeling to run and finish my first marathon. I'm sure they must have missed a mile marker between 18 and 19 as it seemed to go on forever. I definitely intend to do another one and try to keep my increased fitness levels up.

The crowds were unbelievable and a real help in getting round.

I can see why it is the most popular marathon in the world and my problem will probably be not wanting to wait another year to do one again. Can anybody recommend another good one?

Rich, 4:28:38

I had a great day - what a crowd! It was my second marathon and the first I ran all the way. The only way I got through the last five miles was by randomly picking pacemakers and then pretending I was their butler and had to keep up. It's funny what the wall can do to your senses!

My best moment was realising that the 26-mile mark was actually the finish line and I'd beaten four and half hours; if you could bottle euphoria it would taste of that.

My worst moment was getting boxed in through the first half. I'm 6ft4in and it was claustrophobic out there at times.

I didn't put my name on my running vest because I changed at the last moment but it wasn't a problem. I just found another bloke called Rich and lapped up his adoration for a quick ego fix when I was flagging.

I wouldn't do anything differently. I'd just hope to be closer to the start not behind a trio of Cornish pasties. The improvers programme in Runner's World was excellent - thanks guys.

Angelina, 4:52

Well it really was the race from hell. I passed out at mile 14 (how is it humanly possible to faint while moving?) and - a huge thanks to St John's - got going again only to throw up on 5 different occasions (If I ever see another jelly baby or orange Lucozade again... I won't be responsible for my actions) Then the lovely leg cramps appeared.

Still I managed to shuffle to the end in 4:52.

Best moment: the first mile I really did feel great!! The worst being overtaken by two blokes in a camel suit at mile 25.

Funniest moment: all the police runners being friendly heckled by the crowd and them shaking their truncheons at them; and most humbling running alongside Rosie Swale Pope for a mile - what a fantastic woman.

And best quote from a chap called Roy: "It's no longer about a time; it's about survival!!" Too true, too true.

Oh and to cap it all, the doctor was called out to me on Sunday night as I was very poorly, only for me to be told I was suffering from sun stroke, so in retrospect not too bad at all.

HodProd, 4:08

It was my first FLM since '99, and how I've missed the atmosphere and anticipation of the great event.

Really looked forward to the race and trained well, recovered well, ate and drank well... but how could I have anticipated how much the sun was going to cost me. I completely blew out at 19 miles and bang went my sub-3:45.

Good samaritans come in all shapes and sizes: my family who spurred me on through Canary Wharf, the couple who gave me a chocolate biscuit around the 20-mile mark that stopped me keeling over, and the bloke in the fancy dress who made sure I sprinted to the line so to avoid sharing a finishing photo with a banana.

Andy Gillespie, 4:08

What a great day. The organisation is so good. The volunteers work so hard to give us something we will never forget.

When people say it is the "taking part" that counts, I know a lot of runners who would want to win, or do a PB, but London is so different. This is the first time I have done the London, but my third marathon. It was my worst time, in 4:08, but I do not care. This is not a marathon; it is a lifetime event that will always stay with you. It has all been said and it is all true. From the day I got accepted to the moment I finished it has built into one of the best things I will ever experience.

I have raised £1350 for Naomi House Children's Hospice, which puts the icing on the cake. Thank you to everyone involved.

Mountainnut, 4:30

I learned that the mind wears the trousers over the body. Driving on towards the end I was convinced the mile marker ahead heralded 25 miles. Imagine the crashing disappointment of finding I was only at 24 miles.

I literally stopped in my tracks and walked until the end of Birdcage Walk. Dreams of a sub-4 went out the window and I ended the day dismal and demoralised. Fifty-mile training weeks for the past 7 weeks were no preparation for that kick in the shorts department. The crowds were fantastic. My biggest mistake was not having my name printed on my shirt.

Thanks to Janine for being there.... as ever. To Dave who will finish a marathon with me ... next year. And to the Bruntons for their hospitatilty and humour.

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