My usual practice is not to put it (or them) in until I'm clear of the congestion at the start of a race and things have settled down.
I find it hard to believe (show of hands?) that, after that point, anyone has ever heard a shouted instruction from a marshal during VLM
I mean even without earphones, I, and apparently many other runners, miss entire stands of charity supporters bellowing and waving flags, so the chance of hearing a marshal say something at VLM, with or without earphones, must be zero.
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