First time run in London for me, and after reading all your thoughts and opinions, feeling grateful that I must have been lucky to not experience bottle carnage along the course. Never had one in front of me on the ground, never had a problem throwing one onto the footpath (I'm worried that one day I will accidentally hit a spectator with my rubbishing throwing skills), and never had trouble picking one up from the volunteers at the aid stations. I was surprised that there wasn't a good bin setup like Paris to hurl your bottles at/in - Buxton should have a chat with Vittel.
I started in the GFA pen 1 (probably about the middle of it?), and was surprised that the nervous tension being given off by the runners didn't translate to a really fast start - I was actually worried I was a bit over-ambitious in starting from that pen; the pack I was in was running about 40 seconds slower than target pace for the first few hundred metres, so I just did a bit of moving up the bunch with another runner, and found ourselves hitting the first mile marker right on target. By about the time we joined up with the main route, the speed and the size of the group meant we weren't messing up each other's pace, so I just settled into a rhythm with some runners in club vests from about mile 3 to 7, then just did my own thing for the rest of the run. The only time it felt a bit bunched was hitting the turns at the Cutty Sark. I may have had one of those moments at about 32k when you get tetchy for about two seconds at a runner directly in front who has slowed, and you're scared your legs will fall off at the hip if you took a sideways step to go past them.
Really enjoyed the crowd support (it was so loud at Tower Bridge!) so that was a pretty amazing thing to see.
I wonder if there wasn't the volume of runners on the course at the end that it would have been possible to keep the pace going - by mile 23 there was a bit of a battle going on with one, and briefly two, other people - which was much easier to focus on than counting down the distance and looking frantically at the clocks to see if you were still on course to meet the target time.
2:48 in the end - 8 minute PB and a good run at the end of the race, so can't ask for more than that.
I love the idea of beer en route - but I'll be very glad of a friendly wave
Do people really run while on their phones? Headphones are distracting enough without trying to have a conversation with an invisible person! If someone had a bluetooth headset, they'd be easily spotted - the wide berth around the person having an animated conversation with themselves would be noticeable.
This is such a brilliant idea, credit to you gals and guys - I think it's too late (?) to say "count me in too!" but I look forward to seeing the banner and smiling happy people over at mile 17.
Slightly off-topic, but I was wondering if anyone with local knowledge would be able to suggest a vantage point for my other half and our 3 year old (and the little 20+ week old bump that mum is carrying) somewhere between miles 13 and 17 along the course? They've got to get from King's Cross station in the morning over to somewhere along the course (to tell me to hurry up!), and back again fairly quickly - but I've not really much of a clue as to how accessible the course is from a lot of the LDR stops along the way, or how crowded each point will be.
Thank you for any and all advice - always appreciated on here!
It'll be a fine run - just take it really easy for the first 10 miles? Cougie's suggestion of a walking break through the drinks station is very sensible - might also be sensible to move away from the station after collecting a drink? 'Spose if you're not really hurting by then, you could try to pick it up a bit at the end. A couple of years ago I ran the Great Scottish Run without having done more than 11k running in the previous couple of months - I recall it being a bit sore after 9 miles (set off too fast as usual), but still made it round and really enjoyed it nonetheless. My running is nothing special, so if you're looking for supporting evidence to run, there's +1