Denise I can totally relate to the walking thing. On my 20 mile run in training (my longest run too) when I got to 20 I felt like I simply could carry on, even being only 0.3 miles from home so started to walk.
When I started walking I actually felt more in pain, particularly in my hamstrings, so I tried to run again but it just wasn't happening. That's why during the marathon I had it in my head that there was no way I was going to stop, even though from mile 20 that's all I wanted to do.
With regards to spotting people, I used the power of Endomondo. I was using it to track my run and give me splits, but if others log onto the website you can actually send 'pep talks' to people during exercise. My supporters were sending me messages through that so I knew exactly where they were going to be. Worked a treat!
Glad you guys had good races. This was my first marathon and I've gotta say it was easily one of the best experiences of my life.
It was by no means easy and from 18/19 it was an out and out mental challenge to keep going and get to the end, but I managed to run the whole way, finishing with a time of 4:41.
My target was 4:30 and had I been in a higher pen (I was in 8) I feel I could have got closer to that target. In the tighter sections around Isle of Dogs I had major traffic issues and in places I was near enough ground to a halt, but I don't begrudge anything or anyone, I'm still massively happy I managed to carry on and finish strong.
I was concerned with a hip injury I had pick up a few weeks back that had been present through my last 3 weeks of training, but thankfully it didn't flair up too badly on the day, and after 18 miles it was my muscles that took centre stage in my head.
Only saw two celebrities. Amy Childs was walking at miles 13 and I gave her a "COME ON AMY!" haha. And just before turning right into parliament I got a high five from Colin Jackson! Well chuffed
I said before the day that I'm not sure I would do another purely because of the massive commitment and how much it takes over your life, but already I'm starting to think I might apply for next year.
Today I'm feeling pretty good. I was very conscious of what I ate and drank after the race to recover, and that coupled with a cheeky massage from my masseuse aunt means my muscles are feeling pretty good today.
Gotta say thanks to you guys here, you gave me comfort on the run up to the race and meant I went into it with a cool head.
As said, crowds were amazing. Nothing but amazing, and really helped push you through. Helped having many friendly faces around the course too, they always gave me a massive boost.