Posted: 29/04/2015 at 22:25
Almost had a fight at about 14.5. Going down Narrow Street. I was running on the blue line following another bloke, when he dropped his bottle of Lucozade exactly where he was running. On the chufin’ blue line. Nice one mate, cos nobody is going to be running there are they? No attempt to throw it even slightly to the side. I was very, very close to going over on it. So I elbowed him in the chops as we went round the 90 degree right before the tunnel at 15. Tosser.
Had another bad spell here actually. Mentally had an argument with the Tunnel DJ for his total lack of imagination in playing ‘Going Underground’ by The Jam as I ran through. Still, it could be worse. I just tried to keep chugging along. Next 5k in 19’26, so still ok. Round that new bit in Canary Wharf, but lost about 25 minutes on that 180 degree turn cos I corner like an Eddie Stobart lorry.
25-30k split was 19’34. My slowest yet, but only 4 seconds. That’ll do. I checked the clock at 20 miles, hoping to see 2’05ish (6’15 pace). I was about 20 seconds in front of schedule (I think), but I was still expecting it to unravel at any time. I didn’t feel great really, but I was actually running very strongly and I seemed to be passing a lot of folk and not many passing me.
Then up ahead I saw my best mate/training partner who had been hoping for sub-2’40. Must admit my heart sank a bit, as I knew he was well outside. That said he was still moving ok as it took me a good mile or so to catch him. As I caught him we had a chat. He’d had stomach issues – had to stop at the toilets at 14ish so jumped over the barriers. All full, big queue. They were the spectator ones! So back over the barrier and on to the runners’ toilets further down the road. Cost him a couple of minutes minimum I think, but he was ok. We ran together for a bit which helped us both – that 5k split was a 19’20, so I just had to hold it together.
I just tried to break the race down into chunks at this point. Get to Tower Bridge. Get to Blackfriars Tunnel. Get to Big Ben etc. I was hurting a fair bit, but I still felt ok. I also seemed to see quite a few people in the crowd down this stretch, which was odd, cos up until here I hadn’t seen anyone! At circa 23.5ish I seemed to push on a bit from my clubmate, so it was just head down. When I turned onto Birdcage Walk I was flagging. So I just counted my steps up to 100, continuously until I reached the 400m to go sign. I really tried to just focus hard on counting, and it kind of helped as it didn’t seem to take that long to reach Buckingham Palace. I remember checking my watch here – can’t remember what it said, but I knew I was going to run 2’43’xx. So I just tried to enjoy the last bit down the Mall as much as I could. Had to restrain from the arm circles sadly, as I still had pretty limited movement in my right arm, but I did manage a few feeble fist pumps.
My rippling torso broke the tape in a time of 2’43’39 – new PB, and I’d finally nailed a Champs start! As I staggered across the line the first person I saw was Charlie – I said my well dones etc to him, to which he replied ‘err, sorry but who are you?’ Haha!! I then very quickly saw my club-mate Rich (who ran 2’44’2x), selbs and Mr. B – it was magic to see those 2, and bizarre that we can’t have ever been more than 100 metres apart for the entire race yet we never saw each other out there. We were quickly joined by njord, Lord Didsbury and a few other people I know, and those few minutes immediately after finishing will be some of my best memories ever of any race I’ve done. The mutual shared happiness we had for each other hitting our targets w