Well, I have just completed my second London Marathon. My first one in 2009 was the last Flora sponsored event. I ran 4:27 in 2009 and was really disappointed and it was only a few days later I started to enjoy my achievement. This time in 2011 I was determined to enjoy every step, all 46,000+ of them!
From the Blue start all the way to the Mall the crowds were fantastic, I cannot remember it being so noisy in 2009. There was no need for music, I couldn't have heard it if I had it on! I ran all of the way, an even split, 2:05 for the first 13.1 and 2:09 for the second half and I think this really helped. It was hotter than forecast, but not than I had expected, it's always hot on marathon weekend in London! Running through Canary Wharf it was like an oven, but with water stations every mile, refreshment and smiling faces of the helpers kept you going.
The organisation was first class, the marshals and helpers unbelievable, and as for the crowds, what can I say other than if you could bottle that atmosphere you could make a fortune. I finished in 4:14, slower than I had originally trained for but that did not matter on the day. My aim as I said was to enjoy every step, and that I did. On Saturday I told my wife Jo that this was my last marathon, as I crossed the finish line I was not so sure about my decision!
One last thing to mention, I went on the trip to London with the Action Heart organisation from the West Midlands, and Joy Brown and her team once again did a fantastic job and took all of the stress out of the event (other than the running of course), this included getting spectators including my wife to a great viewing position on the route. Seeing your loved ones en route is a fantastic feeling and gives a real burst of energy.
Thanks to all involved, now where is that online application for next year?