My name is Brian Kent. Like some of you, this was my first marathon. Looking back, the 16-week training programme I set myself certainly kept me focused and re-joining a gym certainly helped. Six one-on-one sessions with a training instructor was one of my best investments - without them, I don't think I would have finished.
The wheels on my bus started falling off around Mile 22. My right toes started hurting and I had to run-walk for the next two miles. I managed to get back in my stride for the last bit - at least there are pictures of me running in The Mall. I finished in a respectable 4:22.48.
I really enjoyed the whole experience. The crowds all the way were brilliant and so supportive - the tip about having your name on your vest is a must. A surreal moment for me was at Tower Bridge: there was a runner who looked a lot older than me - he was obviously well ahead and had stopped to lean against the railings, chat with the crowd and sup a beer. I take my hat off to you sir!
Looking at some of the previous stories, my longest training run was 20 miles. We are all different so you need to just do what suits you best.
I will definitely have another crack at next year's VLM and would love to shave some time off my result this year. Well done to everyone!