Tuesday, 29 June 2010
Yes I did run and I did finish in a disappointing 4 Hours 32 minutes despite a very good water and lucozade strategy. I was 19632nd the 15039th man and 2043rd 45-49 year old to finish. The total number of finishers was 36549 so I was in the second half.
I was very disappointed with my time as I was hoping to go under 4 hours but I started too fast. I was running next to the 8 minute a mile pace maker for the first 10 miles when I should have been doing more like 9 minutes a mile. I felt strong and comfortable but at 10 miles I "hit a wall" and just got slower and slower. I actually took over 13 minutes to do the last mile.
It is ok when young men overtake you. You can rationalise young women overtaking you but when elderly ladies start overtaking you it is quite disheartening. Then all the fancy dress people overtake you. A soldier carrying a full pack - well he is young fit and has trained to do this kind of thing so I can cope with that. But when a man dressed all in yellow and almost completely round and looking just like a butterball over took me I wanted to lie down and die. It must be something to do with male ego but I was sure I was better than that - delusional thinking of someone who has been around for almost half a century.
I felt a bit like Steve Redgrave at the end "if anyone sees me near a marathon again shoot me!" lol. Guess what I entered tha ballot for next year. There is unfinished business here. I have a sub 4 marathon in me. Thats what my head says but may body may have other ideas.
As I was running independently and not for a recognised charity I had to change in the public change area. Bear in mind I had run almost to a standstill, my knees, thighs, ankles etc ached like hell. We had to climb up a flight of about 60 steps then go down into an underground carpark. Going up was bad enough but going down hill was agony. We were then greeted by the least salubrious changing room ever (and I played rugby at Eton Manor once). Basically a section of car park was tarpaulined off. No seats, hooks or anyting and the floor had not even been swept. London Marathon organisation is phenomenally good apart from the changing area - I wouldn't have minded if only I didn't have to go up and down to get there.
Fortified by my goody bag - drinks, crisps and chocolate I donned my new "Lon done It" T shirt and went to try and arrange a meeting with Louise and Esme who had watched the race. Louise did actually see me run past but I didn't see her as I was trying to pose for a TV camera but I didn't get on TV despite my good looks and athleticism (not). I headed for a tube but he queue of competitors and supporters was so long that it took almost an hour to get to the train and we met up at Liverpool Street. I was so knackered I couldn't even drink my free can of beer (London Prid) after the race.
When I got home I hobbled around but I found stairs almost impossible. The power of the human body though next day I was almost back to normal (Louise would dispute that I was ever normal)