As of yesterday at 13:36 I was an official Flora London Marathon finisher!
It was a day of ups and downs as ever a Marathon could be, but especially so because of the extent of the injury I was carrying. I hadn’t run for about a week when I turned up for the race and the first I knew about how much pain I was going to have to deal with was taking those first few hundred limping steps away from the start line.
I very almost gave up in the first mile. The thought of carrying that amount of pain for the coming four hours or so was frankly daunting and I was so very close to just stepping out and making my way via shuttle bus to the finish line. I had a few words with myself and got my head together and worked out ways of distracting myself from the pain, and by the time I got to mile 2 the kids wanting the high 5’s on the way past and the general high spirits of the crowds kept my mind away from the dark corner of giving up.
This all gave way at about mile 5 when I honestly had a tear in my eye and was limping badly when I saw my buddy Stuart in the distance, being the 7ft behemoth that he is, it wasn’t hard, and that honestly lifted my spirits no end. The next time I remember feeling conscious was around the 10k mark when all the pain and effort was starting to mould into one. I was very surprised with the time on the banners at 43mins which is a respectable 10k time without an injury let alone limping and struggling through!
Then came the sideways hail and rain. There was one thing keeping me going now, knowing that I’d be more cold than I already was if I stopped. It was horrible, this all came to an end as we closed on Canary Wharf though and the shelter of the buildings and the more closely packed crowed was all a welcome sight.
I didn’t find the cramps coming on as bad as ’07 though they were definitely coming and should I have done anything wrong I would have started cramping up for sure.
I was so happy when I reached the 25 mile marker and I was on 3:38:51 which meant I had 22 minutes to finish the last mile and happily wander across the line with injury in under 4 hours.
So 3:51:54 came round and I happily finished in one piece and without the physio which I needed after finishing last year.
I’m paying for the running already though, I’ve an ankle which is badly bruised and swollen, though I’m going to be treating it with all due respect rather than trying to nail 26miles on it again anytime soon.
Thanks everyone for all your support and sponsorship – in case you haven’t and you want to http://www.justgiving.com/paulbeyer