… the bloke who said ‘it’s the hottest day of the year so I think I’ll slip into my Thunderbirds suit’ and made me laugh at the start line; the little old man in his front garden shouting ‘oggi, oggi, oggi!’ at around 3 miles; the lunatic running with the fridge on his back; Uncle Bulgaria who was about half a minute in front of me and acted as an early warning for my spectators; the gospel choir singing ‘he’s got the marathon runners in his hands’; the landlord/landlady who turned their pub into a pirate ship and their locals into cutlass-waving pirates; Barnardo’s for treating us so well from the day we applied to the moment we trudged home with our medals; the random runner who said ‘come on, we’re almost there’ and got me running again at 19 miles; Daley Thompson and Snowy; the St John’s volunteer who stuck my blistered toes back together at 22 miles; the band who struck up ‘I Predict A Riot’ just as I was starting to flag; the giraffe runner for initiating a colossal cheer going through Canary Wharf; my Mum, Dad and The Boy for the sheer joy of seeing them as I rounded the corner at the Lord Nelson; all the people at the drinks stations for keeping us going in the heat; the little boy who yelled ‘high five me, Joe!’ on Birdcage Walk; all of my nearest and dearest who stood beside the road and cheered; whoever invented Vaseline; the self-titled ‘guy in the turban’ who was running to be a good role model for his kids; all the #vlm tweeters; Tom the trainer and Jane the physio and Kellie the massage therapist; every single wonderful spectator because, without doubt, you carry each and every one of us along the route. You rock.
So, I did it. I did it in a reasonably respectable 5 hours 23 minutes. I was scuppered by blistered toes at 22 miles and had to walk the rest of it, so I’m mighty pleased with that time. And my dodgy leg? Not a problem in the slightest. Typical 🙂
It was probably the best day of my life. You won’t believe me, but I enjoyed every minute (except the horror of removing my sock at 22 miles, perhaps, but I won’t go into the gory details). And I fully intend to do it again.
One thing that troubles me is that, having seen some photos of the day, I look absolutely HUGE. Partly this is in my mind, partly this is the result of a week of carb loading, and partly this is because I need to take my weight by the reins again. While I recover the use of my legs this week, I’m going to plan how exactly I do that. Watch this space.