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London Marathon 2014: Martine’s Race Report Part 1

Friday 11 April 2014

Hubby and I flew to London on Friday 11th April 2014 and then made our way to Charlton, where The Lovely Kate lives, and where we were staying. It wasn’t too complicated, even for an island girl like me (we don’t have trains!) Just a train from Gatwick to London Bridge and then a quick change to head to Charlton. We had a great view of The Shard (I love that building!)

Marathon Phone 01

We made ourselves comfortable in Kate’s lovely new home and then headed off to the Excel Centre for the Marathon Expo. This involved taking a cable car across the river (time for a cable car selfie? Sure!)

Marathon Phone 02

I registered at the Expo and was given my running number and tag. The tag is a little chip you secure to your trainer and it enables you to be tracked and gives you official splits and a finish time. Everything was becoming quite real…! Gulp!Marathon Phone 05

While we were at the Expo, Kate and Simon recorded this fabulous video to support me:

We met the Anthony Nolan volunteer team on their stall and, as I expected, they were really nice and welcoming. They loaded Kate and Simon up with goodies to help them support me and we chatted about the cheer points and what our plan for the day was. I was invited to add my target time for the 26.2 miles to the team’s board. I put 5 hours 30 minutes (knowing full well that this was really ambitious and really, I’d be happy with anything between 6 and 6 hours 30 minutes!)

Marathon Phone 03

At the Expo I picked up a marathon sports top (which I have been wearing for most of my post-marathon recovery) and the 3 of us discovered a really nice craft lager called Frontier. Yes, you read right, we went to a celebration of all things healthy and sporty, and we discovered a new lager…

Marathon Phone 04

We were a few hours behind schedule so unfortunately I was unable to go and meet the lovely folks at Love Knitting as originally planned. This is another example of my over-ambitious planning!

After an exciting, busy day, an early night was called for. So we did just that!

Saturday 12 April 2014

Arrrggg… the day before the ACTUAL DAY. We’d purposely planned to get the Expo done on the Friday so that Saturday could be spent relaxing.

At this point I was starting to feel a little anxious because, since Thursday, my left calf had been hurting a fair bit. So much so that I had not been able to run all week. It was making me nervous. We’d picked up some ice-packs from Boots the night before (a midnight pharmacy hatch – ingenious) so most of the day was spent icing and knitting. I also drank lots of water and ate a scary amount of carbohydrates!

Early evening arrived and we set off for the Pre-Race Pasta Party organised by Anthony Nolan at The Gherkin (another of my favourite buildings in London).

Marathon Phone 06

Marathon Phone 07

It was nice to see the volunteer team again. We enjoyed double helpings of pasta (Kate and Simon included, they were sympathy-carb-loading) and then went home. I needed a good night’s sleep…

Click here for part 2!