Two down, one more nightmare to go
I KNEW I was in trouble early on. The aches and pains which began after six or seven miles don’t usually turn up until at least the half marathon point, so I was fighting harder than usual just to keep my normal pace.
My sat nav watch seemed stuck, and I frequently looked only to find I’d moved about six yards since the last check.
In particular I seemed to freeze in painful limbo with five miles to go. Somehow I seemed to have that distance left for about 40 minutes – although I think I caused that by telling myself “just run to 25 miles and the rest will take care of itself” and therefore set that as my mental target.
Note to future self: The last mile does not take care of itself – it feels like being thrown down the stairs in a sack.
Highlights of the race include the bloke who dropped a banana and nearly caused a pile-up involving myself and about six other runners (almost taken down by an actual banana skin!) and the angry man who stopped about a mile from the end to swear at kids who sprayed us with water pistols (which I thought was quite nice of them really).
I don’t want to be negative, but I would like to say a special thank you to the total w*****s who put themselves down for very fast times then ambled round the course with all the speed and urgency of a koala hugging a tree. Just in case you’re wondering… yes, you’re in my f***ing way and no, I don’t think it should be illegal for me to mow you down.
The organisers of the Brighton Marathon are cruel. With about five miles to go the course takes a lap around Shoreham power station then turns back along the sea front for the “home straight”. The only problem is you can then see the pier (the finish line) as a tiny speck in the distance. I would have wept if I had any fluid in my body.
That said, the crowds by the roadside get busier and more enthusiastic as you head for the finish, and their encouragement helps a lot when your own willpower is failing – I could hardly let myself stop and walk so close to the end.
Anyway, the important thing is that it’s over and I have just one more session of slow torture before a summer of drinking Pimms and eating chip butties.
Massive thanks to Bashers and Aimee for taking me down to Brighton and getting me home in one piece – love you girls!
Watch this space for details of my London Marathon sweepstake, in which you can bet on my time and win a cash prize.
Running total: £1,720