Brighton Marathon 2016 / Time: 3:35:03 / Raised: £1,372.98 for Epilepsy Research UK (so far…)
My day on Sunday 17th April began like this:
After a breakfast of porridge, banana, toast, and trepidation, we headed to the start-line in Preston Park. Now I’m sure it’s usually lovely, but after heavy rain and heavier footfall on this particular weekend, the starting area of the park was essentially a quagmire. After trying and failing to do a few dynamic stretches in the mud, and steadfastly ignoring the MC who tried to rouse us in a karaoke session, we were off.
The sun was shining, the weather was sweet. Having nervously strapped up my achilles tendon and popped a few more ibuprofen than I’d care to admit before starting, the first few miles were spent testing the water. I hadn’t been able to do much running for a couple of weeks beforehand, and to take my mind off this I chatted to a fellow green-vested Epilepsy Research runner I met on the way. We were both running for the first time and chuckled apprehensively at what we’d got ourselves into…
As we left the crowds and headed East towards the Marina, I found both a rhythm and a fellow member of Tower Hamlets GoodGym running club. Chatting was still possible at this stage, but soon I was on my own again as we turned to run back towards town.
Having scoffed an energy gel and seen my cheering squad again, I was feeling pretty good at the halfway point. Brighton looks amazing in the sunshine, and I was catching up with a viking I’d set my sights on earlier in the day.
Without a doubt the hardest miles were 19 to 23. Running away from the crowds, uphill into an industrial estate made the cheering of the seafront seem a long time ago. Even the people handing out jelly babies, oranges and vaseline were (ironically) drying up. The lowest point was overtaking Spiderman who was on his knees, unable to continue.
I counted down the final few miles, spurred by the multitude of people out in support. Dizziness and slight delirium are all I really remember from the finish line.
Having had no expectations, I was really happy to make it round in three hours and 35 minutes. I’d also edged past my fundraising target the day beforehand, which has since continued to rise.
Super special thanks to:
- Epilepsy Research UK, who were there on the day to cheer us on. Twice.
- Nick Davis, for these fantastic photos.
- Daniella Davis and roommates, for letting us take over your student house for the weekend. As well as your bed.
- The rest of my cheering squad: could NOT have done it without you.
Most importantly, an enormous thank you goes out to everyone who has donated to my sponsorship page. The experience of researching and writing this blog has proven to me just how important the work of Epilepsy Research UK is, and I am both humbled by and immensely proud of the incredible support you have all provided. And of course, there is still time to contribute to my fundraising page if you haven’t already.
I’m yet to decide what I’ll do with the blog from here. I’ll aim to keep running, and may book into a shorter race or two later in this year to hold myself to account.
And who knows? I popped down to watch the London Marathon runners go through my area earlier this morning.
I must admit, it looks quite tempting…