London; Day 2 - The Marathon

Day 2 in London was to go and support our friend Martin run the London Marathon. It was his first (and he claims last...) marathon so we thought it would be fun to go and cheer him on. It was our first time spectating at a marathon too so we didn't quite know what to expect but we ended up really enjoying the day, even though not everything went quite to plan.

We had a look at the marathon guide online and picked three places we wanted to go to try and spot Martin that weren't going to be too busy and pre-planned how we were going to get to those spots, he also let us know he would be running on a particular side of the road so we had more chance of spotting him. 

The plan fell apart quite quickly because the tube line we were on terminated early so we couldn't get to the stop we had planned on, so without a map and little experience with the tube we had to try and re-arrange how we were going to get to the first spot. With a bit more walking than was anticipated and being further along the route than planned we managed to get to a suitable place to watch from. We used the marathon app and Martin's average speed to work out when he would be running past us and fortunately we managed to spot each other so we could give him a big cheer. The atmosphere was fantastic but it made it all that more special that we knew somebody running.

I was impressed with the amount of people cheering and supporting, as we moved around London there were people giving encouragement to even those that had dropped behind which I thought was lovely. 

If you are planning on moving around London on Marathon day be prepared to walk and wait a lot! Going to spot 2 we couldn't even get onto the tube platform so walked to the next point (which in itself wasn't easy with the amount of people doing the same thing), due to the timings we had to amend where we were going to support from again otherwise we would have missed him altogether. As it was we ended up in a crowded spot but got to see and cheer him on again. Walking around did give us an opportunity to see more of London than we would have done on the tube, the Cutty Sark for example was pretty impressive.

Marathon supporter tip: We took food with us rather than eating out becuase we thought it would be easier and we were glad that we'd done so because it meant we were able to be more flexible. I'd hoped we would have time to stop for a cheeky pint or two on the way but there was no way in the end with how long it was taking us to get around. It's also worth making sure you have things such as waterproofs or sun lotion depending on the weather because it's not easy to take shelter. 

We got to see Martin again towards the end (we used the tube this time but it was not easy), he was looking very tired understandably at that point and when we saw him after the race he said his mentality was 'get to the end!'. He did amazing well and despite getting in on ballots was raising money for charity anyway, supporting Heart Research UK. It was such an amazing experience, and we are very proud of Martin for completing the marathon. I personally couldn't believe how he looked so fresh afterwards, I was knackered! 

All that is left to say is well done and congratulations to Martin and everybody else that took part in the day.

Dawn x

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