Race Report by Sonia Karamat
Three years ago I did my first Parkrun never thinking I would run another 127, let alone apply for the London marathon. I didn’t get in but was so lucky to get a club place in the ballot – thank you so much Massey’s🤗
Training started on New Year’ Day but was not consistent. Snow, illness, holidays etc all got in the way but nothing could have prepared any of us for the heat. Anyway, the day finally arrived. Travelling with other Massey family and staying in a hotel overlooking Black Heath and eating dinner together the night before was the perfect start to calm my nerves.
After some solid hours sleep and a light breakfast, I headed to the blue zone with Dave while Angela went off to the green zone. It didn’t take us long to find other Massey vests and have a quick “team” selfie. Then I headed off to pen 6 (should have been 8) so that I could start with my sisters – Anita, Anne-Marie and Lisa whose support and advice was just what a novice needed.
Unlike other runners I don’t retain a lot about race routes but I did look out for key landmarks like the Cutty Sark and Tower Bridge and, amazingly, managed to spot my sister and family (there to support her son-in-law), my sister-in-law (there for a friend), and other wonderful Massey family – you were fantastic! The music playing over tannoys and drumming bands etc at various points were such a boost when the heat was overpowering and I stuck my thumb up to everyone that shouted out my name. The overall atmosphere was brilliant and the support (drinks, jelly babies, biscuits etc) and encouragement from the spectators was absolutely awesome. I don’t think I stopped smiling all the way round.
I took Brenda’s advice – mile 26 isn’t yet another mile but the “victory” mile. If I’d followed her advice and run close to the blue line, instead of seeking shade, I wouldn’t have run an extra mile in total! As it was, my four daughters watching at home, saw me cross the line just before the tv coverage ended – the perfect finish to a brilliant day.
Would I do it again? Absolutely. Will I try a different marathon? I might sign up for one today😊
Also, I’ve raised £785 so far for my chosen charity Coventry & Warwickshire MIND please? so a big “Thank you” to everyone that has donated.