Those are images from last year's London Marathon which I ran in. I hope those taking part in next Sunday's Chennai Marathon will be inspired to put in their best performance. Good luck, people! And
here's something I wrote the day after completing the race.
26.2 miles - Monday, 19th April, 2004
My knee felt excruciatingly painful, my feet were screaming for help, I was drenched in sweat and tears...and I couldn't wipe the smile off my face. I ran in the London Marathon yesterday and I've never felt better than when I completed the 26.2 mile (42 km) course. My finish time was little away from what I'd hoped for but I'm not complaining.
It was heartening to see runners of all shapes, sizes and ages taking part in the challenge. A lady I overtook in mile 15 had had a kidney transplant and a gentleman I ran with for almost 18 miles was running in memory of his child who had passed away from leukaemia. There were plenty of eccentrics as well. There was the ‘toilet bowl’ man, a camel, a centipede, Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker, Batman and Robin and several rhinos that added to what was already a wonderful celebration.
I had my name printed on my t-shirt and the crowds would chant it out screaming ‘Go girl, go!’. It was a fantastic atmosphere to run in with hordes cheering us all through the route. Pubs played music, bands entertained us, kids handed out sweets and everyone had a word of encouragement for the battered 34,000 runners pounding the mean streets of London yesterday.
Almost as if the skies didn't want to be left out of the carnival, they opened up. We were drenched in drizzle through out the course and as I came into the last 200 metres, there were blindingly sharp showers. I sprinted down the finish and as I crossed line, all I could say was 'Thank you, God! Thank you, God! Thank you, God!'