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London Marathon – What to Expect

London Marathon - What to Expect

Fancy dress, heat rub and chafing issues. London is set to get interesting again. The 2018 London marathon is here again. Charity runners, fit for age athletes or lucky ballot entrants the streets of London are set to be full of 35,000 runners. If this is your first time running a marathon or running the London marathon here’s what to expect.

London Marathon – What to Expect

We have put together a short list of potentially some of the things you wouldn’t have considered when running the London Marathon for the first time.

Getting to The Start Line

One of the great things about London is its network of underground tube stations. The even better news is that as a London marathon runner you can use the tubes for free! Just show them your race number or your finishers medal. Remember though it’s also free for the other runners, so make sure that you’re giving yourself plenty of time to get to the start line as it will be busy.

Don’t Rush to Start

So you’ve entered the starting area. You’ve had a look round seen other runners prepping with last-minute energy drinks, applying tape and vaseline to avoid chafing. Keeping an eye on the clock you can see it’s getting close to the starting gun. Don’t panic though, there is no need to rush into the starting queue. As we said earlier it’s 35,000 runners (split across two starting zones). Use the additional time to make another couple of trips to the portable toilets.

Toilets En Route

Right so you’ve navigated the start line and you’re underway, remembering to pace yourself, and when you’re planning to use your energy gels and hydration. A couple of miles in you’re seeing people on the side of the route using bushes to relieve themselves already!?! That’s correct, all that waiting around at the beginning has seen runners (potentially yourself) take on additional water. So, your choice? Use the bushes or wait till you see portable loo’s which may require some queueing.

Enjoy the Crowds and the Atmosphere

Yes, there are other marathons that you can run, they’re all the same distance and you’ll likely get medals and t-shirts for completing them as well. However, the London Marathon is one of the 6 marathon majors. There is a reason why it’s difficult to gain entry to run this race over 300,000 people applied through the ballot entry system this year alone! Simply put this is one of the most popular venues and races to run. Crowds and bands will line the street to cheer on everyone. We recommend that you have your name on the front of your vest so they can shout out your name and give you a little boost when and if it’s needed.

The Finish

You can see Big Ben, keep going you’re nearly there. The crowds along the street leading to Big Ben have been pushing you along, you’re almost there. Through Westminster, a quick lap of St James Park, more crowds cheering you, keep going! Then you see Buckingham Palace (give the Queen a wave she’ll be cheering you on) finally down the mall to the finish line. This likely feels like the longest mile you’ve ever run. Surprisingly though you’ve found some speed. You cross the finish line and you’ve done it! 26.2 miles done! Congratulations!

Same again next year?

P.S. you’re going to hurt, so remember to stretch before and after.

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