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In 2002 i ruptured my ACL and MCL playing football and was told i would not be having an op on the NHS and could never play again (along with many other things!)... After doing some freeride / downhill MTB'ing for a couple of years, I starting to swim again in August 07 and thought, i cycle, i swim...all i need to do is run a about earning a little money for charity and sign up for the London Oly! I went on to enjoy my first season in tri so much I have done a 2nd, gone sub 2:30 for an Olympic distance got round an ironman and am still going!
When not training I can be seen at the Boleyn Ground being a long suffering season ticket holder at the 1966 World cup winners West Ham Rolling Eyes
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All about hammerer

Joined: 19 Nov 2007
Location: Right Next Door To Hell

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Virgin London Marathon - April 17th 2011
Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:28 pm hammerer
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Another day, another major achievement, and to the so called Doctor that said you’ll never run a marathon.....Up yours. What do you know. Wink

The day started so well. I woke early as I was very excited. I ate a big bowl of porridge and honey, drank a mug of tea and made myself a bottle of Go and walked to Welling station for the short journey to Blackheath. The station was heaving with runners and helpers so got chatting to a couple of older guys, one an ex runner going to cheer and another 70yrs of age running London yet again. The enormity of the event was still yet to hit home, but exiting Blackheath station it dawned on me. I had a moment and started to reflect on the day ahead. How would I cope having never run more than 13.1 miles in my life. Will my calf hold out, will my legs hold out...I had a million and one thoughts going through my head.
I crossed the heath to the blue start and on entering immediately bumped into a club mate and we chatted and mulled over the day, which helped to take some tension away. Eventually we parted company, went to hand in our drop bags and headed to pen 4, and filtered in. The pen started moving forward and eventually the gun went off. I crossed the line after only 2 minutes and was immediately running. The heat was immense due to the number of people around. The crowds were deep and even at this early stage very noisy.
Mile one went very quickly in around 9minutes and I felt good and fluid and hoped my day would feel like this until the end. How wrong would I be Wink
Once we turned off Shooters Hill road down the back streets the race really began with there being more space. I passed Eric Pollard and Nicola at this stage but only noticed when come chavvie shouted “oi its Eric fcuking Pollard” Laughing As I approached the 3mile marker my celeb spotting carried on with a quick Hello to Joe Pasquale who really does squeak in real life too. I can’t for the life of me translate what he said.

As I crossed the 3 mile marker I took on my first lug of gel and also had my first 1minute walk break which was closer to 30seconds as I wanted to keep going Shocked I had planned for a run 3 miles have a gel whilst walking for a minute and get going again. The next few miles went pretty quickly with an unscheduled pee stop around 4miles. As we run down Greenwich High Street the noise and crowds got larger and larger. Passing the 6 mile point I had second glug of gel and another walk but due to the crowd I kept this one short. I shouldn’t have maybe but its far to motivating to keep running when the crowds are cheering you on!
Greenwich was as crazy as I remembered from spectating there in the past. It was quite something and an experience I had never known in my life, although it was soon bettered.

Greenwich came and went and the drag up to Surrey Quays was good. I was still feeling fine and was still holding under 10min miles which was good going. The backstreets around Rotherhithe wasn’t the greatest part of the race, but soon we were onto the Rotherhithe roundabout and about to traipse my usual commute up Jamaica road and Tower Bridge. The closer we got the noisier it became and I crossed the 12mile mark in almost exactly 2hours.I walked, finished my first gel flask and then started running as I then turned on to Tower Bridge to be hit by a wall of sound that was immense. The crowds were, at least, 7 deep and put Greenwich to shame Wink I managed to keep myself in check although I did see more than one runner play to the crowds with an upped pace.

I crossed the halfway point in 2:12 and was starting to slow as I approached the 14mile mark. This stretch of road was great with some good music about halfway along. I moved into the middle of the road to watch the fast guys, and spotted Savaloy so gave him a big “Go Matt”. I tried to spot Fuzzy Dunlop, and club mate MTriton but wasn’t so fortunate.
I passed 15miles and stopped for another wee break, walk and gel but was starting to feel the legs as I got going again. As we entered the graveyard of runners I knew that I was starting to slow and would be in trouble before long so made the decision to alter my run/walk to 1minute every mile, or around a 10/1. At 16miles I kept an eye out for Toughcookie and Backmarker who were duly waiting for a massive cheer and it was like the kiss of death, 5minutes later I was getting worse and at 17 miles I was in pieces. My quads were agony and to put one foot in front of another was just unbearable at times. I took some “nutrition” from a spectator, in the form of jelly babies and a small chocolate crispy cake to try and help and they tasted good. Shame my stomach didn’t agree too much Rolling Eyes . I kept going and mile after mile just got more and more painful. I stopped for another toilet break around 20miles and just couldn’t get going again so I stretched out against a railing and gave myself a couple minutes to compose myself before slowly getting back into it. I felt a bit better and managed to get to the 21mile mark and another gel and walk before carrying on.

Exiting the Docklands was good and it was like a feeling of the worst is now over. With just 5miles left I knew I would be home before long.....Well so I thought, but 5miles is a long way when you feel like I did. It just doesn’t sound far in the grand scheme of things. As we got back onto the highway and I could see runners still coming the other way it helped pick me up, by thinking about those poor souls who still had all that to go. Relishing in others misery isnt usually my style but I needed something.

Around 22miles I heard another shout from a club mate in the crowd and really got a lift and pushed on past Tower bridge and dropped down onto Lower Thames Street. The noise was incredible and this was when I had my first emotional wobble but I thought that this is a route I run every week and not far now...Just a few easy “k” along embankment. Thing is on a lunchtime I haven’t already got 23miles in the legs. This hurt bad but was also great fun as I knew it wasn’t far now. These happy thoughts kept disappearing though as I came across runner after runner in the care of St Johns ambulance and the walls of walkers, which made it even difficult for me. I had a strange focus and rhythm of one foot in front of the other, which kept me going, but a walker or two threw that all out and made me slow down and dodge so then I'd have to get going again. This was difficult.

I entered a tunnel along embankment and under a 2.5miles to go sign and I pushed on, although I had to walk out the other end as I simply couldn’t climb the “hill” which seemed like mount Everest. I took some excellent jelly beans of a girl at the side of the road. I took one and her mother said to her, give him a handful, so she duly obliged and a heartfelt thank you and away I went. AS I turned past Big Ben onto birdcage walk I see 800m to go. How hard could it be, just two laps of the track, to see someone lying on the floor surrounded by S.J.A. again. I had negative thoughts at this point, oh no please dont collapse, I must carry on. I got to the top to see 2 more collapsed at 400m to go but I turned into The Mall and see the finish and the grandstands I knew my race was nearly over. I crossed the line, almost in tears in 4:50:58.

The next half hour was a real struggle and I don’t know how I managed to stay upright but after a while, some food and a drink was starting to feel human again. Please tell me a marathon is easier after 2.4mile swim and 112miles on a bike Wink

Splits 5k times
5K 00:30:04 30:04
10K 01:01:11 31:07
15K 01:33:09 31:58
20K 02:05:08 31:59
HALF 02:12:16 (7:08 ) 1.1km
25K 02:39:01 33:53
30K 03:14:41 35:40
35K 03:54:36 39:55
40K 04:34:10 39:34
FINISH 04:50:58 (16:48 ) 2.2km

~   Last edited by hammerer on Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:21 am; edited 2 times in total
Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:44 pm savaloy
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Great report hammy. Chapeau Cool A great mental test buddy.
Swim smart, Bike strong, Run tough

Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:48 pm sooooooooz
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Very well done indeed Very Happy sounds like an average marathon experience Razz
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2014 Schedule
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13th Apr - VMLM Report

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22nd Jun - Bridge Tri Report

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Championship XC

25th Jan - Southern XC Champs Report
2013 Schedule
24th Feb - Tunbridge Wells Half Marathon Report
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Championship XC

5th Jan - KCAA XC Champs Report
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7th May - Tonbridge sprint
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Kent XC League

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Championship XC

7th Jan KCAA XC Champs - Report

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2011 Schedule
29th Jan - SEAA XC Champs (15km) - Report
20th Feb Kentish Killer sportive 73miles - DNS
27th Feb Tunbridge wells half mara - DNS
10th Apr 7oaks tri - Report
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Kent XC league

8th October Race 1 - New Barn Park -report
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2010 Schedule
21st Mar - Reading 1/2 mara - DNS
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13th Jun - Windsor Oly - Report
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26th Sep - Run to the beat 1/2 mara Report

Kent XC league

9th Oct - Round 1 West Wickham Report

23rd Oct - Round 2 Tonbridge Report
2009 Schedule
19 Apr - 7oaks - Report
17 May - Eton - Report
7 Jun - Blenheim - DNS
14 Jun - Windsor - Report
2 Aug - London - Report
16 Aug - Dextro Energy Tri -Report
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2008 Schedule
18th May - Eton Sprint

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21km run - DNS Mad

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