London Marathon~What An Amazing Race!!!

MFH (My Favorite Husband) and I just arrived home last night, well, technically this morning (1:00am) from our travels to the United Kingdom. What an incredible trip and I’ve been dying to tell you all about it!

The past few days, I’ve been trying to think about how to go about sharing the past 10 days with you and have decided that this is definitely more than a one blog thing. Today, I decided that we would recap the marathon seeing as that’s the primary purpose of our trip.

So, here we go!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

As with all races, they really begin at the Expo.

MFH and I met a Twitter friend and went through the Expo together. What a fun time!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

One of my favorite things about racing, especially these big, international races, is meeting friends you’ve chatted with forever online and finally get the chance to meet in real life! The opportunity to hear their voice, give them a hug and maybe share a beer…can’t beat it!!! The Expo offers terrific chances to meet up and do exactly that.

I met fellow #AbbottWMM Ambassador friend at the Expo. He set a Guinness World Record at the London Marathon, too! Congratulations, Michael!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Bumping into a #PacingRoyalty Twitter friend was awesome!!! This guy can run!!! Awesome job pacing the 4 hour marathoners, Paul!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

I met and chatted with a long time FB and Twitter friend, Baz and like a dummy didn’t get a pic! *I’m still bummed about that Baz!!!

Of course there are the meet and greets with fellow #AbbottWMM Ambassadors. It was awesome to see my running friends I met in Berlin and to meet other Ambassadors for the first time!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

These two women I’ve been blessed to call really good friends since meeting them in Berlin last September. They’re seriously awesome ladies!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Once you’ve got that bib~it’s Go Time!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Race day was a little chilly~not as chilly as I expected it to be but I was still thankful for the warm jacket my friend had let me borrow! She’s awesome and we’ll talk about her in a separate blog. I had on my Zensah Arm Warmers because I expected to be freezing. I was wrong. I was a sad panda to ditch them before the race even started. *note to self: buy a new pair of arm warmers!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

They had a record number of registered runners at London this year! 40,000 runners!!! That’s awesome!!! This was what my wave looked like at the start:

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Along the way, I bumped into other friends. I’d stop. We’d hug and greet each other and pose for a selfie. What a terrific way to race!!! I’m blessed to know so many truly awesome runners!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Of course, there’s always the new friends you meet along the way as well! I need to master the art of taking pics while racing but alas, I haven’t been able to get that down so I’ll just have to tell you about a few of them.

I met a woman the same age as #1 Daughter who was running her first marathon. Now, I caught up with her around mile 18? She was walking and my left leg had just decided that it really didn’t want to be coordinated enough to be running right about that time. Walking was in my best interest for a few minutes or else I would probably tip over and I really didn’t want to do that!

I dropped into step along side of her and made sure she was okay. She’s been walking since the 10K point. Seeing as this was mile 18, she’d been walking a LONG way! Poor lady. We chatted some when an older gentleman started walking and chatting with us as well. He was 69 years old and was running his 157th marathon! BOOM!!! I’ve got to get my tail in gear if I’m going to be hitting 157 marathons by the time I’m 69! What a cool guy!

Those two decided to walk the remainder of the race so I made my excuses after a little bit and started running again. My left leg was agreeable to running again so I decided to take full advantage of that.

Around mile 21, I noticed a Sikh walking. He was probably in his early 30′s. I slowed down and asked how he was doing. We got to chatting. It was his first marathon, too, and he was toast. Poor guy!!!

He told me that he races 5K’s and does well. Didn’t figure that a marathon would be that much difficult, it’s just a few extra 5K’s on top of each other. I promise I didn’t laugh! Honest!!! Besides, 5K’s are HARD and I have a lot of respect for people who can run them. We did some walk/run intervals to the marker for the final 5K of the race.

I said to him, “Look! Only 5K left!!! Let’s run this thing in!”

He simply replied, “I can’t.”

He really was toast! He told me to go on ahead and so I did. I’m sure he finished well. He was a super nice guy and I wish him the best!

All of a sudden, I saw Big Ben! I mean, there was Big Ben!!! I thought to myself, “How in the world did I not see that until now!?!” I knew I was almost done. YAY!!!

Finally, I saw the Buckingham Palace and the next thing I knew, I was past the Palace! Just a few more steps to go!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

The timing mats beeped.

I was done.

I had just run one of my tippy top #bucketlist races!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

What an incredible day!!! I’ll never be able to articulate this day and just how amazing it was!!!

Thanks for being a part of it! Thank you for following along and tracking my progress on social media and the shout outs as I ran. Y’all are simply the very, very best!!!

HUGE thank you’s go to #Zensah, #ChafeX, #TailwindNutrition and #AltraRunning. These companies and their products support me and encourage me with my running. Good people!!!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Cheers!

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

#IRun4Aiden

London Marathon ~ What An Amazing Race!!! | Melinda Howard | Member Blogs | Linked Fitness Community

Read Part 2: London Through This Mississippi Girl’s Eyes

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Comments

  1. Linked Fitness

    Great blog @melisrunning! Looking forward to the next installment 🙂 @paul_addicott @morten_lidegaard @martin_harris @matt_rees

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