Tuesday, April 27, 2010

London Marathon 'Victory' Report

Wow I'm glad that's over. After a very long and painful 26.2 miles I finished the race in 7hrs 44minutes. I came 36466th, my halfway time was 3hrs 25mins 45secs. 36522 runners finished in the time before the organisers go home, but hundreds of people finished after that.

I started out on Blackheath with a plan to run very slowly and hope my injured groin held out. Unfortunately it started hurting at mile two, and despite regular stretch stops, 8 Nurofen tabs, a surgical glove full of ice down the old pants, and a bucket of freeze cream, the pain got worse, forcing me to walk from Surrey Quays (mile 9). I had a two mile run once I crossed Tower Bridge, but the pain got too much and I was walking again from mile 14. Docklands was a long section of the course, seeming to go on forever, however the last six miles was an absolute killer. I was under a bit of pressure to beat 8 hours as quite unfairly, the medal staff go home at 6pm. I wanted that medal like nothing else (apart from a new groin). I tried to step it out over the last few miles but had a couple of times where my legs felt so weak I was going to collapse. I knew if I went down I'd be staying down and would end up on the 'sweep up' coach - probably the most miserable place in London that day. At one point on the South Bank the sweep up coach loomed behind me like a white shark of doom, ready to eat me up for an early evening dinner. I ignored the demonic beast and concentrated on every step, getting there in time for a medal and a wee up a tree.

I was completely unprepared for the level of public support I encountered. With my name on my vest, and I couldn't count how many times people shouted to spur me on, giving me their heartfelt support. The people of London make this event the best in the world, and because of that I'd never do a Marathon anywhere else. I'm so glad I had dark glasses on, as the crowd couldn't see my tears of emotion in response to them. What a day.

Thankyou everyone so much for donating to this worthy cause. Including offline donations we're well on our way to paying for a child with cancer to get away for a week with their family to have treatment somewhere sunny and warm, and maybe forget for just one moment the reason they're there. That moment is worth 1000 marathons, and so my name will be in the draw for next year and every year from now on. Thankyou all again.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Comeback Victory

In between training for the Marathon and working I thought I'd sample the delights of the Empire Leicester Square on Thursday night. I played in the hairy £20 crapshoot and chopped the £900 prize fund five ways for £180. I made a nice £120 profit, which is better than ingrowing arse hairs.
My tournament came down to three hands -

My QQ against AK - Winner
My AK against QQ - Winner on the river when I hit the Q I needed for broadway. He thought he'd won by making his set, nononono sir!
My 33 against a 22. Winner!

Once my holiday is over and the Marathon is a blister filled memory I'm going to get back into live poker, or indeed any poker. I've missed it.