Seriously, there are more toilets available at the Bournemouth Bay half marathon than the Paris Marathon. One per 30min pace pen for those interested – so 6 then.
I wasn’t going to but three days since the event and I’ve decided to write a little about it. Only a couple photos I’m afraid as the first half I was running too fast and the second half I felt f****[tired] and couldn’t be bothered.
Still, some good comedy and experiences came out if it:
– being smacked by 30 jumpers that people throw to the side (so don’t stand by the fences)
– I really enjoyed the route, which included a massive adrenalin rush for the first mile as the whole experience floods you – a feeling you can only get from the sound of 50,000 people shouting, it’s amazing. If you’ve ever wanted to know how fast it must feel to run like Robbie Britton, the first mile feels like its over in no time. Then you notice that you’re not actually in a running race, more like a human dodgems ride without the bumpers and the electric sparks at the top, mile three you remember that you’ve not been paying any attention to running form or breathing which is when the race really starts. So that’s good, 3 miles down already.
– It’s fantastically supported as you would expect until about mile 5 you enter the first park. Mile11/ 12 you leave the park and some point later there is a brilliant 1/4 mile section through an underpass all dark except for lazer lights and disco disco music – I actually recommend paying Paris’s exorbitant coffee and tea prices just to fly over and see that. Then you run a bit more, then finish.
– Do invest in gels / salt though as there was only one small power aid drink station and no salty snacks, a sad sight considering it can be warm and many many people drop due to cramps. Water, raisins, bananas and oranges just won’t help runners when that kicks in.
– Like a lot of city maras, the crowds go crazy in the final miles and Paris was no different, having spectated in London for a few years now it is a great atmosphere on both sides and it remains the best thing about big races, I just love the atmosphere. It is epic.
– Ultimately you finish, find your family (who have been very kindly holding your stupid coat for (two) (three) four hours – ahem) and start the ultra marathon stage that is getting out of the 1 mile finish paddocks and home.
Ooo, look at my medal…