top of page

Hares run TCS London Marathon!

The London Marathon, an event that so many runners have as one of their must do races whether it be for personal reasons or for a charity. This year we had four of our members running and one who decided to run it at midnight in reverse (the course, not literally!). Here are there own accounts of the big day.

Firstly Aden Bell who won the Club ballot:

This year I was lucky enough to represent the Hadleigh Hares at this year’s London Marathon. Winning the ballot place for the club. After months of hard training and shorter distance races, I headed to the London Excel on Saturday to collect my Event Pack from the TCS London Marathon Show and see what new running products were available from the many sponsors.


My accommodation was on the outskirts of London and was only a short train ride, at each stop I was joined by more and more like minded runners all with the same feelings of anticipation and excitement. This was followed by a 10 minute walk where I joined a sea of runners all heading to the Assembly Area, to begin my preparation before the start.


As the race began, the streets came alive with energy, cheers, and the pounding of rubber against pavement. The route lined with spectators from start to finish, taking you through the heart of London and past some of the city's most famous landmarks, from Tower Bridge to Buckingham Palace. For the first 22/23 miles I felt good, I was comfortable everything was going to plan, and I was running at the pace I had in my head until I hit the infamous WALL, running a marathon is as much a mental challenge as it is a physical one. There were moments of doubt when my mind begged me to stop and my legs felt like lead, but with the support of fellow Hares, friends, family, and other runners I was able to dig deep and found the strength to keep going and cross the finish line with a new PB of 2.54.55.


The London Marathon is not just a race, it's an iconic event that brings together runners from all walks of life, each with their own story and motivation.

Next, Kay Oxford who ran for her chosen charity:

Despite some rather soggy, long training runs, my preparation for London Marathon had all been going really well. Unfortunately, 2 weeks before, I succumbed to the lurgy! The lurgy turned into a chest infection which I was prescribed antibiotics for and consequently my two week tapering was virtually non-existent and my hopes for a sub 4:00hr time dashed.

Thankfully on the day I was feeling so much better, but knowing I’d not been well and that I’d promised my husband I wouldn’t “be silly”, my aim was to just complete the marathon, especially as I had a charity place and was raising money for Mind.

Waiting to start at Blackheath was rather cold with the wind whipping across the common and everyone was keen to get going just to get warm. It was definitely a race of two halves. The fist 13.5miles went well and buoyed along by the enthusiastic crowds I was able to maintain a fairly steady 9:00-9:30min/mile but I was already beginning to feel it in my legs. By mile 18 I’d slipped nearer to 10:00min/mile and by mile 21 I was really starting to feel it and literally had to think about just getting through it a mile at a time. The last two miles were probably the toughest. Seeing my family just after Big Ben was a real boost!

I felt like I was crawling along and don’t really remember the cheers from the crowds as I was just concentrating on keeping going and putting one foot in front of the other. I have NEVER wanted to see a finish line so much in my whole running life! Despite it being hard going, under the circumstances, I’m really proud of my finish time of 4:17:31 and even more proud of raising £2,626 for Mind.

Lastly, Kitty Rigby, who ran the course in reverse!

At 00.01 on 21 April, when most people are asleep, I met up with 200+ other crazy runners on The Mall to run the London Marathon route in reverse! Like most of the population I didn't get a place in the London Marathon and this seemed like the next best thing and a really good idea. So with the App started to qualify for my Virtual marathon, my hydration vest full of goodies, I set off.

It was very busy in the start, lots of roads to cross and traffic to avoid. Before I knew it I was past the London Eye, Big Ben, the Shard and heading towards Poplar and the tree of traffic lights. After a mystery tour of Canary Wharf (nearly got lost) it was time to head to Tower Bridge, it was a very welcome sight and after few pictures it was time to complete the second half. The tiredness was beginning to set in and the legs were getting heavy. The next few miles were very tough, I found myself with no running buddy and only a curious fox for company! I kept my head and continued to put one leg in front of another. After a few more miles I had a welcome relief of a new running buddy who was just as happy to see me. Running with someone makes the miles go so much faster and before I knew it, I was running around Cutty Sark, what a sight. Now all I had to do was to keep going to the finish, unfortunately I'd forgotten that the first section if the London Marathon was down hill, so obviously this meant an uphill trudge to the end! With a little bit of walking we finally made it up hill and could see a sunrise over Blackheath, we'd made it.

A quick check of the app confirmed it, I'd completed the Reverse Marathon in just over 5hrs. I'm very pleased I completed it but I'm not sure if I'll be back to do this one, running on no sleep was pretty tough!!!

Also running was David Willier who finished in a time of 3:39:17 and Kevin Carpenter with a time of 3:18:55. A massive congratulations to all our runners.


  • White Facebook Icon
bottom of page