You never know who you might see at a big city marathon!
Just less than a week ago I ran the London Marathon and had an amazing day soaking up the brilliant carnival atmosphere. I hadn’t done any proper marathon training for it (ie no long runs!), but there was enough endurance in my old legs to see me around the 26 and a bit miles without suffering too, too much – the last hour, though, as always, was hard! But I loved every minute of it and was awe-struck by the mind-boggling number of runners taking part. I was even more awe-struck by the mind-boggling number of spectators; crowds and crowds of cheering people lined every inch of those London streets. And the roar of support was never ending. It pushed you on and on.
Yes, the atmosphere was incredible, and my plan was to run/walk, soak it all up and take some photos along the way.
And talking of photos … well, I got one with The Royals! At around the 10 km mark, just before the Cutty Sark, I saw in front of me a crew of people from the Heads Together charity, recognisable by the blue colour of their banners and the blue headbands some were wearing – the same headbands that were given out to all us runners this year in our Expo goody bags.
Heads Together is a mental health charity and was the London marathon’s Charity of the Year for this year. Representing the charity were no other than The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. And guess what! There they were, up ahead of me, William, Kate and Harry, in the middle of the Heads Together crew, cheering and supporting their runners. I just had to go up to them and take a selfie…
… and this shot too …
I fumbled with my iPhone camera buttons for many minutes while taking the shots and one of the bodyguards said to me, “well there goes your three hour marathon”. Ha, ha, funny guy!!
It’s awesome that a mental health charity got centre stage at the London marathon. Not only that but support from Royalty!
About the charity – this is taken from the Heads Together website:
Too often, people feel afraid to admit that they are struggling with their mental health. This fear of prejudice and judgement stops people from getting help and can destroy families and end lives. Heads Together wants to help people feel much more comfortable with their everyday mental wellbeing and have the practical tools to support their friends and family.
Being the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon Charity of the Year was the perfect springboard for the Heads Together campaign. Seeing hundreds of runners hitting the streets of London during the marathon to end the stigma and change the conversation on mental health once and for all was incredible!
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are spearheading the Heads Together campaign to end stigma around mental health. Heads Together aims to change the national conversation on mental health and wellbeing, and is a partnership with inspiring charities with decades of experience in tackling stigma, raising awareness, and providing vital help for people with mental health challenges.
Also, I caught the three Royals for a second time! That’s to say, at the world famous finish line on the Mall where they were giving out medals. Here are William and Harry again …
I was in line to receive my medal from Kate, but she saw me hobbling towards her and did a runner before I got to the front of the queue and my medal. Never mind!
Another great day of running and of memories. Yeah!
Have a great day!