I’ve wanted to run a marathon for longer than I can remember. I have memories of watching the London Marathon on the television as a kid and be awestruck with the dedication that the thousands of runners have put in to be there on that one day to complete that one race. I think it’s that emotion that has made me want to run the London Marathon as my first ever marathon and well since I was 18 I have entered myself religiously into the ballot for a place. I’ve applied six times now, and six times I’ve been rejected; I’m not lucky apparently. Around 40,000 people run the London Marathon each year, but half of those places are reserved for guaranteed entrance based on previous performance, professional places and charity entrants, so that leaves 20,000 places for the general public ballot; yet 120,000 people apply each year so that’s about a one in six chance of getting a place.
So after many failed attempts I started looking elsewhere for a marathon to run as my first marathon. I didn’t want to just run a small local marathon, I just think that maybe it wouldn’t be the same. The achievement would definitely be equal, but not the atmosphere. So I made myself a deal. I’d allow myself to enter ballots for big city marathons like London, New York and Paris. I applied for the New York City Marathon last year, come early 2012 I discovered that I was unfortunate once again; or maybe not considering Hurricane Sandy caused the NYC Marathon to be cancelled this year. Then I was looking on the internet and saw that guaranteed entrance for the Parisian Marathon was still available. I got the time off work signed off and registered at once; not the easiest thing in the world on a half english half french application – but I succeeded. So that’s it on Sunday April 7th 2013 I shall be running 26.2 miles or 42km through the sites and wonderful city that is Paris.
The reason that I have never registered for a place through a charity is that there is always such a large financial commitment that comes along side a charity place of around £1000 of fundraising. So I have always told myself when I do eventually get into a marathon I’ll run for charity, but on my own terms with no goal or commitment of the value to which I need to fund raise. So for that reason I am to be running in aid of Merlin’s Magic Wand, a children’s charity which aims to give children who are seriously ill, disabled or disadvantaged the opportunity to enjoy attractions that they may otherwise not have been able to. And I’m just aiming to raise as much as possible, so please visit my JustGiving page at www.justgiving.com/sburns.
The whole point of this blog was meant to be fitness vs. baking and how they offset one another. So with this marathon I’ll be breathing life into this concept and posting more about how I’m getting on. So going into the New Year I hope it’s inspirational and you enjoy seeing my progress. Oh and don’t worry they’ll still be many more treats for you to try at home!