The Virtual London Marathon in Glasgow
Report from Russell Whittington
At 9.30 on Sunday 4th October Crispin Walsh, Shona Donnelly and I set off from Clarkston Toll, supported by Gordon Goldie from Bellahouston Roadrunners on his bike, to run the VirtualLondon Marathon around Glasgow. Without the routine of Giffnock North training my fitness levels have dropped off significantly so I was looking for something to focus on to get training back on track (or road or cross country). On top of that I had originally signed up to run the London Marathon in April and raise funds for a Fetal Scanner Appeal that my employers Barclays were promoting. When the London Marathon was cancelled and replaced by the Virtual London Marathon it gave me the opportunity to cover both of these goals.
After a very rainy Saturday the weather was much improved so we were all set for a run in decent weather conditions. The route had been planned in advance by Gordon and he was at each checkpoint to take photos and remind us where we were going next.
The first checkpoint was Migo Sports and from there we headed down to Hampden Stadium. After our photo stop we ran anti clockwise around the outside of the stadium and up our first uphill section. From there we headed back towards the city centre, over the Clyde and into Glasgow Green and then out to the Emirates Arena and Celtic Park.
From there we headed back down London Road into the city centre to my favourite gig venue The Barrowlands. We then worked our way through the Sunday morning shoppers to get to George Square to have a photograph in front of the City Chambers before hitting the West End. At the University Café Crispin and I couldn’t resist taking a seat for a quick rest before heading through the Clyde Tunnel to get us back in the South Side.
The south side section of the run took us through Govan, past Ibrox Stadium, round Bellahouston Park. At the monument in Bellahouston Park we were cheered on by another Giffnock North runner Graeme Patterson with his wife Chi and son Joseph with some colourful signs saying Go Cris and Rocket Russ. I have been assured that the rocket was referring to speed rather than the other Scottish meaning of the word rocket.
Our final section of the run took us back over the Clyde via the Science Centre, the SECC, The Hydro and the Finnieston Crane and then along the river for a finish back at West Brewery in Glasgow Green where we met up with our families and had some lunch and a beer.
I am looking forward to getting back into full training and doing the real London Marathon, but planning and running a Virtual London Marathon in my home city with good friends has been a fun and rewarding experience.
I am also pleased to say that we have raised £1282 towards the Scanner Appeal which will be matched by Barclays. If anyone else would like to add to that the link is attached below:-https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Russell-Whittington
Thanks Russell for this report and well done to all the virtual marathoners and runners on Sunday !