I’ll be honest, I had no idea that it was London Marathon ‘Ballot Week’ until I saw it trending on Twitter yesterday.
All of sudden, my timeline was filled with rejection and acceptance announcements. I hadn’t received emails from any charities or seen any hype on social media in the lead-up, so for the first time, it came as a bit of a surprise.
I went home from work last night hoping and praying that I would finally have some happy post from the London Marathon. I’ve entered the ballot seven times now, and have been rejected all seven times.
Entrants usually receive a magazine through the post stating ‘Congratulations’ or ‘Commiserations’ (or similar) on the front cover; and those who had chosen to bequeath their registration fee upon being successful would also receive a branded running jacket.
On this occasion, I saw the branded jacket as soon as I walked through the door, so there was no need to even look at the magazine. The disappointment was sharp, and then it turned into frustration when I saw a few people online posting things such as: “I only entered for a laugh, and I got a place!” etc.
Running for charity isn’t an option; London Marathon fundraising targets are in the thousands and I’ve found that people aren’t overly generous any more (it’s always been a struggle begging for sponsorship), and I can’t justify picking up any outstanding amount that I’m not able to fundraise.
I turned 30 in April and was – thankfully – still able to complete a marathon before this milestone, when I took part in the Brighton Marathon a week prior (no ballot!), as it had been my goal to run 26.2 miles before reaching 30. By the looks of it, I’ll be running Brighton Marathon in my 30th year, too! Such a shame to miss out on London yet again, but thank goodness for alternative options.
Fingers crossed for next year!