They have been pounding the streets, training hard and racking up mile after mile but now it is almost time for this year’s London Marathon runners to set off on their biggest challenge yet.
With just a few days to go, most of the runners are going through their final preparations and soothing last-minute nerves ahead of the iconic 26.2-mile route through the capital.
Clocking up his third London successive marathon, 39-year-old Adrian Stohr, from Sudbury, plans to focus on enjoying the experience, after being hospitalised last year following an attempt to beat his previous time.
He is running for Children with Cancer UK in an ongoing bid to raise a three-year total of £10,000 for the charity which gave him his first marathon place back in 2013.
“I’m just going to enjoy it,” he said. “I think that is what it’s all about when you are doing something so prestigious.”
Fitness instructor Lindsay Hobden, from Great Cornard, is also running for Children with Cancer, having completed her first marathon three years ago.
But this time the 45-year-old hopes to improve on her time and enjoy the experience.
“I’m really nervous about it but I am the fittest I’ve been in years,” she said.
First-time marathon runner Nichola Noble, from Great Waldingfield, is fundraising for St Helena Hospice, which provided care and support for her father before he died from cancer two years ago.
“A friend of mine did the marathon last year and I thought it sounded like a good way to honour his memory and help the hospice as well,” she said.
Liz DeAlwis, from Boxford, has been training since October with her running partner Baxter the beagle.
The 46-year-old is raising money for Asthma UK.
Having brought up two children who suffer with the condition, she has experienced its effects firsthand.
“I have been thinking of doing a marathon for years,” she said. “I can’t believe I’m going to be doing it now.”