Marathon de Paris Expo

Flatlay of club t-shirt, race number, headband and arm warmers ready for Paris Marathon

Ok, so we arrived in Paris yesterday and settled into our lovely, luxurious hotel. Despite being in the centre of the city it is fairly quiet, the bed is comfortable and the pillows are amazing. However, my leg still hurts 🙁

Queuing at the airport
Queuing at the airport
Our flight on the departure board
Our flight on the departure board



We settled ourselves in and then went out to meet Di, Mike, Patrick and Angela for dinner. They had chosen a fairly central Italian restaurant… But it felt like it was miles away. We walked… And walked… And walked… Finally, we got there. We were all very hungry, so didn’t spend a lot of time reading the menu. I had pasta with aubergines, which was good, but I could have eaten so much more! Fortunately, it took my mind off my leg pain or a while. By the time we had finished eating, we decided it was bedtime, so we headed straight back to the hotel. However, as we got to the door, we noticed a supermarket opposite and decided that some French biscuits would round off the night nicely, so we had to buy some!

Being sensible and going to the Expo

This morning we got up fairly early. I had considered doing the 5k run, but Kirsty didn’t want to do it and logic prevailed. If I couldn’t do it, I would feel stressed and disheartened; by not doing it, I have fresh legs.

We decided to go straight to the Expo, which was quite a long journey on the metro with one change. We were on the second train by the time I realised that I had forgotten my ‘convocation’ and doctor’s letter. 🙁 I had to head back to the hotel whilst Stu and Kirsty continued to the Expo.


Arrival at the Expo

I'm not sure that a 3 hour marathon counts as 'jogging'!
I’m not sure that a 3-hour marathon counts as ‘jogging’!

I finally made it there and was surprised that there were no queues. My doctor’s letter was stamped and then I headed around the corner to the four-hour band. I handed over my entry letter and was then asked for my passport. “Passporte?! Non, je n’ai pas de passeport! J’ai… J’ai…” I started fishing in my handbag for my wallet with my driving licence in it and must have looked like I was going to burst into tears. I’m not sure whether the chap was joking, or whether he took pity on me, but he handed my number over – THANK GOD!

I then met up with Stu and Kirsty, and we went back to get Kirsty moved into the green wave with me. YAY – we can run together!

We then went through the Expo, stopping for me to examine the goods on every stand and admire many items of clothing meant for people with athletic physiques. Kirsty was quite taken with a pretty Asics running jacket with a Marathon de Paris logo on it, but she decided to examine everything else before spending money.

We moved onto the Skechers stand where a lovely Californian guy extolled the virtues of the new Skechers shoes. Kirsty tried some on and was even persuaded to go on the treadmill… But again, it was necessary for us to continue looking at what was available.

Kirsty having fun at the Expo
Kirsty having fun at the Expo

Buying some motivational Bondi bands

Fortunately, headbands were on sale – they fit everyone, so I decided to splash out… And Kirsty did as well. My favourite headband is my ‘looks like walking, feels like running’ one. Partly because I like the slogan, but also because the colour suits me and it matches my Lordshill top. (My red one doesn’t suit me). I bought another blue one that says ‘EAT. SLEEP. RUN’ and a black one that says, ‘I might be slow, but I’m not last’. I hope that’s true!

Vegetarian chicken

We walked around the rest of the expo, before heading back to the Skechers stand for Kirsty to buy the trainers. Then we decided to go to the Uncle Ben’s Rice Party. €5 for a rice meal, banana and 1.5-litre bottle of water sounded like a good deal. We paid, got our vouchers and then chose our meals: coconut chicken curry or mushroom risotto. Obviously, I chose the risotto and was part way through eating it when I read a sign that said it was made of rice, cream, mushrooms and chicken stock. Hold on… Chicken stock – AARRGGHH! I’d assumed that it was the vegetarian option. 🙁 I seem destined not to be able to find vegetarian risotto. Oh well – the banana and the water were nice.

We’d looked at pretty much everything in the Expo and it was getting busy. I decided to make one final purchase: a pair of Marathon de Paris arm warmers. In the past, I have mocked a friend for wearing them, but it is my intention to wear a t-shirt tomorrow and I figure they may come in handy. Fortunately, they match my ensemble!

Final race prep

We then headed back to our hotel for a break, before going out to check out the nearest Starbucks, which is Kirsty’s vice. My leg was hurting and I was feeling sorry for myself, so I couldn’t resist a piece of the creme brûlée cheesecake. I’m not sure that’s ideal race preparation, but nothing’s going to plan and it lifted my spirits for a short while.

I’ve pinned my number on my t-shirt, but am saddened that my name isn’t printed on it like everyone else’s. I’m not sure why. Oh well, it’s on my t-shirt!

Paris Marathon flat lay
Ready to race!

We’re now back at the hotel having a break. I’ve taken some anti-inflammatories and will ice my leg again soon before we head out for tea. I’m still worried but am less stressed now that I know Kirsty and I will run together.

Now I just need to repeat for 260 minutes: I CAN DO 10 MINUTE MILES!

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