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The seagulls were laughing...

The seagulls were laughing as we waited for the train. They knew. It was 6.45am. People stood around quietly with their see-through marathon bags on their backs, most in shorts despite the early morning chill. Gathering their thoughts and courage for the task ahead. And the seagulls kept laughing. It is ridiculous when you think about it.
More bag-carrying individuals got on the train as it brought us closer to our reckoning, silent, somber. Others chatted among themselves about their training, the long runs, 20-milers and whether they were a good idea or not.
We got to Merrion Square, dropped off our bags, went to the toilet (separately) and then just waited around for the damn thing to start. People tried stretching but it’s futile – you’re unstretched again by the time you get going. Long queues formed for the toilets as everyone went again, another way to pass the time.
They played the national anthem. Finally, at 9.10am, we could run.
I was off! I didn’t feel as much pressure as…

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