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Feelings of dread as the clock ticks.

Byline: Llewela Bailey

JUST as the Olympic clock is ticking, there's a similar countdown in the Bailey household.

Except that we're marking off weeks rather than months - all with a mixture of excitement and, for me, a little dread The official London Marathon manual says that it's at this point you should slow down but it's hard when you know you've got 26.2 miles to run and you've just devoured a bag of donuts.

Jessica is fine and dandy after completing the Kilamathon last week. By running 16 miles she's convinced she can do the extra ten on the big day.

The booklet also says it's natural to feel panicky and I've had to stop myself reading about runners who have to be 'swept up' as dusk falls.

Jess says at the Kilamathon the crowd kept her going and she only felt a spot of lip trembling when they ran through an industrial site, which understandably didn't have a spectator in sight.

She's convinced the carnival atmosphere will ensure we'll run like the wind. As I've said before, she's a very sweet person.

We're swimming daily and doing circuit training at Cannon Hill Park as well as keeping up our twiceweekly visits to Birchfield Harriers. Last night, the cameras were out, with my old chums from Central TV filming our efforts on the track.

Meanwhile, we've purchased the kit, designed the vests and organised the hotel, which includes travel to the starting line.

Family and friends are doing their bit for the big day with son Jack marking out with military precision all the pubs on the marathon route.

You could say we're as ready as we'll ever be. But with the clock ticking, there'll be no let-up - not with a celebratory glass of wine to have in precisely 18 days and counting.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Mar 29, 2011
Words:304
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