Former England rugby union captain Chris Robshaw has revealed he hit a “dark moment” a few miles into the London Marathon, but the “incredible” crowd kept him going.
The 36-year-old athlete raised more than £9,000 for a charity he founded with his wife, classical singer Camilla Kerslake, which supports young people from less privileged backgrounds through sport and music.
Robshaw said he felt “shattered” after running his debut 26.2-mile race in three hours 52 minutes.
“It was a horrible pain for parts of it, but the camaraderie between everyone, the treats I got from the little kids, the bananas and sweets, that spurred me on, because there’s definitely a dark moment out there.
“But I completed it, I got a time which I wanted to do, so I’m really pleased.”
He added that the “dark moment” where he hit the wall “came quite early” around Canary Wharf where there are fewer spectators.
“The support’s a bit quieter out there, whereas when you come back into town the support’s absolutely incredible,” he said.
“My hamstrings are just about hanging on. I’m going to be aching for some time.
“Other than that, I’m proud of my first marathon. But will I do another one? I don’t know.”
Robshaw said running was a “very, very different” challenge to anything he had faced in his rugby career, and the rainy weather had contributed to the “huge mental test”.
He said raising money for the Kerslake Robshaw Foundation also kept him going.