Very few milestones can top a wedding. One of them is getting married while trying to finish a full marathon.
In April 2009, Rachel Pitt and her fiancé Garry Keates earned the distinction of being the first couple to get married during that year's London Marathon. In 2011, Andrew Ford and his fiancee Katrina Scaife followed suit, taking a detour after running 20 miles just to get married. In 1999, Mick Gambrill and Barbara Cole took a break from the marathon after running two miles just to tie the knot.
While the long-distance running event has attracted a variety of runners - from experienced ones to novices to runners donning wacky costumes - many couples are enticed to enter the world's largest marathon, so that they can have a unique and truly memorable wedding day. But, as both running a marathon and getting married entail adequate investment of time, money and effort, getting married during a marathon offers some unique logistical issues that couples must address.
Professional wedding photography expert David Jones advises couples who wish to get hitched, whether in a traditional manner or during a race, to have a reasonable timeline to prepare for their big day. This gives them much leeway to prepare for any unforeseen events that may crop up during preparations for the ceremony. As the couples can trade their wedding dresses and tuxedos for sportier garb and their high heels and formal shoes for running shoes, they still have to consider other important things like whether to finish the event first or get married while running the race as Mary Martin and Raymond Donaldson did when they got married during the New York City marathon. Also, they should also consider finding a wedding celebrant, booking a post-race wedding reception venue, and getting the services of a London-based photographer.