New British champion Natasha Cockram says she did not expect to finish Sunday’s London marathon after being injured in the build-up.
The 27-year-old finished 13th overall in a time of 2:33:19, which is outside the Olympic qualifying time of 2:29:30 that she is still hoping to hit.
The Welsh runner suffered an ankle injury three weeks before the race, which was won by Brigid Kosgei.
“I didn’t even think I’d make the start line,” Cockram told BBC Radio Wales.
“Just to make it to the start line felt surreal. I wasn’t even expecting to perhaps finish the race – the British title was just an incredible feeling.
“I wasn’t sure if my ankle would hold up, but I patched it up. I hadn’t run all week prior to the race. It just hurt too much.
“It was just [about] going out there and hoping for the best.
“There was no pressure because I wasn’t the favourite to win so I just went out there and wanted to do the country proud and that’s what I did.”
Cockram’s British rival Steph Twell, who reached world finals and won a European medal on the track, also missed out on the Olympic qualifying time.
The 31-year-old limped out around mile 16 as she failed to repeat her rapid time from Frankfurt last year.