by DI Matt
We rolled into the car park at just before 09:30 both of us excited to meet up with the fitMK crew, Binty was slightly more nervous than me as she was going for her first sub 20 minutes 5k in over a year.
As we got out of the car I noticed Victoria pull up, we stopped and chatted this pretty much involved me giving her some banter on her night out the evening before, Victoria forgot some of her clothing and went back to her car to get it, I debated waiting for more than moment before seeing Binty edging towards the sign up area I knew that until she registers at events she is never at ease so for my own safety I thought it best to follow her and talk to the fitMK members after I had registered.
After registering and collecting our race numbers we met up with the rest of the fitMK crew and chatted about our nights before the race (Heidi seemed to be convinced that getting extremely drunk was the best way to get a personal best, I offered to give her burpees to help cure her hangover but unsurprisingly she declined).
The race announcer then asked us to head over to the start. They went through the customary announcements and warned us all that the race would be icy, I had the feeling everyone was just going to run their normal race regardless of the ice.
The Chicks Race
Binty as always was starting at the front ready to go, most of the other fitMK runners were mid-pack. The nervous bouncing started even Heidi and Sarah stopped talking as much. Then they were off starting 10 mins early.
Me and the Chaps cheer squad felt we had been missing a couple of members at the start but we couldn’t work out who, then we noticed Sam and Sian casually rock up to the start line about 2 minutes after the race start had started, Sam set off but Sian decided to interrogate the officials as to why they had started the race 10 minutes early, they argued that everyone had been cold hence the early start but Sian wasn’t having any of it and made it known (in a nice way) as she set off we shouted and encouraged her that she could still win the race she didn’t seem so sure.
Me, Caspar, Sean, Darren headed through the underpass to get a better view and talk about our race tactics.
We then saw Binty who seemed to be ahead of the lead bike we later found the second place lady (about the only non fitMK runner in the top 10) had gone the wrong way and the lead bike had gone off to re-direct her). As she approached we shouted at her telling her how well she was doing before telling her not to look at us and pick up the pace. I then sprinted across the main road (not my wisest decision) to try and get a picture of her as she finished unfortunately she beat me in hence no photo in the blog. Binty had done it and completed her 5k in 19:58 and thus getting under the 20 minutes mark and meaning I was likely to get a more peaceful afternoon.
The rest of the chaps support squad joined me taking the more sensible route on the path. Sean kept himself amused as we waited.
After what seemed like a long wait the second runner came in, closely followed by a flying Tori who has been back with us at fitMK for only a few weeks. We cheered and shouted at Tori as she sprinted to the line. Tori was not long followed by Ruth who ran one of her fastest times ever with both the Sarah’s and Dawn not far behind, all three had a real look of pain on their faces which made me feel proud as I knew they had both given everything to the race, Heidi unbelievably smashed her personal best despite seeming a touch “pissed” when she first turned up and dually got plenty of abuse despite her great time.
Christina was next in, I was extremely impressed to see her running so well after a really tough Kettlebells workout on Friday night, she had told me after the event she was nursing some serious DOMS but somehow managed to find the mental fortitude to push through. Sam had undoubtedly the best sprint finish of anyone on the day absolutely nailing her finish.
It was also great seeing both Sue and Emma finish their first race for some time both had different reasons for not being able to compete but both did so well, Batty as always was doing a fantastic job encouraging Emma to beat her on the sprint (I am not sure Batty could have won anyway ). Victoria and Lottey had the final fitMK sprint in on the 5k and Lottey pushed all the way, encouraged by all the fitMK supporters she beat Victoria in. Once everyone had finished we all hugged and congratulated everyone before the girls posed for the customary photo.
As soon as the photo had been taken in was straight into the 5k race awards. Binty got called to the front to receive her Prosecco (the winner’s award) and Tori got a bottle of wine for her third place both fantastic achievements.
The Chaps Race
If you do wonder why I haven’t spoken about Sian she was doing the 10k and I had to start warming up before she had finished but she did really well despite starting 3 mins behind everyone else she still finished the race in 1 hour.
The announcement had been made that the Chaps race was to start in 5 minutes and the briefing had begun, most of us were not paying any attention to this and had been warming up for a good 10 minutes as we had already heard it all during the Chicks race.
When I had been watching the chicks race I had started to doubt whether this would be a good idea as my legs we heavy and achy from all the training I had done but I blocked this from my mind.
They then called us over to the start of the race, we jumped, flexed and swivelled to keep our muscles loose and warm. We lined up I wished good luck to my fellow fitMK runners and got ready to run. The countdown began 3-2-1 we were off.
I started quickly as I always like to do overtaking a few runners in front of me, a young lad had shot of at the front, I tucked in behind him conscious of not getting carried away and running too fast.
The first 1k came around quickly I clocked 3mins 37 seconds I was happy with this as I knew I had run faster the week before so it wasn’t too fast, the second k came around a bit slower but I still felt good those concerns of achy legs were no longer a worry. I turned to head under the bridge as we came back on to the lake and I was greeted by a massive cheers from the fitMK girls who were on the other side of the lake but were still pretty deafening, about 10 seconds later I could hear them shouting to Caspar that he could catch me, I knew he was close.
As I came from under the bridge I knew I had to continue to push my lungs were hurting now and my legs felt like they no power (it felt very different from the week before) but I couldn’t think about this I just had to keep pushing. Just before the 3k marker Caspar and Andy also a fitMK runner came past me, I sat in behind them and tried to stay with them, the lungs and legs just weren’t there, the distance between us just slightly crept up. By the time 4k marker came around Caspar and Andy had about a 10-15 meter lead on me, but I knew I just had to keep hurting it was the last k I had to dig deep. The last k seemed to last forever but I kept digging in trying to keep my failing legs from slowing down, I passed Paul one of our fitMK photographers and knew I wasn’t far from the finish, I went under the bridge and heard the raw for Caspar and pushed on, I turned to run up the hill at the finish it was Heidi’s turn to shout and encourage me, I didn’t smile or thank her I just gritted my and sprinted to the finish line as hard as I could.
I saw and ran straight pass the fitMK supporters who were quite possibly the best cheers squad I had ever heard and pushed through to the finish, I was glad I done it, the power and the time wasn’t my best but I knew I had given it my all, I collected my medal and proceeded to fall on the floor.
Once I had composed myself I got up and congratulated the winner and Caspar before heading back to the group of well-wishers it was now times to support everyone else. We cheered and shouted as next in was Dave (an honorary fitMK member) followed by Griff who like Christine before him had put a superb run despite doing his Kettlebells class only two days earlier.
It was then over to the Chaps 10k race Andy had a superb last 5k and went from 5th up to 2nd place with a fantastic time of 38mins on his 10k, it was great to see another fitMK member in the top 3 (I must also say Caspar did get 3rd place in the 5k with me in 4th). After Andy Sean was the next fitMK member in and he didn’t disappoint with a fantastic sprint home, he was then followed in by Darren who Binty attempted to sprint in with she just couldn’t quite keep up with his awesome speed. We knew both Sean and Darren had both run really quickly but we didn’t know just how fast, Sean had taken 2 minutes of his previous personal best and Darren had knocked a staggering 4 minutes of his previous best. Somehow in all the excitement we had managed to miss Andy collecting his wine, we all congratulated each other and posed for our photos.
This had just been a local run but man was it good fun, it felt like we had taken over the whole event and I think everyone enjoyed our encouragement. I can’t wait to see you at our next one.