So, teamvolt made its first race appearance at the Easter weekend Boston UK Marathon and Boston UK Half Marathon. The kit was on show and it was PB’s all around for the team. Result!
What was more poignant was watching all the, 800 or so, other runners, their supporters, the event organisers, the volunteers, the local community etc. You see, when it comes to ‘race day’ we are so focused on our own aims/goals (understandably) and so often everyone else involved passes us by in the euphoria of our personal achievements.
Arriving in a very relaxed mood, and due to excellent facilities, there was no need to rush to a starting pen, or trek a long way from the car and so there was plenty of time to take in what was going on around. The marshalls who were giving up their day for the benefit of the runners were out in force and only too willing to help with any query given to them. The race organisers had all elements covered so that everything was so convenient. The local community came out to show their support and provided plenty of encouragement to all these ‘strangers’ who had descended on their town for the day.
The best spectacle of all was watching the runners and the supporters that had made the trip to South Lincolnshire on a mid-April morning. There were so many stories, by so many people, with all different running backgrounds. The winners of the marathon (Adam Holland – 2:29:35 & Myra Jones – 3:02:08) and the half marathon (James Straw – 1:10:40 & Natalie Burns – 1:20:48) will be quite rightly celebrating their performances and the prizes that come with it – simply amazing running! Then you have Steve Edwards who was running marathon number 777 (yes, that is not a typo – check him out on Twitter @TeamEdwards700) and all of the ‘regular’ club runners who were running yet another half or full marathon with their club mates cheering them on (lots of Skegness Coasters & Caistor Running Club tops on display – well done guys!).
But it was probably seeing another group that made us smile even more. With these runners, there was no obvious allegiance to a local club and it wasn’t clear what their goal for the race was but what was obvious was the determination to finish and to do that to the best of their ability. Some runners, who had clearly picked up an injury during the race were going to finish no matter what and were finding the inner strength to get across that line. The bonds between fellow runners to help encourage those who were maybe finding it tough at times was admirable. The friends and family who were completing their first ever half or full marathon – and making sure they took every stride together, holding hands as they crossed the timing mats. Then there were the proud parents looking after their ‘children’ to make sure they got some post-race food & drink (and the ‘children’ looking after their parents doing the same!).
Looking around the finish areas there were lots of embraces, proud faces plus many ‘selfies’ being taken so that they could rightly share their achievements with the world. It was brilliant to see.
We often talk to people who run but say that they are “not a proper runner”. The truth is, we are all ‘runners’. Whether you are at the front or at the back, completing your 777th marathon like Steve Edwards or in the process of training for your first ever parkrun. If you are out there running, you are a runner – and don’t forget that.
Whatever your goal……..#makeithappen