Before I get into the newsletter proper first I would like to say thank you again to Marion and Lorna for their captaincy and vice-captaincy of GBRC’s ladies squad over the past year. Much of the hard work they, along with the other members of the committee, do happens behind the scenes and unknown to us. I would like to reiterate how grateful we all have been for their effort.
And on that note; thank you all for voting for me as Captain and for Debs as Vice-Captain. We are really looking forward to giving our ideas to the committee on behalf of the ladies’ squad and helping keep the fantastic spirit of GBRC flying high. If you ever have any feedback or ideas for us please do let us know.
A look back
What a month March was! It started with snow (and ended with it for me as it is snowing in Northumberland) and many races were cancelled that first weekend, most annoyingly the Essex 20 and the Stampede Zoo 10k. We then had the wettest XC of the season at Halstead both with rain pelting us from above, and snow melt making the puddles on the course “crotch-depth”. Although I did forget about the rain when it emerged that we had once again pulled something out of the bag to stay in pool A, huzzah! The week after saw some of the club travel down to the Grizzly only to find it had been shortened by 10 miles and you were expected to run through a blizzard; or we stayed local to once again face cancelled races and freezing temperatures. At this point I thought March was a write-off; however, it all came good on the fourth weekend when perfect conditions made the Essex Road Relays a happy hunting ground for GBRC PBs and the Colchester Half saw a sea of blue vests running into the stadium to standards and bests galore.
I am not sure we will ever see a March quite like this one again!
Another happy moment this month was the result of the vote for our Ladies Cross-Country Runner of the Year. I cannot be happier to pass this honour on to Anthea Colsell. She has had an amazingly strong cross-country season and managed to complete it with a smile on her face.
MANY CONGRATULATIONS Anthea!
… and congratulations go new Vice-Captain Deborah Cubberley on your engagement to fellow blue-vest Paul Hollidge this month. I am sure I speak for all of us when I wish you both all the happiness in the world as you plan your wedding and embark on marriage.
A look ahead
This month we head into marathon season. Paris, Brighton, London, and more! BEST OF LUCK to all of our ladies attempting to complete the 26.2mile distance this month. Marathons are achievable by all, however that in no-way diminishes how special they are and the effort required to complete the distance.
At the shorter end of the spectrum this month we also have the Little Bromley 10k. This is an Essex Champs race this year so will have a larger field than previous, however I am sure the blue-vests will still make up a large part of it and should be a great team event for all.
I will also note that this Saturday (7th) is Colchester Castle parkrun’s 5th birthday. I will be there with my parkrun hat on handing out sweet treats so if you didn’t get enough over Easter than please do join us at 9am at the bandstand.
You will get bored of hearing me say it… I encourage car-sharing to events where we can. Not only does it help the organisers as the car-parks are often crowded, but it means you gave someone to help calm the nerves as you travel to the race and someone to celebrate or commiserate with on the way home. So, I will be trying in these newsletters to highlight races I know members are going to so people can try to organise car-sharing where they can.
We also have the first round of Rodger’s trail runs this week. Whilst the runs are a competition, trail running is more about appreciating the countryside and good company so come along and have a go even if you haven’t tried it before. Rodger sets some great courses so I have no doubt there will be some stunning views along the way.
Last but very much not least; this month we all wish Hélène Tyler GOOD LUCK as she takes on the Marathon de Sables: a six-day 150+mile journey across the Sahara. You can send Hélène well wishes while she runs by using the link she has posted in the GBRC facebook group.
Welcome to Teresa Farmer who joins the club this month. Her husband Colin has been a GBRC member for a couple of years now and some of you will have met Teresa already at events where she has joined us. Teresa has already made fab progress on her 5k at parkrun and I suspect has a lot more to come. I know you will all make her feel very welcome.
What an inspiration!
March has yielded some AMAZING performances, too many to cover them all! I will not repeat the race reports here – they can be found on the website under race reports. However I would like each month to highlight some ladies have personally inspired me for the dedication they put into their training, the fears or obstacles they overcome and their courage to take on new challenges:
She likes to fly under the radar, however I can’t not mention Janine Simpson who completed her first 100-mile race during March. Truly the Queen of Distance; well done Janine, a fabulous achievement.
Hien Hoang overcame both a dislike for mud and a previously declared hatred for racing to take on both the Grizzly and the Colchester Half Marathon this month. Hien doesn’t race as regularly as some of us and has had to overcome a persistent niggle in her foot over the last couple of years. It is great to see her racing over the longer distances and perhaps a hint of more to come?
Emma Levett-Welham completed her first half marathon this month. She trained with dedication and could have stopped the clock earlier than she did, however opted instead to run with someone who was struggling in the later stages of the course. A show of true generosity-of-Spirit Emma; I know you will be back smashing that time over the half marathon distance before too long. Well done indeed!
And one weekend-two PBs: Eileen Shadford! To get personal bests in one weekend at both ends of the spectrum, 5k and 20 miles, takes some doing! An honest and fair reflection of the dedicated and cautious approach Eileen takes to training.
Runner of the Month
This month’s runner of the month has been discussed and agreed by both Marion and Lorna as outgoing captains and Debs and myself as incoming. What can I say about this lady? She joined the club with more enthusiasm than I have ever known to be contained in one person and has been an absolute pleasure to get to know. She has improved her running over both road and cross country (although she has mentioned in the past she is not sure she likes XC!). In February this year she suffered a foot injury that had her on the side lines and has patiently worked her way back, upping the distance slowly over the last few weeks and testing new insoles for her shoes that should help prevent the injury from coming back.
At the end of this month, her recovery looks to be completed as she has bagged personal best runs at both the 5k and 5-mile distances as well as completing the London Landmarks Half Marathon the very day after she laid down an assured performance at the Essex Road Relays.
Yes, it’s you! Runner of the Month for March 2018 goes to Magdalena Komorowska! Well done Mags!