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Jelly babies, jelly legs and 26 miles of smiles

April 27, 2017

British Transport
Police Federation
April 27, 2017

Jelly babies, jelly legs and 26 miles of smiles

London was buzzing on Sunday as spectators lined the streets to cheer on a record 40,000 people taking part in the London Marathon. Amongst those pounding the pavements was BTP Federation's very own Kevin Street, Chair of B Division (TFL). As Kevin explained in an earlier article, he took part to raise money for the charity Crohns and Colitis UK, which has supported his wife Carlene.

Kevin completed the course in 6:16:34 and has so far raised £500. If you would like to boost that total you can do so via his JustGiving page. In the meantime here's what he had to say about the experience:

BTPF: Kevin, well done! How do you feel?
KS: Wow what an experience! My immediate thought was that I would never do it again and the 'jelly legs' caused me havoc for a couple of days but now the experience has sunk in I will be applying again next year. It was just a fantastic event, so many people lined the streets cheering you on and calling out your name. At certain points if it wasn't for the crowds you would give up but their support it really helps, and it's emotional; when you see some of the causes people are running for you know that all the pain is worth it.

BTPF: Were there points when you felt like giving up?
KS: After about 18 miles I really did but in the back of my mind I knew some friends of mine would be cheering me on and more importantly I knew my wife and children would be there. I didn't want to let them down and wanted them to be proud of me. I was running for Crohns and Colitis UK and finishing it would mean more money for a charity which is close to our heart.

BTPF: And how was it when you saw your friends and family? Did they give you the boost you needed?
KS: My friends stood at the 14 and 21 mile mark and family were along Horse Guards Parade, shouting and screaming. The big smile I got from them - especially my young boys - really made it worth it and they have gone back to school and told their teachers how proud they are of me. It was even published in the school newsletter so parents of other children congratulated me when I staggered into school.

BTPF: We all saw the exhausted runner from Chorley having to be helped across the finish line. How did you feel as you neared the end of the course?
KS: Like a lot of other runners I decided to sprint down the Mall to the finishing line and I felt such a huge sense of achievement knowing that it was over and that I had done it. It was emotional and I was physically shattered; there wasn't a single part of my legs and feet that didn't hurt! Afterwards we attended a reception for the charity but they forgot to tell me it was upstairs. If anybody saw me and weren't aware they would wonder what on Earth I had been up to. Each step was a struggle and a real effort.

BTPF: What memories will stick out in your mind when you think back to Marathon Day?
KS: The crowds stood out for me, and the support and food (jelly babies) they gave you. Every corner you turned there were more people shouting your name and pushing you along. I can remember on the last few miles the jelly babies had turned into sandwiches and cake which to be honest I couldn't have eaten even if I had wanted to! There were a couple of runners who really stood out: a man running backwards (who I overtook - thank goodness) and a bare-foot man dressed as Jesus with a cross on his back (I didn't get past him).

BTPF: It sounds like you've got the marathon bug! What you would you say to anyone who is thinking about trying for a place in the ballot?
KS: All I can say is YES, DO IT. It will be one of the best things you ever do. I wasn't fast and I'm certainly not built like a runner but getting around the course is everything. I did say never again but having had a couple of days to reflect, I'll be applying again for 2018.

If you're inspired by Kevin to take part in next year's London Marathon the ballot opens on Monday 1 May and closes at 5pm on Friday 5 May. Visit https://www.virginmoneylondonmarathon.com/en-gb/how-to-enter/ballot-entry/ for details.