Approximately 250 Police Officers and their families converged on the grounds of the National Police College of Jamaica for the JCF’s Medical Services Branch (MSB) ‘Force it Out Challenge’ 5k Run on Sunday, October 28.
The ‘Force it Out Challenge’ is a wellness and lifestyle competition geared toward helping Police Officers improve their lifestyle with physical activities and proper nutrition. The competition was launched in 2017 that saw Police officers from across the island participating in physical activities and maintaining a balanced diet to gain fitness and lose weight over a period of time.
Detective Corporal Desroy Sangster who is assigned to the Trelawny Division was named a champion for the challenge. When he started the challenge he weighed in at 350 pounds and he has since lost approximately 80 pounds.
“This 5k Run is a new addition to the challenge, which is a Memorandum of Understanding between the Constabulary and the National Health Fund and seeks to further enhance the health of our officers”, said Dr. Claudette Campbell, Clinical Nutritionist, and Nutrition Consultant for the JCF at the MSB. She believes the challenge was well needed as policing is a physically demanding job which takes a toll on many persons’ health.
“We are primarily seeking to improve the health status of Jamaican Police officers. Some of the challenges they are facing are non-communicable diseases such as hypertension, diabetes and elevated cholesterol levels and those are the conditions we are trying to address, as we believe once you’re in good health you will be productive”, said Campbell.
The first place female winner of the ‘Force it Out Challenge’ 5k Run is Constable Lastine Hylton-Brown. She decided to participate in the competition to motivate her colleagues.
“We as officers do not have a very balanced diet due to the long hours of work and the stress level of the job, this does affect our health. So I decided to get a team together and we frequently do exercises, do our check-ups and encourage each other to keep going,” said Hylton-Brown.
Constable Ovell Burton, the first place male winner in the competition, also shared similar sentiments “I decided to be a part of the challenge as it dealt with the overall wellness of the participants, such as their nutrition as well as their mental and physical state. I am glad that I decided to be a part of this initiative,” said Burton. The competition wraps up on November 30 with a recreational activity with all the participants.