Saturday 31 January 2015

Dartford parkrun 28 - if you clap they will run faster

Things aren't going great at the moment running-wise. I've had a small amount of discomfort in my left knee for a while and I've drastically cut back my training. I also took a trip to see the physio on Tuesday evening and have been doing some stretching and strengthening exercises of the muscles that could be contributing to my discomfort.

So the question as to whether or not I should run at Dartford parkrun event 28 kept bouncing around my head and during the walk (that's a clue) over to the park I paid close attention to how the knee felt. I couldn't feel any discomfort at all. Undecided I met Richey and Adam then we got onto the course inspection and set up.

dartford parkrun 28 [photo: dani]

There were a few icy patches around the park but fortunately none of them were in positions that interfered with the parkrun course. The grass/trail section had held up pretty well and actually felt firmer underfoot than it has for a few weeks. The incline was still a little slippery underfoot but still runnable.

So back at DpHQ, also known as the Dartford Harriers clubhouse, I had to make the final decision as to whether I was going to run. During the previous 24 hours it had improved to the point of feeling completely normal and it was this noticeable improvement that lead me to opt out of running at the event. My logic was that I did not want to undo the progress that I had made.

marshal7t [photo: richey estcourt]

So I became a marshal at 'Angie.... Aaaaangie's corner' which to anyone other than me and Richey is probably better known as the first corner. I headed over there with my daughter and just about made it there in time to point the 128 runners in the right direction. As a marshal the main thing to remember here is that you send them to their left on lap one and to their right on lap 2. Once they had all filtered through we had about 9 minutes of spare time until the lead runners would reach us for their second laps.

As I was directing the runners down Mick Jagger's Leg my daughter called me over and said 'if you clap they will run faster'. I'm not sure how solid the science is on that, but I gave it a go anyway. Once all the runners had passed on their second laps we headed back over to the start/finish where I was supposed to be barcode scanning.

give us a wave [photo: 7t]

However the scanning was already being taken care of so after spending a few minutes at the registration desk I wandered off to cheer the runners as they made their way towards the finish line. After this I started to collect some of the signs where I bumped into Adam and Jane who had already retrieved some signs for the far side of the course.

It was feeling quite cold by now and we were all quite relieved to finally make it back to the clubhouse where we were able to warm up, have a drink and a good old natter. I was disappointed to have missed a run but I thoroughly enjoyed marshaling and was very impressed with myself for being sensible enough to sit it out.

My full course description can be found in this post.
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