Whilst waiting at the start the crowds started to gather and we got talking to a boy about 16 years old who was a seasoned runner with over 50 Parkruns to his name. I knew this only because of the 50 Parkrun t-shirt he was wearing.
Then we rounded the corner at the bottom to head back up and complete the small lap as I call it. As we start the first big lap I explained to Dexter that we would see mummy a few times around the run and if he felt like he couldn't carry on we could stop. He wanted to go on as far as he could which was great and as we reach 1km and our first meeting point we just waved and carried on.
Dexter was having fun and was surprised at how many people were cheering us on. As we got to 2km started to say he wanted walk but I knew that he could carry on further he's just 5 and winges at the littlest things. So when we saw Sarah-Jane Clark and Liam we waved again and kept running.
As we reached the end of the first big lap I knew Dexter could carry on but I didn't want to push him too much on his first Parkrun and at 3km we met Mummy and started to walk.
I was very proud of him as 3km was the furthest he has ever run and he was going to carry on the route still and finish the full 5km. He was going to walk with Mummy whilst I carried on to the finish then come round again to pick him up. I left them with 20 mins on the clock and finished with a time of 29 mins so I was chuffed with my final 2km. Once I had finished and got my barcode scanned I ran back down the route to meet up with Dexter again. I caught up with them at the 4km mark and I persuaded Dexter to run again and his cousin Liam joined us too. As Dexter was running in his England shirt with his name and age on people kept cheering his name to give him a boost. We came round the back of the cafe and had about 300 metres to go and we met up with a group of runner who were doing extra km's and they ran behind us and cheered Dexters name until he crossed the line to complete his first ever 5km and first ever Parkrun in a time of 40.09mins. I was ever so proud of him and it was at that point that I remember that he is only just 5 years old and he has just done a 5km run. He has promised that next time he will run faster, but if he just did it again full stop it would be great. He enjoyed the run a lot but I think he was more taken by his barcode, and that he had to look after it until the end.
If anyone want to join in the Shepley 10k please get in touch via this blog or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org
Please remember everyone keep running