Flatulence whilst queuing is generally frowned upon, I’m not saying I’ve done it but I have noticed it gets an awkward reaction in the line. If it does happen I’ve been advised  that the best option is to ignore it, because generally people will be more concerned that you think they let it slip. We’ve all become too familiar with the talk about queues, it’s become a fact of life during this crisis, it just can’t be avoided. There is rules to queuing – you can’t leave the line. Picture this, you’ve got to the top of the line to get into Dunnes stores after standing for 2 hours and you just realise you’ve left your wallet in the car on the other side of the carpark, what’s the etiquette here? At this point in your life all the power lies with the person behind you – will they let you back in?. All sorts of personalities can be can be seen in a queue – “the sneaky snake” always spots the best available gap in a queue. And if there is none, they’ll make one. Diverting attention, pretending to be friendly, these guys know every trick in a book. After all, lines only exist for people to cut in. Then there’s the “Mother Hen” who saves a spot for their friend to jump in, wouldn’t we all love to be able to queue by proxy!! And still even in a time of social distancing we’ve all come across the “battering ram” that tries to intimidate you to move forward even though the line’s not budging.   And then there’s the awkward chats. Some  in the line love to say “This looks like the new norm.” God, I hope not, I can’t handle the queuing. Some people love the misery of a long queue, they  swim in it, lather themselves in the frustration that comes with it. I tend to only queue when I really have to, generally for coffee or when I’ve  no other choice, like in airports or for medical appointments .

We’ve been so used to rushing, we’ve sold ourselves to the brutes of efficiency and speed, in our frenzied lifestyles not a minute was wasted.   We have a need for speed. We didn’t

Patience, courtesy of artist Anna Nielsen,

need to be patient, we could circumduct it, there was ways around waiting. Amazon have estimated that it could lose up to 1.6 billion dollars in revenue if its pages took one second longer to load, yes one second because we just won’t wait . We are used to getting quick answers to complex questions. But the good news is that impatience is a behaviour, not a personality characteristic, it can be changed. Patience has its roots in the Latin word meaning “to suffer” a concept too familiar to all runners, because running and exercise performance may not only be limited by levels of will power but more importantly by the ability to tolerate discomfort – YOU HAVE TO SUFFER!! In testing the pain tolerance of athletes in 1981, researchers induced ischemic pain (the kind of oxygen-deprivation pain felt when running a race) using a highly pressurised  blood pressure cuff around the upper arm. The elite athletes were capable of suffering for longer than the club athletes, who in turn lasted longer than the non-athletes. This showed that the best athletes were willing and able to suffer more and for longer (Scott & Gijsbers, 1981). The ability to tolerate the pain and suffering of hard training isn’t inborn.  The same study in 1981 measured the pain tolerance of the athletes several times over the course of a competitive season. Their pain tolerance was modest early in the season, when the training load and level of competition was low; and it was highest in the peak season during hard training and racing. So an individual’s pain tolerance is clearly trainable to a certain degree, but only through familiarization and adaptation. Whether you’re new to running training for your first 5-K or a wirey, grizzled veteran logging long runs for your 100th marathon, running is an exercise in delayed gratification. Nothing teaches patience like running does because impatient runners become injured runners. This is true of all aspects of running, not just training: Be patient during your race, get the pacing right; be patient while you recover and don’t race too often; be patient if you want to run faster times or run  longer distances because progress can be very, very slow.

There are rare moments in every runner’s life when  goals that had once seemed impossible are accomplished. The sense of accomplishment experienced after weeks, months or years  of hard work reinforces that patience is not a virtue it’s a skill that just like fitness takes time to develop. In short, running is possibly the very  antithesis of the impatient world that we live it’s all about waiting ……..waiting …..and more waiting. The internal struggle fought between running and mental willpower ultimately leads to redemption and liberation through achievement, just like the creamy flat white waiting at the end of the queue.





Posted by

I qualified with an Honours degree in Physiotherapy from Trinity College Dublin in 2004. Since graduating I have worked in St. James Hospital Dublin and have worked in all the areas of speciality within the hospital including cardiorespiratory, orthopaedics, rheumatology, care of the elderly, neurology, burns and plastic surgery among others . I have also completed a post graduate certificate in acupuncture in UCD 2009. The Physiotherapy Department in SJH has strong links with Trinity College Dublin (TCD) and I have supervised undergraduate and postgraduate physiotherapy students on practice placements and also delivered lectures on the undergraduate academic programme in TCD. I have a keen interest in all sports and currently plays with Cill Dara RFC 1st team squad, and Milltown GAA. I have previously worked as Physiotherapist to Co. Carlow Senior GAA Team, Milltown GAA, Leinster Junior Rugby Team and Cill Dara RFC. I am an experienced runner and competed in the Dublin City Marathon in 2002. I continue to participate in running events and multisport disciplines such as Gaelforce West, Gaelforce North and the Motivate Challenge. I have a particular interest in strength and conditioning. I utilise this knowledge of resistance training in the treatment of his clients. I am committed to continuous learning and development in order to ensure the optimal level of care is offered to my clients, and with this in mind I am currently undertaking a certification in Strength and Conditioning (CSCS) with the NSCA.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.