Whose voice are you going to listen to?

I’ve learned a lot of really great lessons from running. Things like learning to push myself, learning to rest properly, learning to trust people and learning to have discipline. The biggest lesson I’ve learned however, is learning to listen to the right voices, and ignore the wrong ones. Continue reading

On running into ducks on a pond

This evening, when I got home from work, I was not feeling like going for a run at all. And I didn’t have to go for a run. I could have put it off until tomorrow and called it a rest day. But something made me tweet for encouragement to get me out the door. The responses I got were unexpected but highly motivating.

It was this tweet that really motivated me into going for my run, thankful that I could run at all.

I am really grateful for everyone who tweeted me. It gave me the motivation I needed to get my gear on and get out the door. And I am so glad I did. Because if I hadn’t gone running:

I would have missed hearing one of the big cats at the zoo letting out some mighty roars and growls.

I would have missed seeing some ducks using a flooded part of the path as an impromptu pond.

I would have missed breathing deeply the scent of freshly mown grass.

I would have missed the camaraderie of recognizing other runners in the park as we passed each other twice in one evening.

I would have missed the little kid waving at me from his stoller as I ran past him and his mom.

I would have missed the sound of birdsong.

I would have missed being out in the fresh air  of a cool, spring evening.

I would have missed the chance to appreciate my body and what it can do, what it’s capable of.

I would have missed being reminded not to taking running for granted.

I would have missed being able to say ‘I did it’.

I would have missed running.

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Knowing when to fold ’em

Some runners will tell you there’s no such thing as a bad run.  I think after today I would beg to differ.  Or at least, I would say that there is such a thing as a run that’s gone badly; but what you can take from it determines whether or not it was a bad run.

Today, my long run went rather badly. But I did learn some really good lessons from it so I’m not calling it a total loss.

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Alcohol and marathon training?

I’m curious about what other runners training for marathons (or long races, ultras etc) do regarding alcohol and training. I’ve heard some people say they don’t drink any alcohol at all while training, others say they do. I don’t drink very much myself, a bottle of wine over a weekend once, maybe twice a month. Or I might skip the wine and have a bottle of my favourite ginger beer or pale ale instead. So I don’t think I’ll give it up yet, although I do think that closer to the marathon I’ll set alcohol aside until after the race. So what are your thoughts and habits? Take the poll and please do leave a comment to explain below!

The road so far (or; deciding to run a marathon)

“So why do you want to run a marathon?”

Someone asked me that recently, when I first told them I was going to run the Dublin Marathon.

My first response was: “To prove to myself I can.”

But, after the conversation was over and when I was on my own again, I began to think it over. I realised I had to change my answer.

The real answer is: “Because I can.”

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Marathoner in Training!

So…this happened!

secretsout

Si, me and ASD in London

confirmation

Yes, it’s true! I’m running the Dublin Marathon this October 2015.  EEEEK!

Big thanks to ASD & Si from @100kmtoBrighton for helping me with my reveal! They were the first of my twitter friends I told (when I met up with them in London) because they have played a big part in inspiring me to run a marathon!

So this is why I haven’t been running this month! It’s going to be a long, tough, crazy year of running ahead and I decided on this impromptu break so that I’d be fresh for training to start in April. I didn’t want to burn out before I even began!

You see, I’ve known I was going to run a marathon for a long time now, well over a year in fact.  Everything I’ve been doing the last year has been to prepare me to start training for a marathon.  I started going to a personal trainer, Michael from @myptdotie to help me get in shape so I could tackle the training.  I also hired mentor/coach @Shona_D_Thomson to help with putting together a training plan and to support me during the lead up to the marathon.  I know that with these two on my side I cannot go wrong with my training! So long as I follow all their advice, which I will!

Why keep it a secret for so long? Mostly because I wanted to be in the right head space and be absolutely 100% certain that I was prepared to take on the training! I needed this ‘dressing room’ time before ‘running onto the pitch’ with it!

In the coming weeks I’ll be writing more about my decision to run a marathon and the lead up to my registering for it but right now, I just want to say how excited and nervous and terrified I am but how confident I feel that I’ve made the right choice.  In my head, I’ve already crossed that finish line!

I could use all the good luck and positivity I can get so please leave some in the comments below!

Placebo, running and happiness headaches!

That was one of my last tweets from London, where I just spent two days having the time of my life.

You probably (if you follow me on twitter) know that Tuesday was devoted to seeing my favourite band, Placebo, play at the Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith.  I had an amazing time, both in the queue before the gig and at the gig itself.  It was unforgettable and epic and awesome! Of the few photos I took of the gig, this one is my favourite:

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But, as this is a running blog, I’m not going to go on and on about Placebo and the gig (even though I could, just ask my friends!).  It’s the second day I spent in London that’s relevant here; on Wednesday I became a running tourist for a day.

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Lessons learned at the St. Patrick’s Festival 5k!

On Sunday, 15th March I ran the St. Patrick’s Festival 5k. I didn’t get a PB like I hoped but I did learn a lot of good things that will help my future running/racing plans. I can’t say this was my favourite race of all time, but I think it was the most beneficial one!

Before the race I took my usual photo of the start line, which was also the finish line!

The start and finish gantry

So what did I learn from running this race?

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Training Log: 09/02/2015 to 15/02/2015

I have been really lax about posting my training logs, but I haven’t been feeling guilty or anything. I suppose I just needed a little break from the blog/log/posting. Anyway, I had a really good week this week so now is as good as time as any to get back to it, right?!

Monday 9th February
No running today but I had a one hour workout with my trainer. I did a circuit of weights and cardio. It was good, really kept the heart rate up and I managed more weights than usual.

Wednesday 11th February
I’ve been running my shorter distances faster than ever and really feeling confident about my abilities lately. I’ve also had to switch back to evening running for a bit and I’m still not sure how I feel about that!
Distance: 3.1km
Time: 24:48

Thursday 12th February
Keeping up with the shorter, faster runs but pushed it a little further tonight.
Distance: 3.61k
Time: 29:14

Saturday 14th February
Planned a long run in the morning, was going to go 5 miles but I felt so great I ended up running further! I kept to a slower pace deliberately; I wasn’t trying to beat any records. Perfect weather for running too, cool but not cold, breezy but not windy, bright but not sunny. I also had my usual one hour workout with my trainer, concentrating on arms and core with weights and pilates.
Distance: 9.1km
Time: 1:16:04

All in all I count this as a very successful week! I accomplished what I wanted to do, pushed myself to do more and ended each day smiling for it.

Next week will be somewhat different. I am going to the Netherlands for the weekend to visit a friend. I will try to get a run in but won’t feel guilty if I don’t!

High Fives all around! Raheny 5 race report!

Yesterday I ran my 10th ever race, the AXA Raheny 5 mile road race.  It has been one of my more enjoyable races to date and was both challenging and fun.

Going into the race I wasn’t feeling too confident, having been sick again over the Christmas holiday and having run far less than I planned in the first couple of weeks of January, I was questioning my level of fitness and whether or not I could run the whole thing.  I never once thought of not running this race though, just wasn’t sure what my race strategy would be.

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