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I mentioned in a previous blog the risks of over-training.

If you are starting out running, cycling, swimming or any other sport,  Training 2,3 or 4 days in a row can be doing you more harm than good.

In the case of running it is important to get your stride and technique right before you start any intense training.

It is also important to remember to let your muscles recover from training as they might not be used to the impact of running.

I had a busy enough week running around the country. On Wednesday evening I was in Dundalk for a 10 km race that started in the college. The weather was ideal for running and the scenery as we came around by Blackrock Co. Louth was spectacular.

I ran a steady enough race. The last mile was a bit tougher than I would have liked. I crossed the line in 51 mins and then headed for a quick leg massage before hitting the road for home.

There were a couple of local runners sitting beside me waiting for a massage. They all seemed to have the same problem as me for the last one or two miles so it was good to know I wasn’t the only one struggling.

I rested up for a short while before hitting the road to Longford for the Royal Canal Half Marathon on Saturday morning.

There were close to 200 people running the half marathon with many other athletes running 10km, 41km and 53km on this looped course.

After a slow start due to the path being pretty tight I settled into my stride. My plan was to see what the course was like, what areas I had to work in and where I could relax.

The course was fairly flat with two short sharp climbs midway through and at the end of each side of the canal.

Before I knew it I had completed two loops of the course. The path started to open up as a few people that were in front of me were running the 10km. 6.7 miles in I was running a lovely steady pace. I had to remind myself not to get carried away and stick to this pace.

I started the last loop of the course. 10 miles in 1:25, not a bad time!

I had covered the spot where I had my blister with Vaseline but it was starting to hurt a bit. I tried not to think about it and just focus on the path ahead of me.

10.8 miles in and I got this shooting pain in and heal and I had to stop running. I was in absolute agony barely able to walk. I pulled down my sock and saw that a fresh blister had burst. What was I going to do? So near to the finish line and yet so far. Should I take off my runner and finish the race barefoot? I managed to start walking again. I’m only two miles from home. Time to bite my lip and push through the pain. Pretty soon I was a mile from the finish line and started to push on. The finish line was pretty crowded due to the four distances being covered. I found myself in a sprint finish with another man. We both crossed the line in 1:55:32

I spoke with John and Philip from Oranmore/Maree A.C. for a few minutes afterwards. We were all pretty happy to have that race in the bag.

I spotted a Civil Defence Ambulance and went in search of a plaster. In fairness there were enough Civil Defence members for all the athletes that were running.

I hopped up on the table as three civil defence crowded around me. Two of them nearly hit the floor as I kicked off my sock. The third started filling out a form. I asked her if it was an ‘Incident Report’ as she started writing down my details. Gp’s name, Next of Kin, Have you filled out your Census?

I asked her if V.H.I. would cover this treatment as her colleague put a plaster on my heel.

Hopefully that was the worst incident they had to deal with that day.

That brings me to 146 races in 25 counties.

I also hit the 500 mile mark for the year.

I also got Leinster ticked off the 4 Provinces challenge and I’m going after Munster next.

I’m hoping to be back running in the next couple of days.

I have ‘bootcamps’ and couch to 5km on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7.00 p.m. Contact me to join.

I am doing a “Firewalk” on May 20th for the Manuela Riedo foundation. You can make a donation on the following link https://give.everydayhero.com/ie/colm-sfirewalk#/