I’ve spoken in some of my previous blogs about the fact that I have been putting in some long training sessions regardless of the weather.

These training sessions seem to be paying off.

Last Saturday I ran my 24th Half Marathon in Kinvara, along the Galway and Clare border.

Friday was one of those typical West of Ireland days. Rain , Rain and more Rain.

run (1)  I reckoned I would have to revise my running gear for Saturday mornings race. The race directors were out on the course on Friday and had been keeping us updated on social media.

By the Saturday morning the rain had eased up.

I was listening to the radio on the drive down to Kinvara. The d.j. was talking to a lady about the upcoming Dublin women’s mini marathon. Both women had completed the mini marathon in the past and were looking to take part again this year. From listening to them their training seemed to be non existent and they didn’t seem to have much of a plan in place.

I understand that everyone is different. Some people are quite happy to a run a 5km or 10km while others like to run 1 or 2 marathons every weekend of the year.

I do however believe that you should put in some type of training regardless of your goals.

Getting your breathing technique right could  greatly improve your results.

Correcting your stride could reduce the risk of injury and severe pain.

The following women’s mini marathons are coming up:

Castlebar April 30th ; Galway and Dublin June 5th

 Entry for this years Galway 5 km series will open on March 24th.

I arrived in to Kinvara with just enough time to collect my race number and jog down to the start line.

I had gone for the arm warmer, calf sleeve and singlet combination.

As I locked my car and made my way to the start line I noticed two women standing next to me. One of them seemed to be shocked at my racing gear or lack of it. Being a typical Irish man I thanked her for the compliment and made my way to the start line.

Kinvara F.M. were broadcasting from beside the start line. “Out of Control” by u2 was belting out as I did my warm up. It could be a good day yet.

This was my third time running this course. I decided to take the first kilometre easy enough. I had forgotten how sharp the hills were. The first couple of miles were just a steady drag. I just settled into a rhythm and kept an eye on my watch. As we turned after about 4 miles we were facing into a head wind. Nothing too exteme. We then had a straight long road ahead of us for a few miles.

The scenery was pretty amazing. The famous Burren landscape of stony fields and windswept trees.

I attacked the hill at mile 7 before settling back into my routine. I was aiming for around 1:56 and I knew there were one or two sharp hills to come yet.

I was surrounded by women as I again attacked the hill at mile 11. If I was on my own I would  probably have been roaring like a mad man.

At this stage we were down to kilometres. I got back on to the main road a bit. I started to push myself a small bit as I know there wasn’t long to go.

Some of the guys who had already finished were cheering me on as I headed towards the finish line.

I could see the final corner ahead of me and I picked out a spot where I would really push for the line.

I was really pushing myself as I came around the last corner. I made a nice sprint for the line and came in at 1:55:56

I was using this race as an alternative to doing a long run on my own and also to get the race day feeling which can be a great advantage when it comes to training for a big race.

I was quite happy with my performance. My pace throughout was fairly steady.

My next running workshop will be on March 25th.

If you are interested in Personal Training, group sessions or any tips and advice please do get in touch Click Here