DIARY: Rugby, cross-country and hills

Another busy weekend has past. I have just returned from a long day in Dublin which began with me watching the Dublin Intermediates, all the while getting a 40 minute run in while cheering on the team. The cheering probably didn’t have anything to do with it but the team secured a bronze medal and one of our young upcoming men, Sam Mealy, took an emphatic victory. As he turned his head back at the finish line, he could see no one in sight. Jason was our third scorer gaining a crucial place on John Brennan at the death before being ambushed by Jason Reid and losing it right back. It was enough in the end as the team took 50 points. They tied with Donore but had four men across the line first.

My frantic running around Tymon Park was my second real run after returning from first the recurring ankle injury I aggravated during the Dublin Novices (effectively ending my cross-country season). Just as I prepared to return I got a bad head-cold. After two weeks of no improvement, I was put on antibiotics and eventually it cleared enough that I dared a few short jogs this week.

Kevin’s Way

Saturday, Aoife and I decided to run out Kevin’s Way for her 2 hours 9 minute run. She was meant to race the Avondale 4 Mile Fit4Life trail race the next day as a workout, so we wanted to ensure her legs were not too fresh so she would not race too hard. This meant taking it handy, which was good for my body. Coming back was a bit of a shock despite our easy pace up from Glendasan to the Wicklow Gap. Once the stony section passed behind us we faced some serious bog, mud and oversized puddles. I counted myself lucky losing my shoe only once and taking just a mild tumble on the way back.

We ran outwards and upwards for 10km before turning back. With about 35 minutes to go my body realised it was no longer fit and my blood sugar plummeted. I became quite dizzy at this point and eager to get home, so while the body tried to slow me down, I decided to speed up. Once I had replenished the 1000kcal I burnt in a feasting bonanza accompanied by a half hour nap, I was feeling much better. After constant sabotage of my training since July, I now hope to stir the body back into action.


The other exciting project of the weekend was finalising the development of “Lydiard training for rugby” a booklet and set of programmes we are preparing for a local rugby club. Lydiard came from that background and his principles have had great success as a conditioner of athletes from almost any sport be it Gridiron, rugby, kayaking, swimming or horse-riding.

I love the look of the programmes and looking at the full-body conditioning and the technical, tactical and agility workouts required for these athletes, have given me some new ideas on how to implement such a comprehensive package for runners. We may have less focus on technique, tactics, agility and strength/power but we still need it and think I have the method to piece it altogether in a balanced way that can be managed by athletes.

Hopefully, I’ll get time to work on it at some stage next week, a busy week at work awaits as I am flying off to La Santa Sport for our (newly) annual trip with the club for a full week of non-stop workouts and racing. No better way to get the body back in action than such a crash-course in my experience. With good food, plenty of naps and warm weather, everything is easier. Not spending two hour stuck in a car every day likewise does wonders for your help and your mood.