Running: My Journey & Beginning Yours

If you've been following me on any of my social media accounts (my handle is "Sadhbhers" for pretty much everything), then I guess you probably already know that my favourite way to keep fit, mentally and physically, is to run. I'm living really rurally so I'm not a gym bunny, nor do I know where I can find a great gym nearby, so ever since I began running it just seemed like the best way for me to stay active and maintain a healthy lifestyle. I started running back in January of 2015, with the support of my mom, and of course my wonderful community, and today I'm here to share some of my top tips on how to get started, and where it all began for me


I'm just going to assume that most of you guys have heard of RTE's "Operation Transformation." If you haven't then you can catch all the deets over on their website OT.RTE.IE. Believe it or not, but my journey began with Operation Transformation's running plan. No, I was not overweight in anyway, but I can openly say that I wasn't very happy, and I needed something positive to channel my energy into. The plan that I followed was a "couch to 5K" kind of thing, which set out basic guidelines as to how much I should run/walk during each session. You can catch the link to all those deets over HERE

While Operation Transformation was the best kickstarter for me, bringing me from non-runner to regular 5K runner, when I reached the end of this programme I needed something that would keep me going; here's where Parkrun came in. Parkrun is a weekly timed 5K walk/run that takes place in a variety of locations across the world. Our local parkrun is a really valuable asset within our community, and I guess you could say that this was one of the forces I needed to become more comfortable with keeping training consistent at the time. I would aim to run 5K on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. 

Parkrun Cork locations

While the parkrun was great for me for a little while, it wasn't long until our local route became a little bit boring for me, after all I was running the exact same route 3 times a week! This is where my Nike+ Run Club app came in. The Nike app is amazing for tracking your distance and pace, so I found it really useful when I was trying out new routes, and especially when I moved out and had to switch up my whole routine.

When I made the decision to increase the distance of my run, I hit a wall, and I didn't really know where to go for advice. After a little bit of searching I found the UnderArmour Map My Run Trainer. This let me put in the distance I wanted to be able to run, my current ability and the date I wanted to be able to run the new distance by. I'm pretty sure the Nike app is capable of doing this too - but I just wanted to keep everything separate. Upping the distance was probably one of the best decisions I've made to date. Yes, it means a lot more stretching and a little bit more pain, but I feel like I'm finally beginning to believe in the no pain, no gain slogan. 

In short, that's my story. There have been bad days and good days, bad weeks and good weeks - but that's the same with any sport. If I could give my younger self any running advice, it would be this;

  1. Find someone who believes in you, and share the experience with them
  2. Push yourself out of your comfort zone
  3. Don't give up, even when it feels like it's your only option
  4. Find apps/articles/music that enhance your running experience
  5. Buy a good pair of runners
So if you want to get fit, physically and mentally, then there is no time like the present to begin your own story!

Until next time,

*DISCLAIMER: I'm no expert in any way, I'm just speaking from experience

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