Ah Sure it’s only a 5k and we cover double that distance at training sessions says Val AKA Shorty but then put that horrible word RACE into the equation and everything goes out the window!!!

Personally I find the 5k distance a hard one to conquer as being a bit of a chunkster myself I find it hard to go full throttle from the start and keep it up but it’s something I really want to work on so I said I would sign up for a few 5ks and the Athletics Ireland race series is a good one to start with.

It was an early start on Sunday morning and off I went to met Val and Breda in the visitors centre at 8.30am where I bumped into Lobby who greets me with – Well are you ready for the Hill? Thanks Lobby I didn’t even know there was a hill so the nerves were creeping in a little but sure I did 8 hills and sprints on Thursday so why do I think I can’t run up a hill today I said to myself – Because of that stupid word RACE!!

We headed off for a warm up where the three of us chatted about our tactics, mine was just get to the finish in a respectable time and Breda who is only coming back was feeling the same as me but Valo on the other hand was talking about making herself hurt and pushing it so we knew she meant business and with the way her training is going at the moment we had no doubt she would run a blinder.

The atmosphere and buzz around the Phoenix Park was great and with the Operation Transformation leaders on site Val felt like she knew them personally and found herself over hugging them – I swear to God you can’t bring her anywhere!!

It was such a lovely morning to be a part of a Championship race although there weren’t many from the club but the most important thing was we had an O50s team who were strong contender’s consisting of Lucy + Breda + Val. Anyone who knows Val knows that she knows everyone so she was pointing out the competition – She had her Game Face on now as we lined up – I on the other hand was trying to figure out how I was going to put one foot in front of the other almost like I was a child learning to walk but a few deep breaths and off we went.

The start was just insanely fast and I pretty much couldn’t see Val after the 1st 20metres that mission she was on was truly in toe…. The 1st 1k was nice and flat so you could figure out your breathing and legs and make sure they were both in sync and to my surprise both were playing ball for once so I kept pushing on.

At 3k there was a hill – Yes the dreaded hill but before the start we had a chat with one of the volunteers who gave us the heads up and said before the hill you have a great downhill so use it and this is exactly what I did so to my surprise I didn’t find the hill that daunting which was great.I could see Breda in my sights working hard up the hill so I tried to hurt myself a little bit more as I knew that the last 1k was a long flat straight. My goal was to get under 25mins and as I looked up at the clock I knew it was going to be – I know 25 mins ain’t any great shakes but for me personally I was thrilled and mainly because I felt so good coming into the finish and I didn’t struggle from start to finish like I normally do – Today was a Good day I told myself!!

Myself and Breda were absolutely chuffed with our runs as we both just wanted that under 25 min time which we both smashed…..Val was so far ahead of us that we had to go find her at the end – She was extremely happy with her performance and then to find out that they came 3rd in the O50s was just great and Well done to Val + Breda + Lucy you’re just flipping amazing!!!

Just a few more mentions as it would just be rude not to!!

Well Done to Martin Doyle with his great time – Who then treated himself to a delicious sausage roll and a can of coke afterwards, that’s great training!

Well Done to John McGeown who ran a blinder and is aiming to duck under the 20 mins in the Docklands 5k – So watch this space and Zero pressure!

Well Done Katie Nugent on a great race – Oh to be that young again!

Well Done Nicola who is trying to race herself back to fitness and also had great support form Lobby!

Well Done to Sadanand Magee who had a super run and to think I was only half way through the race when he was finishing!

Well Done to Will Martin Smith for taking one for the team and allowing his lovely wife participate in the race while he played daddy and cheer leader with his two beautiful girls (Happy Birthday to them both!)

We all headed for what we all really came for which was the coffee where we met some of the Real runners who do the long run on a Sunday morning – what a way to Rain on our parade Maria Finnegan and Clare Rowley(Happy Birthday Daddy Rowley!!) us all delighted with our 5k and these wagons looking freshed faced after an 8 miler!!!

Then to top it all off Michael and Karol start boasting about their Wicklow way race the day before – Jesus could you imagine the pair of them boasting now you know I’m lying!

All joking aside it was a lovely morning with a lovely bunch of people and look forward to the 5-miler.