Time for women’s football to be recognised. 

I post here about an issue I feel strongly about. It has nothing to do with racing or adventure sport but everything to do with discrimination towards women in sport. 

For those of you that still laugh at Women’s soccer I hope you have watched the World Cup. It has been excellent. As a coach of a women’s team for years this issue is close to my heart. I have had comments about how it must be nice to coach ladies soccer, it must be easier and you get to see nice fit women. These guys that made these comments are totally ignorant to women’s football. During my years coaching I learnt that women work just as hard to become the best players they can. They have the exact same attributes of skill, strength and character as men do. It may be true in some cases that men are stronger and faster than women but this doesn’t mean the women’s game isn’t as good a sport or shouldn’t be advertised or followed in the same way as the men’s.  Women are exactly the same as men in terms of passion for the sport and this should be recognised. 

Anyhow I won’t rant for long but this article below is worth a read. I also advise anyone out there to make the time to watch the final between the U.S. and Japan, no doubt it will be a cracker.

http://mashable.com/2015/06/30/fifa-alex-morgan/

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NUI Galway 8km

I’m there in one of yellow t-shirts, around the second row, but most importantly I have to mention the two guys to right of the photo in yellow t-shirts. These two lads decided to sprint off the start line at full pelt. One of them was onfront of me and was roaring laughing at his mate! By the time the first bend arrived they were swallowed up by the pack but it was funny to see  and also great to see people having so much fun .
It was a  stunning sunny morning with 650 or so people taking part. My plan was to try and beat my previous pb of 30 minutes. I rarely race in 8km races and due to all endurance training of late this fast pace race was going to be a real test.  It turned out to be 8km run at real high pace, including a first kilometer in 3.15 min. I realised I was going out too fast but to be honest I just wanted a hard training session and the hope of a PB at the same time. I held a good pace throughout, averaging 3.40 min km and finishing in 12th place in 29.12. It was great to see my girlfriend and one of my best friends both getting pb’s too. All in all a very successful morning and off to bubble football for my sisters 30th soon after. Happy birthday Linsey !!

Bubble football group!

Results list and some stats below..

http://www.redtagtiming.com/results/NUIG8km_2014.pdf

http://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/610794196

Argentina and back to training

As the world cup is starting tomorrow, I had to give my prediction here! I’m going for the slightly outside chance of Argentina. They should be a very exciting team going forward and it is time for Messi to shine on international stage.

I managed a good gym session yesterday and just in from my 45km loop on bike now. Considering the race last Saturday it has been good to manage some training this week. I attached some links below. The first one is a good link to bike descending, something I am trying to improve myself. There are so many things to improve and work on, only more training and time will decide if I can perfect some of these.

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2010/04/descending-tips/

Connemara adventure challenge official race report

http://msai.ie/userfiles/CAC_Race_Report_20141.pdf

Dingle adventure race official report

http://msai.ie/userfiles/2014_Dingle_Race_Report.pdf

Arranmore Football and Running

Photo: Arranmore 2014

A great weekend with friends.

This annual event on Arranmore island in Donegal, basically a country of it’s own has become an annual event for me since 2008. I have made lots of friends and always feel so welcome on the island. This year I finally got the chance to run a lap of the island with one of the group, Ollie Mullins, that competes at a high level in half marathons. He aims to some day represent Ireland at masters level. We were knocked out of the football in the group stages therefore we decided to delay the time in the pub and complete this 11km.amazingly scenic run of the island. I wish I had a camera with me but some day this would be an ideal place for an adventure race. Not only hilly, boggy and scenic for running but the majority of roads are tarred and the biking could be fantastic. I have attached a map of the run below and hope to get a hold of a few more photos.

http://connect.garmin.com/activity/512554542

We travelled the 176 miles home this afternoon all in agreement that this annual event will continue to happen for many a year. Thanks to Jerry and Pat early for their incredible welcome as always and see you soon again !

Run for Fun

http://connect.garmin.com/activity/472295724

Another nice run up behind the city this afternoon. I paced myself at around 4.22min/km and kept it reasonably steady throughout. It was great to see the rain clear up just in time to get out. The last few weeks have been going well and this run felt comfortable today. A long cycle will be needed , depending on time, either tomorrow or Friday. My football season is nearly over so it will soon be time to completely focus on adventure racing, Football takes up at least 5 hours of training time a week and it is a very different type of fitness.

I have recently started taking SiS gels on my longer session and find them quite tasty. I also have upgraded to a stronger post session recovery shake called ON 2:1:1 recovery. this is less tasty but contains more carbohydrates than most recovery shakes and around 30 grams of protein depending on my dosage. Does anyone out there have any thoughts on these supplements? My main issue in the past has been losing weight and strength in the summer when doing extra cardio. My thoughts for this year are to take the heavier recovery and a few more gels during training. My balanced and high protein diet will do the rest, I hope!

Rest Week!

http://www.irishtriathlon.com/index.php/2013/11/hawaii-ironman-watch-the-1-hour-tv-special-here/

Last week turned into a mostly rest week with some studying of form of competitors from the race on Saturday to a few light gym sessions. I also returned to playing some football for the winter months. I have missed most of my teams season through injury and then race training so its nice to get back to playing a bit. My plan for the winter is to do some long low intensity runs with some gym training with core and intervals on the bike. I will also add in a few sessions on threadmill for bad weather with some high tempo running. This mixed with football training will keep me tipping along nicely. My only problem will be minding my dodgy ankles. This may need some extra balance, plyometric and wobble board work.

To get things started again I have posted a good link for those triathletes out there.