My Running Life: Helen O’Hanlon

Helen O’Hanlon: trains five days a week, three times on her own and twice with a local club.

Helen O’Hanlon: trains five days a week, three times on her own and twice with a local club.


When did you start running and why?
About three years ago, I started running with a friend to get fit and to keep my weight under control.

What has been your biggest achievement so far?
My biggest achievement so far has to be my county medals for cross-country which I won last October, November, December and January.

What is the one thing you would change about running?
I would try to change my pace so that my training sessions would be easier than race day.

Where is your regular run route?
My regular route starts at the Treacy’s West County hotel in Ennis, along the bypass to Claureen roundabout and back to Treacy’s hotel – which is a total distance of about 10km.

What is your regular training schedule?
I run three times a week on my own – doing 10km each time on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. I also train twice a week with Ennis Track Running Club on Tuesdays and Thursdays and I take a rest on Saturday and Sunday.

What are you training for?
I train for all the local races which fundraise for charity, such as Clare Crusaders and a Meet and Train group for Crumlin children’s hospital and also some other local charities.

What do you wear on your feet?

I wear Adidas Run runners, which I find are light and have good support.

Have you any niggly injuries?
I have tired muscles now and again but usually with a little TLC and physio, I am all okay again before long.

What’s on your iPod when running?
Albert Hammond, Westlife and Imelda May. I also listen to my girly tunes like Girls Just Want to Have Fun and Sisters Are Doing it for Themselves.

What is your most embarrassing running moment?
I once got lost during a training session.

What is your favourite running book?
My favourite running books are The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Running by Bill Rodgers and Scott Douglas and How to Run by Paula Radcliffe.

What is your favourite running tip?
My favourite tip is to go at your own pace because if you do that, you will get aerobically fit and it is very important not to get breathless – so listen to your body.

Helen O’Hanlon is 46 and lives in Ennis, Co Clare. She is married, has two children and works as a Family Support Worker for Enable Ireland children’s services.

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