Runner of the week: Shane Delaney

Shane Delaney from Tipperary is taking part in his first marathon next month.

He will take on the Irish Examiner Cork City Marathon on Sunday, June 2 and Shane said he was inspired by a friend to take on the challenge.

“I know Nathan Kirwin from rehab, he planted the idea in my head and I said I’d do the marathon this year,” Shane said.

It comes six years after Shane received a life-changing injury while in Australia. 

“I was working in Australia and I went along to a festival the day before St Patrick’s Day,” he said.

“Loads of people were diving into the water and I joined in but I dived head-first into shallow water. I broke my C6 and now I’m a quadriplegic. 

I spent three months recovering in Australia before I could go home to Ireland and to rehabilitation in Dun Laoghaire. It was a very tough recovery.

Shane, who was involved with rugby before his injury, is now an award-winning wheelchair rugby player. 

He said he was introduced to the sport by a nurse in Australia who brought a DVD of ‘Murderball’ into him while he was recovering in hospital.

“I knew straight away I wanted to do that,” Shane said. 

He played for Ireland at the IWRF Wheelchair Rugby World Championship in Australia last year.

“I’ve travelled to Germany, England, to the World Championships in Australia and I was in Finland too after that. 

"There’s loads of travel involved but we’re there to play so I don’t get to see many sights along the way.”

Shane said his training, on top of the workout he gets playing wheelchair rugby, involves more exercises with his arms. 

“I’m doing more to prepare for my first marathon. I can already feel myself getting stronger. 

"So far, it takes me about two hours to go 28km so I think I can finish the course in about three or three-and-a-half hours.”

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