Rob’s Cork City Marathon blog: Week 9 - Break down the task at hand

It’s a massive task to run a marathon, a half-marathon and even a leg of the relay depending on your fitness.

If you look at it as one whole race it can seem quite daunting.

However, if you break it down into smaller parts it suddenly becomes manageable.

For example, if you're doing the full why not break the race down into stages and set goals for every 5 or 10k.

Don't even think about what happens after that distance, just concentrate on what you're doing right now.

Before you know it, you're nearly at the finish and you're wondering how you got there so quickly.

You wouldn't go into work and try to do everything you needed to do that day in one go would you?

No, you have your morning tasks, your mid-morning tasks, lunch and then the afternoon jobs.

The day is broken up and your work is scheduled.

If it wasn't eveything would be chaotic, so it may be a good idea to treat the race as a series of smaller runs - especially if you're dreading it.

Now, it doesn't matter what distance you're doing, a leg of the relay can be like a marathon to some people because they may not be regular runners or quite up to the fitness levels needed.

Give yourself piece of mind and reassurance and take away all the pressure by breaking things down.

If you need to walk at any stage, that's OK. There is absolutely no shame in it at all and it is a perfectly valid way of finish the race.

If you need a sharp sense of prespective take a look at what  Alex O' Shea from Ballineen Co. Cork is about to attempt.

He is going to run the length of Ireland in four days.

He'll have to have to run 100 miles a day to achieve the feat - the equivalent four marathons a day with just a couple hours of rest each night.

I didn't think that something like this could be possible but it has already been done by British ultra runner Mimi Anderson in 2012.

It makes running a marathon look a bit small fry, really, but some people are just so determined they can get their bodies to do anything.

Alex is certainly in that category.

I remember him passing me out last year in the Cork marathon. He was wearing full fireman gear.

Boots 'n' all!


Last week I wrote about feeling lethargic due to doing two marathons in two weeks. After some advice from readers of this blog I reduced my miles and took three days rest.

I did no running or exercises at all during those rest days and now I feel like I'm getting back to where I should be.

I have all my long runs done and the most I'm doing at the moment is five miles.

It pays to listen to other more experienced runners and to treat rest as a valid part of your training schedule.

Rob is running the Cork City Marathon this year to raise funds for the Mercy Foundation Cancer Appeal. You can visit his charity page and donate here

Follow and interact with @whatrodidnext on Twitter and tweet your training pics to @IrishExaminer using the hashtag #IECCM

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