Cork City Marathon profile: Noreen O Callaghan stepping out for Grace

Noreen O'Callaghan: Meeting great people on her journey.

Each week we profile one of the runners taking part in the Irish Examiner Cork City Marathon this June

Name: Noreen O Callaghan Age: 46

Why are you running the marathon this year?

I signed up for the half. It sounded like a good idea at the time! I work as school secretary in Watergrasshill National School. Two colleagues last June went through a very difficult time. They lost their beautiful baby Grace — she had lived a precious hour. It had a big effect on the staff. We wanted to do something. The charity we have chosen is in baby Grace’s memory — all monies going towards the refurbishment of the quiet room in the Crk University Maternity Hospital.

What’s your training/diet regime like?

I am conscious of my diet and try to make the right choices. I’ve cut down on my alcohol consumption.

I’ve taken up pilates which is making a great difference.

Hardest part so far?

Putting the social life on hold for the long run at the weekend! You end up with runner envy seeing people gliding along.

Best part so far?

The people you meet on the journey. I am in awe of some of our club runners here in WGH running club. There are so many great people in the club from Claire O’Riordan, Colette O’Donoghue Aislinn Hurley, Nessa Goggin, Gwyn Conroy and the men are so friendly and motivational too.

Dave Murphy is a legend, Liam Tracey (PRO) and of course Bryan Crowley (always on the podium!). The slagging with Danny O’Farrell.

One piece of advice to anyone thinking of it in the future?

Just do it! You will forget about the cold, blisters and aches. It will make you stronger, fitter and it is a great opportunity to do good for wonderful causes. If I can, anyone can.

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