Pic 19

My running has been a huge part of this story. It became an essential piece in the jigsaw. I believe my experience from running equipped me with the mentality I needed to come through one of the most complex surgical procedures there can be and the long difficult recover that followed. My experience from running is one of the reasons I am still here today. 

Running is never easy. It is never automatic. It always involves a certain amount of pain and discomfort. If you are fitter, you will only run faster.

When I run badly (which is more often than not!) I would often adopt a strategy of run what you see. Literally get around the next bend or over the top of the next hill and so on. If you keep doing that, the finish line will come to you.

I just applied the same tactic to my long difficult days in recovery. All I wanted was some little bit of progress for each day that came. That could have been the removal of a tube, to sit up, to get out of bed and eventually to talk, eat, drink and walk for the first time again.

All of the inches would make the mile.

When I had made a full recovery I felt I owed my running. I would have been devastated if I could never run again, but yet, my recovery at that stage was miraculous as it was.

So in 2012 this wonderful circle was closed when I ran my first post-cancer marathon.

I still run regularly and participate in races in my local area.

I have run 7 marathons

1984 – DUBLIN – 3 hours 22 minutes

1988 – LIVERPOOL – 4 hours 8 minutes

1989 – HUMBER BRIDGE – 4 hours 23 minutes

1999 – DUBLIN – 3 hours 28 minutes

2000 – BELFAST – 3 hours 40 minutes

2000 – DUBLIN – 3 hours 29 minutes

2012 – DINGLE – 5 hours 0 minutes (the only post-cancer marathon, so far!)

I hope to run a few more!