Run Republic caught up with Carrick Aces runner, Niall Condron. A long time friend of Run Republic, Niall is the first runner in our weekly series of “The Finish Line” where we talk to club runners around the country. The goal of the series is to highlight the achievements of runners of all abilities around Ireland.
What is your current goal?
Current goal is to get under 3:15 marathon with the aim to get as close to the 3 hour mark next year.
What is your favourite song?
Arcade Fire – Reflektor. Great to run too
What is your favourite movie?
Rocky. Very motivational movie
What is your favourite TV Show?
House of Cards
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not training?
I play a bit of football with a few pals. I like to read a bit and just chill and watch tv with my girlfriend.
How did your journey begin?
About 8 years ago I started running to get fit for football and lose the extra weight I had put on in college. I found running so relaxing and it really helped my mood. I was getting decent times and increasing my distance so I stuck with it and began to prefer it to football as I got back what I put in.
What were the early challenges you faced? How did you over come them?
The nerves before entering races. I had a fear of not finishing the race or not getting a good time. I began to just focus on my own time and not worry about what times people around me were getting and just enjoy the experience.
My first marathon really scared me but I worked hard and done the hard training and listened to advise from seasoned marathon runners. That feeling crossing the finish line was indescribable.
Do you used data for training? What wearable tech do you use?
Yeah. I use Strava to monitor my run and track my progress. I train 3 times a week with a group and don’t monitor pace or distance and then twice a week I aim to run at 85-90% race pace.
What was your the first time you knew you could really compete at a high level?
I came in the top 3% in a 5km in Dublin about 6 years ago. I had been doing well in races regularly getting top 10% without fully running close to my potential. That gave me the motivation to drive on and push hard to beat my pb’s.
What have been your biggest achievements to date? What are some of your PB’s?
Sub 18 min 5k, sub 40 10km, sub 89 half marathon. I’m due to complete my 10th marathon next week so that is a nice milestone to get through.
What would you do differently if you had to start again?
I’d be smarter with my training. 1 – 2 interval training sessions with 2 medium runs and 1 long run per week. I’d have given up football much earlier to focus more time on my running.
What’s next for you?
To step up to ultra marathon level. I missed almost all of 2015 running due to injury/new job/buying a house and it took me until September 2016 to finally get back into proper running routine. That would be a big regret of mine I lost so much time and had to start again to get back to the level I am at now.
If you had one piece of advice for readers of Run Republic, what would it be?
Enjoy your training. Enjoy the races and take in the atmosphere especially in the bigger races. Work hard and you will see the results.