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Robs Blog: Chasing Kona: Week Nine: Emma’s Fury


The snow is so deep Asho has to get into my footprints behind me 

We’ve had weather warnings over the last twelve months that have been carried and promoted by the media that didn’t come anywhere near to occurring. Yellow or orange or red weather storm warnings which never came to pass.

The last one caused the shut down of most of the country.

The last warning that was. The storm itself never actually materialised.

As a result of the previous “boy crying wolf” weather disaster warning stories that didn’t happen I was sceptical of this one. In fact when I heard this round of stories of snow storms and red warnings I scoffed that I’d believe it when I saw it.

Wednesday arrived and along with it came the heaviest snowfall we’d seen in Dublin in about eight years. Myself and Ais ran into work with bags on our back but when we saw how bad the conditions actually were we decided that we would just open for an hour. Read More

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Robs Blog: Chasing Kona 2018: Week 8

I’d felt really tired in the middle of last week and Ais pulled the plug on a couple of my sessions. What ones I did were either shortened or less intense than originally planned.

This week was looking like being a bit messy from a training point of view. Work hours were going to be shuffled, I had a days work outside of the shop on Thursday which meant I most likely wouldn’t get anything done and Ais was away Friday and Saturday at a family wedding.

Ais put my big training day down for Tuesday and moved some of her stuff around to accommodate it. Orla and Grace in the shop also covered me for some hours during the week. It was another reminder that Ironman might be an individual sport but I very much have a team behind me supporting and helping me train and race, without whom I’d never be able to do this.

Tuesday was down as a big day, 4000m swim, five hour bike and run off it for one hour twenty. I was a bit nervous as I still felt tired and wasn’t sure how I’d cope with it. Read More

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The Strava effect 

“There’s no way I’m putting up a run and advertising the fact that said I ran that slowly. Everyone will see it and think I’m really slow”

But if a session isn’t on Strava then it didn’t happen right? If I don’t post it then no one will know I actually dragged my arse out of bed at 5am to go to the pool and knock out that 4000m swim before work.

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Robs Blog: Chasing Kona 2018: Week 7: Confidence

When I first set out to qualify for Kona Aisling was the first person to believe I could do it. Alan Ryan was the second.

Shortly after I started to train for my first attempt at qualifying I asked Alan what he thought. Despite being our most successful Ironman athlete to date with six Kona qualifications and two Kona podium finishes as well as having held the Irish Ironman record. Alan is just about the most down to earth guys you can meet. If you didn’t know how accomplished an athlete he is you certainly would have no idea from talking to him.

Last weeks blog can be found here if you missed it: Robs Blog: Week Six: Candy Floss

Alan immediately and unreservedly said that he thought that I could qualify and that I should have a go at it. In my experience Alan, like Aisling isn’t prone to blowing smoke up your arse. So given his qualifications to make such a statement I believed him.

Myself and Ais were chatting to Alan last weekend and he asked how training was going. I hesitated long enough for Aisling to step in and answer for me. She said that she thought that I was doing the best training that she’d ever seen me do. Better consistency, better quality and for a longer sustained period than ever before. Read More

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Robs Blog: Week Six: Candy Floss

Pupper is outside the back door and barks to be let in. When Ais opens the door she comes in proudly carrying a bone like a trophy. She drops it on the floor, looks at it blankly then barks at it.

“The bone” I think “The big doofus is barking at the bone” and vaguely wonder why. But this is Pupper. There doesn’t really need to be a why.

The bark attracts Coopers attention. He wanders on over to see what the fuss is. He looks first at Pupper doing the barks then looks down at the bone.

Cooper takes one more look at Pupper then picks up the bone and walks off with it.

Pupper’s left standing there wondering what’s just happened. Whatever it was it doesn’t seem to be what she intended. She looks puzzled. It’s hard to picture a Boxer looking puzzled but Pupper somehow manages to pull it off.

“What do you think she was barking at?” I ask Ais. She just shrugs.

“What do you think is going through her head when she does something like that?” I ask.

“Candy floss” Ais answers. “That’s all there is in there, candy floss” Read More

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Robs Blog: Chasing Kona 2018: Week Five: Things You Never Say To Asho

When I looked at this weeks training plan I mistakenly wondered out loud “Is this meant to be an easy week?”

This was then answered with just the tiniest hint of annoyance…

“Why don’t you come back next Sunday and let me know if you still think that was an easy week” Read More

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Our 25 Rules Of Nutrition 

People ask us all the time about nutrition as it relates to sport, health and what we eat in general. I guess they ask me because I’m skinny. At six foot tall (ok 5’11 3/4″) and usually hovering at around 68 kilos I probably look like I know what I’m doing food wise. It’s very important to note that I’m not a nutritionist, neither of us are for that matter but I guess we have found what works. For us at least.

If I’m honest I think we have probably found what works for most people. There isn’t anything magic about what we do. We both fall of the broccoli, salad and boiled chicken wagon regularly enough. Most often landing face first in something that contains chocolate or is entirely made of chocolate. But most of what we do is simple, straight forward and sustainable.

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Robs Blog: Chasing Kona 2018. Week Four. Making waves

Ais woke me early with a coffee in bed. I was sitting there looking at some rubbish on Facebook or Twitter when Ais suggested that seeing as we were up earlier than we’d planned I had time to get in a swim before our meeting in the city.

I didn’t need to be told twice and grabbed my swim bag and another coffee on the way out the door. Read More

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