Dublin Marathon – Meet the Runners – Aidan Montague

October 29, 2022

With just a few days to go until the Dublin Marathon, we have been talking to some runners about why they are running the Dublin Marathon, as well as some questions about their running journey.

Next up is Aidan Montague of Lucan Harriers in Dublin. 

Hi Aidan, tell us a little bit about yourself?

I'm a 54 year old runner from Dublin, a member of Lucan Harriers running club, and originally from Stillorgan. I work in office supplies, but life brought me to Florida for 7 years. I opened an ice-cream and frozen yogurt store. I used to play a lot of rugby and played over in America as well, so I was always fairly fit and into keeping fit. I remember there was a little Italian restaurant a few doors down, and he came in asking for support for the Brew Run which was happening soon, its basically Parkrun with beer. After the run, people would get a free beer as well as their medals. That was my first real experience of a running community. When I moved back to Ireland a couple of years ago, I moved to Lucan, and pretty much straight away joined the Lucan Harriers. They are a fantastic bunch, and I'm delighted I joined.

How did you get into running?

I started to get into shape and loose weight. I remember one Halloween having chicken in a basket with mashed potatoes and gravy in a restaurant, and feeling desperate after, totally stuffed. Somehow I had hit 16+ stone without noticing. That was it! So the exercising and proper eating kicked in. It was a while before I dared race, everyone seemed so fit and serious, but was vary glad in 2010 when I took on the Raheny 5 and then the Terenure 5 and found how enjoyable it was.

Why are you running the Dublin marathon?

I suppose a little bit has been peer pressure from the club. I've been training with them for a good while, but some of the focus has been on shorter races. I am only really comfortable after 10 miles, as it becomes a challenge and you feel like you're working for it a bit more. I really enjoy the slog, and know you have to train properly and consistently to be able to do it. The opportunity came up to run the marathon. I went with a group for the long runs, and got into a routine and that was it really.

Have you run many marathons before? Have you any run this year, or planned for next year?

I've done a few trail races when I was in the US. Those races were on bike trails, so they were really tough but I enjoyed the challenge. I've taken part in a good few half marathons, and I've ran a few races over 25K. I have never run a marathon, and this will be my first. I had trained for a marathon before in Kansas, but it wasn't meant to be.

How has your preparation been for the marathon? Have you run other races, or shorter races? Have you had injuries?

The training has been different. In Florida, all training would start at 5:30am as the heat would be too much. Now that I'm back home, we mainly do evening and night time sessions. When I got back first, I had a few injuries which held me back, such as my Achilles, my calf, it really seemed like it was one thing after another. I think my body has finally adapted to that. It was a struggle starting back into it, as I wasn't able to get beyond 5 to 8 miles. I really feel like I need to be getting to 10 miles, anything less isn't really enough for me.

The other aspect is I don't just run, I also go to the gym a few times a week which helps with strength and conditioning. I do circuits and thi I've also tried yoga and pilates, both are great with core strength. I have to say though, there could be ladies in the pilates class in the 70s who are way more flexible and better than I am. It goes to show that keeping fit and exercising really has its benefits.

What is your goal time for the Dublin marathon?

I would say I'm pretty competitive, but I also know this is my first marathon. We're all just trying to achieve something. So on race day, I'm going to be focused but also happy knowing what I've done in training. My goal is to get as close to 3:30 as possible. I'm going to try stick with the pacers and see how I get on.

What would your advice be to runners heading into the marathon?

Take your time, and settle in to it. The work has been done. Focus on your own race, and don't get caught up in what people around you are doing. Don’t worry about the clock, enjoy the experience

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