In 2006, Barry Minnock began an informal tradition within the Irish Mountain Running Association that was to gain in popularity quickly: an early Spring “Kerry training weekend”. Starting out with a weekend of running in close to mighty Brandon mountain, the event moved to Killarney in the heart of MacGillycuddy’s Reeks and began to feature a regular run up Ireland’s highest mountain Carrauntoohil.
Flash-forward to 2011 and Aoife, Jason and René decided to bring back the event which had been on a hiatus since Barry Minnock decided to take a break from organising it. To ring some small changes, we picked the sea-side village of Kenmare for the training weekend which in the end was attended by more than thirty mountain runners and multi-sport athletes.
We had an extensive programme (all optional) lined up and while a few hardcore souls did everything most cherry-picked their way through four sunny days or setup alternative activities such as rock-climbing, biking and kayaking (as well as the odd sea-side dip) to supplement the main running events. Kenmare and Kerry has a tremendous amount to offer for any outdoor athlete and the joy is further emphasized when doing it as part of a group.
To help inspire you to put together your own holiday, or wet your appetite for “2012 Kerry training weekend”, we will feature a series of blog entries looking back at each of our events. Our basic itinerary looked like this:
- Friday: Good Friday 5 mile race in Killarney
- Saturday: morning jog and “speed workshop” (am) and Carrauntoohil race route mountain run (pm)
- Sunday: morning jog and yoga (am) and Kerry Way long run (Torc Waterfall to Kenmare with detour of Lord Brandon’s Cottage – coffee shop!)
- Monday: Glanageenty Trail run with former mountain running world champion John Lenihan
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