Off the Couch and On To the Road for 3K Graduates

An Riocht AC Couch-to-3K Road Race 5-8-2016
An Riocht AC Manager, Kate McSweeney (left) with: James O’Leary, Mike Brosnan and Maggie O’Sullivan launching the September 5K series of road races at the club on Friday evening. ©Photograph: John Reidy

Just over two months ago the people at An Ríocht AC launched a Couch-to-3K initiative to entice those to whom the more established 5K might look like a marathon undertaking.

The idea was to get people away from the couch for the summer and it attracted a band of participants who are now looking to progressing to that once fearful 5K distance.

Training began for the new recruits on June 14th and it culminated with a ceremonial 3K road run around Castleisland at 7pm on Friday evening.

“This summer we’re going to work towards running a 3K before we move on to tackle the 5K distance. The 3K focus will be a lot more appealing and more achievable for many,” manager Kate McSweeney explained at the launch back in June.

First Timers

While there were some experienced runners at the 3K starting line for this run, the majority were the first timers who had been working towards this event for the past couple of months.

The sense of exhilaration on finishing for many was almost worth going around again.

“You might be suffering out on the road but the minute you get your leg over that finishing line there is a great feeling of achievement,” said one of the delighted finishers.

The experienced runners and club volunteers were also a great help to Friday evening’s first-timers. Maurice O’Connor, Jer Tangney and co. encouraged them every step of the way.

Post Event Buffet

And they were treated to a fantastic, post event buffet and gathering in the club’s dining area – which was prepared with great creativity and thought by Bernadette Fitzgerald and Chris Ferris.

“Nice touch,” – they said. “Where would you get it,” – they asked. “We’ll be back,” – they pledged.

Then, right on cue, Kate McSweeney launched a short series of 3K to 5K which is aimed at encouraging the first timers to take another big step.

They have been provided with a five-week training schedule to help them up those steps. And with the Rio Olympics and its magic as a backdrop – what more inspiration could a body want.

Successive Weeks

The three-pronged, 3K to 5K series of races / fun runs will be held on successive weeks in September on: Wednesday 7th; Wednesday 14th and Wednesday 21st.

And, for the regular 5Kers, their autumn / winter / Couch-2-5K training schedule and series of road races / fun runs will be announced shortly – but they’re welcome to join in whatever is going on in the meantime.  For more details call An Ríocht AC on: 066 71 42199 or email:

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