On The Run-16 in 12

My Charity Run For Aware

16 Marathons in 12 Days

In the last 2 weeks in October 2012 I will be taking on the challenge of my life... a solo run through Ireland. I will be completing a half marathon-13.1 miles- in every county in Ireland in just 12 grueling days. All of this I am doing for Aware Charity. They work with people who are suffering problems with depression and support their families... "Aware's mission is to create a society where people with depression and their families are understood and supported, are free from stigma and have access to a broad range of appropriate therapies to enable them to reach their full potential.

This is something that is close to me as until now I have never share this with many but after the winding up of my Plastering business in 2008 I suffered with depression, debts where high and income was non-existent. I really got stuck in a rut for well over a year. My motivation and positivity was at an all time low, talking about it wasn't an option but burying my head in the sand was, or so I thought! 
Letters, bills and phone calls where being ignored and even where I did manage to get a days work somewhere doing odd jobs it took a lot to get me out the door. To everyone on the outside world I was hunky-dory... the usual craic and same ol' Paul, but not on the inside. 
A long story cut short... Through opening up and getting support from Ciara and a few family members, and with me starting my kitchen garden it gave me a whole new lease of life. Wanting to do something, getting out into the garden and watching everything grow was something that made me want to progress and do more. I found myself coming up with new ideas, even just about the garden... small baby steps in motivation but even baby steps in the right direction are still 'in the right direction'!
So here I am now, I am on the brink of starting up a new business with through this new found hobby and new skills, so really anything is possible with help, support and being able to open up and change your thinking. In hindsight support from Aware would have helped greatly, just thankfully I wasn't in too much of a dark place and was able to turn things around for myself. I have known and worked with a few people who were depressed, and like that they never showed any signs of it, until they took their own lives. Aware is a wonderful charity that is there to help and support the families of those who are depressed.

So, back to the craziness of this run... I wanted to do something different... something big. I have dabbled with running before, in 2007 I ran the Dublin City marathon in a woeful 5 hours 23 mins after hitting the wall at the 20 mile mark and hobbling the rest. and this past 2 years I have ran some 10k races and completed 2 half marathons. I wouldn't be classified as a runner by any stretch of the imagination but I know that in any of the long distance running I have done, it takes a lot of mental strength. So I guess that I want to prove a point to myself, publicly, that I have what it takes mentally to complete a challenge that will push me to the limits both mentally and physically.

I will be starting my route in Clare on the 18th October, zig-zagging my way up the west/midlands, across the north, down the east, back around the south and finish up in Limerick on the 31st-Halloween. I will run 3 half marathons (3 counties) on 8 of the days and 2 half marathons (2 counties) on 4 of the days, with 2 rest days in between... Official run route will be published in due course.

As you can see I am a big believer in motivational quotes, sometimes when things are tough and times are hard they help me get into a positive mindset. It cant hurt right? 

You can help me through this by donating on My Charity Page... I understand that times are tough for a lot of people but this is exactly why, if you can, you can donate anything you can spare to this challenge. It only takes a few minutes and you will be helping a great charity make a huge difference in someones life. Someone who really needs help whether it be someone with depression of a family member trying to cope with the stress.


  1. Hi Paul, this is inspiring and motivating. I think you are running for a great cause and I wish you the best of luck on your runs. Your recipes and cooking look fantastic. I'm excited to follow your progress,

  2. Hi Jay, Thanks so much for your kind message, I will be updating my progress every day when I start on Oct 18th :)

  3. Hi Paul,
    I just heard you on Breakfast with Hector and went straight to your website. Love it!! Well done on all you've achieved and best of luck with the fundraising. It's a great cause!

  4. Hey Orla,
    Thanks so much for the support... glad you like the blog :)

  5. Hi Paul, I too heard snippets of your conversation with Hector-half-marathon in every County? Did I hear that right? Moved from N. Ireland to Clare..armed with that info was enough to get me to your website. You are AMAZING. very inspirational. I too believe in the power of positve thinking and it is an integral part of my work in Stress Management. Don't know if you've heard this quote form Olympic Champion, Michael Phelps..but it made me think of you:
    'So many people along the way, whatever it is you aspire to do, will tell you it can't be done. But all it takes is imagination. You dream. You plan. You reach. There will be obstacles. There will be doubters. There will be mistakes. But with hard work, with belief, with confidence and trust in yourself and those around you,THERE ARE NO LIMITS.'
    Best Wishes, Fiona(county Tyrone)

  6. Hey Fiona,
    Thanks for getting in touch!! Thanks so much, haven't heard that quote before but I really like it.. positive thinking is the key alright, gotta keep a strong mind :)

    Paul :)


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