20 Questions with Catherina McKiernan

20 questions will be a weekly post with a host of fantastic Irish and International Running Stars…

First up is Catherina McKiernan: Catherina is one of Ireland’s most celebrated running stars, she is a European Gold & World Cross Country Silver Medalist and has won the London and Berlin Marathons –  she is also the current Irish female marathon record holder.

Check out her answers below!

Catherina McKiernan, Terenure 5 Mile, Irish Running, Run,

  1. Who was your inspiration in running growing up? No one in particular, to be honest.  I ran from a very young age for the sheer joy and sense of freedom that it gave me.
  1. Favourite Place to Run? I live beside the Phoenix Park and like running there but also like to run around the country roads at home in Cavan when I go home.
  1. What is your greatest achievement, running or otherwise? Difficult to pick one but winning the London marathon has to be up there.  Also winning the European Cross Country Championship and 4 silver medals in the World Cross country.  Off the sporting field learning to overcome challenges that life brings.
  1. Do you have any pre-race superstitions? I always wear a holy medal in my shorts pocket.
  1. What’s the one piece of advice you would give to a novice runner? To take advice from people that have competed and have experienced the ups and downs that athletics brings.
  1. How long have you been running? I started training properly under guidance from a coach when I was 17.  Before that I played a lot of different sports
  1. Best running memory? Thankfully many of them and I still have many enjoyable days at races and also watching my children run is fantastic.
  1. Favourite/Least Favourite distance? During my professional career  I liked anything from 10km up to the marathon.  Was not a fan of the shorter distances


  1. What shoes do you run in? Asics Hyperspeed
  1. What’s your next aim? To continue to enjoy running and to stay fit and healthy and run 5 and 10k’s and maybe a half marathon and some of the great races that are organised around the country.
  1. Favourite time of the day to run? To be honest for me anytime is a good time to run. Due to family and work commitments, I do most of my running in the morning time.
  1. Favourite/ Least Favourite thing about been a runner? I love the feeling of well-being, health and fitness that running gives.
  1. If you weren’t a runner, what would you be doing? Something sport-related


  1. Facebook or Twitter? Both
  1. Instagram or Pinterest? Neither
  1. What’s playing on your iPod before a race? N/A
  1. What’s in your Netflix queue? N/A
  1. Last Book you read? Find and Use Your Inner Power by Emmet Fox
  1. If you could be anywhere else in the world right now, where would you be? On a 6 month holiday in a nice warm peaceful place with my two children and all my Family
  1. Words to Live by? Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be.

Thanks, Catherina!

Check back soon for more “20 Questions” with Lauren Fleshman, Molly Huddle, Kim Smith, Thomas Chamney, Deirdre Byrne, Mary Cullen and more!


New to running and looking for something to motivate you to get out and run?

Parkrun is your answer!

Parkrun is a FREE weekly 5k for runners of all standards, it takes place every Saturday at 9.30 am (don’t let the time scare you off!). It’s not a race, but it is a timed run that can be whatever you want it to be really……part of your training plan, an easy run for you and your mates or an activity that the whole family can enjoy.

How Parkrun works?

  • As stated above it’s a Free timed run that takes place every Saturday at 9.30 am.
  • The only thing you have to do is register Here, before your first run. Print off the barcode that you’ll be sent via email & bring it with you to the race. The barcode will be scanned when you finish, and you’ll be sent your position and time by email later in the day.
  • You only have to register with Parkrun once & you can then take part in any race across the country.
  • The run only happens because of the time and dedication of Volunteers and they are always looking for help, so if you want to lend a hand, it couldn’t be easier: just send an email to (your-local-run)helpers@parkrun.com.

Parkrun’s take place all over Ireland – So if you want to participate….Check out where your local run takes place Here

My local Parkrun is in Doorly Park, Cleveragh, Co. Sligo. The inaugural race took place on the 31/01/15 (Check out some pics below: courtesy of the lovely folk at Parkrun Sligo – Check out their Facebook and Web Page)

I have participated in three of the five runs that have taken place in Sligo so far, and I can highly recommend them, the runs are an excellent way to get out and be active without the pressure of a race environment. Plus taking part in Parkruns will help you improve your times and allow you to reach your personal goals……On top of all that, it’s also a great feeling to have your run done and dusted for the day by mid-morning!

Happy Running!

Parkrun, Sligo, Running, Ireland

Parkrun, Sligo, Ireland, Volunteer

Parkrun, Sligo, Parkrun Ireland, Adventure Sligo, Run, Race,

Parkrun, Sligo, Parkrun Ireland, Adventure Sligo, Run, Race,

Parkrun, Sligo, Parkrun Ireland, Adventure Sligo, Run, Race, Dorley Park

Parkrun, Sligo, Parkrun Ireland, Adventure Sligo, Run, Race, Dorley Park