Running Matters One:2:One with Enda Seery
Photo shows, Enda Seery racing in the Clonard four-mile in 2018.
This week I’m interviewing a local man, who is also a relatively new addition to the running scene in Mullingar.
Enda Seery began running in 2016, to help his recovery from years of depression. As you’re about to read in honest detail, Enda has not only overcome his demons, but flourished and he has become a much more content and rounded person, as well as a very decent middle distance club runner, who continues to improve.
With age on his side, Enda intends on lowering some of his race times, starting overseas this October and then it’s back to Mullingar, to help with the organisation of a “small” music event happening in our town, next August! You could say, Enda is a man of many talents.
Name: Enda Seery
When did you start running and what motivated you take it up?
I started running properly in 2015. I had some running experience as a youngster in the Community Games and a few other local events. I played Gaelic football for the St Joseph’s club in Streamstown and I did that into my late 20s. I also played a bit of soccer too.
Towards the end of 2014 though, my mental health had a reached a low ebb. I had been suffering with depression for many years and I knew I needed proper help. I had various forms of therapy and during group therapy sessions, I set a goal of running a half marathon. I had always been fairly athletic, but I decided to try and make running a more consistent form of therapy and, of course, exercise for me.
I then ran the Galway Bay Half Marathon in October 2015 and I haven’t looked back since. I have grown so much as a person since then and running has become a hugely positive part of my life.
What is your favourite and least favourite type of training and your favourite race distance:?
I have to say that I enjoy speed interval sessions especially with Mullingar Harriers on Wednesday nights. I don’t get to the Wednesday night sessions as much as I would like to because of my other music commitments (Enda is a self-employed music teacher and a musician), but the Harriers are a such a great club and they provide great support and advice.
I joined the Mullingar Harriers in 2016, before I attempted my first Dublin Marathon. I find the tempo runs tough, but I know they are important to get your race pace right! I enjoy the five-mile race distance the most. I love the Raheny 5 mile race in Dublin, held at the end of January each year. It seems to suit me, as it’s a little shorter than the 10k distance. My 10k time probably should be quicker, because I’ve ran some decent five-mile times, especially in Raheny.
What running achievements are you most proud of and why?
Well, I think my first attempt at the Dublin Marathon in 2016 was a memorable day for me. It gave me great confidence and the determination to believe in myself. I feel that I’m a more rounded person now. I can be competitive with myself, but I try to look at the bigger picture too. I was also delighted to go sub 40 minutes for the 10k a few years ago. I had been trying to do that for a while.
List your current PBs for the following distances:
5k: 18.29 (Pat Finnerty 5k, 2018)
6k: 22.45 (Navan, 2018)
5 mile: 31.06 (Raheny, 2018)
10k: 39.50 (Dunboyne, 2019)
10 mile: 67.41 (Trim, 2018)
Half marathon: 1 hour 30 minutes 57 seconds (Mullingar, 2018)
Full marathon: 3 hours 42 minutes (Dublin, 2017).
What are your running goals for the next 12 months?
My short-term goal is training for my first marathon abroad, in Frankfurt, Germany, which is in coming up in October. I want to run a sub 3 hours 30 minutes and I think it’s achievable. I’m going to move back to more shorter race distances though, after Frankfurt.
I’m on the organising committee for the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil in Mullingar next year and it’s going to be a crazy busy, but enjoyable year for me. Mullingar is going to be buzzing from August 2 to 9, 2020. Eventually, I’d love to have a crack at the New York Marathon sometime in the future too, when the fleadh juggernaut ends!
What advice would you give to anyone who is looking to take up running?
You’ll never regret any run, that’s for sure. Join a club like Mullingar Harriers. You’ll meet fantastic people and there are always people of your own ability to engage with. Try to vary the surfaces that you run on if you can. Roads can be hard on the knees! Finally, don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s a joy to be able to run at all. Enjoy it!
What are your lifetime goals and PBs for the following distances (where applicable): 1 mile, 5k, 10k, 10 mile, half marathon, full marathon.
5k: Sub 18; 10k: Sub 39; 10 mile: 65 minutes; Half Marathon: 1 hour 25 minutes; Full Marathon: 3 hours 10 minutes.
Favourite post-race meal?
A nice pizza usually does the trick for me, especially after long distance races. For shorter races, I’ll eat pretty much whatever is on offer!