Nollaig Mahon from Mullingar, who represents Westmeath in this year's Dublin City Marathon in the 2012 Spar Spartan Challenge, completed the Irish Runner 5-mile race in Phoenix Park on Sunday July 1 in a time of 49min.
The next race Nollaig and the 26-strong team of Spartans take on is the Fingal 10km in Swords on July 22 followed by the Frank Duffy 10-mile race in August.
The 26 marathon novices are being guided in their preparation by fitness guru Karl Henry (Operation Transformation) and nutrition expert Paula Mee. They have also been put through a Chi-running workshop by former Olympian and triple marathon winner Catherina McKiernan.
The website http://spartan.spar.ie/ includes motivational, fitness and nutrition videos from the expert panel and will be updated weekly with new content so that anyone can follow the programme.
The Spartan judged to have most fully embraced all aspects of the challenge will win a trip for two to New York to spectate at the New York City marathon on November 4.
SPAR is a partner of the Dublin Race Series and Marathon. Upcoming events:
• Fingal 10k, Swords, Sunday July 22
• Frank Duffy 10 Mile, Phoenix Park, Saturday August 25
• Dublin Half Marathon, Phoenix Park, Saturday September 15
• Dublin Marathon Dublin, Monday October 29