ONE of Ireland's foremost endurance runners, Catherina McKiernan, held a Chi Running Workshop in Blackrock on Saturday for eleven lucky local runners.
World Cross Country Championship medalist in 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1995, McKiernan also won the European Cross Country championship gold in 1994. She took part in two Olympic Games, in Barcelona in 1992 and Atlanta in 1996, before switching her focus to marathon running, with the fastest debut marathon in history in Berlin in 1997 in a time of 2:23:45, a new Irish record. She won the London marathon in 1998 and then broke her own Irish record in Amsterdam in 1998 with a winning time of 2:22:23, which still stands.
Unfortunately her career was hampered thereafter by injury, forcing her to withdraw from the Sydney Olympics in 2000, but it was through these injuries that she discovered Chi Running, a technique designed to make running effortless and injury free.
She was so taken with it that she became a ChiRunning Instructor. Lisa Power, Chairman of Blackrock Athletic Club, had witnessed the benefits of this when her husband Carl was ready to quit running due to injury two years ago. She got him a voucher for the ChiRunning workshop for Christmas that year and he has been running very successfully and injury free ever since.
With the growth of Blackrock AC's Fit4Life group, there was enough interest in the technique for Lisa to organise a workshop to be held locally and Catherina was happy to oblige.
The workshop was a great success, so much so that Lisa is already organising another one for Spring 2014.
Catherina agreed to take time out during the lunch break to meet some of the local athletic hopefuls and have a quick run with them on the Rock Celtic pitch.
Niall Carroll kindly came along to get some great photos of the event. Catherina made time for everyone and all who came to meet her found her very modest and down to earth.
She stayed on well beyond the allocated time to sign autographs and chat to the assembled athletes about their ambitions and successes to date.
Blackrock AC is delighted with the success of the event and extends its thanks to everyone who made this very important workshop possible.