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'Those Marty Parties take serious stamina', says Olympics and DWTS star Rob Heffernan



Rob Heffernan

Rob Heffernan

Rob Heffernan

Champion race-walker Rob Heffernan proved he was made of stern stuff after claiming a bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics.

But the 39-year-old admitted that it takes serious stamina to survive the "Marty Parties" after the show every Sunday night.

"The Marty Parties are what's going to kill me. They take so long to recover from," he said.

He joined fellow contestant Maia Dunphy in Copper Face Jack's last week as the gang let their hair down after the first live elimination, which saw Norah Casey getting the boot.

Yet the Cork dad-of-four sees it as part of the show experience.

"You have to unwind because every week is like a new Olympics. You're under the spotlight the whole time, you're under serious pressure," he said.

"At the same time, life is about having fun and then you're back in work again the following Monday and that's what I found fascinating about the experience. You have to have your fun and then it's back to work."

He's currently sharing an apartment with singer Jake Carter in Dublin and said the pair of them are having "great craic".

As well as eating out together in the evenings, they even popped into Temple Bar for a coffee, which ended up with Jake getting involved in an impromptu sing-song.

"He's sound out. He's a great guy to live with and we've become really good friends," he said.

"Everyone's been getting on great.

"We're all experiencing the same thing so it's nice to have people around who understand what you're going through."

However, when asked who he reckons is his biggest competition, with the bookies still favouring Erin McGregor or Anna Geary, he said he's just focusing on his own performance.

DISTRACTED "You can't predict what's going to happen, you can only take it week by week. I just try to do what I can and not get distracted by what other people are doing," he said. "I've always been like that. When competing, I would never focus on the Russian or the Chinese, I would just focus on my own performance."