Marathon man applauded into Market Square
It's hard for your average person to comprehend what it feels like to cross the finish line on your 15th marathon in 15 days. Similarly, it's hard to comprehend what it must feel like knowing that you have another nine to come over the next nine days.
That was exactly the situation for marathon man Shane Finn as he crossed the finish line to rapturous applause at Market Square on Thursday afternoon.
The Kerry native has taken it upon himself to run a total of 24 marathons in 24 days in the hopes of raising €100,000 for Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland (SBHI), and 15 days in, he's on track with over €64,000 raised so far.
24 year-old Shane started out his day just outside Arklow and ran through Ferns and Camolin before hitting Enniscorthy where he was greeted by grateful members of the local SBHI branch and supporting members of the public.
'My legs are getting a bit sore, but they're still there,' Shane laughed, remarkably not that out of breath having just crossed the finish line. 'As much as it hurts, my heart still controls my head and then my head controls my legs. I said it on Day 7 and it got me through Day 15 as well!"
It's a gruelling routine for Shane. After his daily marathon, he works on repairing his body and getting set for the next day's task.
'I have an ice bath every night,' he said. 'Then I'd eat two or three dinners to load up on carbs. I don't eat meat at all during events like this.'
Shane first started out raising money for SBHI in 2007, running a marathon and he progressed to running 12 marathons in 12 days for the organisation three years ago. With this being number 15 though, he's now in unchartered territory.
'I suppose I'm into the unknown at this stage,' he said. 'It's all about how my body adapts, but I feel good so far. Tomorrow (Friday) I'm going for Carlow and Kilkenny. A good friend of mine Niamh is from Kilkenny and is married to the hurler TJ Reid, so it will be good to hook up with them tomorrow night and keep going.'
District Manager Liz Hore welcomed Shane to Enniscorthy and said that it was a 'privelege' for him to be finishing his 15th marathon in the town. She then invited District Chairman Keith Doyle to say a few words.
'Shane is running a total of 625.5 miles to achieve his goal and we wish him the very best,' he said. 'I would urge everyone who comes across him on the journey to be as generous as they can or to donate by text or online."
National Chairman of SBHI Peter Landy thanked everyone in Enniscorthy for coming out to support Shane and commended Wexford County Council on its efforts in areas such as being the first local authority to provide beach wheelchairs.
Bernie Flood of the local branch thanked Shane, saying: 'He's a tremendous man and we won't see another like him.'
Following all the excitement, it was back to The Courtyard in Ferns for a special barbecue and evening of fun to celebrate Shane's progress thus far and send him on his way again for the next round of this major test of endurance.
To donate to Shane's effort, text GIVE to 50300 to donate €4. Alternatively, you can donate at www.24marathons24days.ie where you can also track his progress.