Monday 19 November 2018

Look who's running: The well-known faces running the 2017 Vhi Women's Mini Marathon

Are you running this year’s Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon? If so, you’re in good company!

A host of familiar faces have signed up to challenge themselves at this year’s event, from household on-screen names to sports stars.

Here are 7 well-known faces that you might spot at the start or finish line at this year’s event on June 5th:

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Amanda Byram, Vhi Support Team

1.  “It’s empowering” - Amanda Byram

TV presenter, model and health advocate Amanda Byram is known for being super-fit, but surprisingly has never run a 10k before.  Fresh from her role as presenter of RTÉ’s Dancing with the Stars she’s now part of Vhi’s Support Team as an event ambassador for 2017.  “This is quite new for me.  When you see people giving their time, energy and devotion to raising money for amazing charities in this event – it really doesn’t get better than that”.  Amanda is running with her mother Betty and a group of friends to support Down Syndrome Ireland (DSI).

Áine O'Gorman (left) with teammate Stephanie Roche

2.  International soccer star Áine O'Gorman - “stay active”

Irish international soccer player Áine O’Gorman, who has 94 caps for Ireland wants to support families affected by cancer in Ireland.  She has been announced as Purple House Cancer Support’s Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon Ambassador for 2017.  Áine’s amazing sporting achievements have seen her win FAI U14, U16, U18 and Senior Cup medals and also the Women’s National League Cup.  Having played for a variety of clubs she moved to UCD Waves in 2014, becoming captain. “As a young, female sports player, I understand the need for everyone to stay active, keep fit and lead a healthy lifestyle”

Ann Skelly, rising star on Red Rock

3. TV3’s Red Rock rising star Ann Skelly 

Rising star, Ann Skelly, who plays Rachel Reid in TV3’s Red Rock is an ambassador for the Cystic Fibrosis One in 1,000 campaign.  She’s running along with fellow actor Róisín O’Donovan, who plays her on-screen sister Niamh Reid in the soap which has now been sold internationally reaching huge audiences. "We really need to redouble our efforts to do everything that we can to combat this disease which can have such a devastating impact on so many lives. For me, the great thing about the mini-marathon is that you can walk, jog or, if you really insist, run all the way to the finish line. So, if even a non-gym fanatic like me can do it, then surely you can too!"

Evanne Ní Chuilinn, RTÉ sports reporter

4.  Join RTÉ’s Evanne Ní Chuilinn

RTÉ sports reporter Evanne Ní Chuilinn is another well known personality that will be putting on her runners for the 2017 Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon.  She has also joined the Red Rock actors and wants to raise funds for Cystic Fibrosis services in Ireland as part of the One in 1,000 campaign.  Evanne’s aim is to really make a difference and help raise €120,000 to contribute towards funding a range of services to help improve the quality of life for people with CF. This included dedicated CF staff at cystic fibrosis units in hospitals, patient support grants and research. 

Louise Heraghty, Vhi Fitness Support

5. Help to prepare with Louise Heraghty

Louise Heraghty juggles many professions as a weather presenter for RTÉ, combined with radio presenting and also as a personal trainer and fitness expert.  She’s especially committed to helping pregnant and post-pregnant women with their fitness.  She has teamed up with Vhi and is part of their Support Team once again this year.  She provides training programmes and advice to help runners and walkers to prepare for their personal best on race day whether they are beginners or improvers.

Aisling O’Loughlin, TV presenter, journalist and mum

6.  Aisling O'Loughlin - “joy and hope”

TV presenter, journalist and mum Aisling O’Loughlin is best known for her work on TV3’s Xpose.  She’s recently branched out to move on and launch her own website and has now come on board to lead Team Barretstown in this year’s Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon.  On her decision to run this year, she points out that in addition to helping to raise valuable funds for Therapeutic Recreation programmes for children with serious illnesses, “there’s always a surge of joy and hope when you step out with 40,000 women to show solidarity with those in need in this country.  It’s a mega powerful experience, no matter what your level of fitness is and extremely emotional”.

Today FM radio presenter Alison Curtis

7. Alison Curtis – “let’s do this!”

Last year when Today FM radio presenter Alison Curtis took part in the Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon it was the first time she had regularly run since her daughter was born in 2011, and she’s is back running again this year:  “As well as seeing the hundreds of charities being represented on the day, it was emotional, more so than I was prepared for. The energy at the start of the race was incredible, the chats I had along the way with so many women, who I had never met, but became instant companions – it was wonderful. And of course the feeling of almost disbelief after crossing the finishing line. It was an amazing day from start to finish!”

There is still plenty of time to train, whether you decide to walk or run.  For motivation, the Vhi Support Team offers advice with training plans, motivation tips and all-important nutrition.

Running together is better so why not team up with a running buddy to help you motivate yourself and maximise your chances to train in the lead-up to the event. 

For further information on the 2017 Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon visit or follow on Facebook and Twitter.

Sponsored by: Vhi Mini Marathon

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