With all the travelling and general disruption my running has been non-existent this week. This morning, my last day in Dublin, I was disinclined once again to lace up my runners. Eventually I told myself that I’d just trot down to Ringsend to deliver something, and after that I’d see. So without firing up the Garmin and iPod I set off for my last Dublin run on yet another gorgeous morning.

At Ringsend I felt good and decided to press on for a bit. And rather than follow my familiar route along Sandymount Strand I took a dogleg inland and picked up Tritonville Road and Merrion Road. Busy roads usually but nice and peaceful early-ish on a Sunday. The district of Merrion is typical D4 country – nice big properties within a 20-30 minute walk of Dublin city centre. And a pleasant diversion it was until I eventually picked up the coast again at the level crossing between Sydney Parade and Booterstown. Once at that point I decided to continue on to the far end of Blackrock Park.

This was turning in to one of those rare, enjoyable runs where the legs and body feel under no stress and the mind can drift away. This morning I found myself, inevitably, thinking about the days and weeks to come in my new business venture. I am taking over ownership of a gym – part of a franchise, in Waterford. This represents a considered risk for me and, though I fully expect to make a success of it, the downside of the risk is pretty scary. Especially in the first, vital few weeks I will be depending on my running to act as a de-stressor.

Touching the barrier at the station end of Blackrock Park I turned for home and this time turned onto the sand for the last time. Up along the strand, through Sean Moore Park, along Pigeon House Road, over the East Link. Picking my heels up along the north quay I actually felt like a proper runner for the first time in a while. Over the Sean O’Casey footbridge and home in 1:53 for, let’s say, 10 miles. A great last memory of my running in Dublin.

So I’m packed, the hire car sits outside waiting to go. Tomorrow morning I hit the road for Waterford. I’ll catch up with this blog once I’m all wired up down the country. Up the Deise!