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12th Mar 2014 Meets Marian Heffernan To Talk About Her Newborn Daughter and Missing The Sport

We sat down with the former athlete to talk about her career and motherhood.

Rebecca McKnight

We’re used to seeing her on the running track but recently Marian Heffernan sat down with us for a chat about being an An Post Cycle Series ambassador and what she’s got planned for the year ahead.

Here’s what she had to say about…

The cycle series

It’s in operation for the last six years. The sports council and An Post merged together and brought this initiative around the country so there’s going to be cycling from the 4th May to the 4th September. The first one is in Sligo and the last one is in Cork.

Her new hobby

Cycling has always been a big part of my training schedule. I cycle along with Rob for all his training and he does over 160km a week so I’d have to cycle along with him to give him drinks and video analysis. I got pregnant last year so I took to the bike because I wasn’t able to run and just caught the bug and it’s been going since. I’ve really been enjoying it.

Getting the family involved

It’s fantastic and cycling is just another option for people. It’s an opportunity for them to utilize the coastlines, walkways and cycle paths around the country and it’s bringing awareness. We’re going to use it as a family event so when Rob is finished his competing in August, the whole family is going to get together and do the cycle in Cork. I’m looking forward to that.

Keeping fit

I’m enjoying finding different ways of keeping fit. Regan is only four weeks old so I went back two weeks ago to walking and finding my feet. I’m not just going to go back to what I know. I’ve really taken to the cycling so I think I’ll probably just throw in a couple of runs here and there but I can’t imagine going back and competing at the level I was at. I think I’ll just involve the kids, we have three kids, so whatever I do I’ll have to bring the kids in tow.

Her newborn daughter

I think she has been a lot easier than Cathal was and, because I’m not wanting to get back and compete, I’m enjoying it a lot more because I’m more relaxed and she’s an absolute dote. It has been a great four weeks.

Missing the sport

I think, throughout my pregnancy, I never missed competing because I think people underestimate the work you actually have to put in. I know if I raced now, I’d be last. I think what I did miss was pushing myself at something and you’re obviously restricted when you are pregnant but I genuinely felt like cycling. I did spinning throughout my pregnancy because I was able to get my heart rate up and get a bit of a sweat on. I won’t lie, I got a little bit of that competitive side back again.

What comes next

I’m going to take it week by week. I’m kind of jumping from one thing to another but Rob has a competition in Switzerland in March and then he’s going to altitude for a month at the end of March so I’m just going to play it by ear and put in my own training here and there. The main focus is Rob this year.


The 2014 An Post Cycle Series was launched by this year’s ambassador’s comedian PJ Gallagher, former Kerry football star Paul Galvin, athlete Marian Heffernan and singer Bressie. Five events will be held across the country, monthly between May and September, starting with the An Post Tour of Sligo on Sunday 4th May. Visit the website here for more information on how to sign up.