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Dublin: 1 °C Sunday 18 March, 2018

Five big targets to give yourself this year

Great journeys in fitness could start with something simple like joining a club or even just going to a game.

DON’T LET 2015 just come and go because before you know it it’ll be winter and you’ll be hearing this from us all over again.

Make this year the year you’re going to get pro-active about fitness and sport. To help, we’ve compiled a short list of things that might just interest you.

Remember, you’re never too old to try something new, and there’s always space on the bandwagon…

1. Run a marathon…or maybe a half

These are NOT as hard as they sound. Granted, a marathon is going to take months of preparation but a half marathon is far more manageable. Belfast, Cork and Dublin host Marathons on the May, June and October Bank holiday weekends, respectively, and all are very possible if you start training NOW. Don’t put it off another year.

Cian Healy during his fitness training Cian Healy has his own goals, but he won't be allowed do three of the above. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

2. Do a triathlon

Ireland’s fastest growing sport must have some merits to it if so many people are trying it out. There are more leisure runners, cyclists and swimmers working out than ever before so why not make 2015 the year where you commit to your first triathlon?

The craic is mighty at these things and the sense of satisfaction you’ll get after completing it will make all the suffering and sacrifices worthwhile. You don’t need a €4,000 carbon fibre time machine or a €500 wetsuit. (You can buy them afterwards if you enjoy your first one!)

3. Climb a very big mountain

The country is blessed to have so many superb hikes and trails and mountains that can all be conquered in one day. Obviously, Carrauntoohill in County Kerry is the highest peak, but it’s not the most demanding of ascents.

Giovanni Trapattoni on Croagh Patrick You're not gonna let Trap beat you, are you? Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Slieve Donard (Co. Down), Luqnaquila (Co. Wicklow), Mount Brandon (Co. Kerry) are others that afford stunning views. It’s Ireland, so you can get just about anywhere from anywhere in less than half a day. Just make sure you’re careful up there and do a bit of research on the terrain and bring the right equipment.

4. Join a sports team

Make friends, get in shape and have fun. Joining a new team or taking up a new sport opens up a world of possibilities. If you’ve just moved to a new job or a new city for college, you could do a lot worse than taking up something new. If you hate it, you can always leave.

5. Attend a major sports event

Pats' players line up ahead of the game as flare are let off in the crowd St Pat's steadying themselves before the FAI Cup final. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

2015 isn’t an Olympic year, nor is it a World Cup or European Championships year. But there’s the Six Nations in February and March, Cheltenham in March, The Irish Open at Royal County Down should be a cracker this year, Wimbledon is mighty craic (believe it or not) and the Rugby World Cup is on across the water – surely a bandwagon or two to jump on and get inspired by.

-Originally published at 3pm

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