Commonwealth Games marathon runner Virginia Moloney shares her Road to the Games

FIRST STRIDES: Garvoc export Virginia Moloney is sharing her Commonwealth Games journey with The Standard readers.
FIRST STRIDES: Garvoc export Virginia Moloney is sharing her Commonwealth Games journey with The Standard readers.

Garvoc runner VIRGINIA MOLONEY is preparing for her first Commonwealth Games. She will share her journey with The Standard readers with weekly diary entries over the next 12 weeks.

Sleep, train, eat, repeat…and we’ll throw a bit of work in there as well.

Routine is key for an athlete. Personally, I love training of a morning.

I get a real buzz out of training before the day has even begun and I find I can carry that throughout my day.

This week I was back at work and back in routine after school holidays.

Albeit, a new routine, as this year I’ll be working four days per week, with my day off dedicated to extended training and recovery.

Like most working athletes, my week is very standard.

I can tell you exactly where I will be at any given time.

Some people might find this boring. Let’s be honest, it sounds pretty boring, but it’s the people I train with, the people I work with, the conversations we have while running, the places we train and the spectacular sunrises and environments we are exposed to during our week that keeps our routine fresh and diverse.

Routine allows an athlete to relax, to de-stress and focus on getting the best out of ourselves at training.

We try to make as little decisions as possible and staying organised means an athlete can dedicate time to their training and their recovery.

The week starts here: Monday AM – swim and into work by 7.30am; Monday PM – gymstrength and stretch. Tuesday AM – 60-minute run and off to work; Tuesday PM – group speed session with the Vigor Health and Fitness crew at Princes Park in Carlton. Duration: 90 minutes. Wednesday AM – second long run of the week. Duration: two hours. This is followed by a Pilates session with Elizabeth Hewett (Exercise Physiologist and Pilates instructor). Wednesday PM – massage with Liam Delany and, time permitting, a swim and strength work. Thursday AM – swim and off to work; Thursday PM – group speed session with the Vigor Health and Fitness crew on the Collingwood Athletics Track or the trails in Yarra Bend Park. Duration: 90 minutes; Friday AM – easy recovery run 90 minutes; Friday PM – gym/strength and stretch; Saturday AM – session. Duration: 1.5-2 hours; Sunday AM – long run. Duration: 30+km (distance depends on the week and where we are in the marathon campaign).

This week it was 36km followed by a milkshake for the perfect recovery!

Full cream, cow’s milk, preferably Sungold. Thank you very much.

Sunday and Wednesday afternoons are dedicated to planning and cooking the meals for the week.

This ensures that at no time am I left feeling ‘hangry’ or ‘run-gry’.

Every runner has experienced it at some stage during their training or post-race.

That feeling of needing to eat EVERYTHING in sight but there is nothing in the fridge.

Sitting in silence because you’re afraid that if you open your mouth, you may just devour the lovely waitress who has just offered you a milk crate to sit on while you wait 20 minutes for a table…not a situation you want to be in!

My advice, plan for the week ahead and vary your routine by changing up the environment, the meals and surround yourself with people who lift you up.

Ten weeks now until we take the start line on the Gold Coast. The routine will continue, one foot in front of the other, one step at a time.