Archive for December, 2023

Chevin Chase 2023

Saturday, December 30th, 2023 | Sport

The Chevin Chase has been run on Boxing Day for decades. But I only took part for the first time last year. This week, I was back again,along with 23 other members of Hyde Park Harriers for a muddy, hilly run around the chevin.

The cameras missed me in the wood but here I am looking exhausted having just made it to the top of surprise view.

And, of course, it wouldn’t be the Chevin Chase without the traditional water dip.

My finish time was:


Around three minutes slower than last year. Not bad given I’m now 10% heavier. Lovely to see everyon and a big thank you to all of the volunteers who made the event happen.

The Last Tram

Monday, December 25th, 2023 | Books

My new novel is out!

I did NaNoWriMo for a second time this year and the result was an urban fantasy adventure set on the Dublin Luas. They say everyone has one great novel in them. This is not mine. But it is 30% bigger than my previous one thanks to increased line spacing.

It’s only available from Amazon. Why not nag your local Waterstones about stocking my books?

Venla’s winter concert

Thursday, December 21st, 2023 | Family & Parenting

Yesterday we went to Venla’s winter concert. Her class sang the sharing song with some dance moves thrown in. Well done, Venla!

I didn’t make a lot her events at daycare like sport days and father’s day breakfasts. I did make one and the food was not spectular. And her graduation, of course. But I felt I missed a lot of it because I was so busy working on the business so that, ironically, I would have time to do that kind of stuff. Now the business is successful and I do have time to do this stuff. And it feels great!

Productivity Coaching course

Wednesday, December 20th, 2023 | News

Four years ago, I launched my Feel-good Productivity course. Today, I’m pleased to announce a major revision to the course with updated lessons, additional information for coaches who want to help clients, and a new module on teams and workplaces.

It is also now available via Holbeck College and you can preview it here.

TES EduProgram

Tuesday, December 19th, 2023 | Business & Marketing

Trinity Entrepreneurial Society is currently hosting a series of talks on different aspects of launching a business such as ideation, pitching and emerging technology.

The organisation has been so-so. The first event was announced the day before and placed on Halloween when many of us had plans. Another two of the events were cancelled at short notice. And there was meant to be a social aspect to it but this did not happen, I assume due to low numbers. That itself was frustrating because you hav to apply to to the programme and there is an attendance policy, but that is all false scarcity.

With that moan out of the way, though, the events that did run were great. The speakers were from a range of company sizes with good knowledge and I got to meet Alison Darcy, the founder of Woebot!

Tymon parkrun

Monday, December 18th, 2023 | Sport

I took an easy joy around Tymon for parkrun this weekend as I was feeling under the weather. It is nice enough: two laps and a gentle slope but no serious hills. The park does run right next to the M50, though, which does make it noisy. I had a lovely time, though, and was glad I got out of bed.

It’s OK to Be Angry About Capitalism

Sunday, December 17th, 2023 | Books

It’s OK to Be Angry About Capitalism is a book by Bernie Sanders. He sets out what is wrong with capitalism and what to do about it.

It’s a good but highly depressing read. Sanders sets out a lot of important problems in detail and he does offer some solutions (universal healthcare, trade unions, independent media, etc). But what there isn’t is a roadmap for how to get there. Still, if you get the audiobook, it is read by Bernie himself.

Reindeer Run

Monday, December 11th, 2023 | Sport

The Reindeer Run is an annual 3km run around campus. I was there so I think I’m in this photo somewhere.

Darndale parkrun

Sunday, December 10th, 2023 | Sport

I had mixed feelings about heading over to parkrun yesterday. I was out late (midnight) with the dad’s night out from Venla’s school and had been drinking (caffeine). So, my stomach was not feeling chipper Saturday morning. But I did want to try and run a quick parkrun so I put my fast shoes on.

When I got to the park, I did a warm-up lap. The paths were flooded and I tried to dodge around them but the grass was a marsh so I gave up on that plan. It was straight through them from then on. But ankle deep freezing cold water was not the start to my warm-up I imagined 😂.

It is a small parkrun and 14 of us lined up on the start line. The course takes in three laps of the park and each loop included 8-10 large puddles you had to run through. There was also a lot of mud on the corners so I had to take it easy there. I was in fourth on the first lap, but then the front runners went the wrong way and only the fifth runner knew which way to go, so it was the infamous peco incident all over again.

As well as the puddles and the mud, there was a massive headwind on the back half of the course. The wind was up to about 50 kph when I checked it after the run and it felt like it. It was so hard to keep going at any pace that I almost dropped down to a walk, and I was working at around 190 bpm at this point.

I crossed the finish line in 4th overall. This is an improvement on my previous overall best placement when I came 6th in a field of 79 at Fairview parkrun. I ran that in 22:32. Today, I managed:


That’s only about 20 seconds faster than I ran Father Collins parkrun despite pushing hard this week and using my super shoes, so that was disappointing.

There are lots of mitigating factors: I got there late and didn’t get a full warm-up, I had to slow down for the mud, the wind, I went the wrong way. With all of that gone, I would definitely be sub-23 and hopefully that will improve now I’ve added more structure into my training.

A big thank you to all of the volunteers who showed up despite the grim conditions.

None of This Is True

Wednesday, December 6th, 2023 | Books

None of This Is True i a novel by Lisa Jewell.

It was recommended to me by an algorithm, I think, based on reading a few murder mysteries. It’s more of a psychological thriller and I started it a month or two ago but had to put it down because the material: grooming, domestic abuse, incest, eating disorders and more, was just too depressing when I wasn’t feeling great.

I’ve finished the book off now and it’s a gripping read. But it doesn’t have a happy ending so the sadness hangs around, too.