Former soldier makes his Mark in marathon for Pieta House
By Maurice Garvey
FORMER soldier Mark Conlon will need all of his mental strength to undertake a grueling 100 mile run for Pieta House on March 25.
Clondalkin resident Mark (33) has completed over 100 marathons, including a mammoth 20 marathons in 10 weeks for Pieta House last year.
Despite his extensive running background, Mark face a challenge on a different scale in the Vartry 100 mile race, in Wicklow on March 25.
The 24 hour event takes part on a 10 mile loop in the serenic surroundings of Roundwood in Wicklow.
“You can take breaks, it’s up to you when you need a toilet break or change of gear, but it’s not recommended to take too long,” said Mark.
Witnessing the effects of mental health on fellow soldiers in the Irish army and within his own community, Mark was motivated to raise funds for the self-harm and suicide prevention centre.
He continued: “I’ve set up a my charity page and got a few people on board already. The page will be open for a month after the event, which got a good response when The Echo covered it last year.
“I’ll be doing a 50k run in Kildare this weekend and a couple of marathons to prepare for the Ventry 100 but as some experienced people have said to me, you can’t train for it. I’ll just have to keep going.”
Bawnogue native Mark will be equipped with a head torch for the darker parts of the race but funds raised for Pieta House will be his light at the end of the tunnel.