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Jade Hoynes of Killaloe who completed The Long Way In One Day, a 250km triathlon accomplished within 24 hours, in aid of Sejare Adult Respite House in Anacotty and Samaritans branches in Ennis and Limerick. Photograph by John Kelly

Jade glad to give something back through epic triathlon


Killaloe woman keen to highlight support she and her family have received from local organisations

DONATIONS are still being made to local charities after a Killaloe woman completed a gruelling 250km triathlon in one day.
The successful completion of “The Long Way In One Day” by Jade Hoynes (28) has raised €7,341 for the Samaritans and Sejare Adult Respite House.
Her original target was €5,000, so she was thrilled to collect more than €2,300 extra for two charities that are close to her heart.
“I would have been delighted to raise €5,000. The huge support and kind messages I have received really meant a lot to me.
“It was one of the best days of my life. It was a day I will not forget. The support from my family, friends and the charities made the day so much more enjoyable and much easier.”
The regular Ironman challenge is a 180 kilometre cycle, 3.8 kilometre swim, and marathon.
Just to make things even more difficult, Jade decided to increase the gruelling test to take on a four kilometre swim in the Lakeside Hotel pool, a 200 kilometre cycle and a 46 kilometre run.
The Lakeside Hotel opened up their pool early to facilitate the start of her 4km swim at around 6am.
Starting from the Lakeside Leisure Centre, she cycled to Birdhill, Annacotty where Sejare Adult Respite House is located, Birdhill, Portumna, Tuamgraney, Ennis, the location of Clare Samaritans, Newmarket-on-Fergus, Bunratty South to the Limerick Samaritans building.
Her 46km run started from the Limerick Samaritans and took in Childers Road, Castletroy, Annacotty, Birdhill, Balina, Two Mile Gate, Ogonnelloe and Killaloe.
When Ms Hoynes participated in RTÉ’s Iron Mind series with Niall ‘Bressie’ Breslin in 2015, she completed a lot of swimming training, which she really enjoyed after the show ended.
Having applied online to participate in the series, she never expected to be involved in the show.
This television programme explored the link between mental and physical health, with the help of a nutritionist, sports psychologist, presenter Bressie and other health professionals.
She completed a duathalon during the series, which set the seed for taking on a triathlon in the future.
In September 2020, she started swimming again in the Lakeside Hotel leisure until gyms closed. This forced her to start training in Lough Derg, which was a big deal as she has a fear of swimming in dark water.
While Jade had run a marathon a few years ago, she never cycled 100 kilometres before her training commenced.
At the end of February, she started her training for the charity challenge three hours a day, swimming, cycling and running from Monday to Friday, with up to a maximum of seven hours on a long cycle or a few hours running at the weekend.
“Most of my work in the family business is quite physical so that helped with my training. It is a huge commitment. I had to fit in work and there are occasions people want to meet up with me, but I hadn’t the time.
“I really enjoyed training during the good weather. It was great to get out and be in the middle of nature. There were days when it felt effortless.
“During the difficult training days I sent voice messages to my friends and felt so much better afterwards. Talking and having support really helps.
“Completing this challenge was something I really wanted to do. I couldn’t have done it without the support of my family, who were there on the day.
“Seeing members from the local community, the Two Mile Gate swim club and my friends meant so much to me.”
As she reached the end of the 200 kilometre cycle near the Samaritans branch in Limerick, she jokes she couldn’t feel her backside by the end of it, and wasn’t sure if she would be able for the 46 kilometre run.
However, meeting Samaritans volunteers and getting some food gave her a huge lift for the run.
“I was on a high on the day from a mixture of everything. Having my family present on the day meant a lot. When I saw my friends I was emotional.
There was a great reception for me and my support team in Sejare House. I got quite emotional. I was tearing up seeing the staff and clinical nurse, Michael Hunt, who really appreciated what I was doing.
“When I finished, I was delighted to complete it within the 24 hours.
“The swimming was the most enjoyable part of my training. The most important thing was to eat enough calories to fuel my body. If I didn’t, I would just crash.”
Two weeks before the event, the former St Anne’s Community College student had the misfortune to come off her bike during training, which was really difficult because she wasn’t sure if she would be fit enough to actually complete the challenge.
With the help of school friend and physiotherapist, Dan Finnerty, as well as homeopathy and other treatments from her mother, Katherine, she managed to recover.
Born in Luton, she moved to Ogonnelloe with her family in1996 and has resided in Killaloe since 2015 following another move.
She really enjoys working in the family business Palm Free Irish Soap, which was established in 2014. It includes herself, her parents, two sisters and two other employees who work in the firm.
In the spring of 2014, Jade was diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and trichotillomania.
“I struggled with mental health in my early teenage years. It was only after secondary school that I sought help. It was difficult, but I am so glad I got help.”
Having the courage to make a phone call to the Samaritans for help was difficult.
“I wasn’t feeling well at the time and it was a really difficult decision for me to make the call and use their walk-in service at their Limerick branch.
“It was a start for me. The Samaritans helped me a lot. It took me a while to ring a doctor, but calling the Samaritans was the first step for me.
“I didn’t realise how big a step it actually was until I started writing the GoFundMe page. The memories came flooding back, and I couldn’t believe I was at that stage.
“My thinking is completely different now compared to the way it was back then.
“It was difficult for me to look back on, and still is to this day. The Samaritans were there for me. There was no judgement and it was confidential.
“I feel more confident in myself after completing the challenge. I have learned a lot through the training and from the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I still have problems with my anxiety, but I am much better than I was years ago. While I still suffer from trichotillomania, I don’t get as frustrated as I did in the past.”
Sejare House has provided a lot of support to her sister, Jasmin, who was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) when she was 18 years old.
“Jasmin was looked after very well in Sejare House. Jasmin was always very happy, easy going and extremely affectionate when she was younger.
“As she grew older and especially in her later teens, her moods would fluctuate affecting her behaviour patterns. It was a challenge trying to organise a normal daily routine, requiring a lot of planning for basic activities to ensure there was no upsets. If Jasmin was experiencing a crisis, our plans had to be quickly adapted to cope.
“In 2014, Jasmin got a placement in Sejare House, which has a fantastic, very professional nurse-led team on hand and offer a much-needed break for families. It allowed our family to have some semblance of a normal family life, and we will be forever grateful for their support.”
Half of all funds raised will be going to Sejare and the remainder will be split between the Limerick and Ennis branches of the Samaritans.

Her GoFundMe page “The Long Way in One Day” will be left open for a few weeks.

by Dan Danaher

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