Loop of the Land

brought to you by
Make-A-Wish, Focus on Fitness, and SPAR. 

I am delighted and very excited to announce that Focus on Fitness has come together with SPAR to raise some much-needed funds for Make-A-Wish Ireland. 

Myself and 2 other Focus on Fitness athletes, Jim and Brian, are going to cycle 2,300km, around the coast of Ireland in just 11 days. This is no easy feat, especially with a total of 17,000 meters ascent.

This challenging route will involve cycling 200km, with an average of 1,800 meters of elevation per day. This cycle will be self-sufficient, with each person carrying all of their gear and equipment on the bike.

The cycle starts from Waterford City on August 4th and heads towards Cork along the Copper Coast. From here we will make our way up the Wild Atlantic way to Donegal, and back down the east coast, finishing back in Waterford City. 

We would really appreciate your support of this cycle for Make-A-Wish.

All donations can be made through Make-A-Wish.

Who is coming on the trip?

Martin Kirwan

I have wanted to do this cycle for a long time, but never found the right time to do it. With a lot of sporting events being cancelled, I feel now is the ideal time to undertake the challenge.

With charity’s struggling to organise their usual fundraising events, this is a perfect opportunity to organise the cycle, while helping Make-A-Wish raise money for families in need. 

Jim O’Brien

With races and training severely disrupted due to the pandemic, it was time to put things into perspective. What’s it all about? It didn’t take long to realise that we don’t have as much control over our daily lives as we had previously thought. With that in mind, a conversation turned into an idea which then turned into a plan.

Ideas are always there and plans are always subject to change. Martin Kirwan had the idea and somehow I talked myself into the plan. Between us, we also decided to try and help some less fortunate family’s along the way by raising some funds for the MAKE A WISH charity. As a SPAR retailer myself I was made more aware of this particular charity as it is the designated SPAR charity of the year. 2300km around the coastline of Ireland in 12ish days.

A real challenge is one when you’re not sure if you’ll succeed but all the more satisfying when you do.

Brian Jacob

Hi, I’m Brian Jacob. Since I started training with Martin (Focus On Fitness) in 2012 I’ve done a lot of long-distance races and events. This adventure is definitely up there with the craziest but hopefully will be one of the most enjoyable. With most races cancelled this year, I looked at it as an opportunity to try to take on some events that I have been wanting to do for a few years.

I think it is perfect timing and a very unique way of getting to see the country. I’m really looking forward to the challenge and think it is a great way to raise funds for Make a Wish who do such important work in our community. 

Our Route

Below is the planned route over the 11 days. This may change depending on what the Irish weather has in store for us. We will keep you updated on our plans as we go along through Facebook and Instagram, so be sure to keep an eye out.

We would love to see some new and old faces along the way, so if anyone would like to join us on different stages of the route, just let me know!

Day 1

Tuesday August 4th

Waterford to Clonakilty

190km with 1,500 ascent

Day 2

Wednesday August 5th

Clonakilty to Kenmare

190km with 1,700m ascent

Day 3

Thursday August 4th

Kenmare to Tralee via Dingle

217km with 1,885m ascent

Day 4

Friday August 7th

Tralee to Kinvarra

207km with 1,440m ascent

Day 5

Saturday August 8th

Kinvarra to Leenaun

190km with 1,220m ascent

Day 6

Sunday August 9th

Leenaun to Ballina

228km with 1,455m ascent

Day 7

Monday August 10th

Ballina to Dungloe

211km with 1,563m ascent

Day 8

Tuesday August 11th

Dungloe to Carndonagh

218km with 1,943m ascent

Day 9

Wednesday August 12th

Carndonagh to Carrickfergus

225km with 1,812m ascent

Day 10

Thursday August 13th

Carrickfergus to Dundalk

182km with 947m ascent

Day 11

Friday August 14th

Dundalk to Blackwater

242km with 1,882m ascent

Day 12

Saturday August 15th

Blackwater to Waterford

121km with 892m ascent

We would really appreciate your support of this cycle for Make-A-Wish. All donations can be made through Make-A-Wish.

Get in touch

Need to find anything out?

Click here

If you are looking to increase your fitness levels and reach your goals, Martin is the man for you.

David Connolly

The best thing about working with Martin is that he clearly remembers what it was like to start from scratch and because of this he understands what you are going through and is there to support you through it all.

Brian Jacob

I know without a doubt that I would not have achieved a fraction of what I have without Martin’s support and guidance.

Katie Ryan

I have been told at the track that we run so well together it appears like we are one person running.

Amanda Crotty

I heard of Martin through a friend and cannot speak highly enough of the motivation, encouragement and self-belief he has instilled in me.

Tony Hughes

Through Martins personal involvement in my training, observing and tweaking elements as the year went on, my 2015 season consisted of me consistently knocking 7-8 minutes and sometimes more.

Seamus Wall

Whats special about training with Martin is that regardless of how many people he is training he has a massively individual approach and takes into account each persons level of fitness/performance, goals, challenges and balancing training with everyday life.

Kate Nolan

What Focus on Fitness offers is a ‘unique’ package, tailored to individual needs, combining Experience, Knowledge, Commitment, Time and above all Patience!

Siobhán Kennedy

For anyone looking to improve their Running, Cycling or just to get direction and focus in training I have no doubt that with Martin’s help you can achieve your goal.

Ger Nolan

I would recommend anybody to try focus on fitness it’s changed me for the better in so many ways.

Nigel O'Sullivan

I am absolutely delighted to have completed my first Half Ironman, the biggest event I have ever done!

Siobhán Keating

Transitioning from Indoor Cycling to Road Cycling

This is the first week that we can now cycle any where within our county. Is everyone else as excited as I am?? Over the last 3 months, many of us brought our Spring cycling training back indoors due to Covid-19 restrictions. We worked hard on the turbo trainer to keep our fitness levels up,...

Read More

Keeping Motivated

It was great to speak with Ciara Losty, Sports Psychologist, last week to get some advice on getting through this strange time. With the lockdown being extended to May 5th, here are a few simple, but effective tips to help you through this time. Focus on what you can control With so much going on...

Read More

5 Cycle Routes in the South East of Ireland

Looking for a change of scenery for your weekend rides? Sick of the same routes time and time again? I have compiled 5 cycle routes in the South East of Ireland for you to try.

Read More