A blog from Dave Flynn: I thought with such a big year ahead and me being abroad for most of it I would start a blog to keep everyone well informed on training ,adventures etc .I recently came back from a 10 week altitude training stint in Mammoth lakes California. This was a life changing experience not just because of how well training went up there and having great team mates but how my running career had gone hill down before that. It was 2014 I got a call and was told I have Mono (Glandular Fever) and would end up being out of action for 11 months. The start was the worst I was still finishing off my degree at the University of Arkansas at the time and along with sleeping 17 hours a day attending classes was mission impossible.Eventually the sickness started to ease off when I changed my diet and stopped all intense exercise soon after that i graduated and became a volounteer assistant coach at Arkansas where I learnt alot about the athletes I coached and Ncaa division 1 system.Chris Bucknam is who i owe it all to getting through those times a great coach and even a greater friend giving me an opportunity to coach in one of the best athletics programs in America. I returned home to Ireland at the end of 2014 cleared to start training full time again but what I was in store for the next few months would have me on the brink of quitting the sport and never coming back. First the lack of support from Athletics Ireland for Irish athletes returning from the state’s after college is ridiculous. You’ve been away for four to five years in a totally different controlled running environment then you arrive home and there’s nothing. I hope this will change for Irish athletes in the future. I was fortunate to be in the best running club in Ireland Clonliffe harriers and looked after whenever possible by club captain Joe Cooper of settling back in.To cut the rest short injuries kicked in along with terrible performances all through 2015 until my return from California .Having no coach for a period of time being in awful shape and having no motivation I toke one last chance of achieving a dream that was slowly slipping away from view.10 weeks later I would be on the starting line of the national inter clubs (European xc trials) unfortunately jet lagged had sunk in and I would end up 7th Irish and alternate for the Irish team for the European cross country. I thought alot after the race and although I put it up to the best Irish athletes in the country which was the deepest Irish field in years and winning the team title by 1 point. The only person that knew my real disappointment was my Dad as he knew the work I had put in to get here. The next week I would go over and over in my head why I felt the way I did and what I did wrong but all I could come to the conclusion was that I had two choices feel sorry for myself or use finishing 7th as fuel that I never want to be in that situation ever again. So now i sit in a hotel room in Monte Gordo Portugal a professional training town on the Algarve where i am planning on staying here from December 13th until January 9th on my own unless you include the Russian and Polish federation that are also here and occasionally nor in my general direction. Regarding my training and expiernce in California in the mountains that will be all be revealed soon. Until next time.