30 years on McColgan reflects on the highs and lows

STRABANE native Peter McColgan spends much of his spare time on the links of Carnoustie these days, but 30 years ago he was at the peak of his powers on the track, at the start of what should have been several more years at the top.

Unfortunately for the now 57-year-old, his appearance at the 1991World Athletics Championships in Japan proved to be the beginning of the end of his racing career.

He ultimately paid the price for pushing himself too hard at times and for not pushing hard enough at others and at the age of 29 his time in an international vest was approaching the finish line.


“With my approach to athletics, even when I would go home to Strabane right though my career I’d still be in Felix’s on a Friday night,” he explained.

“Then at other times, when I did focus, when I was in America, I’d over do it. Looking back at my training diary, there would be times when I’d write ‘I’m really tired today’ and the same a few days later and now I’m asking myself ‘why am I doing track sessions every other day?’.

“It was absolute nonsense because I needed recovery and looking back now, people ask me ‘if you could go back and have your time again, what would you do different?’ and I would always say ‘I would train smarter’.

“I would train as hard but then train smarter. I’d take the odd easy day, know my body more. Just because I have a track session to do, doesn’t mean you have to do it, change it, take a day off, go for an easy run.”


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