Marathon Runner

GanielHeadShotFor those of you who have asked:

Yes, I am also the marathon runner

On 21 February 2016, I ran 2.38.47 in the Seville Marathon, a personal best.

It was tough getting fit for Seville as I had my first child, Ronan O’Neill, on 26 May 2015 — so he was only nine months old when I stepped on the line in Seville.

On 27 July 2014, I ran the Marathon for Northern Ireland at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. I placed 12th in 2.40.29, in what was then my second fastest time ever.

I was born in Maine, USA, but now have both Irish and British citizenship and I am proud to run for Northern Ireland. I have received tremendous support from North Belfast Harriers, Athletics Northern Ireland, Sports Institute Northern Ireland, the Marathon Mission, Belfast City Council, and the local running community.

I ran collegiately at Providence College, USA (1995-1999), and was a member of the 1995 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship Cross Country Team. I won the 1999 Walter Byers Award for the top female student-athlete in the NCAA.

Running Biography: Gladys Ganiel

Power of Ten Profile

Nation: Northern Ireland/Ireland

Club: North Belfast Harriers

Thanks to:



Coach: Matt Shields, North Belfast Harriers

Click here to read a marathon Q&A with Matt (2011)




‘The Guru’, Ray Treacy, my coach at Providence, who continues to answer all my questions after many years!





My training for Seville was supported by strength and conditioning coach James Knox, physio Ross Harris, pilates instructor Neil Healey, and massage therapist Jen Goodall. Hydrorun underwater treadmill helped me through the pregnancy and post-partum.

For the Commonwealth Games, I benefited from the support team at the Sports Institute Northern Ireland, especially my strength and conditioning coach Paul Talty and physio Chris McNicholl; as well as Athletics NI massage therapist Kyle Alexander.

Personal Bests

Marathon: 2.38.47 (Seville, 2016)

Half Marathon: 75.08 (Dublin Rock n’ Roll, 2013)

10k Road: 34.42 (Swords 10k, Dublin, 2013)

Select Championship Medals:

Northern Ireland Cross Country Gold: 2010, 2011, 2013

Northern Ireland Cross Country Silver: 2009, 2014

Northern Ireland Half Marathon Gold: 2014

Ireland Marathon Bronze: 2011

Ireland Half Marathon Gold: 2007

Ireland Half Marathon Silver: 2011, 2013

Ireland Cross Country Bronze: 2011


Bangor Daily News article about Olympic marathon selection process (2016)

Irish Times article about Olympic marathon selection process (2016)

Bangor Daily News feature (2016)

Irish Times article about the Seville Marathon (2016)

Women’s Running Magazine article about running as you get older (2016)

Article by Tim Martin “Book Smarts & Personal Bests Keep Ganiel Grounded” (2014)

Belfast Telegraph article about Commonwealth Games Marathon

Athletics Northern Ireland article about Commonwealth Games Marathon

NiRunning Monthly Feature on Commonwealth Games Athletes (scroll down page)

BBC Interview about the Commonwealth Games 2014

Report on Berlin Marathon 2013

Bangor Daily News feature 2012

Blog after London Marathon 2010

commonwealth games

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