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Me and my health: Maura Muldoon discusses her lifestyle

By Helen Carson

The 57-year-old, who lives in south Belfast, is chairperson of the Northern Ireland Women's Premier League. She was also the first woman on the board of Glentoran Football Club and was the goalkeeper for Belfast United.

Q: Do you take regular exercise - and if so what? 

A: Nowadays, I walk up to 12k every day, usually in Ormeau Park in the morning before work. I take Nina my Jack Russell for walks there and we're back again in the evening. The Giant's Ring, Barnett's Demesne and the Mournes are also among my favourite places to walk. I have run the New York, London and Dublin marathons and used to cycle. Taking part in the New York marathon was like running through lots of movie sets.

Q: What's been the worst illness you've ever had? 

A: While I don't want to go into detail, I was seriously ill eight years ago but now I have recovered.

Q: How healthy is your diet? 

A: It's pretty healthy as I like eating salads and try not to eat too much meat. Breakfast is usually porridge with yoghurt and fruit, with more yoghurt and fruit at lunchtime. At teatime I will have salad or chicken with boiled potatoes. I eat moderately all week then it will be lasagne if eating out with fish, potatoes and vegetables on a Sunday. I love fish but probably don't eat enough of it.

Q: Any bad habits? 

A: Eating crisps - it is really bad - but I only do it occasionally. Tyrrell cheese and onion are my favourites.

Q: Do you drink and/or smoke - and if so how much? 

A: White wine is my tipple and I will have a couple of glasses on a Friday night and never drink during the week. I have probably tried smoking but it never appealed - one of my pet hates is an overflowing ashtray.

Q: Do you take any health supplements? 

A: Omega oils every day. I'm not organised enough to get into a routine with any other vitamins. I don't have any strong opinions on whether I think they work or not, but I do believe you need to be taking them for a while before you can expect to see a difference.

Q: How do you take time out? 

A: Walking in Ormeau Park and the Mournes or reading the latest Danish crime thriller.

Q: How well do you sleep?

A: Very well unless there is something preying on my mind to do with work or something else going on in my life. I usually go to bed at around 10.30pm and then get up at 6.30am so I have time to take Nina for a walk. I am very fortunate that I can get up early in the morning and it must be so difficult for families to actually find a time in the day when they can get some me-time

Q: Do you worry about getting old?

A: Getting old is inevitable so I don't worry about it. As the famous saying goes - there are only two certainties in life - death and taxes. I think wisdom comes with age - it's only when you get older that you realise so many of things you spent your time and energy worrying or being anxious about are trivial. You learn that what matters most is yourself, your family and friends and living in the moment and enjoying what you have.

Q: What is your go-to product/habit that keeps you feeling healthy?

A: Walking in the Mourne Mountains as there is nothing like getting away from everything - being in the wilderness and the vastness of it all. A lot of the walks I go on involve trekking in mountains and being outdoors and being surrounded by them actually makes me feel serene.

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