Julia holds up her good name.

I have been competing at Eukonkannon MM-kisat since 2003. I still can't spell that word after all this years let alone to pronounce it!

I'm a finer specimen of a woman (i.e. bigger) than most women that enter this
World Championships. Some people have asked in the past if I find it troublesome competing with the 49kg ladies. I simply tell them the objects of the race, namely 1. Win the woman's weight in beer and 2. Have fun!

Coming to Finland for the first time in 2003 I had many preconceptions about
the place, I thought that it would be colder, greyer, windier and wetter than
Ireland. That everybody had a reindeer and that not one person would understand

Wowee! I was blown straight out of the water on all accounts! Most people in
Ireland go to the south of Europe for a "sun holiday". I have been advising all
my friends to come to Finland, where 24hr sunshine and clean and active living
is the order of the day.

Food, fishing, saunas, lake swimming, BBQ's and parties all the time, the
Finns put down a great summer of entertaining themselves and their neighbours.
Their gardens are lush and full of beautiful flowers. You may think I'm
painting a "Too Beautiful" image of the place but believe me, come here and see
for yourself.

Unlike the Irish, the Finns are a little more reserved at the start but "to
know a Finn is to love a Finn"! Once you get past that austere shell you will
find the most loving, giving, spiritual and hilarious people that love to talk!

I love them so much I came back to see the winter, it's snowing and last night
it was -17c! Ireland has a temperate climate so anything below -4c is a great
cause of excitement for me. The houses are hot and snow is just like sugar,
crunchy underfoot - not the best for making snowmen!

Speaking of men - I must say the Finnish men are very beautiful! Other scenery includes Christmas trees, green in the summer and white in the winter and lakes, dark and bottomless in the summer and solid ice in the winter. Cross country skiing is a local activity in the winter that I'm going to try today!

The race itself? On the day about 8000 spectators come to watch at the local
school running track, some people come in fancy dress, some in the latest high
tech running gear. The most competitive are the Estonians, they have been
winning this race for years! Every year they have a new way of carrying or

I had the honour of being carried by former world champion Margo
Uusorg in 2007. It was an experience I'm unlikely to forget! I came 29th out
of the 44 couples. Not bad considering I have always come last in previous

I don't know who is going to carry me in 2008 but I know I will see you there!