The busy mummies guide to running a marathon

If you have ever run a marathon or are thinking about it you will no doubt have read a range of marathon training tips and perhaps pulled together a training plan for yourself, and possibly also a diet and supplements plan. This may have included all or some of the following tips :

  • Give yourself time to train;
  • Gradually increase your mileage;
  • Don’t just run – skip, swim, use the gym, cycle;
  • Find the perfect trainers;
  • Do a long run every week;
  • Do a few short runs every week;
  • Train up to around 20 miles;
  • Find a running partner or club;
  • Stay hydrated.

drink more water

If you are a busy mummy however, you might have looked at lists like this and thought no chance! If you rarely go to the loo on your own, how could you ever train for a marathon.

My marathon running began a few years before I had my first child. I trained hard and I finished it. I was never going to be fast and to be honest that was never the goal. The goal was to finish a marathon and I did. I felt as if it was a great achievement. Then that made me want to do another.

I completed a few more races before having my first baby. Then I challenged myself to complete a marathon after having a child. With a bit of juggling and a running pushchair I completed a marathon 9 months after having my baby. Another marathon followed and then I signed up to a mountain marathon in Switzerland . I ran that pregnant. Not very, but still pregnant. Not recommended, but again I finished it.

ben nevis

A few others followed over the years. Still I was slow but I always finished them. That brings me to today. I now have four children and have challenged myself to complete another marathon. I am signed up, but as far as formal marathon training goes that’s about it. It will be 9 months after my fourth child was born. The busy mummies marathon preparation goes more like this:

  • Never walk up the stairs – always run. If you don’t it’s a missed opportunity;
  • When the older children are sleeping pop on an exercise dvd and hope the baby will be happy to watch;
  • Always practice your pelvic floor exercises at traffic lights;
  • Use a baby carrier and make the most of the added weight as resistance training;
  • Take advantage of everyday activities like ironing and cleaning, they create great opportunities for a few squats and twists;
  • Eat sensibly;
  • Drink lots of water, especially if you are still breastfeeding;
  • Make the most of everyday lifting of children and pushchairs to work on your core muscles;
  • Walk quickly everywhere you go especially with the pushchair or baby carrier;
  • Run in the park with the children – get them to race you;
  • Take a decent supplement like Q10Β to help you with endurance and boosting energy levels – lots of runners take these and they are extra helpful if your energy levels are already low.

You get the picture! Paula Radcliffe you will NOT be but you WILL finish that marathon!


  1. I’m so impressed at what you have achieved. I ran my only marathon 12 weeks pregnant. I’ve managed as far as a half since then but I don’t feel I have time to properly prepare for a full marathon. I’m doing a 10k in June though and if training goes well perhaps I’ll be persuaded.

  2. I was really into my running last year and really wanted to do a marathon or even half marathon but my knees gave in and I struggle to run now here and there I do it but I have to take long breaks in between. I loved it though. These are great tips. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

  3. I’m so impressed by this! I always wanted to do one. Know now I won’t but am always impressed by people who do! Quite jealous! Thanks for linking up with us #bigfatlinky

    1. The things about them is that although the top runners are all the same build, shape and age (ish) , the regular runners are all ages,shapes, sizes and abilities and that is one of the reasons I love it. A few years ago, I used to see a older man who was 77 at the time and he had run over one hundred marathons, he had a huge tummy but he just kept on plodding. I just want to be able to plod like that at 77 lol. Thanks for reading πŸ™‚

  4. I love this, not only inspiring but also practical advice. I had a few complications after the birth of my second baby and wasn’t sure I’d manage to get back to running. I’m delighted now at ten months post-partum that I’ve been able to rejoin my running club. I’m hoping tentatively to run a marathon next spring all being well.

    1. Fantastic! Each time I have run for the first time after a baby it feels like an achievement that nothing falls out on the road lol. Good luck, let me know how you get on πŸ™‚

  5. A woman after my own heart. I’m a total squatter ironer and run up the stairs kinda gal. You’re so right, it is possible, not easy, but possible and it is most definitely worth it. Go you!

  6. Great tips! I have started running, I’m aiming for a half marathon next year I think. You have done so well, I can’t believe you have done marathons pregnant and so soon after birth!

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