Things haven’t always been smooth sailing…
One thing I can say is that I’ve learned a few lessons along the way about how not to do things. In fact the first time I ran a marathon, I’d very badly underestimated just how much time it would take up, which given the fact that I was working full time, studying part time and our son was quite young, was a bit of a flaw. In fact you could probably say I was downright selfish – I left pretty much everything to my husband, and understandably it really didn’t go down very well. However what it did make me realise was that if I was going to take on anything over a 10k, I really needed to do so with his full support. Because there was no way it would ever work without it!
For me planning is key!
When I look at events now one of the first things I need to think about is can I really give this the time I need. My husband and son both play cricket, which takes up loads of time in the summer, and our son also plays rugby. Pre pandemic, that meant our son had training sessions and games at least twice a week, for pretty much the whole year. We also all belong to the same running club and are regular Parkrunners. Any training needs to fit around what they have on, as well as what is on the plan. Oh and that small thing called work, and anything going on at school!
I’ll often sit down on a Sunday and try to look at the week ahead. I’ll do this with my husband so that we can see what is coming up, so I can work out where to fit my runs in. I’m happy to admit that I am not a morning person. I am full of admiration for people who can get up early day in, day out! But sometimes I have to set that early alarm and get out to get a session done. Working from home for the last 12 months has helped in some respect – if my run is less than an hour then I’ll try and fit it around my lunch break. That was especially helpful in the winter as it meant I wasn’t out in the dark on my own.
The other thing we look at is where training can be done together. As Jack has gotten older and can be left for periods of time that has helped massively, as it means that child care isn’t always required. But Jack will also join me on interval or hill sessions where he can run at his pace after the warm up and I won’t slow him down! That also applies to Chris, though I do try and get him to time his easy runs with my interval sessions so he can help me hit my target paces!
When Chris and I have both been training for half marathons at the same time, we’ve done things like one of us run to Parkrun, whilst the other person drives there with Jack. Then we do a car key swap, and the person who ran there drives home afterwards. It’s become a very handy way of getting a 10 mile run in!
Be prepared to be flexible!
As you would expect, things don’t always go that smoothly because life just isn’t like that! Work gets in the way, children and adults get sick, life just happens sometimes! If I could offer any tip at all it would be that you have to prepare to be flexible! This might mean moving a session from one day to the next, or moving the time of day it happens. Training for an event can be something that takes up a lot of time. If Chris wasn’t able to take Jack to a training session then I can take him and try to do something while he’s there. It might mean doing an easy run instead of a tempo run, but that’s ok!
This is my perspective – I know this won’t always be the case
I have written this from my perspective. Which for me is having a husband who is supportive of my crazy running ideas, and understands the benefits that I get from running. He knows that it makes me a better person all round, so we work together to fit things in. Don’t get me wrong, it took a while for us to get to this place, and it definitely helps that our children are older (our daughter was often able to do some of the childcare if we were both out) but I couldn’t do it without his support. However I know this won’t be the case for everyone so appreciate other people will balance their training commitments differently.
NHS Contract Manager from Bristol
Age group: FV45
Club: Active Soul UK
Coach: Marcus Sladden
A return to racing as we used to know it – a look back at the ASICS London 10kby Vicky Ledbury / Jul. 26, 2021
This past weekend I’ve been in London with my ASICS FrontRunner team mates where we got to experience something none of us have been able to since March 2020. A race which had a mass start instead of being set off in a socially distanced way. I want to share my reflections on both the race, where we were able to “pace” and also finally being able to spend time with the team.
Run Mummy Run!by Vicky Ledbury / Feb. 22, 2021
As a mum who works full time, and loves being as active as possible, I spend a lot of time juggling different balls with my husband to try and fit in all of our family commitments. One of the places I turn to for support is the Run Mummy Run community. I find it a really safe space to talk about both running and life in general, and the women within the community are always really friendly and helpful.
Why celebrating crossing a finish line is just as important as celebrating a finish timeby Vicky Ledbury / Aug. 03, 2020
Imagine the scenario… You’ve just crossed the line in a race, where you gave it everything you had. One of your fellow racers sees you with your medal, and instead of congratulating you, they ask you what time you did. All of a sudden you start to think “I know they are way quicker than me, my time wasn’t very good”… so instead of sharing your time, you make excuses about not sharing it, and walk off, with your head down, feeling deflated, your end of race experience tarnished.