I don’t think there is any other sport or hobby where you can compete (well, participate in) in the same race as your sporting heroes. One my favourite memories is seeing Mo Farah rush past on the other side of the London marathon. Unfortunately, I have never got to run in the same race as Paula Radcliffe so Mo will have to do! For me, running is an escape from reality, it’s time to reflect, and it’s something you can set your own goals for. Who cares about comparing yourselves to everyone else on Strava? It’s about personal goals and personal achievement and all you need is a decent pair of shoes (and some cool merch ). No fancy expensive equipment required. You can also do it when it suits you. You’re in control.

My running journey started at a young age with memories of my Mum going out running with her friends (an escape from me and brothers no doubt). My Mum and I trained for our first half together (me at aged 19 and Mum at 50). We also trained for our first marathons together, every week saying “oooo we’re going into the unknown” as our training runs got longer and longer. It’s always been our time to chat; run off hangovers and have a reason to celebrate (neither of us being shy to drinking copious amounts of fizz postrace or post any run for that matter!). I also love running on my own, either listening to a good book or music, or just getting lost in my own thoughts.

When I became pregnant with my first daughter, Grace, a lot of people said I would no longer have time to run. I am not sure about anyone else but if someone suggests I can’t do something I have to prove them wrong! So I sensibly entered the Birmingham marathon which was 8 months post-partum. Training was admittedly tough, with many sleepless nights and I had to time my runs to fit in with Grace’s feeds as I was breastfeeding. I did a lot pf training pushing the buggy when Grace was old enough, stopping to feed on park benches, but it was our little escape together and we made a lot of crazy running friends along the way! Those who told me I wouldn’t have time, yes it was tricky but I made time and if anyone wants something enough they can make time too. It may mean setting your alarm a little earlier and investing in a head torch, but no one ever regrets a run. Yes its tough after work but you’ll always feel better. If there’s ever doubt in your head, always think of that feelings when you’ve finished, even if you only run a mile, it’s still a run!

Running is in my genes and I am forever grateful for that but I still work hard to achieve my personal goals like anyone else. Like the majority of the population, this year has been tough, juggling work, childcare and general life, but running has been my escape.

Like any Mum I want to be a positive role model for my girls and part of that for me is to show how keeping fit is fun and not something that should be considered a chore. I also want to show my girls how to be strong inside and out and yes life is competitive but the most important thing is to set and strive to achieve your own personal goals and not worry about anyone else’s.

My running journey started with my Mum and I am now lucky enough to share that journey with my girls




Abigail Halcarz is a mum of two beautiful girls who loves to run and to encourage and inspire other busy mums to keep fit and have fun with exercise. Her running journey has inspired her to write a book:

‘My Mummy Run's’ is a light hearted tale about a mummy and daughter's exercise adventure. You can purchase the book here or follow Abigail on Instagram here

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