What Training for a Marathon with a Toddler Looks Like
This marathon training cycle took me through a lot of phases in my sons life. I started training in April, when he was only five months old. I ran the marathon only sixteen days after he turned 1 year old. Running through so much of the ‘baby’ stage was difficult, but it also proved to me that if I can train then, I can train whenever. I learned a lot through training with such a young person as my sidekick and since I know some of you guys are young moms, I thought it would be fun to give you an idea what it looked like for me!
Training for a marathon with a little nugget, meant either 1: early, early runs or stroller running. I didn’t really start running with him in the stroller until he was around six months, which meant the first month, most of my runs were early in the morning! Thankfully, during that time of year, it was light enough and I ran with a group of people which met up at 5:25. I loved getting up early and having six or so miles done before 7am. Not only did it help me feel super productive during the day, but I also was able to relax the rest of the day and focus on Benaiah, the house and business the rest of the day/ Winning! If I wasn’t able to run in the very early hours of the morning, I would then take Niah out with the stroller. Even though stroller running is different than ‘normal’ running, I found it freeing. I was still able to go out and do things with Niah, he had fun, and I was able to enjoy some peace and quiet. I also loved that I was able to set him an example at a young age of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Aside from showing Benaiah and future kiddos Jesus every day, modeling healthy, balanced living is one of the biggest things I want to show my kids at a young age. Stroller running is a great way to get this done!
I also had to time Benaiah’s nap times around when I would get done with a run. I don’t like him sleeping in the stroller (now that he is older) because if he does that is his ‘nap’ and he doesn’t want to nap in his crib. So, I had to be creative and sometimes that meant running after his morning nap. I remember running 9 miles, after his morning nap, in the heat of the day. It was such a hot run, but it was one of my favorite runs because I felt so intense. 🙂 Making memories with Benaiah, showing him how to chase after goals is one of my favorite things as a mother!
This may be TMI, but oh well. I get asked a lot if my supply was affected during training and I was happy to find out that I didn’t have that issue. I know for other women they struggle keeping their supply up while running miles upon miles. I don’t know if it was because of how frequent of an eater Benaiah was, or if I just kept enough calories in to compensate for the amount of calories burned, or if I drank enough water, etc, etc. I do know that every woman’s body is different and for me, my supply wasn’t affected. (Very thankful for that)
Some times, marathon training with a toddler, meant really early mornings, or evening runs or during the heat of the day runs. And even though every run wasn’t perfect or ideal and even though the stroller seemed to slow my pace down, the memories are worth it. I am so excited that I get to look back on my first marathon (yes, there will be more) and remember training with my firstborn for 70% of the training cycle. So, yes, while marathons take a lot of time to train for, it is possible to train with a kiddo. It will be more challenging and a little more inconvenient, but the memories and the example you are leading for those kiddos is so, so worth it.
Questions of the Day
- Do you run with your kiddos? How does that look for you?
- What is your favorite outdoor activity?
- My Tuesday is going to be amazing because ___________!