September brings change – juggling study, work and school runs.

I’m Bethan, 39 and an accounts manager within my husband’s business. I left my full time job in March 2018 to enable me to help my husband grow his business and of course it means I now have the flexibility to do school runs and after school activities with Dexter my 10 year old son.

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I discovered TMR at the point where I wasn’t going to do any more long races as I was fed up of training alone. I saw pictures on FB of the TMR launch in Cardiff on Cardiff Mummy Says page. I was disappointed to have missed it and joined the group. It was 17 March (an early Sunday morning) when I plucked up the courage to join the group for my first run.

As I walked nearer to the meeting point my nerves were in pieces; I need not have worried. One of the angels approached me and started chatting and the rest is history as they say. After running for a few months with the group every Sunday I saw Cathryn’s message about the angel training and thought why not! After finding my running confidence again I’ve entered several races including the Cardiff Half Marathon, Cardiff Trail Half Marathon and most recently the Vale of Glamorgan Coastal 18.5 mile Trail run!!

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The Summer holidays have been challenging, trying to keep a 10 year old entertained and fitting in working from home. Work meetings have been in the evenings which is definitely not ideal but the only way around things in the long holidays.

In September I am going back to college part time for another year of Accountancy. It really does feel like I’m going back in school. I passed my 1st year so I must be doing something right, I’m looking forward to it but at the same time I’m anxious about juggling school/work/college and life in general.

It’s the little things that get me through it though – like my son saying well done when I pass an exam, my TMR runs to get the headspace I need and of course my Friday night glass of wine (or 2)!

Last year I went out running on the morning of my exams so that I wouldn’t be thinking too much about them – I’ll be doing that this year too.

Cathryn is flying the This Mum Runs flag in Wales

In March, This Mum Runs launches in Cardiff with plans to offering free social runs from various locations across the city.

Hiring Cathryn Scott as the Community Leader for Cardiff is such an exciting milestone for us and she will be spearheading our city wide expansion plans. 

Here’s a chance to get to know Cathryn – how she discovered her love of running by accident when she was 15 and her dreams of building a huge TMR community of running Mums in the Welsh capital.

Meet Cathryn

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Hello! I’m a Mum of three children age 9, 7 and 4,  was born and raised in Barry and have lived in Cardiff for 17 years.  I’ve worked as a parenting blogger, freelance journalist and PR – and am a qualified yoga teacher!

I was 15 when I discovered quite by accident that I can run. I wasn’t a sporty child at all – always the last to be picked in team games and I mostly hated PE at school. However when my class were asked to take to the running track for an 800m race during a term of athletics lessons, no one was more surprised than me when I beat the rest of my classmates by a full lap.

That was the start of my love affair with running and I ran off and on throughout the rest of my teenage years and 20s. It all stopped when I wanted to start a family, though, and it would be 12 years later before I’d even think about putting on my running shoes.

In December 2017 I nervously started running again, with the goal of being able to run 10K by my 40th birthday in June 2018. On the first attempt, I managed seven minutes on the treadmill but was a red hot sweaty mess,  barely able breathe – and I nearly jacked in the whole idea there and then!

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However I persevered and slowly began to see progress. I reached my 10K goal (and have got two sparkly medals to prove it) – and, after being persuaded by friends, took part in my first half marathon, the Cardiff Half, in October 2018. I loved it so much I’m doing it again this year as well as a few other events along the way too. I also am a regular at Cardiff Parkrun as well as Junior Parkrun with my kids children, which I absolutely love.

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I am absolutely thrilled to be part of the team bringing This Mum Runs to Cardiff. TMR is just THE most incredible community supporting Mums to make a bit of time for themselves through running-  I’ve watched it grow from afar and was so excited to hear the plans to expand into Cardiff that I jumped at the chance to apply for this role!

In the first week in my new role, I’ve already been busy planning our Cardiff “Launch Run” on Sunday 3 March as well as setting up our first weekly Cardiff runs, and some other exciting social events which we’ll share details of soon. I’ll be sharing all the details in the This Mum Runs Cardiff Facebook community here

As a busy, working mum, running gives me the much needed headspace and mental clarity I’ve realised I need to function. It’s also helped me to learn to love my post-baby body again, helping me realise just how strong she am and how much I can achieve when I put my mind to it. I just can’t wait to share all of this, and more, with the Mums of Cardiff through This Mum Runs. I hope you’ll come and join me!

This Mum Runs is a people-powered community-first organisation that empowers Mums everywhere to be healthier and happier. Through a network of volunteer Run Angels we offer free, social runs for Mums every Wednesday and Sunday across London, Bristol and Bath – with Cardiff and Brighton launching soon (and more to follow throughout 2019). To keep up to date with our plans – and for plenty of inspiration too – sign up for our weekly email here. 

A huge thank you @Facebook – who’s support and funding through the Facebook Community Leadership Programme has made our expansion into new cities possible.