TMR Yearbook: Class of 2016 – Laura Wu

My name is Laura, and I recently completed the This Mum Runs Couch to 5K Absolute Beginners course on Clifton Down.

-I never knew that running can be fun-

I’m a stay-at-home mum to my daughter aged 3.5 and my son aged 1.5. My running experience before TMR consisted of training for and then running a half marathon when my daughter was 13 months old. The day of the race was the last day I ran until this March, almost 2.5 years later! Let’s just say that I endured rather than enjoyed that time of my running career! When I started the C25K course this March, I could probably run no more than 5 minutes without stopping.

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TMR Yearbook: Class of 2016: Harriet Hartley

My Name is Harriet and I have just completed the This Mum Runs Couch to 5K course at Clifton Down.

Harriet Hartley, TMR Mum (1)

I have 2 children, 1 2.9 months and 1, 7 month old. I am used to being fit but this has waned and I was struggling to get back to pre-pregnancy size and shape due to a slight like for chocolate. Otherwise my diet is pretty healthy. I’m a Social Worker but currently on maternity leave and dreaming of not having to go back, but sadly think that is not going to become a reality.

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September Mum of the Month – Amy Kate

Ever since she attended TMR’s first ever Social Run in Bath last November, Amy Kate has been a running machine with a near faultless attendance to our Social Runs. Here at TMR HQ we thought it was about time we recognised Amy’s role as a cornerstone of our Bath community, and after speaking on the phone it was clear she totally deserved to fly the TMR flag this month.

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Not only has Amy given back to the TMR community through training as a Run Angel and leading weekly runs, but she’s even inadvertently started an additional weekly run with fellow Mamas on Friday mornings. This all started when Amy was training for the Bath Half Marathon last autumn, and began running 5K before work on Friday mornings. This weekly run grew organically when Janice Tissington decided to join her through winter. By spring more and more TMR Mamas were braving the early starts to run with them too. Now Amy’s Friday 5K’s are a regular feature of TMR Bath, which we at HQ love to see!

On top of all of this, since gaining confidence in her running with TMR, Amy now also manages to squeeze in two or three solo runs a week. When I asked Amy what she has planned in her running diary over the next few months, we could see why these are needed! Between the Royal Half Park in October (which she is running to raise money for The Anna Lewis Brighter Future Fund), the Skyline Winter series of 10k’s (which entails competing in four 10k races over winter), the Bath Half in March and the Bristol to Bath marathon next October, you can safely say that this is one mum that definitely runs.

You may be reading this and feeling a little intimidated by Amy’s running success, but like everyone, Amy has been on a running journey. At many points, she’s felt inadequate and overwhelmed just like many of our Mamas. Amy tells me that before TMR she had run on and off for about 10 years. However, she always stopped when insecurities about her running abilities would resurface. This she largely blamed on trying to run with clubs; often finding herself the slowest in a club whose member’s view each other competitively, she would leave the sessions on a low.

In contrast, the supportive and empowering approach taken on TMR runs finally convinced Amy that she was good enough. She tells us that TMR taught her that everyone has to start somewhere, and that people can only improve.  Through such an encouraging community she is now in a position where running is a constant and integral part of her life.

And as our phone call continues, it’s crystal clear that Amy’s the perfect person to represent TMR this September. In a nutshell, she just gets us. She understands that running with TMR is about so much more than just exercise. She tells us enthusiastically about the supportive social network and strong friendships she has made within TMR, and about the essential perspective and headspace she gets from running.  If ever things start to get on top of her in life or if she’s had a bad day at work, she knows she can always strap on some trainers and run it out.

And whilst we believe running is about doing something just for you, we appreciate that our runners are still first and foremost all Mamas. That’s why when Amy tells us that her favourite thing to do is to run next to her 5 year old son as he cycles, it makes us melt a little.

So thank you Amy, for making sure our TMR torch shines bright in Bath! Each week with your help we’re getting #MoreMumsRunning.

TMR Yearbook: Class of 2016 -Anna Parlour

My name is Anna and I have just completed the C25K Absolute Beginners course on The Downs.

Anna Parlour, TMR Mum
I’m just like most Mums I think, knackered most of the time, suffocated with constant guilt about what I should and should not be doing at home, at work and everywhere, I crave wine and wish I could eat limitless amounts of chocolate.

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TMR Yearbook: Class of 2016 – Anna Beeton

My name is Anna and I have recently started the This Mum Runs Couch to 5K Absolute Beginners course at Royal Victoria Park, Bath.

Anna Beeton, TMR Mum

I have two children, a 3.5 year old and a 10 month old.  I’m definitely in the lazy camp and don’t do any real kind of exercise apart from running after the kids.  I have got into the habit of eating too much and doing very little so I am carrying some extra weight!

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TMR Yearbook: Class of 2016 – Abi Corboy

 

My name is Abi, I completed the This Mum Runs C25k in January, have done the Technique Masterclass and also recently the 5k plus course, all in Keynsham.

Abi Corboy, TMR Mum 1

I’m a busy mum of two beautiful kids; Noah who is 4, and Ruby who is now 9 months. I’m currently off on maternity leave but am normally self-employed working in Sales, which involves a lot of driving (ie sitting still)!

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August Mum Of The Month – Kathy Rogers

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With a few 10Ks under her belt and plans for more in the future, there’s no question that Kathy Rogers is now a runner.

Yet she still seems surprised by that fact herself, this woman who summed up her attitude to sport pre-TMR in the simple phrase ‘‘eughhh exercise’’.  Thus it was with a mix of pride and disbelief that she told me on the phone how she has now been known to head out for a solo 10K run on a Friday night. When, she wondered, did she become one of those people who exercise, by choice, on a weekend?!

In fact, her surprise at her running success is more understandable when you’re aware of her journey up to this point with TMR. Kathy’s path into running has not been easy, and where she is now is a testament to her determination in the face of the many hurdles the world sent her way.

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First there came the shin splints, which ultimately forced her to stop running in 2014 and to drop out of the original Couch to 5K course the following January. Things continued to go wrong for Kathy in 2015 and a combination of injuries and personal issues led to 8 months when she didn’t have the headspace or time to be running. Eventually, determined to get back into running she enrolled on the Tyntesfield couch to 10K course in September 2015. This went well until week 4, when injuries once again forced her to drop out. These complications were followed by illness, which eventually developed into pneumonia and left her bed-bound for the majority of autumn. Running was once again strictly out of the question.

However, Kathy wasn’t ready to give up (not that Mel would ever let her!). Jump forward to January this year and she was back, once again on the Tynesfield couch to 10K course, a last attempt on her behalf to prove that she could actually run. She jokes about the tough love shown by her Run Maker Gemma Davis that helped push her outside her comfort zone and improve with each week until suddenly there were no weeks left. 3 courses and 18 months later, Kathy ran the Tyntesfield 10K! An achievement made all the sweeter for Kathy by having her friend and fellow TMR Mama Rachael James running by her side.

Following her course she joined the social and then the training runs. She has gone from strength to strength with the support and encouragement of the TMR community, which she describes as somewhere where women “build each other up” rather than being in competition. And she has also decided to give back to this community that has helped her so much, through training as a Run Angel and pledging to lead community runs.

Kathy’s now surpassed her original goal – to be able to run a 10K without totally stressing out about it – and has set her sights on getting faster at 10K and getting involved with more races. Inspired by her brothers efforts running the London marathon for charity this year, Kathy herself managed to raise £450 for St Peter’s Hospice through running the Bristol 10K. She recently even managed to get her husband in on the running hype, completing the Two Tunnels race with him earlier this year.

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Despite her modest amusement at being called inspirational, there’s no denying that’s what her story is. Ending the phone call with a question about her plans for the future, it’s hard not to feel moved when she tells me (amidst exclamations of “and I can’t quite believe I’m saying this”) that this Autumn she’s booked a family day out running at the Dyrham Park Family fun runs. Not only has she overcome barriers to be able to run personally, but her children seem to be following suit. She tells me proudly that her 5 year old son completed his first race, running one mile for sport relief, and that her daughter tries to join in with her warm ups in the hallway before she heads out.

So if this isn’t a story that proves you should never give up, we don’t know what is.

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Look out for updates and videos from Kathy on our Facebook page in the next few weeks.

 

All about the Girl

 

portishead triathlon

Guest Blog by Corinne Ribbons

A few weeks ago on Twitter I shared an article about the new Always #LikeAGirl advert campaign

That got me thinking. With a similar feisty feminist message as the This Girl Can campaign tries to get across, it’s the latest in a push to empower girls to excel in sport and exercise (hallelujah!).

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This Mum Runs inspires 1000th beginner to get running!

1st ever couch to 5k

So this photo is of the final session of the first ever beginners running group we ever did back in January 2015. They had all just run their first ever 5k. I won’t lie, it was emotional!

The reason we started beginners programmes in the first place was because one of the Mums on the TMR Facebook group posted saying ‘they couldn’t run to the end of the road’ and so couldn’t come to our social runs.

There was talk of going to the park and using a book to work out what to do. I couldn’t stand by and watch that happen and offered to lead a Couch to 5k programme.

So last January this group of intrepid Mums braved the freezing cold winter nights, the dark, the cold, the hail and the snow. One particularly eventful night there was even a huge thunder storm and lots of forked lightening which when you have a metal whistle in your mouth (like I did) is a particularly alarming moment!

But it was a pretty special moment for us too. Because it was the start of one of the things that is most important to me and to This Mum Runs as we continue to grow:

*Helping women who have never run before get started*

*Providing the self belief that many women lack after terrible experiences of PE at school and sport through their lives*

*Offering support, encouragement, advice and motivation by the bucket load to help women get out the door for a run and to keep doing it!*

Couch to 5kers pre Bristol 10k

Here is the same group of women 5 months later about to take part in their first ever 10K. Aside from the weather being infinitely better, what an incredible achievement!

Fast forward a year and it turns out there were lots of women who felt exactly the same.

In the last 12 months, we’ve trained a team of 50 Run Makers who between them have coached over 1000 WOMEN on our Couch to 5k programme.

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1000 WOMEN!! How amazing is that?

It is one of the many things that I am most proud of out of everything we have achieved so far.

And it is a big focus for everything we do in the future as we roll out This Mum Runs to new locations.

So.

What better reason to invest in our crowdfunding campaign than this?

Invest and you’ll be helping us to grow the team that will inspire 1000s more women to take the first step and get out the front door. So that we can help them to make running a regular fixture in their lives.

Our campaign is now live on Crowdcube, the worlds leading investment crowdfunding platform. In the first 48 hours we attracted over 130 investors and we’d love you to join them.

To read more about our campaign and to invest today, the link to our campaign is right here:

https://www.crowdcube.com/…/this-mum-runs-ltd/pitches/qBwz0l

Join us, and tell your friends too….together we can get the world running one Mum at a time!

 

My Perfect Ten

 

10k team

It’s sometimes a wierd thing, running a running business. As you can imagine, I talk about running. A LOT.

I get asked all the time ‘Do you run every day, bet you do?’, ‘How many marathons have you run, bet it’s loads?’It’s almost as if we judge each others running credentials by how many miles we pack into the week, or how far we drag ourselves.

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