She’s a Winner: Our Interview with Marathon Mum, Hayley

With the London Marathon 2018 just under a week away, we’ve been following one of our #SimplyFamily members on her training journey. Hayley Woolnough on as the days have been building up for the big day! Hayley’s been training at Simply Gym Cheltenham and has been fitting her marathon training around her busy life – with work and being a busy mum of four!

We spoke to Hayley about what motivated her to take part in the London Marathon, balancing her busy training regime with her busy home life, the challenges she has faced along the way, and top tips about training for a marathon.

interview Marathon Mum

How long have you been running and training for the marathon?

I have been running for 3.5 years now. I started on the C25k app after not being able to run for 2 minutes. I started my 16 week training plan for VLM 2018 in the second week in January. It should of been the first week but we were all hit with the dreaded flu virus at Christmas.

What challenges have you faced along the way, and what motivates you to keep going?

Definitely without doubt the biggest challenge on this training plan has been the weather! I thought it would be the children, work  life, running balance but that has all gone as smoothly as I could of hoped for. My motivation on those cold snowy days had been the thought of race day, wanting to get there feeling that I have given my training plan 100%. and being mentally and physically in the best place I can be.

How do you balance your family life, running around with your children with your gym/running life?

I’m not going to lie it has been so hard some nights and mornings to leave my family to go out to train, especially on the freezing cold dark nights of club training. I have tried to balance leaving the younger two by getting up at 5am & going to the gym or for a morning run whilst they are all sleeping so I’m not out training too many evenings a week.

With your varied training regime, how has Simply Gym helped you to accomplish your goals?

Simply Gym have been brilliant in their support of my journey & in the knowledge I have gained to aid making my body as strong as it can be to tackle the massive challenge that I face on Sunday 22nd April. I would advise anyone who hasn’t tried a Indoor Cycling or Pilates class to go for it, I’ve had such fun!

interview Marathon Mum

What is your top tip for anyone wanting to join the gym or even take up the Marathon?

For anyone thinking of joining a gym I would say to book a PT session with the coaches at Simply Gym so that you can get a plan that is tailor-made for you. I myself, have found the best way to grow as a gym user & runner is to have a plan that you can follow & get direction from each week in order to stay focused & motivated.


We can’t wait to cheer her on and will keep you updated on our social channels on how Hayley does! If you’re inspired by Hayley’s story, let us know if you’re running in the marathon, or if you know someone who is, let us know and we’ll give you a shout-out!

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