Tag Archives: running with kids

My New Training Partner

For the past week I have had a new training partner joining me for some of my Army Run training runs. In addition to getting myself ready to run the half-marathon this year I have to help my oldest daughter (7) train for the 5km.

Back in May when she saw other kids running the 5km and 10km races my daughter decided she was going to run a race longer than the 2km race she did that weekend. She reminded me of her desire to run a 5km a few times over the summer so I registered her for the Army Run 5 km.

We officially started our training for the race with a few training runs last week before work for me and school for her. Weather permitting we are planning to go for our longest run so far later today.

The early weekday morning runs have been beneficial for both of us so far. For my daughter getting outside and being active is better than screen time while the rest of the family sleeps.

In my case being woken up by my daughter to go for a run in the morning gets my day off to an earlier start which is important now that we have two kids back in school and I am trying to get both kids out the door in time to catch the school bus and so I can get myself to work on time.

Race day is now 13 days away. That gives us at least a couple more weeks of training runs together. Hopefully after that we will able to continue this new routine .

Unexpected Long Run

My plan for today was to get in a 10-12 km run. However, my plan changed very early this morningand it worked for the better. What I ended up with was a long run and after three days of not running it was exactly what I needed.

At some point between 5:00-6:00 this morning my youngest daughter (1) decided that it was time to get up. Eventually it became apparent that there was not anything we could do to get her back to sleep. 

My wife came up with the idea that I should take for a run. Initially I thought it was a silly idea but then realized that I was not going to get back to sleep soon either and that if I did not go this morning it would be tougher to go later in the day because I would be exhausted from the early wake up call.

I quickly got ready for a run and loaded my daughter into the Chariot and headed out. Since I had the day off from work today I had the benefit of not having to worry about being on a deadline. My goal quickly became an 18-20 km run and I ended up with an 18.8 km run.

While my day did not get off to an ideal start a change in plans it worked out for the better in this case. I managed more mileage than expected and my daughter managed to get back to sleep over the course of our run.

Running with my Kids

Today I managed to get in mileage with my kids in two seperate runs. The first one this morning was a shorter run with my two oldest daughters. Taking advantage of Sunday Bikedays, which shutdown the parkways here to traffic for part of the day, I took my 3 year old in the Chariot while my 6 year rode her bike alongside us…

We managed 4.6 km. Unfortunately today was the last day of the year for Bikedays this year. However, now that she is too big for longer runs in the Chariot having her bike alongside me gives me another way to continue bringing my oldest with me when I run in the weekends. Hopefully we will be able to take advantage of it more often next year.

Run number two of the day was a standard run with my 3 year old in the Chariot this afternoon. After loading snacks into the Chariot we were off for another run, with a stop along the way to return some library books.  This time I ended up with a run of just over 15 km. 

Overall, I managed just under 20 today. Splitting it into two runs was not ideal but it was what worked best and spending the time with two of my daughters made it more entertaining and enjoyable. 

Saturday Stories

It’s time once again for another edition of Saturday Stories, a collection of some of my favourite stories and blog posts from the past week.
Here are this week’s stories…
A post about being a running dad.

A post about one runner’s passion for running.

Finally, recaps from the Canadian men who ran the Olympic marathon – Reid Coolsaet and Eric Gillis.

Adjusting to a Newborn

I have not been running or posting much lately with the arrival of a newborn nearly two weeks ago. There has not been as much time for running as we adjust to the new arrival at home.

Fortunately I have been able to fit in some runs over that time to keep me active. Most of those runs have come late at night after the kids were asleep and before I shut down for the night.

Today I was fortunate enough to be able to get in a run during the day. It was a hot day, 30C (86F), but it was nice to get out during the day again. I also had a partner join me for the run…

10 km done w. My 3 yr old in the Chariot in the heat today #runningdad #running #instarunners #run613 #6run3

A post shared by Patrick Girard (@pat42.2) on

Eventually I will get back into a more regular running routine once things at home have settled down a bit. I will be pacing the Army Run half-marathon in September once again this year.

For now I am enjoying something more important, spending time at home with my family.

Running with a Stroller


Roughly six years ago my wife and I purchased a Chariot stroller so I could run with our oldest daughter. I did not realize at the time how big a role the stroller would play in my running.

One of the things I regret is not keeping track of the mileage I have put on it since I started running with my kids. I’ve surprised myself by how far I’ve gone with it (30+ km runs) and how much my two girls have tolerated it.

It has been a great way to spend time with my two girls on the weekends and also a great way to share something I enjoy with them while seeing the sites around our city. I’ve shared many adventures with both of them.

It has also been a big reason why I have been able to continue to train for marathons with young kids at home. Anyone who has run a marathon before will agree that it is a big time commitment. If I did not have the option to take one of my kids out for a run with me I would have had to do more runs late at night or sacrifice more runs.

With my two girls now 6 and 3 I thought my time running with the stroller was coming to an end. My oldest is getting big to push around on my weekend runs and my youngest is not far behind. I thought this spring/summer would likely be the end of my running with the Chariot since my youngest will likely be too big to push around on long runs by the time next spring rolls around.

I’m happy to report that my adventures with the Chariot will continue for a while yet. My wife and I are expecting #3 this summer. I just hope the new arrival will enjoy joining me for tours of the city in the Chariot as much as her older sisters did.

Back to Running with the Chariot

Witht the nice weather here again I am back to running with the Chariot on weekends. Last Saturday my two year old and I went for a 22 km adventure. Here is what we saw along the way…

A duck in a fountain

The War Memorial


The Parliament Buildings


A statue of Rocket Richard, my dad’s favourite hockey player 

And finally, the horses of the RCMP Musical Ride 

As you can see it was a pretty eventful run. Now the tough part will be to come up with other sites to see the next time we go out.

Ducks to Demolitons, It’s All In a Sunday Run

Since last week was a recovery week I only had a 15 km run scheduled. The fact that building I used to work in was being imploded made it easy to pick out a route because I was curious to see how it would happen.

I had planned to take one of my daughters with me for the run but everyone was asleep as I got ready to leave the house. Knowing my oldest would be disappointed if she found out I went without her I went to see if Incould wake her and she jumped up as soon as I asked her if she still wanted to go see my old office building blown up.

Unfortunately I did not leave myself enough time to get to the site from my house before the implosion took place and I found myself running at my marathon pace to try and get there on time.  We were about 1 km away from the site when we heard the building come down. However, we continued so we could check out the aftermath.


On the way home a pair of ducks swimming in the Rideau Canal provided us with a little more excitement. As you can see, despite the rain Sunday morning was an entertaining adventure.


Long Runs With a Stroller

A few years ago after our first daughter was born my wife and I decided to buy a Chariot stroller. It turned out to be one of the best purchases we made after having kids. For me has been very important to my marathon training. I am not sure how much mileage we have put on it but without it I likely would not have achieved the results I have or trained for the number of marathons I have run.

Now that our youngest daughter is old enough to ride in the stroller while I run it has become even more useful, allowing my wife and I to head out do something with one of the kids while the other one of us is with the other kid. It is a routine that has worked out well for us on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

I am also fortunate that both of my girls are, for the most part, tolerant of coming along for my runs. For my long runs sometimes I will have to start early without one of them or bring the stroller home before going back out to complete another 4-5 km but I have managed to get in runs of over 20 km with both of them.

Sunday I managed to set my distance record with the Chariot. Setting out with my youngest daughter yesterday morning I started what was a planned 28 km run. I fully expected to have to return home to drop off the stroller before heading back out to finish my run. To my surprise, I was able to get in the full 28 km with the stroller.

Although she was starting to get restless over the last couple of km as we headed back home, my daughter and I completed 28 in 2:20. It certainly helped that it was a great morning for a run…


Why I Run

Since running the Toronto Waterfront Marathon last month I have managed to maintain a regular running schedule. With no races planned and no goals set for the rest of the year I wasn’t sure how easy or difficult it would be to maintain my regular schedule of 5-6 runs per week.

So far I have managed to accomplish that. The main reason is that I enjoy running primarily because it keeps me active and I feel better when I am running regularly. I have also mentioned on here before that, for me at least, running is the best way to unwind after a long or stressful day.

Now my running routine is helping in another way. With a new baby on the way anytime now it is hard to think of anything other than that. Going for a run is about the only time now when I can manage to think of something else.

Though I am not training for anything in particular right now, running as much as I do is serving a purpose. If anything it is helping me keep my sanity as we wait for the baby’s arrival. I’m sure those of you who have kids can understand the feeling.