Caroline running the London Marathon for War Child in 2017.

12 marathons and counting

Running one marathon is impressive, but for Caroline one wasn't enough. She told us how it feels to be a 12-time marathon runner, raising more than £30,000 for War Child.

The first marathon 

"I've always loved running, but I'd only done 2 half-marathons before my first full marathon in 2014. On a commute to work one morning I read about War Child and thought they sounded like a fantastic and unique charity. I emailed their fundraising team to see if they had any places for the London Marathon." 

Fingers crossed.  

I knew this was going to be the start of something amazing.

"Katie Johnson - War Child's Head of Individual Giving - got back to me with an application form. She then sent me one of the best emails I've ever received. I had got a place. I was at work and had to take myself away from my desk to let it all sink in. I knew this was going to be the start of something amazing." 


Caroline's covered more than 300 miles for children affected by war. Credit: War Child UK
War Child UK

Step by step, donation by donation. Caroline's training got off to a bumpy start.

"I lived in East London and loved waking up early to run around the canals, Victoria Park and the Thames. But soon I'd injured my right foot so took a break from the running and joined a gym. I kept my fitness up with spin classes and weight classes which really helped with training and the all-round strength required for running a marathon."

These top tips kept me motivated, why not try them yourself?

  1. Get your kit ready the night before. 
  2. Prepare a delicious breakfast for after training runs. 
  3. Change your route regularly so you don't get bored. 
  4. Alternate between loop runs, hill training and shorter runs. 
  5. Try other forms of training like weight classes, yoga and Pilates. 

"War Child were fantastic at keeping in touch throughout training and fundraising. I arranged a quiz, raffle and auction at a local village hall. Lots of family and friends attended. 

We managed to sell out the event and raise an amazing £2,000.  

I liked the fact that War Child made the event a very personal and special experience. It has remained that way all the way through my running and fundraising for them.

It really helps to run for a cause you care about. It's true what they say about running a marathon being a mental battle. It really helps to run for a cause you care about, as this consumes a lot of your thoughts whilst you run. 

Belief in the cause gives you the strength and motivation you need when the joints are giving up.  

The heart and mind is what pulls you over that finish line." 


After doing the London Marathon in 2014, She did the Hackney Half Marathon for War Child that same year. She has since run 11 more marathons, 12 in total, including: 

  • London 6 times 
  • Stockholm 
  • New York 
  • Tokyo 
  • Amsterdam 
  • Berlin 
  • Chicago 

"Every single one was completed wearing the War Child vest and fundraising for this amazing and vital cause. 

I've loved each marathon for different reasons. London is home ground and the support is terrific. 

Tokyo and New York were places I'd always wanted to visit." 

Caroline's completed an amazing 12 marathons in aid of children affected by war and she's got the medals to prove it.

"I could not do this without the stupendous support from my family and friends. They've helped so much in making the events a huge success and have joined me to cheer me on whilst I run the marathons. My dad and I have arranged 4 charity golf days for War Child with a dinner, raffle and auction and each has been a huge success. Our total raised since 2014 is just over £30,000. It has not been hard to convince people to donate when War Child's work is so important and its staff are passionate and hardworking. I look forward to running in more wonderful places, raising awareness and lots of cash for War Child in the years to come."