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Paula Radcliffe wants second child before 2012 Olympics

Paula Radcliffe

Family is a priority - Radcliffe

Paula Radcliffe says she will not wait until after the 2012 Olympics to have her second child - but insists she is still targeting a gold medal in London.

The 35-year-old gave birth to daughter Isla in January 2007 and would like to have another child next season.

"I haven't made any secret of the fact that that's what we would like to do," Radcliffe told BBC Sport.

"As a woman I have to plan time out, it's about compromise and trying to fit in everything you want to do."

Radcliffe was asked if the "ideal scenario" would be to have a second child within the next year, a period that includes the European Championships in Barcelona and the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

She replied: "It is definitely, if I was fortunate enough for things to work out that way, so fingers crossed."

Radcliffe returned to competitive action eight months after giving birth to Isla in 2007 and believes her body can withstand the pressures of childbirth and rigorous training for the 2012 Olympics as she targets the only major title missing from her illustrious career.

And she admitted that it was important to avoid her running becoming a cause of resentment.

I don't believe my body is anywhere near finished - mentally I'm definitely not

Paula Radcliffe

"I always saw myself as a mother and it was important to us [Radcliffe and husband Gary Lough] to fit that in" said the women's marathon world record holder speaking in Addis Ababa, where she was a guest of honour at the recent Great Ethiopian Run.

"I didn't want to get to a point where I would resent my running because it was putting off having children for longer.

"So that's the reason why I don't want to put off the second one until after 2012. I think now is the right time for Isla to have a sibling.

"I've always seen us with two children."

Radcliffe has endured a miserable 2009, undergoing surgery on her toe, forcing her to miss the London Marathon as well as the World Championships in Berlin.

She returned to action at the New York Marathon earlier this month, but her performance was hindered by tendinitis in the back of her left knee as she finished fourth behind two-time Olympic 10,000m champion Derartu Tulu.

Although she admitted to having considered retirement during her numerous recoveries this year, Radcliffe stressed her love of running has kept her motivated.

"This year was the first time that has ever happened," she said. "After Athens I never contemplated it for a second or suffering the stress fracture before the Beijing Olympics.


"But this year is the first where little doubts crept in. But my love of running comes through and carries me through.

"As I've got my foot stronger after the operation, and I've seen how much healthier it is than this time last year, I don't have to protect it and ice it after every run, which really encourages me.

"I don't believe my body is anywhere near finished - mentally I'm definitely not. If I didn't have the love of what I'm doing, then I would have retired.

"I want to keep going as long as I can. And with 2012 up there, like a carrot, that's my next big target.

"I really want to go to an Olympics, especially in my home country, and give 100%."

see also
Injured Radcliffe vows to race on
02 Nov 09 |  Athletics
Radcliffe falls short in New York
01 Nov 09 |  Athletics
Woods takes New York second again
01 Nov 09 |  Disability Sport
Radcliffe's New York Marathon tips
29 Oct 09 |  Athletics
Radcliffe pulls out of marathon
20 Aug 09 |  Athletics
Life without Paula
08 Oct 09 |  Athletics
Athletics on the BBC
21 Apr 11 |  Athletics

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