Up Close: Utah Dad Runs Marathons While Spending Time With Kids

Nov 20, 2019, 7:38 PM | Updated: 7:40 pm
Benjamin Hooley said he wants to run a marathon each month and has been training with his kids in t...
Benjamin Hooley said he wants to run a marathon each month and has been training with his kids in tow.

LEHI, Utah — A Utah father has come up with a challenging plan to run a marathon each month this year while still spending quality time with his 3-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son.

“It was really almost out of desperation, cause I’m like I want to spend time with my kids I don’t want to go to work all day and then run all afternoon then send them to a baby sitter,” Benjamin Hooley said. “Kind of made me feel good that they were part of all this stuff rather than I was doing my own thing.”

Hooley started his running career in 2006. His first race was a 5K in 2009 and he ran an ultra-relay, marathon and triathlon in 2012. He has now run 10 marathons and 23 half marathons, with three of those marathons coming this year.

Overall, he has run almost 1,500 miles in 2019.

But to fulfill his goal of spending more time with the kids, he set out to run one marathon a month this year with his kids in tow. On his 37th birthday, he ran 37 miles with young day Gehrig and Emma. It took him seven hours, 14 minutes and 55 seconds — if you take out snack and playtime.

“This is definitely my version of family time with them,” Hooley said.

Benjamin Hooley said he wants to run a marathon each month and has been training with his kids in tow.

The Hooleys have encountered just about every animal you can find on a trail and played just about every game you can in a stroller during their runs.

“One game they created a couple of weeks ago they had imaginary fish they were catching. Then they were fighting over who was catching what fish. That was entertainment right there,” Hooley said. “I can’t imagine doing anything else. I could read stories to them at night but it’s a different bonding when they are rolling through mountains and doing stuff.”

When the kids need a break, Hooley stops at a playground or somewhere they can get out of the stroller and run around.

“It’s the happiest that I could ever be. They see my joy and they are making it their joy too and they are having fun,” he said.

Who knows what the future holds — Hooley said that maybe Gehrig and Emma will become marathon runners themselves one day.

“I’m thinking alright, are my kids going to remember this when they are older, as this was torcher for them and they are going to have some PTSD from sitting in the stroller? Or are they going to outgrow the stroller and become marathoners running alongside me,” Hooley said. “They haven’t said they’ve had a bad time yet.”

Hooley said he plans to run a marathon with the kids the day after Thanksgiving and then one more in December to accomplish his goal of running a marathon each month this year.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Up Close

(Becky Hansen, Smile Creations Portrait Studio, St. George, Utah)...
Angie Denison

Up Close with Shawn Bradley

Last year, NBA legend Shawn Bradley was hit by a car while riding his bicycle in St. George. The accident left him paralyzed from the shoulders down. In an exclusive visit, KSL returns to the crash site with Shawn and his wife.
5 months ago
(KSL TV)...
Dan Rascon, KSL TV

Up Close: Girls Wrestling Booming In Utah

Once a real shocker in high school sports, girls wrestling has becoming one of the most popular growing sports in the country. That’s why the season may be over but practice continues for many girls.
3 years ago
Albee Bostrom and Sissy McDade turned their love of thrift store shopping into a business: Thrift H...
Dan Rascon, KSL TV

Up Close: Young Entrepreneurs Turn Thrift Store Shopping Into Full-Time Business

A simple hobby of thrift store shopping has turned into a full-time business for a couple of young entrepreneurs in Utah County. They’ve now opened up their very own unique thrift store with a flash to the past. We are talking about the 1980s and 1990s era.
3 years ago
Courtney Kimball and her sister Kym Frey help women living in the slums of San Pedro Sula, Honduras...
Dan Rascon, KSL TV

Up Close: ‘One Common Thread’ Organization Helping Women In Poverty

Two Utah sisters - one now living in one of the most dangerous cities in the world - are helping to bring women out of poverty by teaching them a skill that’s giving them new hope.
3 years ago
A BYU project called the "Rheumatic Relief" project is helping to heal children's hearts and save h...
Dan Rascon, KSL TV

Up Close: BYU Project Tests Samoan Children For Heart Conditions

A BYU project tests Samoan children for heart conditions, helping to heal damaged hearts and save hundreds of lives.
3 years ago
Dan Rascon, KSL TV

Up Close: West Jordan Girl Sings Her Way Into National Spotlight

An eight-year-old girl from West Jordan has won an incredible award. She became the Grand Champion Vocalist of the year in the 25th annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza in San Antonio, Texas.
3 years ago

Sponsored Articles

vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Up Close: Utah Dad Runs Marathons While Spending Time With Kids