‘Strong not skinny’ Amanda Byram shares her top fitness tips


January is long gone, but some of us have managed to hold on to our fitness aspirations from the month of good intentions. 

Joining the #IrishFitFam can be intimidating, but once you make the first steps on your fitness journey, you'll never want to look back. 

Amanda Byram, host of Dancing With The Stars, has always been into her fitness, but only recently has the TV presenter reconsidered running as part of her routine. 


A post shared by Amanda Byram (@amandabyram) on

This is thanks to her involvement with the Vhi Women's Marathon, which is celebrating its 35th year.

The Clontarf native is heading up the marathon as an ambassador, and the fitness advocate chatted about her reasons for joining the cause. 

"My main passion is health and fitness, I've got my PT certificate and I've studied nutrition, and I have an active wear range coming out, so for me it was of the utmost importance," she said. 

"I like to empower women through fitness, I'm all about being strong not skinny, and I'm all about women getting together to train because it can be quite intimidating a lot of the time."

In regards to Amanda's training for the marathon, she admits that she hasn't quite gotten around to starting yet, but she will be following the 14 week plans that are kicking off on the VHI website this week.

While the TV presenter is mad about fitness, she's a bit of a novice when it comes to training for a marathon. 

"I've given myself this time, the 14 weeks in the run up to it to really focus on it, because I used to run a long time ago but then I hurt my knees and gave it up, and I've been wanting to get back into it for so long."


A post shared by Amanda Byram (@amandabyram) on

When asked about her personal techniques for getting motivated to train, Amanda cited a good mental attitude as being one of the most important aspects. 

"There's a lot of mental techniques that have to happen, I think it's about wanting to not needing to, that's what you always have to tell yourself is that you want to do it. and when you do it for pleasure it becomes less of a chore," she advised. 

"Also, when I was in my late thirties and turning forty I thought 'I've really got to make an effort now if I want to be fit and healthy and strong into my fifties and my sixties and my seventies' so I've got to start now."

"I spent so long trying to be skinny because I thought that's what healthy was all about, I thought 'I wont eat this' or 'I'l eat low fat this' and all the rest of it, and all these faddy diets and I was just finding that I didn't have any energy and I wasn't strong. I was thin but I wasn't strong," she admitted. 

Amanda, who plans to run the marathon for the Down Syndrome Centre in Sandyford, also credited an achievable and steady pace as being the key to training successfully. 

"For me it's all about starting slowly, and building incrementally, I think that rather than going straight into it, you know, a week before the mini marathon an then get an injury and then not be able to do it so its about incorporating it into your daily life, and it's not for a small period of time either, it's a lifestyle."

"I'm going to take it really really slowly and probably do one or two kilometers per day or something like that, and build up strength.

"This isn't just about the run or the walk, it's alo about strength from within and getting that mind set that you can do this, we'll all do this together."

"On the day that's in it, there could be up to 35,000 women running, walking, crawling, jogging, whatever they might be doing and that in itself is reason to get from Fitzwilliam square to Baggot Street, it's such a buzz."

"Some of us are doing it for charities, others are doing it to get a personal best, so it's fun combined with sport combined with a charitable event." 

While we're more aquainted with the a Netflix marathon than an actual marathon, we'll be signing up to get involved in the biggest all-women's event of its kind in the world.

The first Women’s Mini Marathon kicked off in Dublin in 1983 with 9,000 entrants, and it has grown in popularity year on year, raising over €200,000,000 for charity since it first began. 

The event will see women make their way through Dublin city on Bank Holiday Monday, 5 June 2017, and registration is currently open. 

Dust off those gym runners, ladies.