Paula Radcliffe is adamant she can continue her career for at least six years and challenge for the 2012 Olympic marathon title once she has settled into the routine of motherhood.
T he world marathon record-holder announced her pregnancy yesterday but believes the birth of her first child next January will motivate her to run in the London Games.
But Radcliffe, even before the world's biggest sporting occasion is hosted for only the second time on British soil, has other major objectives along the way.
The 32-year-old is targeting the World Championships in Osaka next year.
"I haven't decided if I will definitely do the marathon - it could be the 10km," said Radcliffe, who seven years ago won a silver medal in the 25-lap track race.
A year later Radcliffe will attempt to atone for the only marathon defeat she has ever suffered in her career, by chasing the gold medal at the 2008 Olympics in China.
"Beijing is my long-term goal for the marathon," said Radcliffe, whose top priority has always been to make amends for dropping out at the last Games in Athens.
Then Radcliffe intends to continue to cope with the stresses of being a mum and world class performer which includes lots of travelling, leading into the London Games.
"I would like to be part of the British team. I'm not sure what my chances of winning will be there - but Carlos Lopez was 38 when he won his title," she said of the 1984 Portuguese men's champion in Los Angeles.
Radcliffe will not defend her European 10,000m crown next month in Gothenburg. She said: "I'll be over four months pregnant by then and do not want to take any risks.
"First and foremost it is important the baby is born healthy."
Now recovered from the foot injury which earlier this year prevented her taking part in the Commonwealth Games in March and the following month's Flora London Marathon, she plans a few low-profile races.
"It's coming along perfectly and there have been no illeffects," she said.