HHO writer Emma Thomas ran Sunday’s Flora London Marathon to raise funds for the ILPH

Horse & Hound Online writer, Emma Thomas, ran the 22nd London Marathon in just over five hours and raised £1,000 for the International League for the Protection of Horses (ILPH).

Despite having her appendix removed only five weeks before the big day Emma was determined to run.

“I couldn’t believe it when the consultant said they were going to remove my appendix. I kept saying ‘but I’m supposed to be running the marathon’.”

Emma was in hospital for five days before spending a week recuperating at home. Two weeks later she re-started her training with a two-mile run before going down with a heavy cold.

“Everyone was telling me to give it a miss and do it next year, but I had spent so long preparing and collecting sponsorship there was no way I was missing it.”

Lynda Freebury from the ILPH said: “We are absolutely thrilled with Emma’s wonderful achievement, which was even more amazing because of her appendix operation. Well done Emma and thanks for your support.”

On the day

Emma started the marathon in group eight, crossing the start line 15mins and 31secs after the gun fired. Apart from one toilet stop she ran all the way to the 21-mile mark before walking.

It was an amazing atmosphere and a totally unique experience,” said Emma. “I felt fine until mile 18 but then it really started to hurt.

“I walked for the first time at mile 21, but then I saw my friends in the crowd, which gave me a boost and kept me going.”

Emma crossed the finish in just over five hours. Despite the pain, she reckons she will definitely run it again.

“I’m in agony but running for the ILPH was a privilege and if they ever need another runner they can count me in.”

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