Speech and Language Therapist and Auditory Verbal therapy intern Emma Burton, is currently training to take on the London Marathon on Sunday 23 April 2017. Read about her journey below. 

I’ve never been a natural runner. I have attended the odd park run for a gentle 5km around the park. But the thought of taking on a half marathon, let alone a full marathon had always seemed ridiculous. And yet here I am, with 20 days to go until my first step of TWENTY SIX POINT TWO ridiculous miles. 

I hadn’t planned to run a marathon in 2017, it was more of a spur of the moment impulse. And it wasn’t until a few days later the realisation hit me that I really hadn’t thought things through. I mean seriously. How often do I run? What do I eat? What do you mean, I need to vaseline my feet?!

I’ve had eleven weeks to get my mind and body ready for one of the biggest physical challenges I have ever taken on. And I don’t think I would have made it without the support of my family, my friends, and the most insane and incredible community of runners I’ve somehow managed to encounter along the way. The thing everyone keeps telling me is that you’ve got to want it. You can only train your body so far but your mind is what will carry you those final six miles. 

So what drives me to get up and run when my alarm goes off at 5.30am on a dark, icy morning? To sleep in gym gear so I can roll out of bed and into my trainers to clock up the miles before work? Hill sprints, chaffing, muscle cramps, blisters upon blisters…

...Well it definitely doesn’t hurt that I can eat ANYTHING I want! Pancakes for dinner? Sure. Melted cheese over everything? You bet. 

But most importantly I am lucky enough to be one of the therapists working at AVUK, a charity that helps babies and young children with permanent hearing loss to listen and talk. We aim to enable parents to realise their dreams for their deaf children and empower them to help their children achieve their full potential. 

I have met so many inspiring families, some as they first join the programme and others as they 'graduate' and their children transitions to mainstream school. 

Unfortunately, at the moment, only 5% of the 7,200 deaf children who could benefit from accessing this programme are currently able to do so. 

I know any money I raise will go towards helping more families access this life changing therapy. 

Please visit my page for more information and give generously if you can. In return I can offer you hilarious photos of me falling across the finish line (or at least  I hope so!) and even the smallest donation will make a massive difference: