A nursing assistant and Guinness World Record holder has just run her 15th consecutive London Marathon.
Eileen Naughton, who works on the trauma ward at John Radcliffe Hospital, ran this year’s London Marathon to raise money for Children with Cancer UK, a charity dedicated to raising money for research and providing care for children with cancer and their families.
For the last 12 years Miss Naughton has run the marathon for Children with Cancer, and in the three years prior she ran for the Meningitis Trust, the Children’s Trust and Cancer Research.
The runner, from Didcot, finished the marathon in three hours and 59 minutes, and so far has raised over £650 for Children with Cancer.
In her 15 years of taking part in marathons she has raised £30,000 for charity.
She said: “The marathon was brilliant. I loved it.
“I had my name on my top and the crowd were shouting my name, they were amazing.
“I really wanted to take a photo of them, but I was worried I’d trip over.
“It wasn’t my quickest marathon, but I had a big race in August – the Centurion Ultramarathon – which I had to prepare for by learning to run slowly over a much longer distance.
“It took a little while to get used to running faster again.
“Next up is the Oxford half marathon, which I’m running to raise money for Cruse Bereavement Care.
“I lost my mum to cancer in 2018, so I try to do some running for bereavement charities too.”
Miss Naughton has taken part in marathons all over the world, including Rome, Barcelona, Dublin and Milan.
She trains with Didcot runners on Tuesday and Thursday nights, and typically runs on weekends too.
She said: “I just love running. I try to fit it in around work as much as possible.
“Working at the hospital I end up doing nine or 10 miles on my feet every day too, the ward I’m on is very busy.
“I even got given a Guinness World Record for running the fastest marathon whilst wearing a hospital gown.”
The multiple-marathon finisher said she first got into running at the time the new children’s hospital was being built in Oxford.
She participated in the 5k fun run, and after completing it she was hooked.
When asked what keep her motivated to run, Miss Naughton said: “When I went to collect my number from my chosen charity at the marathon, they gave me a bead to put on my shoelace.
“They called it a bead of courage. When I finished the race, they took the bead, put it in an envelope and sent it to the children they support as a way of ‘passing on courage’ during their difficult time.”
This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.
Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.
Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1
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