One of the stars of the New York Marathon, a race which draws competitors from all over the world, was a young mum who completed the course ... pregnant with twins!
Fellow runners and spectators clapped and cheered Laura Singleton, from Billington, when she set off from the start line wearing a T shirt with the slogan “Twins on board’’ on the front and “Caution, pregant with twins’’ on the back.
Laura said: “The response I received was absolutely awesome. People were looking at my T shirt with disbelief and shock and saying things like “Are you serious’ and “Oh My God’ but then they were clapping and cheering and taking photographs.
“Other runners were also coming up to me to ask if it was true that I was carrying twins.
“The respect and admiration they gave me was overwhelming.’’
Plucky Laura, who is already mum to Reece (13) Layton (10) nine-year-old Jenna and Caitlin who is eight, found out she was expecting just before she took part in the Berlin marathon at the end of September. She the discovered she was carrying twins on the day before her 33rd birthday on Wednesday, September 30th.
Laura, who has also tackled both the London and Manchester marathons this year aswell as a Tough Mudder event in Yorkshire, was thrilled at the news but also left in shock.
She said: “It was a shock to find out I was carrying twins but I still wanted to take part in the marathon but I knew it would be a completely different challenge altogether.’’
Laura, who got the all clear from medics to take part, walked and jogged the course of the New York marathon and completed it in a respectable seven hours, five minutes and five seconds.
And she was chuffed to learn she came around 48,000 out of around 80,000 runners.
She said: “At least I didn’t come last. I just listened to my body and while I did intend to walk the course I knew that would take forever so I did a bit of jogging too.’’
The idea to wear the T shirt warning people came from Laura’s children who were worried she may get bumped into by other runners.
But Laura admitted there was also another reason why she wanted to let people she was know she was expecting saying: “I have quite a bump and I didn’t want anyone to think I was just fat and sat around doing nothing.’’
After completing the marathon Laura was presented with a medal and two special medals for the twins who are due in May.
Laura said: “Three of us took part in the event and three of us finished it. This will be a great story to tell them as they are growing up.’’
Along with conquering a personal challenge, Laura has raised thousands of pounds for worthy causes that are close to her heart. She ran the London Marathon for the first time last year and raised £3,000 for Tofs, a charity for children who are unable to swallow because of the rare condition tracheo-oesophageael fistula (TOF). She started supporting the charity as her friend Kay Leech from Mellor has a daughter, Harriet, who suffers from the condition.
Laura also organised an 80 hour fancy dress spinning marathon at Oakhill Academy in Whalley which raised more than £800.
This year she has been raising money for a disable young people’s charity called Get Kids Going. It is a cause Laursa feels passionate about since she started her own road to fitness two years ago by shedding four stones and dropping from a size 20 to an eight. But now she is putting her feet up.
She said: “Life is going to be very busy when the twins arrive but me and the kids cannot wait.’’