Marathon feat for mother-of-two

PUBLISHED: 10:51 28 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:26 31 May 2010

Karen Mullins runs London Marathon.
Littleury.
March 25, 2008.
Photograph by Michael Boyton.
Pic shows: Karen with her running shoes.
Name: Karen Mullins.

Karen Mullins runs London Marathon. Littleury. March 25, 2008. Photograph by Michael Boyton. Pic shows: Karen with her running shoes. Name: Karen Mullins.

IN JUST over two weeks a woman will take on the challenge of a lifetime to raise money to fight one of the world s rarest lung diseases. In February last year Karen Mullins sister-in-law suffered a collapsed lung and was later diagnosed with an incurable

IN JUST over two weeks a woman will take on the challenge of a lifetime to raise money to fight one of the world's rarest lung diseases.

In February last year Karen Mullins' sister-in-law suffered a collapsed lung and was later diagnosed with an incurable disease know as LAM.

Mother-of-two Karen, from Littlebury, Saffron Walden, said: "It came as a great shock when we found out Julie had the disease.

"Her youngest son is the same age as mine - to think she might have a shortened life and not see them grow up is just awful."

Mrs Mullins, 45, will take part in the Flora London Marathon on Sunday April 13 to increase awareness about the disease and to raise money for the LAM Action charity.

Nearly at the end of her 16-week training course, Mrs Mullins went on her last long training run before the big day, on Saturday.

"The training has been going really well," she said. "I did a very good half-marathon in Milton Keynes on Sunday March 2 and ran a personal best time. I'm hoping to finish the London Marathon in under four hours.

"I train for about five days a week, with two outdoor runs and three days in the gym."

With a target of £1500, Mrs Mullins has raised nearly £1000 already and is hoping to beat her original target.

Sister-in-law Julie Mullins, 42, was diagnosed with a rare lung disease called Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) which only occurs in women. Affecting just one woman in 400,000, there are around 120 LAM patients in the UK.

The condition mainly affects the lungs, where it causes excessive growth of smooth muscle tissue which progressively erodes lung function.

"This is such a rare condition, it's vital to increase public awareness so the charity can raise money to fund medical research," said Mrs Mullins.

"Just because it's rare doesn't mean that the illness is any less life-shattering for LAM patients and their families."

The LAM Action charity provides information, support and encouragement for LAM patients and their families as well as raising money for research into the disease. For more information about the charity visit www.lamaction.org.

If you would like to sponsor Mrs Mullins visit her website www.justgiving.com/karensmarathon2008.

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