Woman Runs London Marathon Without Tampon to Spread Message

kiran gandhiTwenty-six-year-old Kiran Gandhi had been training for the London Marathon for a year. And on the day of the 26.2 mile race, she got her period. Running with a tampon that long wasn't an option, and a maxi pad could prove difficult or cause chafing, but there was no way Kiran was going to miss the race because of menstrual blood. So she ran. Without anything. And in doing so, she sent an incredible message.


She also ran for breast cancer awareness. That was her first message. But having her period added more purpose to her run. She told Cosmopolitan magazine:

It's more about owning your own comfort level and being confident in your own skin to do what you need to do to accomplish something. Really making it about yourself instead of about other people. For me, it was a bit of a metaphor. I was like, Running a marathon is a very, very big stretch for me. I need to do whatever it takes to get myself to the end of that line. We were running for a greater cause, we were running for breast cancer. When you have that much support, you want to do a good job. That was really part of it — I'm with two of the best, most important women in my life. They stayed with me the whole time. I just wanted it to not matter. But it does matter in our society, right? If it didn't, everyone would be bleeding freely all the time, but instead we have to cover it up.

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Kiran, who was M.I.A.'s drummer and has a Harvard MBA, also said, "I ran with blood dripping down my legs for sisters who don't have access to tampons and sisters who, despite cramping and pain, hide it away and pretend like it doesn't exist."

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We overcome so much and we shouldn't let our periods stop us from doing something we worked hard to do. We should look at Kiran with admirable eyes. She did it! She ran through the pain, the discomfort, and accomplished a goal. Seeing period blood shouldn't be a big deal for anyone. We should not be shamed. It's a beautiful thing that we bleed, it's part of our bodies, our bodies that are able to create life. We are women, powerful, beautiful women. And menstruating is just one (beautiful and yet painful) part of who we are.

Thank you for running freely, Kiran.


Image via kirangandhi/Instagram

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