Picture of female athlete competing in race goes viral when man notices something off

It seemed like she was running a race like any other. But when one man noticed something off, a photo was snapped that instantly went viral. Sit down before you spot the detail that changes everything.


Emma Pallant-Browne is a celebrated athlete who used a photo of her, which some dubbed “unfortunate,” in order to spread a message about the female body and how extraordinary women are.

Among the rest, Emma won a silver medal in the World Long Distance Triathlon Championships in 2022, two medals (silver in 2017 and bronze in 2022) in the championship known as Ironman 70.3, and a gold medal at the European Championship.

Other than that, she has recently participated in the PTO Tour European Open in Ibiza, which took place a few days after she won the Dualthlon World Championship, and ended up on the fourth place.


While taking part in the latest competition in Ibiza, a photo of her taken by a professional photographer were uploaded on the official site of the event. The photo seemed a regular one until another contestant, Xavier Coppock, highlighted something he noticed which later became a huge topic of conversation.

Namely, Emma was competing in a blue and pink swimsuit, but there was also a red stain visible which she got because she had period during the race.

“Not the most flattering photo of Emma, surely they can crop it a little better,” Coppock wrote under the photo, trying to stand up for Emma. However, although she was flattered by his intention to protect her, Emma didn’t mind the photo because as she stated, women having their period while competing wasn’t anything unusual. Replying to Coppock’s comment, Emma explained that she had her period and although she used tampon, there were days when even the most absorbent one would not do the job for more than 3 hours.

A couple of days later, she posted the same photo on her Instagram account with the caption, “Celebrating the amazing women in sport and the equally amazing men who champion them. Humbled by the number of messages I’ve had from both men and women about the unglamorous reality of racing on your period.”

Further, Emma wrote, “I raced in a swimsuit because I over heat and pass out in hot races, on my period my body temp is also higher. I have a full length suit for the cooler races in dark colours but the light colours we were experimenting with for the cooling effect. It is dark at the bottom and at the back but my bike position has changed and now I roll more forward (lesson learnt for next years suit design).

“A lot of the photos you can’t see anything, pouring water over yourself at aid stations does the trick and if it doesn’t you end up with one photo like this but the idea to edit it means there is something wrong with it.
If you wrote to me saying 99% of the women you know would be mortified at this then that is exactly why I am sharing this, because there really is nothing wrong.”

She added, “Its natural and coming from eating issues as an endurance runner when I was growing up where I didn’t have my period, I now see it as beautiful.
So if you have a photo like this, save it, cherish it, remember how you performed on a tough day because one day you might just be able to help someone else with it.”

Speaking of her choice of outfit, she explained that wearing a swimsuit suits her best because she sweats a lot and it provides her with the most amount of safety and comfort when she competes.

“This is a women’s sport and the more barriers we can break, the better. After a long career, you end up with a photo like this, but the idea of editing it means there is something wrong with it. I share it because there’s really nothing wrong with it, it’s a natural thing,” she wrote.

“So if you have a photo like this, save it, cherish it, and remember how you performed on a tough day because one day you might just be able to help someone else with it,” the celebrated athlete concluded in her powerful message she extended to other women.

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