As some of you know, I’m a runner, running almost exclusively on trails, and mainly in races of 50k (31 miles) and longer. As some others of you know, I was also diagnosed, to my surprise, as a type-1 (insulin dependent) diabetic just over two years ago. Surprisingly (to me), those two things ended up coming together to partially define who I am today. Even though I have to take insulin shots 4 times every day, and monitor my glucose levels to adjust the dosage on those shots, it hasn’t slowed my down. In fact, since my diagnosis I’ve set personal bests in every distance I’ve run.
That being said, the reason I’m bringing all this up now is that I’m running my first 100 mile race (Massanutten Mountain Trails, in Virginia) on May 12th. At this point, my goal is simply to finish the race before the time cut-off, but based on the training I’ve put in over the last 5 months, I’m also hoping to feel good doing it.
Now, I’ve never really been good at fundraising, but here I go! To coincide with my first 100 miler, I’ve set up a fundraising page for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). You don’t have to give now, you actually don’t have to give ever (see why I’m not a great fundraiser?) That being said, if you do have any funds that you’ve targeted towards donating for a good cause, this is a great cause, and one that I strongly believe in. Type-1 diabetes is hereditary, it cannot be controlled or eliminated through a change of diet or any other environmental factors – the body simply stops producing insulin, and without injections of synthetic insulin, sugars just build up in the body, causing all sorts of problems. While I’m fortunate enough to have a lifestyle that helps me keep my blood sugar levels low, many type-1 diabetics don’t have that opportunity and – as they say – insulin is NOT a cure.
As for type-1 diabetics who have run 100 mile races, I still can’t find a figure, but I can’t imagine more than 100 have ever done it, and I’d guess the number is actually much lower than that. Maybe 25 people? Ever? So help me raise awareness for this great cause, and thank you very much.
My fundraising website is located at http://jdrfevents.donordrive.com/campaign/dfgray
I promise I’ll post a race report on my blog after the race – whatever happens!