People always ask me, why run for Diabetes UK. The answer to that is simple. Although I don't suffer from Diabetes my sister however does. Diabetes UK is a charity very close to my heart as my sister has suffered with Type 1 diabetes since the age of 5. She is now 37. For Julie, to be diagnosed with diabetes at such a young age, had a huge impact on her childhood and on our daily family life. Julie has been insulin dependent since her diagnosis, and has had to cope with injecting herself up to 4 times a day. In her younger years she found her diabetes really hard to keep under control and from the stories my family have shared with me, I don’t want to see other kids going through the same as what my sister went through. She never has any days off from her condition, she constantly has to manage and monitor it and especially on Christmas Day when she was young, it was extremely difficult for her and my mum! However, her diabetes is more manageable now as improvement in treatment and support has improved over the last 20 years. I know this is partly down to the fantastic work that Diabetes UK has done in funding millions of pounds of research into the condition and treatment. I read a quote on the Diabetes UK website which was “Although diabetes cannot yet be cured it can be managed very successfully. This is likely to involve lifestyle changes that will have enormous health benefits and allow a person to continue their normal day-to-day life.” And this statement is so true. Diabetes doesn’t stop your life, you just have to live it in a different way by managing your condition.
By taking part in events across the country it will allow me to raise awareness of the condition itself, but also the brilliant work which the charity does on behalf of people living with diabetes and their families. I really hope by raising awareness of diabetes that one day someone will read or hear about my story, and this will in turn inspire them too!
My goal for the next year is to complete the London marathon 2014 (providing I get a golden bond place) and then conquer the Belfast marathon 2014, just two weeks later! I also plan to complete three to four half marathons before April 2014, which are all in aid of raising funds for Diabetes UK. I have my first half marathon in Belfast this year in September and I am already looking forward to wearing the Diabetes UK running vest.
Training for 26.2...Training for the 'dreaded' 26.2 is well under way.
I try to vary my training as much as possible including short distance runs, speed/sprints sessions, gym sessions, bike sessions and fartlek runs. Over the past few months I have been concentrating on a lot of speed work and short distance runs but with the Belfast half marathon fast approaching I have now started to add long runs into my training plan. Since I have started back into training I have managed to get my long runs up to the ten mile marker. As much as I love a short fast distance run there is no better feeling than putting the head phones in and heading off for a long slow distance run. I find that training with someone else really does improve your performance in every session.
Over the coming weeks I will be sharing with you a break down of my weekly training and diet to give you an insight of the efforts it takes to get fit for a marathon.
You don't have to suffer from Diabetes to go the extra mile to help such a worthy charity.
Until then, keep running...