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On Saturday, the 25th of October, CrossFit Perpetua is hosting a charity event raising money for Diabetes UK. We thought we should tell you a little bit about Diabetes, specifically Type 1, and why we are doing this.

In January of 2013, at the age of 30, David Walters lost a stone in a week, he was drinking every sugar filled drink he could get his hands on, his vision was deteriorating, he was exhausted all the time, and going to bathroom every ten minutes. His fiancé, Laura, claimed he was just getting old, but after an urgent visit to the GP he was rushed to A&E; the doctor was worried that he was ketoacidoic (a state where the body starts to break down body tissue as an energy source, unable to utilise glucose in the blood stream, caused by a lack of insulin).

David was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and immediately put on an insulin drip. That was it, from that day forward, for the rest of his life, David has to take manufactured insulin. For the first year, he would inject himself 4 – 5 times a day, now he uses an pump. You’ll see him delivering insulin just before a WOD, or disconnecting the pump so the barbells don’t rip it out of him if they catch on the infusion set. The worst part though, other than the horrible stats below, is that David has to test his blood sugar frequently, more so when he’s exercising. David keeps his blood sugar control tight, which means he stabs himself in the finger and draws blood about 17 times day, “normal” people tend to test anywhere from 0 (they aren’t likely to be an exception to the stats, and will check out sooner than most) to 10 (the recommended number).

So, what is Type 1 Diabetes? In short, your body starts producing antibodies in response to some attack, this could be the flu, a cold, etc. The body mistakes the cells producing insulin as foreign and destroys them. When you no longer produce enough insulin, you’re a type 1 diabetic. Without insulin, glucose builds up in your blood stream and you start to destroy yourself. The smaller things go first, like the vessels in your eyes, you’re at much greater risk of a heart attack, stroke, and other auto immune diseases. Here are some stats:

·3.2 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes in the UK in 2013 (more than 400 people every day).

·10% of this number have type 1. Type 2 is a very different disease and is predominately caused by lifestyle (poor diet, lack of exercise, smoking, drinking).

·Obesity accounts for 80 – 85 % of the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

· 630,000 have undiagnosed diabetes and are at serious risk of death.

· 10% of the NHS’ budget is spent on diabetes; that’s £1 million an hour.

· A 30 year study published in 2012 found that those with type 1 diabetes had a life expectancy of 69 years.

It’s not all bad news. This charity event is to raise money for Diabetes UK, who, like many other charities, work to increase the awareness of diabetes, provide support, and campaign for change. Diabetes UK are constantly looking for new developments, edging closer and closer to better treatment, and maybe, one day, a cure.

Remember, if you’re doing a WOD with David, and you’re finding it tough, he’s probably also finding it tough (unless its burpees or push ups, which he loves), but he isn’t going to give up or stop. Like all type 1 diabetics, David struggles against a disease that prevents him from utilising the energy in his body that’s readily available to you on demand. He’s not going to let this disease beat him, he’s not going to say it’s too hard, he’s had a bad day, or it’s wet outside. He’s going to complete the workout, give everything he can, and do it all all over again the next day. Will you?

Come down on the 25th of October around 10:30. Show your support, take part (it’s open to everyone), donate to a worthwhile charity, and have an awesome time doing it.

You can donate by texting your donation to 70070 with the code CFPP47. Further information on diabetes can on the Diabetes UK website, http://www.diabetes.org.uk/.


Coach Rusty and the team at CFP

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