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Changing Diabetes with Team Novo Nordisk

December 4th 2012 marked an exciting day for the world of diabetes and my new team, Team Novo Nordisk (formally Team Type 1).

Team Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk today announced a unique partnership to form Team Novo Nordisk, a global sports team with more than 100 cyclists, triathletes and runners who all have diabetes, spearheaded by the world’s first all-diabetes pro-cycling team.

Team Novo Nordisk will use life experiences and competitiveness to motivate people affected by diabetes. Throughout 2013, these athletes will compete in more than 500 sporting competitions around the world. The men’s pro-cycling team will compete in races such as the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, the Tour of Britain and the Paris-Tours, with the ultimate goal of joining the Tour de France.

December 4th 2012 – Novo Nordisk Press Conference in Denmark; Jakob Riis and Phil Southerland

“As part of our long-standing Changing Diabetes program, this partnership provides a tremendous opportunity to raise awareness, and educate, empower and inspire people with diabetes,” says Jakob Riis, senior vice president, Global Marketing and Global Medical Affairs, Novo Nordisk. “This is yet another way Novo Nordisk is striving to create more opportunities to live well with diabetes.”

Phil Southerland founded what was known as “Team Type 1” in 2005 and included riders and athletes with and without diabetes until this year. The new Team Novo Nordisk will only comprise of athletes who have diabetes and will continue to grow the team mission “to instill hope and inspiration for people around the world affected by diabetes.”

“As Team Novo Nordisk we want to show the world what is possible with great diabetes control. Between us, Team Novo Nordisk has over 1,000 diagnosed years of diabetes with no complications and we stand for what life with diabetes can be like,” Southerland says. “Exercise is that billion dollar drug that nobody ever gets prescribed, and in my experience is the best of them all. With appropriate diet, exercise, treatment and technology, anyone with diabetes can achieve their dreams.”

SO proud to be one of the hundred team athletes!

Like us at www.facebook.com/TeamNovoNordisk

Follow us at @TeamNovoNordisk

Website will be live on January 1 2013 www.teamnovonordisk.com

About Diabetes

Today, 371 million people are living with diabetes.[1] Changing Diabetes® is Novo Nordisk’s global commitment to improve conditions for the millions of people who live with diabetes around the world today, and those who are at risk of developing diabetes tomorrow. It is a global advocacy and partner platform which advocates for the prevention and early detection of diabetes, as well as improved treatment, care and health outcomes.

Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with 89 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. The company also has leading positions within hemophilia care, growth hormone therapy and hormone replacement therapy. For more information, visit  novonordisk-us.com.

Gotta Run with Will

In September, I was honored to be asked by Will Sanchez to be on his show; ‘Gotta Run With Will’. Previous guests have included some local celebrities of the NYC running scene; Nicole Sin Quee, Francis Laros, Deanna Culbreath, Jonathan Cane and Terence Gerchberg. I had a great time being his guest discussing my running resume, managing diabetes and of course the Leadville 100 in honor of my Uncle Dave!

Will is a true part of NYC running. He has been a member of New York Road Runners since 2003, worked as a mentor with Team in Training (Leukemia and Lymphoma Research) and attends the famous NYC Run Club; where I have met 99% of my New York friends! Thank you Will and the team at Gotta Run with Will.

 

In The (Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center) News…

The Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center have just released the September e-newsletter and look who’s the main feature; your rundiabetes CEO Stephen England! Credit goes out to Troy Finn, Assistant Vice President for Development at NBDC and Michele Hoos, Communications Manager for Columbia University Medical Center who interviewed me and put this all together.

The article, click here; http://www.nbdiabetes.org/?p=3345 highlights different parts of my life with diabetes; early diagnosis struggles with the combination of athletics and diabetes, searching for the right endocrinologist in New York, my recent 100 mile challenge at Leadville and my future race goals. I hope you like it.

I will be seeing my Naomi Berrie team next week for my quarterly appointment before I head out to the mid-west for my next race; the Chicago Marathon on October 7th where I hope to PR!

1Run…Across America!

My luck was sure with me in the middle of August. Not only was I able to complete the Leadville Trail 100 but I was also fortunate enough to meet Doug Masiuk of 1Run at the award ceremony.

Doug is on a 5-month journey running across the country to create diabetes awareness. Like me, he is a normal guy who just happens to live with type 1 diabetes. The coolest thing about his challenge is that he will be the first type 1 to ever complete this amazing and inspiring endurance challenge. This is Doug’s story;

Doug is running 3000 miles from coast to coast to promote diabetes awareness

Doug Masiuk & 1Run

1Run formed out of Doug’s frustration with the diabetes epidemic that continues to grow nationally and globally.

He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of three. Doug learned the hard way that you either own it (diabetes) or it will own you. His journey to better health and managing this disease began in 2008, when he put on a pair of sneakers and ran across a school parking lot—then collapsed. The next day he ran a little further.

It all started with one step, one run. Diabetes, one of the fastest growing chronic illnesses in the country, is manageable and in regards to type 2 diabetes can be prevented if people make healthy choices. Diabetes can have devastating effects for one’s quality of life and the healthcare system. Families supporting a loved one face financial hardship. These consequences can be dramatically reduced if people are willing to change what they eat and how often they move.

The mission if 1Run is to show those living with diabetes that they never have to use the condition as an excuse not to do amazing things. To inspire healthy lifestyle choices among diabetics and pre-diabetics.

I sat down at the Leadville Trail 100 awards ceremony and saw Doug only a few seats away. I had never met him, only spoken to him on the phone a few days earlier (when we tried to meet up at Glenwood Springs).

Diabetes and running – two great subjects to talk about!

We were both so pleased to meet each other, a mutual respect and understanding for what I had just achieved and what he was in the middle of achieving. Doug enthusiastically asked me “How was it?! How do you feel? How are you awake?!” He didn’t need to ask me “Did I finish?” because he had been tracking my progress via the internet for the last day.
We spoke about blood glucose levels during the run, adjusting basal percentages,  carbohydrate choices, A1C’s. We were two diabetics ‘talking shop’. Doug seemed so inspired by my 100 mile journey (or was it that I was standing up!) which I found modestly strange considering, here was a guy running every day from San Francisco to New York, some 3000 miles! His reply “Well, I’ve got as long as I want to do it, you only had 30 hours and no oxygen!”

Doug in Nevada. If his GPS watch breaks, he can always use road signs!

I asked Doug what inspired him to take on this challenge. I had thought he would mention being the first type 1 to accomplish this feat. Quite the contrary, his main focus seemed to want to reach out to the more common form of diabetes,   the type 2 diabetic. “Because diabetes is a huge problem, things need to change. Every 5 seconds, someone in the world is diagnosed with diabetes be it type 1 or type 2. I’m running to tell those who are overweight, inactive, basically people who are pre-diabetic, or have a history of diabetes in their families that it is never too late to change, change how you live your life”.

Doug added “In this country and around the world we are entering an era in which diabetes is an epidemic; a period in history when the number of people with diabetes is projected to double in the next 20 years. It has gotten this bad. So I’m speaking with my feet, my 1Run”.

Doug Masiuk and Stephen England; 3000 miles + 100 miles. Diabetes doesn’t stop us, it fuels us!

Doug meets with doctors, children and their families as well as the local media every where he goes. He is currently in Boulder, CO and plans on hitting the east coast in November. I can’t wait to meet him there!

Doug Masiuk

You can follow Doug at the following links

Please consider a donation to Doug and 1Run!

 

 

“Not Dead Yet” by Phil Southerland

When two great books came out on the same day (as so happened on June 5, 2012), I had a decision to make. My choices were between one of the ultra running gods, someone I have been fortunate to get to know the last year; Scott Jurek, with his first book ‘Eat & Run‘ or a new name to me, Phil Southerland with an intriguing title.

An inspiring read on how to grab diabetes by the handle bars!

Not Dead Yet‘ is a tongue in cheek reference to the doctor who infamously explained that Phil would be lucky to make it to age 25 when he diagnosed him as diabetic at only seven-month old. Now 28, he is alive and more than well. He is in many people’s eyes regarded as a diabetic icon. The book explains his inspiring life story of how he took control of diabetes (initially with his Mom’s help) and then how he used his “gift from God” as described by Phil to inspire diabetics the world over.

To any runner that knows me, they were probably shocked to hear I put Scott on the bookcase and made him wait. I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t do so in real life! (I very recently got up on at 4am to run with him around Manhattan and then went back after work to run a few more miles with him, ironically for his book launch).

My decision to pick an athletic diabetic I had never heard of over Scott proved to me how seriously I now take my diabetes. This mindset has not always been the case. Years before I previously shoved it in the back of my brain somewhere and carried on going as normal. Call it naive, rebellious or plain stupid. Yes, it was all of these and many other diabetics have done this only to find out it gets you nowhere. At some point for me, the switch just came on and the realization that this can be controlled. Today I hold my head up high and realize Phil and I aren’t too different. Diabetes is not an excuse not to do something, it’s an excuse to do something which Phil clearly demonstrates from his huge achievements.

But I digressed. Back to the start. When Phil was rushed to hospital as a baby, he had lost ten pounds in a week, his body was limp and his breathing slowed. He was displaying the youngest case of diabetes on record in the world at that time. He beat all odds and led an active childhood, first through racket ball, then cycling. His passion and talent for cycling made him a pro but his career was formed when he met another pro cyclist, Joe Eldridge, another type 1 diabetic. Their friendship grew although they managed their diabetes in different ways. Phil; testing constantly and changing dosages. Joe; laid back with a few tests and a few guesses for how much insulin to inject (guess which one I was). Together they formed a company of diabetic athletes only called Team Type 1, and their opening event was a cycling relay across the country known as the ‘Race Across America‘. They didn’t win the first year but they did the second and a few more times since! Phil now manages a world-class cycling team in TT1, changing the way the world views diabetes and its so-called limitations on life. In essence, he is doing the equivalent of what Lance Armstrong is doing for cancer.

Team Type 1 Pro Cycling

Blindness, kidney failure and death were all predicted for him by age twenty-five. He is not only alive and well but as the founder of Team Type 1, he and his team of championship cyclists (as well as runners and triathletes) have become health and fitness role models for people the world over.

The most exciting news from TT1 is their likely invite to next years biggest cycling event, the Tour de France in 2013! Phil Southerland is an inspiration to those who live and struggle with diabetes as well as any individual who faces seemingly insurmountable challenges. His diabetes control has labeled him as the “world’s number one diabetic!”. His A1C (a 3-month average glucose reading) is 5.1. To put this into context, a reading below 6.0 is for non-diabetics!

I will not pretend I have control anything like Phil (or Joe; his is 5.4) but my goal is to ‘strive for 6.5’ before the end of the year. ‘Strive for 6.5‘ is the Team Type 1 athletes motto. Nothing is impossible, Phil’s life story proves that over and over again with every page you turn. A great read! Buy it here;

http://www.amazon.com/Not-Dead-Yet-Diagnosis-Dominance/dp/0312610238

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