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Keeping active in good company to remember a work colleague

Richard Tuck, who has Type 1 diabetes, takes part in annual work challenges to keep fit and raise money for Diabetes UK.

After being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 1983 at the age of 12 I have been faced with all the challenges that this condition brings whilst continuing to live a normal life. There have been many testing times to face whilst keeping the awareness of controlling a condition which long term could have devastating consequences for myself and all who are close to me.

Currently I run on the standard 3 x Novarapid and 1 x Lantus injections per day with annual HBC1 readings of between 6.5 and 7. With this in mind here’s a brief account of what has helped me as an individual over the last 33 years and how life isn’t so bad dealing with Type 1 diabetes.

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Employees from Derbyshire company Sapa Profiles on the summit of Kinder Scout - in a challenge to raise money in memory of a colleague with diabetes

During my school days in the early 1980’s a teacher who also had Type 1 told me one thing which has stayed with me to this present day. He said “Keep active and it will help”. Now at the age of 45 I can honestly say how right he was. Throughout my life I have attended the gym two to three times a week and have taken up running with a consistent 5 to 10k distance for most sessions, however this statement really came to light when the company that I have worked for many years started to organise annual challenges in 2012. 

The first was the National 3 Peaks Challenge and it was the catalyst for many wonderful things including regular hikes throughout the Peak District, 26 miles through the Yorkshire 3 peaks, North side of Ben Nevis, Crib Goch/Snowdon...the list is endless.

New challenge

We completed our latest annual challenge in July 2016 - a 70 mile cycle ride - including a 10 mile hike up Kinder Scout. It was amazing. The team did so well in completing the challenge through some very difficult weather conditions. With offline donations to be collected it certainly looks like we will achieve over £2,000.

We agreed to choose the charity Diabetes UK for the loss of a work colleague who lived with this condition and to show through my experience of how this doesn’t have to stop anyone with Diabetes living a healthy normal life. With the support of Chesterfield hospital, Ashgate Medical Centre, family and great friends I have and continue to believe with the right focus, control and determination anything is achievable no matter what life brings.

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