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Advice for people with diabetes and their families

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Running in memory of my Dad

Rachel is taking on the London Landmarks Half Marathon this March in memory of her Dad who passed away just over 12 months ago. Diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes over 10 years ago, Rachel's Dad has regular admissions to hospital with cellulitis, a proud man he didn't tell his family the extent of his health problems. He was eventually admitted to hospital with a suspected stroke and limited kidney function. After 17 days in hospital going through tube feeding and intensive care, Rachel's Dad passed away. 

Rachel Lennon 
Age: 34
Running the London Landmarks Half Marathon in memory of her father. 

"The two words on my dads's death certificate stood out for me - Diabetes and Obesity. From that moment, i knew they wouldn't be on mine."

Rachel's story

  • Her father was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes over 10 years ago
  • They lived over 100 miles apart so they didn't regularly see each other but kept in touch over the phone
  • Also has a younger brother and older sister
  • Rachel's dad had regular hospital admissions for cellulitis but was a proud man and didn't let his family know everything.
  • Rachel tested for diabetes during both pregnancies and is a Slimming World consultant, encouraging healthier lifestyle
  • Rachel's dad passed away just over 12 months after being admitted to hospital with a suspected stroke and limited kidney function
  • Since then, Rachel has raised money for Diabetes UK taking part in the London Bridges Challenge and now the London Landmarks Half Marathon
  • Wants to raise awareness of the health implications and health management of Type 2 diabetes. 

My dad 

My dad was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes around 10 years ago and, I admit, I never understood before the health implications this had on his health other than eating at regular intervals and eating healthily. We lived 100 miles away, so we didn't regularly pop round for a cuppa. But we would catch up on social media and on the phone. My 11 year old brother lived with my Dad and he would meet him from school and walk him home. They would do homework, dinner prep and quizzes together. 

"I know that weight plays a big factor in Type 2 diabetes"

Rachel's health 

I am a Slimming World Consultant so I know that weight plays a big factor in Type 2 Diabetes and have had so many members come along referred by their doctor over the years. They were diagnosed as 'pre-diabetic' and wanted to make some healthier choices in their diet and lifestyle. I myself have been tested in both pregnancies as well as last Summer and have managed to escape diagnosis. 

"He was a very proud man though and living so far away, I didn't tend to get told about everything with health which was frustrating."

Dad had regular hospital admissions with cellulitis. He was a very proud man though and living so far away, I didn't tend to get told about everything with his health which was frustrating. Dad was admitted to hospital with a suspected stroke and limited kidney function on my brother's 10th birthday. When I took the call, I had no idea this was the beginning of the end or that these issues would stem back to his diabetes and his poor management. After 17 days in hospital going through tube feeding and intensive care, my Dad passed away. The two words on his death certificate stood out for me, under cause: Diabetes and Obesity. From that moment, I knew they wouldn't be on mine.


Taking on challenges

If someone has said to me 18 months ago that I'd raise awareness and money for charity, I'd have laughed. I took on the Diabetes UK London Bridges Challenge in October 2018 with my sons. But I was the person who would run if a bear was chasing them, but not for fun. Yet here I am signing up for a half marathon with no more than a few 5k parkruns as experience. I'm not as far trained as I hoped to be with a knee injury slowing my progress. But I'm determined to finish even if I have to crawl. I feel confident that I'll do it because I'm stubborn. I'm looking forward to The London Landmarks Half Marathon with as much dread as excitement. 

"I'm determined to finish even if i have to crawl"

Raising awareness

By taking part, I want to raise awareness of the health management and health implications of Type 2 diabetes. I want the understanding to be there for family and friends and for diabetes to not be such a threat to lives. 

Find out more about our fundraising events 

 

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