The athletes among us.

The fact is, I have a number of Champion Athlete With Diabetes medal winners to talk about. Somehow, I got sidetracked and haven’t talked about it for a while.

Then I received a couple of e-mails in the past week about a couple of athletes who are growing, learning, and reaching their athletic goals while hauling diabetes around with them everywhere they go. Those people are fantastic, and they make me want to be like them.

If you live with diabetes, or someone close to you lives with diabetes, you know it’s hard. Sometimes, diabetes is a needy, clinging thing that requires constant attention. If you can deal with that and are still motivated enough to chase your athletic dreams, I am in awe of you and your achievements.

Previous medal winners have come from far and wide: as close to me as Northern Virginia, as far away as Trinidad, and also New Zealand. And those medal winners have minted their medals in a variety of ways: half marathons, basketball, curling, lifeguard competition, and so much more. We’ve given away over 30 medals, and I still get pumped every time I read a new e-mail from a D-athlete.

Every athlete’s story is a unique one, but they all leave me with the same feeling. The feeling that they are greater than the medals they wear. It’s not an overstatement to say they are inspirational. It’s not too much to call them heroes.
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So let’s raise a toast to our wonderful athletes. And if you are conquering diabetes at the same time you’re conquering your competition, I have a medal just like the one above for you too. Here’s what you do to get one:
 
 
1. The athlete receiving the award must be living with diabetes.

2. The athletic event must have taken place in the last six months. For now, we’re going with a pretty loose interpretation of the word “event”. If you feel you’ve accomplished something important to you, that’s an event. ‘Nuf said.

3. Send me an e-mail at champswithdiabetes@gmail.com. Tell me your name, name of the athlete (it’s okay if it’s you), and your address (gotta know where to send the medal). Most important, tell me what athletic goal was accomplished, and when. Extra points if you tell me how you felt accomplishing the goal. Full disclosure: I reserve the right to use your testimonial here, on Twitter, and on Facebook. I will not use your name if you don’t want me to. As always, I will never share private information.

4. When you receive your medal, it would be great if you post a photo of it around the athlete’s neck. You can send a Tweet to @ChampsWithD (hashtag: #champdathletes) or post it on the Champion Athletes With Diabetes Facebook Page.
 
 
I salute you, Champion D-Athletes. It takes a rather large amount of courage to compete, or maintain an exercise routine. Heck, sometimes, it’s everything we can do just to climb the stairs. Getting out of your comfort zone and taking that brave step is something that should be recognized and rewarded.

If it’s a big deal to you, it’s a big deal to me too. I want to support you, or support the Athlete With Diabetes in your life. Don’t wait… send me an e-mail for your award. There are plenty more where these came from.
 

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