Tough challenges for Bedford woman help research into diabetes

Vicky Owens

A Bedford woman took on two tough running challenges at the weekend to raise money for Diabetes UK.

Vicky Owens has lived with Type 1 diabetes for 38 years and is keen to keep as fit and active as possible and also to support the vital research the charity funds every year.

Her ambitious plan saw her take on the Bedford Twilight 10K run on Saturday, September 1, and the following day she laced up her trainers again to join her fellow runners for the Bedford Half Marathon.

Vicky, 40, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when she was two years old and says no-one knows how difficult it is to live with the condition day in day out.

She said: “I ran for Diabetes UK as they are an awesome charity and want to give something back and help them fund their vital work.”

People with Type 1 diabetes cannot produce insulin. No one knows exactly what causes it, but it’s not to do with being overweight and it isn’t currently preventable. If not managed well, it can lead to devastating complications, including blindness, lower limb amputation, kidney failure and stroke. The condition is treated by daily insulin doses – taken either by injections or via an insulin pump. It is also recommended to follow a healthy diet and take regular physical activity.

Vicky said: “I’m hoping that one day we can find a cure for this really serious and complex condition. But I also want to support the research and steps forward in technology, support and care which are happening now and have the potential to be life-changing.

“In fact the reason I was so confident to run is because I use Flash Glucose Monitoring technology. Flash continuously records and stores my glucose readings and I can easily check it using my sensor. It drastically reduces the number of finger pricks I have to do every day to monitor my blood glucose levels.

“The numerous daily finger prick testing of my blood has left my fingers very sore and it restricted my running, but I now feel free to run safely.”

Teresa Strange, Diabetes UK Eastern Fundraiser, said: “We’re really grateful to Vicky for supporting our work to fund ground-breaking research, care services and campaigns that can change the lives of those living with diabetes.

“She took on two amazing challenges to not only help keep herself healthy, but raise money which is vital in the fight against diabetes.”

To sponsor Vicky visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/victoria-owens3

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