Whether you’re stumbling across this blog for the first time, or you’ve found your way here through my Instagram account, you might be wondering who exactly Will Run For Insulin is. Who that person behind the screen and keyboard is? Who is that person trying their hardest to manage life as a 20something living with Type 1 Diabetes? Well, allow me to introduce myself to you.
Who Am I?
My name is Sam, and I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) in August of 2016. I was 22 years old and had just graduated college a few months prior. Since my diagnosis, I’ve found that writing about my T1D has helped me reflect upon the many challenges I have faced since that fateful day, and has allowed me to bond with thousands of strangers on the Internet who go through the same thing I do every single day.
It started off by me writing sporadic posts about my struggles and wins with diabetes, and then I would share them on my personal Facebook page. I found that while most of my friends and family were supportive, they didn’t really understand what I was going through, or be able to relate to what I was posting. Eventually, I found out that Instagram had a pretty big T1D community, and I decided to create a separate account solely for my sharing my life with this disease. Instagram helped find an audience, and support system, that could related to my blog posts, and celebrate those wins with me.
So What About the Running Part of Will Run For Insulin?
Growing up, I was very active in athletics. I played softball and basketball, and I also participated in swimming and track and field. The older I got, the more I realized how much I loved swimming which then turned into a 10 year career which included club, high school, and college. My diagnosis came shortly after my ‘retirement’ from swimming, and at that time, I was struggling with learning how to manage my diabetes while working out. Because of those struggles, I stopped working out all together at one point, but thankfully, I found a way to enjoy working out again.
It all started with a good friend, the need to find motivation to get to the gym, and a 5K run for donuts. We found that without something to train for, we rarely got to the gym. After successfully completing our first 5K together, we made it our goal to run a half marathon, and then in 2019, a marathon! I’ve been running road races for almost five years now, and I have since completed multiple 5Ks, 10Ks, half marathons, and one marathon.
My diabetes diagnosis was life changing, and for awhile I was in a really dark place. Despite being told in the doctor’s office on that fateful day that I could still live a normal life, it felt like life as I knew it had ended. Even though learning how to run with Type 1 Diabetes was a long and frustrating journey, running helped get me through that dark place I was in. Completing those races with T1D helped me realize that I could do anything I set my mind to while living with this disease; that it wasn’t the death sentence I originally thought it was. I hope that whoever reads my posts leaves here with a sense of empowerment. Runs don’t always go as planned, neither does life, but each time I finish a run or a race, I’ve proved to myself that I am more than my diagnosis. Something I’ve learned how to translate into my day-to-day life as well.
All the best,