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How to Exercise with Type 1 Diabetes? It’s a big question and has always been the elephant in the room; present, but largely overlooked by the mainstream medical profession. As most people working or living with Type 1 Diabetes know, exercising introduces a whole new level of complexity to managing the condition – difficult enough even at a basic level.
Participation in physical activity and sport is an important component of psychosocial and physical development for any child, this also extends into adult life. As well as working to help find a cure The Born to Run Foundation is committed to helping improve the lives of people affected by Type 1 Diabetes in the here and now.
exT1D.com.au provides a comprehensive internet based collection of resources that empowers people with Type 1 Diabetes to engage with confidence in physical activity, exercise and sport regardless of geographic location.
Having produced many positive real world outcomes www.exT1D.com.au is widely acknowledged within the Australian diabetes world, lay and professional, as being of great value and to be unique in the true sense of the word. Based on its merits, researchers from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and the University of Sydney are conducting clinical trials evaluating the educational effectiveness of exT1D’s content and delivery style.
The Born to Run Foundation is raising funds to support this research with a view to helping exT1D gain broader acceptance in the health and medical community so as to provide greater access to the key beneficiaries i.e., people living with Type 1 diabetes, their families and their health care professionals.
Developed by Accredited Exercise Physiologist and Diabetes Educator Allan Bolton, an enduring role model who himself has lived with Type 1 diabetes more than 30 years, the exT1D.com.au website provides evidence based education combined with lived experience to help people understand the metabolic complexities of exercising with Type 1 Diabetes and develop real world solutions relative to individual life context.
“exT1D is being used by Roger Hanney and Stephen Donovan team members of the Born to Run 5 Desert running teams, and has been an important enabler for them to be able to run in such extreme physical events.”
In a recent note to others with Type 1 Diabetes Roger wrote “…Like some of you, I have had the good fortune to flunk the genetic lottery in a modern age where type 1 diabetes can be managed, rather than entirely surrendered to. But even with high tech pumps and self-contained glucose meters, it can all go south hard and fast and that's when pioneers like Allan Bolton can really save the day.”
Exercise is an area of Type 1 Diabetes education that has been broken for a long time. No government or non-government organisation has ever allocated resources to support this important area of care and education.
The exT1D education tools provide a highly accessible, powerful combination of scientific evidence and lived experience to help people with Type 1 Diabetes of all ages and experience understand and integrate exercise into daily life with safety and confidence.
It is vital children and their parents learn to cope early to enhance the development of a healthy relationship with exercise early in life and minimise loss of opportunity.
Given the majority of Type 1 Diabetes cases are diagnosed in children and young people less than 15 years the exT1D tools also provide parents and carers of children with applicable knowledge to help their children learn to cope early and gain life long confidence.
This translates to a much improved long-term prognosis against the potentially catastrophic complications that come with less than optimally managed Type 1 diabetes like blindness, limb amputation, heart disease and renal failure leading to premature death.
The exT1D tools also assist in dealing with the psychological challenges of living with a lifelong disease with such a high 24/7 management burden by helping reduce anxiety and increasing self empowerment.