Why A Person with Diabetes Bikes to Beat Cancer

BBC TrainingAs I mentioned yesterday, I rode in the Kentucky Tour de Cure in June. Great ride. Great day! Lately I’ve been training for a couple other rides, especially a century in the Bike to Beat Cancer in September.

I’m a person who has lived with Type 1 Diabetes for more than 43 years. It makes sense to ride in an event to raise money for diabetes research. But why ride 100 miles in  an event to raise funds for cancer? Part of the answer to that question is pretty obvious, but another part—the most important part, I believe—is not so obvious.

Obviously, cancer is a huge issue for many people. I’m guessing you know someone who has or has had cancer. I do, and I have. My mom died 14 years ago from leukemia, a cancer of the blood. My wife and I have had good friends, from our church and from the college we both graduated from, who have lost their battle with the disease or who are in the throes of the battle right now. I hate what cancer does to people who are misfortunate to have it and deal with it. I’m riding to raise some money for cancer research, awareness, and advocacy. I’m riding for individuals and the families of people affected by the disease: Betty, Ed, Carolyn, Yvette, Carole and Steve, Renae, and many others.

As important as those reasons are, however, there’s something else. Over the years, I’ve found that people who live with difficult circumstances deal with them in one of two ways. Some people look inward with anxiety. They usually also look forward with fear. But others look upward with an unexplainable hope, and they look outward with compassion.

Here are two videos of people I’ll be thinking about as I ride 100 miles this September. The first video is of Carole who dealt bravely with cancer; the second is her husband after she died:

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/92523691″>Carole Swoboda Testimony</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/neccwired”>Northeast Christian Church</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p> <p>4.20.14</p>

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/124333331″>Steve Swoboda Testimony – Easter 2015</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/neccwired”>Northeast Christian Church</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p> <p>4.5.15</p>

If the videos do not appear in your browser, please click below:

The lesson I’ve learned over the years is to keep my focus upward and outward—in that order. I find it so much easier to live well with my diabetes when I keep my eyes focused outward, on others. And I’ve also discovered that the best way to stay focused outward is to keep my focus upward every day. It makes all the difference in the world.

I’d love to hear your story. How does your focus affect how you live with the life circumstances that have been dealt to you?

It’s Not About the Ride

Tdc RRsLet’s catch up. I’m sorry it’s been so long since I last blogged here. Over the spring and summer, I’ve been training on my bike for different events, and just riding with friends for the fun of it. In June I rode with a bunch of fellow PWD (People with Diabetes) in the Kentucky Tour de Cure. I’m the Kentucky Red Rider Chairperson, so of course I’m passionate about this ride. Some of my regular riding buddies took off pretty early, but I could tell that a fellow T1Der (person with Type 1 Diabetes) was struggling a bit on the very hilly 63-mile route, so I stayed with him and pulled as much as I could, and the two of us enjoyed the ride and some good conversation together.

Sometimes it’s not about the ride. For me . . .

  • Relationships are more important than rides.
  • People are more important than pace.
  • Personal relationships are more important than personal records.
  • Warm fellowship is more important than watts.

OK, maybe I’m stretching the point a bit too much, but you get the idea.

Sometimes we get overly obsessed with the event, whatever it is, and miss out on the most vital things in life. Average speed sure looks good on my Strava and Facebook pages, but who cares after a day or so of that?

Tomorrow I’m going to take this idea a bit further. Click here to read it..

In the mean time, what do you think? Whether you ride bikes or anything else, what’s the point, in your view?