Doing It Anyway with Diabetes

Posted by natalie on Tue, 10/23/2012 - 13:21 in


Nat in her blue tutu (for diabetes awareness!), stopping to test her blood sugar during the Rock‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in AZ.

One of the funny things about being on a television show that is watched by millions, such as The Amazing Race, is that people who watch the show feel like they know you. I’ve been at weddings, restaurants, even walking down the street and someone will shout out, “Hey Nat! We loved you and Kat on The Amazing Race. I can’t believe you did that bungee with your fear of heights!” It never ceases to amaze me that people I have never seen before know these details about me!

One thing that people may not know about me is that I am no hardcore athlete. I think that a lot of people assume I am a great athlete given my win on The Amazing Race and also because I participate in so many athletic things. But here it is…I am an exceedingly unexceptional athlete. I don’t compete in races, I complete them. There is a big difference.

It’s not that I am not competitive; it’s actually quite the contrary. I am very competitive and anyone who watched The Amazing Race knows that both Kat and I were willing to do whatever it took to win (even eating an entire sheep’s head – ICK!). But when it comes to running half-marathons or doing a triathlon, I don’t to it to beat anyone. I do it just to finish it; and that is something that anyone can do – even if you have diabetes!

The reason I feel that this is an important message to get out there is that a lot of people assume athletic people are naturally gifted and sort of genetically or emotionally primed to be that way; and that holds a lot of us with diabetes back from trying our own athletic endeavors.

I’m here to let it be known that you don’t have to be good at ANY of these things to do them! Who cares if you are slow, if you stop every few miles to check your blood sugar level and have a snack, or are more interested in wearing a tutu across the finish line than what your actual race time is? The important thing is to get out there and have a great time doing something that is good for your mind, your body and your diabetes.