Presenting At The JDRF UK Discovery Day Cardiff 2016

Today was the JDRF UK (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) diabetes Discovery Day and it was my pleasure to present at this great event, for parents, children and young people. Held at the Clayton Hotel in Cardiff, the day was all about the type 1 diabetes community, research and inspiration and it ticked every box for me!

The event was opened by JDRF's organiser for this region, Abi, who introduced what the day would be about and then kindly introduced me before I gave my presentation. Writing the presentation a few days ago, I knew there were some key things that I wanted to talk about. But when I truly considered the message that I wanted to deliver for parents, children and young people to take away, there was one thing that came to mind as the 'secret' to my athletic and diabetic journeys, and that was to 'Run Your Own Race'.

Photo Credits: With thanks to Sara Crawley

By which I wanted to let people know, that sometimes when you're diagnosed with diabetes, you might feel like you've been given a bit of a staggered started, as it were. That those people without the condition might have a bit of a head start with their pancreas' that deliver insulin. But if you stop comparing and measuring yourself to the people in the 'lane' next to you, and concentrate on running your own own race, then who's to tell you that you're not doing it right? Then with which there's more head space to cope with the challenges and hurdles that living with diabetes can throw at you. I concluded my presentation with a quote from Jesse Owens, in my mind an athlete who has overcome more than the challenges of the athletics track, in order to prove himself. This said

'The battles that count aren't the ones for gold medals. The struggle within yourself - the invisible, inevitable battles, that's where it's at'

- Jesse Owens

Professor Colin Dayan and his assistant

My presentation was then followed by an interesting one from JDRF UK's Jen, who spoke about current research being funded by the charity. This included encapsulation, smart insulin and the closed loop system. Next was Dr. Terri who spoke about her JDRF funded postdoctoral research on our body's immune response to insulin. We then finished off the day with an interactive workshop from Professor Colin Dayan who is conducting research on newly diagnosed patients at Cardiff University, an interesting project that is also being funded by the charity.

Rufus Bear

I was truly touched and humbled at the end of the event when I got the chance to chat with other delegates and their children. Their enthusiasm and motivation to help their children engage in sport reminded me of the way that my own Mum helped me do this too, was and is incredibly encouraging!
If you want to watch some of the presentation, head on over to my Facebook page for a video!


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My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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