A Beeston woman has taken the bold step of taking on a running challenge each month until Christmas, in order to raise money to support Diabetes UK.
Mel Arendt, 42, was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 2015 after a routine health check. She’s taking on the running challenge after changing her lifestyle and losing more than two stone.
Mel says she went into denial after finding out she had Type 2 diabetes. She said:
“When I first found out I had Type 2, it made sense as I had felt unwell for a while, but I couldn’t come to terms with managing the condition. I struggled with my medication and couldn’t keep on top of what I needed to do.”
People with Type 2 diabetes don’t produce enough insulin or the insulin they produce doesn’t work properly. Around 90 per cent of the 3.8 million people diagnosed with diabetes have Type 2.
There are almost 1 million more people living with Type 2 diabetes, who don’t know they have it because they haven’t been diagnosed, they might get Type 2 diabetes because of their family history, age and ethnic background puts them at increased risk. They are also more likely to get Type 2 diabetes if they are overweight.
A year after her diagnosis, Mel decided to make some changes to her lifestyle in a bid to get on top of her condition. She started to make improvements to her diet as well as going to the gym. She also attended her local parkrun at Cross Flatts Park and found she really enjoyed running.
Mel, who since changing her lifestyle has lost over two stone, added:
“I eventually came off my medication and am now managing my condition through a healthy diet and exercise. It wasn’t easy and I couldn’t have done it without the support of my friends and family.
“That’s why I want to take on this challenge, to help other people who may be struggling with diabetes. I love running and I feel brilliant after changing my life around, so hopefully I can inspire others too.”
Mel will be taking part in runs across the region each month, including the Leeds 10K, St Aidan’s Half Marathon and the Meanwood Valley Trail.
Tyler Anderson, Diabetes UK Regional Fundraiser said:
“We’re incredibly grateful to Mel for her amazing support. Our much-needed work wouldn’t be possible without the determination and generosity of our incredible fundraisers. The money raised will help fund ground-breaking research, care services and campaigns that can change the lives of those living with diabetes.”
To sponsor Mel, visit: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Melanie-Arendt
This post is based on a press release issued by Diabetes UK