A1C and Race Results – Striving for Better


Whenever I run a race, no matter what the distance, I always want to do better than before.  I want to set a new personal record. It doesn’t matter how much better, as long as I shave off a little time from my previous time. It’s as if the last race is always a bench mark for the next. (Had I started racing when I was in my 20’s this would not be possible.)  Although I know there is a limit on how fast I can be, and that one day I will run my fastest marathon, half or 10K, I think I will always feel this way when I compete.

I have gotten much faster since I started running seriously, but not all my races have been new personal records. On Saturday I did set a new personal record when I ran my first 15K race. Since it was my first 15K, any time would have done the job.  I actually wasn’t supposed to run at all (doctor’s orders) but I decided I would run it as a slow fun run. Running for the t-shirt.

That may have been a good plan for someone else.

When the race began I forgot the doctor and my decision.  I just ran. I knew I should slow down but I felt strong and I sped up without noticing. I finished the race at a time I would have probably been proud of had I tried to do my best. But since I didn’t push myself to the limit (unlike my last 10K) I feel great about my accomplishment – 1:08:54 (Personal Time).



However, there’s another result I am not as happy about- my latest blood test results which I got back last Friday. I am referring to my A1c, of course. I know that the other results are important as well, but the one I wait for is the HbA1c.

I view my A1c results a little like race times, where I want the next one to always be better than the previous one. I have been much more successful with my races than with my A1c’s but still feel like I failed the test when my new result isn’t better than the last.

This Friday I got a result which threw me a bit, 6.4%. The reason it threw me was because it is exactly the same as the one before. Three months ago when I got that result I was very happy feeling the move to the pump was a great idea. This time I didn’t know how I should feel.  It isn’t a bad result, but I had really wanted to do better this time.

Unlike in running, in diabetes management there is no personal record, it’s not about any one result but about keeping your blood sugar under control for a very long time. But diabetes management is a lot like running where having specific goals and striving to improve keeps you motivated to continue training seriously from race to race and year to year. 

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