IRONMAN competitor lives and trains with diabetes

Mike Hebe was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago.

But the diagnosis came as a surprise to the competitive athlete who had completed an IRONMAN in under 10 hours and felt healthy as can be.

“It was a huge shock,” said Hebe. “I’ve had weird blood levels and blood tests for five years. It’s hard to say how long it was working. I was always on the edge of having too high of a glucose.” 

Turning a negative into a positive

Hebe has been a cyclist for 20 years and has recently joined Team Novo Nordisk, a world-wide sports team that includes more than 100 athletes--cyclists, runners, triathletes--who all have diabetes. The team advocates for the disease through races and competitions all over the country.

“It’s all about raising awareness. It’s something that, you need to have a little more due diligence when it comes to fueling and nutrition," Hebe said.

Even after the diabetes diagnosis, Hebe rides competitively and does CrossFit to train. He's now an endurance coach with CrossFit 717. He says he likes to push athletes to their limits through lots of running-based and endurance exercises.

“Ultimately, everything is based on strength. People might not see that in endurance world, but if you hold together longer, you will be stronger in the end. That was one glaring deficiency that I had, so it was a good time to join CrossFit.”

Hebe says that learning to live and train with diabetes has been a long process, but that he's getting better at it with time.

“It’s always going to be a learning experience,” Hebe said. “You learn and go from there.”

Source: Penn Live

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