This morning was the Birmingham Tour de Cure, an event to raise awareness about and funds for American Diabetes Association. It’s a bike ride more than a race with choices of distances. I did the 20 mile ride along with my cousin Nancy, who came from New Hampshire for the event. Both of our mothers were diabetic along with their sister – so all three girls. I have several aunts on the other side of the family who were also diabetic and now, three sisters and several cousins who have the disease. I know there is a chance that it may be in my future, given the genetics.
I was part of Team Red, a team for those with diabetes and those who support people with diabetes. I wound up with a Red Rider jersey as a result but I am not quite sure if I was really supposed to. Red Riders are technically people who ride with diabetes.
The American Diabetes Association office in Birmingham gave out over $200,000 in supplies to diabetics around the state of Alabama in the weeks following the April 27th tornadoes. That effort has now ended as we are moving into another stage of recovery. The mission of ADA is “to prevent and cure diabetes and improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.” Providing supplies for disaster victims certainly supports that.
Every 17 seconds someone is diagnosed with diabetes. It is sometimes referred to as the silent epidemic because it often goes undiagnosed. Heart attack and stroke are often related to diabetes, though not always. There are other complications as well. In a previous post I wrote about my mom, who lost her leg due to the disease. ADA is committed to research, to supporting those with diabetes, and to advocacy. There is much more information on the ADA website.
Tour de Cure is a fundraising event for these efforts. The ride was today but you can still contribute for the next few weeks.
The choice of rides was 103 miles, 64 miles, 37 miles and 20 miles. For a while I contemplated the 37 mile ride but I am glad I did the 20 mile ride since I had not been on my bike for about a month before this morning. The ride began at St. Vincent’s 119, a beautiful spot outside of Birmingham. There were over 200 riders in all this morning. The weather forecast was for temperatures in the 90s. The morning began rather overcast and not too hot. I was hoping to finish before it hit 90 – and did.
The ride was out 119, then through a very nice scenic route, and back 119. I can’t say that I loved riding on 119! The route was fairly flat, with a few hills. 119 had a fair amount of traffic though. Most drivers were pretty good but I did have one van go by and nearly clip me. I felt rather slow on the way out but I was up to my normal speed on the way back in. I will need to get out in the next few weeks before my next triathlon. This was the first hot day that I rode. It was probably 80 by the time we finished.
It was a great event. Now I am moving on to think about Step Out, a 5k walk that is still scheduled for September 10 in Tuscaloosa. We have put the planning on hold due to the tornado but will get going again this summer. Like Tour de Cure, Step Out walks are held all over the country. Please join us in Tuscaloosa or look for an event in your area.