Every once in a while you come across an inspirational person who achieves their goals despite adversity or chronic illness. One of these rare people is in the spotlight right now participating in his 4th Olympics and taking on one of the most grueling events.
Kris Freeman is on the U.S. Nordic ski team, making his 4th Olympic appearance despite having Type 1 diabetes. He monitors his blood sugar as many as 20 times before a cross-country race, and, as he does every day of his life, Freeman secures a tubeless OmniPod insulin pump to his chest and a Dexcom continuous glucose monitor to his abdomen for races.
Freeman has completed the 5-kilometer classic and the 30-kilometer skiathlon so far in the Sochi games. While he hasn’t won a medal in any of his Olympic events, he told Yahoo Sports “I don’t really care, because I am diabetic and this is what I am — this is who I am — and speculating about what could be doesn’t matter. So, I try not to be resentful of the situation. Diabetes is a huge pain. As anyone who knows, it’s not a fun disease. It will always be with me. I’m at the Olympic Games for the fourth time, so I’m hoping that people can see that it really doesn’t have to have a negative impact on your life.”
Next he will participate in the 50 kilometer, a tough competition lasting over 2 hours, which is scheduled to take place February 23rd. Best of luck to this courageous athlete!
The American Diabetes Association recommends all persons with diabetes have a medical ID with you at all times. Medical IDs are usually worn as a bracelet or a necklace. Traditional IDs are etched with basic, key health information about the person, and some IDs now include compact USB drives that can carry a person’s full medical record, such as the fact that they have diabetes and use insulin. Emergency medical personnel are trained to look for a medical ID.