- Diabetes doesn’t have to keep you from reaching your dream, even if that dream is to run across the nation — just ask a runner who visited Muscatine
MUSCATINE, Iowa — A Maryland man is running more than 3,100 miles coast-to-coast to spread his message to Americans.
That message: if you have diabetes, there’s no reason you can’t live a long, exciting life.
And Doug Masiuk would know; for the past 35 years, he’s lived with Type 1 diabetes.
On Monday, he brought his message to town where he stopped by Mercy Family Medicine during a stayover in Muscatine.
Masiuk, 38, of Annapolis began his cross-country journey — titled 1Run — on May 20, but he’s been running a lot longer than that. He said he’s been running ever since he was a kid, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that he started taking it seriously.
Of his current run, Masiuk said he took it easy at first, running across a parking lot and short distances before being able to go 15 miles in one night. Now, he averages about 20-30 miles a day. Through his website, www.1run.org, people can donate to help Masiuk reach his destination.
“Over 200 people have ran across the country before, so why not a diabetic?” said Masiuk.
He said that at first, his friends and family weren’t happy with the idea, citing their concerns about his health, but he explained to them that this was his chance to do what he can to give back to the diabetes community.
Masiuk began his trek in San Francisco and has been taking his mobile message across Interstate 80. During his run, he checks his glucose about every five miles and along the way, he stops at hospitals, schools and senior centers to relay his message.
It’s stops like these that have made the trip take so long, said Masiuk, but he stressed that it’s important to get into communities and talk to people.
Masiuk said he hopes his run will help rid people of misconceptions about diabetes. “[This run] is done in defiance of what people are afraid of this disease doing to them.”
Masiuk is accompanied by his friend, Daniel Lynn, who drives Masiuk around when he’s not running and documents the run for their website, www.1run.org.
“There’s been a few times on the trip where we wondered if he was going to make it,” Lynn said.
Masiuk recounted a couple of hair-raising episodes on the journey: once he couldn’t find insulin and another time a glucose meter he was using wasn’t working.
Jessica Fletcher of Muscatine is a student at the University of Iowa. She also has Type 1 diabetes. She said she’s been following Masiuk’s run on Facebook and wanted to meet him. She and her mother, Kaye Perley of Muscatine, met with Masiuk at the Mercy Family Medicine in Muscatine.
“We talked about how we both deal with diabetes on a daily basis and he gave me advice on how to keep it in check,” Fletcher said.
“These interactions are why we’re here doing this,” Masiuk said.