Point-of-Care Perspectives from PatientPoint

Guest Post: Running My Heart Out in 2020

by Christina Herrera

Know Diabetes by Heart™ is a collaborative initiative of the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association. The initiative aims to raise awareness and understanding of the link between diabetes and cardiovascular disease, to empower people to better manage their risk and to support healthcare providers in educating and engaging patients with type 2 diabetes to prevent cardiovascular deaths, heart attacks, heart failure and strokes. 

In collaboration with Know Diabetes by Heart™, PatientPoint is airing Christina’s story and a Know Diabetes By Heart™ PSA featuring Academy-Award winning actress Angela Bassett on digital waiting room screens in primary care and cardiology practices nationwide.

After losing my mother, sister and dad to heart disease due to complications with diabetes and after having a triple bypass the summer of 2018, I resolved to take better care of me. One example is over the recent holiday season: I pledged to let others plan the big holiday celebrations, allowing me not to worry about planning or being the perfect host. I would focus on my health, my race. Literally.

I ran my first 5K ever in December of 2018, just seven months after my heart surgery. Since then, instead of having a big holiday celebration I have decided that every holiday season, I will run my race! This past December I ran my first 10K and I’m pretty proud of this moment. With the right amount of support and mentorship I completed something that seemed so out of reach.

And guess what? I’ve signed up for a triathlon in April and have my eye on a HALF-marathon for December. Do you see a trend here? Some might call it insanity, but it’s determination. Determination to hold myself accountable to my heart health and make sure my family’s health history changes with me.

I do my best when I’m moving, growing and taking on new challenges, and bet many of you do, too. This year I’m determined to put my own “why” first and fight for it. I see my why every day in my son, the students I teach, and my running friends – and I don’t want to miss a thing!

Is it easy? No. Not by a long shot. Living healthy is a process and one that I have to be intentional about every single day. As they say, slow and steady wins the race.

If I can do something like this, I know you can, too. What is your race? How will you take care of you in 2020?

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