Lost by Marcus Grimm

After the seven-mile hill into Beaumont, CA, a weary Van A gratefully passed the baton to Van B, whose runners include team manager Tom Kingery and Kona Ironman finisher Ben Semeyn. Unlike Van A, whose participants had been forced to run on little or no sleep, Van B’s day started with a siesta in the RV’s.

Despite the excitement of the day, Kingery said sleep came quickly for him and his teammates. Figuring they got about four good hours of rest, the day seemed to be off to a great start for the group. But when Semeyn missed a turn onto a tiny dirt road early into his run, the runners in Van B instead found themselves looking for the Ironman in the California desert.

Semeyn wasn’t concerned for his diabetes. A wise diabetic plans for such contingencies and he had plenty of carbohydrates to maintain his blood sugars. But still, time was wasting. Semeyn had persuaded a kind stranger to use their cellphone just as Van B tracked him down forty-five minutes later. Semeyn said he wasn’t scared, but still, “I was frustrated about the time. We’ve got a long way to go and I didn’t want to be costing us minutes so early into it.”

The miscue wouldn’t be the only thing to slow the runners down, though, as desert headwinds, mountainous climbs and dirt roads all continued to challenge the goals of Team Type 1 SANOFI. Still Semeyn isn’t deterred.

“We’ve always been a group of guys who are in tune with each other’s blood sugars,” he said, “but it’s amazing to me that we’re already doing the same thing with each other’s runs. We’re very quick to understand who can run further or shorter, faster or slower. ”

Kingery agreed, adding that despite the loss of time and what he called a “beautiful, desolate” landscape, “Spirits are high and we’re thrilled to be out here doing this together.”

Team Type 1 is made up of 100 of some of the finest professional and diabetic athletes in the world. Their mission is to promote wellness and achievement among diabetics worldwide. The Run Across America, a journey of more 3,000 miles, culminates on November 14, World Diabetes Day, in New York City. 


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