A former member of the Royal Navy will be running the London Marathon for Diabetes UK to inspire others to take up running.
Simon Scott-Munden, 46, from Eastleigh near Southampton noticed his weight was fluctuating six weeks before his 40th birthday.
Following a consultation with a Navy doctor and a medical examination, he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and made the decision to leave the Navy.
Mr Scott-Munden described the diagnosis as “devastating”, adding: “Very quickly I realised, in the first day or two, that would be the end of my naval career.”
He told the PA news agency: “It’I have been able to make a lot of positive changes in my life. Because I’d been away, it was almost weirdly a relief because I was going home.”
Scott-Munden left the Navy and started a new job at Capita as a senior defence training officer. He graduated from the University of Portsmouth and has spent more time with family.
Blake, 11 year old, and Theo, eleven year old, are also running enthusiasts and have started taking part at parkruns and raising money for Diabetes UK.
Mr Scott-Munden said: “When parkruns started to open back up after lockdown, at the end of July/August, they both wanted to do them.
“My wife and I’d go down there with them. At the end, they decided that what they would do is get the buckets out.
“In the first week, they didn’t get much, but then people realised these two boys would be there every week shaking their buckets, and people would bring money and put it in.
“I think they’re quite famous down there now!”
Mr Scott-Munden uses FreeStyle Libre 2 for races. It allows users to read glucose levels on compatible smartphones.
The device is also connected to a separate app on his wife’s phone which allows both to monitor his glucose levels.
Scott-Munden claimed that the system proved to be crucial during the Royal Parks Half Marathon.
He said: “Just before the halfway mark, I checked my blood sugar levels using the Libre and it was showing that I was at about 5.5, which was not going to get me through the remainder of the half marathon.
“The results of that then went through to my wife’s phone, using LibreLinkUp. I had a mile to go to where she was stood. The boys saw it come up on my wife’s phone and asked mummy for some sweets and fuel.
“As I walked to the halfway point of the half marathon, there they were holding out sweets. They understand the diabetes and that’s what that did.
“It’s not just diabetics that I hope to inspire, it’s anybody. There’s a number of my friends who have been inspired by me and they’ve taken up running, because if I’m able to achieve it and I have diabetes, then so can they.”