A Plan of Attack for Type 1 Diabetes
Let’s talk about goals.
I personally have a ton, as I’m sure most of you do too. Maybe you have a list taped above the computer of all the places you want to travel: Morocco, China, Indonesia, Brazil, and New Zealand. Maybe it’s something you just have to do to challenge yourself: dive out of a plane with nothing but a parachute and a prayer, or finally get off the couch and run a marathon until your legs are about to give out. Maybe your goals are simpler, but no less difficult: fall in love, make sure you’re happy with what you do, and try your best to have as much joy in your life while bringing as little misery to others as possible.
Bottom line: We all have goals. How you set out to accomplish those is the difficult part.
Let’s take the example of running a marathon. Obviously you can’t just wake up, roll out of bed, and try to push yourself to run 25 miles in a day. You have to plan for that. So what would the steps be?
Well, you should probably start training 6 months in advance. I would start by running 3 miles a day, every other day for the first month. By the third month, I’d want to be up to 10 miles a day, every other day. By the 5th, 20 miles. And then hopefully, in the 6th, I’ll be good to run the race. This seems fairly reasonable, but of course, I haven’t run a marathon, so consider this an educated guess ( this workout could very well give me a heart attack before it improved my distance running).
There are other factors as well. How do you plan to change you diet to fit with this new workout plan? Where will you find the time between work, social life, and other hobbies? How do you keep yourself motivated?
These are all challenges in-and-of themselves, and understanding/anticipating each is vital to your success. If you don’t have a plan, there’s no way you’re running a marathon.
This is, unfortunately, the situation we find ourselves in when discussing the paths to a cure, and why we find it so strange that none of the 4 non-profits ( JDRF, DRIF, Joslin, ADA) have set any sort of goals for what a cure should look like. How do you set milestones and a direction for a cure when you have no idea what you’re looking for? What does it have to accomplish? How easy does it need to be use? Is is a pill? Is it a machine? How expensive is it? What side-effects are acceptable, and what aren’t?
All of these questions bring focus, and narrow the scale of finding a cure into a much more manageable range. It’s a system we believe the charities need to adopt in order to increase the likelihood of finding a practical cure. It’s much easier to set a lofty, unfocused goal for a cure, and much harder to sit down and hash out what it looks like, and what exactly has to be done to achieve it.
For more information on this topic, take a look at our report on Defining a Practical Cure.
Until next time
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