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Terrance Thomas: Running to Keep Diabetes in Check.

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This is a picture of Terrance Thomas holding one of his many trophies.

"Those are mine, up there," Terrance Thomas says simply, taking the runner's trophies he has won in community races from a shelf on his living room wall.

He has come by them the hard way, running the Bapchule roads near his home every day of the week, in the often humid twilight, close to nine each evening. Only on Saturday and Sunday does he sometimes slack off a bit from his three to four mile regimen, reducing his effort to a more casual mile or so.

Although he has been an amateur boxer and at one time fought brush fires while living in California, Terrance doesn't run for toughness. He runs for health.

The Sacaton native was diagnosed with diabetes at age 11, while attending boarding school in Carson City, Nevada. He began losing weight, and a physical turned up high blood sugar. As an adult with diabetes, he suffered from fatigue on the job, and found himself wanting to sleep all the time. After a hard year in 1989, he says, "I started an exercise program for myself. I try to pay attention to what I eat, have small portions of everything, but not too much." But it is his running that he believes helps him keep his diabetes in check.

Sometimes he gets his wife to drop him off at some distance and he runs home to vary his routine. "I think it makes a difference in my health," he says. His trophies speak for a winning attitude.


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