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Diabetic PE teacher Chris Phillips from Charlestown to compete in triathalon for Diabetes UK

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: February 16, 2014

GRUELLING: Chris Phillips prepares to take part in the Outlaw Half middle distance triathlon in Nottingham.

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A TEACHER from Charlestown is preparing to take part in a gruelling triathlon to raise money for Diabetes UK.

Chris Phillips, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2006, said he is determined not to let the condition interfere with his life.

The 30-year-old, who teaches PE at Redruth School, is now preparing to swim 1.2 miles, cycle 56 miles and run 13.1 miles when he takes part in a middle distance triathlon in June.

"I have been competing in triathlon for three years but have not done a long distance race before, so I decided to set myself a big goal for 2014," he said.

"Since being diagnosed with diabetes it has made me want to challenge myself more to prove that there is nothing I can't do.

He added: "There is nothing that I could have done to avoid developing type 1 diabetes, and I have no intention of letting it get in the way of exciting challenges like this."

Mr Philips was diagnosed with the condition during a long trip to Australia after he found himself feeling weak and thirsty.

"It was a bit of a nightmare as I was getting casual work on building sites to earn cash for the trip and was finding myself unable to push wheelbarrows up hills or dig holes due to lack of strength," he said.

"I was also needing to run off to the toilet every 15 minutes.

"As it was very hot, I was finding myself becoming dehydrated very regularly and would often drink up to six litres of juice a day. I thought this was a bit strange so I went to the GP and the next thing I knew, I was hooked up to lots of wires and in intensive care. Fortunately, the care in Australia was brilliant and they helped me learn all I needed to know."

In preparation for the triathlon, Mr Phillips is training up to 12 hours a week, dividing his time between running, cycling and swimming.

Frances Collier, Diabetes UK South West fundraising manager, said: "We wish Chris all the best with his impressive challenge."

Mr Phillips will compete in the Outlaw Half triathlon in Nottingham on June 1.

To sponsor him visit www.justgiving.com/Chris-Phillips15

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