Aidan Broddell wanted to convince people his type 1 diabetes wouldn’t hold him back, and the Junior Champion Bodybuilder is letting his body do the talking.
21-year-old Aidan was 10 when he was diagnosed; he has since gone on to become one of Britain’s leading physique athletes.
In 2015, he won the 2015 UKBFF British Championship Junior Men’s Physique category and is also a sponsored athlete and sports nutrition ambassador for Multipower.
He told Diabetes.co.uk that far from holding him back, having diabetes has made him even more motivated to achieve his goals.
“I’ve always been motivated, but my diabetes has motivated me even more, especially in regards to competitive bodybuilding,” Aidan said.
“I wanted to prove to people that diabetes shouldn’t hold you back, and my aim is for there to be more understanding across the UK about the disease.”
Nottingham-born Aidan had never been a stranger to sport. Aged 10, he had been playing rugby for several years when he was diagnosed with type 1, and gradually learned that his diabetes necessitated certain changes to ensure optimum performance.
“I found I couldn’t just wake up and skip breakfast, or not fuel my body adequately. I was originally put on a twice-daily insulin regimen, which meant I had to eat, otherwise my blood sugars would drop; alternatively, I couldn’t eat too much and risk my blood sugars spiking.
“Finding this balance was difficult, but I soon adapted. I then switched to quick-acting and long-acting insulin, which allowed much more freedom in my diet and helped with training.”
Building Aidan’s body
Aged 18, Aidan took bodybuilding and weight training more seriously. He started preparing for competitions and developed aspirations to excel within the fitness industry.
“Training for competitions and normal training cannot be compared, purely due to diet. Competitors put themselves through such strict calorific deficits to burn body fat and this is where it can be difficult for people with diabetes, and result in a lot of hypos.
“My diet alters consistently throughout the year, dependent upon competitions, photo shoots, and current goals. I am currently about to embark on an 8-10 week cut to get in shape for a videography and photoshoot.”
Aidan always checks his blood sugar levels before training and says if he is not between 6-8 mmol/l, he risks hypoglycemia. If higher, he risks elevated sugar levels following physical activity.
As well as fitting in training and competitions, he is also studying Investment and Finance in Property at Nottingham Trent University and hopes to go into this field after graduating.
Visit our Diabetes and Fitness page to find out more about how physique and weight training can affect blood glucose levels.