I decided on Friday to not compete at USAPL Raw Nationals. This is due to changing my focus to my health and the weight loss required to optimize my health. Since I have type 2 diabetes, reducing my body fat levels will improve my diabetes control and possibly reverse it. Abdominal fat or more specifically visceral fat, which is internal and surrounds the organs can cause type 2 diabetes and other health related problems. This type of fat impairs liver function and having hepatitis C, it is imperative that I lose weight. Having hepatitis C prevents me from taking oral diabetes medications and leaves me with the option of taking insulin, which my physician was recommending. I one weeks time I have made good progress by going back to a low carb diet. My physician said he will hold off on his recommendation of insulin since my progress is good. I have a follow up in 4 to 6 weeks. Deciding to not compete at Raw Nationals was a tough decision, but now since I am not competing, it has taken the pressure off and gives me the chance to improve my health. I have allowed powerlifting to get in they way of my health. It is not powerlifting that has caused my diabetes control to be lax, but an excuse. I feel like if I would have tried to reach my health goals and compete at Raw Nationals both would be adversely affected. I don’t want to do a national level meet with a high possibility of not performing well. Since I was half way through my training cycle for Raw Nationals and wanted to test my strength, I will be competing in a NASA meet in Alvin, TX on Saturday.