The things I never thought. My Nike 15k recap, running with type 1 diabetes + other autoimmune fun

 

 

Source Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

Source Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

The Nike Toronto 15k took place a few weeks ago and I need to share with you some surprises that happened along the way. This was a great experience from my own personal health perspective in dealing with multiple autoimmune disease fun.

1. At the water stations, they provided Nuun. I have never used this before at a race but realized quickly that I needed it. According to the packet, each Nuun tablet has 13 grams of carbs, but was each tablet used per drink? I have no idea.

Lesson: Check to see what is offered at the race stations and try it out beforehand. My stomach doesn’t welcome everything with open arms so I lucked out that taking it in went smoothly.

Also, check if they water the carb drinks down (common practice). That can also mess up your calculations while you are pounding the pavement. Be assertive. Sometimes companies don’t like to admit how much they water down drinks but usually when you say your medical well being heavily depends on knowing this information (and it does), you can usually get a truthful answer.

2. Since I was on an island (Centre Island), it meant cooler temps with the water surrounding me. Add some nasty rain and chilly wind and it equalled out to be quite the bg dip before the race started. I downed a ton of carbs but nothing seemed to bring my levels up so I started a lot lower than I would have liked.

Lesson: Think of ALL weather factors and basically be a came and pack all your food, super extra food, if possible.

3. Take lows in stride. It’s easy to get frustrated quickly when you look down and see your CGM says….

Lesson: Enjoy the experience and think of it this way: You are running a race. Some people would never get the chance to do this, yet here you are, feeling the buzz of thousands around you getting active and building a sense of community. STOP AND TAKE IT IN.

Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

Running where the planes take off! How cool is that!? Source: Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

4. Okay, if I can help it, I rather pee in the bush than wait in line for the few port-a-potty’s that are out there on the course. I did not look as carefully as I had thought and when I crouched down a thorny needle-like plant went right into my inner thigh. Once I was done I quickly pulled up my pants and kept running but it hurt. A lot. Eventually it either fell out or I became numb to the pain. Either way…

Lesson: Pee carefully.

Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

Nike Women Toronto Facebook Page

Overall, the race went well. I had to take some of my other neuro medication the night before (which makes me feel super lazy and feeling ‘hungover’ the next day) so I was thrilled with my efforts. And once I got into the groove… I took the time to stop and smell the roses.

XO,

Jess

 

Animas Canada has kindly chosen to support me with the Dexcom CGM as I continue to train for triathlons, cycling and running events. I believe in full transparency and appreciate that Animas Canada does not review or approve my blog posts. Please read the full disclosure here

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Training this season with Lumiere, my continuous glucose monitor

IMG_9343

 

WHYYYYYYYYYYY!?!?!?

My mind screams it in anger. On good days, I yell it half-laughing.

It is the question I ask myself when I ate enough carbs to feed a small army before my workout and yet, here I go, tanking into low blood sugar abyss.

falling

This happens for mostly cycling and running these days. It seems like sometimes no matter what I consume, my body sticks its tongue out at me and says “Oh yeah? Watch this”.

I have purposely set my low alarm alert a bit higher so that I can be notified even earlier to try and adjust and avoid the lows.

Bonus? Drinking Coke. Mmmm I love regular Coke.

Minus? Frustration. The quick reaction to blame myself. I need to catch these sooner and just trust that hey, I’m doing what I can, and that’s all I can ask of myself.

These lows have changed how I train in that I carry more fuel (I am a human camel).

This season I realized how much I miss running with nothing. Just carrying absolutely nothing. No snacks, no belt, fanny pack, hydration pack. NOTHING.

To combat this, I found a loop near my house where I can set supplies down in a safe area and run free! The loops don’t bother me as I zone out when I run so this works for me. As for Lumiere, I do put him inside my running arm band (which I’m fine with). I feel seeing the same thing over and over is worth it to run without carrying as much and feeling that lightness.

I know they have golf carts that follow people around. Wonder if I can get some kind of contraption that does the same? I could carry my water, glucose tabs, bars, tester, CGM, insulin.

Am I dreaming? Maybe. But it’s fun to think about it.

XO,

J

Animas Canada has kindly chosen to support me with the Dexcom CGM as I continue to train for triathlons, cycling and running events. I believe in full transparency and appreciate that Animas Canada does not review or approve my blog posts. Please read the full disclosure here

Let’s get physical: working out with a CGM

IMG_8456-1I’m off the market.

Officially attached… at the abdomen?

2015 is going to be filled with lots of races but with the added bonus of a continuous glucose monitor.

I did a summary of the Dexcom after a week trial last year in April. Read it here. Now I’ve got one- and am ready to train this season.

Any workout tips for a newbie to the CGM world?

 

New year. New season. New CGM. Let’s get started.

Xo,

J

Animas Canada has decided to support me in my athletic journey with a CGM. 

I believe in full transparency so I’ve made a disclosures page on my site which clearly states this sponsorship.

 

 

 

Review: 7 day Dexcom continuous glucose monitor trial

7 days with the Dexcom condensed into a 15 second video.

Read about Day 1 with the Dexcom here Knowledge= freedom. This past week I made several discoveries, the most major being that in between midnight and 4 a.m., my blood glucose levels go LL Cool J on me. Dawn phenomenon= blood glucose spikes at the end of the night. After 4 a.m. things go back to “normal” and I wake up around 6-8 mmol/l (108-144 mg/dl). The rest of the nights brought similar results, although not as drastic. I would have NEVER KNOWN about this without a CGM.  How long has this been going on? Will I feel better when I eliminate night-time spikes? Is it finally long-lasting insulin time? Is my pump shopping going to become a reality soon? The week-long trial has sparked a lot of questions. I’m going to my endo armed with all the data I’ve collected. For the week I managed to get in running, yoga, NTC fit workouts and ballet. I couldn’t bring myself to try swimming as my goggles got stolen a few weeks ago and I wouldn’t be able to swim knowing someone could snag Dex.

My workout lows dramatically decreased and I believe that’s because I could see when I was heading south and could correct before things got bad. Whether it was thrift shopping, studying or eating out, Dex and I were inseparable.

And with the pretty graph as proof, I confirmed that brown rice sushi is heaven-sent. Check out Shawn Shepheard and I’s sweet bg’s post-Japanese chow down. Exact same #’s too!     Have to admit I was sad to lose Dex on Sunday. But I’m so grateful. So grateful for the trial. So grateful for the knowledge I gained during the week. Now it’s time to meet with my health team and find out what’s best. J © t1dactiveliving.com All rights reserved.

CGM ON. Day 1 of my Dexcom continuous glucose monitor trial

Sunday. At Starbucks. Jacked up on an iced coffee, I put on my first continuous glucose monitor.

Read my last post on CGM’s here.

Ready, set, watch bg’s

It takes two hours to get the Dexcom running and I can tell you it was a LONG wait.

After driving home, I paced, stared at the screen and ogled at this little device now sticking to my body.

 

The perfect distraction was all the messages I got on social media. Within minutes of posting about my Dexcom trial, one woman offered to mail me Skin Tac (she was in the UK!), and so many others gave great tips such as…

  • not to panic if I see the “???” sign on the Dexcom as it will usually correct itself and that it does not mean something is wrong
  • to stay calm and not stress about getting used to a new device
  • not getting discouraged with seeing the full bg picture during physical activity
  • eat realistically
  • being aware of sweat/water, tight vs. loose clothing and what kind of beating the device will take for various kinds of activity

FINALLY, it was time! Two back-to-back bg’s with my regular meter to calibrate and then poof. It was working.

 

Within the first 15 minutes of putting it on, I had a slight low. It was REALLY NEAT to see as I treated, what was happening with my bg’s. I spent a good chunk of the afternoon just marveling at it.

 

CGM’s are just amazing. I’m extremely thankful that I have access to this type of amazing technology, even if it’s just for a week. Some people will never get to use one or even have regular access to insulin for that matter.

I’m going to enjoy every moment of this.

Excited to document 7 days of CGM,

J

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Trying my first continuous glucose monitor (CGM) this weekend! Come to me Dexcom!

On Sunday I will be hooked up to my very first continuous glucose monitor (CGM), the Dexcom by Animas.

As the time winds down, I’m starting to get antsy. I just want it on me already! My one week trial has come at the perfect time. I’ll be heading into week 2 of my half-marathon training. Here’s what the week will look like running-wise:

 

It will be interesting to see my bg’s during my short and long runs. Will it help me prevent lows? How will it feel on? So many unknowns.

You better believe I’ll be putting it to the test for every activity I love.

And although I’ll still be testing with my meter, it will be nice to see my levels on a screen all the time, all day…

 If the word “Errday” puzzles you, click here

for a week! Full report later.

Happy weekend all,

Jessie