Sunday, June 26, 2011

End of week, start anew

The last week was definitely an exciting one during Insulindependence University.  The Captains were able to hear speakers such as Anne Peters, Paul Madden, Cliff Scherb, Bill Polonsky and many others.  While the staff was always busy setting up the next event, I was able to catch a few of the speakers.  Most were wonderful with many combined years of diabetic experience, so insightful and knowledgeable.  The one I was able to catch the most of was Cliff Scherb, a New York based triathlon coach who also has diabetes and has finished an Ironman in 9:07.

Cliff's major sticking point was how to manage diabetes during and post exercise.  While I won't get into most of it (mainly because I'm tired from the week and want to go to bed right now) it was like light bulbs were going off in my head the entire time.  Cliff was able to tell the group many things I had thought about trying but never have, mainly because of my own fear.

Frankly, it's really difficult managing the diabetes during exercise and most endocrinologist simply don't have the understanding when it comes to management during exercise.  While not a doctor, Cliff's main point (beyond diet and how to train) is shutting off the basal rate (continuous insulin in the pump) and using a limited bolus to maintain good blood glucose control.  Normally I reduce the basal and carb load (no bolus) to remain in good control.  Since hearing Cliff speak I have only really had two workouts but both times it worked which is exciting.  I will experiment more and get back on this.

For now though it's bed time, get up early for a good bike session in the morning then it's off to the ADA Conference (American Diabetes Conference) which just so happens to be in beautiful San Diego this week.

O ya and I have a 5k next week in San Diego.  Not a big race or anything but always exciting!

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Insulindependence University

After what I would call a really successful week of training this next week (starting today) is Insulindependence University. (Actually I'm typing this out on my phone waiting to check a few more people in from the airport). As my blog says, a life lived through the trials and triumphs of diabetes through athletics, most of what I do in life is related to the world through diabetes and sports. Insulindependence University however is the coming together of many people in the same boat looking for the same answers. The situation makes me realize I am not alone but together with an entire community of support. Although on the support end of it I know I will come away with more answers as well.

The "captains" all come together for this program to learn more about themselves, their diabetes and how to better their diabetes management through athletics. Many use triathlons (as I do), others distance running and some the great outdoors. It's always funny being around a large group of diabetics because someone is always checking their blood sugar or sharing a story. We all are the same, yet all different. Coming from many different parts of the country to San Diego in order to learn more about diabetes.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

LA Tri Series - June 11 2011

On Saturday (June 11, 2011) I competed in the Olympic Distance LA Tri Series event #3.  Besides the race company being completely unorganized and disfunction, I felt I had a great race.  I wish I could have posted a preview of the race earlier in the week but with the new job being completely busy I didn't think much of the race until the few days before.

After the not-so-fast drive to Los Angeles from North County San Diego with Jamie, we had a pre-race meal at a local Sushi restaurant which of course ended up spiking my blood sugar a little too much.  This is one of the reasons I like eating long before bed the night before a race, it allows me any diabetic adjustments I need.

Bed early... then race morning.  God do I love it!  Nothing beats the adrenaline and pumped up feeling of a race.  Luckily, unlike most diabetics I have never had weird blood sugar spikes or lows from this.  I believe a lot of that comes from the many years playing baseball with the 'betes then transitioning into the triathlon community.

Wake up: 119... Excellent... Gluten-free sandwiches all around...

Off to the race... After finding out the directions from the race company were wrong, my navigator (Jamie) got us to the race another way thankfully.  I registered (I know, what company does that race morning) and set up my stuff in transition then sat in the car to wait.

Blood sugar: 134.... Upon leaving my pump in transition I had a gel and Pure Fit bar.

Right before getting in the water I had another gel (I get overly scared of the low during the swim) and grabbed a piece of gum from Jamie.

Swim:  I feel that I stayed completely calm, one of the things I have struggled with in past triathlons.  I actually ended up liking it, I kept telling myself it was fun and this was a big part of having a good triathlon.  My sighting during the race went much better as well.  As the video below shows I got tired during the last few moments of the swim (probably the last 300 meters) but overall, it went well.
Time: 31:31 (just over 2 minute pace)

Transition 1: Couldn't get the wet suit off, annoying.  Besides that it was fine, including putting the pump back on.
Time: 2:31

Bike: The first part of the bike was a little slow.  Still disoriented from the swim but the disorientation was much better than ever before.  The swim training is even helping the bike.  What slowed me down at the beginning the most?  Trying to take my blood sugar that's what!

Next race, the meter will be planted firmly on my drop bars.  If I have the meter on the bike it will be much easier to take.  In the past I have had it on there and it needs to go back on!  When I finally took my blood sugar it was 260.  High, too high but I didn't get low during the swim.  Quick correction and off.

A hilly, challenging course overall with three total laps.  The roads were awful but hey, it's Los Angeles.

Time: 1:17 (18.09 pace)  I can lower this... No worries...

Transition 2: 0:58.... Ya under a minute... Enough said... Domination!

Run: Off on my 10k run (6.2 miles).  The first part was basically a trail run.  Not a good course but it got better, running near an airport.  Up and down hills.  Much like the bike course, a little challenging but good.

Blood sugar: 210...

Run continued, a little cramping but while running with a man named Bill who told me to lengthen out my stride it all went away.  This is why I love triathlon.  Even while competing he was telling me how to better myself.  Unlike my last Olympic distance I didn't cramp, taking salt tablets on the bike.

Even while going through the "dark points" of the run I kept going hard.  I was pretty happy with this too.

Time: 47:00 (7:34 pace)

Overall time: 2:39

Overall, my blood sugars were a little high but the race went well.  I was very happy with it, the biggest thing I can do is lower my first transition time.  My swim will keep getting better which will allow my bike to get better from the start.  Training wise I need to do more brick workouts (bike plus run) to learn to run off the bike with the heavy legs.

Jamie, as always was the hero of the race.  Getting up early and taking some great film.  Thanks Jamie.

Next thing: decide by Wednesday if I am signing up for the Orangeman Half-Iron Distance race in September (the rate goes up Wednesday) in Orange County... Should I?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New Changes

Well I finally did it, signed up for a triathlon club.  The San Diego Triathlon club to be exact.  After a big move down to Solana Beach in the north County San Diego area this past week I was able to start riding with the group this last Saturday. 

I met the group for a great 47-mile ride through the hills of the north county and back down highway 101 on Saturday.  The entire time each member of the group seemed was so encouraging and happy that it will definitely be a great team to ride/train with.

On the training plan for Sunday was a 14 mile run which I completed by running from my apartment up to Jamie's grandfathers house in Carlsbad where she met me so the three of us could go to lunch together.  During both workout's of the weekend I was able able to control my blood sugars perfectly which is also encouraging.  Although it has taken some serious time, I feel I am now able to really control the blood sugars during training both long and short.

After a short brick workout (bike+run) this morning, tomorrow calls for master's swimming.  That means a new group to train with in the morning in Solana Beach.   

Next up, the LA Tri Series Olympic Distance Triathlon on June 11th.  Also, registration opened for the Las Vegas Rock-n-roll Half-Marathon today!

Couldn't be more excited. 

But once you become active in something, something happens to you. You get excited and suddenly you realize you count.
Studs Terkel