Thursday, June 7, 2012

Twin Cities Tour de Cure (Part 2)

My alarm went off at 3-(way too early)-45 am. I snoozed it. (accidentally turned it off). Then I hear a knock at the door of the room in Heather's place that I'm sleeping. It's 4:15am and we had planned to be out of the house at 4:30. Ah crap.

Smooth move Scully. No time for anything except to quickly throw on my cycling stuff and whip on out of there. Thankfully in the Leide household, coffee is a staple and even better, I was greeted with a lender travel mug already full. I'm now going on two nights with 7 hours sleep total. BUT I have coffee! It was a choice I had to make between coffee and breakfast. Forget about breakfast, I'll just eat a Clif bar. I'm not exactly known for my keen attention to nutrition. Especially not at 4am in the morning. Remember the chastising I received the night before at the VIP dinner because I don't get up at 3am, eat and go back to bed? Yeah.

Jeff and Gary
We arrived at the park as people slowly started showing up bright eyed and bushy tailed. There wasn't much time before we were groggily ready to ride and lined up. All the red riders at the front but I snuck in behind since I wasn't wearing my red rider jersey. The start of the 100 mile long tour was mostly on narrow recreation trails. It was very pretty and the weather was cool and crisp. It was a bit difficult to maintain a comfortable pace since there were just so many riders. We all caught up with each other at the first aid station. This was like a first class aid station! I grabbed a few snacks for my jersey. The best part about this spot was the Cafe that glittered like a sign from jebus to me! I had another choice... wait in line for the bathroom (sorry, RESTroom) or buy coffee. I'm sure you can guess which one I chose. COFFEE! (again). For the record if you have learned anything about me in the past two posts, I am very motivated by coffee.

Captain Jane of the Pancremaniacs!

I am a multi-tasker supreme on my bike

Scott all smiles in the first 20 miles

From here we rode together for awhile. Scott was in wonderment watching me cycle and drink coffee at the same time. I didn't see anything weird about it, I do it all the time. I wanted to ride with Scott and Heather the whole way but for all intents and purposes (and no bragging here), it was difficult to maintain a slower than natural pace. Jeff agreed and we eventually took the lead. We hit some rather nice rollers as we were now out on the roads. Yes, I totally hunkered down and sprinted past a big group of folks but that was because Jeff and I were talking and I didn't want strangers hearing my life story. Also, yes, I didn't know the rollers were coming and I totally spent myself sprinting. Oops. By the time we hit the next aid station I practically had all my clothes off before hitting the port-a-potty since the decision at the last stop was coffee over toilet.

This is my new favourite ride fuel. It's the perfect mix of salty and sweet and it has protein in it! I loved them so much I went to Costco and bought a huge case of them before I came home. Nothing like discovering something special that is actually MADE in St.Paul to boot.

Jeff and I rode the next 80-some miles together. We stopped at most of the aid stations for water and snacks. I was disappointed that the further we went the crappier the aid got. Less and less fueling options. Sure I could have carried a backpack worth of things but I didn't because of what was going to be available. Near the end there wasn't much left to choose from except for mini Clif bars and the volunteers were exhausted and bored (as would I be by that point). This was my only complaint. Have more supplies available to those of us riding the 100 miles when we hit the later aid stations and really need it. Other than that, the scenery was beautiful. The parks and the trails and the neighbourhoods were just amazing. The routes were really well marked (IMO), we only got turned around once and I'm sure it was from delirium by that point. And the weather stayed perfect the whole day!

We talked endlessly about everything. When traffic and trail called for it we tucked in and sucked wheels. We watched each other's blood sugars and were sure to make mental notes of where we were and how to manage it. That's the reassuring thing about doing something like riding 100 miles with another diabetic. I like being able to "think out loud" with D management when the other person totally gets it.

So how'd it go? Well, 100 miles is a long way. We took it pretty easy though which made it enjoyable. I never felt I pushed it too hard. I was able to go at a consistent pace the whole way. The incredible support of the red riders was amazing. I was wearing my TT1 kit but the amount of "Go Red Rider!" cheers that Jeff got was inspiring. I'm looking forward to wearing my Red Rider jersey. I really felt amazing the whole ride. Of course near the end I was getting tired and I felt a little sloppy but over-all I can't believe how great it was. My crotch fared well, probably from taking frequent breaks.

It was an absolute DREAM day. So much that whenever I tested at an aid station I turned to Jeff and said, "WTF?!" I just couldn't believe my own eyes. Never in my diabetic life have I had such good numbers. I set a -40% temp basal rate 1 hour before at the same time I ate a Clif bar and bolused 1/2 for it.

Here goes some BG magic: 
Wake up: 3.4 (61) Pre breakfast: 9.3 (167) Ride start: 9.4 (169), 6.1 (110), 6.3 (113), 6.2 (112), 6.4 (115), 3.7 (66), 3.3 (60), Upon finishing: 5.6 (100), after chocolate milk: 7.1 (128)

That's an average BG of 6.2mmol/l (112mg/dl)
Take THAT no-eating-breakfast-at-3am-and-going-back-to-sleep!
For real YO! jaw-dropping mega surprise to me. The 3.7 was barely noticeable but I caught it early. The 3.3 was less than a mile to the finish line. (or the "done" line as Scott likes to call it). And that low sucked balls. I had some Dex care of Jeff and slowly trotted in. I know these lows were from laziness too. I was tired of eating the same stuff near the end. I'm pretty sure I'll NEVER be able to re-create that masterpiece again so I'll take it while I can!

I kept track of what I ate also:
Full size Clif bar at start 40g, 1 gel 24g, 1 banana 24g, 4 salty nut rolls 40g, 3 mini Clif bars 45g, 4 glucose tablets 16g, Star Wars candies 20g (?).  I ate about 200g carbs. NOT much at all, but I did my best. Fueling on the go has always been hard for me. I am aware that being on the bike for 7-some hours demands more than that.

Also, a few hours post ride I set a -20% basal reduction for most of the evening and throughout the night. This kept me steady from dropping. However the day after I had A LOT of lows, I should have kept the TBR running in retrospect.

Avg BG: 6.2mmol/l
Carbs: 200g (far too low)
Avg speed: 24.8km/h (kinda slow)
Distance: 163.3km
Ride time: 6:34
Avg HR: 155bpm
Calories burned: 5695cal (holy moly feed me a pizza!)

Jeff. Stuffing his face with GU blocks or something. Having a low in the car after the ride. He pulled over, don't worry. And then I snapped pictures of his chipmunk face. All in good fun!

Scott's double grilled cheese sammiches post ride. A meal well earned!

After Jeff finished packing his stuff. I learned from hanging out with lots of diabetics that BG testing is contagious. "Like yawning" Scott says. It's true. Only diabetics know this, so get your own thing to do. :)

The next morning out for breakfast at a super awesome cafe. Heather and I were talking about how great we felt. Next time we start to hurt on a ride, we're just going to keep on riding because it seems the longer the ride the better we feel. 

Scott amusing me at the mall before dropping me off at the airport.

It was one of the best weekends of my life. Hands down. Heather and Scott are two of the most amazing DOC folks and I couldn't ask for better friends. And Jeff, my DBFF, Diabestie! I couldn't have asked for a better riding partner and ear to talk off. It would have been really long without all that farting and conversation. Heather did a phenomenal job at organizing a huge group of Pancremaniacs and now I can proudly wear my jersey at home. Also for inviting me into her home, Heather you're GREAT! I got the opportunity to meet a lot of pretty awesome and caring people and all for a good cause. Nikki is a hoot and I can't wait to come back and visit again. Scott... your gentle and caring kindness is hard to not love. Thank you for allowing us into your life for a weekend as well as hauling my bike and I to and from the airport. Oh and for putting up with the "tour de coffee" in St.Paul.

Words cannot express the impact this weekend had on me.

Photo credit: Jeff
Jeff, Heather, Scott and myself. 
The DOC brought us together

And I'll be back. I signed up for the Twin Cities Marathon in October!


  1. Awesome post, as expected! I had a fantastic weekend with you and the other Pancremaniacs.

    It's funny that we rode for 6:34, since we were on the road for 8:06. I would say that I feel like a slacker except that we rode 100+ miles and felt awesome doing it.

    And D-A-M-N! I'm still envious of your BG mojo on the ride.

    We're going to have to do this again.

  2. Great report.

    Incidentally, I'm just like you in that I don't do the breakfast at 3am back to bed thing. I'm a Clif bar 15 minutes before the marathon kind of guy, and while I know it's not the best, it's the rut I'm in!

  3. 1. It's not a Scully post if there isn't at least one poop story.
    2. Doesn't it look like Heather and Scott are wearing a tandem bike (shirt) in that last picture.
    3. Did Scott forget the sunscreen?

  4. Whether in TT1 kit or Red Rider jersey, you are a RED RIDER .. no need to sneak into the lead-out wave next time. Thanks for riding the Twin Cities TdC. Toby

  5. Scully, you are way too kind. It was SO awesome having you in town for a few days and getting to hang out with you. Seriously, one of the highlights of my summer so far.

    I'm in awe of your pedaling skills, both with the coffee AND the camera! You and Mather rock. :-)

    And Sara, yes, I forgot to put sunscreen on my face. Was pretty pink (even more than usual) on Saturday night, but was looking almost normal (or as close as I can get to normal) by Sunday.


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