Friday, October 19, 2012

3 T1D's run a half marathon for the first time

Jill, Luke, Hank, Becky, Jen, Katie, Dave, Virtue, Julie, Erin (8 out of 10 are T1D)

Last weekend I got the pleasure of watching some of my friends from Connected in Motion run their very first half marathon in downtown Toronto. I convinced them to answer some questions for me to post on here. 

There is something so totally special about completing your first long distance race. I remember the emotions I felt when I finished my first half marathon and marathon. Those feelings are never the same as the first time. I would have loved to run this race with my friends but being there to live vicariously through them ended up being far more rewarding.

Hank, grabbing a donut "on the run" at 19km. It was his only request.

HANK:

1. What are your regular diabetes therapies? insulin pump, CGM, injections?
Insulin pump

2. What was your BG plan going into the half marathon and did you follow through with it?

Wanted to make sure I was a little higher, around 12.0mmol/l (216mg/dl)... but that didn't happen.. instead I was 6.5mmol/l (117mg/dl) before the race.. still ok.. but would have liked that buffer..

3. What did you carry with you on the run? BG meter, gels, glucose tabs, nutrition? 
meter, tube of dex4, and two tubes of liquid dex4.

4.  How did you finish BG wise?
finished the race with a 7.8mmol/l (140mg/dl).. after eating several donuts, an apple, a banana, and drinking gatorade all along the race.


5.  So do you think you were successful managing your diabetes? 
Partially successful... I started going low around the 11km mark... I didn't test I just drank dex and kept going.. but I kept going low throughout the rest of the race.

6. What would you improve (if anything) for next time? Will there BE a next time?

I think I'd wear a CGM for the next race... and I'd also cut my breakfast bolus back.

7. Did you learn anything new about yourself and/or diabetes?

Not really.

8. Overall, did you enjoy it?

I did enjoy it a great deal.. just need to do more training to get my legs in better shape for long distances like that

I saw Trevor a few times during the race and he never stopped smiling! At 17km no less!

TREVOR:


1. What are your regular diabetes therapies? insulin pump, CGM, injections?
Currently I use injections to manage my diabetes. Levemir and NovoRapid are my drugs of choice! 

2. What was your BG plan going into the half marathon and did you follow through with it?
As with most extreme exercise, a basal cut in the morning (as the race started at 8:30am) by 30%, which is the same for any strenuous activity (like canoe-tripping!). I ate regular breakfast (early) and then ate a granola bar about half hour before the race. I bloused normally for the breakfast and 50% for the granola bar. I checked before the race started and carried my meter in my pocket (just in case). I tend to go by feel during an actual race (based on how I’ve done in training, where I would test more regularly). My BG before was 6.8mmol/l (122mg/dl) and after was 4.8mmol/l (86mg/dl). A little low, but expected. I ate and energy bar and then had some lunch post-race!

3. What did you carry with you on the run? BG meter, gels, glucose tabs, nutrition? 
BG meter (just in case), Dex4 (tube), granola bar, and 3 energy bars (small). I have enough on me to not rely on the Gatorade stations and energy gel giveaways, but will gladly use if needed! I do rely on the water stations, as I have never run with water before. I have thought about it, but I simply haven’t tried it yet. I also make sure I carry my ID and health card and I always ensure my medic alert is on.

4.  How did you finish BG wise?
Start – 6.8 Finish 4.8 ->I expected it to be a little low post-race, but overall I was very pleased with how I did on race day.

5.  So do you think you were successful managing your diabetes?
Yes. With all the practice and experimenting with running and every other sport I have tried, I feel as though I have a winning formula that works for me . . . for now. As you know, I am always weary of changes occurring with diabetes which would force me to change my formula. As with anything it takes some experimenting and asking the right questions to others (diabetes team and friends) during training so it’s not a surprise on race day.

6. What would you improve (if anything) for next time? Will there BE a next time?
Of course there will be a next time!! Ottawa 2013 anyone?! smile I would include the extra carbs near the end of the race (like near the 16th/17th km) in order to keep the BGs up. Otherwise I feel I ran a comfortable race. I need to massage out my ITB post-runs and post-exercise so that I avoid the dreaded runner’s knee (which I suffered from this race at the 18th km!).

7. Did you learn anything new about yourself and/or diabetes?
At the race I re-discovered my love for running. I didn’t really run until 2007 when I picked it up in the summer realizing it was an amazing stress reliever. Since then I’ve kept it up as often as I can and I still get the same stress relief I did when I started. Thinking back about the race, I can’t remember a single moment where I wished I was doing something else. Looking at some of the pictures that some CIM peeps took during the race, I could see the look of enjoyment in the way I was smiling. Totally stress-free smile

I took this one with my iphone while riding beside them on my bike. About 8km.

8. Overall, did you enjoy it?
I had an amazing time on Sunday. Despite the crazy early morning, having played trampoline dodgeball the day before for 2 hours (hello tired muscles!) and the rain at the start of the race, I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face the entire time. The CIM love from everyone who cheered and ran was definitely felt. The signs were hilarious and knowing we had our friends cheering us on made finishing that much easier! In the post-days recovery my body was a little sore (I didn’t know my Quads could feel that sore!) and I did manage to hurt my knee with what they like to call runner’s knee (how appropriate!). Nothing a little physio and some rest won’t help fix. I’m so glad I chose to run wearing the CIM green proud, and I will gladly do it again. On an additional note – a huge congrats to Hank and Luke for completing their first half-marathons too! I couldn’t pick two better dudes to share our first half-marathon with! It was also fun to meet up with a fellow CIMer I had not met yet – Sarah P – at the 11km mark during the race. Best way to introduce ourselves and then discuss our history’s and lives with diabetes. . .during a half-marathon!

Beauty finish BG!


LUKE:

1. What are your regular diabetes therapies? insulin pump, CGM, injections?
I have been on a Medtonic Paradigm pump since Jan 2011. I use a CGM mostly to help figure out what my sugars are doing if I am having issues going low or high for non obvious reasons. Like when I started running in the spring and was going low 18 to 24 hrs after excercise

2. What was your BG plan going into the half marathon and did you follow through with it?
I didn't really have a BG plan other than hoping not to go low or high durning the half. I woke up the morning of the half at 4:30am with a BG of 17mmol/l (306mg/dl). I bolused to correct. At 6:30am I was 15.0mmol/l (270mg/dl) and I knew I had to have soemthing for breakfast so I had an apple, 2 slices of rye toast, some hashbrowns, 2 slices of ham, a small glass of orange juice and a small glass of 2% milk. At 7:15am I set a temp basel of 60% of my normal rate for 5 hours. I put in a CGM on Friday for the half, but it failed Saturday afternoon. I didn't bring an extra sensor so that didn't go as planned. I put my meter in my fuel belt along with the blood letting device (that sounds better than pokey thing haha) and some test strips loose in the pouch. I stopped at km 8 to test my BG where some awesome CIM folk (you and Jill) where cheering me on. After learning that test strips don't work when they are loose in a pouch, you took out your meter and let me use it. Result was 6.5mmol/l (117mg/dl). Thanks again Scully for that.


3. What did you carry with you on the run? BG meter, gels, glucose tabs, nutrition? 
I had 80 carbs worth of Dex 4 in my fuel belt. After my 8 km BG,I decided to have a gatorade at every water station to maintain my BG. I got ticked when one of the stations only had water, so at the next I had 2 gatorades. I figured on using the Dex 4 only if I went low. I also had two 10 ounce water botlles on my fuel belt. I started to drink those around km 13,just to get rid of the weight. At km 18 or 19, Jill and Becky were cheering me on again. I took one tube of Dex 4 out and gave them my fuel belt. I was wearing it over my shoulder at that time and it was bothering me. I had it on my waist at the start of the half, but it kept sliding down, I thought it was going to pull my shorts off so that's why I looped it over my shoulder

4.  How did you finish BG wise?
My BG was 6.4mmol/l (115mg/dl) at the finish, pretty sweet. But, 90 mins later when I was going to have lunch, my sugar was 15mmol/l (270mg/dl).

5.  So do you think you were successful managing your diabetes? 
Yep

6. What would you improve (if anything) for next time? Will there BE a next time?
Of course there wil be a next time smile


Next time I hope that my CGM will work. I would like to see what my sugar does on a 21 km run. Also a CGM would help me catch a post race BG spike and bolus to correct. More training would be benificial. After 3 days I am still feeling the effects of the run. Guess it lets me know that I am alive haha.

7. Did you learn anything new about yourself and/or diabetes?
I learned that I can do a 21 km run in under 3 hrs. I am still in shock at that time. Now I am thinking how fast could I run a half if I actually trained for it. I learned that it is so mcuh easier to run knowing that you have people there cheering you on. It was very uplifting seeing my friends along the way rooting for me and my other friends who ran. I also learned that I have the best friends anyone could ask for. I learned that I can run without having my BG drop. Well it may of dropped but I never felt any symptoms of a low. I relearned that I can do anything I want if I am serious about it. I think I have all but killed that voice in my head that in the past has told me that "I can't do this or I can't do that". 
I can do this and I can do that, so there!


Luke and Hank at the finish chute. LOVE THEM!

8. Overall, did you enjoy it?
I was a bit nervous waiting for the race to start but once I got moving I was feeling good. It was a hard run, physically. I threw up in my mouth a little once (you can delete that if you want Scully). Both my legs wanted to cramp up around the 14 km mark when I started walking. I thought the cramps would get worse when I started to run, but the cramps went away when I did run, so that was a relief. Somewhere between 15 km and 17 km I got emotional and almost started to cry twice. It just came on all of a sudden. When it passed the second time the feeling to cry never came back. I caught up to Hank with less than a km to go. I asked him if he had enough left to sprint in the last 300m and he said he did. Hank didn't lie. I think I kept up for the first 50m then Hank started to break away. It would have been cool to cross the finish together, but now I have a goal for next time, keep up with Hank!

I did enjoy it. Just proving to myself that I can go 21kms without dying is huge, Awesome, Fantastic. I don't know how to describe it really. It is definitely worth the pain I have been feeling since the run.



This is probably the most profound statement ever. 


It was a pleasure to be there chasing my friends around on my bike with my camera. It was an extremely long drive home in the traffic and a crazy early morning to get to Toronto on time. But it was worth it. I've done so many races and know the impact of seeing people you know cheering you on. I didn't want to miss out on sharing in my friends' first half marathons! Thank you guys!

You did amazing! You should all be proud of yourselves!

The general consensus? You Can Do This!

8 comments:

  1. Wow!! Awesome post Scully. I completely agree with wanting to be out there running when friends are running but yes, it is nice to be the cheering section sometimes too.

    I love the photos but really enjoyed the interviews. I can't believe the different approaches people take to running, eating, drinking gatorade en route and managing blood sugar. Shocking how different we all are.

    I really need to meet some of these awesome folks. Any of them out there running Niagara Falls on Sunday? I'll keep my eyes peeled for the green shirts.

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  2. So Cool!
    Sounds like a great experience for those running and those watching.
    I think my fav is the donut! ;)

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  3. I just love how supportive you all are of each other! I'm making it a mission in life to get up there and meet y'all one of these days.

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  4. I'd run for a donut. That might be the inspiration I've been missing...

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  5. way to go, guys! that's so awesome!

    and i love that you were there to cheer them on. i'm sure it meant a lot to them. :)

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  6. I'm not much of an athlete at all, but since finding your blog I have found it really inspiring! And a bit of a coincidence, have come home from a weekend away where I undertook my first long distance walk/race Hope you don't mind but I wrote about it in my blog and mentioned yours since the topic was similar :)

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  7. GREAT post!
    Once again, so inspired by others with Diabetes!
    Thanks for doing this post and interviewing them about their experiences with the race.

    I literally cried (and was SO INSPIRED) by the poster that said..."18 years with T1 Diabetes is way harder than this...".

    SO TRUE...and again, SO INSPIRING and MOTIVATING!!!

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  8. You really had a great time there (photos don't lie). Despite the odds, you've showed us how to live and enjoy life. Having been diabetic for 5 years, what you did was truly inspiring to me.

    Don't know why Google has brought me here while I was searching for an actos lawsuit info. Glad I did.

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