Sentimental Diabetic Drivel... Documenting life of a T1 athlete
Tuesday, June 18, 2013
I Challenge Diabetes Century Group Ride
I hate how the weather can make or
break plans. One minute it was calling for sporadic showers but nothing
substantial. The next it was calling for a downpour. Either way, it ended up
being nothing that was predicted.
I was scheduled to do a ride with a
fantastic group owned and operated by one Chris Jarvis. Pro Type1 rowing
Olympian and adventure seeker extraordinaire. "I Challenge Diabetes" is his non-profit organization. It was really just a group of us getting together to do some cycling. We
were meeting in Toronto to ride to Burlington. About a 50-60km ride so nothing
all that long. Some of them were riding back to Toronto but I was planning to
just ride to my car nearby.
Generally if the skies are opened for
torrential downpour I’ll opt to wait out the weather or not ride at all. I
literally waited until the last minute before deciding to go. I had trepidation
as I was collecting all my things the night before. I had to get out to Toronto
so if I was going, there was no turning back. I hopped on the train with anxiety
in my belly. Anxiety in the form of coffee and forced oatmeal that had my
stomach in knots the whole train ride. I had no idea what I was getting myself
into. A group of people I've never met with bikes. I had no idea if I would be
discouraged and overwhelmed by a fast pace or hanging out with the slower folks
on big ‘ol mountain bikes. It was going to rain, no doubt about that, but at
least it was warm. I can handle being soaked as long as I'm warm.
Pre-ride chitty chat while hopelessly staying dry under the highway. Photo courtesy of ICD.
There were 6 of us in the fast group.
4 guys, 2 girls. We rode in single file because it was pouring rain and we were
in the city. The roads were messy with pot holes, traffic lights and chocolate
milk puddles up to our pedals. I rode at the front for a rather large portion
which was nerve wrecking. It was hard to see with the rain and we couldn't hear
each other. It seemed we were all experienced road riders so we kept the pace
somewhat moderate but slow enough to not lose anyone. Hand signals were a plenty. I slammed into a pothole
at one point that felt really bad on my back tire. Not long after that we hit
some unsurfaced road where I got a pinch flat on my front tire. We changed it
out quickly and I was grateful that we had a support car with a full sized
pump to make things easier. I guess I should start carrying a change of tube ;). Big time thanks to the guys having tools. I was still worried about my back tire though.
Drying out on the pier
Upon arriving in Burlington the rain
finally stopped and the sun came out. We grabbed a coffee and socialized on the
pier drying out and waiting for the rest of the group to arrive. A quick (and amazing) lunch
break full of fresh fruits and veggies had us re-fueled. Some layers came off and rain jackets
got packed away. Wet clothes were strewn about the sunny hillside. Some of the cyclists were riding back to Toronto and, well, I
am so easily peer pressured so I joined them. I couldn't help it, the sun was
shining and I wanted more riding. Not to mention I was having a good time with
some great new people.
The whole group. Too bad some folks chickened out due to the rain because it turned out to be a spectacular day! (photo courtesy of ICD)
I love this creative photo Chris took. (photo courtesy of ICD)
Within the first 5k I could feel my
back tire was majorly lacking in air pressure. We stopped and filled it up but by the next day the tire was completely flat. The ride back was much more enjoyable in the
hot sunny weather. We were flying along at a very reasonable pace. Faster than
I've ever been able to maintain and it felt super easy. Perhaps because it was
mostly flat? Probably.
Oh and the diabetes, how could I
forget about the diabetes? This was a cycling trip planned BECAUSE we all have
diabetes. This just goes to show how much a part of our lives Diabetes has when
we are able to ignore it’s existence. We all did great. I, personally, finished
the day with near perfect BGs. No highs, no lows, just….. a perfect win! There
were no other D’mergencies amongst the rest of the folks either aside from a
slight low or two. We did get time to sit around and talk about it as we often
do. I'm glad I'm not the only one that doesn't trust those pesky insulin pens
to deliver a precise amount.
Yeah I know, you don't even have to say it! This is me on no sleep
I'm glad I chose to go despite not
wanting to ride in the rain. I would have seriously regretted it if I skipped
out. Sure I would have gotten some actual sleep but it was a small price to pay
for a good day on the bike. The people I was with made the wet suffering a team
effort and we were rewarded with a beautiful day in the end. We were lucky to
have two support vehicles which made us feel safe and comfortable out there.
Major thanks to those drivers, major. The rubber side always stayed down.
The "fast" group on our way back to Toronto. Loving it! (photo courtesy of ICD)