Diabetics who run Marathons!
Latest Activity: 15 hours ago
Started by Neil. Last reply by Neil 15 hours ago.
Started by Jane. Last reply by Jane Jul 13.
Started by 34seconds. Last reply by Mike M Jul 8.
Great conversation going on here!
Personally, I wanted my BGL around 160-180 on MDI when starting a long run or race, but on the pump, as Jerry mentioned, I seem to have better numbers when I start a little lower and reduce my basal ahead of time. That having been said, I don't get concerned if I see a number ~200 when racing as I'm confident it'll level out. Regarding competitive exercise - I think most runners I know that race at all are at the least competitive with their own historical times. I've been in a few local races where I'm racing head to head for a podium spot, and I don't think I am running any harder than when I'm just going for time.
The martial arts school I trained at was not competitive. We read several interesting books, "No Contest" by Alfie Kohn and "Rambo and the Dalai Llama" that discussed the notion in more detail. I've tried it playing tennis but don't play that much but it changes the game in an interesting way. I'm always racing myself with my Garmin but don't really worry about other people, except maybe at the end of the race.
Part of the reason I like to shoot for flatter BG through a race is that I love to eat at the end of it!
I think there is a whole range of competitiveness possible, it's not something you either are or are not. I agree that we are all individuals, and even as individuals, each of us could handle our diabetes challenges in more than one way. I don't think anyone chooses to compete with super high blood sugars because they have to. I think they've found something that works, to some degree, and they are reluctant to change. Of course, I've decided to try to keep my blood sugars closer to normal, but at the start of any race there might be some reason my blood sugar was over 300. I would be figuring out what to do about it, but it happens.
I don't want to give anyone the impression that I have my own body figured out, let alone anyone else's.
Which gets back to that side-stitch thing. It was an idea that is sometimes the solution. Sometimes running with something in your stomach can bring those on, but it's not the only thing.
I ran into 2 people at Chicago, my aunt's friend, T1 who's done bunches of marathons, Ironman event, etc. and he was like "how's your sugar" when I was testing and I was like "I little high, 180" as I was bouncing off the walls w/ adrenaline, etc. and he said "oh, I'm like 300 or so" as he ate a banana! I think he bolused, fell over 4x (he has eye issues too, and the course still has potholes, manhole covers, etc. to trip over... but still, of course, kicked my ass at the race. I suggested he check the group out and had a bit of a chat with him but he sort of does his thing. I saw an Insulindependence guy who also asked me where my BG was in the paddock and I was right around 130 or so and his was also 300. I'm sure he blew me off the road too but I have to wonder about getting into a pattern of gonzo training to do distance running seriously while cranking your BG up all the time? MAybe it's no big deal an dI should chill out about it and I'd be able to run better but a few of the runs where sites pulled out and stuff I felt like crap as my BG ran up.
These are some very interesting discussions going on. I can see a progression going on in exercise and diabetes management. Years ago I was one of those runners who wanted to have a pre-race blood sugar check of 180-220, or I would worry about going low. I was on long-acting insulin at the time.
Of course, even before that, I would just eat or drink something, not knowing where my blood sugar was, because I had no way to test it, but I digress.
After getting a pump, I had more control of insulin-on-board, and I could confidently start a run with my blood sugar close to normal.
And that was my advice to others, to try to get and stay close to normal blood sugar during a run.
There were, and probably still are, people out there doing things like disconnecting their pumps, making sure their blood sugar was over 200, etc., out of fear of going low. I thought I, at least had gotten past that.
Now in this discussion, I see a couple of you talking about the "spike" after eating a gel. I've been eating gels for years, and never worried about it. Before I had a CGM, I had no way to even know that was happening. Now that I do have a CGM, I see it, but I also see the blood sugar dropping back into range.
I suppose it's time for me to move on. I need a new model of how it should work. I need to try to keep from going through ups and downs, try to smooth it out.
Concerning side-aches, one of the most frequent causes is extra weight tugging on the diaphragm. Have you eaten more or are you drinking more fluids lately? Do you notice the aches starting after you drink?
Mine were like muscle cramps in my calves. I think for the rib "stitch" cramps, if you breathe in and push your abdomen out and in when you exhale it can help that? That tidbit is rattling around my head from grade school?
I totally disagree with not bolusing before a race, I agree that you don't want the IOB going on but I think that eating beforehand is important, not a ton, and having good BG can help too. I think it's a lot harder to run when my BG is high. I know a lot of people routinely do it but I don't think you have to? I try to have what Jay Cutler had mentioned, like 120-160 as where I try to be. It's about balance? Part of being safe is being able to run strongly and perceive how you are feeling physically and I think that running up really high makes me feel like garbage so I try to avoid it.
The Chicago Marathon had *tons* of Gatorade too, plus I had other provisions. One of the times I had a "pull out" of my infusion set I had really severe cramps and, since I was already having cramps, I figured I didn't want to run high and risk double cramps or cramps squared? I bolused in a half marathon once too, I'd tested "right before I left" and it was lower than I thought it would be so I slugged down some OJ and rode up, again 1/3 of the rx'ed bolus amount and the gatorade prevented crashing. I figure if I'm going to eat, a whiff of insulin will facilitate the energy being processed more efficiently?
I never bolus while running. I time my gels so I won't need too. The few times I have bolused before a run I ended up very low a few miles down the road.
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