Sunday, November 21, 2010

Shedd Park Cyclocross Report

photo by someone in the J. White clan, maybe
 Jamie he was done well before me!
So the guys on the team decided that for this weeks race we should all ride in the same category so we could represent! Jamie, Glen, David, Rob and I all lined up in our black Racer-X jerseys and shivered until the race promoter blew the whistle. High temps for the day were scheduled for 39 degrees, but it was more like 34 when we started at 9:45am! It was chilly but managed to bundle up enough to stay warm until I got in a couple mile pre-ride and a warm up lap on the course.

This was my first race in a while (about a month) and my first on the new Omnipod insulin pump, and Dexcom CGM (continuous glucose monitor). I had in stalled my pod last night on my left under arm

Friday, November 12, 2010

My new tools...

Here is my new insulin pump PDM, and CGM (continuous glucose monitor). The PDM, on the left, has a built in Freestyle glucose meter that I check my blood sugar with. The CGM is on the left and shows current blood sugar, trend arrows, and a 1-24 hour graph tracking my blood sugar. I only need to carry the PDM when I am going to bolus insulin. Bolus insulin is insulin given to correct a high blood sugar or to cover crabs eaten. The PDM sends the basal programs to the pod, and the pod will remember it on its own. Basal insulin is the small about per hour of

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Doctor report and new tools!

I have been working a lot and have not had a ton of time to keep up on the blog, or ride for that matter! But alas, I have much to tell! Mostly on the agenda is a report about my appointment at the Joslin Diabetes Center with my new CDE (Certified Diabetes Educator). Oh, and also I made a major change in my CGM (continuous glucose monitor) and Insulin pump..... as in I got new ones!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Catch up!.....

Not the kind I like to put on most foods...

So it has been a couple weeks since I have written a post, and in a way I am glad! Lets just say it has been a while since I last worked. 16 months to be exact. I have now been back to work for 4 weeks, and it feels great! I have a paycheck, adults to talk to, problems to solve, and time to manage!

Monday, October 11, 2010

New cross frame...

Have been working non stop since I started my new job. I do IT at the TD garden in Boston, and it is very fast paced. My sugars have been consistently low at work so an adjustment in my basal rates is imminent!

I have been working a ton, so to help work through that I ordered on of these! $200 and some change on ebay or from

Thanks to Jamie who has a spare pit bike. Yeah a spare pit bike! It must be nice to be so wicked fast (hey, I live in Boston) that companies just throw race bikes at you like that! More to come....... back to work!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Cyclocross Race in Gloucester, MA

This past weekend I was talked into doing a cyclocross race. It really wasn't that hard to talk me into it, but I did at one point a few months ago say that there was no way I would do a cross race! Mainly I didn't want to do a race because my cross bike is my commuter bike and it is a single speed. Taking a single speed cross bike to a race is kinda like taking a tooth pick to a gun fight! Alas, I was up for the challenge.

So, I have come to terms that for the most part I am the 'middle of the pack sport guy' right now, and that is ok. My fitness will improve. My goals are all focused around managing my

Monday, September 27, 2010

First Day of Work....

I have been unemployed for the past 16 months. Normally I have hiked with the dogs, and started getting ready for a bike ride by this time on most days. Today, I am installing software on my work computer.... not complaining as a job has been a long time coming. Blood sugar is running higher than normal! Transition, the four letter word for a diabetic!
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Friday, September 24, 2010

Kingdom Trails Again!

 Kingdom Trails in East Burke, VT have to be some of my favorite since moving to Boston. It's a 3 hour drive up, but is worth it! A few weeks ago the trip to Kingdom Trails was a bit of an adventure with my blood sugars, as I could not get my sugar up even though I was taking in plenty of carbs. Just one of those days!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Finding a Doctor

I may have found a Doctor. After going to see 3 endocrinologists, and 2 CDE's (Certified Diabetes Educators), and one primary care doctor since moving to Boston, I may have found the one...... but I won't know until Nov. 3rd! And, that's Ok.....

I want to try to start this entry by giving credit. I will have had diabetes for 21 years this Thanksgiving. In that amount of time you meet a lot of doctors, CDE's, specialists, pharmacists, salesmen, etc. By far, hands down the best healthcare professional I have ever had the fortune to work with is Leigh MacHaffie. She works in Colorado at a small endocrine clinic that I had the fortune of being a patient. Leigh is largely responsible for me utilizing technology to take control of my diabetes. She was a motivator for me to take care of myself and never showed any doubt that I could tackle the bike riding I wanted to do. She took all the time that I needed to make sure I understood what was happening with my pump, continuous glucose monitor (CGM), and more importantly the data that I was receiving from these tools. She even put me in touch with some semi-pro racers with Type 1 that could help me with specifics of long rides and such. After being in Boston for nearly a year, I am about ready to fly back to Colorado (with my bike) for appointments just so I can see Leigh again!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Willowdale Ride

So I haven't really been on a ride since my FOMBA adventures last week. I have been on a few hikes with the dogs, but nothing to blog about. I went for a short ride out at Willowdale today. It was about 10 miles (full loop), and it was the same course as the race on 5/21/2010, with a little extra single track at the end. Legs were not feeling that great when the ride started, it took me about a half hour before I really felt warmed up. In addition, my glucose sensors have not been real accurate in the last couple weeks, and today was no exception. I suppose this is an entirely separate issue/post, but the sensors have not been recognizing rapid or drastic changes in blood glucose, which is kinda one of the main features! I was using sensors that were a tad on the old side, so a new one will be inserted tonight for a Sunday morning calibration and hope for better results this week.

Basically how the glucose sensors works is that there is a transmitter that wirelessly transmits blood sugar data to my insulin pump. Attached to the transmitter, and inserted into my abdominal area, is a sensor. It has a tiny tube that, after insertion, lies in ythe interstitial fluid and measures blood glucose. There is a possible slight lag in the glucose readings from the interstitial fluid and actual blood glucose (blood sugar) levels, but Medtronic says 20% accuracy. That means if the sensor reading says your blood sugar is 100, and actual finger prick reading should be between 120-80 roughly.

So I started my ride at 185 mg/dl. That's a good place to start a ride, it usually drops like a rock in the first half hour for me even though I have temp basal rate set. Today I set a 55% temp basal, and I did it 1.5 hours before ride start. I normally do it 1 hour before ride start, but I am trying to work on the 'drop like a rock' blood sugars in the first half hour! My sugar stayed elevated today, even up to 209 according to the sensor 50:19 minutes into the ride. I was running a little low on energy so ate a GU. Do you really eat those? They really can't be chewed, or swallowed whole... I guess it's more like chewing gum with no dentures! I digress. So the ride was finished by 1hour 17 minutes, and sensor was still hanging at 205. I checked with the glucometer and it said 274! Ouch! I took 3 units for correction, and another 3 an hour later, and threw the sensor away and opened a new box.

All in all it was a good ride, although the 274 says why I wasn't feeling that great. I got in around 10 miles, mostly single track, and rode for about 1:17. I did take 11 minutes off my time from the race on 5/21/2010 on the same course so I was pretty pleased with that! Might have to time trial this in  the weeks to come for a good spring to fall fitness comparison!! Go ride!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Roller Coaster @ FOMBA

So I had the bike ready, the backpack packed, food & water ready and I hit the road by 6:30am. Blood sugar at wake up was 133, and my CGM said 135 which was really accurate. On the drive to the trails I got a low alarm (89) on my insulin pump. Odd.... I had already set a temp basal and had a Cliff Mini, and took bolus insulin for the carbs so I knew it wasn't low. I checked with a glucose meter and it was 190. I calibrated my CGM hoping it would be accurate by ride time. Not the case. I checked with a glucose meter again at the start of my ride and it was still 190 with CGM at about 100... I started the ride and within 45 minutes I was feeling low. I ate a Cliff Mini, and a GU 15 minutes later, but CGM said I was now trending up above 150! Grrrr.

On a bike note, I was seeing all the rocks, big roots and the lines I wanted to take. Problem was I was riding into all those obstacles head on, often nearly endo-ing into next said obstacle! It was one of those days! Blood sugar up and down and MTB skills like Jamie.... I was on a MTB Roller Coaster!

The day wouldn't get better as I would have to stop 10 miles into my planned 3 hour ride. I had a strange pain on the top oh my hand above my right wrist. I tried to shake it off (literally), and I felt something pop. After this point I couldn't grip the handlebar with any control and the pain was hardly tolerable. After navigating the rest of Lady Slipper with a couple close calls, I decided to call it a day. I couldn't squeeze a water bottle on the drive home or grip the steering wheel.

I got a total of 10 miles in out of a planned 20ish so I was bummed. I planned to finish with Fireline in both directions, and I didn't get to ride it in either direction. My blood sugar was up to 260 at this point, so I was again bummed. My pace was 1 mph faster at that point than my previous rides at FOMBA so I was headed home to soak my sorrows in an ICB (ice cold beer).

Here is my graph from the last 12 hours, you can see the roller coaster! Although not a fun one, these days will happen now and again and you need to take them with a grain of salt! I still got in an hour and some change on the bike, and I was in the forest! I also didn't die, and after an ibuprofen and a nap my hand is oddly enough feeling almost 100%! Cross bike ride to come soon and hopefully with better blood sugar and less amusement park!

Monday, August 30, 2010

29er tested...

I ended up battling traffic and made the trek to the Specialized demo ride. Glad I made it! I did two laps (they had short test ride lap setup, maybe 2-3 miles) on the carbon hardtail with Sram XX. The bike fit pretty well, but would need some proper fitting. Well, after my two laps I was sold! Not necessarily on the Specialized, but on the 29er platform. It felt fast and I was amazed we how well it went over the rocky and rooty sections. I did seem to hit my pedals in a couple corners that I don't think would have on my 26", but I did not analyze crank length or bb clearance.

Blood sugar still a little on the low side, may run a slight temp basal tonight. Good night and sweet (29er) dreams!
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Another rest day, sort of!

Blood sugar has been running on the low side for the last couple days. Not sure why. I'm on a new statin medication, but I don't think that is one of the side effects. Went on an easy 2 hour hike with the dogs (no temp nasal, but I never do for dog hikes), and was planning on hitting up the Specialized demo day at Willowdale State Forest. We'll see if I feel like plugging through traffic to get there, also need to get the sugar up! If I go test a new 29er you'll be the first to know!
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Saturday, August 28, 2010

3 hour review...

Not a bad 3 hours...
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Rest day today!

Maggie had to work, and I had a rest day planned for the most part. I took the dogs on hike at the park, but that was short and they spent most of the time swimming (didn't set a temp basal). I also moved a bunch of stuff to our new storage unit down the hall, and that took more effort than I planned. I got low a few times throughout the day (never less than 80) and probably could have avoided that with a temp basal while hiking/moving storage units. Here is my daily log. Much better day today!

Kingdom Trails 08-27-2010

So Kingdom Trails lived up to the hype! Really nice and well maintained single track. It had a few sections that had me thinking I was in Fruita, CO with a Jungle view! I will be back and hopefully sooner than later! We rode 18.9 miles (via wheel magnet) and David said we only hit a portion of the trails. Here is the GPS info:

As for the diabetes control.... I have to say it was a tough day for the blood sugar. It didn't help that Maggie and I went to a last minute BBQ/wine party at our apartment complex and stayed up until 1:30am. Nonetheless, it was an off day, maybe still feeling the effects of the 6hr race from last Saturday.

I set a temp Basal of 65% at 9:45am (ride time ended up being 11:10am) and had a breakfast of 1 peanut crunch cliff bar at 8:15am, and had plenty of water (100oz) on the 3hr drive up. Here is my daily log from the glucose sensor (you can also see it on the Glucose Logs page at 2010-08-27). After begining the ride, I fast approached a low sugar (down to 100 from 161) within the first 45 minutes, and began to mow on Clif-mini bars every 15 minutes for the next hour as the sugar would not come up. Mixed in with a full bottle of Endurox R4 (52 carbs, 2 scoops) and 2 GU gels (25 grams of carb each), I still could not get sugar out of the 90's. This was VERY strange, and was actually more carb intake than I had at the entire 6 hours of the VT race last weekend. We took a good 20 minute break and sure enough it started to come up fast! We continued to ride, but I took an easy pace and by the time we finished my sugar was 150. Secretly, my legs were killing me, still feeling the effects of last weeks race. I did a post ride bolus of 4.5 units (higher than normal because of the food intake) and canceled temp basal for now. Had subway for lunch within an hour and headed home. Set temp basal at approximately 9:45pm for 8 hours.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Heading to Kingdom Trails Tomorrow

Tomorrow a few of the riders from Racer-X are heading up to Kingdom Trails in Burke, VT. From what I have been hearing, this is a MTB mecca for the Northeast! We are headed out early and plan to get a few hours of riding. Hope the legs are feeling good after the 6 hour race last Saturday at the VT30. Full ride report to follow as well as nutrition and glucose log.

Monday, August 23, 2010

VT 30 (6 Hour) MTB Race

I competed in the VT30 6 hour mountain bike race in Pittsfield, VT near Killington Ski area on August 21st. This was going to be the longest race I have ever done as far as hours in the saddle, and was going to be one of my biggest challenges as far as managing my diabetes.

Here were the rules:
1. Finish 3 laps in order to finish (although I don't think they actually gave out any DNF's)
2. Do as many laps in 6 hours as you can
3. Your last lap must start before the 6 hour limit, this means you could go for a final lap if you crossed the line at 5:59:59.

We arrived at camp on Friday afternoon where we were to meet up with Rob & Renee, Dave & Jean, and Jamie all from the Racer-X team. Maggie and I set up camp, started a shish kabob dinner, made a fire, and had a few beers! Life was good!

Blood sugars were doing well also, got a little low while setting up camp so a few Cliff Mini bars did the trick until dinner. Got to bed around 10pm, and most was well overnight, although I needed about 25g of glucose tablets about 1:20am. Woke up around 6am with blood sugar around 160. I did the usual pre-ride breakfast of a slice Arnold Double Protein toast, and a couple Cliff Mini's. Race start was at 9am and my sugar was hovering around 180, which I was happy with. Temp basal was set at 50% 1.5 hours before race time.

The lap was 10 miles long as measured by my wheel magnet. Here is the profile of a lap, basically straight up, then straight down. Each lap consisted of about 1800ft climbing total. Mostly steady switch back climbing, with a couple sections that kick pretty steep! The promoters had an aid station set up at the top with some drinks, food, and fruit. I had to utilize this on every lap to check sugar, reload and refill. Racer-X also had a tent set up at the start/finish line and Maggie was there with filled water bottles, food, and had all my stuff ready when I came around each lap. I also would check sugar here, and after lap 1 it became apparent the the CGM (continuois glucose monitor) was not as accurate as I had hoped. It said I was 143 but when I checked it, I was at 208. This is not terrible, but I like around 150 during rides, especially since my heart rate was going to average in the 160's most of the day. The harder the effort, the faster the blood sugar will drop, even with a temp basal of 50%.

My goals for the day were to finish the race, ride at least 6 hours, and to have successful glucose management. A good result would have been welcome also! I continued to ride each lap stopping at the top and bottom of the climb to check blood sugar, and refuel. I had to lube my chain on lap 3, but there were plenty of tools and such in the Racer-X pit to fix that. I came down after lap 3 unofficially with 1.5 hours left until the 6 hour cutoff. I was putting in elapsed lap times of 1hr 30min, and this included my stops at both the top and bottom of the climb. I left for my forth lap and never stopped at the top! CGM said my sugar was 140 so I kept on going. I was headed for my fastest lap, but more impressive to me was that my lap times were all within 3 minutes of each other.

For some reason I was actually considering going out for a 5th lap if I crossed the start/finish line with under 6:00 on the clock. I descended as fast as I could and came around the start/finish line at 6:03 and some change. I was not aloud to go for a fifth lap by 3 minutes! This would actually be a good thing as my sugar was now at 80 (checked with the meter at finish), and could not have started that climb without getting some carb intake and a short rest. Maybe next year! I figured I could shave at least 10 minutes per lap off my time if I didn't need to stop, but this was not an option for me this year. I was actually planning my strategy for next year while I was still on the course. Next year I will have a some sort of wooden stake set up in a couple places on the coarse with water bottles of Edurox or Heed. I will also have more experience managing my sugar over a long race and maybe won't need to stop for sugar checks. I am also hoping I can use a new insulin pump and CGM that is a little more accurate. If I can accomplish that i think I can turn 1:10-1:15 lap times which should put me in line for 5 laps.

All in all I accomplished all my goals. I rode 4 laps, 40 miles, in 6:03:XX, climbed 8000+/- feet, had good blood sugars (here is my log for the day), and I finished 14th in Sport Men which was way better than I had anticipated! We were all back at camp enjoying a few beers by the camp fire, eating food and sharing stories about our rides..... that's what biking is all about! Can't wait for next year!!