Monday, December 5, 2011

Advocate. What is it?

Update. Well, I am lacking in the blog post/advocate area.

Life has been stressful.... Work, money, health, family, work. I want to say lately, or in the last couple months, but that would be lying. Ups and downs are all a part of life, deal with it right? This is not a bitch blog where I always complain about life, or diabetes, or poor me. I don't want to start doing that here today either. So I'll explain it another way.

Outlets. We all need one. Or two. Writing blogs and advocating Diabetes is something I want to make more of a priority. Advocating Diabetes is a cause that I believe in, and a cause that I believe in educating others on. Even though I am diabetic, and it is a priority, it is still hard to find the time. I am not one to post just because I feel like I have to, and as a consequence, I am not getting as many reads or page views as I would like. So here is a different take on advocating. The definition of advocating is variable in my opinion, and it is not constrained to social media or any other means, but rather about making a small connection. Even if it is one, two, or three at a time.

(BRC Shedd Park CX Race. Lowell, MA)
My outlet lately has been racing my Cyclocross bike on the weekends when possible. I have done 10 races this season so far. I always have the best intentions of writing after a weekend of racing. I want to write and inform people about my blood glucose levels (BG's), nutrition, on the bike basal rates and all of that. I'm not always proud of my race, my BG's, my diet, or my attitude. The race I did on Sunday I was proud of, but not because of the results. The fact is I got my ass handed to me. But, the best advocation I have done all year happened unexpectedly at the start line Sunday when I made a small connection.

Usually near the start of a race I will check BG's and intake carbs as necessary. We were all lined up and waiting for the whistle, and nervously I was checking the front of my MiniMed pump which I always wear on my upper left arm, and it displays the results of my CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor, it displays an approximation of my BG). It read 82. I was a bit worried (82 is a tad low for a Type 1 race start) even though I consumed a Hammer Gel a few minutes prior. I also knew that my liver would spit out some carbs and bring my BG up after some anaerobic throttling of my cardiovascular system. Not knowing the guy next to me was watching, he said "is that an iPod?" I told him I was type 1 and it was an insulin pump. When I looked up there were about 5 guys and some spectators watching me.

I don't know what any of those people were thinking, but at that point I was advocating Diabetes more than any blog, tweet, or status update I ever wrote could. At the end of the race, still breathing hard and sweating, I was checking my CGM again for my approximate BG. Another racer came up alongside me and said "Great job! My girlfriend is Type 1 and races in the Cat 3 Women's race".

I hope she checked her BG or CGM at the starting line of her race and had the same connection on 5 additional people. It was a great result.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

CX Racing tomorrow!

It's been a while since I have posted, no excuses, but I will start writing more frequently now that Fall is upon us... As well as cyclocross season!

I'm at my lightest wieght in 5 years and ready to ride Suckerbrooke Cross tomorrow am... Then off to church.

My Sunday steed:

Monday, July 18, 2011


(8 days post crash)
It has been 8 days since my crash at FOMBA. My leg is still very sore to the touch, but I managed to ride today for the first time since. Although it is sore, I feel like the muscle is mostly healed and the swelling is 90% gone. The worst part is when I hit a bump (the pot holes here are EPIC, as are the drivers) my leg jiggles a we bit... that seems to bother a 14 inch bruise quite a bit. Maybe not too healthy to ride yet, but I really needed to be on my bike.

I got chased down by a messenger while into a head wind, but he never passed me. He stayed a couple car lengths behind and when he turned at the rotary I saw he had at least a 47x16 gear. I ride a 42x17 and probably need to bump that up al la James White style, but he didn't try to pass all the way from Boston (TD Garden) to the Route (pronounced root) 16/99 rotary in Everett. I should bump that gear up, but right now there is only 1 bike I am worried about.

I sent my Yeti back on Wednesday and they received it on Thursday. I have not heard back yet about the state of the warranty decision. I hope that I can get my bike back soon as there are some major events planned for kids with Diabetes and MTB'ing that I need my bike for. There is also talk of a 24 hour ride at Great Glen in New Hampshire, 2 person Type 1 team.

Diet and Diabetes update: So I learned something form a person who has only had diabetes for about 6 weeks, and I decided to keep an open mind and give it a shot. My newly acquired, newly diagnosed T1 friend Cody from Colorado started the Paleo Diet and has since not needed to take insulin. I do not expect these results with this diet and it is not my goal, but great for him! I need to drop some weight that was acquired from bad eating habits and 18 hours work days, and if my D #'s get better doings so, I'll give it a shot.

I have been on the diet for 2 weeks and 1 day. I have lost 14 pounds, all while eating Veggies, fruit, meats, and a few other things that were available to early humans. All that weight loss is great, and I am eating plenty of healthy foods doing it. I feel great, I'm not hungry, and I have plenty of energy. But the best part is my D #'s. Take a look...

(The only real questionable area is at noon. Basal change will fix that)
The green area is a good blood glucose range for me. It is 70 at the bottom, and 140 at the top. The black dotted line is my 7 day average. The dotted line for me has never been in the green 100% of a 7 day period in my life, and I consider myself to be a responsible diabetic. I have had a few issues with high BG's, and I am learning about how and when my liver emits glucose during hard exercise. 

This is a learning process and I have had to cheat a couple times when I have had low BG's and eat glucose tablets (no processed food allowed on the Paleo Diet), but I am not willing to compromise my life to stay 100% to the diet. For now I cant argue with the numbers or the way I feel so I am going to stick with it! I'll report again with more data...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Crashed the Yeti at FOMBA

So life has been pretty busy as of late. I have been riding a fair amount since the Bruin's won the Stanley Cup and my work schedule has lightened up. I have started a new diet that I will get more in depth in after a little more time goes but, but so far am impressed. It's not really so much of a diet as it a 'Hey You, eat healthy'! More to come....

I was riding at one of my favorite New England trail areas, FOMBA (Lake Massabesic) this past weekend. I was to ride all the trails finishing with Fireline, and then turn around and do Fireline again backwards. I was about 1/4 of the way through Long Trail and I heard a loud bang, it was kind of like the same sound as when you are cruising down a rocky trail and a BFR hits your rim/crank/downtube. But it wasn't any of those! By tire immediately locked up and I began skidding out of control. I went over the bars and landed side thigh first on another BFR, and my bike went ass over tea kettle hitting yet another BFR right on the seat stay/drop out junction. The stays are made of carbon fiber and the crash resulted in a bulged and splintered carbon seat stay. The loud bang I heard was the drop out cracking.

I talked to my dealer back in Colorado and got an RA # from Yeti. I FedEx overnighted (is that a word?) it today and hope to hear good news soon. I am very hopeful that Yeti will replace the frame as I have many events coming up including a MTB skills camp for type 1 diabetic kids in the Boston area. This will be difficult without my bike. Yeti has a great reputation and I have nothing bad to say about the bike itself, I just cant afford to be without a bike right now.... will keep you posted!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Type1Rider Trailer

Tony Cervati has Type 1 Diabetes and is racing his bike in the Tour Divide to show everyone that people with diabetes have no limitations. Tour Divide is a 2,845 mile mountain bike race from Banff, Canada to Antelope Wells, NM (Mexico/US border) along the great divide. This race climbs a total of over 200,000 ft from start to finish, and takes an average of 3-4 weeks. The race must be done unsupported. All racers must utilize the same facilities that are available to everyone on the route, and no racers can pre-arrange any sort of stop for anything, including supplies. This will be an epic feat for him and for diabetes.

Please help Tony and TapRoot Films create the film. Go to the Kick Starter page below and show your support. Please share this information in all your social media outlets, blogs, email and websites so that this film can happen. I know every single person who reads this is in someway affected by diabetes

Tony: @type1rider on Twitter
TapRootFilms: @taprootfilms on Twitter
Kick Starter site:

Please check out the trailer for the film that will help Tony help all of those who are affected with diabetes.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Quick ride post

Rode Willowdale again today..... in the pouring rain. But I had a great ride and even met up with Dave and Jean from the team, and rode with them for a while. I had a tough time with BG's today and was chasing low's all day. I think it has to do with yesterdays lingering effects of working until almost 2am and then motivating for a ride when my body just didn't want to. I never got below 90mg/dl on my ride, but was constantly eating. Life in the D! Had fun, got muddy, a little over 10 miles single-track, and stayed upright! Good Day!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

First dry Willowdale Ride!

Yeti Big Top 29er + Singletrack = :-)
Got out for a quick lap at Willowdale State Forrest. A little drizzle in the air, but I'll call it dry as my last ride out there was pouring and 40°F. Trails were in very good shape this time around, and the ride was great.

I started the day with a couple pieces of Double Protein toast with strawberry jelly. I added my 40g carbs and  BG of 98 into the Bolus Wizard of my MiniMed pump and it delivered a bolus of 4.9U. I went for an easy 1hr hike with dogs, and when I returned home to get ready for my ride I was low at 65. My CGM warned me of the approaching low, but I was out of glucose tablets in the car. You may think this is deplorable, but it happens, and I fixed the issue the same day and replenished. Set a temp basal of 55% a little after 2pm for a 3:30pm start time.

The start of the ride was chilly but I warmed up pretty quickly. I am convinced that the cold weather has an impact on insulin sensitivity. I can't back it with any medical resource at this time, but I feel like low BG's are more apt to happen in colder weather. I digress. My only complaint on my ride was a little lower back pain. I'm not sure if I am getting used to wearing a hydration pack or if riding a single-speed could be the culprit, but those are the only things that have changed recently.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Help from the DOC!

I wanted to write a blog post asking for everyone to help out a member of the DOC (diabetes online community). Tony Cervati is a Type 1 diabetic who is riding the Tour Divide mountain bike race. This race starts in Banff, Canada and goes to Mexico along the Great Divide. That's right over 2,800 miles and it is mostly off road on trails in the wilderness. Oh yeah, and it is self supported! That means there is no team car or help along the way. In comparison the Tour de France is about 2200 miles and is all on roads. This will be an epic challenge!

Taprootfilms is trying to capture the race and create a film about Tony's experience. I think this film will be a great way for other diabetics to see how diabetes does not have to be a limiting factor in our lives, and that we can attempt anything.

Please read through the links I have oprovided, and go to and learn about Tony's story and why this film is important. If anything, please link to these sites/stories in your own blog posts, Facebook, and Twitter so that others can be exposed to the great things these people are trying to do.

Good luck Tony and Taprootfilms, we will be following you the best we can during your race!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I don't care....

(To be clear, Diabetes is not reversible. At all. Ever.)
This upcoming article in 'Readers Digest' has come up this week in some diabetes blogs that I read. It states that you can reverse diabetes, which is a false statement. A lot of people are very frustrated and feel that this is somewhat of an outrage. I can't disagree with how they feel. My words would be that this is irresponsible of 'Readers Digest', and I think it would behoove them to title it 'Reverse Complications of Diabetes' or something similar.

People misunderstand diabetes and how it is brought about, and articles like this are trying to be helpful. I would encourage 'Readers Digest' to spend a little more money on their editors to prevent potential dis-information, especially on titles of articles and publications. I am betting that this article has some suggestions along the lines of healthy eating, exercise and some general tips on healthy living the would definitely not hurt a person with diabetes.

25.8 million people in the U.S. have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, unless you are one of them or you are a heath care professional working around diabetes, you probably don't take the time to know the disease like those of us who have it. In fact there are many people with diabetes that don't know, or care to know the intricacies of the disease. It is claimed that 7 million people out of the 25.8 million don't even know they have the disease. Those people are probably not the most informed or educated either. 'Readers Digest' may be failing at informing people about our disease, at least in the title of this publication.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

This weeks riding....

I think I have turned the motivational corner, and have started getting into more of a regular exercise schedule. The weather has NOT cooperated. It has been raining, cold and windy. My job does not allow any sort of normal schedule for eating, sleeping or exercise so I just have to suck it up and get it done. Some days (rarely) I will work 8am-5pm, some game days I might do a 11am-11pm, and weekends may be a double header. It has yet to fail that my day off is gloomy, windy, snowy, cold and rainy. Even though all this can, and will, deteriorate motivation to get out and exercise I have to suck it up and get out.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Diabetic Safety

***This post is important to everyone, but especially people with Diabetes***

Get an identification accessory. My wife would be so proud that I used the term accessory with out her encouragement! Back in the day people had no choice but to wear those big clunky medical ID bracelets or necklaces. Today there are many choices. I am in no way affiliated with this company but will give them a plug anyway. I use a Road ID Elite. You can have it say whatever you want, and they have many colors, styles and other products besides bracelets.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

First MTB ride of the year

My new Rig - Yeti Big Top 29er
I can't believe how fast the snow melted. At one point this winter, and I am not joking, you could not see a UPS truck drive down the street the snow banks were so high. Stop sings were covered. But I managed to find dry trails last weekend and got out for a 1.5 hour ride.

There was a very Fall like feel outside with temps in the mid 40's, lots of dry leaves on the trails, and a few wet spots to avoid. I even saw some deer crossing the trail in front of me at one point, which is an unexpected bonus considering where I was riding.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Can I have 2 Pump/CGM's?

I was on a Minimed pump/CGM system for the past 7 years. Most recently the Real Time Revel system. I stopped using Minimed because of a customer service issue that I thought was unacceptable.

I have been doing a little research trying to figure out when OmniPod and Dexcom are going to integrate. Basically this integration would mean that the CGM data would be available on the Omnipod PDM and I would only need to carry 1 device. I am also trying to decide if I want to switch back to my Minimed Real Time Revel pump/cgm. I came upon this article (2nd entry) in my research and it sounds like there is going to be a long delay in getting the integrations done.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

No hitter?

Depends when I start counting, but I got a no hitter going.....
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Friday, January 28, 2011

It's in!

Got a new project in the mail today... Thank you Totally Wired Cyclery! Will post pictures when I'm done building it. Too bad there is about a 3 foot snow pack right now :-(
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Strippers in my phone!?!

I have a HTC Droid Incredible phone. I got it in August and have not had a single problem with it, until Tuesday night. I was about to brush my teeth when it beeped, so I pushed the button to light up the screen and saw the 'Your Battery is dead, shutting down phone' message. I set it down and began to brush em'.. I never leave the watter running, but this day I did, and when I turned to say something to my wife I bumped it into the sink! I scrambled to get the phone dried off and battery out, all while my wife in the other room is wondering why I was cussing right after I said her name.

I got the phone dried off, it really didn't even get wet, and powered up the next day. The software was running funky so I did a factory reset after backing up contacts and such. After I re imported my contacts I decided to go through and clean them up, you know how sometimes you out a random number in your phone, but you really don't need it long term... So I'm going through and I get to 'Daisy' and its not ringing a bell. It's a local number. Thinking nothing I hit Delete. I move on and get to Mercedes, again a local number, and I have NO CLUE who she is! Now I start to wonder what would happen if my wife had seen my phone... I deleted the entry, and moved on. Patiently going through the rest I come to Pebbles! OK, WTF is going on! Local number again.... and I finally realize what is going on and nearly choked as I laughed uncontrollably.... at work!

I take my dogs hiking most days at an area that has lots of trails and a designated 'Dog Park' area for them to socialize. Occasionally I come across a sign for a missing dog, or an owner who is looking for their dog, and I put their phone number in my phone with the dogs name. These 3 entries were all missing dogs from earlier in the summer! I am not sure why my mind went with strippers/call girls on the sight of these entries, but we got a pretty good laugh out of it!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Pretty good day!

A little high after lunch, but so far so good!
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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Snowstorm = No biking

Too much snow in the latest storm to be out on the bike so I have teaken the dogs hiking the last couple days. We had fresh tracks at the park today on most of the trails. A pretty good New England 'Bluebird' day!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Back in the saddle again

It's time to shed these pounds after a couple months of hibernating. I have been hiking on most days off, but nothing I would consider training. I have done a little training for Oktoberfest, but that's another post for another day! This weeks is full of work. Games are scheduled every night for the TD Garden including a double header for Saturday. The good thing about working game days is that I typically don't have to be in until about 1pm and this will allow for some am exercise. Factor in 2 dogs and my options are limited! Factor in 24 degrees.... and I wish I could take my dogs to the beautiful gym inside my apartment complex and put them on the tread mill!

This week I am trying to get out everyday and include the dogs in MY training instead of making my exercise be hiking... again. So I piled the dogs and my Cyclocross bike in the car and headed to the Fells, with a lot of layers! I figured I had time for about an hour ride and that would suffice both the dogs and I. There are quite a bit of dirt roads at the Fells and the water department keeps them clear. There are a few hills I could work out on and make an OK work-out of it. When we got out there most of the roads were packed in and frozen foot traffic, so pretty bumpy!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

I'm still here..... barely!

So after a long 5 weeks with no posting I figured it was about 4 weeks past due! I have failed at blogging......

Within a day of my last post I was running a temperature anywhere from 97-101, had most of the minor flu-like symptoms, and felt terrible! Like most people with diabetes, the common cold makes managing my diabetes very difficult. My basal rates can get thrown out the window. My insulin to carb ratio's can get flushed, and my insulin correction sensitivities need Midol!

After a few days of high temps and nausea it migrated into the a head cold that would not budge. For about 4 weeks I have been a mucus coughing/spitting machine, feeling less than stellar. I missed all 5 remaining cyclocross races (although 3 would have been missed due to work schedule changes anyway). So the only exercise I have gotten has come from hikes with the dogs since the Shedd Park race. This has been somewhat self inflicted with the Holidays and all.