For the past couple of months I have been seeing posts on Facebook about Team Novo Nordisk member Sebastien Sasseville running across Canada. I figured that this was the Team Novo Nordisk triathletes running as a team across Canada to raise diabetes awareness. I then started to see more and more articles and in each article the word solo appeared. I would think to myself that running across Canada on your own would be impossible.
That is Sebastien and Team Novo Nordisk though, what we think is impossible they think can be done. Breaking down the run it is 180 marathons in 9 months!!! Yes thats right!!! When I saw that I thought that my goal of doing two marathons in a year was nothing. The run starts on February 2nd and again that is in St. Johns Canada. Not a nice warm country like Australia but Canada, the average high in St. Johns for February is 29 degrees. Personally I know that running in the cold is horrible, it burns your lungs and breathing is a lot tougher.
I love when people with diabetes do the impossible!!! I have no doubt in my mind that Sebastien will complete this amazing run. To get more information on Sebastiens run you can go to Outrun Diabetes. (That page is already my new homepage) I will be following Sebastien on Facebook, Outrun Diabetes and on Twitter to hear how the run is going every day until he finishes. I know that I will have tough training days ahead but by following Sebastiens amazing run I will have no excuses. A five mile run or a 40 mile bike ride is nothing compared to running 7,500km. I wish Sebastien the best of luck and wish that I could sneak off to Canada to join him for a section of his run, I also wish I could be at the finish line when he cro
Last night was an odd night, my blood sugars during the JV game were perfect. I have no problem with that, the weird part was that during the varsity game I started to go higher, eventually have a high of 253. As I saw the numbers rising I gave myself four units over the two hours, I knew that I could have a bowl of cereal after the game and all would be good. I arrived home at 152 and felt great, with 1.3 units of insulin still active I had my cereal and a juice box and called it a night.
While I was sleeping the Dexicom magic show began, the Dexicom was performing great around 2am when it buzzed and told me that I was at 55. I got up, tested and was 48. I would do the famous Noonan low blood sugar pig out, then took two units of insulin, I knew I'd be above 200 in a couple hours, this 2 units would hopefully prevent that. As you see to the left my blood sugar went above 200 quickly but not to much higher. From 4am until 6am my Dexicom did its magic act. I don't know if the Dexicom said this guy is working me to hard and left early or if the Dexicom needed a nap after being up for 72 hours straight.
In all seriousness I don't know why I did not get any blood sugar readings for almost two hours. My only guess could be rubbing against my t-shirt and the mattress, with the CGM site on my left hip sleeping on my left side may cause it lose contact with the receiver. Random very off topic idea, I might name my receiver Ed McCaffery, my favorite wide receiver from the Denver Broncos!!! Back to the main topic, I don't know why I lost contact with the receiver, I will probably try sleeping without a shirt tonight to see if that helps. I don't know if this will help, if anyone has had similar problems I would love to hear of your solutions.
I got lucky this evening when I tested my blood sugar to get a picture for tonights blog, my CGM and the meters I used to test were right around the same number. I have seen a lot of fellow diabetics test on different meters and the numbers have been very different.
This morning I found this article about Blood Glucose Meters in 2014. The article does a great job explaining the FDA standards which I never knew before today. Reading that a blood sugar under 75 needs to be with in 15 points 95 percent of the time scared me. Seeing that I'm 55 but could really be 70 is a little scary, reacting to a blood sugar of 55 is a lot different than reacting to a reading of 70. For a blood sugar of 55 I would grab a juice box and a granola bar and not take insulin, for a blood sugar of 70 I would just grab the juice. I'm very happy that the accuracy percentage has gone up from 95 to 99 percent. The more accurate the readings are the better care we can give.
What I have to remember is that technology is not perfect but the right steps are being taken to eliminate mistakes. Last time I checked I'm very far from perfect, I make mistakes on a daily basis, if I was a meter I feel that my accuracy percentage would be around 85 or 90. As a coach I often make mistakes on calling a defense or how to handle a late game situation. As an athlete I make numerous mistakes, I start to fast, relax to much going down hill and don't stretch as much as I should post run or bike ride. In my profession I make mistakes, I may not give a green enough water or to much water, I will make mistakes with mowers, I will put down chemicals to late. Until I get better as a person I don't think I have the right to complain about my meter, it is not perfect but it is a lot better than the technology we had just ten years ago.
With temperatures dipping close to zero, I figured it was a great time to plan my running and cycling season. What better way to warm up than thinking about running a half marathon or cycling one hundred miles in hot and humid conditions. As more time passes I can feel my legs finally coming back, it has been three months since the marathon and my legs are still a little tired. They are getting stronger and I'm getting stronger as the season approaches. My season will start this Sunday with a 5K, I'm just looking to get my legs back and finish in under twenty-three minutes. Life may make it so I can't compete in all of the events listed but I'm looking forward to doing better than last year.
2/2 The Super 5K in Narragansett
3/9 Ocean's Run Half Marathon
4/6 The Jamestown Bridge 10K
4/13 Clamdigger 5K and 5 Miler
5/4 Cox Providence Rhode Races Half Marathon
6/1 Rhode Island Tour De Cure
6/5 Pequot Time Trial
6/11 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
6/12 Pequot Time Trial
6/18 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
6/19 Pequot Time Trial
6/25 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
6/26 Pequot Time Trial
6/27 Nick Bottone Track Mile
7/2 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
7/3 Pequot Time Trial
7/9 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
7/10 Pequot Time Trial
7/16 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
7/17 Pequot Time Trial
7/23 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
7/25 Blessing of the Fleet
7/30 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
8/6 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
8/7 Pequot Time Trial
8/13 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
8/14 Pequot Time Trial
8/20 Tom McCoy Summer Fun Run
9/12 Charlie Stavros Memorial Run
9/15 Surftown Half Marathon
10/19 The RI Duathlon
In sports tapped out is used when a competitor has had enough, been beat up to much, or can no longer stand up, the referee will hit the mat a few times to end the match, hence, "tap out." For any athlete when someone says you tapped out that is one of the worst comments that can be made.
Yesterday at the gym I tapped out, it was not pretty and I'm still upset about it. I had an appointment at the gym at 11:15, this time was tough because it was just before lunch. Usually around 11:15 my blood sugar is starting to come down a little so my blood sugar is in the 100 range before I eat. Yesterday at 9:30 my blood sugar was at 260, my post breakfast spikes are still around unfortunately. I decided to take two units of insulin to get my blood sugar down, this proved to be a mistake. As I got in the car to drive to the gym my blood sugar was at 210 and dropping, I suspended my pump and grabbed an orange juice and a fiber one bar to give myself a blood sugar boost before working out.
As my workout began I was at 120 but my blood sugar was trending up which I was very happy to see. My workout for the day would be 20 pushups and then 10 kettlebell swings, I would take two off of the pushups and add two swings until I did 20 kettlebell swings and ten pushups. Although my arms felt like rubber I was feeling great, my trainer even yelled at me for smiling while doing the pushups. My trainer would say "I don't know what is wrong with you, who smiles while doing this!!!" In ten minutes everything would change. As I started the next exercise, 20 trx rows and 10 goblet squats, I began to sweat like crazy. My shirt was soaked and I was starting to feel like I was going to puke. I figured it was the food that I ate before working out and did my next set, during that set I started to get dizzy and knew that it was my blood sugar and not the food. I told the trainer I need a break and headed to my little cubby to grab my gatorade and another power bar. With my trainer in a slight panic I headed outside to get some cool air, I was still sweating like crazy. He grabbed my dexcom and told me it read 60, at that point I was coming back to normal and began to apologize.
Ten minutes had passed and my Dexcom read 85, I was very fired up and wanted to continue my workout. My trainer will tell me that I was all done and was not allowed to leave until my Dexcom read 100. As an athlete and a diabetic I felt like a loser, I knew that when I took that two units it could cause a problem, I should have never taken any insulin. I keep telling myself that these things happen but I'm still upset, these things should never happen, I messed up!!! I can't wait to get back to the gym and show everyone, including myself that it was a one time freak thing. My pride is hurt and although I always have a little bit of blood sugar fear while working out I will no longer try have the perfect blood sugar before starting a workout. Starting a workout at 200 is ok, I need to remember that.
It's not what other people think of you, it's what you know about yourself"
A few days ago I received an email from a follower of the website. I love receiving emails and was a little surprised when I read I'am currently writing a dissertation on peoples perceptions on sports people with diabetes, specifically focusing on how other athletes feel towards seeing diabetics injecting."
The truth is that I never really paid attention to what others have thought when I'm getting ready for any competition. I then thought about all of the events that I have done in the past and the flood gates opened. I remember my first real bike race that I competed in, I was getting so many odd looks as I began to stretch and warmup, people obviously saw me checking my blood sugar every thirty minutes and checking my pump every five minutes but no one ever said anything. I remember sitting at the start making sure my basal rate was ok and that my CGM was working properly, I could feel all of the competitors eyes focused on me but again no one said anything. Rather than being in my competitive zone I could have just said I'm a diabetic and seen what happened but I did not. I honestly think that no one would have cared, no one would say I have extra food if you get low. I wouldn't expect anyone to offer me anything even if they did know about my diabetes, I don't race to make friends, I race because I want to win. If I make friends during a race I will give them bits of diabetes info but again I don't expect them to babysit me.
This past year I started to compete in a lot of running races. The races are good size but they are the same local competitors week in and week out. I have made some great friends in the local races and they do care which I like. I like that they will just give me a quick glance and say "you good to go?" I respond with a smile and then say "my blood sugars at (whatever my CGM says) I'm ready to kick ass!!" Truthfully that is all I need, I don't mind that other racers know about my diabetes but I don't want my diabetes to bring me extra attention.
The truth is if someone came up to me before a race and asked nicely what I was doing, I would take the time to explain that I'm a diabetic and that I need to test my blood sugar or take a shot before I race. If someone came up and asked "Are you taking steroids?" I would say "Yup, if I win this race I qualify for the olympics, why wouldn't I shoot up." To me dumb questions get a dumb answer, that probably isn't the best way to handle it but if your inconsiderate I can be so as well. I hope that I never have or never will be that guy at a race starring at someone because they are doing something out of the ordinary. I want to be the guy that asks the right way if they need anything or if I should be on the lookout for anything while they run. To me it is like seeing an older person having trouble carrying groceries, do you just say "They will figure it out" or do you go over and help them. I'm the one that will go and help.
This morning my Facebook page had a couple of interesting links on it. Usually I will pay no attention to diet or food links on Facebook, it is so hard to take them seriously sometimes. This morning the two links that I will share came from people that I trust and I found the articles to be quite accurate.
The first article comes from Motherjones.com, I had not heard of the website either until seeing this article, I don't know if that is good or bad. This article has three amazing graphs that show what the american diet looks like. The article does not have any ground breaking news, in fact it just hammers home the point that americans don't have the healthiest diets. The reason I love the articles so much though is that the picture to the left breaksdown perfectly what we should be eating. I actually read this article on my phone and then went through our house to see where I spent my money. For me I would be low in the following areas, dark green and orange vegetables, they are in the house just not in a large number. I would also be low in both low fat dairy and regular dairy, more on that in the next paragraph. My red meat number would be nonexistent other than a yearly hamburger I do not consume red meat. Five years ago when I got serious about cycling I gave up red meat, that summer I felt great, I then ate a hamburger around Labor day and it did a number on me. Any food that reacts like that after not eating it for three months is a food that I will stay away from.
I put dairy products and red meat in the same category. I have no clue what they put in to cows that we get milk from and I honestly don't want to know. After seeing numerous articles about what they put in milk I gave it up a few years ago. I love almond milk and swear by it, it takes a little while to get use to but it is free of GMOs and for me that is very important. I want my food to be natural I don't want a scientist making my food. What I forgot about was butter!!! I use butter for toast and when I make pasta, I eat a lot of pasta so I use a good amount of butter. This morning I read this article and was very upset with myself that I have been eating crap butter for so long. I actually was using the butter from the worst category!! This week I will be making a trip to the store and buying butter from the organic grass-fed or the best category. This may seem a little dramatic but after my experiences with milk and red meat I try my best to avoid bad foods.
This blog was not meant to scare people and say that all food is bad, that is not the case. By making intelligent food choices we are helping ourselves as diabetics, healthier foods often lead to better blood sugars. I'm human I like fast food here and there but it is important to make sure that fast food is not the main source of our food.
I figured that writing a review of the Dexcom would be useless, it is not like the Dexcom is a new product that I have before anyone else. I received the Dexcom five days ago and was so excited when the Dexcom arrived on my door step, I quickly opened all of the boxes and got ready to use my new Dexcom.
I initially was very nervous about applying the sensor to my body. When I was using the Medtronic CGM applying the sensor was not fun at all. The Medtronic sensor hurt, as I sat with the Dexcom sensor against my midsection I prepared myself for the pain that would follow. As I pushed the plunger down I felt no pain what so ever, this is not to say that I will never feel any pain when I apply the sensor but right now the Dexcom is 100x less painful.
I'm on day five with my first Dexcom and I love that, I would be on my second Medtronic CGM in that same period.
I love that when I put in my blood sugar to the Dexcom the Dexcom quickly corrects itself and displays the blood sugar that I just input. For example this morning my blood sugar was at 182, my Dexcom read 169, I input my blood sugar and a second later my Dexcom read 180. It may not seem big but I love that!!! The Dexcom has not been off by more that 20 when I test my blood sugar, that is great!! Most of the time it is within 10 of my blood sugar.
The Dexcom range is amazing!! I can leave the Dexcom on the bleachers during basketball practice and I'm never out of range!! That is huge, I often have to jump in to drills and to have the Dexcom bouncing around in a pocket wouldn't be good, it could fallout and get steeped on, that'd be bad. I can't wait to have the Dexcom on the bike, I will find a way to attach the Dexcom to the handlebars which will be great!!
The alarms are great. I love that the Dexcom goes off when my blood sugar is going up or down quickly. I think it is me but the alarms don't wake me up on the first alert, low or high it takes me two or three alerts before I'm alert. This has caused a little bit of yelling from Leanne, I don't blame her, the alarm is loud but I'm a sound sleeper even with the Dexcom under my pillow.
I do have two small complaints about the Dexcom, the first being that I have no belt clip or case for it. I know plenty of sites that sell cases but the one that came with the Dexcom is horrible!! I will be looking further in to Dexcom cases and would love to hear what others use. My second complaint is that I can't scroll back to see my blood sugar number. Yes the graph is great but I'm getting old and having to guesstimate what the blood sugar was six hours ago is no fun, I want to see a number.
The Dexcom is great. The Dexcom and I are still getting to know each other but so far so good, I wish I had met the Dexcom sooner. I'm excited to see how the Dexcom handles the roller coaster ride that is summer and how accurate it is while I ride the bike. For anyone that is thinking about the Dexcom I say get it, I believe that it is the best CGM available today!!
Over the weekend I received an email from a good friend that works for Glu. For some people you may think I left the e off of glue, or why I'm talking about a friend of mine that works for Elmer. Glu is an active and diverse type 1 diabetes online community. By using Glu I have met some amazing individuals and have joined one of the best diabetes communities online. Glu is about connecting type 1 diabetics with similar interests, they are also about educating anyone that is affected by diabetes. The best part of Glu is that they have a daily question which I always look forward to. The question is not some cheap trick to make sure you visit the site everyday, the questions are real!! I will often answer them before bed so I can read peoples comments and see what others answered. It is amazing and I encourage everyone to take a look at Glu.
I love that Glu is close to me and that I know a couple of the people that work for Glu. Glu has amazing events that bring the diabetes community together. The Glu kickoff event was one of the best, that night I met so many amazing people that do so much good for diabetes all over the world. A lot of the people that I met that night I will talk to in some form each week, be it email, text or telephone. I love that and I love that Glu brings the community together.
One of the biggest events that I'm looking forward to this year is the Closing the Loop event that Glu is putting on with Medtronic. We all know that the Artificial pancreas pump is right around the corner, this event will give everyone and anyone the chance to hear and see first hand this amazing technology. I believe we all have questions about an artificial pancreas and I know that this event will be able to answer most, if not all the questions I have. I also want to see what is next, as we all know I love technology, being at an event that gives us a glimpse in to the future is my dream. The event keeps getting better, no one has to buy a ticket or know someone that works for Glu. The event is open to anyone and everyone, all that you need to do rsvp mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. I can't wait for the 19th of February and I can't wait to see the amazing Type 1 community that will be in attendance!!!
DISCLAIMER: I don't work for Glu or any diabetes company, each time I write a blog about a product or an event that I will attend I do so because I believe in the event or product.
As another blast of cold air approaches New England, Team Novo Nordisk gets ready to start its 2014 cycling season in the Tour de San Luis in Argentina. Personally I can't wait for the season to begin, I love seeing all of the updates on Facebook. I love seeing riders blood sugars before they head out for one of the stages and it is even more impressive to see what their blood sugar is at after that stage. Most of all I love seeing the team grow as a whole, the long term goal of Team Novo Nordisk is to race in the Tour De France and each year the team works tirelessly to get closer to that ultimate dream. Following this team on every social media outlet that i can I can assure you that the team will be in the Tour de France within the next ten years. They have a goal and the entire team works harder than anyone to reach the ultimate goal.
Personally I get to pretend that I'm a part of Team Novo Nordisk. I will never have the opportunity to be on the team, I'm an average small town rider that enjoys being on the bike. This year will be a little different however, I purchased the Team Novo Nordisk kit a few weeks ago and can't wait to wear it while I ride my bike all over New England. Cyclists are odd people, it is an unwritten rule that you do not wear a teams full kit!! It would be like wearing a full Denver Broncos uniform to play touch football with your friends, no one wants to be riding in a group with the guy in a full kit. Personally I'm going to wear my Team Novo Nordisk kit whenever I can, I will always have the shorts or the jersey on whenever I go for a ride!! I love Team Novo Nordisk but I will wear them to spread diabetes awareness, I want a child with diabetes to be looking out the window of the car and see me riding with the words "Changing Diabetes" on my back. My hope is that when he or she sees me and my jersey that he or she wants to ride their bike. I want him or her to say to their parent "LOOK that guy has diabetes just like me!!" The Team Novo Nordisk kit is not about me trying to be them, it is about CHANGING DIABETES!!!
As I was calibrating my new Dexcom I was browsing Facebook and saw numerous posts about the Google smart contact lenses for diabetes. When I saw the links and read the articles all I could think about was "Once in a Lifetime" by the Talking Heads. "Well how did I get here?!?!?" Here I am calibrating one of the best diabetes products that we have available and I'm reading an article about a contact lens for diabetes, it seriously blew my mind.
I will start with the excitement that I'm feeling towards diabetes technology. I love technology and have even been called a "nerd" from time to time. I have always loved numbers and have always been great with computer technology, I have had some crazy of my own but this contact lens is nothing I could I ever think of. To get technology down to the size of a contact lens is crazy, to have items in the lens that are thinner than a human hair is insane!!! It is hard not to get excited about this technology but like anything I firmly believe that we are ten years from being able to have this product in our hands. I'd love to see the technology available in five years but like anything so many tests and hoops have to be jumped through before an item is available. I love the thought and can't wait until it is available!!
Now on to the part that scares me about this diabetes contact lens. Ever since I was diagnosed with diabetes I was told that I need to have good control or I could lose my eye sight. Now we are presented with an item that uses our eyes to help us avoid such complications, again my mind is blown. I have a fear that if I have this contact lens that I could lose my eye sight if the lens malfunctions, it might be crazy but what if the lens breaks and my tear comes in contact with the chip or whatever is inside the lens. Honestly that is my only worry which I'm happy about, I'm also sure that the scientists at Google will cover every possible situation and the side effects of the lenses will be minimal when they are made available to the public.
I love that I'm alive to see such amazing technology, not just diabetes technology but technology as a whole. I have always said that I wish that I could live in the 40's, to me that is when the world was really changing, with World War II and how the world changed after the war it would be my dream to travel back to this time. Lately I have reconsidered that, I believe that the world today is changing every day, I really believe that people 500 years from now will look back in amazement at what we are doing with technology. Today we look back at the Pyramids and the Great Wall of China and we are amazed at how they built these amazing structures with just man power. In 500 years people will look back and be amazed at what we have accomplished, I love that and can't wait to see what other technological advances are ahead of us.
This afternoon I received a great email from a sales associate at Dexcom!!
Thank you for responding to my email. I will ship you out a blue kit and sensors to your home address. You should receive an email with a tracking number tomorrow. I hope you enjoy your Dexcom and have a great day.
Now the nerves are starting to act up, don't get me wrong I'm so pumped to be getting a dexcom and to have a CGM again but I'm a little nervous. I'm nervous about making the change, I know that the Dexcom is great but I have never used it before and I'm a bit nervous about the setup. I have already downloaded the Dexcom IPhone app and have watched the Dexcom setup Youtube video which is below.
I also know that I have amazing people in the diabetes community that will help me if I have any questions or problems with the Dexcom. I feel like a teenager heading back to school after the summer with the pair of shoes that everyone has, by making the change to Dexcom I feel like I'm part of the in crowd. For the past couple years I have seen so many posts about the Dexcom that I got a bit jealous, I really loved the Medtronic CGM but after seeing and hearing such great things about the Dexcom I had to join the cool kids. I'm can't wait for the Dexcom and always I will be sure to share my thoughts about the Dexcom after a week or two wit
It is crazy how low blood sugars work, sometimes you feel fine and others make you feel like your stumbling around drunk. Yesterdays run and bike ride have kept my blood sugar lower than normal this morning. I can't complain, I love being on the low end but after having numbers that are higher than average this mornings low was an interesting one.
I was never in any danger but the low feeling didn't want to go away and that is one of the worse parts of a low. Just after eleven, I felt dizzy and was surprised to see 54 when I tested, I don't know if seeing that number made my low worse but I felt like I was in the thirties. I quickly grabbed a couple of juice boxes and a fiber one bar, today would have me eating my lunch backwards. I will often eat a backwards lunch if I'm low before lunch. (A backwards lunch is when you eat your dessert first.) I will often do this to fix my low and then take insulin to cover my lunch. Today it was tough to take that two units to cover my lunch, when I tested a half hour later I was at 136 but I still felt like I was in the fifties. These are some of the worse lows because your blood sugar is fine but you still feel low so you are inclined to eat more and have more juice. This will often result in a high blood sugar which leads to anger and taking to much insulin to fix the high.
I took my two units of insulin and enjoyed my lunch, I really wanted to eat more to fix the low feeling but with a basketball game later this afternoon the last thing I wanted was to be on blood sugar roller coaster during a game. This is odd to say but I'm happy to have low blood sugars back, I'm happy that my workout is giving me lows. I love that workout versus diabetes battle, to me that makes my diabetes.
This morning I woke up and was determined to get back to running and riding my bike outside. I have been going to the gym and working out with the team during basketball practice but to be honest I don't feel like I'm in shape. As I ate breakfast I was happy that I was looking for a Youtube video to get me fired up, in the summer I will often watch Lance Armstrong videos to get me pumped to workout. Today I turned to a classic clip from Good Will Hunting (the clip has some swears so please make sure the kids are not around) why this clip? Not sure, but I believe I had that underdog mentality in my head. I looked at myself as Matt Damon, I know I can run or ride a bike but I will never be as good as the people that win races in the area. I have said it before and it is true, I'm a very weird individual.
As I got ready for my run I felt great, my blood sugar was at 130 and my body was feeling strong. I had no route planned I just wanted to go out for a run and enjoy myself. As the run began I felt really good, I decided to turn towards downtown and go on a usual training run that I did in the summer. As I hit the hill part of my run my legs began to feel a bit tired but for the most part I felt great. The best part was that my blood sugar was at 146 when I finished my run. Without a CGM I was very happy that my temp basal was working out so well. I quickly grabbed a quick sip of a Gatroade and a bit of a Power Bar and got ready for a bike ride. Being I on the bike never felt so good, I feel like the bike is my home. I love cruising around Westerly at 16mph and enjoying all of the towns history. My legs felt strong, I would've stayed on the bike all day if I could have, again I hadn't been on the bike so it would only be a short ten mile ride to get my feet wet. As great as the run and ride went I was still worried about my blood sugar, when I saw 97 after my bike ride I couldn't help but smile.
I have missed running outside and being on the bike. I have also missed the lower blood sugars that go with those exercises. My blood sugar has not gone above 190 today and that is because of working out outside. The gym is good but nothing like working out outside, I know that colder temperatures will come but I would really like to continue working out outside, it is crazy to think but the spring is right around the corner. I want to take the next step as a runner and a cyclist and to do that I need to suck it up and be outside doing my workouts.
Last night brought another intense night of high school basketball and with it usually comes high blood sugars. The keyword in that sentence is usually. As the bus was approaching the school we played at I quickly took out my meter and tested my blood sugar and had a blood sugar of 226. After saying damn I decided to give myself three units of insulin, with the adrenaline of the junior varsity game comes high blood sugars, I was hoping the three units would cover the usual mid game spike.
After being down by as many as 20 in the first half my team fought back and pulled off another tough win, I now have a lot more gray hairs. As we headed down to the locker room the scoreboard said that we had twenty-four minutes before the varsity game began. I was happy to see so much time, I could give my post game talk to the team, get the stat sheets ready for the varsity game, test my blood sugar and grab a bite to eat if I was low. As I was finishing up my talk one of the assistants came in and said that we had only seven minutes before the varsity game began. That changed things real quick, I was going off of how I felt and gave myself two units based on past games this season. As the varsity game went on I felt great, I had a bag of skittles to eat throughout the entire game when I felt low, which for some reason seemed to be happening a lot.
As we got back on the bus to head home I tested and was shocked to see that I was at 56. I quickly downed the Gatorade I had with me and started to think about how I would cover my grinder from subway which would be my late dinner. I settled on 3.1 units and enjoyed my dinner. Halfway home I felt low again, this time I would ask the kids if they had any candy. That is one benefit of being a diabetic high school coach, the kids always have some kind of candy that will fix a low. As I asked my team one of the kids offered some Fritos, I almost dropped when one of the kids said "if Noonan is asking for food he needs sugar not chips, here coach have a couple air heads" With my low good mood I hugged the kid and said "thanks, I don't care what so and so says about you, you're a good kid" (I have learned that you can't complement high school boys, you need that little joke to make what ever complement you gave acceptable.) When I finally arrived home I was at 141 and felt great, once again my team continues to surprise me, so does my blood sugar during and after basketball games. My new CGM can't come soon enough!!!
I feel that this blog is like an update on the television show Unsolved Mysteries. You know the information has to be good if I'm starting with a 90s television show reference. So far everything is going very well but it is a lot of hurry up and wait, something that I'm not very good at doing. I have been talking with great people at Dexcom and Tandem, they have taken all of my information and I have had to answer numerous questions about why I'm looking to change pump and CGM providers. I don't mind answering so many questions but after the phone calls I get to thinking if the switch is really necessary.
After one of phone calls I headed in to our bathroom and got out a new CGM site from my diabetes drawer and gave Medtronic one more chance. As always the Medtronic site had no problem being setup, but when it came to calibrating that is when the fun started. Just before calibration my pump began to buzz and I saw the familiar "Sensor Error" I laughed and cleared the screen, I then calibrated the CGM and had no problems for an hour. As began to feel a little low I looked and saw that my blood sugar was at 260 according to the CGM, I decided to test just to be safe and when I did my blood sugar was at 88. I laughed and tried to recalibrate, this sent the pump in to a frenzy, it kept beeping for ten minutes telling me to retest, finally it just said sensor lost and that was that. I ripped the CGM site out and was glad that I had talked to Tandem and Dexcom and told them to move forward with getting me switched over.
Laying in bed at night my brain again begins to question the change. I will then sit in bed for a half hour or so reading other blogs and what they think about the T:Slim insulin pump. I have read some good posts and have read some bad, but each negative point about the T:Slim is one that they can overlook and not a huge problem. I still feel confident in my decison to make a change and I can't wait to make the switch. Here are a few of the blogs and articles that I have found in my nightly T:Slim google search.
DLife T:Slim Review
Six Until Me: Guest Post: Reviewing the tSlim.
Sweetly Voiced T:Slim Review (I use humalog and have yet to read any reviews that state humalog reacts the same way Apidra) Sweetly Voiced Apidra and the T:Slim
I will start with the good news, my A1C was at 6.9 this morning. I'm very happy to be under 7 but I will call it an ugly victory. After a tough couple of months with way to many readings over 250, I'm shocked to be under 7, I don't know how I pulled off my A1C but I'm not proud of my latest result.
As my nurse practitioner walked in she was stone faced and put down a paper that had all of my readings for the past three months on it, she then asked "what is this?" I laughed and said this is why I came back to you. She said "this can't be real, for years you didn't go over 350 and this has 4 readings above 350, yet your A1C is under 7, we have a lot of work to do." With that said we got to work on changing my basal rates and making sure that I got my dexcom sooner rather than later. The high readings are due mainly to the fact that I haven't had a consistent CGM for the past two months. I'm not going to use that as an excuse, cgm or not I should never be above 300!! That may be asking a lot but when it comes to my health and my diabetes I like to set the bar very high.
I believe that the worst is behind me, I want an A1C under 6.5 when I go back to the doctor in late April. I'm excited to have a challenge and I'm excited to get back to normal when it comes to my diabetes.
This morning I called my endocrinologist office to see if I could setup an appointment and officially change back to my old endocrinologist. Making the endocrinologist change was no problem at all, I just had to provide insurance information and that was it. I was expecting to setup an appointment with my nurse practitioner Angela Younger, I expected to have the appointment in March or even later. When I was asked if I could make it to a 9am appointment tomorrow I almost jumped for joy, I took the appointment and have been smiling ever since.
Almost six years ago I had my first appointment with Angela, I remember the appointment like it was yesterday. I was very hesitant to go to the doctor, I thought I would be seeing this older nurse that would talk to me like I was a kid and tell me how important it is to test my blood sugar and take care of myself. As Angela and I began to talk I quickly found out that Angela was not your normal nurse, after looking at my numbers she laughed and said we have a lot of work to do. She didn't try explaining everything to me, she knew that I knew what it would take to get my health back. What she did do was challenge me, she told me about her diabetes past and that she may be a nurse but she isn't perfect and doesn't expect me to be perfect. She told me how she has had her own diabetes problems and how she gets mad and doesn't want to test, hearing that made me feel like I could tell her anything. For five years I would make it a point to make sure that I was the last appointment Angela had that day, I did this so we could talk diabetes first but then just talk like friends about our diabetes and what we like or dislike about it.
I saw Angela at the TCOYD event in Worcester, Leanne and I were just finishing up our lunch and Angela ran up behind me and gave me a huge hug, she then hugged Leanne and asked how everything was. She cared about us as people, I don't think we talked about diabetes at all that day and I love that. Angela knows me better than any doctor or nurse that I will ever meet, I can't wait for tomorrow. I can't wait to sit down and talk diabetes with her, I need her advice. I need her honesty and I need my diabetes family back. I'm just so happy to see everyone at Joslin tomorrow morning, I made one of the biggest diabetes mistakes by leaving Joslin for what I thought was better care. Maybe I needed other doctors and nurses to see how great Joslin is, I'm just happy to be back with my doctor and nurse family!!!
With a great diabetes attitude I was looking forward to an evening of coaching basketball. Before the games began my blood sugar was at a very respectable 163, knowing that my adrenaline would be pumping during the game I took two units of insulin just before the tip. Basketball plays are all about timing, taking insulin before a game is same, if I take the insulin to early I will be low at the start, take the insulin to late and I will be high during the game.
After a very close game I had ten minutes to test my blood sugar and have a small snack before the varsity game began. After a post game speech I headed over to my bag of diabetes goodies and tested my blood sugar, my machine flashes a screen once the blood is applied, at this screen I can set when I'm taking the blood sugar, either pre meal, post meal or none. The best part is if I don't choose an option that screen will stay up unless my blood sugar is above 200 or below 70. I often sit and wait the five seconds, if a number doesn't pop that means my blood sugar is in range. Sitting on the bench I played the waiting game but unfortunately the number appeared and it was at 240. I stomped my foot and took three units of insulin to cover my snack, the best part of my tirade was that one of my athletes asked what was wrong, he got a quick five minute diabetes lesson, these lessons always make my night. it is great when an athlete shows a real interest in my diabetes.
After the varsity game I played the blood sugar game on the bus. Sitting in the dark I sat nervously hoping that I didn't see a number after five seconds. After talking to the coaches for five minutes I realized that I never heard my machine beep, I was all giddy as I started my machine up to see what my blood sugar was, when I saw the number 85 I did a Tiger fist pump and felt good. Tonight was not perfect but I have a much better feel for my diabetes this year than I eve had as a coach. I still have some work to do but will sleep well knowing that I'm improving.
For the past three days I have gotten back to being my old self. Some minor tweaks to my basal rates just before the new year have worked wonders. My blood sugars have been back to the 100 to 140 range a big difference from the 150 to 200 range that I was experiencing for most of December. The lower blood sugars also brought out the old me, the one that is always smiling and having fun. You can tell that I was unhappy because my team has been asking me why I have been in such a great mood the past few days.
After almost a foot of snow last night today would bring with it an epic battle between shoveling and blood sugars. With a new found confidence I headed out just after 7 this morning to help shovel out my parents. I was confident and nervous, I had my normal breakfast but only took two units of insulin, I was worried that I didn't take enough insulin and that I may be high after shoveling. With a burst of energy I shoveled out my parents and returned home to shovel the walkways at our house before the plow came to do the driveway. After doing all of this my blood sugar was at 93, with a big smile I could enjoy my mid morning snack. After lunch I would cleanup our drive way and shovel what the plow could not get, I turned in to a little kid while doing so. Ever since I was a kid I wanted to bury the mailbox with the snow from the driveway, this afternoon I did my best to achieve this. I even rolled around in the front yard with our dog, it is crazy how small changes in my blood sugar can make a big difference in my personality.
The only negative from today was heading to the gym after shoveling, I knew what I would be able to do but steered away from it to take a spin class. Almost thirty minutes in to an hour class I could feel that I was low. I got off the bike and went to the car to grab a juice box to fix the low and call it a day at the gym. Twenty minutes later I returned home and had a blood sugar of 85, again I caused the low by trying to do to much. I'm just happy that my numbers have been lower and that I feel so great.
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