The miracle of marathon training.

The stress fracture in my foot has finally healed so I have commenced my full time training plan for Boston and UTA50.

Changing my schedule from running 2-3 days a week, to now running 6-7 days has been both a shock and blessing for my body.

Albeit only a few weeks in, my cardiovascular fitness has already taken a huge leap forward and my strength and power is improving with every training session.

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The most dramatic change I have noticed is the impact running more has on my blood glucose levels.
Having been off running for 10+ weeks, my insulin requirements increased significantly. At the time I didn’t fully attribute it to the fact I wasn’t running.
I was still training 5-6 days a week – a combination of swimming, cycling, weight training and walking. I thought that would have kept my insulin sensitivity up.

Instead I was blaming hormones, my wayside nutrition (was eating very low calorie) and a few other things which I thought ‘must’ have been the cause of my struggle to keep my usual tight diabetes control.

Not even a few days into my running schedule I was having hypos 3-4 times a day. I was eating more carbs than ever but couldn’t keep up with my body burning through them or storing them as glycogen.

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I took my usual aggressive approach with my management and dramatically dropped my basal rates to start with, followed by adjusting my insulin:carbohydrate ratio for all my meals.

As I was making these changes and eating an abundance of dates and bananas to keep my BGLs in range I reflected on the response my body was having to running again.

I truly didn’t think that one form of exercise could have such a huge impact on my insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels.

I now had a fresh perspective on the benefits of running on my diabetes management. I was grateful for both the opportunity and blessing to be able to get out on my feet on a daily basis.

Now, after 1 month of full training, my basal rate has dropped back to almost the lowest it has ever been at 8 units a day and my insulin:carbohydrate ratios are back in the 20s.

I am comfortable at where things are at with my diabetes control now as I settle back into running. I rarely have a BGL over 10 mmol/L and the lows are becoming less frequent.

Let’s focus on what’s good for our body, mind, soul and our diabetes.

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