Diabetes … and more

When doctors go to school, do they learn another language, a language only they are privy too? Because seriously, after spending a weekend reading through a doc’s manual my head is spinning with incomprehensible doctor talk!

On Friday I had an appointment with the dietitian and nurse at the VGH Diabetes Clinic. When I started making these appointments, I was hoping to get a fresh perspective on my disease and some insider knowledge on how to better manage it. But after that first visit in January, despite walking away happy with what I gleaned from the dietitian, I was so unimpressed with the pump nurse who basically told me she had no idea why I was there given how good a diabetic I am. Yes I’m a good diabetic, but I want to be a perfect diabetic. Is that really so much to ask for?

Apparently it is. For this appointment, my file was given to a regular nurse, as the pump nurse was on holidays. The first words this nurse said to me were, “I don’t know anything about the insulin pump … any questions?” Awesome.

Thankfully my dietitian once again proved useful. I told her about my struggles with finding a good nutrition source for my long distance runs that won’t send my belly into a raging war. I told her how I thought some fruits, like pineapple, would be good, but how I was worried that it would skyrocket my blood sugars. She, however, didn’t seem concerned with the sugar counts at all. (Unfortunately I can’t read my notes from that portion of the meeting, so I’m going from memory here…) She said that fruit and GU gels were comparable in carb ratios, and that fruit would actually have a slower release glucose because of its fibre content. She also suggested I dilute juice or sports drinks – with sugar! – in with my water bottles, which would be a lot easier to digest than straight up gels and food. My only fear with that is the hunger factor.

Before leaving the appointment, she gave me a stack of papers, like practically the size of an Oxford Dictionary, centralized on endurance training for type 1 diabetics. She warned me that some sections might be confusing as it was taken from a doctor’s tool book, but she thought it might come in handy. Wow! I have seriously been looking for a resource like this practically since I started running … I just wish it was in a language I could actually understand!


  • 11 a.m. BG before: 12.8
  • Temp. basal: -30% (1 hour)
  • Distance: 11 km (lsd)
  • Average pace: 6:20 min/km
  • Time: 1:09:41
  • 12:30 p.m. BG after: 8.1
  • Temp. basal: +50% (1 hour)

After last week’s stroll through Steveston, I decided to make the village my running destination this week. Aside from the wharf, and the market, I’m really not that familiar with the area. But thanks to mapmyride.com, Mario was able to map me out a fairly straight forward route. Unfortunately, however, I discovered that Steveston really is just the waterfront and fishing village. Once you stray from those areas, which are so super beautiful, it’s just loud, busy roads 🙁

I liked this sign

Despite the heavily congested roads, it was a good run. I felt great, something I wasn’t feeling on my previous two runs. And the ending, well, you can’t really go wrong with old-fashioned ice cream on the waterfront now can you!

Maple walnut ice cream, it’s practically chocolate milk 😀

Where is your favourite place to run?

5 thoughts on “Diabetes … and more”

  1. Robert Freeman

    My favorite place to run is to the refrigerator during commercial breaks.
    I figure that, secretly, this is the only reason the CRTC allows SO MANY commercial breaks during any given half hour of broadcast time, otherwise it would be detrimental to the health of Canadians, young and old.
    The key, of course, is that the energy expended from leaping off the couch and beating a path to the refrigerator before the resumption of regular programming should exceed the caloric intake. Great dollops of maple walnut ice cream, therefore, are to be avoided. Grab a handful of grapes instead. One of my favourites is a glass of Crystal Light, made with ice cold water, which doesn’t lose its fizz like other soda pop beverages before the next commercial break.
    This all makes me wonder about how much public interest is really behind PBS, which has no commercial breaks at all!!
    Just saying … 🙂

  2. Hey Katie I might be able to decipher some of the dr manual for you, it may even help me study for my mcat :). Dinner sometime this week? I will most likely be out your way!! Lemme know!

  3. That’s interesting. Everyone is different but at least for me I found gels and water to be the only thing I could digest. Anything with fiber would abruptly end my run. Main reason i take gels every 40 min or so is to keep my BG up. I take Lantus so I have no way of adjusting my basal. Gels keep glucose somewhat even. I never had problem of going high on a long run. When I race….it’s totally opposite. Adrenaline kicks in and releases so much glucose that I can ran a marathon without supplementing with carbs and finish in 200-300’s (11-17) range…I look at it as an advantage 😉 As for long run hunger, I break my long run into shorter runs with purpose. Every mile has a certain pace goal. sometimes I do hill repeats or intervals in the middle of the run or try to hit a certain pace for certain portions of the run…this keeps things interesting so I don’t really think about hunger and time goes very fast. Please share what you learn from your “stack of paper”…good luck

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