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  1. #1
    Back in the Saddle Again
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    New question here. Dealing with the dreaded bonk when Diabetic and commuting.

    Being type 2 diabetic for many years I had gotten my dietary needs down with my then lifestyle and activity levels.

    Then I started riding bike and shortly after, commuting.

    Last week I had two cases of the bonk in as many days both on the evening commute. On the second day I had my tester on hand and when I tested before leaving I was at 124. Two miles later, with a head wind I felt the effects and stopped, checking my gl levels. It was a 44. I loaded up on a large malt shake, having forgot the glucose tabs I bought that morning at work. Waited a bit, and tested again. I was at 94 and I hit the road at a steady but relaxed pace. 8 miles later I got home and retested, 97. I burned through the shake to get home.

    I equated that with having close to bare pantry, so meals were lucky to clear 2K daily but it was an eye opener.

    So now I have to sit down and revamp my eating habits around my evening commute and also work it with a not real strict paleo diet.

    For those of you dealing with type 1 or two diabetes or those who deal with diet issues and commuting, I would really like to hear from you and how you avoid the dreaded bonk.

  2. #2
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    I am not diabetic so I'm not sure how much help I can offer, but I wanted to share that my father in law is and he wears what works out to a live monitor wirelessly feeding to a readout device that looks kind of like a pager, which alerts him (beep + vibrate) if his sugar goes too high or low. I'm imagining that + glucose tabs for when it alerts?

  3. #3
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    If you don't get any good answers here, (which I hope you do, but it is a limited population), I would suggest checking the xc forum where people are in training, and also the rider down forum. Googling MTBR + diabetes might get better results than the site search - or you may just find people raising money for diabetes!

    I worked with this guy Iditarod Musher Bruce Linton No Limits Sled Dog Kennel when he lived in VT, he is type 1, but a successful triathlete and Iditarod musher who also does a bunch of outreach/inspirational stuff with the diabetes community, so don't hesitate to drop him an email. Barb from VT sent you.

    Glad you were able to find that milkshake. You don't want low blood sugar in traffic, that's for sure.

  4. #4
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    Take a look at The Diabetic Athlete's Handbook. My wife has type 1, and we both read sections of it to get some better handle on how to approach more complex scenarios regarding exercise.

    Also, if you have a good friend or partner you often exercise with, get them up to speed, and teach them how to watch for signs that you are going low or high. Sometimes my wife doesn't notice she is going low, especially in the cold, until she is well below ideal range. however, it is something I may pick up on because she is moving a bit slower, mood changed, etc.

    Carry your monitor, and test before and during exercise. It is worthwhile to have a few times where you test regularly during your exercise, even if your blood sugar is doing fine. It gives you an idea of what your blood sugar is doing (ie does it constantly drop, or does it hold steady, then suddenly plummet).

    One last thought (I know, this is getting long). Some type II diabetics don't see an endocrinologist, or theirs doesn't have much experience with patients that do intense exercise. If this is you, get a referral to a doc with that experience. When we moved communities, my wife's doctors also changed. Thankfully, because there is a culture of exercising in our current community, it meant that her new endocrinologist was familiar with some non-traditional thinking which has improved her control while she added intense exercise.

    It is a lot more work riding with diabetes than most of us have to deal with, so good for you for sticking with it. Eventually, you will learn how your body (normally-there are always exceptions) reacts and will figure out what/when you need to eat. Good luck!

  5. #5
    Back in the Saddle Again
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    If you don't get any good answers here, (which I hope you do, but it is a limited population), I would suggest checking the xc forum where people are in training, and also the rider down forum. Googling MTBR + diabetes might get better results than the site search - or you may just find people raising money for diabetes!

    I worked with this guy Iditarod Musher Bruce Linton No Limits Sled Dog Kennel when he lived in VT, he is type 1, but a successful triathlete and Iditarod musher who also does a bunch of outreach/inspirational stuff with the diabetes community, so don't hesitate to drop him an email. Barb from VT sent you.

    Glad you were able to find that milkshake. You don't want low blood sugar in traffic, that's for sure.
    I dropped Bruce a letter this morning. He has an impressive story and an inspiration.

  6. #6
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    ^^ That's great. I was so impressed how he quit and moved to Alaska and achieved his Iditarod dogsledding dream.

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