After six months of waiting, in January 2018, they hooked me up with an insulin pump and CGM! I was so thrilled to be able to dose in tenths of a unit (I’m really sensitive to insulin) and have an idea of where my blood sugar is every five minutes or so. Now, as a “bionic woman”, I was cleared to begin running by myself again. With my renewed sense of independence, I decided to start marathon training again. My husband, Marty, decided that he would run the race (and most of my long runs) with me anyway and we signed up for the Naked Prussian marathon. It’s called a “naked” race because there is no swag (medals, t-shirts, etc.) for finishing.
Training was a struggle, I was slower than I had been in a long time and was afraid I would never be able to run that distance (26.2 miles) again. Before my diagnosis (after completing my third marathon) I decided I hated starting training from scratch so much that I would always be sure to have my next race planned whenever I finished one. This allowed me to train continuously and keep building on my progress. After being diagnosed with T1, I was back to square one again and many days, I just wanted to give up.
With Marty and the rest of my family’s support and encouragement, I pushed through. Our mantras during training and the race became, “(Rebuilding) brick by brick”, “Hills build character” and “just keep putting one foot in front of the other.” Figuring out fueling to maintain normal blood sugars was tricky, figuring out how to carry all of my testing supplies was also tricky and when I started thinking about racing, I couldn’t imagine relying on the aid stations. Who knows what carbs/fuel they would have available or not, if I needed them. I decided the best course of action would be to carry all of my food with me so I knew exactly what I was taking in as I ran.
In March 2018, I finished my first marathon as a T1 diabetic with Marty right by my side. I bawled my eyes out in sheer joy when I crossed the finish line and only had one slightly low blood sugar around mile 2. There are few things better in life than accomplishing something that you don’t know is possible and this was one of those things for me. I can’t say it any better so I’ll leave you with a quote from 2018 Boston Marathon Champion and 2 time US Olympian, Desiree Linden.
“Some days it just flows and I feel like I’m born to do this, other days it feels like I’m trudging through hell. Every day I make the choice to show up and see what I’ve got, and to try and be better. My advice: keep showing up.” -Des Linden
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*The content on this site is not intended to be medical advice. Always consult your doctor before beginning a fitness regimen or adjusting your diabetes management strategy.