Friday, January 31, 2014

Three Lessons in One Day

Yesterday morning I was down to a handful of test strips. By a handful, I mean five.

I don't usually play it that close but I have Dexter now who tells me how I'm doing so I figured I'd be just fine with five test strips during an 8-hour workday and I'd head over to pick more up right after work.

I used the first one as soon as I woke up just to make sure Dex was on target. He was pretty close.

I did my cycling workout and then used my second one before breakfast just to make sure I was still calibrated after my workout. Again, Dex was pretty close to the target.

I watched Dex all morning but didn't do my midmorning calibration because I was rationing test strips.

I tested at lunch and he was off but not awful. I recalibrated him and had my lunch. If you do the math, we are not down to two test strips.

Two hours after lunch I was climbing quickly. Surprisingly quickly considering it was a pretty simple lunch that should have been easy to bolus for. Dexter told me I was 12 so I told my insulin pump I was 12 and took a correction bolus.

*set off first warning bell here*

At 3:30pm, Dex was still yelling at me that I was 12 so I took another correction. (Again with the warning bells please.) I left work and headed across town to pick up test strips and a few other prescriptions. Afterwards I headed to the grocery store and then I headed home. I checked Dex periodically and he assured me that I was coming down - steadily but not crazily.

I walked in the door of my kitchen at 5:15pm and he buzzed to tell me I was 3.9 and dropping fast. I dumped the groceries, tossed my coat down and told him to hold his horses while I rushed to the ladies room. I came out and he was buzzing again that I was 3.1 and dropping faster. So I grabbed a handful of glucose tablets and unloaded the groceries. He levelled out at 2.9 and began his slow climb back into the safety zone.

By the time dinner was ready, Dex said I was back up to 4.0. I used the second last test strip in the vial to double check. The first real blood test I had done since lunch. I was surprised to discover I was actually 9.4, not 4.0.

Uh oh.

Did I just treat a non-existent low?

Or was my low real but now Dex couldn't keep up with how quickly I was climbing and he thought I was 4 but I had spiked to 9?

I grabbed my new box of test strips from the bag figuring I'd double check. Imagine my horror to discover that, for the first time ever, the pharmacy gave me the wrong box. I found myself holding a box of strips for my old Verio glucometer that I haven't used in almost a year. Which meant that I had one test strip left and a very uncalibrated, and slightly cranky, Dexter as a backup.

I ate my dinner, called the pharmacy, explained the problem and headed back across town before they closed at 7pm. They apologized. I left cradling my precious test strips and added yet another handful of lessons learned to my diabetes collection of lessons learned.

Lesson One: Dexter is there to help but he can't be left in charge of the ship for too long or she heads off course.

Lesson Two: Test strips are precious. Don't run yourself too low or you end up sacrificing good numbers.

Lesson Three: And for heaven's sake, check your pharmacy order before driving out of the parking lot.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Tiny Details

I've been using Training Peaks, an online program, to log all of my workouts in 2014. I'm really looking forward to doing my first monthly report on how much running, cycling and swimming I did.

I am also, as it turns out, becoming a little obsessed.

Just a little mind you.

See I used to log all of my runs which was pretty easy because I would just upload the distance and time from my watch and be able to read my average pace, calories burned, elevation etc etc.

Swimming has been a little trickier to document. I've been really diligent about remembering every single thing we did and writing it down in the comment section of my daily workout. I plug in the distance and the time which works...until it doesn't. I mean how does one calculate distance when they are tethered to a bucket? Or tied to a stretch cord, swimming full speed and yet going nowhere?

And don't even get me started on how to record my Bending Crank Arms workout. I'm working hard for an hour but a lot of that time is spent off the bike doing squats. My cadence meter and gps watch report a pretty measly workout (13k in 60 minutes) which is a rather pathetic pace if I were cycling outdoors. So I write down 325 squats in the comment section and try not to be too bothered by the distance and average speed of my workout.

When I wasn't recording my rides and swims, I didn't care about these things.

Now I am. And I do.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

If I am Ever Kidnapped...

Sunday morning, I was down to 20 units in my insulin pump. Enough for breakfast and lunch but not enough for dinner.

Being the scrimper that I am, I told myself that I would change my pump right before I headed to my parents' house for dinner.

Then I got busy living my life and plum forgot.

Until they put out a plate of cheese and crackers and I reached down to bolus...and saw 8 units left.


I explained the situation and asked what was for dinner.

Lots of protein and veggies with a few carbs here and there. I did the math and thought "I think I can do it!".

I was going to be there for about 3 hours. My basal rate is just under 1 unit/hour which left me with 5 units for dinner. Not enough to eat what I wanted but enough to keep me, I hoped, from shooting up off the top of Dexter's graph.

I bolused every single one of those units and we headed to the dining room.

I filled up on pork chops and asparagus but still had a few bits of potato, the smallest piece of pie possible, no bread, no crackers and no ice cream.

I climbed to 9. Then 10. Then 11.

When I was down to less than one unit left, I headed home. As I pulled out of the driveway onto the snow-covered roads, I had a moment of horror. What if I drive off the road in the snowstorm? What if it takes five hours for help to arrive? What if anything at all happens on the 20-minute drive home?

I have no insulin left and Dexter was making it very clear that my blood sugar was now 12 and climbing.


Nothing happened other than Lucky ran dry on the way home and began his incessant alarming to make sure I was well aware. I walked in to the house, headed straight for the butter compartment and pulled out a fresh vial of insulin. I was good as new in 5 minutes and my blood sugar was on its way down again within 15.

I always feel better when I'm topped up with a four-day supply of insulin on my belt. That way if I drive into a ditch, am kidnapped or stuck in an elevator for the weekend, I have a chance of surviving until help arrives.

Any other T1s out there who hope that, if they are ever kidnapped, it happens on the day when they are fully loaded with insulin? Anybody else do a quick check to make sure they have enough emergency carbs, water and insulin before they get in the elevator...just in case?

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Why the Hell Not?

I'm a rather ambitious person in that I try to do my very best at everything I undertake - be it work, fitness, diabetes care, cooking, blogging or whatever.

That being said, I'm not exactly famous for doing more than I said I would do. I do what I say I'm going to do, and I try to do it well, but I don't overshoot the target.

I've written before about the mental block I seem to have when I'm running, for example. If I have to run 10k on a given day based on my training schedule, I can run 10k. But the thought of running 12k is enough to make me stop at 8k. If I'm supposed to run 10k, I'm running 10k, period.

I love running but really. Enough is enough.

Which makes my behaviour on Sunday morning more than a little bizarre.

See, on Saturday morning, it was bloody awful out. The temperature was only -8 but the wind was howling, the snow was blowing and the Weather Network said it felt like -20 or something ridiculous.

I couldn't take the idea of running into a freezing cold headwind so I headed downstairs (again!) for a trainer workout.

On Sunday morning I woke up to see the trees standing stock still outside my window. And the sun was shining (kind of) which is more than it has done in weeks and weeks.

Doug checked the weather and it was -17C but hardly any wind.

I immediately thought "that's freezing! Maybe I'll just do some yoga stretches and take the day off".

Before I could voice that, Doug said "are you running?".

So I stubbornly said "yes" because I didn't want to wimp out or babble about one excuse or another. Doug had run the day before (on a treadmill) so I figured he'd be hopping on the bike. I didn't want to do nothing if he was doing something. So I said yes.

I got dressed which took about 15 minutes because of all the layers. We're talking three long-sleeved shirts, two pairs of pants, two hats, gloves and mitts, socks, shoes and YakTraks.

During the getting dressed period, I convinced myself that it was perfectly reasonable to make this my easy week and run 10k instead of the 16k I was supposed to. I would just switch with next weekend's easy run and no one would know or care.

I went down to the kitchen, checked my BG (8.0), ate one date which was enough to get me through 10k and got ready to go. As I did, Doug came down in...running clothes.

"What are you doing??" I demanded.

"Going for a run" he replied.

"How far?"



So now I'm torn. He's running 16k. I've just settled on 10k. Once I decide on a distance, I'm pretty committed. Plus I only ate one date and didn't drop my basal insulin.

Did I mention that I'm stubborn as all get out?

I sighed, ate another date, and told myself that I would run straight down a major road into the countryside. I could turn around at 5k, 6k, 7k or 8k...but I knew I'd turn around at 5k. Because who wants to run 16k when you're only planning on running 10k?

I headed out. It was freezing and I felt 15 pounds heavier because of all the clothes I had on. I was warm enough...but just barely. I ran 3k, and then 4k and was starting to feel pretty good. Surprisingly good actually. I hit 5k and only about 10% of me wanted to turn around which is 90% less than normal by the time I hit the turnaround point. So I ran 6k and still felt good. I told myself to run one more k and then turn. But at 7k I decided it was only 6 and a half minutes to do another one and then I'd be able to say that I ran 16k too. So I did.

I turned around and bounced back home. I passed Doug on his way out because he had left after I did. We stopped for a second, assured each other that we were fine and carried on.

The last few minutes of my run my energy started to fail and I walked into the house with a BG of 4.1.

Two dates, 11 pieces of clothing and a wee bit of a stubborn streak = 16k instead of 10.

Why the hell not?

Monday, January 27, 2014

One Thirty Seven

If I say the number 137, that probably doesn't mean much to anyone.

If I do what I do when I want to annoy my family and ask you to "guess what??", you probably won't guess and, after a few tries, probably won't care too much either.

That's ok. I'm not bothered. Most people, I've found, don't like to make random guesses at things while an excited person just keeps saying "nope, guess again".

So I'll tell you what 137 means, and why I care.

Last Friday, we swam 100m as fast as we possibly could. I did it in 1 minute and 37 seconds.

That is super duper fast for me. I used to struggle to break 2:00. Then 1:55. Then 1:50. Doing anything under 1:50 with any kind of consistency is still a struggle.

Last Friday, I swam a 1:37 and actually felt in control the whole way. Not once did I think "I can't hold it". Not once did I think that this might be the day when I finally throw up in the pool. I just blasted through it, touched the wall and looked up in anticipation as I waited to hear my time.


Now, I must clarify a few things.

This is not something I think I could do without all the work that we did before. Friday's session was cords and buckets which means that we were working hard while tethered to the wall or while pulling buckets behind us.

Usually a cords and buckets workout feels like a slow slog. Things were changed up a little bit this time.

When tethered to the stretch cord, we were told we had to go 'all out' for one minute. We would get 90 seconds to recover and then do it again. Four time. Going all out for 30 seconds is fine. Forty seconds sucks. Fifty seconds is ridiculous. One minute takes almost as much mental strength as it does physical.

After the cords, we moved over to the bucket lane and were told to do 4x50m sprints on 2:00. Pulling two buckets behind us.

Then back to the cords. Then back to the buckets. By the end, we were all pretty exhausted and many were nauseated too. I was exhausted and smiling. I love this workout!

We were told that the last thing on the list was a 100m sprint - without cords or buckets. Free as birds.

I pushed off the wall and feel like I was flying.

When I got back I heard the number 137.

And I grinned!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Relationship Issues

As with any new relationship, there will be growing pains.  

There will be days when you work in perfect harmony, as if you could read each other's every thought, almost before they even think it. 

There are days when you wonder how you ever got involved in the first place and are not sure if all the effort will be worth it in the end. 

And then there are days when you realize that being somewhere between those two extremes is the best place to be. Perfection isn't real and certainly doesn't last beyond the first fews dates...if that. And, while they can be frustrating at times, they really are wonderful. They really do make your life better and they really are worth the effort. 

Dexter and I are past the honeymoon phase. There are still entire days when I gaze at him and cannot believe how amazing he really is. Days when he reads every blood sugar and is bang on. Days when he responds to my ups and downs and charts every trend with precision. We work as one and, as a result, I can easily do what I need to do to stay in range with nothing but rolling hills on his little graph. 

Then there are days when he's off. By a lot. He tells me I'm climbing and have reached 15.0 and yet, when I check, I'm 10.2 and, when I check again, I'm 9.0. My rolling hills have transformed into mountain ranges with jagged peaks and drops as we try to calibrate. 

Those are the days when he wakes me up at 3am with a four buzz alarm to tell me that I'm 2.8 and, when I check, I'm 6.0. He won't believe me when I tell him that I'm find and keeps alarming until, out of frustration, I walk around for a few minutes to get my blood moving in the hopes that this will help. If it doesn't, I eat a fig newton, bring my blood sugar up to 9 so he thinks it's 5 and go back to sleep. My last thought as I drift off is that I will change him in the morning but, when I wake up, he's back to being perfect again and I sigh and let him hang out for another few days. 

I admit that relationships take two people to make it work. I know that I don't always help the situation. Like the other day when I changed him. When it came time to enter my blood sugar readings, I had just had a large, carb-loaded dinner. He tried to adjust based on what I told him but I was changing so quickly that he couldn't keep up. He buzzed that I was 14 but I was only 8. He buzzed that I was dropping quickly but I was now at 12 and climbing. He buzzed later that I was 2.8 but I was 6.0. It took hours for the two of us to get our act together. 

I'm sure he was just as annoyed with me as I was with him. 

And yes, there is a kind of perverted comfort in that. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014


So I skipped my run on Tuesday morning.

Not because I was tired. Not because I was sore or injured. But because it was just too damn cold out there.

Instead I headed downstairs, hopped on the trainer for an hour and cycled up a mountain.

Am I getting wimpy in my old age?

I used to run in cold much worse than it has been this year. Cold that make this Polar Vortex thing seem rather balmy. I have a coat that I only pull out when it's minus thirty degrees for heaven's sake and I haven't worn it yet this year.

And yet this year, anything under -15 degrees has me scrambling downstairs on to my bike.

Which means that, so far this year, I have only managed two runs per week rather than my usual three.

Doug assures me that I will be able to pull of my March half marathon because a) I am in good shape and b) I am cycling and swimming as well so my body is still moving and I'm keeping my fitness level high.

I don't know if I buy it though. I mean I can pull off a long bike ride even if I haven't been on the bike for a few months. It might not be pretty but I can certainly do it.

Running is a whole other beast and even though I have a good strong base and have been running for years now, I am still surprised at how quickly I lose my running fitness when I take a few weeks off.

Good news is that weekends have been warm enough to get my long runs in so I haven't lost much that way. It's just my weekday runs that are a little less frequent than I'm comfortable with. And that has made my weekend long runs a little harder than they should be.

On the other hand, I'm getting a lot more time in the saddle than I normally would this time of year. And my friend Jeff assures me that this will help me in my summer triathlons.

Still though, I do feel a little wimpier this winter than last. I wonder what that's about?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Supplement Overload

Remember a few months ago when I went to see a naturopath?

And he sent me for all sorts of blood tests that confirmed that I was NOT low in iron or B12?

And then he sent me home with a list of vitamins, digestive enzymes and fish oil to add to my diet?

Well, I added them. As instructed.

I even worked out a vitamin schedule to fit them all in without overlapping the things that should not be overlapped.

- one digestive enzyme tablet and a vitamin D with breakfast, along with a teaspoon of fish oil in my breakfast shake
- vitamin C (sometimes with iron) around 10:30am
- digestive enzymes, a calcium and a K2/D3 gel at lunch
- vitamin C in the afternoon
- digestive enzymes with dinner,
- and a multivitamin before bed.

I've been doing that since October. Every day.

I'm getting kinda sick of all the pills I have to take. I'm also getting kinda nervous because the supply I bought when I started this whole thing will be running low within a few weeks and the cost of replenishing is making me nauseous.

On top of all that, there have been a rash of articles lately in the newspapers and magazines as well as CBC interviews with people talking about the amount of money we waste on vitamins and other supplements that are often unnecessary and sometimes downright harmful.

I don't feel any different since I've started taking them. I'm not sure if I'm supposed to or not but I don't. No more energetic. No 'healthier'. I don't sleep better. My blood sugar doesn't behave any differently whether I take digestive enzymes before a meal or not. The only thing I've noticed is that I have not yet been sick this year. Considering the amount of cold germs I'm exposed to every day, that is a pleasant surprise.

Still though I'm beginning to doubt my regimen. And beginning to wonder if I really need to be taking all that I'm taking.

My diabetes doctor put me on vitamin D years ago. My naturopath agreed.

My family doctor put me on calcium late last fall after getting the results of my bone density scan back. My naturopath agreed.

The other stuff? My naturopath put me on it all and no one else has had any input to agree or disagree. So I don't know what they would say if I asked but I can guess they would tell me that most of it is unnecessary.

Does that mean they are right?

Why should I give one doctor's opinion more weight than another's.


So I continue to take what I've been taking. Until they run out. And then I decide whether or not to get more. At this point, I'm leaning rather heavily towards not getting any more of any of it - except vitamin D and calcium.

We'll see.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Time Trial (aka Spinning Like a Madwoman)

You know, I'm kinda getting into this whole cycling on a trainer thing.

I usually reserve regular trainer workouts for those times when I'm injured and can't run for two months. Both times that happened I went from nothing to three trainer workouts per week. Once recovered I went back to running and the cycling tapered off again.

This time, I'm not injured. Running is going well. So is swimming. But I'm still managing to get two cycling workouts in per week. Sometimes three depending on the weather.

Some days I bend crank arms. Other days I ride the Bow Valley Pass which has me climbing up a rather nasty mountain for the better part of an hour.

This past Sunday, Doug pulled out a yet untried video and suggested we try it.

So we did.

It was called Time Trial and was created by CycleOps, the guys who build the trainers we use.

The workout was exactly one hour.

It started off with a warmup (of course).

The main workout involved three 5-minute power sets where we had to keep our cadence above 110 rpm (in a fairly easy gear). Spin, spin, spin like crazy until we're dripping with sweat and can hardly feel our legs. Between each set we had 5 minutes to recover but we still had to keep our cadence up at 90 rpm.

Once we survived the three sets, we moved into a 12-minute steady state where we had to cycle for 2 minutes at 95-100 rpm followed by 2 minutes at 80-85 rpm and back and forth for twelve minutes. It was supposed to keep us at our lactate threshold and get us used to pushing hard in races.

Finish with an 8-minute cool down and we were done.

And I mean done.

I really really liked that workout. I'm used to workouts where I have to power up mountains in the hardest gear. I don't do too many workouts that involve spinning madly for extended periods of time.

It was surprisingly hard.

It hurt my lady bits more than I care to say.

And, after our long runs the day before, it felt like the perfect 'recovery' workout.

I think I might add Time Trial to my basement cycling repertoire.

I just need to figure out a way to tie a pillow on to my bike seat...

Monday, January 20, 2014

Hips and Shoulders

Back in my university days, when I wasn't particularly active, I decided to sign up for a weight-lifting  workshop. It was a few hours and we were taught how to lift weights safely. We left with a list of weights for each machine and how many sets and reps to do. 

I even learned what sets and reps were! 

My biggest issue was to remember not to lock my elbows or my knees. Keep them strong but loose was something that took me a while to master. But master it I did and, almost twenty years later, I still make sure not to lock my elbows or knees if I'm doing any kind of weight bearing activity.

About ten years ago I decided to try yoga. As I slowly learned all the different poses, I also slowly learned how to keep my knees in line with my ankle so as not to hyper-extend. Again, it took a while but I still remember and still make sure that any stretch I do has my hips, knees and ankles lined up properly. 

My latest challenge is trying to make my shoulders and hips talk to each other. 

It's a swimming thing. 

See, when I first started swimming, I developed a very barge-like stroke. I plough through the water in a very inefficient way. Ideally, I should have a lovely body roll that lets the water slip by me and reduces drag. Kinda like this:

I've been working on it and was starting to get the feel for how my shoulders should rotate. 

Turns out that my shoulders now rotate very nicely. But my hips don't move a bit. As my coach says "I can watch your bum all the way up and down the pool. It doesn't move". 

So my next body position to master is one that is going to involve me learning how to use my core to keep my shoulder and hips moving in sync. I'm sure, like all the other moves, once I get it I'll get it. In the meantime though, it feels really awkward and is rather hard to maintain for any length of time. 

Practice, practice baby! 

Friday, January 17, 2014

Friday Fragments

Sometimes it just makes sense to end a week with a few bullet points.

  • Doug asked me to spare for him on his Tuesday night curling team. A team made up of four pretty talented, experienced, men. They were playing against a team of four pretty talented, experienced, men. I showed up with my purple broom, purple vest, scarf and perky ponytail and announced that I was "Doug" for the evening. I held my own when it came to throwing and swept my heart out for them. In fact I was sweeping so hard at one point that my lip balm went flying out of my pocket and skidded down the ice. "Is that your lipstick?" one of the gentleman asked. No, that's my lip balm was my response as I stuffed it back into my pocket. I don't think they knew what to make of me but we did end up having fun. And, while we didn't win, we came darn close and held our own until the end. And, for the record, I was recruited to spare for the other team in a few weeks. 
  • On Wednesday morning we had a pretty busy workout at the pool. From the minute we arrived we were given one command after another (pull 400m, swim 10x10, do this, do that). About fifteen minutes before the end of the workout, as I worked my way through 30x50m, I started adding it all up. OMIGOD I thought, she's trying to get us to do 4000m in 90 minutes. We didn't quite make it due to lack of time but I managed to do 3650m before calling it a day. That's a pretty big jump from our usual 3000m. "Today was a distance set" she said as we left. No kidding.
  • I have had my new bangs now for two weeks. During those two weeks I have had several people ask what was 'different' about me. I answered them all with 'I used to be blonde' and their response was 'oh, ok, that must be it'. These are people I have worked with for years. For the record, I have never had anything other than very dark hair. I was also supposed to present at a meeting the other day but the chair didn't think I had arrived yet. I had to waive to get her attention and she was shocked that it was me. Apparently I look a little different now. 
  • Oh, and I may have been asked to be the keynote speaker at a conference in April. It's a conference put on by Animas and it is geared to diabetes educators, nurses, dieticians, pharmacists etc. They want me to kick things off by telling my story and talking about how I use diabetes as a motivation to do all sorts of things. I'm so honoured that they asked and so excited to do it. Remember back two weeks ago when I listed my goals for 2014? One of them was to do more diabetes presentations. Looks like I'm well on my way.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Don't Shoot the Messenger

I love Dexter. He takes great care of me and warns me of any variety of impending doom. He's my sidekick in more ways that I can count on one hand.

On the other hand however, he's good at what he does and he's not good at what he doesn't do. If that makes any sense at all.

Dexter warns me when bad weather is approaching but he has no skills whatsoever to guide me safely to shore. Or, for that matter, to even tell me what the cause of the bad weather might be, what direction it's coming from or where it's headed.

He just knows that it's not good.

The other day, I woke up with a blood sugar higher than normal (10.0) but not horrible. That's fine, I figured, I'm going for a run anyway and that will bring it back down. I ran 8k and came home to a blood sugar of 6.0.


I bolused, as I usually do, and had the breakfast that I usually have.

I showered and went to work. I kept checking Dexter and kept expecting to see a relatively flat line but, every time I checked, he had climbed another few notches. By 8:45am, I was 16 and climbing. Very odd.

I bolused and headed into a two-hour meeting.

During the meeting I kept checking like a hawk. I was high and still getting higher. I kept bolusing small doses (1-2) units every fifteen minutes, and finally got down to 12.0. By that point I was starving so I bolused twice the usual amount and then ate a Larabar.

I spiked to 20 within 30 minutes. I kept bolusing during the meeting and, by the time I was back in my office, I was down to 17.

I had 45 minutes until I had to head into yet another meeting. I did some math and decided to take a huge bolus (10 units) for lunch hoping it would knock me back into range. I entered that into my pump, hit go and listened to the sound of the insulin being delivered. As I listened, I began to smell the unmistakable smell of insulin.


There was something wrong with my infusion site. Insulin wasn't getting in as it should. In fact, it was leaking all over my shirt! When I had been bolusing 1 unit at a time, it wasn't enough to notice, but a huge amount like 10 units was obvious. We had a faulty site and I was smelling rather gross.

Thankfully, I live two minutes from the office so I drove home, changed my site, replaced my insulin and headed back to work. I bolused a careful 4 units, not knowing how much from my original dose actually made it into my system, gulped down my lunch and headed to my next meeting.

Of course, I spiked again after having eaten but then began a slow but steady free fall over the course of three hours. No scary drops but a steady decline that had me going low just as I arrived home after work.

Dexter, who could do nothing about it, just beeped, buzzed and downright carried on for most of the afternoon.

Here's what the three hours after lunch looked like:

I almost went from one corner to the opposite corner. Pretty crazy. 

Even crazier, here is what the day looked like. I started off a little high, ran (notice the missing dots when I left Dex at home), had breakfast and then all hell broke loose. 

Worse thing of all was that this happened on the first day of my period. The day when I'm notoriously low all day. I arrived to a day of meetings armed with dates, Larabars and other snacks to keep me going. I left smelling of insulin, bleary-eyed and headachy from hours of high blood sugars. 

Thanks Dex, for letting me know what was going on. Too bad there wasn't a damn thing you could do about it.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Change in Focus

As diabetes-related paraphernalia evolves so do the things that I focus on in my diabetes care. 

When I started out down the diabetes road, I was armed with a glucometer that took 30 seconds to give me a blood sugar reading and two needles. One that I used twice a day to take long-acting insulin and one that I used up to 8 times a day to take insulin before meals and when my blood sugar was too high. 

My goal: avoid high blood sugar at all costs. By default that meant that I had a lot of lows. 

A few years later, I had a glucometer that took 5 seconds to give me a reading and I had an insulin pump that allowed me to fine tune my insulin doses and adjust for things like exercise and illness. 

My goal: avoid high blood sugar at all costs and try not to go low either. By default that meant that I would go high, bolus, go low, eat, go high, bolus and so on. Not always that up and down but I did go  through a lot of fast-acting carbs.

Today, my diabetes army includes a glucometer that tells me my result in 5 seconds and that I can use to remotely control my pump. I have a waterproof insulin pump that I wear every second of the day except when I shower (because even though it's waterproof, there is nothing to 'clip' it to when I'm in the shower). I also have Dexter who shows me a graph of what my blood sugar is doing minute by minute. He buzzes when I'm over 12.0. He buzzes when I'm under 4.0. He also buzzes when I'm climbing or dropping too quickly. 

My goal: avoid highs and lows but also, for the first time ever, try to keep a steady blood sugar as much as possible to avoid any unnecessary ups and downs. 

Avoiding high blood sugars at all costs doesn't mean that I never had them. Heck no, I had them all the time. 

Avoiding highs and lows was also impossible because I had those regularly too. 

The point was never to not have them - that is impossible and would only lead to insanity if I tried. 

There is no way I can avoid ups and downs. There is also no way I can keep a steady blood sugar for more than a few hours no matter how hard I work. Diabetes, by its very nature, makes that impossible. 

The difference is that, before Dexter, before my waterproof pump and my snazzy glucometer - it wasn't even an option. 

Now it is. Now I know by looking at Dexter that, if I wait fifteen minutes after bolusing before I eat, I actually can stop my blood sugar from spiking. Now I know that, by watching Dexter like a hawk, I can prevent a lot of highs or, if they do happen, I can deal with them much faster than I used to when I relied on blood sugar checks and 'how I felt'. And now I stop most lows before they happen because as soon as I start dipping below 5.0 or as soon as I start showing a fast drop, I deal with it. 

I don't feel any different than I did before Dexter came into my life. I can only guess that the more time I spend in a 'steady state' the easier it is on my body. I don't use any less insulin than I did before Dexter came to town but I don't go through nearly as many fast-acting carbs either. In fact I haven't restocked since he arrived. 

I am due to go for my A1C blood work in a few weeks. By then I will have been using Dexter for two months. I wonder if he will have made enough of a difference to affect my A1C. Even if nothing changes in that department, it just feels better to know that I'm a little less up and down that I used to be. 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


This just feels like a good day to write about random snippets of things.

In the past week, for example, my blog was found by complete strangers who were searching the following things:

"carbohydrates in Cabot Trail whiskey"

"how to train for a 7k marathon"

"My curling shoe is too slippery"

I'm ok with the first one. I'm not sure how different Cabot Trail whiskey is from regular whiskey and I'm not sure that either have any carbs worth mentioning but it's kinda funny that someone found me that way. Perhaps they figured out my secret love of the single malt?

As for the second one, well, I can't really expect every person on the planet to know that there is only one marathon distance and that it is 42.2k. It is a little teeny bit sad though that my blog comes up as a place to find the answer of how to train for a 7k marathon.

For the record, I have never ever trained for a 7k marathon nor do I plan to.


The curling shoe one - well, I'm not sure how to say this but curling shoes are just about the slipperiest things on the planet.

Other snippets...

Since January 1st I have been faithfully logging all of my workouts on Training Peaks and, as the days go by, I enjoy looking at the pretty little pie graphs on the side of the page. I have one that shows the distance I've gone in each sport (relative to each other) and I have another that shows the time spent doing each sport. The distance one doesn't mean much since it doesn't make much sense to compare the distance I swam to the distance I've cycled. It takes me 2 minutes to do a kilometre on the bike, 6:15 to do it running and about 18 minutes in the pool.

Time spent doing each activity is interesting though. It's been an odd few weeks because the extreme cold has forced me to switch a few runs for bike rides on the trainer but, so far, in the month of January, I have spent the exact same amount of time doing each of the three sports I do.

I spent 3:30:00 time swimming (33.3%)
I spent 3:27:30 time running (32.9%)
and I spent 3:32:41 time cycling (33.7%)

As fun and random as those times are, it did get me thinking about time spent doing things.

Example: an Olympic distance triathlon is divided up, for me anyway, this way. The 1500m swim takes just over 30 minutes. The 40k bike ride takes about 90 minutes. The 10k run takes about 70 minutes.


Does that mean that if I were training for an Olympic distance triathlon, for every hour I spend in the pool I should spent three hours on the bike and 2.3 hours running?

Not that I would be that strict about it of course, particularly because I train for different events simultaneously (open water races, half marathons and triathlons) but it does bear thinking about.

If nothing else, it's yet another reminder that, except when we're experiencing cold weather alerts, I don't spend nearly enough time on the bike.

A few more snippets:

I had a discussion the other day with a co-worker who is not (I should make this clear) a runner. We talked about running races and how most of them provide finisher's medals. I argued that finisher's medals are really important for a lot of people and that crossing that finish line, no matter how far the race, if often a huge accomplishment for someone. They have had to overcome a lot of physical as well as mental challenges to get to the start and even more to get to the finish. The medal symbolizes this.

He argued that medals are for winners and, in almost every other sport, that is who they are reserved for. In running, he argued, we should all get a t-shirt or a hat or something but only the actual winners should get a medal.

We argued back and forth a few times and I finally had to agree to disagree. I understood what he was saying but I couldn't agree with him. There is something really motivating about getting a medal and I didn't think that should be taken away from people. And I did point out that the winners often get a different medal so they still stand out as winners.

As with most conversations I have, I got me thinking. I have brought home a medal from every running race I've ever done. On the other hand, I have never received a medal for any of the duathlons or triathlons I've done. Doug, on the other hand, often comes home with one because he actually places in his age category. I was bothered the first time I finished a multisport race without getting a medal simply because I was used to getting medals. Now I don't really care but I do know that, if I ever do get one - it will be because I earned my spot on the podium. I can guarantee that it will be my most prized.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Best Day Ever?

On Saturday morning I woke up to balmy temperatures. It was 8C by 9am for heaven's sake! I pulled on my running hat instead of my toque for the first time in over two months. I wore two thin shirts, no jacket, no gloves and I headed out for a 13k run.

Instead of the sound of snow crunching under my shoes, I got to listen to the sound of water rushing down the streets as the mounds of snow melted at an alarming rate.

I spotted all sorts of things that had been buried for weeks in snowbanks. A rusted dog collar. More than a few christmas ribbons. Mitts. Enough Tim Hortons mugs to start my own franchise. Probably a  dollar's worth of dimes, nickels and quarters. I didn't pick any of those up - I was holding out for a $100 bill that I was sure would emerge somewhere during the big melt. If it did, I wasn't the one to find it.

I also managed to pick a route that kept intersecting with city garbage trucks that were out picking up old, discarded Christmas trees. Every time I passed one, I was engulfed in the smell of crushed pine needles. If there is a better smell in the world, I couldn't name it.

So far, the day was going very well.

When I got home, I stretched and had my coffee. Instead of heading up to shower before lunch, I lingered around a bit and then had lunch before my shower. Nothing crazy I know but it's not my typical routine.

Trust me though, there was method to the madness.

I wanted to have lunch first so I could bolus the last few units of insulin and get my pump down to almost empty. Meaning that I would then remove the infusion site before my shower. At the same time, I also removed Dexter as it was getting beyond the time when he needed to be changed too.

And for the first time since the last week of November, guess what I got to do??



Dexter gets changed every 7-14 days. My pump gets changed every 4-5 days. When the stars align for them both to be changed at the same time, this girl does a happy dance. You have no idea how nice it is to shower without having to be aware of where all of your cyborg parts. To just be able to shower is a luxury that cyborgs like me sometimes dream about. I admit it, I may have stayed an extra few minutes in the steam just relishing the moment.

By 1pm on Saturday, I had run 13k, enjoyed a taste of spring, been engulfed in the smell of pine needles, and had my first naked shower in almost two months.

Did I mention that I had grilled cheese with Franks Hot Sauce for lunch?

How's that for the best day ever??

Friday, January 10, 2014

Life's Lessons

Lessons learned this week:

Lesson One
- do not, I repeat, do not almost but not quite yank your infusion site out right before a four-hour meeting, leaving it barely holding on

- should you do that despite my warning, do not, and I mean it this time, go to your office and tape it back on with masking tape

- if you've ignored me to this point, do not, when you get home, decide to remove the masking tape and replace it with something a little more 'comfortable' to secure the site for a few more days until you run out of insulin and actually need to change it.

- masking tape, as it turns out, seals itself very effectively to your skin and it's a challenge not to remove said skin as you peel it off hours later. On the other hand, I do have a few strips on my stomach that are completely devoid of any form of body hair.

- masking tape, as it turns out, also bonds very nicely with your infusion site, and the only way you're going to get it off is to completely destroy the site, yank the cannula out of your body and rip that too

- masking tape saved me during the meeting and avoided an emergency trip home but I had to change the site two days before I should have because of the destruction it caused

Lesson Two
- insulin does freeze when you run outside

- I had heard stories but never, despite some pretty chilly runs, experienced it

- Thursday morning, after a rather bone-chilling 8k run, I bolused for breakfast and alarms started ringing.

- I waited a few minutes, primed my pump to make sure things were moving, and tried again. No problem. And my numbers were within range all day so the flash freeze didn't seem to harm the potency

Lesson Three
- despite the cold - running is almost always better than not running

- despite the early morning wakeup call - swimming is almost always better than not swimming

- despite the dreary basement, spiders and lack of fresh air and sunshine - cycling is almost always better than not cycling

- people complain about the dark, cold winter. Heck I do too. I've learned over the years that running, swimming and cycling every day makes the days feel a little less cold, dark and dreary. Ive also learned that the early morning winter runners are the ones who smell the first hints of spring in the air. And the early morning swimmers are the ones who first notice the sun coming up a little bit earlier every day.

- as for early morning cycling on the trainer - all I can say is I do it because it keeps me fit and ready for the day when it's finally warm enough to take the bike outside and hit the streets again. Soon enough my friends. Soon enough.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Splish Splash

Habits aren't always good for us. If we eat a snack before bed every night, whether we're hungry or not, that's probably not a good habit. If we always watch television after dinner, even if there isn't much good on, that's probably not a very helpful habit either.

On the other hand, when you are used to getting up at 4:50am three mornings per week and used to crawling out of bed and heading to the pool, and used to working out for an hour and a half, heading home having breakfast and then putting in a full day at work, the fact that it's a habit is probably a good thing. It's much easier to do it regularly than sporadically.

And when you've fallen out of that habit for a month, it's a bit of a shock to the system when you try to step back into the ol' routine. Particularly the 4:50am part.

Thankfully, my body remembered the steps even though my brain was a little fuzzy. I remembered to put on my bathing suit. I remember to bring water and NUUN and I remember to eat a date before leaving the house. I remembered my skin cream, my new lock for my locker AND the combination.

Another reason to be grateful was the fact that I was heading back to the pool at the beginning of January. Which means I was heading to the pool with a lot of people who have had a few weeks off, some people who are making good on their resolution to join the Masters class and some folks who are stepping up their training for the upcoming triathlon season.

The lanes were much busier than usual and I shared mine with three other people. On the other hand, our workout was one designed to get our bodies moving again without pushing us too hard to quickly.

We swam distance - but not too much. We did drills - but not too many. We did speed work - but not to the point of exhaustion.

I slipped into the pool fuzzy-headed and blurry-eyed.

I slipped out feeling wide awake and ready to go.

The first step is always the hardest, the second is much easier and, before we know it, we've formed a habit. Looks like I'm well on my way to reforming mine. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Painting 2013 by Number

On Monday I mentioned that I ran 888 kilometres in 2013.

Being a lover of numbers, I decided to look back on the year and see what else I might have tracked.

Turns out that I tracked quite a few things:

I ran 109 times last year. If you subtract the 8 weeks I was off due to injury it means that, during the rest of the year, I ran once every 2.8 days.

I try to run three times per week which, technically, means I run every 2.3 days so I managed to be pretty close to that during most of the year. Yay.

Four months last year I ran over 100km and December was the highest month - topping out at 111km. I figure that was partly due to my lack of swimming and partly due to the fact that I was on vacation and much more inclined to run a few extra kilometres since I had all sorts of free time. The other high months were the ones leading up to half marathons - which makes total sense.

The lowest mileage months were the summer months when I was busy doing triathlons and not putting in the long distance weekend mileage I would typically do. Again, makes sense.

The other number from my running spreadsheet was my weight. I wrote it down on January 1st 2013 and it was 155.5 pounds. I got on the scale on December 31st, 2013 and it read exactly 155.5 pounds. Apparently I'm in my happy place.

This time next year I will have a full twelve months of swims and bike rides logged as well thanks to my number workout log on Training Peaks. That should make for some fun number crunching.

I wrote 236 blog entries in 2013. The words poutine, crazy rabbit and Cabot Trail are the search terms that most often bring people to my blog.

In 2013, diabetes drugs and supplies cost me, my benefit provider and the government a total of $8,036.42. Pump supplies cost $2379.87. I receive $2400 every year from the government to cover those so that worked out nicely. I also spent $1840 to buy Dexter and one month worth of supplies. That entire cost was covered by my work benefits. The remaining prescriptions I needed in 2013 (test strips, insulin, cholesterol meds etc) were covered 80% by my benefits. The total cost for all those was $3816.55 of which I paid $763.31.

I have used four Dexcom sensors so far. The first lasted 14 days. The second lasted 13 days. The third gave me trouble from the start and I gave up after 7 days. The fourth is 7 days old and going strong. They are only supposed to last for 7 days so I'm already two weeks ahead. It will be interesting next year to figure out how much money I spent on sensors...and how much I saved by dragging each one out a few extra days.

I paid $674.16 in race entry fees last year. That was for two half marathons, four triathlons, two open water swim races and Boxing Day ten miler. I have four hats, three shirts and three medals to show for it. I also paid $576.25 for masters swim classes and $710 for running shoes, running clothes and swim supplies (bathing suits, goggles etc). I paid $700 in massage last year - and was reimbursed for $500. I did not track what I spent on chocolate milk, NUUN tablets, GU gels and Clif Builder bars but I'm sure it's close to another $200. That's a lot of money on athletic pursuits.

Interesting when it all gets put together isn't it?

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Goals 2014 - A Work in Progress

The start of a new year is always a good time to try new things. It's not the only time to try new things of course, but when the calendar switches over to a new year and a blank page, the timing just feels right.

On December 31st I entered my last run into my 2013 running log and saw the grand total appear.

Eight hundred and eighty-eight kilometres.

Not the 1000k I had hoped for back in January 2013 but a very fine number nonetheless.

On January 1, 2014, I did not start a new running spreadsheet. Instead, I registered online at a website that allows me to upload my Garmin results and track all of my workouts (bike, run and swim) in one handy location. Doug has been using it for a while now and talked me into it back in November. I, being one who likes things to be neat and tidy, decided to wait until the new year to start. And I did.

On January 1st, I logged my first session on the trainer. On the second I logged my 2000m swim, on the third, I logged another bike workout and, on the fourth, a 10k run.That ended the first week and I was able to see a pretty graph and weekly summary that told me the total time and total distance I worked out as well as the total time and distance for each of the three activities.

It also tells me fun facts like calories burned and, if I decide to upgrade beyond the free version, lets me enter all sorts of other information like meals, training plans, pace goals etc. For anyone interested - the website is

Speaking of goals, I guess it's time to set some 2014 goals down on paper isn't it? Last year, I had a list of them and did a little monthly report on how things were going.

This year, I'll still do that but some of my training goals will have to unfold as they get closer. This year there are a few important family events (a wedding! and some milestone birthdays (hello 40!)) that are making it a little tricky to pick which triathlons we want to do this summer. Wedding dates and birthday celebrations must be booked first of course and then triathlons can be chosen on weekends that don't conflict.

So I have a pretty good idea what I want to do - I just can't officially do anything about it quite yet. In the meantime I'm tossing a few goals out there to get me started and will firm them up as we go. Everyone ok with that?

Running goals

I'd like to run the Chilly half marathon on March 2nd in Burlington. I've never run that race before and I figure it will keep me honest and force motivate me to keep training through the worst of the winter.

I'd also like to run the Niagara Falls Women's half marathon again on June 1st.

A fall half marathon would also be good but I'm not sure if I want to do Niagara Falls again or try a different one. I'll decide as it gets closer.

Finally, I want to race on Boxing Day again. It's such a fun day and a perfect post-Christmas workout. Having so many running friends there makes it even more enjoyable.

Swimming goals

I definitely want to complete a few more open water races this summer. The schedule isn't up yet so I'm not sure the dates or the distances but I'll aim for two and see if I can squeeze any more in.

Realistic goal is to race two 1.9k races. Ambitious one is to try a 3k or a 5k race.

Triathlon goals

I'd love to do four tris this summer. I'd love it even more if two of them could be Olympic distance. There aren't too many of those 5150s around so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the family events don't conflict. I have already compiled a list of all possible triathlons within reasonable driving distance so, once dates are set, it's a matter of deciding what we're doing, signing up and figuring out a training plan.

Other goals that have nothing to do with physical fitness

I want to learn how to make proper Israeli hummus. The kind made with dried chickpeas and drizzled with high quality olive oil that I enjoyed all over Israel last year. I've already bought the dried chickpeas and I have a traditional Israeli recipe (as well as a sister with lots of experience in Isreali cooking). I also want to serve it with properly warmed pita bread.

I want to learn how to braid my hair properly. I taught myself how to French braid but I'm not very good at it yet and the braid slips out because I can't seem to braid it tight enough. There are so many fun hairstyles with braids and my goal is to figure out how to do one of them nicely...before they go out of style again.

I want to continue working hard to pay down my debt. I made a lot of progress last year which I'm proud of. I also renegotiated my loan in December and, by increasing the payments, cut the remainder down from three years to two years. My credit card survived Christmas with a manageable balance that I should be able to pay down within two months and get back to zero again. I want to keep it there. Doug and I have two big trips planned this year and saving has already begun in earnest. Ideally we can save enough to not come back with any extra debt.

I want to improve my golf game this summer. Last year I played with Doug as well as a few girlfriends who were all at my level of skill. Let's see if I can build up my courage to perhaps join a women's league or other regularly scheduled golf game with people I don't know who can push me to get better...and help me get over my nausea of playing in front of strangers.

I want to do more things related to diabetes and advocacy. Last year I did a presentation to a group of local diabetes educators and loved it. I also wrote an article about how to support someone with diabetes and loved writing that too. I'd love to do a few more presentations this year - those really jazz me.

Goals I haven't yet decided if I actually want to do or not

Buy a wetsuit. Jeff, I know what you're going to say about this one but, as the time approaches for me to start seriously thinking about getting one, I'm getting all heebie-jeebies about it again. I feel like a little kid who prefers to run around without a diaper on rather than be constricted in layers of padding and clothes. For the record, I do not swim in a diaper, nor do I swim naked (at the local pool anyway). What I do at the lake at the cottage when no one is looking is my own business. 

Increase my running speed. Of course I want to do that - I always want to run faster than I do. I'd love to run a half marathon in under 2:15. I'd love to knock another minute or two off my Boxing Day run. I just worry that, if I set this as a goal, I will push too hard and get injured...again. For now, I'll focus on running well and running strong.

I'm sure I'll add more as the year unfolds but that's what my goal list looks like at the moment.

Here's to another year of setting goals...and reaching them.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Running on Carbs Returns

Hi folks! Happy New Year and welcome back after a two week hiatus.

It feels like a lot longer than that in some ways and yet, as vacations often do, it sped by much too quickly. Ready or not, it's Monday January 6th and I'm back to blogging, back to work and back to my pre-work, 5:30am swim workout. 

All after having stayed up way too late last night watching the first episode of Downton Abbey Season Four.

Actually, let's be honest. There is no way I'll be able to survive a 4:50am wakeup call after going to bed at 11pm. So my swimming career resumes on Wednesday. 

Even with a bit of a sleep-in, heading back to work on less than 8 hours sleep after two weeks off  should guarantee an interesting day full of misplaced pens, dropped books and forgotten details. Thank goodness for green tea.  

The last two weeks were a wonderful mishmash of quiet time with Doug, family gatherings, friends new and old, delicious meals, red wine, television shows, leisurely magazine reading, trying new recipes and, despite all odds, getting in almost daily workouts. 

For those of you who know what Coles Notes actually are, here are the Coles Notes version of the holidays.

In the Kitchen

We hosted my family for a pre-Christmas dinner and tried our hand at blue cheese scalloped potatoes, stuffed tomatoes and a ham. We rocked it all. Thankfully we had a lot of leftovers because they descended again the next evening after their power went out.

The ham bone was then transformed into a very delicious French Canadian split pea soup that kept us warm during the oh so cold days after Christmas.

On another cold night we attempted a shrimp jambalaya from my Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Cookbook which was tasty but a little too labour-intensive for my liking. Way too much standing by the stove and stirring to make sure the rice didn't stick.

We then made a homemade pasta sauce using an army of oven-roasted cherry tomatoes, parmesan cheese and a wee bit of cream. The roasting tomatoes smelled fabulous and the sauce was assembled in minutes. It was delicious and went very well with the steak Doug made. The only problem was that Bubba Gump's idea of four servings looks a lot like our idea of eight servings so we ended up with a lot of pasta and sauce.

Keeping Fit

Over the holidays we started almost every day with a bike or a run. It was nice not to set the alarm and to get up whenever the sun started shining into the bedroom. We ran a lot - on warm days with clean streets, through snowstorms and on snow and ice-covered roads.

I also happily headed down to the basement several times to ride the bike and even managed to bend those crank arms twice. In those two workout alone I did 580 squats. Insane.

We ran the Boxing Day ten mile race in Hamilton. I went into it not expecting to do anything other than run the thing and have fun doing it. Little did I know what was about to happen. It turned out that changing up my running route back in November and adding a few hills to every run made a difference. I ran stronger than I have in a long time. As I approached the 9k mark of the race and easily ran to the top of the nastiest hill of the route, I began to think I could actually PB. I had run the race twice before and did it in 1:45:something and then last year I did it in 1:42:42. I did some quick math and figured that, if I did not stop at all AND if I managed to keep each of the last 7 kilometres under 6:20 min/k, I could finish the race in under 1:40:00. I pushed hard. I ran into the wind and refused to yield. I ran up and down the smaller hills and refused to slow. The closer I got to the finish,  and as each kilometre's time beeped on my watch, the more realistic my goal became and the more I refused to give in. I hated the thought of backing off and then seeing a 1:40:something on the clock at the finish.

As I ran the last kilometre up a gentle but tiring uphill, I spotted the finish line and then, as I got closer, I spotted the time clock. I saw it change to 1:39:00 and I picked it up a bit. I crossed the line at 1:39:25 and, for the first time in my life, knew what it felt like to dig deep and pull off a time that didn't even look like an option when the gun went off. It's been over a week and I'm still grinning about it!

I'm not exactly grinning here but I'm pretty happy and very proud! 

I also headed back to the pool twice last week after a month of dry land work. I swam 1700m the first day back and felt it in my arms, back and abs for two days afterwards. I rested up and then went back last Thursday and did 2000m, feeling stronger already. I signed up for the next Masters class on the way out, knowing full well that the first few sessions are going to be rough. I'm rested now and ready for another few months of tough workouts. Triathlon season is fast approaching and I want to be at my best. Which means sucking it up for a few weeks and finding my swimming fitness again.

Other Bits and Pieces

I had an appointment for a hair cut and colour a few days ago. I was looking through my magazines for a photo of a hair colour I liked. I found this one and brought it in with me.

The colourist and my hair dresser liked the photo so much they convinced me to try the cut as well as the colour. 

So for the first time since Grade Nine, I have bangs! And my hair turned out a lot redder than it looks in the photo. A tribute to my Irish 'roots'. 

I also took advantage of the Boxing Week sales and bought some boots that are pretty fun, a few sweaters...and may have splurged at the Coach Boxing Week sale. 

Dexter and I came through all the holiday feasts and are still friends. He kept me in line and helped me prevent highs and lows before they happened. In fact I am proud to say that I had several 'no hitters' during the holidays. No hitters are days when I don't hit the high or the low line on my Dexcom graph (high is set at 12.0 and low is set at 4.0). I've also figured out an overnight basal rate that seems to be working well. Once I settle in and my dinner insulin has left my system, I flatline until the morning (which sounds awful but, in blood sugar speak, it's not - trust me). 

Other than that, I have a bunch of goals set for 2014 and a few more in the works. 

Those, my friends, will have to wait until tomorrow. 

It's good to be back - I've missed you.