I was struck down with a vicious head cold and sinus bug this week which put my training on the back burner and required a real focus to keep my BGLs within a good range. Illness always makes managing my diabetes a little more challenging and this week required the usual effort to keep my BGLs within a good range. Generally I require 20% more insulin (basal and bolus) when I am sick which may be due to the illness and/or spending most of the day on the couch (which is unusual for me).
In the past I have often gotten really frustrated when I have been ill and thought about what I can’t do, what sick leave I have to take and my BGLs are right. With my recent attitude adjustment I focused this week on what was the best things I could do whilst I was sick. I couldn’t change being sick but I could influence how and when I would recover. So the things which I focused on where:
- Rest: I know that it is important to rest when I am sick as my body is fatigued from both the illness and also from my higher and more variable BGLs. Although I really struggle to just lay around I know that this is the best thing that I can do to recover. I try to enjoy this time as well as it’s not something that I often so.
- Nutrition: I take the same approach when I am sick as I do when I am in full training. I eat the highest quality meals to fuel my body to overcome the illness the same as I would do to fuel my body for hard training sessions and recovery. Without have much else to do there’s a opportunity to create some fantastic healthy meals when home sick.
- Hydration: You can’t underestimate how important adequate hydration is and it’s importance only increases when your body is under stress (training, racing or illness). Hydration is pretty simple; water, hydration formula’s and minimise consumption of caffeine which sadly means fewer coffees.
- Diabetes: This can be really challenging as you are trying to balance higher BGLs, less activity, increased insulin and high risk of hypo’s. For me, a 20% increase in insulin generally keeps my BGLs under 10mmol/L and although this is higher than I’d like I accept that this is acceptable when sick.
I also try to get outside during the day when I am home sick to get some fresh air, sunshine and a little walk around which all benefit how I am feeling.
Recovering after a couple of days of rest I can now focus on getting back into training. The graphic above shows the breakdown of my training over the last 8 weeks since I introduced specific strength and conditioning sessions into my program. This yielded great results at Port Macquairie and I will be continuing with this program. I am pretty happy with the spilt but I may work on a small increase in the run percentage as this is the leg which I really want to improve on.
A challenge for the coming weeks will be getting my BGLs right in the evenings so that I can complete a productive PM session. I have struggled recently to maintain stable BGLs late in the afternoon and then I have been hypo-ing during my evening training sessions. Balancing insulin and CHO for these sessions has been the challenge with a post session high BGL the result if not a hypo during the session. Plenty to work on but we enjoy the challenges don’t we? #T1D