Experiments, Wake Up Bolus, Breakfast, and Exercise

I was really fighting the blues through the tail end of last week and through the weekend.  Really bad.  What really kicked it off for me was some job stuff that I thought was going well, but wasn’t.  So once again I am looking for work.  Freelance, contract, full-time, part-time, a combination of all of the above – anything will help.  Since Cozmo closed down, this transition has been trying.  Most of all, it has been hard keeping depression at arms length.

stuckWith my current contracting gig crumbling away a little bit, I got pretty dang close and comfortable with depression again, and it sucks.  But depression is a weird monster, because as sucky as it is, there is a strange comfort in it.  Comfort is a bad word for it, because it is anything but comfortable.  But somehow it paralyzes you into staying stuck.  It has this magical power that convinces you the work needed to get out of the hole is WAY worse than the discomfort of actually being in the hole.  It is crazy stuff, and so damn powerful.

With a lot of help from you, I got myself back to the gym on Monday morning.  It was not fun, but the way I felt afterward was incredible. Thankfully, that feeling carried me into working out again Tuesday, and again today (Wednesday).  The exercise seems to be just what I need to fight away the depression.

Managing my blood sugars was not difficult for the workouts on Monday and Tuesday.  Those two days were mostly weight lifting, so it while it got my heart pumping, it didn’t seem to drop my blood sugar much, if at all. Maybe I just got lucky.  Today was a different story though.  I was to do one hour of walking on a treadmill.  I knew that I would need to do something to keep my blood sugar from dropping.  Maybe I can make my “wake up bolus” work for me instead of against me?

Shortly after posting about the wake up bolus, I have been eating breakfast each day to see if that makes things easier.  For me, there is no doubt that eating breakfast makes a huge difference in my day.  Just like Brenda said, it is like a signal to turn off all the extra hormone & energy dumping into my system.  At least, that is what it seems like.

So maybe if I skip breakfast today, and work out right away, the “non-breakfast BG rise” and the “exercise BG fall” will cancel each other out.  It’s worth a try, right?

I woke up at 94 mg/dl, was just a hair of 100 mg/dl when I arrived to the gym.  I walked at various inclines and speeds ranging from 3.2 to 3.5 for exactly 42 minutes.  My blood sugar on my CGM (or interstitial fluid sugar, but let’s not get technical) held almost steady the whole time.  There was such a slight downward trend, but I was pretty sure I could make it through the hour without going low.  But, at the 42 minute mark I felt a bit funny.  My CGM said 72 mg/dl, and I thought I was probably lower than that (which is usually how it works for me).  So I decided I should stop.

I have to admit that the blood sugar was not the only thing that made me stop.  I think it was just the one that put me over the edge.  I was bored silly.  I think that I’ll maybe try to mix in a few different things for cardio next time.  I was also worried about running late to an appointment.  To pat myself on the back, I had been thinking it would have been safer to skip working out in the morning, and go “later”.  You know, that mythical “later” that never happens?  Instead, I just went on ahead and worked out, and I’m proud of me for doing it.  Even if I didn’t manage the full hour.

When I got back down to my stuff, and actually checked my blood sugar (note to CGM users & potential buyers, THAT (the blood sugar) is the one that matters), I was at 86 mg/dl.  So I probably could have gone ahead and finished my workout.  I’m still learning, as we always are, and next time I’ll do it a bit different.  But I feel good because I was so close to pulling it off.  My experiment to delay breakfast almost worked!

I have more sore muscles in my body than I can remember having in a very long time.  But my mood and attitude feel so much better that this painful price is well worth it.

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Scott K. Johnson

Patient voice, speaker, writer, and advocate. Living life with diabetes and telling my story. All opinions expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent the position of my employer.

Diagnosed in April of 1980, I recognize the incredible mental struggle of living with diabetes. Read more…