Do you have a pump? Do you wear it when you run?

I am looking for feedback from other runners who have pumps. Do you disconnect when you run? If so, how far in advance of your runs do you disconnect? If you wear your pump when you run, where do you put it?
I have run all my races (no marathons-- just 10Ks, 8Ks, 5Ks) with my pump – I have just programmed a temporary basal and put it in a pocket on the back of my sports top (Nike makes great ones). Lately, though, I have been getting lower after my runs, so I have disconnected completely. But if I disonnect, then I sometimes I have slight highs about 30 minutes after reconnecting, which is usually after I take a shower.
Thanks for any input you can provide. I am really curious about how other runners with pumps manage!!

I’ve experimented with various methods, and I’m still trying to refine them. I don’t ever disconnect in advance of a run, but I generally do a 60 - 90 minute basal reduction (25% works for me) before my run starts. My basal is back to the normal rate at the start of a 30 - 45 minute run. I also have to eat about 10 carbs per mile (typically I’ll take 20 carbs 15 minutes before the run starts and then 8 - 10 every mile after the 2nd). Then at the end of the run, I may bolus 1 unit (depending on my BG reading) to cover the expected rise from the carbs I consumed toward the end of the run.

I generally start with a BG around 110 - 120 (and rising, because of the 20 carbs I consumed 15 minutes early) and end with a BG around 70 - 100. It’s not always that good, but more times than not it works out pretty close to that. I sometimes wear my CGMS during my run and when I look at the results (taking into account the 15 - 20 minute delay) it generally looks like I peak at around 140ish.

I have a waist belt with a pump pocket (I got it from Medtronic) that I wear when running.

Ken, thanks for your input. Sounds like you have a really good set of protocol. I also have the sport case thing for the pump that attaches on a velcro belt, and have worn during a few runs, but I get a little hot when I wear it.

I used to disconnect when running until a diabetes educator pointed out to me that non-diabetics don’t turn off their pancreas’ when they run. Doh! Good point.

I generally eat something before running, calculate my bolus as I usually would, then reduce it by one unit to account for the upcoming run.

If I’m running less than 30 or 40 minutes I leave the basal rate alone. However if I’m running over 40 minutes I’ll cut the basal rate in half starting at least an hour before I start running. I’ll keep it half for the duration of the run. (e.g. if my run starts at 8:00 a.m. and will end at 9:00 a.m. , at 7:00 a.m. I cut the rate in half for 2 hours.)

I don’t have any tracking data to write about, but I test every 30 - 40 minutes. I have an elastic belt I picked up at the expo before the Long Beach half-marathon that’s perfect for carrying glucsoe tabs or gels. I also took advantage of an offer for a free One-Touch Mini which I use exclusively for runs. It’s small enough even with its pouch to be virtually unnoticeable during a run. The only trick is keeping the belt away from my infusion site!

Like Ken, I’m experimenting with different methods and protocols.


Terry’s methodology seems very close to mine, with one difference - I set the temp basal an hour before I run, as he does, but I set the duration to the expected duration of my run. This means the full basal kicks back in during my run, but I was finding that right after a run, my BG’s alway started to rise, (probably from the gels I consumed toward the end of the run) so this seems to work for me.

Here’s the full explanation I emailed to Katie a few days ago, and a tidbit on running with CGM as well:

So my pump methodology these days is this: On runs over an hour long, I set a temp basal of 40 - 50 % with a duration of my expected running duration. I set the rate 1 hour before I run because of the time it takes insulin to “get active”. This means it restores to 100% during the run, but this seems to work really well for me. On shorter runs (depending on my current BG of course), I leave it at 100% and just eat a gel before starting and then again at 20 - 30 minutes.

I haven’t really had the itchiness factor yet with the sensors, but I have had two other running related problems with it while running. 1). when I sweat heavily (warmer runs), it often comes out as the IV 3000 patches don’t hold up well with excessive sweat. It’s a bummer to lose the $35 dollar sensor because the $0.50 tape fails! 2). The readings sometimes get way out of whack during the run - I think this is also sweat related, as they seem more accurate these days when it is cooler. I’ve gotten to a point where I don’t check my BG on runs of 13 miles or less - I usually feel the energy drain that precludes a low, and eat another gel (or every 30 - 40 minutes). But I’ll carry a glucometer and test every hour on runs over 2 hours long. The CGM is helpful to see when I start trending down, indicating that I’m getting close to needing another gel, but because the reading lags by 15-20 minutes, and because I’ve seen flaky readings in the past, I tend not to use it as the definitive answer. Prior to the CGM, and frankly enough running to get comfortable with what my BG is likely to do, I always stopped to test every 5 miles.

BTW - I am so with you Terry on the pain of keeping the belt (and in my case attached water bottles) away from the infusion site!

This group is great! I feel so understood by reading that others are finding the same challenges I am,

Hey, it’s the “Diabetic Runner”! Welcome. I saw your blog the first time the other day. I enjoyed the parts I had a chance to read. Glad you found your way to tudiabetes. This is a great group.