T Minus 19 Days, and Counting

In 19 days I leave my home in San Francisco for an enormous, international Ballroom dance competition. I’m a competitor. I’m a serious, professional, internationally competitive Ballroom and Latin dancer with type I diabetes. You know, like Team Type I founder and top-tier bike racer, Phil Southerland. Or current Tour Divide competitor Tony Cervati. Yeah, I’m like those guys.

Ok fine. I’m probably nothing like those guys. You know how I know? A 1 C.

Sure, I got a result below 6 once. It was 20 years ago, and turned out to be a lab error.

I just saw a video clip the Tony Cervati recorded in the run-up to his start on the Tour Divide, and it inspired me to start my OWN blog, about MY run up to the Eurogames. So now I’m starting…

Diabetic Super-Athlete’s log: t-19:

0600 hours
Diabetic super-athlete Coles (hereafter “DSA Coles”) spent the night awake and feeling crappy with a blood glucose of 200 that WOULD NOT COME DOWN. First off, why feel so bad at only 200? Pffff. BIG DEAL! I’ve slept through WAY worse sugar than that! The culprit? Corn chips. Corn chips eaten 12 hours prior, and served with a healthy dose of insulin, followed by another… and another… DSA Coles feels like super-■■■■. I am not about to have a morning of champions.

0900 hours
DSA Coles may not feel like a super-athlete this morning, but she can still have a breakfast of champions! Oaties! Made with unsweetened almond milk, cuz cow’s milk aggravates my super-colotis. It’s true, friends, and don’t be jealous. DSA Coles has not 1 but 2 autoimmune diseases. Let’s all give a big hand for our multi-mune multitudes, cuz I KNOW I’m not alone here.

The way oatmeal’s presented in the media, you’d think this tasty slop CURES diabetes (and heart disease, and obesity, and bad hair and…). I’m here to tell you, friends: it doesn’t. No one could possibly have researched this as thoroughly as I have.

10 00 hours
DSA Coles’ super-athlete fitness aspirations are temporarily put on hold in favor of sitting in the car and staring at nothing. Funny, my hocus-pocus super-tracker (aka Dexcom 7) thinks I feel fine. But honestly, this is not a normal activity for me, under ideal conditions. DSA Coles switches to back-up plan “good, old fashioned blood test” to confirm suspicions. Ah yes. Suspicions are confirmed. I’m not crazy, but my hocus-pokus super-tracker is.

11 00 hours
Finally, a good workout. DSA Coles begins to feel the part.

16 00 hours
This is totally unsustainable. Today is the only day I’m EVER going to have this kind of time to put into writing stuff down. Oops. I mean “blogging”… in the bloggesphere…

Diabetopia. That’s my new word, as of half-way through writing the word “bloggesphere”. I invite you, dear reader, to help me make “diabetopia” the Next Big Thing. Since you’re reading this on tudiabetes.com I’ll assume you have diabetes, too. So here’s how to use my word (and no, you won’t owe me any money): ironically. It MUST be used with sarcasm and irony, and if you even consider using it in a phrase like “my new raw food diet is a total diabetopia” then right now I’m revoking your diabetipia rights. Vacations spent battling wildly fluctuating blood sugars, job interviews and public speaking engagements ambushed by hypoglycemia, Las Vegas-style brunch buffets… THESE are times for my word. And I don’t mean to be exclusive, but this is an in-group word (meaning: the only non-diabetics allowed to use it are the loved-ones who’ll be piecing us back together when our diabetopia gets a tad too exciting).

16 25 hours
DSA Coles feels like crap. Some charlatan fed me a bunch of Sun Chips, for which I have no idea how much insulin to bolus, because I NEVER eat Sun Chips (shut up, you, about last night’s corn chip fiasco. Totally different).

I bet that there are diabetic super-athletes, somewhere right now, blogging about their high-powered training schedules, their heroic calculations (powerGelCube + altitude /resting heart rate ÷ current blood sugar ∛yesterday’s total CHO intake × wind direction = what I should eat now) and their awesome feats of diabetic endurance and will power. As you can see, I’m not doing that. Those guys are inspiring and impressive and set a standard we should all look toward in our own self-care. They’re also a little annoying.

I’m a diabetic super-athlete, too. I train in my sport 6 days/week, plus go to the gym 5 days/week for additional strength and stamina training. I know about nutrition and fitness and glycemic index and all manner of technology for people with diabetes (which I’ve had since I was 3). At this very moment I’m wearing two different machines (as are, probably, a lot of you, dear readers), and am about to begin training session #3 for today.

All that said, you saw how my day’s gone so far…