Tuesday, September 27, 2011

God's Plan on my Heart

Last week I agreed to fill in for a co-worker to teach Cardio Camp, a program we devised to help people get their bodies moving in a different way. Each week we come up with different workouts challenging our participants to think outside the box to get their cardio exercise. The camp meets at kaleidoscope of outdoor locations to keep the muscles from plateauing. 

Yesterday when I woke up.....and it was raining. Karma - I'm telling you.
But no worries. I'm convinced the rain will go away. 

By the afternoon, the rain changed. It was a now a downpour. Now I had to come up with a plan to move Cardio Camp inside. 


Eat. Obviously the answer was eat. 
And I ate a lot.....until I sat down at my computer and decided to work on a plan. 

I came up with a workout combining step aerobics in our group fitness room and cardio intervals using walking, hills, and speed  on the treadmill followed by a few fun drills, such as walking backwards or shuffling from side to side. All in all a good plan and made for an hour which went by quickly. 

I went home from the camp feeling great. Not only did I complete the workout with my participants (Can you say endorphins?) but I also did something that I love....spreading the passion for exercise to the people in my community. 

When I got home, I took a minute to reflect on my evening and thought I heard God whisper....."personal trainer".....

Hmmm, maybe it was time to stop denying God's plan and do what I feel is most important. I did a little research on personal training certifications, but decided to sleep on it. 

I started my morning by taking my fasting blood sugar....147. What?!? Are you kidding me? 

Oh yah, did I mention Karma? 
Ummm, did I mention my little carb rampage yesterday afternoon?
Yah, I probably deserved this. 

Fine. I was off to teach Body Flow. I decided to take my blood sugar again after class to see how I was doing. My class was wonderful. Seven women of varied ages and sizes trying to do what is important...keeping their minds and bodies healthy. 

I came home to take my blood sugar only to discover....oopf....no more lancets. Yes, I am brilliant. I forgot to put them on our shopping list. Ugh. 

Well, I guess taking my blood sugar will have to wait. Now I need to plan some exercise. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Somebody just like me

One of the biggest side effects of diabetes is the feeling of isolation. Many diabetics feel as if they are going through this disease process alone. However, with today's online community there is no reason to feel alone. 

Unless you are just like me. 

If I am wrong, shout it out! Let me hear from you. I need to find someone just like me. 

I read tons of blogs. I listen to podcasts. I "LIKE" people on Facebook. But none of them are just like me. 

Why am I so different? 
I'm a Type II Diabetic. 
That's me on the right!

  • Not all that unusual. 230 million people worldwide have diabetes. 95% of those are Type II Diabetics. 
I love to work out. 
  • I have always been someone to work out. Exercise is my release. I love to challenge my body in many different ways. I have a workout library in my basement with DVDs ranging from The Firm to Denise Austin to Kathy Smith to Cathe Friedrich. Three years ago when I was training for my first triathlon, I found out I was diabetic. I was swimming 1000 yards, running 6-9 miles and biking 12 miles a week when I received my discouraging diagnosis.  
Because I work out, I do not fit the typical image of a Type II Diabetic. 
  • My BMI is 25.0 - just outside of the normal weight range. So, yes, I should lose some weight. My goal is 10; My body is not perfect and I constantly fight the battle of the bulge, but I try my best to keep it all in check. 
Why do I want to find someone just like me? Because I want to swap stories. I want to share my successes and failures with other Type II Diabetics. I want to find people who are motivated to feel good about their goals & successes. 

Do you know a Type II Diabetic who works out 5-6 times a week? If so, let me know!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

30 Things You May Not Know

Apparently, I missed National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week last week. But I thought this was interesting when I read a couple of blog posts. So I'm going to take a stab at it.


1. The illness I live with is: Type 2 Diabetes
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: 2009
3. But I had symptoms since: I still don't think I have any.
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: Being aware of carbs.
5. Most people assume: That I did something to cause it....But I've always been a health "nut" with a dose of reality mixed in. It's genes people. Sorry.
6. The hardest part about mornings are: Cringing when I read my blood glucose monitor
7. My favorite medical TV show is: Who watches TV?
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: My computer
9. The hardest part about nights are: Knowing how much/what to eat before bed so I can have a good reading in the morning
10. Each day I take 2 vitamins.
11. Regarding alternative treatments I: Would be interested in reading, but I'm not going to do anything radical
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: Hmmm not sure. It all makes me crazy.
13. Regarding working and career:  It causes more stress in my life than it should - therefore affecting my blood sugars.
14. People would be surprised to know: that I'm diabetic. People are always stunned.
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been:  realizing my disease is progressive and fearing the path on which it will take me
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: Run a half marathon....now working on new goals
17. The commercials about my illness: frustrate me because I don't fit a stereotype
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: Just eating or drinking without thought
19. It was really hard to have to give up: the idea that I am a picture of health
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: reading diabetes blogs
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: probably not change a thing. I like to eat healthy. It's just hard to do sometimes.
22. My illness has taught me: an deeper awareness of what I'm doing to my body with every decision I make
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: Type 2 Diabetes is a choice. I'm not obese. I didn't eat myself into oblivion. I am type 2 diabetic due largely to genes.
24. But I love it when people: Are shocked when I tell them I'm diabetic, "You're diabetic?" Yep. That's me.
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: "Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up."
~ Thomas Edison

26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: Have a good cry. Then pick yourself up by the boot straps and move on.
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: The sad fact that it never goes away.
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: left me alone. Don't try to talk to me when I'm ill.
29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I want to be an advocate for diabetes
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: Like you love me!

Monday, September 19, 2011

I am a good diabetic

I am a good diabetic. So my good doc says.

But what does that mean?

My a1c tends to be 6.4 converting to an average blood sugar of 136. I exercise just about daily.

So why am I frustrated? Because after two years, I am still trying to lose this final 10 lbs. I mean COME ON ALREADY!!!!!  I mean seriously.

But who am I to blame? No one but me. You can't follow a plan for 21 hours of the day. Those three hours....three hours.....in those three hours you can take in a lot of carbs. Believe me. I know. And when are those witching hours?  Between 3 pm and 5 pm & anytime plus or minus one hour on either side of that range.

Finally, I decided I needed something to focus my energies. A reality check so to speak. I listen to a lot of podcasts. Some of them about diabetes, most about health & exercise, some about Disney.

One of my favorites is Dr. Fitness and the Fat Guy. If nothing else, they make me laugh. Dr. Adam Shafran and the Fat Guy, Lee Kantor, use their witty interview skills on many popular guests. One recent guest, Candice P. Rosen, discussed her book, "The Pancreatic Oath" which used blood sugars to identify.  foods which triggered symptoms in PCOS patients. Unfortunately, I was not able to find the book in my local Barnes & Noble store. Instead, I picked up Bob Greene's "The Best Life Guide to Managing Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes." The concepts were similar. Track your food. Test your blood sugar. Log the results.

I started testing my blood sugars almost daily. I tested in the morning. I tested after meals. I tested after exercise. I'm still testing. I'm still learning about how my body reacts to various foods. I'm a work in progress, but I'm no longer frustrated. I'm working toward a goal. A goal of understanding my body and how it functions.

And one day maybe - just maybe - I'll get there.