This week I took my first plunge in my local swimming pool as part of the JDRF Sponsored Swim challenge, and it has been both challenging and interesting in terms of my type 1 diabetes control.
Taking the plunge
I am taking part in a virtual ‘Swim the channel’ in the weeks up to April. That is 21 miles in 12 weeks, the equivalent length of swimming the English Channel.
I have completed four swims so far each of 50 lengths. The first one was tough as I didn’t realise it would take such a long time to swim that far.
This challenge is going to take some planning to fit it into my busy work life.
I had my younger son swimming with me on my first swim and both lapping me (he swam 80 lengths while I did my 50 lengths) and encouraging me to swim freestyle.
He’s not coming with me again!
The challenge and my type 1 control
The swim has been interesting in terms of my type 1 diabetes control. I began by reducing my basal insulin by 50 per cent for two hours for the first three swims, but still had a low blood glucose level and needed some juice afterwards.
After some advice from the diabetes online community stalwart The Grumpy Pumper who is training for the Ride LondonSurrey bike ride, on my fourth swim I reduced my basal by 80 per cent for an hour and a half and the result was much better.
I also read a paper from Pratik Choudhary about type 1 and exercise which I found useful and interesting.
As well as raising funds and awareness for JDRF I am hoping that I will get much fitter and improve my insulin sensitivity.
The challenge becomes international
The week after next I am travelling to San Francisco for a JDRF Chairmen and Chief Executives summit meeting. There is a pool close to our hotel so I am planning to carry on swimming there.
I have also persuaded the Chairman of the JDRF International Board of Directors Mark Fischer-Colbrie and a JDRF colleague from Texas, Margo Lucero to do the swim challenge too.
I hope you might consider sponsoring me, to do so please click here.