"I was diagnosed with Type 1 at 15 minutes past midnight on 1 January 2000 - what a start to the new Millenium! Thanks to the clinicians at King's my diabetes is better managed by an insulin pump. I broke my back, legs and avulsed all the ligaments in my knees at the end of 2005 and it has taken me considerable effort to get fit again.
However I am now in training to undertake Diabetes UK's 2012 'Three Peaks Challenge'. So I shall be managing not only my fitness and blood sugars while I climb, but the claudication in my calves probably developed as a complication of diabetes. But I am looking forward to the challenge and raising sponsorship for research into diabetes. It will be well worth all the hard work.
Training is going well, but it is certainly taking over my life and making me quite tired. I went out for a run at 7.30am this Jubilee morning in the rain when I would much rather have stayed in bed.
Last weekend I was in West Dorset and walked approx 10 miles on Saturday and Sunday (26/27 May) before heading back to London. The weather was hot and West Dorset around Beaminster and towards Lyme Regis is quite hilly!
I climbed Blencathra via Sharp Edge and the Old Man of Coniston on consecutive days over the early May Bank Holiday to improve my fitness. Earlier in the year I attempted Scafell Pike in January, but the light stopped us getting to the summit as well as the ice. In February I attempted Snowdon but then the snow stopped me getting to the top.
I am going to North Wales mid June to do some more mountain walks. But in the meantime I am going to the gym, cycling and walking to keep myself fit. I do get despondent that I am not going to be fit enough to do the Challenge.
More difficult in many ways is the claudication I get in both legs when I am either walking very fast or doing a long ascent. The lactic acid build up in my calves burns so much that I have to stop and wait until the worst of it has eased off and then start again. I know the only thing I can do about it is to keep going and walk every day but what a double whammy! Not only Type 1 but claudication as well.
When exercising/hill walking I manage my Type 1 by reducing my basal rates - I am on an insulin pump and eat some carbohydrate every 45 mins to one hour; as endurance trekking burns up the glucose more than when I am running or cycling. I do not want to eat, but need to prevent hypos. I could also drink sports drinks but I would no doubt drink too much, while with dextrose tablets and or a cereal bar I am more controlled."
Words by Gwin