Monday, January 28, 2008

New Loop - good times

Well, I met Dave and Wayne (Russ has been out of commission due to crazy back muscle/nerve issues) for a Sunday morning run yesterday. We took off from the swim center and Dave wanted to show us his neck of the woods. Well, it wasn't but 2 minutes into the run and Dave veers off the gravel and into the woods. Its barely light and we are running on some squirrley trail in the ice and snow - tripping over stumps and cursing - and off Dave goes just loving it. Well we went to the end of the Greenway and just kept going - past the humane society, down a gravel road to 421 - across the river and back down Bamboo for many a very pretty mile. We hit Deerfield and traffic and wound back to the start. It was in the 10 mile range, I would say and quite a beauty of a run. We did our share of laughing - Dave's blood sugar was perfect the whole time. I however stopped in at the quickie mart and had to buy 3 candy bars (for a dollar each! Rip off!). I checked mid way through just because Dave was - I was 45. Mmmm snickers really does satisfy. Almost as good as McDonalds. It was a great run. This week I am sending out 400 fundraising letters to the schools - so we'll see if we can catch up to Johnnyvail in the fundraising thing.

Friday, January 25, 2008

A Triabetic Birthday

Well, the day was not without interesting things happening. I woke up at 56, ate, went for a run. Not even to the McDonalds, I was 38, ate, felt terrible and walked a bit. Jogged the rest of the way in, I was 43. Was low by 2nd period and ate a bit. Lunch - 125, 4pm - 38 again. After dinner (and cake) - 41, so more cake. 4am this morning - 263, yay? Last night was fun, regardless of the low day. We had wanted to get Dave's family (specifically, Em who is heavy with child) a dinner that they didn't have to cook. But we turned it into a combo - Triabetes get together (John and Maureen came over), birthday, and Em dinner. It was really great. Zoe and Ashley made some incredible cards...I really can't get over how well Zoe (just turned 4) is drawing and writing...she's further along than I was when I was 27. Ashley spent the entire day making the cake from scratch, baking bread, making the dinner, cleaning the house, oh yeah - and taking care of the kids. I absolutely don't know how she does it. And the cake was like heaven - yellow, with this chocolate buttercream frosting....I've got to be the luckiest person on the planet. At school we had an early release due to snow showers - I, of course, had my class outside and away from the school at an environmental site - someone had to run down and yell "they just made the announcement - class is switching in 5 minutes!" Well, it was a 10 minute walk back. But as a student said "its all good". Yes, indeed, if any statement could sum up my birthday - that would be it.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Front Page!

Well, if you haven't checked out the really fantastic journalistic and photographic work of Marie Freeman, then pick up the Jan 22 edition of the Watauga Democrat (or go to Marie really did a good job for us and the timing is nice because now that the Triabetes project summary is done, the workhorses of the team (Nate, Peter, Michelle, and John) are really tracking down sponsors. The photo is kind of funny - see we had just finished an easy 17 miles... Kidding! We showed up at the swim center, changed in our cars, and ran exactly 40 yards. Dave and John and Ashley then went on a run and I went in for a swim with my daughter. In other news, Zoe has been having some stomach pains the last few nights - we took her to the doc to make sure there's nothing major to worry about - and there isn't - she had a good night. But I did what most parents do, I wished I could take her know, "just give it to me, God, instead" - well it seemed to work. I was absolutely miserable last night. "Take it back! Take it back!" But all is well now....I hope. Besides it might have just been from a falafel dinner gone wrong. Also, I got a call the other night from someone at NSTA (national science teachers assoc) about a Vernier grant I wrote. At the time I was miffed - it was the start of the school year and our principal wanted the new teachers to go for this grant - well, I didn't have the time,etc,etc,whine,moan,etc - but I did it anyway - and now I get to go to Boston. Nice...especially as there might be a personal monetary award that might help me get a bike for the triathlon! Cool.

Monday, January 21, 2008


Well - John is just dying to go for a has something to do with the fact that he is insane. It's 9 degrees the sun. He wants to do 10 and then go for a swim. So we meet at school and head out. About 4 miles in, under the shadow of the Mickey-D's arches....the Bermuda triangle for blood sugar...I say I need to test - I feel slow and I'm sweating under my eyes. He does too. "Holy Crap!" he says "I'm 31(?)... I've never been this low in my life!" Welcome to the dark side, I say. I'll see if I can top that one. Then the screen displays "LO". HA! says I (thinking that LO is less than 30) "Gotcha". We laugh. We eat a bit and try to figure out how the $1.37 I have in my bag will enable us to survive. Orange Juice? Coke? If only Dave were here (he was called and emailed but left us hanging) - Dave would know what to do - He'd find some little bit of edible mulch with 0.1 grams of sugar in it. So a few minutes pass - John tests again - "Holy &*!%.... I'm 23!" At this moment I begin to worry a bit...Not about him, of course - but about the fact that we are both using One Touch Mini meters...if his reads 23, then mine should read 23, which means that "LO" is somewhere less than that....Hmmm. I test. 27. At least it was on the way up. If you added our sugars together it would only be 50! That struck us as hilarious, so we walked to the light and ran back to the school. There we used my other meter and I was 83 and he was 57, which means the readings seem to be accurate. Wow. I put another dollar in my bag...just to be safe.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Swing LO, sweet golden arches

Ok, we go to lunch (Chic Fil-a) and I load up on fries and sweet tea and 3 units because I was 188 - and off I go. My plan was to meet Ashley at the library in an hour and a half. It was snowing and the tunes were playing and I spent some time running the lonely greenway trail...very nice. After about 70 minutes, I was really feeling good...I always said I never get runner's high - but here it was... I was cruising and could go forever. That doesn't happen to me so I stopped to test.
LO - that's all it said.
I've been low 30's and it registered. Its really kind of funny - Dr. Matt had just this week written up my eval and he was concerned that I was getting low too much. He thought being low too much would dull my body's ability to recognize the symptoms... yeah, I know - what a quack! Anyway...I thought my current situation might need some divine intervention, I thought. And there it was ... like the sign that Constantine saw in the sky from God ... "In this sign, you will conquer"
The Golden Arches.
So I jogged in, got a hot caramel sundae for $1.07 and off I went. That, my friends is the way to do a run. I have rerouted my runs to go past Mickey-D's at strategic intervals... Tomorrow, I might go longer which would mean "sprinkle on the nuts, too!"

Triabetes connection and the snowplow

Well, its Saturday and I have a few moments at the start of the day to catch up a little. We had a snow day on Thursday and some good sledding - then rain glazed over it. I hoped for a snow day yesterday but it was only a 2 hr delay. I went for a run yesterday morning and really did pretty well - there was snow and ice everywhere but the sidewalks were cleared so off I went. Just as I was finishing and heading up to the high school I looked up and there was a snowplow barrelling toward me cleaning out all that ice and muck in the gutter...I looked to my left...guardrail. A little panic set in and moved to a spot where the ice was thinnest and I just got ready to huddle over and take the ice cube wave that was about 6 feet high. At the last second, the snowplow operator lifted the blade. I sprinted in so sorry for cursing those guys for keeping the roads cleared enough to let us have school.
Zoe and I did some sledding down the driveway at the farm and we built a "Snow Zoe" and I'll have to go get a pic. I'll edit this if I do. Overall, it was a good day. We made a good pizza and had Jon and Carole over to discuss some things.
As for the Triabetes connection - I have this student, Matt. Well, he really isn't my student but he checks in with me from time to time. He's a diabetic as well and a runner. Well, he went to some diabetic convention perhaps in Florida and he saw that one of the people there was a marathoner so he went to meet him. Well lo and behold, the person was wearing a Triabetes T-shirt! The kid was so excited and told him about me. The person was Brian Foster, fellow Triabetic! They talked for a bit and Matt came back from Christmas break super excited. On kind of a related note, we are going to arrange to put a local team of diabetics into the 24 Run for Africa...and I've already got 2-3 students committed - Matt being one of them.
We took some photos for an article in the paper yesterday about the Triabetes project. I have secretly arranged for Marie to photoshop some muscles in on me. Sorry, John and Dave. That article should be out soon and Dave and I are drafting a letter to send out to the entire district to raise money for Triabetes.
If anyone wants a T-shirt you can buy them online now! Only $20 and that includes shipping! The ginsu knives never offered a better offer! Seriously - they are great shirts and it really helps us out.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Long time, no blog

After a long break and a great talk with an old friend, Marie (who is working on getting a Triabetes article published) - I was convinced (told) to get off my butt and blog. Thankfully, I just discovered that we are on a 2 hour delay this morning and everyone is still asleep...rare.

OK, I guess you are always in danger when you think you are in the least that's the lesson that all horror films teach. We made it through the holidays in fine fashion, except for a little sickness...however, that kept us from traveling which was almost a gift. But we did decide to make it to Greenville to visit family. It was a whirlwind tour - we left friday after a workday and zoomed down before rush hour. Teri and Mallory, Lee, Alex, and Gray came down the next day and we all went ice skating and in general had a wonderful time. It was so great to see Zoe just swept up with those kids and take off. Zoe had only been skating one time before and I just had her in my arms the whole time. This time started the same but then we got this PVC contaption that she could hold on to. Well, it didn't take long and she had her "skating legs" - we were zooming around. Then Mallory took her and the smile never left Zoe's face for the next hour. I put my belt around the thing as a tow rope and off they went. Lee and Alex would later take turns pulling and they would go really fast and Zoe (with Mallory holding on behind) just soaked it was really special to see. I thought to myself "sometimes parents aren't designed to let a child really grow..they are too concerned with safety"

That night Zoe and I went to Greenwood to see my parents - she was asleep before we left the driveway. We had a good visit and then got home a bit late and tired. The next day we spent a few hours with Steve and Jan and Morgan and Zoe was in heaven much so that on the 5 minute drive back to maw maw's she lost it.
Well, I started the next semester the next day (and had a lot of work to do) and Ashley thought that she and the kids would just stay a week or a half week - it would give me time to get a lot done and she could just kind of enjoy the warm weather and family. So I went back - had trouble sleeping....the house was just so quiet. It was no better monday night - tuesday I had a diabetes workshop (wore the Triabetes T) and was going to tell everyone about the Triabetes project at a point in the workshop - then I get a call from Ash - she had gone to the doctor to figure out what she was feeling in her abdomen - they said that it might be an aortic aneurism and that she'd have to have a CT scan in the morning.
Holy cow.
5 Minutes later I was on the road. Got to Greenville - everyone (her parents, me, her) were pretty stressed....although Ashley was still cracking some pretty impressive jokes...rather dark, but funny. To make a long story short it turned out that it is her aorta that she feels, but no aneurism or tumors.
5 minutes later we were on the road. Actually that's not true - we went for runs and it was simply wonderful - I went about 7 miles, it was hot (no shirt, mucho sweat) and everything was beautiful - the trees, the sun, the road....amazing what a health scare avoided can do for you. Ashley's dad called later and said the same thing hit him - he just never felt so good - he said he could run the 20 miles home without a thought.
We got home and slept. I missed 2 of the first 5 days of school, but by friday all was kind of in order. I was back to being really nauseated in the pool and behind on my grading.
In other Triabetes news - I totally wussed out on Russ and Wayne Satruday - they were going to do an 18 mile trail run. After the week we had, I really thought it better to be around the family and not take half a day. However, it cannot be avoided - I wussed out. I get out on the parkway saturday and man did the bike hurt (and that was 18 miles on the bike! can't imagine running it). Of course it was uphill and cold, but it still hurt. I rode the trainer last night for an hour while I talked to Marie about Triabetes and life in general. I got my strips but there's no way they will last 3 months - Michelle has taken care of us however and sent some to bridge the gap. And right now I am trying to figure out a way to get out of running this morning.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Ah, the Holidays

Well, Christmas and the New Year has come and gone in fine fashion. Its been a great break to just be with my family and do the occasional run. I've been running a 7 mile loop around my old school (Dave's school) and last week we (John, Dave, and Nate - Dave's bro) decided to do 2 laps...14 miles. That being farther than anyone but John had ever done...his high is somewhere around 80 miles, so he does not count. But it went really well - it took awhile but was comfortable (even for Dave once he bought the lip balm...huge joke here that will remain under wraps). John even somehow got me to do the last few miles pretty fast (for me) with the mantra..."its gotta hurt, you know".... Well, I may know but I am not ready to accept that one. But all went well. As for blood sugar - I ate 2 snickers bars, a pepsi (reverting to Old School Diabetes care) and 4 clif shots...oh and some of John's super gatorade (imagine a small bottle filled 3/4 way with gatorade mix and then a dash of water to soften it).

Speaking of Blood Sugar - Today is the day (hopefully) when I can finally refill my test strips again at the pharmacy and can stop living off of others (Heather) and test again. Dave's out, too. Testing often seems to help or be a result of better diabetes care (best control I have ever had in 25 years) - it sure is interesting that insurance companies don't cover the number of strips needed.... its almost like they are only concerned with the bottom line...hmmm. What a great entity to have control over my family's health! comma.

I hope all out there had joyous solstice holidays... I wish peace (and energy gels) to all