New Year Resolutions Blah, Blah, Blah …….
2017 just around the corner and everybody does it, a new year, a new start, a new me. Come the end of January most people are half a stone heavier, smoking more and drinking gin like it’s a life blood!
Most people fail at keeping to their ”new selves” because they try and change everything, all at once. What is worse is that usually no preparation goes into these resolutions, they are made up after a few drinks on 31st December. Fail to prepare and you have prepared to fail.
Well this year I’m not making resolutions that won’t last, instead I’m making a promise to myself, I’m going to get the old me back. The me before I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
What Changed With Type 1 Diagnosis
In a word ”everything”. Life was never going to be the same again.
- Food was never going to be just eaten at random, thought had to go into everything that passed my lips.
- I was told I couldn’t drink anymore, that it’s not a good idea for people on insulin to have alcohol.
- My driving licence was at risk if I had too many serious hypos.
- In order to drive I had to check my bloods, be above 5 mmol/l and then check every 2 hours whilst driving.
- Exercise would be very difficult to do, physical activity increases risk of hypos.
Check out my blog post from last year about the old me, the one before diagnosis ➡ Life Before Diabetes
That’s A Lot To Change
Over the past 3 years since diagnosis I have adapted my life. Diabetes is now a part of daily routine, just the same as breathing, walking, talking etc etc all just 2nd nature.
Experience has taught me how to deal with different foods, how I can enjoy alcohol still and how to deal with blood sugar levels and driving. The only missing piece has been exercise. That is the part of the old me I am getting back in 2017.
Excuses, Excuses, Excuses
For too long now I have used my diabetes as an excuse not to exercise. I have heard and read of so many people having bad hypos whenever they try to exercise. This fact alone has made it too easy for me to say ”I can’t go to the gym because of my diabetes” I know that is complete nonsense in reality but it has been an easy excuse to hide behind.
During the past 18 months that we have been doing the T1D London Meetups I have met quite a few people who are very active. They seem to manage to go to the gym, play hockey, go on really long biking events, even run marathons in one case. Each of these people have told me how they deal with exercise and diabetes. In each case it is different, and that has convinced me to do something about my exercise, or lack of, in 2017.
If I don’t try then I’m not going to know how it effects me, or for that matter how I’m going to deal with it. All I do know is my weight has crept up half a stone in the past few months and that when I have had to run for a bus, or do some strenuous activity, I am out of shape!! Things need to change.
Preparation Is Key
As I said before most ”resolutions” are a spur of the moment whim, that’s why some people fail. They make a resolution because they feel they should – not because they want to make a change. I have been wanting to start an exercise plan for ages now. In fact after about a year of having Type 1 I did force myself into the gym. At the time my mindset wasn’t right. I was doing it because I knew I should, because my DSN said I should, not because I wanted too. As such that was always doomed to fail. Sure enough I had a few hypos and gave up, thinking I couldn’t exercise because of my diabetes. I learnt something from that experience though, and that will help me now I’m sure.
Why Is 2017 Right For Me
Now I am on an insulin pump, controlling my insulin dosing is much easier. I can run temporary basals for when I exercise, this should help with the hypos. Starting on an insulin pump would make exercising much more manageable, I knew that. More on this in the upcoming series of blogs.
I have met and spoken with lots of very healthy, active Type 1’s in the past year. Now I’m armed with a much greater knowledge and determination to get back to my gym going ways. Also being part of the DOC (Diabetes Online Community) will be a massive help and motivation. Most people in the gym have no idea at all about Type 1 Diabetes and exercise, this is where it really helps being part of the DOC. Expert knowledge and experience is only a Tweet away.
Check out Team BG, some great advice there if you are planning to start exercising.
Thanks for reading, please keep an eye out for my upcoming series of blogs centred around Type 1 Diabetes and exercise, as well as updates on my personal journey back towards fitness.
Take care and exercise everywhere