Carolyn's Running Thread

I ran a marathon for training on Monday, and I crashed at mile 23 at a moderate training pace. I had enough gu in my system but dropped super fast from 150-80. 80 is fine, I’m happy running at 80. The speed of the drop is what made me scared and feel bad so I walked miles 23 and 24. You can tell when I crossed the finished line and relaxed because my stomach absorbed all the gu in my stomach and spiked to over 200.

This was a training run (4:30/ but would have been more like 4:10 without the 2mi walk), but I’m really hoping for a PR and a BQ (3:30) Dec3 at CIM.

I reduced lantus from 16 to 15 units the night before (still ended up a little too much basal I think). Breakfast 2.5h before was a picky bar + 1gu and 1 unit. 1 more gu 30min before. Race started at 6:30 and i had a gu at miles 5/10/15. I was rising steadily(around 150) so I skipped the mile 20 gu but then I dropped so I ate another at mile 24.

I woke up low-ish (I’m honeymooning/basal needs vary), the first spike is breakfast. The pre-race gu at 6 for the 6:30 start. I think the gradual rise from 75-150 begins at the point my breakfast humalog wore off. The quick drop back to 80 is where I felt awful. I think it was because my stomach decided not to absorb anymore. The the gigantic spike is when it started working again after the finish.

That didn’t happen 2 weeks earlier at the Pikes Peak Marathon (a 7 hour endeavor with 8k ft of climb); that was longer and lower intensity. With some altitude and at least 10 finger pricks. I stayed 80-120 the whole time. Its adding in the extra intensity that shuts down my stomach even if my legs and lungs are fine.

Mostly running just spikes me but the marathon is different. I don’t like to spike either because I tore my calf muscle in March before I was diagnosed and couldn’t start running again until I was diagnosed at the end of May. I’m pretty sure it tore due to a high blood sugar cramp. I feel comfortable if I run for a long time at a very low intensity but this was a slightly harder run and the effort level will be significantly higher to race it. For 5k to 10mi distance races I don’t have cgm data, but I’ll start at 80 and finish at 180 with no/minimal calories. That wouldn’t work for a full… I’m frustrated.


Hi Carolyn,
A few things I noticed here, in no particular order.

That’s a fairly insignificant change for a marathon. When I was doing them with MDI, I cut my Lantus dose in half. With such a small change like 16 to 15, you will need to feed that basal.

I recently posted about this somewhere in another thread, I gotta find that thread, but your body will definitely avert it’s attention to your legs and put your GI on the back-burner. Your absorption of carbs will be significantly slowed down as long as you are up around 70% or more of LTHR. Once you slow down, all those carbs will come flooding in!

Oh yeah, the lower intensity will allow more fat metabolism. Another thread is out there on that. Those runs are easier from a BG standpoint. Although the elevation profile of that race doesn’t seem like it is an easy effort! It is heart rate, not speed that shows how hard you are working!

Have you considered a slower release carb that sticks with you a little longer? I eat 60 grams two hours before, but they are slower carbs (oatmeal).

That’s a beautiful race. That elevation profile is a bit friendlier than Pike’s Peak!

How are you injecting during races? I did many with MDI so I can give you some tips if you need them. I diluted so that I could do micro-doses because I found that 1/2 unit doses were deadly!


Cut in half the night before, then dial the night in with Humalog/ Novolog? Did it make a problem with your sleep since you had to wake up for injecting – or did you ask your wife to deal with that?

I dosed in the morning so it wouldn’t interfere with sleep!


Nice thinking!


Carolyn, you are way beyond me as a runner.

You don’t think this may be due to your still high basal?


Carolyn, this may be because, at higher intensity, you can tune your BG steady (an higher) without dropping at all if you find just the right level of effort? I can sometimes do it running but never swimming.


How NOT to race a triathlon but still have fun…
#1 stay up til midnight, drink half a bottle of wine, and spike to 200 after a very late dinner (I have trouble with the pre-bolus discipline). It didn’t even occur to me to change basal. Sleep on my sensor and wake up to the urgent low beep when I’m actual around 80 at 2am.
#2 wake up an hour later than planned (at 5am when I was supposed to leave instead of 4), a little low at 65, whatever
#3 toss everything in the car and leave 30min later than planned (I DON’T allow extra time to begin with). Bike still has heavy bombproof wheels and tires and hasn’t been ridden for more than a year…
#4 Eat 40g carbs (gu chews) while speeding the 75min drive to the race
#5 Arrive 5min before they close the transition area. Rack my bike and inject 2u corrective since by then I’m >260. Grab goggles and shiver (I didn’t have time to find my wetsuit) for 30min until my wave starts
#6 Having to dig through my bag for my bike shoes/ running shoes/ helmet/ etc that I didn’t have time to unpack made for glacially slow transitions :stuck_out_tongue:

I dropped to 100 by the end of the bike (I was cold, didn’t have water bottle, am not currently motivated to bike hard, basically quite biking entirely 7 years ago) then spiked to 180 by the end of the run since I like running and ran harder than I biked. Still squeaked in for 3rd in my age group since I passed 2 in my age group in the last half mile. 21/199 women… then my sensor quit for a bit and I changed it with some whisky when I got home (lake water, ewww… 15th day, that was the plan).

Blood sugar was pretty much dumb luck not awful during the race… started high, but the lower intensity of the bike helped it drop down. 180 is definitely higher than I’d like it to be with the 5k run spike, but I haven’t made any diluted insulin yet so there wasn’t really anything I could do about it.

A little reckless, lots of fun, and the post race pancakes were delicious! I’ve probably done 60-70 tri’s just not many in the last 10 years after I burnt myself out, so I know how to do the tri part just not the blood sugar part.


Congrats on your age group placement!

That midnight bedtime and wine drinking the night before a race must be a new training regimen I am not familiar with!

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@CarolynA what a wonderful story to tell! It sounds like you had some great fun – and we had a lot of fun reading it, my son loved it! You are very funny :slight_smile:


That’s amazing! Is this your first tri since you were diagnosed?

Royally screwed up on my long run this am… overslept so no breakfast, started at 100. Fueled as normal since I knew my reserves were low… up to 180 fast so 1u. Continued to climb above 200 45min later so 1/2 more unit. Down to 65 then back up to 180 then stabilized around 100 at the very end. I know how to do up to 3h if I wake up early and eat breakfast 1.5-2h before the run. I know not ideal, but what do I do for a run long enough to require food as soon as I wake up?

Also got distracted by the views and scraped my knees up… I do that about 2x per year.IMG_0032


Sorry about that injury! That looks bad.:frowning_face:

BTW, whenever you get a bloody injury, you might as well take advantage of it and do a quick BG test… :wink:


Tripped over my own feet on the trail looking at the reservoir/fall colors/mountain. Hurt when I did it and when I cleaned it out. Otherwise its fine. That pic was probably a mile after it happened and we still had another 7 to go- there was quite a bit more blood by the end. The dog’s been licking it off my shoe. Left knee is oozing a lot (I tape pieces of gauze around the bottom of the duoderm where it leaks out).

Hopefully it not too terribly stiff in the morning and it stops oozing by Monday so I can go to swim practice. I keep a good road rash kit in my car and at home…


I was doing a quick reading an thought you said duodenum, and immediately thought the injury was worse than you were letting on. Then I reread it. Too funny.


@CarolynA, how did you adjust your basal before running?

I didn’t. Just 14u Lantus at 10pm. 14 is my usual dose but if I take a couple days off in a row I’m up to 15 or 16.


You made up really nicely for your oversleep in the end! Sorry about the scrapes :frowning_woman:

@EricH is often tinkering with his basil dose in the same manner, and he used to take Lantus for years as a runner. His Endo was constantly trying to talk him out of making these micro changes, because she said that it took 3 to 4 days for the insulin amount to stabilize and be noticeable. He didn’t always agree with her. I’m wondering if you changing your basal upwards on days when you don’t exercise is something that works for you. Do you see improvement in your numbers quickly?


Somehow I only post my running bg’s when they are not good… unlike Frozen Otter where they were great the whole 16 hours and I barely mentioned them.

Today I ran a half marathon and just plain didn’t set myself up for successful bg management. I was running it as a training run so just steady 8:50-ish pace… Kinda forgot I have to deal with blood sugar now and snapped into my old pre-race fueling routing that I used before t1. [over]Bolused for 50 carbs tailwind at 8:30 or so and sipped it until about 9:30. By then I just knew I was going to crash 3 miles in and sure enough that’s what happened. My new routine still involves the same bolus and 50g carbs but mixed with some protein and fat so they act slow enough that I don’t spike to 200 then crash to 50 when the carbs wear off/insulin hits its peak activity at the same time. Also, since I wasn’t planning to run race pace, I didn’t get the adrenaline spike that I usually do. Basically just plain got on autopilot and there was no chance of good numbers at all.

Note that my pace was the same the entire time just steady 8:50’s… I felt best right after 11am when I hovered around 65 for a while instead of the 50’s. I feel best running 75-120 but not while things are changing fast. If dex (well my garmin that picks up nightscout from my phone in my belt) ever read 40’s I would have walked some and ate faster but it bottomed out at 52 so I just kept running. I doubt I’d have been able to put out a true quality race effort with numbers like that, but not an excuse to skip the run entirely. Had a dixie cup of beer at mile 11 and it was delicious.

I consumed an additional 80 grams of carbs (gu chews) between when my bg was down to 110 (to try to land the drop). I’d say I didn’t quite nail it because I ended up around 60 instead of 75 or so. With the double down arrow, I probably should have started eating when dex said 120. Normally that’s more calories than I’d be able to handle for a half but I was running fairly easy and it was cold (20’s and very very windy. I was wearing shorts because it was supposed to be 40’s but a cold front came in and the weather-people are worthless here. Where the graph ends, I started to trend up so I bolused right after taking the screen shot and drank a recovery decaf latte followed by a full meal (100 carbs) when I got home. I kept the post-run spike to under 140 following @Eric’s advice.

Race started at 10 and finished around noon… while it was happening, none of it was a surprise, I knew what I was in for well before the start and the running itself felt better than you’d assume by looking at the graph.