Daisy Mae's swimming BG thread

my basals change from time to time. my last basal rating was .25 points higher than what it is now, and then 6 months ago (for about 1 year) i only had 2 basal settings : 12am .55, 6am .475 . it worked like a charm. then i found my needs for basal climbing. if i am not swimming, and i do not bolus, i am a perfect flat line w/ my BGs, so i dont believe that i have too much insulin going on. of course, i am no doctor, but i see that this setting is working well for me.

this i completely understand, as i have tried this before for diff reasons and i take impecable notes to look for trends. [quote=“Eric, post:20, topic:894”]
Wet fingers will give you a false low!

i dry my fingers off before testing and wipe them on a towel. when i test before i leave the gym,i use an alcohol wipe on my testing finger and then wait for it to dry, then i test once more before giving myself a bolus (to keep from the oncoming of a spike.) so, i think i am getting this right.

and just some stats: i am 5’4" and i weigh 105 pounds. before i began swimming, i weighed 98 pounds. i have no fat on me, just muscle.

hope this clarifies some things for you.
daisy mae

i need to add another piece of the puzzle: i am schizophrenic and take anti-pschotics and other meds which elevate my BGs; this plays a large part of why i need so much insulin.

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Just to keep it simple - your BG drops about 100 points when swimming. If you kept everything else the same and you were to cut basal 2 hours before swimming, would it still drop 100 points?

It would drop less. It might not drop at all. You might even climb 100 points during your swim.

You are looking for the perfect formula, where you don’t climb or fall. There is only one way to find it.

It might be 50% basal for two hours before. It might be off for only 1 hour. But I’ll say again, there is only one way to find it. Experiment, adjust, try again.

eric, thanks for this info !!! i have always hydrated well with just water, and still gotten lactic acid build up. perhaps the protein replacement will help post workout.

also, and we have not spoken about this yet, when i began swimming for long sessions, i would cramp up and my BGs would spike post swim, you suggested that i give myself a bolus when i get out of the pool, and this has eliminated the spiking. OMG. yay :smile: but now that my muscles are getting stronger the longer i continue to swim, i am noticing that i no longer cramp up or feel so sore after working out. do you think that this has something to do with my body becoming more and more accustomed to the exercise? that i am not stressing my muscles out as i used to???

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Yes, if you are no longer experiencing soreness, your muscles are getting used to it. You are not strengthening them as much as you were, you are just keeping them fit and toned.

Supposed you do 25 sit-ups one day and you feel sore. Next time you do it, you still feel sore. If you keep doing it, eventually you don’t feel sore. 25 sit-ups is no longer a big deal to your muscles. So then one day you do 50 sit-ups, and you are sore again…

You want to occasionally work your muscles so that you feel that same tired soreness. Not everyday, but occasionally. Since you swim M-F, I would suggest working hard on Friday, and then you have a few days to recover.

Try faster and longer on Friday. Make it a goal to work yourself really hard one day a week.

its funny you should say this b/c this friday i did exactly that. also, i swam for 2 hours straight w/out pause. although i dont usually pause except to drink or do a quick stretch (or if i have to get out and test my BGs) last night after i came home from my swim, i could really feel the searing pain of my workout. i actually had to take some Advil :wink: i took today off to re-coop, and i loaded up with protein and hydration. this was especially nice b/c the weather here in brooklyn is miserable. it is not a typical May Day; it is cold and wet with pouring rain.


If you are really into swimming as exercise, I recommend you check www.swimsmooth.com. Great info. Especially the concept of training at the optimum speed for swimming, check the CSS (Critical Swim Speed) part.
Cheers and congrats on the progress.

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this afternoon something unusual happened during my swim. i did everything the same, as you suggested, except one thing changed, and i have no explanation for it, and figured you might have one for me; my pre-swim BG was 180. i swam for an hour, anticipating a drop of about 80 - 100 points, but that did not happen. after the hour, i only came down to 140, so i went back into the pool and swam for another 1/2 hour. after the 90 minutes of a hard and fast swim, i decided to call it a day (mostly b/c the pool began to get crowded with children) and i re-tested. my BGs after 90 minutes only came down to 130. thats a 50 point drop after a more challenging and longer swim compared to my past experiences. no plummeting.

now i am wondering that maybe my basals are correct(not too high, as you considered previously) but i have no understanding of why this difference took place. am i just becoming more efficient?

after 2 hours off of my pump, i reconnected and gave myself a modest 1 unit bolus. yet, by the time i got home (about 1/2 hour later) my BGs were at 140. i am curious to see if i continue to climb. i swam stronger and faster today than i usually do despite feeling very exhausted when i jumped into the pool. and i surprised myself when i realized that 90 minutes passed so quickly. my mind was not in a restful state as it usually is when i swim; it was not a fulfilling workout :disappointed:

i look fwd to hearing back from you hopefully with tons of ideas and your thoughts on the matter.

Daisy Mae

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Sounds like some really positive results! Can’t wait to hear @Erics response!

thx. i need all the encouragement i can get :blush:


Just to confirm, you did not adjust your basal today?

A few things come to mind. Did you swim yesterday? I think I recall you saying that you swim M-F. So if you did not swim yesterday, it is not surprising that you would not drop as much today. Workouts are somewhat cumulative. The effect that exercise has on your BG can build on the previous day’s exercise. By having a few days off, it would not be surprising that you do not drop as significantly as you would on Friday when you have been swimming for 5 straight days.

The next thing is how hard you worked today.

There is a point where increased workout intensity will start to raise your BG a little bit rather than lower it. Less relaxed than you usually are, and a little bit harder and faster workout - the result is that you can have more liver glycogen released to help fuel the exercise, and more hormones that are activated by the exercise - epinephrine. norepinephrine and cortisol. Those will raise your BG.

Did you eat something immediately after your workout? Keep an eye out for dropping BG tonight when you sleep. And a bigger drop when you swim tomorrow.

its funny that you should mention this, b/c my BGs were on the high side this afternoon from the time i began swimming. first as i already mentioned (my BGs not dropping much during the swim) and then that rise post swim. i ate chicken for dinner tonight, and when i last tested, my BGs rose to 155. i have no explanation for this other than your thoughts about my hormones kicking into gear. i will watch out for the BG low, but it seems to be going in the opposite direction. i’ll keep you posted. thx so much. any other ideas that you may have, please send them my way :sunny:

PS: i did NOT change my basal at all today. everything is as its been.

apologies if this sounds like trolling, but this (complexity) is one of the reasons I switched from the pump to injected basal two weeks after starting with Afrezza. Managing BGs using injected rapid as basal requires a lot of precision, and basically trying to anticipate the human body behavior. Which of course is VERY hard, if not impossible. And then you add exercise to the mix and it gets really complicated.

Once I replaced rapid injected via the pump with Afrezza for food and corrections, my endo actually told me to drop the pump and use injected basal instead. “to have a clear experiment bed, if not you wont know what is due to Afrezza and what to injected”.
And then I realized that all the super complex basals I had with the pump were mostly to compensate for IOB / stacking. Suddenly the good’ol basal worked mostly ok. It took some time to fine tune, yes. But now it mostly works ok. Which is enough. Because if I need to correct I have Afrezza ready.

I cant begin to describe the peace of mind and simplification that Afrezza + injected basal has given to my life and exercising. Especially to swimming. I just try to have my last Afrezza dose + 60min before a swim. Then have 25gch before my swim session of 1 hour. Most times when I am done the BGs are in normal range. If they are a bit high, I puff and problem solved.

I know, YDMV, but I had to mention this here. As if it weren’t for my endo that suggested I dropped the pump, I wouldn’t have realized what I was missing. If you ever can, I invite you to take a break from the pump and give it a try too. You might find it works for you too!

now to your scenario. Yes, there are many things that will influence your stress and insulin resistance. As Eric says, training is cumulative. There are ways to track this: resting heart rate when you wake up -> Any variation of +5% means more stress in your body. Chronic Training Load (CTL): You can track this via SW like traininigpeaks.com. As that number goes up, so does fatigue, and so does insulin resistance.

If you take a rest day after some hard training days, you might notice your resting HR goes down, as your insulin resistance. If you are using novolog for basal, you might need to adjust as appropriate.

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curious about the affreza as well as basal injection (no pump). my basal rates change throughout the day and are all programed into my pump. with a basal injection, how do you manage these changes? also, from so much that i have read about affreza, i hear a lot about lung problems. i still dont know how it works exactly. how do you know how much to inhale and when, etc.

i LOVE my pump and have tried before to take pump “vacations” but it was a disaster for me. i couldnt do the simple calculations. and, speaking of calculations, i cannot fathom how both you and eric can do all the calculations that you do in regard to managing exercise, insulin needs, etc. its beyond me and my simple mind. i just need everything to be as simplistic as possible.

Hey DM,
How did your night go? Did your swim yesterday make your BG drop?

I am able to manage changing basal needs by timing the shots and adjusting them, and using different basal insulins that release with different schedules. But I can understand the appeal of a pump. I sometimes use a pump too.

my basal rates change throughout the day and are all programed into my pump
my experience was that when I switched to Afrezza I mostly eliminated the IOB and stacking issue. And when that happened I realized that IOB/stacking was the reason I needed all those complex basals. So it wasn’t my body that required those custom basals. It was the never ending stacking/ IOB of rapid injected what required custom basals to compensate for all that craziness.
Next time you should try taking a vacation from rapid injected all-up. I know, sounds crazy, but it works awesome for many people, including me. And its a LOT easier.

both you and eric can do all the calculations that you do in regard to managing exercise, insulin needs, etc. its beyond me and my simple mind. i just need everything to be as simplistic as possible.

Exactly! I don’t do ANY calculations at all really. I inject my basal once a day. And then I sugar surf with Afrezza for foods and corrections. No carb counting. No crazy custom basals. That is the BIG win for Afrezza. It simplifies diabetes management a lot. And by a lot I mean in ways I could never imagine in my wildest dreams.

Its a big change, yes. It takes some time, yes. But it doesnt require a math degree like a pump does :-). It takes patience to learn the new model of Afrezza + injected basal. But if you nail it the benefits are huge, mostly for your life quality.
I tried to summarize my experience here: https://diatriguy.tumblr.com/post/138265041068/an-open-thank-you-letter-to-mannkind-and-the

Also, you can check my tweets at @guasaman, I only started tweeting to share my afrezza experience. So its an interesting timeline of my process to learn this new great way of managing my T1D.

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We love your tweets, @Gus! Of course, the forum (@fudiabetes on twitter) follows you!

eric, your predictions/experience were right on the money. my overnight BGs were in the 80s…healthy and safe, but still i dont usually go to bed with a BG under 80, so i was right on the cusp. also, just got back from a medium intensity swim. i was 200 going into the pool, got out to test after 1 hour, and i had gone down to 105. another plummet, just as you told me to be aware of. i was very tired today, but the hour passed rather quickly. i never understand how on some days the time just flies by, and on other days i feel like 5 minutes takes forever. i havent been sleeping well, though, and i am supposing that the lack of a quality nights sleep has a lot to do with how my body is feeling.

i am still totally confused with your success without using a pump. and i am very interested in the Afrezza and how it works, exactly. also, how the hell do you manage basals w/out a pump???

one thing i wanted to mention to you, eric (and all others on this thread) is that i workout the same time every day of the week, give or take 20 minutes. i use to workout later in the day (around 4pm) and the pool was just so crowded. so i changed my entire days schedule around my swim and now workout from 2pm to 4:30pm each day. i do miss, however, not eating a proper lunch, though; but, i dont want to go into the pool without my pump on and too much IOB. the only thing i eat before my swim is the Ucan protein bar w/out any insulin bolus.

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Daisy Mae, you are an example to us all!

Can’t wait to see what happens to your BGs pre-, during and post, over the next few weeks and months.

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