Preparing for the Tour of Korea

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After two weeks in Belgium I was ready to get back home and return to my normal routine, which includes taking my long-acting insulin each day. For those of you who missed my last post, you can go back and read about how I forgot this small part of my daily routine before the biggest race of my life.

In my last blog entry I also mentioned that I would be getting ready for the Tour of Mexico; however, plans have changed. The Mexico race did not come through and now I will be racing in the Tour of Korea. This is a 10-day stage race covering most of the country. I am very excited about this, as it’s going to be a big challenge for me with the terrain: Almost every day of the race will have a mountain pass to climb.

The one thing I know I should have nailed down is my diabetes management. I’ve already raced successfully on two occasions in Asia this year, which gives me a great deal of confidence. This will be a huge help in the race.

During my time at home, I took the opportunity to race in a local race with our development (devo) team. The devo team is our “farm team,” comprised of guys under 25 years old who are being groomed for the professional team. The race was a criterium (closed-loop race on a short course) similar to the race I had in Singapore. This race was 50 kilometers (roughly 31 miles) in length with around 50 racers competing.

It was a far cry from the races that were four times the length and had four times the number of competitors in Belgium; however, the race did have all of the fast guys in the Southeast, and they were ready to try to beat Team Type 1. The race was very fast and had a lot of attacking. At the end, the team set up me and one of the devo sprinters, Ty, for the win. Ty won the victory for us!

I was really happy with my blood sugar control for the race. I had started at 220 mg/dl — a little higher than I would have liked, but after one hour and twenty minutes of racing I finished at 134 mg/dl. During the race I had two energy gels with 20 grams of carbs each and one water bottle of a carbohydrate drink mix.

This week I have been training hard to get ready for the Tour of Korea. Most days I have spent 4 to 6 hours riding with a mix of speed and mountain training. It has been a shock to the diabetes system, and I have become more sensitive to insulin this week than I have been in the past few months. I’ve been using my CGM (continuous glucose monitor) for about half of these rides, and it makes a huge difference for me to be able to know exactly where my blood sugar is and when and what to eat. The days without it I usually check every hour and a half to two hours, which ends up resulting in a rollercoaster of blood sugars.

My next blog entry will be coming to you from Korea and about halfway through the 10-day race!

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