Firstly, thanks to those who responded to last month's call for input for my talk on type 1 diabetes to the med student cohort at Bond University. The clear message I got was that these doctors in training should understand that they do not - and cannot - know what it's like to live with type 1 diabetes and that the very best efforts to manage blood glucose levels can sometimes be entirely thwarted by this irrational condition. I will certainly devise a good way of putting this to them and I hope that if I get them to think differently at all they might reflect on how people cope with other chronic conditions too.
Just a few days ago I read a diabetes blog page - Tending to your Diabetes in Public, by Immune Kamikaze. Immune is actually a HypoActive M2M rider from days gone by and a very accomplished cyclist. He wrote very eloquently about how he felt when he had to take insulin or ingest glucose in public places, such as on a commuter train. It's always enlightening to learn how other people feel about and deal with these things and I was wondering how different type 1's handled such occasions.
For some people exercise is always a group activity and there's little chance of being discreet. And there's the factor of how intrusive your equipment is. I know I used to keep all such functional management entirely hidden. This came to a climax for me long ago when I was travelling and needed to inject. In order to maintain my wall of secrecy I ended up taking my insulin in what was probably the worst toilet in France. This was a turning point.
These days I will happily use my insulin pen while walking down a busy street, without stopping and without troubling myself to look around and see if anyone has noticed. Because I'm not doing anything wrong and I don't care. One of the things I've discovered since this big turnaround is that the less you try and hide something the less interest people take. I've found that if I'm guarded or secretive then heads turn automatically. It seems instinctive that people want to know what you're up to. If you do something right out in the open people just don't seem to see.
I'd be interested to hear if anyone has a story to tell or strong views on this. But now down to business.
Event Date: 31 Mar - 2 Apr 2017
The Murray to Moyne (M2M) is an annual 520 km, 24-hour cycle relay across western Victoria. Riders pedal their socks off from the Murray River all the way down to the mouth of the Moyne at Port Fairy, grabbing just a few hours sleep stretched out on the cement floor of the giant sheep shed at Hamilton. In 2003 a group of heroic type 1's got together to take on this huge challenge and from that team HypoActive soon emerged. HA has been active in the M2M every year since then, having now had hundreds of type 1 cyclists get the experience of a tough endurance event, supported entirely by their peers. New riders sign up every year and we're glad to say we've still got a couple from that original team.
Type 1's riding like the wind
This year the massive job of organising and captaining the HA team is being done by Laura Rostron and Maria Baranj - huge thanks to both. Our team is made up entirely of type 1 riders and type 1 crew, and our reason for taking on this event is to raise funds for Diabetes Camps Victoria and HypoActive. All the money we bring in goes towards getting young type 1's active and confident and putting on the events that get type 1's exercising with the best possible support - other type 1's.
Please show your support for our team - riders and crew - who have made a massive effort to be part of this event. Visit our sponsorship page here and show you care by giving to the team or choosing a crew member or rider to back. Everyone's done massively well so far raising funds for these fantastic causes, but these last few days are vital - please give HypoActive your support in this amazing event.
A huge thank you to Winners (Sports Nutrition), who have come on board with very generous assistance in the form of bars and gels for riders. These are essential fuel for type 1's on bikes and Winners are the best you can get.
Check out their fantastic range of stuff here: Winners. Now don't you wish you were coming along?
Event Date: 30 Apr 2017
This will be HypoActive's third visit to this splendid and centrally located venue. There is a circuit of about 2.5 km and the tracks are bitumen, which makes them comfortable for all sorts of running, walking and cycling. All round it's the perfect spot for type 1's to get together for whatever level of exercise they choose.
Meeting is at 9.30 am (SHARP!) and as always you choose how far and how fast you want to run, walk or ride. Or come along to Kinch Fine Food at around 10.30 to meat the gang for coffee or diabetic food such as cake.
AcT1vate is a weekend event of workshops, talks, forums and plenty of active fun. It's put on and run entirely by people living with type 1 diabetes and is aimed at everyone considering exercise, or more exercise or just wanting to know more and get support. It's definitely designed for those who want to take the first step, but there are always accomplished exercisers there that reap huge benefits too.
Work is going on feverishly to bring you AcT1vate 2017 on the first weekend of December. There is much exciting stuff getting fixed in place. It's going to be the best yet. You don't want to miss it. Check out the HypoActive AcT1vate 2017 page here for more info.
We're all hugely pleased to announce that we have AMSL (who bring us the Dexcom G5, Animas Vibe and OneTouch Verio Flex) and Abbott (who have created the FreeStyle range of meters, including the FreeStyle Libre Flash glucose monitoring system) as sponsors of AcT1vate 2017. These guys are the best.
Check out AMSL Diabetes here.
Check out the Freestyle range here.
Event Date: 9 Apr 2017
This is a great opportunity to get out there in a massive high-profile Melbourne event wearing your HypoActive running gear and showing how type 1's won't be stopped from getting active and healthy. Whether you run fast or take your time, show the world you can do it!
The 2017 Herald Sun/CityLink Run for the Kids has two course options: 14.6 km and 4.8 km. The shorter scenic course is now available to allow those participants who do not feel comfortable running or jogging the longer distance but wish to be involved in the event and raise money for the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal.
IN: Insulin Nation is a digital diabetes news platform that shares the latest information on diabetes research, insulin therapy, and living well with Type 1 diabetes. It comes from the USA, is run largely by the talented and tireless Craig Idlebrook and is one of the very few email subscriptions that I always take the trouble to read. There's a whole range of people write some fabulous and very pertinent stuff.
In the latest communication there's a link to an article on a woman who actually used her insulin pump to escape (not avoid, but escape) from a violent kidnapping in Birmingham, Alabama. How on earth did she do it? It's amazing. Check it out.
Seriously though, the woman involved has been badly traumatised by what happened and if you read the article you'll find a link to a GoFundMe page that's been set up to help her repair her life. Another great moment to be generous.
That's all for now.
All the best,