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July 2024
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The joy of movement…

There was a great article on BBC’s Look East last night, discussing disabled accessibility when it came to sports.

I have found many gyms, pools, tracks, etc, really difficult to navigate as time has passed. The “anti-sugar” lobyists mean I have to carry suitable hypo treatments – lucozade has been off the menu since they started putting aspartame in it. I mean, why are you drinking lucozade if not for the sugar content? It tastes horrible. As my leisure drinking options have decreased, so too have my emergency sugar options.

Although, I have to say I was impressed in Pizza Express yesterday when our espressos arrived with no sugar free sweetners – it has been a long time since that has happened, not that I have…

Back to the point, please!


The food thing is a biggy. Getting plain food, that’s easy to guess at bolus values and absorption patterns is also tricky – what is the obsession with putting mayonaise on everything? It’s fat, pure fat. The stuff that stops carbohydrates being absorbed. Why?

Of course, I need to travel places to get to do the activity. Since the fire at our local gym, they have stopped having water available (actually, that could have been post Covid), but as much as sugar is useful when I’m hypo, water is vital if my blood sugar goes above 9mmol/l and I’m exercising. Along with the ketones I’m burning to generate energy from the exercise, I’m now flushing that with the ones that my body is screaming for as my blood sugar is high.

Showers are not great as a cabled pump user. At home, every shower has a shelf or at least a hook for a bag, so I can keep wearing my pump. Those are non-existant in most facilities.

I use gentle shower washes and shampoos that I know I’m not going to react too. The missing shelf for my pump, means these are often on the floor. Lovely.

I haven’t spoken about parking. My car, for work and play, is an extension of my carrying capacity. If I’m high, it’s carrying spare injection equipment. When I’m low, it has safe, measured, or injectable, means of recovery. Paid car parks are a nightmare. Say I’m doing something for the first time, the chances are, I’m going to be low. A car gives me somewhere safe to treat the hypo. But only if the parking isn’t charged. Tickets are difficult to assess – how long will it be before I can safely drive?

That’s without all the fuss of figuring out how to shower safely and effectively and protect my equipment in the lockers – did you many are now air-conditioned in some places? Think of the precious liquid, a fragile protein being heat or cooled while you’re showing or getting dressed. A warm coke is less tasty, insulin becomes useless. The pump may be carrying a week’s worth.

Then there’s the aftermath. An hour’s exercise has repercussions: a 100 mile cycle ride the impact wasn’t just the next couple of days. Muscle filling can lead to sudden lowering of insulin requirements. Perfect job for a hybrid loop pump, but of course, it shuts off my insulin to protect agaisnt a hypo, which can then lead to a high. I certainly can’t just go do and forget.

I love exercise: I ski, cycle, motorcycle (270 kCal per hour!), walk, play badminton and tennis, I’ve been known to canoe and dance. Me doing any of these is not just packing my trainers and going to a place where it’s happening.

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