Training for the Roman Rumble

By | 30 April, 2013
The Pentland Hills - providing muddy bogs for the unwary mountain biker since 1983

The Pentland Hills – providing muddy bogs for the unwary mountain biker since 1983

In amongst the tremendous announcement of your soaraway Shoot Up’s first baby, life has been moving along in an orderly fashion. I’ve been busy training for the Roman Rumble – the long-distance bike ride I’m doing in June. So how’s it been going?

My first two training runs didn’t go too well I’m afraid to report. The first consisted of a longish off-road route around the Pentland Hills on my mountain bike (a Specialized Hard Rock for the bike geeks). However, it was brought to an abrupt end about 11 miles in after I went too enthusiastically down a very steep hill, hit a drainage cover at 25 miles an hour and punctured my back tyre. Thankfully Katie came out in the car to rescue me.

One inner tube later and I was out again the next day, again picking my way through the Pentland Hills. It still isn’t very dry out there and as part of my contribution to footpath erosion, I chose an extremely muddy route. Needless to say I fell off in spectacular style at least half a dozen times; a process which climaxed with me landing in possibly the Pentlands’ largest and smelliest muddy bog. They say mud is good for the complexion, but I can assure you this is not the case. Especially when said mud is 90% sheep poo.

The mountain bike then had to go into bike-hospital for a few days (don’t worry, bike geeks, it’s fine now), so training continued on the road bike (a Genesis for the bike geeks). This was considerably less muddy and much, much faster – my road bike seeming to weight about a tenth of the mountain bike.

It’s not all about the bike

So how’s the diabetes been coping with all this unaccustomed training? Thankfully, the pump – in its SPI Belt – has been helping considerably. I drop down to about a 20% temp basal before, during and after a ride and put in about a quarter of my usual bolus for breakfast. En route I tend to consume one of those energy pouch things. I’ve been working my way round different brands and most of them are fairly vile – but research continues. If I find any that are at least vaguely palatable I’ll let you know.

I’ve found that if I do two days training in a row I have to change my basal to my alternate pattern. This is exactly the same as my usual pattern but puts in 0.2u less an hour all through the day. This equates to about a daily total of 20u basal instead of 25u. I seem to need that for about three days post-training, then my basal needs revert to normal.

As always with pesky diabetes, my sensitivity post-exercise seems to vary, so I’m continuing to adjust and experiment. But as usually I do feel better and less “diabeticy” after a good bike ride. So it can’t be all bad, eh?

Spare us a tenner?

Avid readers will recall that I’m doing this ride for the Pendsey Trust. They’re a small charity with virtually no overheads who help type ones in developing countries. A measly £2 buys a double-walled clay pot which keeps insulin cool – without a fridge or electricity – even in the Indian summer; so any donation goes a really long way. If you have a spare tenner then please do fling it to Pendsey at our donation page – thanks very much!

2 thoughts on “Training for the Roman Rumble

    1. Alison

      Madness, it’s madness I tell you. Donation duly made, best of luck.


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