3 days in the saddle, 229 miles, all for JDRF

What? London to Paris cycling challenge How far? 229 miles (368km) How long is that going to take? 3 days. Starting from where? Twickenham (southwest London). Ending up where? Trocadero Gardens, opposite the Eiffel Tower Why??? Raising money for JDRF UK to support type 1 diabetes research!!

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Why I am a big fan of VO2 Max testing

Once upon a time in autumn 2007, I went to the gym 4 times a week. I ran on the treadmill each time and did a bit of free weights on 2 of the days each week. I would get my bg up to about 12 mmol/L before I got on the treadmill by having some Haribo. Then I would run until I hit 4-5 mmol/L, usually 40-50 minutes. I would then stop and stretch and call it a day.

I got very frustrated by having to give myself a high blood sugar on purpose and then running it down until just shy of hypo. I felt guilty about having to send my blood sugar high on purpose (not good for the blood vessels in my eyes and my kidneys) just to try to do something that was supposed to be good for me. Then, after 12 weeks, I had lost only 1lb!!

In early spring 2008 I got an unexpected bonus at work. I had seen posters around my gym saying "VO2 Max Testing. Results guaranteed in 12 weeks." I was sceptical. I had just put in 12 weeks of intense exercise and got precisely nowhere. I asked one of the trainers about the terms and conditions of the offer. She said, "If you turn up and do the exercises on the programme and you don't get closer to your goals, you get the money back." I was already in the habit of going to the gym so I was confident that I would show up enough. If the programme didn't work, I would lose nothing. So I went for it.

After 3 weeks of training according to the programme based on my VO2 Max test, I could tell a difference in how my clothes fit. By 6 weeks I lost 4 lbs. By 9 weeks I was getting compliments from female friends when we met up. By 12 weeks I had lost 10 lbs. Best of all, my blood sugars were practically flat every time I worked out! (I used my DexCom to verify what my glucose levels were doing during exercise).

Since then I have been convinced that all people with type 1 should learn about the relationship between exercise intensity and heart rate, and the relationship in turn of heart rate and glucose utilisation during exercise. 

What a difference heart rate training makes!
Spring 2008: "then"
Spring 2012: "now" (with Pat Leahy of ProVO2, Fulham)

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Final tally: £1600!

Dear all

I'm very pleased to announce that my bike ride has raised a grand total of £1600 for the Anjool Malde Memorial Trust!

Thank you for your support.


Thursday, 22 September 2011

£1370 raised so far - help me get to £2000!

To support the Anjool Malde Memorial Trust via Paypal -

Every little bit helps - no amount is too small to make a difference.
  • Online or counter bank transfer - S/C: 16-25-24, A/C:  10238984. (Ref: Melissa)   [Would you please let me know if you donate via bank transfer?]
After 10 hours and 100 miles on my bike!

The proof (DST 100.01 mi)

CGM trace (mg/dL) for the majority of the ride. No complaints!

    Tuesday, 13 September 2011

    £720 raised for JDRF UK!

    Hi everyone - thanks so much for your support for JDRF UK, which came in at £720. I'm happy with that for the JDRF, but I'd like to do at least double that for the Anjool Malde Memorial Trust. I'll continue fundraising for the AMMT through the month of September.

    Sunday, 14 August 2011

    The Anjool Malde Memorial Trust

    My friend Anjool died two years ago, two days before his 25th birthday. He achieved a lot by then, and everyone who knew him expected him to go on to even greater things. The Anjool Malde Memorial Trust supports young people who exhibit aspects of his character and talent so they can fulfil their potential. Jools would say I'm crazy to bike 100 miles for the Trust on my first wedding anniversary, but I am sure he would be proud of the people who are benefiting from its work.

    In 2011, the Trust named Kiran Hungin, who performs as Mary at Midnight, its Musical Talent of the YearBy complete coincidence, Miss Hungin also works in my office building in London. It’s deeply gratifying to see first-hand how the Trust is making a difference!

    The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

    I’ve had type 1 diabetes for over 18 years so the work of the JDRF means a lot to me. My insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor can’t manage my diabetes for me, but they make it a lot easier to live with. The JDRF’s Artificial Pancreas Project is bringing together the best academic and industry research teams to develop the “holy grail” of a true artificial pancreas.

    A few years ago I read a blog by a pancreas transplant recipient about the first meal she ate without thinking of the carbohydrates, her blood glucose level or how much insulin to take. I certainly get by with my carbohydrate counting, correction factors and carb:insulin ratios but I got really emotional when I read that blog. Someday I’ll write a blog like that, thanks to your support for the Artificial Pancreas Project.