Training Ride – Learning Recovery

Well, as some of you know I’ve a “little” bike ride coming up starting this Saturday. So before all that, thought I would bring up a little training I did today mostly trying to figure out hydration still and recovery levels. I did a 78 mile ride yesterday fully loaded with my bags and camping kit, and also carrying four bottle of my own mix of sports drinks and hydration tablets (each bottle of 750ml tends to pack in 90g carbs, I used to run higher but am needing more hydration currently). BG wise pretty solid in the 6’s (117 ish in US money) and 7’s (135 ish) which is nice and solid with the pump in 30% basal mode but for the final 10 miles where I dropped like a stone to 2.8 (50) mostly due to a sneaky hill…ok not so sneaky but that hard climb seriously dented my levels, needing a pause and some gels. Anyhow, all good so far.

Today was actually a visit to my DSN (CDE in US money) to pick up sensors for my ride. I only took two bags today though to save weight, and also space for the box I was to receive and another bag for my waterproofs just in case. I also decided to cut down on my drinks to only three bottles.

To make the train I had a very early ride out to the station at 6am. I woke with a 6.6 (119) which I was quiet happy with, did my usual ride breakfast of a bowl of muesli and half dosed it as usual. All was fine till about 10 miles in with my levels dropping rapidly down to 3.2 (56) so I hit my drinks early and suspended the pump completely for 20mins (was at usual 30%), and kept on drinking all the way to the station arriving after a rather nice sprint for the final few miles with a 6.4 (115).

Got off the train 45mins later at 3.2 again grr. So hit the drinks…and then hit McDonalds! ok yeah I know but I have a thing for the breakfasts. Half dosed on the breakfast, and an hour later am back up to 5.6 and back on the bike heading for where my DSN currently this day (not in the hospital I usually visit, 15miles away). A very nice explorative ride, have very little experience riding in cities and was nervous, but got to where I needed to be. Still drinking as riding, and find myself in the clinic back down to 3.2 again! So drinking away I am again. Getting rather annoyed about it so turned the pump down to 10% from then on.

While with my DSN, I mentioned the fun I was having with my recovery levels. I kind of wish I hadn’t as it didn’t go down well, and she was almost going to call for an emergency meeting with the consultant (endo in US money) which I hadn’t time for anyhow. She gave me a serious lecture on hypo’s can be dangerous and what I’m doing is blinkin’ nuts and can’t believe I’m crazy enough to do it solo and unsupported. Also a bit about me being rather flippant about lack of fear of hypos…urmm hang on, usually I’m being asked if I fear them? now it’s also a no no to not fear them?! pfft. Anyhow had to promise I would email into the hospital daily while on my ride so they can keep tabs on me.

My quick pick up sensors and escape visit wasn’t in the end that quick. But when out I got the main road to the coast, and then had a nice ride up a coastal cycle path before switching over to ride along a canal. The sun was out, my levels were behaving again. All was good. Saw some fantastic goslings, and ducks playing, and so forth. Wasn’t fond of the canal water, but the ducks seemed to like it.After this was a slog along some main roads, never fun being surrounded by high speed traffic. But when that got left by a small country lane stretching up a very lovely hill I was drinking away at my carb drink when it dawned on me I had 50 odd miles still to go and I had only one bottle left….ahh! I remember that at the bottom of the hill I had seen a sign for a cafe…so off I go down the hill once more. Saw the sign but it was going somewhere I frankly wasn’t going to look for. But right on the corner was an old school grocers. Fruit and veg outside in boxes. Brilliant!

Now with a bunch of banana’s in one of my bags I was sorted again. And back at the top of the hill again I rewarded myself with one of them. I was suffering I felt from hydration again so took a detour into a small village looking for a village store and managed to find one which was great. Stocked up with chocolate bars and my empty bottles refilled I was off again. I downed a bottle while in the village and could really feel the difference when back on the move again.

The snag was, when I start feeling good, and even with blood levels behaving, I can tend to come up with daft ideas. Such as this lovely steed downhill with a steep uphill right after it, and a very nice wide cycle path beside the road….oh and due to the descent all the cars have a speed limit of 50mph…oh they didn’t have one of the signs on the bike track 😀 Flat to the frame, top cog, steaming it down the hill and almost making it to the crest of the following one. Loved it!

Blasted through the following town, and the road traffic was stuck in traffic lights while the bike track was nice and clear, but for one guy with a shovel who I slowed down for…only to get over taken by some woman steaming past me…grr. Ok, that wasn’t happening! So come the next 7 miles of stupid flat out racing with this lady on both road and bike tracks. I must admit it was fun, but by the time we split off I was thinking it probably wasn’t the wisest of ideas if only to try and keep my legs for what’s to come.

And yes, my bloods were back down to 3.4 and I was back to nibbling on a banana and my remaining energy drink. And there in front of my was the big climb. Every corner, you see more, every crest has another one hidden behind it. It was a relentless slog and I was crawling up it. Passed my endless cars…up till I neared the top and they were all lined up…I gently rode past them all and got to the front of the traffic lights and sat with a security van who passed me 20mins before. Had a good drink of both water and carbs, and took off like a complete nut down the hill. Part of me wanted to say reserve my legs for the next hill, but after the long slog up it, no way was I not going to really enjoy caning it down the hill. Another slow climb before home, and another great blast down hill again. Got home with legs feeling pretty good, able to keep a nice solid pace when not on the climbs, and bloods at home being a quiet respectable 6.4 (115). Guess I will see what my recovery tomorrow will be like though…