Thermogenic Supplements

I’m a big fan of supplementation. Start a conversation about vitamins and shit in any group and I can promise that it will be divided conversation, almost ALWAYS equally divided. For some, they believe there’s no point to supplementation as it just ends up being something you swallow to crap out the other end with no measurable results. The big problem is that one needs to take supplements for a significant period of time before any measurable results can/would be seen. Plus, since all people are different, supplements may not work as well for one as they would work for another. The other half are the ones that at least take a daily multivitamin or supplement in order to help themselves along in whatever they’re trying to accomplish.

For example, you can take supplements for low iron, lack of B-vitamins or if you spend all your time indoors and never get the opportunity to spend time outside, supplementing your Vitamin D can be a good idea. Actually, I wrote a really good post about certain vitamins, minerals and supplements that explain what individual supplements do and how they benefit one’s body. I’ve reposted it several times and for your convenience, you can read that post here. Despite promising myself that I wouldn’t conform to societal norms and make a New Year’s resolution, I would be lying if I said I didn’t have plans to increase my fitness in the coming year and a part of that is a new form of supplementation.

I recently did some research on some called “thermogenics.” Simply put, thermogenic supplements are intended to increase the body’s core temp, specifically in the fatty tissues, which is supposed to cause the body’s metabolism to burn fat through this increased body temperature. Since I’m not a scientist or medical practitioner, I’m sure there’s more to it than that. But it’s an interesting concept and one can’t deny that something that aids in fat burning sounds far more plausible than a supplement that’s supposed to just make you lose weight. After all, one’s fitness must always include one’s own efforts as well.

According to an article posted by HealthLine.com, “the word “thermogenic” literally means heat-producing.” The article covers different types of supplements that have a thermogenic effect on the body but outlines how the effectiveness of this is hotly debated and there’s no significant evidence that it holds any significant effectiveness. One thermogenic supplement they mention is caffeine, which is ironic. If caffeine was effective as a thermogenic supplement, I’d be a skinny bitch by now, considering how much caffeine I suck down in the course of a day. Of course , all of that will need to change since I have decided to find out for myself and have started taking a thermogenic supplement prior to working out.

It’s only been a few days, of course. But if it works, great. If it doesn’t, no harm, no foul. Seeing the effects of any supplement takes a significant amount of time, usually a few months at least. In the meantime, the same rules of life continue to apply. Stay hydrated, monitor blood sugars and check one’s blood pressure regularly. If I begin to notice anything out of the ordinary, I can drop the whole thing without issue. I’ll keep everyone posted, if and when I see any results. ☯️

Have Yourself A Carb-Filled Little Christmas…

One of the biggest problems one can face over the holiday season is properly calculating one’s carbohydrate intake. And this stands to reason, considering one tends to consume homemade meals and baked goods, alcohol and desserts. This can make it a bit more of a guessing game when it comes to determining how much insulin to take and trying to avoid the unfortunate ups and downs that can accompany a miscalculation. And once you’re on that unfortunate roller coaster, it can take quite a while before you can get off…

When you buy something at the store, you get the benefit of the nutrition label on the back of the packaging that tells you how many grams of carbs that are “expected” to be in a piece of whatever you’re eating. I say “expected” and put it in quotations because it’s always a bit of a crapshoot, even when they list it. For example, I have a very nice frozen pastry I buy that’s spinach and feta-filled. But if I bolus for the amount of carbs it says for the amount I eat, I bottom out faster than you can say hypoglycaemia. With homemade foods like stuffing, mashed potatoes, pies and desserts, the guessing game can quickly become a game of Diabetic Russian roulette.

The difference between the holidays and the average meal is that the average meal is, well… one meal. once it’s said and done, even if you fucked with your blood sugar levels a bit, you get to adjust and correct and you’re likely fine over the short term. During the holidays, we’re usually talking several meals over a few days, mixed with alcohol and sugary products that one might not partake of during an “average” meal. So if you don’t bolus enough or have carbs in your system that act faster than your insulin, you may be compelled to correct sooner than you should to bring yourself back to normal, which is followed by the insulin you ACTUALLY bolused for the meal kicking in and causing you to bottom out.

Perhaps you wolf down more jelly beans than you should, because it’s 2 o’clock in the morning and you just want to go back to sleep, which causes you to slingshot too high again. Wash, rinse and repeat… I’m speaking from experience here, folks. Recent experience, in fact. I spent a good portion of the Christmas holiday playing yo-yo with my blood sugars and the result was a level of exhaustion that made it so that it was anything but a holiday for me. of course, I could have stemmed a lot of that by avoiding the beer and homemade desserts I consumed. But what’s the point of modern medicine and wearing an insulin pump if I can’t eat at least SOMEWHAT like a normal person once in a while?

The important thing to remember is to keep yourself hydrated, both because of the potential alcohol and all the food and blood sugar fluctuations. Don’t be afraid to check your blood sugars often but also be mindful that some foods will require some time to catch up and your insulin may require some time, as well. Your endocrinologist can discuss these aspects with you to prevent your repeat visits on the blood sugar roller coaster. The holidays are meant to be enjoyed and you should be able to enjoy them along with anyone else in the family. It may require a few added steps on your part but doing so will ensure that you don’t find yourself in a compromised position during your celebrations. Enjoy! ☯️

A Little Slice Of Spice…

Alright, so it’s no secret that I’m a big fan of spicy foods. It’s one of those things where I was denied spicy foods throughout my entire childhood by virtue of my father’s bad stomach and my brother’s dietary restrictions so I’ve kind of gone off the rails as an adult. At the least of times, I keep bottles of hot sauce and buffalo sauce on tap. At the most of times, I’ll easily sit and eat a dozen jalapeño poppers as an actual meal.

Although not exactly the best thing for your digestion, certain hot spices do have documented benefits for blood flow and cardiac health but I’ll let y’all look up that shit on your own as that isn’t the point of today’s post. During the holidays, it’s natural for people to make certain recipes and enjoy certain foods. With that in mind, I wanted to share a simple buffalo chicken dip recipe I found a few years ago that I make often. I guess I must be craving buffalo today…

I may have shared this recipe before but if I’m being honest, I’m rounding the corner on 2,000 total posts and I can’t remember what I’ve written about and what I haven’t worth a shit, so here it is! The beauty of this recipe is that it’s super fast and simple, requiring only about ten minutes of prep then your slow cooker does all the work. We carry all of these ingredients in our home in general, so whenever I get a craving for something spicy, it’s pretty easy and convenient for me to toss five ingredients into the slow cooker, let it simmer and melt together for an hour and then you’re good to go.

What’s nice is that this is reasonably crab-free, so as long as you ensure you bolus enough insulin for whatever you have with it (bread, nachos, etc), it won’t affect your overall blood sugars very much and can be consumed as an actual meal or as a movie-time snack once the kids are out of your way. My wife even enjoys partaking of this dip and she usually doesn’t do very spicy foods. Provided there’s a slow cooker available, this is an easy way to impress friends and family over the holidays. It would make a great treat to snack on during New Year’s Eve, actually. ☯️

A Little Vacay Never Hurt Anyone…

During my years as a police officer, the general rule was that I could between being off on Christmas or on New Year’s but not both. The thinking was that in order to accommodate everyone having their preferred holiday off from work, staff had to split their time off in order to accommodate our respective community’s policing needs over the holidays. It was a pretty good arrangement, although there were always those who were unhappy with it. Such is life. You can’t please everyone. Much to everyone’s surprise, I usually chose to work on Christmas. My logic behind that was pretty straightforward; things are quieter over Christmas. People hang with family or travel, and complaints fall way down. But on New Year’s is when people get slizzered, go out and do stupid things and attend mass parties. Not my cup of tea. But I digress…

Today marks the first day of a much-needed vacation. Although Christmas is happening over the weekend, I have today off by virtue of being owed a day as Christmas is a statutory holiday. In keeping with how I used to operate when I was an officer, I took the following week off in order to encompass the New Year. It will mean that I get a much-needed break. A break from waking in the wee hours of the morning, dressing and prepping lunches and braving the icy cold of the Canadian Prairies to make my way to the office. I’m a sucker for maintaining my work, so there will still be a laptop at home where I will occasionally be checking on things. But it will be nice to kick back, put my feet up with a hot coffee and let my mind cool.

Modern society has led us to believe that we’re meant to work on a near-constant basis with a few weeks off a year as recompense. Realistically, it should be the other way around. There’s a growing trend in some countries of incorporating shorter work weeks, company exercise sessions and even nap pods in the office. There are plenty of tools available nowadays that make sense so that taking a vacation isn’t your only way to stem fatigue and burnout and keep the cheese from sliding off one’s cracker. Either way, there’s a lot of rest and relaxation planned for the coming week. And maybe just a hint of binge-watching shows… ☯️

Taking Some Time…

I was never much of one to be out until all hours of the night, when I was younger. While most of my counterparts were out at parties, drinking booze and getting into trouble, I was usually in the dojo, studying at home or watching movies and spending time with my dad. Even once I hit my teenage years and got my own car, my time out was reasonably limited of my own accord, often choosing to bid good evening to my friends and head home rather than stay out for the sake of staying out. This didn’t always work out in my favour and may have contributed to my becoming something of a loner or outcast. Que sera…

“I didn’t disappear, I traded;
Nights out for knowledge seeking.
Parties for intimate gatherings.
Chasing money for chasing purpose.
Meaningless work for my passion.
Being busy for protecting time.
Soul extortion for soul searching.
Living for others for living my life.”

– Lewis Howes

I found the quote above some weeks ago and it kind of stuck with. I look back on my time as a youth and I recognize that I wasn’t popular, wasn’t part of any sports teams or major groups and I’m reasonably sure that almost no one that I graduated from school remembers me or gives two shits about where I ended up. But I have no regrets about how I’ve spent my youth. I made some god friends, the best a man could ask for. And ironically, I still have contact with all of them, almost thirty years later. That says something. It tells me I made some good choices that led me to the here and now and I did it while involving people who made a positive impact.

This is what’s important to remember; how you chose to live your life will ultimately impact the person you become. Does that mean that hitting the clubs and being popular automatically make you an asshole? I wouldn’t make THAT generalization but I can confirm that I was never bullied or beaten up by any of the academics in my school. This also says something. The message to any of my young readers, assuming I HAVE young readers, is no matter what you may be dealing with or facing in your life, it’s up to you to forge the path that will lead you to where you need to be. So make sure it’s a positive path. Although some things may gratify you in the moment, the long term is what you should be looking at. Food for thought…☯️

Tired, Or Burnt Out?

It’s not unusual for someone to get tired and feel exhausted after a long day of being at the office, dealing with one’s children or managing a household. Add cold weather that forces the body to work harder internally in order to stay warm and you’re looking at a perfect recipe for developing a strong case of “I don’t give a fuck-ness…” But one problem, and it’s a big one, is that people tend to use the term “burnout” interchangeably with being tired. And the two are typically quite different. Let’s dive in…

Being tired and experiencing burnout are similar in that they can both cause feelings of mental and physical exhaustion. But the big difference comes from the fact that if you’re tired, sleep, different forms of rest or meditation as well as distractions or diversions will help relieve your tiredness and it will usually pass. If you’re experiencing burnout, your fatigue likely won’t go away regardless of how many hours’ sleep you get. And that’s where the problem comes in.

Burnout usually happened because you’ve been dealing with high levels of stress, emotional difficulties or trauma for prolonged periods of time. Although most people would associate this with the workplace, it can occur in ways that don’t directly relate to work. Some signs of potential burnout can include anything from heavy drinking and moodiness, all the way up to lack of motivation, inability to make important decisions all the way up to suicidal thoughts. Just a touch more significant than just being tired, wouldn’t you agree?

According to an article posted on WebMD, burnout doesn’t happen immediately. It’s a gradual process that builds with stressors from your job. Signs and symptoms can be subtle at first. The article echoes a lot of what I wrote above so y’all can go have a read for yourselves but it does include that some important ways to dealing with burnout include getting an appropriate amount of sleep, engaging in relaxing activities and exercising. In fact, getting even just 30 minutes of exercise a day can help relieve stress and help you to sleep better, which helps the overall burnout.

It’s also important to talk about it. If you’re feeling overwhelmed as a result of your work, talking with trusted coworkers, friends and family can be important. Even discussing your workload with your boss can be important, although most people have a fear of doing so because they feel it will make them appear unwilling to work. Speaking strictly for myself, I prefer to have staff who are willing to discuss their workload in an effort to do a good job than someone who just keeps their mouth shut and ends up quitting once they’re burnt out. But self-care is ultimately important. If you feel your fatigue is more than that, you also have the option of discussing it with your medical practitioner. They may have the means of assessing what is actually causing you or tiredness, burnout or not. ☯️

Look Before You Leap

I had something kind of entertaining happen to me at work, last week. This story is precluded by my poor decision to consume a batch of store-bought jalapeño poppers, the night before. I grew up in a household where everyone had health and stomach problems, so my mother’s idea of seasoning never went beyond salt and pepper. As a result, my adulthood allowed me to indulge in the wonders of buffalo sauce, spicy seasonings and a plethora of flavours that I never would have experienced in an Acadian household, where their idea of cooking for an entire family is to basically boil everything in a single pot until it turns to mush. But I digress…

Although I enjoy tasting spicy foods (buffalo sauce is my favourite and goes on manny things), a lifetime of bland food developed a digestive system that doesn’t quite like to be challenged on such a brazen scale. As a result and even if I know better, I’ll sometimes indulge in ways that my system won’t quite like and will choose to voice its displeasure by causing anything and everything to come out in liquid form. You can be grossed out by that all you want! It happens to all of us, so don’t pretend to be high and mighty. If this is TMI for you, so be it. Moving on.

As I said in the opening paragraph, I had passed the previous evening by enjoying a handful of store-bought jalapeño poppers. Although delicious and hot at the time, it wouldn’t be until the following morning when I had digested them and made my way to work that the problem would present itself. Setting aside for a moment, the fact that snacking before bed is a bad idea, eating spicy foods right before bed is even worse. I hadn’t been to the office for more than an hour before the tell-tale gurgle in my abdomen told me that I had better make my way to a washroom, which I did. I won’t go into details about the specific lavatory trip besides saying that I made my way back to my office and spent the morning consuming plenty of water to prevent dehydration.

At one point during the lunch hour, I ran to the bathroom with my forehead bathed in sweat and my stomach threatening me in a way I had no way to stop. Luckily, our bathroom has a deadbolt and I can assume a bit of privacy when such events are taking place. However, it wasn’t until I was in the washroom, had experienced a Hiroshima-level explosion out my backside and allowed my pulse and heart rate to relax, did I look down and get a different kind of bad feeling in my stomach. Lo and behold, I was caught in every person’s worst nightmare at the office: there was no fucking toilet paper.

Now, such situations usually only take place in a sitcom or comedy movie. And in almost all of those instances, there’s the possibility of having someone walk in, on whom you can request some assistance. Even if I weren’t too proud to make such a request of other staff in my office, I faced the issue that I had dead-bolted the bathroom door upon my entry and there would be no way for anyone to open the door to come to my rescue. I began running through my options. The sink area obviously had some hand towels, but those couldn’t be flushed. I had no other options within the bathroom, which meant my only options would be outside the bathroom.

Given the nature of these bathroom trips, it wasn’t a situation where I could just lift my pants and carry on to go grab a spare roll and come back. Pulling up my pants before making some cleaning efforts would be unwise as it relates to getting through the rest of my day comfortably and without drawing too much attention to myself. I found myself with two options: pull up my pants and head home to finish out my day or do something naughty that one would typically see in a comedy movie. I chose the latter. What other choice did I have?

I lifted my pants just enough so that I wasn’t flashing anyone I encountered in the outer hallway. The, I cautiously opened the washroom door and peaked out. The hallways were clear from both sides. But there would be no warning if someone suddenly came around a corner. I had to dash quickly, grab a spare roll and make my way back without anyone seeing me with my pants undone. Although it shouldn’t be TOO complicated, since the storage area is less than ten feet away from the door. It was time to make my move…

I stepped out, ignoring the pit in my stomach at being spotted and called a flasher, and dashed for the cabinet. As soon as I opened the door and grabbed the roll, I realized I had used a hand for both of those actions and my pants had been released. My pants dropped to the floor, although my underwear mercifully stayed up. Unfortunately, the damage had been done. I tripped and nearly fell flat on my face in the middle of a heavily-travelled hallway within the office. I struggled to my feet and yanked open the bathroom door and basically fell inside and deadbolted the door.

I managed to clean myself up and make my way back to my office. I was sweaty and bruised, having exerted more energy getting a spare roll of toilet paper than I had during what I required it for. But it certainly taught me the important lesson that one must look before one leaps. Had I taken a second to check before sitting down, the entire situation could have been avoided. Looking back on it, I can certainly laugh about it now and it taught me something about paying attention to my surroundings. You’re never too old to learn. AND it provides a bit of laugh for all of you on your Tuesday morning! ☯️

The Little Engine That Couldn’t Get It Up…

Let’s talk about sex. If that opening sentence doesn’t get your attention, I’m not sure what would but sex is an integral part of life and the survival of our species as a whole. Without sex, there would be no procreation and therefore no propagation of our species. Setting side the possibility of fertilization through scientific means and/or the fact that some people honestly SHOULDN’T procreate, sex isn’t ALL there is in life but it is an important part of it, and most would agree that Diabetes can throw something of a monkey wrench into one’s plan to make the beast with two backs…

Like all things in the life of someone with Type-1 Diabetes, sex can be a difficult topic because it’s more difficult for us. Depending on blood sugar levels, comfort, etc, it can be difficult getting to go time and even more difficult and awkward trying to explain that to a potential partner. That’s why I thought I would share some advice on what’s worked for me and what I’ve experienced through the years. Although it applies to both genders, I’ll obviously be focusing on the male half of the equation since, well… I’m a dude.

1. Be open and communicative: Let’s be honest; most people dive right into sex without really talking about it. We see all kinds of articles and experts talk about how sexual partners should communicate but it very rarely happens. It DOES happen, just maybe not as often as it potentially should. But in this scenario, it’s important to be honest about one’s Diabetes and explain how it may affect the overall possibility of having sex when one wants to. There’s nothing more awkward than having to explain, “It’s not you, baby! My blood sugar is just low!” Better to communicate that Froom the beginning to avoid that awkwardness, which brings me to the next point…

2. Monitor your blood glucose and balance accordingly: This one can be a little tough, especially if you’re out on a nice date, eating out at a restaurant where carb-counting may be harder than with controlled portions at home. Making sure you test and monitor your blood sugars and eat in reasonable amounts if you suspect the evening may lead to adult-happy-playtime is important. If you eat at a buffet and gorge yourself, you may find yourself unable to perform whether your blood sugars are balance or not but bear in mind that in most cases, high blood sugar will leave your little soldier just as helpless as low blood sugar.

3. Do what works for you: This can be a tough one because it somewhat contradicts point #1. It’s important to do what works for you, especially when Diabetes comes into play. For example, it may be easier for you to “rise to the occasion” if you’re on the bottom and don’t have to contribute large amounts of blood flow to your legs to keep from crushing your partner. Ultimately, an erection involve blood flow to the penis, and blood flow is already something that most Type-1 Diabetics have difficulty with. Of course, that’s why point #1 is so important but it can be tough trying to explain to your partner that you’re not trying to be selfish and only do what YOU like, it may simply be that performing is all that much harder (pun not intended) in certain ways.

4. Be impulsive/Don’t pre-plan: Yet another contradiction but oh, so important. Most of us can likely remember spur-of-the-moment sexual encounters where although you were romantically involved with someone, you didn’t necessarily expect to have sex and then BAM! Y’all hit funky town! It can be hard to find a balance between ensuring you’ve prepared from a blood sugar and dietary standpoint but still manage to keep things fresh and impulsive. Eventually, certain aspects of life get in the way. Having children in the home and trying to deal with Diabetes may cause significant periods of time to elapse between sexual encounters. And as much as that sucks, there’s also nothing wrong with that. Many couple try to pre-plan their sexual encounters or have specific “date nights,” but this will often lead to undue expectations and pressure, which can make it difficult to perform.

5. Don’t be so hard on yourself (pun intended): There’s this unwritten expectation that having sex is supposed to be some earth-shattering experience that will utterly and completely rock your world. That expectation can lead to significant disappointment, much like daydreaming about that cupcake all day at work, only to finally eat it and having it be no better than a market muffin with canned frosting. Allow yourself to take it easy and be easy. If sex is initiated and you can’t rise to the occasion or blood sugars interfere or if you’re like me, it’s just too fuckin’ hot in the bedroom, it’s not the end of the world. It’s okay for it to not be your night. It’s not a slight against you or your partner and it’s important you both know that.

At the end of the day, sex is an important song and dance that incorporates a fine balance of planning ahead and just letting things happen naturally. It’s important to have a partner who is willing to communicate and understand, especially if there are limitations that may prevent things d from happening. Anyone who isn’t willing to meet you in the middle regarding those limits may not be the person you want in your life and certainly not the one you should want to share yourself intimately with. Demanding is a big no-no, whether you’re on the receiving or the giving end. The whole point behind sex (besides procreation) is intimacy and one can’t achieve that by making demands.

Take all of this with grain of salt. I’m not a doctor or health practitioner, I’m not a sexual therapist or educator. But I have had type-1 Diabetes for over four decades and have encountered everything I’ve written above in some way, shape or form. Those aspects becomes even more prominent as we get older. That’s why it’s so important to take good care of oneself in order to continue enjoying all the more pleasant aspects of life. Food for thought… ☯️

Even The Finest Armour Can Rust…

There’s a consistent truth to life that eventually, we all get older. I never got it or understood it when I was younger. My parents felt old to me when they were almost twenty years younger than I am now. I never understood all the jokes and memes about how waking up in the morning was like the sound of a thousand mouse traps. But I swear that my joints are the reason why mice stay the fuck away from our house in the winter. A little touch of cold and all of a sudden I have to rock back and forth a dozen times to roll myself out of bed. But I digress…

I’ve always prided myself on maintaining my health as best I could. Getting the basic equivalent of a death sentence from my doctors at the tender age of 10-years old woke me up in a way that most adults wouldn’t appreciate, at the time. I started training in the martial arts, taking control of my food and make conscious choices about my health and my future. Having been educated on all the complications Type-1 Diabetes can bring, I refused to become part of the overall statistic. There was no fuckin’ way in hell anyone was going to amputate one of my limbs. losing my eyesight or having a heart attack also didn’t sound too appealing.

I’ve had the benefit of navigating the rough seas of Diabetes with a certain amount of pride. And zeal, I guess. Given my increased level of fitness, proper diet and attention to my condition has allowed me the benefit of reaching my current age with all my limbs and organs intact, a clean nervous system and essentially no complications after over four decades of dealing with Type-1. In my early twenties, I travelled to Japan and subsequently, Okinawa. I soon after passed my first degree black belt. I became a teacher of others. I excelled in every job I ever held. Despite all odds and opposition, I graduated from the RCMP Training Academy in Regina, Saskatchewan and became a Mountie. Despite what some may say and mistakes I’ve made, I have a story to tell…

Despite how hard I’ve worked and how many obstacles I’ve faced, time is beginning to show me that I need to slow down. I don’t move quite as quickly as I did years ago, which was premised by the broken rib I suffered last April from a punch I should have easily blocked. Getting out of bed, even after a full eight hours of sleep, has become more difficult. Getting through the day without increased amounts of caffeine (or a nap, if its the weekend) is becoming more and more difficult. I worry about things like cholesterol and blood pressure now, and have prescribed “preventative” pills for both. Apparently, that’s a good idea if you’re above the age of 30 and have Type-1 Diabetes.

If you would have told me, twenty years ago, that I would have to constantly check and worry about my blood pressure, I would have told you to, as the French would say, go fuck yourself. But believe it or not, here I am! Taking preventative measures for my health and slowing down, as time is wont to do. But slowing down doesn’t mean stopping. As I’ve always said, life brings movement. Movement brings energy. Energy brings life. If there’s one thing I can guarantee, it’s that I’ve never done anything less than 100% and I don’t intend to stop, creaky joints and all… ☯️

Pain Is Subjective…

It’s safe to say that I’ve been through a fair bit throughout the course of my life. Between Diabetes, karate and all the violence I’ve been exposed to during my policing career, I’ve experiencing varying degrees of pain. Some of this ranges from a paper cut, which if we’re being honest, is painful as shit despite how menial it is, to broken bones, contusions, black eyes and needles in my eyes for my edema. I’ve openly bled from injuries and hav even awoken from comas on more than one occasion. But the interesting thing is that pain is subjective.

Last April, I took a solid punch to the rib cage and fractured a rib. It took a couple of months to heal properly, which included pain killers, muscle relaxants and slowly working the area to obtain range and mobility again. I had nights where I was curled in pain despite the meds while the bone healed and the muscle wall mended. Wow, when I read it that way it makes me seem like a little bitch… But I digress… A broken bone and damaged muscles would justify some pain and difficulty getting over it. But a paper cut, for example, one should be able to get over in just a few moments.

That’s why something that happened a few weeks back seemed to elicit more pain than it rightfully should; a fact my wife found hilarious. I need to change the transmitter sensor for my continuous glucose monitor every seven days. Because this is me, it always seems to happen at the worst possible time. Setting up a new sensor requires roughly four to six hours. Although super convenient and helps to maintain my overall health and blood sugars, there’s a lot more involved than just removing the old one and slapping on the new one.

First, I remove the old sensor and place the transmitter in the charger. This happens so that the transmitter can recharge and reset from its previous use. I also take the opportunity to clean the transmitter with some light rubbing alcohol and a swab in order to remove any residual blood or adhesive. While it charges, I have to go through a plethora of settings on the insulin pump so that it won’t start panicking that it can no longer read my blood glucose levels or locate the transmitter. Given that it’s 2022, you would think there’d be some way for that process to be easier, but whatevs.

once the transmitter has had an hour or two to ensure it charges completely, it’s time to inject the new sensor. This is a bit of a delicate process. The sensor is injected using a device that places it in the interstitial space beneath the skin. Assuming I don’t strike a blood vessel, I attach the transmitter to the sensor. As long as the sensor absorbs the interstitial fluid properly, the transmitter will blink and I can tether it to the insulin pump. Then, the sensor requires a two-hour period to warm-up before needing to calibrate by testing one’s blood sugar. This needs to be done twice within four hours, hence about a six-hour period to reinstall.

Either way, I usually install the sensor on my tricep but in recent weeks I’ve been cycling between my tricep and my abdomen. When I install it on my abdomen, I usually run a quick razor over the area to remove any hairs on the ol’ gut. Once the adhesive is in place, the hair will still try to grow back. Turns out on this one occasion, when I pulled off the adhesive, I took a chunk of flesh with it. Tore the follicle as well as the top layers of skin right off. I hurt badly enough that I temporarily saw stars and nearly blacked out. This is the part my wife thinks is funny…

When one considers all the injuries and attacks I’ve been subjected to in my life, it seems a bit hilarious that removing what’s essentially a sticker from my belly would be enough to hurt so damn bad. But there it is. Diabetes, am I right? As with all things in life, there are worse things and I can’t say I’m not happy with how well I’m able to control my blood sugars. But pain is subjective. ☯️