I’ve suffered from hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) my entire life. I was 6 when I had my first hypoglycemic episode that I can actually remember. I was at the mall with my mother when all of a sudden, I didn’t have the energy to walk any more. My mother knew what was happening and we immediately went to a restaurant for a burger.
I have had many episodes throughout my life. When it happens, I start feeling anxious, then weak and dizzy, then I break out in a sweat and I develop tunnel vision. When I was pregnant, I had gestational diabetes. I was closely monitored by my doctors and had to check my blood sugar level 4 times a day. I was to eat nothing that had more than 3 g of sugar per serving. The hardest part was I only wanted to eat French toast with strawberries and whipped cream. Bad and wrong. Bean tostadas became my staple while I was pregnant as corn tortillas didn’t raise my blood sugar.
During the first few days of The Whole 30, I haven’t had any blood sugar issues. I’ve paid particularly close attention to how I’ve been feeling so that I don’t get too hungry and run into a crisis, because once your blood sugar drops to 70, all bets are off and out comes the sugar.
If you suffer from hypoglycemia and try this program, do eat at regular intervals and don’t let yourself get too hungry. The book suggests eating only 3 times a day (albeit more if you’re really hungry). I have to eat a minimum of 4 times per day, smaller portions, and sometimes I’ll only have a hard-boiled egg just to keep my levels up. However, with all the protein, goodness, and absence of sugar with this program, I haven’t seen nor felt any potential insulin problems. Score one for the diet!
However, with all that being said, I did have an issue in the middle of my long run on Sunday. After 4 miles, I had to make a detour home because there came a point where I couldn’t even hold my shoulders back as I felt so weak. After James and I analyzed my food intake, we came to the conclusion that I didn’t fuel properly to sustain a long run. Spaghetti squash, 2 ounces of chicken, and some olives the night before do not make for a good pre-load dinner, nor did the potato and banana I had for breakfast. I need to eat way more protein with more complex carbs the night before, and truth be told, I need to eat at least some protein before my long run to power me through.
It’s all “trial and error” and “live and learn.” I now have raisins to fuel me in the middle of my long runs (yuck), and I will try again next Sunday for better results. In the meantime, I have an 8-mile run to make up this week during the evening sometime. The important thing is I didn’t reach for the jelly beans and break my program.
Day-by-Day Whole 30 Playback
Day 1: Cravings were really strong. I wanted my tea, my desserts, my oatmeal. By about 2 p.m., I had a minor stomachache. I stretched myself out, and after awhile the pain was gone. Ran 3 miles. Energy level was good.
Day 2: Feeling okay. Cravings are still strong and I’m really missing my oatmeal and peanut butter. Fought hard against that after-lunch bite of chocolate that I was in the habit of having. The craving eventually subsided.
Day 3: Friday and usually the day we have happy hour. Cravings are still there, but are starting to diminish somewhat. Now I’m just missing chocolate and my peanut butter… so much so the craving has switched to the powdered peanut butter I have in the cupboard. Here’s the kicker… I’m allergic to peanuts and peanut butter… I’ve just been able to build my immunity up to where I don’t have a reaction anymore (although I have developed a significant reaction to pistachios, so they’re completely off the list). For happy hour, I went for a run instead and stuck to my water, then finished off the night playing a video game. If you want things to change, then you have to adjust the routine. Energy levels are increasing.
Day 4: OMG, my Saturday morning tea time. Another hard routine to break. I didn’t break the morning routine so much as I just made do with iced tea instead of hot tea. I still spent the entire morning on my computer catching up with everyone. Made a huge pan of roast veggies for lunch which filled me up nicely. Haven’t craved chocolate today, but peanut butter craving is still there. Energy level is good… maybe because sometimes I spike my water with a little iced tea. It’s a scheduled rest day, so only house cleaning on the to-do list.
Day 5: Long-run Sunday. I had issues with weakness, really wanted the sugariest sugar I could find to get through, but settled on a banana. Once I had some scrambled eggs and a nap, I was back to normal. No cravings other than the sugar I wanted on my long run. Was a little bit hungrier than normal to which I’ll attribute to a glucose drop.