Those of you who know anything about me know how much I love cycling. What I don’t love is cycling maintenance. I have a 1-year old bike now that I haven’t taken in for service yet and it definitely needs adjustments.

Speaking of adjustments and maintenance, as I write this I’m taking pretty good care of myself. I’ve ridden my bike 5 days in a row and I feel great. Nothing real long. Anywhere from 10 -20 miles at a time. Do I want to ride more? Yes, of course. Can I do more? Well, I don’t want to push it. Why?

Because I’m feeling a bit fragile lately.

OK, yes, this is one of those posts where I talk about my health, which I referred to in this fun video.

This particular health issue snuck up on me, and if I had been thinking about MY maintenance, it wouldn’t have hit me as hard as it did the night of April 17, 2024. As I finish my 60th year on this planet, my health worries have now shifted from heart disease (which my Dad had and I was sure I inherited) to something that both of my parents had as their lives were coming to an end. Diabetes.

So, March 11 (My Dad’s birthday), I had a proper doctor’s appointment. The doctor ordered all the tests that someone in my age bracket should have. Dermatology – I have a small chunk of my body missing now from a biopsy that I had taken. Urology – This is where I had a very high number from a urine sample that indicated at least pre-diabetes. Cardiology – That appointment date has yet to arrive. Needless to say, blood work after the Urologist was the major concern and I was told to immediately change my diet and was put on some standard blood sugar medicine, Metformin. I’m not going to go over all the prescriptions that I was or am taking. That’s maybe for another time. What happened next was the scary part. The part where I wish I had a better personal maintenance routine.

On April 16-17 I was the sickest I have been in a long time, if not ever. I leave it there as far as descriptions go.

On the night of the 17th, my ex-wife Michelle was over to the house coming to take my son to dinner. I told her I wasn’t feeling great, and I noticed a rash on my legs and wrists, and my breathing was labored. I asked her to get some Benadryl. When they returned I wasn’t doing better and Michelle insisted that she take me to the closest emergency care center. The folks there agreed that it looked a like an allergic reaction, but then one of the paramedics stormed into my room and said I am having an episode of Diabetic ketoacidosis or DKA. As fast as I came into the center, I was now being transferred to the closest full-on emergency room. Two unpleasant nights in the ICU and I was free to come home. There are so many details, including how fantastic my caretakers were, but I’ll also leave that for another time.

Time for a new journey then. One that I’m determined to include better health maintenance, as well as better bike maintenance. Just a quick aside, when I arrived home from the hospital and after taking a nice nap in my own bed, I of course wanted to take a nice shower as well. This is where home maintenance reared its ugly head. My water heater had gone out. So many lessons in such a short time, and so much to share in the future.

One final epilogue to end this post. One of the first people I thought of, when all of this new information was flooding my brain, was my friend Alan Levine. He’s written many times about his diabetes history and besides his blog posts, shared with me (in a long email) some great information that was extremely helpful. Thank you, Alan.

Photo of me from My Film (which I made a while ago and decided recently to make more public).


7 Responses

  1. Your support and comments mean a TON! I know that riding is lowering my blood sugar, so it’s essential to my health as well as my morale.

  2. I LOATHE entropy ? I guess in all seriousness I should embrace it. Thanks for leaving a comment. This blogging thing might catch on.

  3. Hi Andy … sending you good maintenance vibes and best wishes in this new journey. I started on a somewhat similar path at about the same age. A couple of years ago, when I was 61, I realized that I was on a trajectory toward type 2 diabetes. Was able to make the diet and lifestyle changes to turn that around but … completely out of left field, at that same time, my white blood cell count started spiking and, I was diagnosed with a chronic form of leukemia. Meds have got that under control for now, so things are good. You will get where you need to be. Take care, my friend.

  4. Mo, thanks so much for the comment and I’m constantly amazed at the curve balls of life. I am slowly stabilizing on my new lifestyle and I’m just trying to behave myself. As I said to D’Arcy, I hate being out of control. Plus, remember that my presentation at Reclaim Open had as part of the title “Under Control”. Hoping all of us in this comment section can move forward through life in good health.

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