Lauren has really been stressing the effect of cumulative carbohydrates to me during our nutritional meetings. For a "normal" athlete running at a cumulative carbohydrate deficit will cause them to feel lethargic or just crappy overall, this will eventually lead to bonking during a workout or not having the energy to perform. For a T1 diabetic a carbohydrate deficit will eventually manifest itself in a low.
For every 2 hours of exercise I'm supposed to have about 500 grams of carbohydrates. Pre-exercise I ingest 60 grams of carbs and during my workouts I have about 90 grams of carbohydrates per hour. From Sunday morning until Tuesday night I had exercised for 10 hours; therefore I should have consumed 2500 grams of carbs over those 3 days. Sunday I had around 700 grams of carbohydrates, about 300 less than I nutritionally needed; Monday I had about 500 grams of carbs and Tuesday I added 600 grams of carbohydrates. All together that led to a 500 to 800 gram carbohydrate deficit.
Several factors led to this:
1 - It's really hard to eat that many grams of carbs! Sure I could go to McDonald's and gobble up a few Big Macs but that wouldn't really be the best option.
2 - I should have consumed at least 1 more during exercise drink on my Sunday ride.
3 - On my Tuesday ride since it was an easy spin and I was running a bit high that morning I didn't drink any of my workout mix.
All of this manifested itself in a low that was really hard to fight through last night. For dinner I had a full cup of pasta mixed with ground beef, eggplant and red sauce - should have been at least 70 grams of carbs. Less than an hour after dinner my blood sugar had dropped to 69 so I had a snickers ice cream bar; an hour after that my blood sugar was still in the 50s! Two glasses of orange juice later I was able to stabilize my blood sugars in the low 100s.
Given all this, I had to skip my morning bike ride today. If I had worked out for an hour and 1/2 the rest of my week would have been ruined, I simply wouldn't have been able to "catch up" on my carbohydrate intake. As is, I'm going to have to eat like a hungry hungry hippo today to make sure I balance out my needed carbs. The hardest part of this is finding carbohydrate rich foods that aren't processed and don't come in powder form. For breakfast I had a glass of OJ and egg whites on toast - only 600 more grams of carbs to go!