Indoor Openers and Protect iT Socks - The Difference Between Winning and Losing.

Those of you who are into your athletics may have noticed that the indoor athletics season has finally begun! After what feels like and probably has been months of preparation and training, the competition season is finally upon us and we’re all ready to put that hard work to the test. The indoor athletics season varies slightly from the outdoor season because aside from the obvious fact it is held in an indoor arena- the track is 200m all the way round opposed to 400m. This means 200m runners such as myself have to run two bends and two straights opposed to the one of each that we do outdoors. Which also means that there is no 100m straight on which to compete, so this distance is shortened to 60m instead- making it a much faster and more intense race, with little room for error, as it’s all over in the blink of an eye or so it feels anyway.

Racing Numbers from the Welsh Championships

I decided to open my indoor athletics season with a grand prix meeting at the indoor athletics centre in my home town. The nature of this event is that it’s open to numerous age groups and athletes from all around the country. But you don’t necessarily need to be affiliated to a club to compete, so it’s also a good way for beginners to test themselves out at an event too. The 60m was the first event on my schedule, although I would be running both events during the same day. Luckily the 60m was on just after lunch time. This is perfect for me because I need to take into account blood sugars and meal times because of my diabetes and so I was able to have a light lunch before warming up and competing. During my warm up I maintained my blood sugars in single figures throughout, with the use of a temporary basal rate on my pump. This is because I find that insulin is utilised more quickly during sport, and with the help of jelly babies to prevent my blood sugars dropping to hypo level my warm-up went well.

My 60m race went well and although there were a couple of hours between my 60m and 200m races, by the time you warm down, eat again and warm back up the time disappears. I chose to have a banana between races to replenish the carbohydrate I’d burnt off whilst racing and to help maintain my blood sugars for the next round of warming up. Again my blood sugars remained in single figures and stepping into the final call area (the waiting room before going on track) my glucose levels were 7.3mmol, perfect! Although I try to keep my pump on during my warm-up, I do take it off to race. Firstly because there’s no where to put it and secondly because I wouldn’t want my hand to get caught in the wire whilst I’m sprinting. Although there were about 20 female athletes racing in the 200m, there are only 4 lanes available to race in on this particular track. In my heats unfortunately two girls pulled out and so it was just myself and one other competitor racing each other and racing to get the fastest times out of all 20 competitors… no pressure then!

Photo Finish

It was a really exciting race as we tore around the bends jostling for first position, I decided to use the decline from the second bend to give me that last boost in the home 50m, managing to propel myself to victory! But as you can see from the image above of us racing at the photo finish, I actually won by my Protect iT socks! In a sprint race every millisecond counts and having a performance sock that allowed me to perform, literally meant the difference between winning and losing. And my time did go on to win the whole grand prix for the 200m. One of the things I really like about Protect iT socks, especially when running indoors is that they stay put- fitting like a glove around your foot. Sprint spikes are designed to fit like a glove themselves, there’s no wiggle room and certainly no room for socks to bunch, if they did the spikes would become really uncomfortable perhaps even effecting your performance. But because of their seam free design, the socks held in place even with the g-force of running around the track’s bends which are built like a cycling velodrome. My feet remained cool throughout my warm-up performance too and as the photo shows, optimum performance is the difference between winning and losing!


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My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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