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Exercise

I would like to stress that exercise is important for everyone and not just for diabetics.

“Diabetics who are receiving insulin and who wish to take up exercise should be encouraged to do so because the training will reduce their insulin requirements, improve the quality of their diabetic control and probably reduce their risk of developing the long-term complications of diabetes, many of which are serious. Regular exercise also encourages diabetics to take charge of their disease and will provide the same (if not greater) psychological benefits that are enjoyed by all athletes. With care, selected diabetics can do virtually any exercise, including running ultra-marathons or completing the Ironman triathlon.” Lore of Running by Prof. Tim Noakes

I have found exercise incredibly helpful for managing my diabetes. It has allowed me to reduce my basal insulin(long-acting insulin) by half because the amount of exercise I am doing makes my body more sensitive to the insulin. As Prof. Noakes mentions in the article above it also allows me to take charge of my diabetes, to watch it carefully and to manage it well. It also acts as a stress reliever and I get to be outdoors and see some incredible scenery(I will be putting up some photos of where I train). We live in a beautiful world, why wouldn’t we want to be out there and see it?

There are a few things to keep in mind when exercising with diabetes:

  • Consult your doctor first.
  • Exercise burns glucose. So make sure you have a reliable blood glucose meter with you so you can monitor your blood glucose levels, your levels can be all over the place.
  • Depending on your exercise eat a small snack like peanut butter on 2 slices of low G.I bread before exercising, this helps to increase your blood glucose levels because depending on the intensity of the exercise your sugar levels can drop during the exercise.
  • Make sure you take a quick releasing carbohydrate with you while you exercise. Your glucose levels can drop rapidly. This can be a good energy drink and/or energy bars. When I go riding for over 2 hours I take with me two energy bars and an energy drink(everyone is different so you would have to workout for yourself what works for you).
  • Exercise can make your body more sensitive to insulin. So you might have to slowly reduce our daily insulin requirements. So keep an eye on your levels and adjust accordingly.
  • After exercising you may need to increase you carbohydrate intake as sometimes there can be a steep fall in your blood glucose levels some hours after exercise (I found this out the hard way, I went for a 2 hour mountain bike ride and then a 30 minute run after that, about 3 hours after the exercise I went hypoglycaemic and had to quickly eat some carbs).

These guidelines are not comprehensive and should be used as tips. Everyone is different and so you will have to learn about what works for you as you go along.

 

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Shermaine permalink
    21/11/2011 5:18 pm

    Hey, that’s poerwful. Thanks for the news.

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