Working Out with Diabetes – 10 Step Guide to Getting Started

A workout program can be daunting in beginning to start with even if you are adamant and want to do it.   Especially if you have a form of diabetes.  Most people complain that a workout program is difficult for them to initiate and follow as it makes their blood sugar levels hit low.

. Knowledge is the absolute key. When one learns how his body reacts to different training regimes that how blood sugar levels fluctuate subject to intensity, one can take the steering wheel from diabetes and make it to the finish line.

10 steps to working out with diabetes

  1. Set a goal – One needs to be realistic about his potentials and targets. A lot of learning happens in the beginning as you learn your body limitations and to what extent you can push it towards your goals. Expecting dramatic results overnights is absurd.
  2. Start a written journal – A written record of the changes you will experience will be very beneficial as one can go back and through to determine how his body is reacting to the transformation and development.
  3. Use your journal to track workouts, blood sugars, insulin, diet. –  Identifying trends is essential. One is determined to subject to low blood sugar levels after an early morning workout. This will give you exact information as to when should food intake be done.
  4. Stick with the same routine and diet for the first 3-4 weeks – The fewer variables there are, the easier it will be to see trends.
  5. Analyze your journal entries – Your journal will have all the essential information as to how your body is reacting towards different exercise and intensity. What pattern does your blood sugar follow and how it reacts to variations in exercise? How much cardio and strength training should you be performing and what should be your pre and post-workout eating routines followed by your insulin intake. 
  6. Consider changing your insulin levels – Your insulin will be subject to high sensitivity as you incorporate working out in your daily routine. Adjusting your insulin intake will be necessary if your blood sugar is consistently high or low throughout the day. Sharing your findings from your journal to an endocrinologist be recommended and discuss if a variation is required.
  7. Never starve yourself to lose weight! – A body requires food for energy and cutting is disastrous and unhealthy. For a diabetic person under eating is highly unsuitable and leads to a collapse. Try to make sure your healthy meal plan includes foods you enjoy, and that don’t interfere with your diabetes.
  8. Prioritize lifting weights – Weight training leading to muscle hypertrophy is tremendously important in controlling body weight and diabetics. With higher muscle mass, one achieves higher metabolism meaning better body weight control and optimal insulin sensitivity.
  9. Find support – With social media enforcing our life in various aspects, you can find various online groups on mediums such as Facebook, where other diabetics share their stories. Such interactions generate motivation and a sense of security for the hard work put in. Says Matt Schmidt of Diabetes 365 “look to a dedicated Facebook group such as Diabetes Strong.  They have an incredibly supportive and helpful community to help you stay on track.”
  10. Consider hiring a trainer – Hiring a personal trainer and a nutritionist can help you achieve your goals as their advice and strategies can bring the best of your efforts. Working out and following a strict diet plan are two sides of a coin.

Establishing a healthy life style with diabetes will not happen over night.  This will take months to establish.  Everyone’s body is different, so please remember to find a program that works best for you.  Now go and make every sweat count. 

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