Exercise - What works for you?

Exercise is hard for me. Too much, and things go awry. Too little, and things go awry and I feel incredibly lazy and slow.

I try for 1 to 1.5 hours of fast walking per day… 3-4 miles. I get this about 6 days a week, on average. And since I got an iPod shuffle, wow is it more fun.

What works for you? I’m interested in working in some diversity, and interested in seeing what other diabetics do for exercise.

I find I do best with short periods of exercise, so I try to do a 20 minute stint 2-3 times a day whenever I can. I’m lucky to live in the country on a small pond so I like to kayak around the pond, bike a 5 mile loop or take a short walk. I also do some yoga/gentle stretches a few times a week. This works best for me as I can fit it into my schedule more easily, and I don’t tend to go so low when I break it up. I’m also more likely to do at least one thing a day when it is not such a big time commitment.

i’m into running. been running 5km a day, and it takes me 25-30minutes to do so.my cranky old ipod shuffle provides some fun too. i love running to a beat as it gives me such a kick! another thing that totally works is an exercise buddy. my best friend took kickboxing classes with me before i was diagnosed, and i’ve got another good friend who’s up for pilates with me. we’re going to look for a class as soon as she gets back from her holiday in germany. oh and i play some recreational tennis or badminton occasionally. that gives me a huge rush even if i do whack the tennis ball out of the entire court most of the time.

I have some serious orthopedic issues, so what I can do for exercise is NOTHING.

Right now, I seem to have developed another vertebral disc problem–one reason I’m doing so much posting of late, as I can’t drive anywhere without pain.

My first disc problem paralyzed a muscle for several weeks, which fortunately came back to life, but it left me with no reflexes in one leg and a tendency to end up in severe pain for weeks if I twisted the wrong way or put any stress on my lower back. This new episode which started a month ago has my middle toes going numb on and off and leg pain going up and down the leg if I do much of anything. I’m just hoping that this isn’t a rupture like the earlier one was.

My tendons also tear very easily all over my body, which has also limited my ability to exercise.

When I did a lot of treadmill walking because it seemed not to exacerbate my back, I ended up with a repetitive motion injury in my foot.

Disc problems run in the same side of my family that has the diabetes gene. A doctor told me it is possible that there is something a bit wrong genetically with the proteins making up the disc material.

I have still managed to maintain a 30 lb weight loss for 4 years and my A1c is usually mid-5% range. So it IS possible to do okay even if exercise isn’t possible,

One MAJOR POINT that grows out of this, though. I exercised intensely as a younger person, both Gym exercise and doing heavy labor with a lot of lifting. I was very strong and proud of my strength. I also schlepped around a huge toddler–who grew up to be a college football offensive lineman. NO one warned me that all this heavy lifting and exercise might be destroying my body.

My daughter tells me she has a lot of ex-gym rat friends who are now getting knee replacements in their 30s.

So be smart, and when you exercise, DON’T strain your back or joints even if you don’t get symptoms! You really do want your back and joints working well when you are older! Brisk walking (not on a treadmill) works great. My dad did a couple miles every day until he lost his vision in his mid-90s. He lived to be 100 with a bad blood sugar gene!

In the past I tried to do 30-45 minutes of cardio daily. Then I resumed my sedentary ways for a while. Now I’m committed to try and exercise again, and like Libby, I’ve found that I only need 15-20 minutes of cardio to get the positive effect on my b.g. that I’m looking for. I have a gym membership plus a small gym at work. I’ve been going during lunch and doing 20 minutes on the elliptical. I would like to add a second “section” of 20 minutes as well, either treadmill or bicycle or something in the evenings or mornings, but right now I’m trying to focus on consistency as that’s been my issue in the past. I’m a beginner and have a long way to go in terms of fitness.

I’m also adding in some free weights as I think I’m genetically disposed to be fairly muscular and I’m hoping that adding some muscle will help in the quest for weight loss. However, I have noticed on days when I do some weights in the same lunch hour as the elliptical, I’m not getting as good an effect on my b.g. If I were more of a morning person, I think it would be awesome to do some yoga in the morning as well.

Dear Beth
Exercise is hard for everybody! I try to get in 30 minutes on a treadmill every day ,but end up exercising only around 5 times a week. I am 64 years old and a major problem is aching joints. This makes me skip sessions once in a while. But exercise does help reduce your BS.So I plod on.
All the best. You appear to be disciplined as you are able to fit in exercise daily .This is a plus for you.

Dear Jenny
Your A1C readings are non- diabetic numbers (mid 5% range !).If you are a diabetic, what is the regimen you follow to keep your A1C at such a low level ? Are you on medication for Diabetes ?
Best of luck to you

i aim for twice a week cardio at the gym and some swimming(backyard) on the side - anymore would not be fair to my kids - working full time i barely get to see them the way it is.

Once school starts it is almost impossible to get to the gym. Homework is ridiculous already and we are entering 2nd and Kinder.

well i love workout dvds. my first dvd was by jane fonda it was a dream of mine to complete my first workout dvd called endurance strike by tiffany reed. i was very happy and hope to make more coming in 2012 . i want to inspire other diabetics like myself , i have had diabtes for 26yrs and exercise was a huge part of the control