Exercising "big muscles" (thighs)

Let me tell you what I recently learned about exercising those “big” muscles in the thighs and gluts, how blood glucose is affected: The way that I now understand what I’ve read about doing “squats” (after actually doing squats), in exercises that target the gluts and thighs, these exercises assist the sugar (glucose) to go into the cells! A1c is reduced! From Oct - Dec, I increased my exercise classes so that I’d be in some kind of exercise class every day. One such class targeted those big muscles – the gluts and thighs. The Arthritis Foundation exercise class that I went to, only targeted the joints and movements for flexibility. I learned (via peer-reviewed articles), that the more those “big” muscles are used, the better are our chances for glucose to be reduced – the sugar goes into the cells better, is my understanding, when those big muscle groups are made to work; so, squats, combined with those other exercises for the gluts, makes the difference. Even if a person cannot do squats, there’s always the Pushups (seated on the equipment, you move the weights with your feet by pushing the weight, burning calories, and making us more insulin sensitive – whatever the amount of weight you can move). By using the thigh muscles in this way, to move the weight (Leg Press), we also use the gluts.

Hopefully, something that I’ve said may be of value to you. Presently, I’m limited/restricted from squats b/c of arthritic knees that leave me no choice – bummer! Not looking forward to knee replacement surgery, either.

You are so right about exercise. I like to do squats, 2-3 times a week. The compound exercises use so much more of your body it is amazing. The squat is called the “King of Exercises.” I see lots of people doing bicep curls in my gym, and I realize that I owe a lot of my success in the gym to the squat.

Thanks for the info. I find that just walking (using the legs, hips, butt the way they were designed to move) has a positive impact on my insulin resistance. I have knee problems so stairs, squats, bike riding, etc. are a problem, but as long as I put one foot in front of the other over level ground – even for just 30 minutes per day – makes a huge difference. I bought an step counter and my current goal is 5,000 steps, five days per week. I’ll creep up from there (over a period of months) until I get to that magic number: 10,000 steps, 5 days per week. ;0)

I wish you all the best. I’d added a 1-mile walk on Fridays, along with everything else until (one day), a pain hit me so hard in my low back that I thought I wouldn’t be able to get back home! What I later learned (Aug 2010), was that my spine had begun to develop “osteopenia”! BUMMER! From that time on, I didn’t push myself as hard, but later, I had no choice except to “lay off” and do something else besides that 1-mile walk; I’d gotten it down to 30 minutes (for a 61-yr old, I thought it was great, until I looked at the Army Physical Training Test ** Thank God, I’m retired from military service)! lol

Wow, interesting, who knew? Thanks for sharing.

LOL @ the Army Physical Training Test. They’d have to have an ambulance on stand-by for me!

Walking can be painful (my lower back on the right side does fuss about it) but I have been known to put on a bathing suit (!!!) and walk in the shallow end of a pool when my back is bad. I used to love to put on a water belt and exercise against the resistance of the water, but I can’t find a DEEP pool in all of Seattle for my deep-water aerobics.

Fortunately, I haven’t had too much pain in recent years so I have been able to spare the children the frightful sight of me in a bathing suit. Eeek.

If I were to win the lottery, most of it would be shared with the needy, but my one indulgence would be a pool where I could do deep-water exercise. Doing range-of-motion exercise in pleasantly warm water is a wonderful relief to stiff, achy joints.

Hey, JeanV. I still go back (mentally) to those days (Army, that is), because close to 23 yrs of my life was spent on active duty (May 1976 - Dec 1998). And, although it’s been 12 yrs since retirement from service, it’s still in my blood. :o) The “drive” that’s in me, I believe, is because of the training that was “permanently imbedded” by military service; so, when I do most things, it’s almost “to that standard”, so to speak. Aging, I dare say, reminds me that I cannot do what I used to do, but, if I could, I’d be out there every day still at it. So, I’ve “faced it” and do what I “can” do, and have stopped “stressing out” about what I can no longer do.

Have you checked to see if the Arthritis Foundation has a program in the Seattle area? It offers aquatic therapy, sometimes, via a hospital or clinic that treats the bones (therapy, surgery, etc.), and that warm water while exercising is phenomenal! You already know it. :o) I no longer participate in a daily aquatic therapy program for personal reasons regarding the facility, and changed to another Arthritis Foundation exercise program in the same facility, and most of the same exercises + others are done. Look into that. Maybe, there’s a facility that you a hospital sponsors that’s just for that purpose. I hope you win the lottery so you can fulfill that dream. :o)