Workout Routine

Anyone care to share their BG management routine for workouts?

My regular workouts are cardio and weights. For me, I don’t do any modification for weights and have no issues. For cardio, I cut off my basal 2 hours before working out. I try to target a starting BG of 140-160. Basal is off through the whole workout. I test every 15 minutes (usually working out 60 minutes on an eliptical or stair master). If I go below 100, I’ll take on 22g of carbs via Gatorade.

The routine works in general, but I always go high the hour after I work out. I’m thinking I need to turn on my basal toward the end of the workout to start balancing out again.

Any comments or suggestions? Also thought it might help y’all refine your own workouts or give folks confidence to start their own. Comments appreciated.

I don’t lift weights enough to comment on that.
When I run a short race (5 or 10K) or a track workout, I generally don’t mess with my basal rate. I try not to have a meal bolus within a couple of hours of the start, though.
For long runs, I cut my basal down by about 60%, then consume a power gel or accel gel every 45 minutes or so. I think they’re about 25 grams carbs each. I turn my basal back up as soon as I finish, and get a recovery meal with a standard bolus as soon as practical.
A starting BG of from 110 to 160 is fine. If it was any lower, I’d eat something before starting. If it was any higher, I might bolus a fraction of what I would ordinary use to correct. (assuming no insulin on board.)

Mike, how about instead of turning basal off 2 hours before, you turn basal down to 20%ish 2 hours before and leave it there until done working out? That may do the trick and I don’t think it will cause you to go low while exercising since you start between 140-160.

On days I only do cardio (assuming BG in range), I turn basal off when I begin to work out, eat 20 gs of carbs in form of protein bar before I start, and then turn basal back on when done at 70% for first hour and 100% thereafter. Still a daily work in progress.


I basically do the same things as you do and noticed highs after running when I went on the Omnipod pump about a year ago when I shut off my basal. Now, I keep a small basal rate going (0.20u’s/hr) and, believe it or not, actually take a bolus right after finishing my cardio to counteract the elevated glucose. It took some trial and error, but I normally bolus an additional 50 grams of carbs to whatever I eat or drink after my runs (primarily Gatorade or peanut butter & toast).

Don’t know if you’ve figured something else out, but I’d love to hear it.

I run every other day, and workout at the gym in between.

I used to cut my basal to zero when exercising until a diabetes educator pointed out to me that nobody turns of their pancreas when they run, so why should I? Doh! That explained the bouts with DKA after long runs - no insulin!! I needed a reminder that the insulin doesn’t have an effect for two hours, so when I turn it off now, two hours later there will be none there.

On runs under an hour (I usually run for 30 minutes) I don’t touch my basal rate. For longer runs I’ll reduce it to 20% of normal starting 90 to 120 minutes before hand, just like others do, and bring it back to 100% as soon as I’m done.

I like to start with a slightly elevated BG - 120 or higher. If I eat first and am starting high, I’ll calculate the correction and meal bolus then reduce it by 1 unit for each hour of upcoming exercise.

If I’m not eating I won’t take any correction bolus - I’ll use the exercise as correction.

If I’m in a normal range (80-120) I’ll take in some carbs first, like a piece of fruit or a granola bar or a cookie . . . some ice cream . . . a donut . . . something I shouldn’t be eating in other words.

If I’m over 250, I don’t exercise - for me it raises my BG. I’ll wait until it comes down.

I test every 30 minutes. For runs over 1 hour I’ll eat some GU or other gel every 30 minutes or so. I basically just carb up during the run - gels and diluted Gatorade - at a steady rate of intake, modified by my current BG.

Afterwards, I’ll drink some more diluted Gatorade. Tried the recovery formulas, but those things are carbohydrate bombs and I haven’t figured out how to bolus to stay ahead of the spike in BG they cause. I try to eat something balanced (carbs, fat, protein) within the next two hours.

I follow about the same routine that Mike outlined. Turning my basal to 50% 1-2 hours before the workout and leave it there until the beginning, middle, or end of my run. When I start my run,
if I am above 150, then I turn the basal back on in the beginning of the run
If I am 100-150, then sometime during the run
if I am below 100, then I wait until the end of the run

I usually only run for 40-60 minutes… I was surprised to read that Jerry and Terry don’t change the basal rate for runs like this. I experienced several lows even on runs that short before I started reducing my basal!

I also sometimes experiences highs 1-2 hours after running. So I think that I need to give a small bolus right after my run to compensate for the period of reduced basal.

If I know/knew what the particular class activity will be, I might alter my injection site if it pertained. Rarely does but theoretically could.

Aim for an additional 75-100 point buffer before working out, eg 175-200 would be my generic target from which to start exercise. Much below that and the threat of a low exceeds the benefit of tight (sic. rigid) control IME.

See no need to bring the tester to workout… if I believe I am low/going low 15 grams (LIQUID form, preferably carbonated), and keep going. No drama or feeding the obsession for numbers needed…IMHO-fwiw.

Doing machine/mechanically assisted workouts better bring some type/kind of entertainment, somebody needs to be distracted by/from the boredom that comes with em ; D



I’m a newly diagnosed type 1. Your entries here and elsewhere have been helpful. I’m training for Boston (I finally qualified) and am nervous about getting this stuff wrong. I’m not on a pump yet. So, I’m following your advice about getting carbs every 30 minutes of a long run. Does anything CHANGE after 1.5 hours? That’s as long as I’ve run since my diagnosis.


Like Mike, I also typically combine cardio and weights. As weight lifting generally increases my blood sugar, I actually keep my basal at 100%. I counteract the blood sugar increase by doing cardio at the end of the weight lifting. I will also have about 45g of whey isolate about 30 minutes prior to the workout to stabilize my sugar and the same amount afterwards along with other supplements.

I lift weights for about an hour and I disconnect while doing so. I tried leaving the pump connected the first few times I lifted after going on the pump last September and it just seemed to get in the way. With my basal rate of .5u per hour, I bolus 1u right after my workout to cover the basal I missed as well as my post-workout protein shake. I aim for a starting BG of around 100 and eat about 20g of non-bolused carbs right before I begin my workout. I’ve been doing it this way for 6 months now and it’s been working great.

Hi all… just wanted update on my workout today. I felt super. My BS was 96 before I left for the gym. I had a Kellogs Fiber bar that has 9g fiber and 24g carbs. I took my normal 33 Lantus injection before I left. I took no Novolog at all. Worked out on Treadmill for 90 minutes, ran for 15 minutes and lifted weights some. I got home and checked and my BS was 112. Not bad. I always seem to have a low in the late afternoon or night. But I felt great today. Could have ran for another 20 minutes no problem. I’m going to try a 5k run tonight to see how I feel. I gained a couple of pounds from not working out last week. But I’m hoping to correct that this week. And be down into the 220’s sometime in the next two. GOOD LUCK ALL…

im not on a pump i take shots, but i usually start my workout with my BG 85-115 and it usually goes low so i just sip on a gatorade through out my workout, i try not to ever let my BG go above 130 at any time in the day if mine goes 140-160 i feel like crap, weak and i get burnt out after my 5th set etc.

I do triathlons, so lots of endurance stuff. I used to turn down my basals, but after listening to a TRIABETES doctor who actually works with triathletes I realized that, though my bs was stable, I was not feeing my workout enough and so my performance was suffering. Now I don’t mess much with the basal, but I feed more. Every 20-30 minutes 20-30 carbs. it gets my bs stable and gives me more energy to go farther before I fatigue. Also i noticed that if i exercise in the morning to add a few units. my bs always spikes when i exercise first thing in the morning so i need a little to battle the stress (but make sure you have plenty of sugars available if you try this one, its a little scary to give what you know would usually be enough to send you low)

I am type 2 and had a trainer worked out 2-4 four hours a day yoga weights and cardios my AC went from 7 to 6.8 I went to the hospital soon after I was filled will antibiotics and hydration IV’s for about 6 days or so I ate before and after the work out and drank about a 2 gallons of water a day I also come to work and spike/ I have been doing research on this and the hormone adreniline kicks in to compansate for the burning of calories when that runs out your body burns fat. I hear alot of people that eat during to the workout My question is does this provide a fuel source to prevent the hormone kicking in and raising blood surgar

I have been taking aerobic and step classes… I am trying to figure out how to keep my blood sugars normal after the class. Sometimes I drop during class…I have been drinking milk before the class which helps…but definitely raises my sugars after class…I am on a pump too…I am thinking of taking small amounts of insulin after class. Thanks for your thoughts