6 Steps To A Fitter You
Diabetic Living Australia|May - June 2021
Moving more is essential for keeping your type 2 on track. You’ll love the side effects of losing weight and feeling great!
Natalie Filatoff , Dr Kate Marsh, Christine Armarego, Lisa Urquhart (Dietitian)

Whether it’s taking the dog for a walk or lifting weights in the ad break of your favourite TV show, every little bit of physical activity counts towards getting the scales and your BGLs moving in the right direction.

In every issue we give you lots of recipes and information about meals that will give your diabetes management a healthy lift, the next step is to make regular exercise part of your natural routine.

Why? Because exercising improves the sensitivity of your cells to insulin and increases the uptake of glucose from your bloodstream.

‘That means you will feel less tired and you will have lower circulating glucose levels,’ says accredited exercise physiologist Christine Armarego. ‘High BGLs are the cause of diabetes complications, so regular exercise prevents complications.

‘Every bout of exercise you do improves your insulin sensitivity for up to 48 hours, peaking at 24 hours. Exercising daily will have the optimal effect, but if you can’t manage that, aim to exercise every second day.’

Feeling daunted by the idea of starting an exercise program – and sticking to it? Just follow our simple, step-by-step guide…

ONE

Give your GP the heads up

Before you start any new exercise program, it’s important to check in with your GP or endocrinologist to confirm you’re physically and medically able to exercise.

Your care team can also help you understand how exercise will affect your BGLs and whether your medication, food intake or insulin will need to be adjusted when you begin.

Once you’ve got the all-clear, seek advice and a program to suit you from an exercise physiologist or a trainer recommended by your GP or diabetes educator.

TWO

Start gently and build on your success

Armarego stresses that everyone is different in their relationship to exercise – we all have exercise baggage of good or bad experiences that we carry around with us. Starting small is a proven way of overcoming this baggage and of developing a new and positive relationship with training.

For example, Armarego says she might start a client who is fearful of or resistant to exercise with simple activities such as sit-to-stand (sitting in a chair and standing up), walking up and down the hallway, and using light hand weights to build arm strength.

The boost you get from increasing your activity and from becoming more comfortable with exercise will fuel you as you progress to the next phase.

A combination of cardio and strength will have the greatest positive effects

THREE

Discover what’s right for you

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