3 Ideas for Train and Type 1 Diabetes

Once I daydream a couple of treatment for sort 1 diabetes (T1D), I dream in regards to the potential of simply going for a jog with out a lot planning past ensuring my AirPods are totally charged. With T1D, it’s a lot extra difficult.

However a little bit ol’ pastime of mine is making train with T1D less complicated. The extra you perceive the science of train, the extra possible you’ll really take pleasure in your subsequent exercise.

Listed here are three issues you’ll want to find out about train with T1D. (Discover a deeper dive on the following pointers — and extra — in my newest guide, Train with Type 1 Diabetes on Amazon!) 

  • Be taught the distinction between cardio and anaerobic train

Right here’s the nutshell model: Cardio (cardio) train tends to trigger low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) as a result of your physique cycles oxygen to your cells the place it burns glucose for gasoline. The extra insulin you’ve got energetic in your system throughout cardio train, the extra possible you’ll expertise hypoglycemia.

Anaerobic train, however, consists of issues like power coaching, sprinting, and intense spinning intervals — and typically it spikes blood sugar ranges. Anaerobic train is usually outlined as brief intense bursts of train you can solely keep for a few minutes at most. 

Your physique is working so exhausting that it might probably’t really use glucose in your cells for gasoline as a result of it might probably’t cycle oxygen to these cells rapidly sufficient. As an alternative, your physique produces its personal supply glucose by changing lactic acid into glucose and releasing glucose from the glycogen shops in your muscle tissue and liver. 

  1. Your basal insulin positively wants fine-tuning

Second, it’s all about that basal insulin! In case you have an excessive amount of basal insulin in your system earlier than, throughout, and after exercising, you’re very possible gonna go low. However too usually, I hear from individuals who say, “Nicely, I diminished my basal by 25 p.c about 20 minutes earlier than exercising! I nonetheless went low throughout … and 12 hours later!” 

Most individuals who say they plummet throughout a 15-minute stroll are most likely taking approach an excessive amount of basal insulin all day lengthy, not to mention in the course of the canine stroll. 

If you happen to use a pump: a 20-minute temp basal with solely a 25 p.c discount isn’t often sufficient. Most individuals will possible want wherever from 50 to 70 p.c much less basal insulin beginning a minimum of one hour earlier than they start cardio train.

However the basal adjusting doesn’t cease there. If you happen to’re going low within the hours after train, this tells you one thing very clearly: You’re nonetheless getting an excessive amount of insulin. You would possibly want to cut back your basal charge after train, too. And chances are high, your basal charges are too excessive throughout the board. 

If you happen to’re on a number of each day injections (MDI): There’s probability your whole long-acting insulin dose is simply too darn excessive in the event you’re going low when the one insulin energetic in your bloodstream throughout train is your basal insulin. You might be taking 5, 10, or 20 p.c an excessive amount of basal. 

When you make that discount, although, it not solely applies to the day you train however probably the subsequent day, too. In a great world, you’d make train a part of day-after-day so this new basal dose works nicely for many days. The extra constant your train habits are, the extra predictable the affect will probably be in your blood sugars and insulin wants!

It’s a cautious balancing act — decreasing your basal may imply you find yourself needing extra mealtime insulin. The start line although is to fine-tune your basal insulin so you may go for a stroll (with none rapid-acting insulin on board) with out hypoglycemia. If you happen to go low, it’s possible you’ll be utilizing an excessive amount of basal. 

  1. Contemplate exercising earlier than you eat

The second you eat a meal, you’re including a number of difficult variables to your blood sugar administration throughout train. Variables like:

  • Deciding whether or not to cut back meal bolus by 10, 25, 50, 75 p.c
  • How rapidly or slowly that meal digests
  • Low carb vs. excessive carb amount, which impacts insulin wants
  • The timing of the meal vs. while you plan to train — instantly after vs. one hour after consuming, and so on.
  • The size of your exercise — something over 1 hour would possibly require refueling with extra meals

“Fasted” train is the act of exercising earlier than a meal. In individuals with T1D, it additionally implies exercising when it’s been a minimum of 4 hours because you took a full bolus of rapid-acting insulin for a meal or correction.

If you happen to plan your train for when you find yourself in a fasted state, you might be eliminating a number of enormous variables that decrease or elevate your blood sugar throughout train. 

For instance, every morning earlier than breakfast, I stroll my canine 2.5 miles and run wherever from 1.5 to three miles. My blood sugar doesn’t drop as a result of I haven’t taken any rapid-acting insulin for a meal. I’m on MDI and I’ve fine-tuned my long-acting insulin dose to make sure my blood sugar doesn’t drop throughout train in a fasted state.

Look, there’s a lot extra to this! And I can train it to you — however not in a single article! Discover my 100-page guide — Train with Type 1 Diabetes — on Amazon!

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