By debcox Latest Reply 2014-08-31 08:54:32 -0500
Started 2014-08-25 11:32:15 -0500

Good morning. I haven't seen any discussions on exercise and wanted to see how exercise effects your diabetes. I was diagnosed with diabetes in May of this year and personally was very angry. Mostly with myself because I was prediabetic for years and did nothing to change so I should not have been surprised when I was diagnosed. Especially since many members of my family have diabetes. I was told by many people that when you are first diagnosed you take pills for a bit and then move on to insulin. Not me, I was diagnosed on a Thursday and had to start with insulin and a pill, the following Monday. So now, I find out everyone is different and medications work differently for for us which is not really a surprise.

I am a veteran so I am treated through the local VA Medical Center. I went to the education classes and was assigned a clinical pharmacist to care for my medication needs. I talked to her weekly for the first 6-8 weeks and now I speak to her monthly or when I need renewals. I was told at the education classes that if you lose weight that there is a possibility of going off meds.

So, my goal as of May of 2014 is to be off diabetes medication my June of 2015 by eating correctly and exercising.

I started riding my bicycle 3 miles a day which was all I could do when I started. I now get up every morning, check my blood and see what my numbers are. If they are in the 80's, I have a 1/2 of a banana or a 1/2 cup of blueberries before I take off on my ride. If they are in the 90's I don't worry about it and get ready to take off. I ride between 11-15 miles in about 60-90 minutes depending on my route. I have a carry all on my bike with my cell phone, water and glucose tablets in case I need them. So far, I have not needed them. On my return home, I have breakfast which consists on a cup of green tea and two slices of peanut butter toast which is about 40 carbs. I usually wave to my grandsons on their way to school and read for an hour before I do a 30 minute video work out with Jillian Michaels.

I watch my carbs and usually keep them between 40 -50 per meal for breakfast & lunch. I have a light lunch of a sandwich in pita bread or leftovers from the night before. As for what I drink, it is water. I love to drink ice water with a squeeze of lemon, lime or Mio (many flavors). I haven't had a soda since I was diagnosed mostly because it is way too sweet. Once in awhile I have unsweetened tea with lemon. For dinner, I have between 40 - 70 carbs and then a snack around 9:00 pm of green tea with 2 slices of graham crackers or I have an apple sliced up with some cheddar cheese.

I log everything I eat and drink as well as the exercise I do, totals of carbs per meal/day, and my glucose levels. This way, if they are up a bit I know why. I have found out that while I can go out to eat that some places are just not good for me such as Mexican food, pizza and Long John Silvers. I can eat at these places but I have to decide ahead of my time to eat something and stick to it and that is difficult for me.

I reviewed a few of my days and found that I'm keeping my carbs down and checked out my calories which are averaging 2000 calories a day. I checked a website and figured that for the exercise that I do, that I need to eat about 2700 calories a day. This is for an active person which I am especially since I also watch my three grandsons each afternoon. When they are not doing homework, we are playing soccer in the front yard, going for a bike ride or swimming in the back yard. According to my calculations, I should be losing about 1.5 lbs a week but I'm not, Instead of 6 lbs a month, I am losing 3. My clinical pharmacist says that the insulin I'm taking is probably effecting my weight loss a bit but if I keep up the exercise that I will eventually lose no matter what.

I'm wondering, if anyone else is having an issue regarding their medications and exercise? I am not comfortable adding more exercise or less food because while I do want to lose weight, more importantly I want to be fit not skeletal.

22 replies

grandma rie
grandma rie 2014-08-30 19:05:26 -0500 Report

Seems like this site is growing and stories are showing up that I can relate too. Just want to thank everyone for sharing. What has helped me is portion control, which helps with my blood pressure , a triple probiotic, For Wellness, Exercise Which Is On Intervals Of A 4 mile walk, Cycle Riding , Trampoline, Jump rope, and because I am away for business 20 minutes on a treadmill . These are the activities that I know I will always do with my free weights. Took years for me to realize that diabetes will always be something to monitor and control. This year januvet along with Lantus are helping keep me at suitable numbers . Deb Cox thanks for sharing.

Glucerna 2014-08-31 08:54:32 -0500 Report

It's great that you're incorporating exercise and portion control into your life to help you manage diabetes. ~Lynn @Glucerna

tabby9146 2014-08-29 08:23:06 -0500 Report

congrats that is great!! I know my daily exercise is helping me tremendously (I control now by D&E) but the eating right, I kind of fluctuate whereas the first couple of year or so I did better on that.

ReaderReader12 2014-08-27 12:04:27 -0500 Report

Wow…11-15 miles on your bike. You rock I don't think at this point I can even balance on my bike without falling over like Arty Johnson used to do on the trike on Laugh-In (anyone remember)? That is awesome. I make pizza on my 4g carb wraps and we love them and can make the pizza anyway we like. I do not thing we will ever order pizza out again. Just a thought anyway. Oh and when my grandkids were over they had the pizza that way also and they loved making their own.

Keep moving that is awesome and makes me want to do more myself.

debcox 2014-08-29 11:08:10 -0500 Report

Pam, Would you post how to make your pizzas in the recipe section? I'd love to try one. I think my grandsons would love to try them.

This morning we rode 15.15 miles and it was great. The awesome thing about riding my bike is that I love to do it so it does not seem like exercise. I think that it is important to do something that you love so you enjoy it. Our ride is getting too easy though so I just mapped out a ride that is less miles 13.5 but the first 5 miles is tough. It is up 2 nice size hills a little break and then a big hill before the nice long down hill ride and then a bit of an uphill grade. We'll see how we do on Monday.

We're having our grandsons spend the night tonight so I think that we'll do pizza and a movie night with them. I've got to get my exercise video done before they come over. Have a great day.


Glucerna 2014-08-29 17:53:46 -0500 Report

Your bike ride sounds like so much fun! Challenging yourself with a hillier ride is a great way to improve your fitness level. ~Lynn @Glucerna

tabby9146 2014-08-29 08:21:48 -0500 Report

what kind of 4 carb wraps and where do you get them? I love pizza!! I occasionally have thin slices and Ci Ci's I can do well at, their slices well most of the kinds they have anyway, are very very thin. I like to make it at home sometimes. I have wanted to try those 100% whole what Boboli crusts, does anyone know if they are good?

msann 2014-08-26 19:18:25 -0500 Report


Type1Lou 2014-08-26 17:39:39 -0500 Report

I just joined a health club and my routine, which combines aerobic and weight-resistant training lasts about 1 hour and 20 minutes. To my surprise, I found that sometimes my BG would go up rather than drop as a result of the exercise. But later, I would need less insulin since my body was still benefitting from the work-out. I went back to Gary Scheiner's book, Think Like a Pancreas, and found that "it is not unusual to experience a blood sugar rise at the onset of high-intensity/short duration exercise and competitive sports." He's got a whole section in his book about adjustment for exercise. I was reducing my pump's basal rate by 66% for exercise to prevent going too low but have since bumped it to 50% and will continue to adjust it until I get it right.

debcox 2014-08-26 19:24:57 -0500 Report

That's great, Lou. I don't usually check my blood sugar after I exercise unless I'm feeling light-headed. Who is Gary Scheiner? His book sounds interesting.

My bike rides last between 1 to 1.5 hours depending on the route that I take. I'm thinking that next week, I'll take a shorter but more difficult route.

Type1Lou 2014-08-27 15:07:17 -0500 Report

Gary Scheiner MS CDE is a certified diabetes educator, insulin pump user/trainer, and exercise physiologist. He serves on the board of the Diabetes Exercise and Sports Association and volunteers for the ADA and JDRF. His book is the best investment I made for learning about my diabetes. I believe I bought it via Amazon.

GabbyPA 2014-08-26 08:56:03 -0500 Report

I know you have found a few other discussions on exercise by now. The search bar will give you all kinds of options of discussions, videos and articles.

Insulin is a problem for many of us. It makes our bodies more efficient in getting the sugar out of our blood stream and into our cells. Unfortunately, if we don't burn it off, it becomes fat.

The other thing could be that you are actually building muscle quite a bit if you are that active and that can mask the loss of weight in numbers. That is why I go a lot by how my clothing fits, not what the scale tells me. I have been told to keep a 1500 to 1800 calorie day to loose weight.

debcox 2014-08-26 10:34:56 -0500 Report

Gabby, Thank you for your comment. I'm thinking that you may be right about muscle building because even though my scale is not showing lost weight, my clothes are falling off. Yesterday, while talking to my hubby in the kitchen, I put my hands in my pockets and my pants slid down. I've never had that problem before. Also, I've never had an issue with being cold as I've had lots of personal insulation :-) but now, I am cold quite often. I now have to wear a light jacket when riding.

GabbyPA 2014-08-27 07:15:42 -0500 Report

Congratulations. I know how you feel. I had lost enough weight around the middle to drop a pant size but it didn't show in the scale. I was so mad. But then I just figured that was how it was going to be. So I changed how I calculate my weight loss.

debcox 2014-08-27 17:38:53 -0500 Report

I had to do the same thing, Gabby. It was driving me crazy that I was exercising and not losing weight.

ReaderReader12 2014-08-27 12:06:37 -0500 Report

I know I am finally making changes that I can live with for the rest of my life when I no longer let the numbers run me. I am in control no matter what the scale tells me and that is very freeing.

debcox 2014-08-27 17:37:10 -0500 Report

So true, I've gone to weighing myself once a week and paying more attention to how my clothes fit.

Glucerna 2014-08-25 16:58:55 -0500 Report

I love the way you're combining purposeful exercise (bicycling and the Jillian Michaels workout) with being active and having fun with your grandsons. You're taking charge of your life, and that's excellent to hear. Just like there's no one set diet for people with diabetes; the estimates of calorie needs, calorie expenditure and rate of weight loss don't always apply to every person. The important thing is that you're making changes and seeing progress. ~Lynn @Glucerna

debcox 2014-08-26 10:42:34 -0500 Report

Thank you, Lynn. I was wondering why I was not losing as much as I thought I should but luckily my daughter found a website that explained how many calories that I needed a day with my new active (versus years of sedentary) life, how many calories I was expending and what I should be losing and it turned out that I was right on target. I'm also learning realistic goals which is important. The weight did not come on quickly and will not go off quickly. I am seeing progress daily which is awesome but I'm able to do more things with my hubby and grandsons which are not only fun but use up even more calories. One of the best things is that 6 months ago, we all went to go for a hike up a local mountain and I could not do it because I was out of breath before we got to the start of the trail. Last month, I went on a longer and steeper hike while we were out camping and I had to wait for my family to catch up. Hooray for me!!!