Stay Active With Diabetes, A Movement At A Time

After a long winter, the weather is warming up, and the future is looking bright. This is the perfect time to get it going in outdoor activities. 

A healthy daily routine can help keep your well-being at its very peak. 

If you have diabetes, consider staying active, as this is very important for people living with this condition. Exercise can help you maintain a moderate weight, lower your blood pressure, reduce anxiety, and increase insulin sensitivity. 

How to enjoy outdoors activities 

The adoption and maintenance of suitable physical or outdoor activities are crucial foci for blood sugar management and the general well-being of an individual. 

Moderate exercise will help you increase insulin sensitivity. This means that it will help your body cells use the available sugar in your bloodstream.  

If you’re already having problems with blood sugar management, you may consider checking your sugar level before and after excising. 

To enjoy more outdoor activities without worrying about your sugar level getting so high or too low, you can bring your diabetic lancet or supplies with you. 

For people with diabetes or any other disease, the benefits of exercising cannot be overstated.

If you have diabetes, here are extra tips to help you stay safe while exercising: 

  • Exercise one to three hours after eating: The best time to exercise is at least one to three hours after eating, this is when your blood sugar level is likely to be higher, and it’s possible to have more energy to exercise at this time. 
  • Check your blood sugar before exercising: It is also good to check your blood sugar level, especially before a particular workout or activity. You can skip or avoid exercising if your blood sugar is above 250. 
  • Take precautions if you use insulin: If you use insulin, it is important to also test your blood sugar before and after exercising. If your level is below 100mg/dL, having a piece of fruit or snack can help boost it to avoid hypoglycemia. 

Start that activity!

If you enjoy being outdoors, there are many ways to be active outdoors. You can take a hike, go biking or even walk in the neighborhood. 

Spending as little time as 10mins outside will help lift your mood. You tend to feel happier, calmer, and less stressed. 

As you begin your outdoor activity routine, these few safety tips will help keep you safe:

Prep for your activities in advance: You can pre-pack your gym bag beforehand to grab them when you leave in the morning. “If you’re less likely to reach for them, you won’t go for it,” Dr. Powell says. 

Please speak to your Doctor: it is crucial to get your Doctor’s OK before proceeding with your activity routine. Make sure your Doctor also reviews your diabetic drug. 

Stay hydrated: Staying well hydrated should be one of your top goals. Drink at least 350-500ml of water a few hours before exercise. You can take a low sugar sports beverage too.

Inspect your feet before and after exercise: check your feet for any sores or blisters. In case you notice any, get treatment immediately.

Check your blood sugar level before and after exercise: before exercising and even after exercising, check your blood sugar level to ensure it is within the target range. Checking your blood sugar level will help you know if you will need a snack.

Bring healthy snacks: Take a small snack with carbohydrates of low blood sugar. It can be glucose tablets, fruit or cheese, and crackers. 

Warm-up and cool down: warm up for a few minutes at the start of your workout. You can take a 5-10 minutes walk or bike and a gentle starching at the end.

Keep your diabetic kit on hand: keep your kit at the back of your pocket for easy access.

Rest at intervals: take time to rest frequently in-between workouts. This helps reduce your chance of injury and enables you to regain strength. 

Tips that will keep you moving

You don’t need a health club membership or personal trainer to keep moving. All you need to do is find an activity routine that you enjoy and stick with it. If you’re starting,

Here are some recommendations to make physical activity a more significant part of your life. 

Discover new passions: you can consider yoga classes, join a recreational sports league or explore other healthy activities that you will love. 

Connect more with people: Think of exercise as a social time that helps you connect more with other people. You can sign up for exercise classes or schedule workouts with old friends. This will help keep you motivated and get you going. 

Walk the dog: if you have a pet, you can take a walk with your pet. Walking is a good choice for most people with diabetes because you can do it anytime and anywhere. Besides, if you don’t have a pet, you can also consider taking a walk with a friend or a neighbor. 

Do some exercise while watching the television: when you don’t feel like going outside, you can catch up with your favorite TV shows while you exercise. You can ride your stationary bike or do wall squats as you watch the television. 

Have your lancet in your pocket always

Take your diabetes testing tools with you wherever you go; this is crucial for your safety. It is easier to put it in your pocket. That way, you will always have everything you need to check your blood sugar. DigiVibe is a small portable device that can make your testing easier. A convenient travel case is available too!