Diabetes and Exercise

 

Editor’s Note: Consult your doctor before engaging in a new exercise regimen. Exercising with Type 1 diabetes can lead to potentially dangerous swings in your blood sugar levels.


Exercising with Type 1 diabetes is complicated. The type of exercise, time of day, length of your workout, types of insulin, pump vs. injections, the last time you ate, etc. are some of the many variables that determine how it will affect your blood sugar.

But regular exercise is also an important part of managing Type 1 diabetes and your general health, so learning how to make it part of your routine is worth the effort.

The primary risks of physical activity for the T1D athlete are essentially two:

To prepare for hypoglycemia, keep at least 15 to 20 grams of fast-acting carbohydrates on hand at all times.  Aerobic exercise, such as jogging, tends to drive blood glucose down depending on how much insulin is already active in your bloodstream. Learning how to adjust insulin doses and time your exercise accordingly can significantly reduce your risk of hypoglycemia during and after exercise.

Certain high-intensity or anaerobic exercises, such as weight lifting or sprinting, can increase blood sugar levels. Learning how to adjust insulin doses and time your exercise accordingly can significantly reduce your risk of hyperglycemia during and after exercise.

Here, we offer a variety of resources to help you manage your blood sugar around different types of exercise and different methods of controlling the many variables that make it complicated.

Get Started

Start Working out with T1D


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exercising with type 1 diabetes

Avoid Exercise Lows: How to Time Your Workouts Around Insulin Doses


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Manage the Highs & Lows

glucagon

Glucagon


Glucagon raises your blood sugar (treating hypoglycemia) while insulin lowers it (treating hyperglycemia or preventing it when taken before eating).MORE

10 Reasons For Hyperglycemia During Training


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Blood Sugar Control — During and After Exercise


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5 Moves to Bring Down Blood Sugars in a Pinch


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How To Prevent Lows During Exercise With Exercise Itself


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Don’t Crash: How to Manage Exercise Lows


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Anticipate the Rise: How to Manage Exercise Induced Highs


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Reach Your Goals

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Ramp Up Your Exercise Performance


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Dive Deeper

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Personal Stories

Here, you’ll find a huge variety of personal stories on managing blood sugar levels during exercise from people living with Type 1 diabetes.

Baseball & Football

Kendall Simmons and His T1D Diagnosis in the NFL


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Cycling

Top Irish Cyclist Diagnosed with Type 1


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Type 1 Training Tips from a National Champion Cyclist


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Cycling Cross-Country: T1D and Tubeless


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Transform Your Passion Into Character


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Life is Not a Problem to be Solved, it’s a Reality to Experience


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Running

The Toughest Footrace on Earth


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A Runner’s Guide to T1D


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How I Learned to Love my Body


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T1D Cardiologist Balances Life with Marathon Running


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Dance & Gymnastics

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Dancing in the Macy’s Day Parade


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A Gymnast Superstar Lands on Her Feet


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Yoga

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Striving for a Personal Best


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Surfing + Swimming

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