Diabetes and Exercise

 

Exercise is key to a healthy lifestyle. However, you should always consult your doctor before engaging in strenuous exercise; safety is the priority.

T1D management for athletes is unique to the individual and depends on many variables including the sport, athlete’s health needs, length and duration of training, upcoming competitions, etc. The primary risks of physical activity for the T1D athlete are essentially two:

To prepare for hypoglycemia, keep at least 15-20g of fast-acting carbohydrates on hand at all times. Also note that the risk for hypoglycemia is higher if you skip a meal or exercise strenuously or for a long duration. Aerobic exercise, such as jogging, tends to drive blood glucose down.

Certain high-intensity or anaerobic exercises, such as weight lifting, can increase blood glucose. Listen to your body, check your blood glucose often, and look for patterns to help you adjust routines.

Find out the reasons for hyperglycemia and how you can have better blood sugar control while working out. Discover the benefits of anaerobic exercise (or weight lifting). Learn how to safely lose weight with Type 1. Exercise in general may increase insulin sensitivity and aid in overall better diabetes management. Peruse Beyond Type 1’s exercise resources before you start and read inspiring personal stories to get you motivated.

 

Get Started

Start Working out with T1D


I’m a big advocate of resistance training. I even compete in fitness competitions so I definitely practice what I preach. I believe that resistance training is the most effective way to get in shape...MORE

3 Diabetes Fitness Myths You Shouldn’t Believe


I want to talk about diabetes myths because I hate seeing some of these myths discourage people living with diabetes from exercising, eating well and living full and healthy lives.MORE

Get Out There – The Must-know Exercise Tips


So whether you are just getting started or are looking to increase the intensity of your workouts, here is the helpful advice our panel had to share!MORE

Get Moving with T1D: Exercise Basics


Get moving with a healthy, blood sugar friendly exercise routineMORE

Your Child Can Exercise Safely with T1D


Learn helpful guidelines for when to reduce your child's insulin intake, increase carbohydrate, and respond to various blood sugar levels.MORE

Manage the Highs & Lows

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


Editor’s Note: Phil Graham (BSc, CISSN) is a certified sports nutritionist and competitive body builder. Learn more of his training tips on his site Diabetic Muscle and Fitness.  High blood sug...MORE

Blood Sugar Control — During and After Exercise


I’ll walk you through three different types of exercise, and what you usually can expect from a blood sugar perspective. I also suggest strategies for managing your blood sugar during and after each...MORE

5 Moves to Bring Down Blood Sugars in a Pinch


Trainer, nutritionist and diabetic health coach Matt Vende Vegte lets us in on his favorite five moves to bring stubborn BGs down - and you can even do them in the office! MORE

How To Prevent Lows During Exercise With Exercise Itself


Dr. Sheri Colberg shares her ways to prevent lows during exercise using specific exercises to do so. She has compiled these methods using research + athlete experiences.MORE

Don’t Crash: How to Manage Exercise Lows


Dive into the science behind the blood sugar drops during and after exercise so you can better understand and plan for them. MORE

Anticipate the Rise: How to Manage Exercise Induced Highs


Have you ever wondered why, with certain types of exercise, your blood sugar does not drop or even, in some cases, rises?MORE

Reach Your Goals

How to Reach Your Body Goals without Obsessing over Weight


As a personal trainer, and especially as a personal trainer who specializes in helping people living with diabetes reach their fitness goals, I always recommend a strength building fitness plan over a...MORE

How to Build Muscle with Diabetes


This is a basic overview of how muscle tissue is built and the important considerations people living with diabetes need to make in order to maximize their muscle growth potential. This advice is suit...MORE

Post-Workout Meals and Diabetes: How to Fuel for Success


After an intense workout, your body wants energy and wants it NOW. There is no “wait a minute.” So how does our body respond? We turn to the most accessible sources: glycogen and (some) blood gluc...MORE

6 Ways to Make Sure Your Next Goal is a Success


Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, Ben Tzeel, gives 6 ways you can make your goals a success. No more excuses, and no more falling off that treadmill. MORE

Ramp Up Your Exercise Performance


If you’re looking to ramp up your athletic performance, either for a major event or just to meet a personal goal, here are some tips and tricks. MORE

Dive Deeper

The 5 Go-to Yoga Practices that Saved my Life


I discovered that Yoga is more than a good stretch. It’s a tree with many branches, each limb a path back to harmony and balance, a way to mitigate stress.MORE

Swimming and T1D


Whether swimming for recreation or competitively, at the pool or beach, it's important to keep some things in mind while managing Type 1 in the water. MORE

Riding On Insulin – Tips for Skiing and Snowboarding with T1D


ROI puts on ski and snowboard camps for kids with T1D (and their siblings) across America, Canada and even New Zealand.MORE

Yoga for People with Diabetes


While I didn’t start yoga to help me manage my diabetes better, every day my practice helps me do just that. Here are three ways yoga helps you conquer your diabetes, off the mat.MORE

Backpacking 101: Tips from the Experts at Connected in Motion


At Connected in Motion, we love connecting people around adventure. We love the intense sense of community created by a group of people exploring the edge of their comfort zones and leaping into the u...MORE

Yoga for Diabetes


The word yoga means wholeness, completeness. Instead of seeing myself as incomplete, yoga has taught me that no matter what happens to my body, the one looking out through the eyes (the experiencer) c...MORE

The T1D Guide to Running Your First Marathon


So, you have T1D and you want to run a marathon? You’re in luck! Alexi just did and shares her tips and tricks.MORE

 

Personal Stories

Cycling

Top Irish Cyclist Diagnosed with Type 1


After consulting with my healthcare provider on a diabetes management plan, including nutrition and exercise, I went home from the hospital and went cycling. After that, I decided I wasn’t going to ...MORE

Type 1 Training Tips from a National Champion Cyclist


One of my biggest goals is to represent my country and Team Novo Nordisk in the 2020 Olympics Games. Not only would it be the pinnacle of my athletic career, but it would also be an incredible platfor...MORE

Transform Your Passion Into Character


David Lozano is a cyclist on Team Novo Nordisk, the first all diabetes professional cycling team.MORE

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


Emanuel Mini is the first and only Latin American cyclist on Team Novo Nordisk, the first all diabetes professional cycling team.MORE

Running

The Toughest Footrace on Earth


On March 11, 2016, Roddy Riddle, ultra-marathon runner from Scotland with Type 1 diabetes, will embark on the toughest race in the world and most certainly of his life — the 6633 Ultra Marathon of t...MORE

5 Tips for Running with Type 1 Diabetes


Running with diabetes hasn't always been pretty. It's been trial and error every single day. Within 10 days of my diagnosis, I had all the technology available to assist with diabetes manage...MORE

How I Learned to Love my Body


For the first time in my life, I was okay listening to my body. I listened to it when it was in pain, or when it told me it needed a day off. MORE

Weight Lifting

Bolus and Barbells — Heavy Weight Champion Inspires


With very little training, Rodney competed at 210 pounds and won second place in the deadlift and first place in the bench press. He discovered that he truly enjoyed competing, and all the training an...MORE

Party Animal Turned Physique Competitor


I've been Type 1 diabetic for 18 years, which has had its ups and downs. My control over the last 6 years has been good due to exercise and nutrition education, but it wasn't always that way...MORE

Type 1 Powerlifter Redefines “Disability”


As far as personal fitness accomplishments, Chris currently holds four state records for powerlifting, and is on track to become a pro Powerlifter. "I can deadlift 606 pounds which is almost 3.5 ...MORE

Dance + Gymnastics

What It’s Like To Be a Ballerina with Type 1


I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes during my sophomore year of high school, which was the biggest year for my dance career so far.MORE

Dancing in the Macy’s Day Parade


Herald Square was not meant to be a stage. It felt strange; instead of being surrounded by spotlights and curtains, I was standing in the middle of New York City, in nothing but a dance costume.MORE

A Gymnast Superstar Lands on Her Feet


Gymnastics, just like diabetes management, requires hard work, commitment and perseverance. Gymnastics is my life and everyday I work through tough times until I reach the top. That’s what makes a c...MORE

Yoga

The 5 Go-to Yoga Practices that Saved my Life


I discovered that Yoga is more than a good stretch. It’s a tree with many branches, each limb a path back to harmony and balance, a way to mitigate stress.MORE

M is for Meditation


Have you ever wondered what all the fuss is about with meditation? Or have you told yourself you’re too busy to give it a try? Well I’ll let you on in on a secret.MORE

Striving for a Personal Best


When I joined my first Facebook group, I tried to remember my yoga training. But it was hard. Just like balancing on one leg is near impossible so is managing diabetes. MORE

Surfing + Swimming

Swimming On Insulin


A few weeks ago I wrote a letter called “Dear Diabetes.” An incredibly positive response followed that story and lots of people asked about my diabetes management during practices and meets. Hopef...MORE

T1D Swimming Champs


Swimming the length of a pool can be a daunting task for just about anybody. Try being a 6-year-old, summoning the courage and strength to swim as many as 20 laps a day.MORE

General

Fitness Now with T1D


I often became overwhelmed with frustration that I had to fight for one-tenth of the energy I once had. I no longer had the same endurance, strength or drive to push myself to maintain my strict exerc...MORE

I went from “I can’t walk” to “I’m cycling to Paris”


Two days into taking insulin with no clue of what was to come next, I signed up for a 3-day event cycling from London to Paris in September 2016. At the time I had lost significant weight, had no musc...MORE