Skip to content

    Diabetes Health Center

    Font Size

    How to Succeed With Your Diabetes Exercise Plan

    Take It One Step at a Time

    When Auyer heard about a weight loss and exercise class at Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, she signed up fast.

    She learned strength training exercises using elastic bands. She also started interval training, which means you switch your intensity or pace to make it harder or easier throughout your workout. For instance, Auyer walks on a treadmill for 10 minutes and then runs for a few more minutes.

    "The next thing you know, an hour has gone by, and I feel so invigorated,” she says.

    Get stronger, and your muscles burn more glucose. You will also burn more calories, says Shahar, who taught Auyer’s class.

    Reaping the Benefits

    To Auyer’s delight, her blood sugar levels improved.

    "Almost immediately, I noticed a change in my morning blood sugars, which are always really high," she says. After she started to exercise regularly, "they were dropping from an average of about 140 to 110. I was so excited one day -- I had one under 100."

    Shahar tells people with diabetes that “their muscles are kind of sleeping, so they’re not burning glucose or calories. But if they exercise, they keep their muscles awake all the time. They keep burning calories, they lose weight, [and] they make the glucose work more efficiently in their body."

    Miss a Workout?

    Setbacks happen -- you get sick, go on a trip, or have a crunch time at work. Make it a point to get back on track.

    Auyer’s advice: Remember why you started.

    "For me, that reason was my father. This is what he would want and this is important," she says. "That's the motivation to keep going."

    1 | 2
    Reviewed on August 21, 2014

    Today on WebMD

    Diabetic tools
    Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
    woman flexing muscles
    10 strength training exercises.
    Blood sugar test
    12 practical tips.
    Tom Hanks
    Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
    kenneth fujioka, md
    Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
    Middle aged person
    jennie brand miller

    Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
    type 2 diabetes
    food fitness planner