Diabetes: 6 healthy ways to exercise

The top fitness tips that diabetes patients should know, to stay in tip top shape while keeping their health condition in check

For people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, exercise is an essential part of their treatment plan1. Exercise helps make the body more sensitive to the action of insulin. Keep these six top tips in mind and you'll soon be embracing an active and healthy lifestyle. Remember, slow and steady wins this race.

  1. Ask your doctor for help

    Your doctor and physiotherapist can share more about the precautions you should know, before you start on any new workout or exercise regime. By explaining how vital regular exercise is to managing your condition, these experts could give you the encouragement you need too!

  2. Start a logbook

    Talk to your healthcare professional about the best time for you to check your blood sugar, such as before and after you exercise. During the first three weeks of a new exercise routine, it is also recommended that you monitor blood glucose more frequently than normal.

    Be sure to log the blood sugar results, to keep yourself motivated. Knowing the real difference that workouts can make will help inspire you to continue your exercise regime.

  3. Start small

    Embrace exercise in all of its forms: Every little bit counts and exercise can be done just about anywhere. For instance, you could choose a more distant parking spot or take the stairs. You could also plan a walking or jogging route that you can take regularly. Other daily activities that you could try include gardening, washing the car by hand, golfing and household chores like vacuuming add up to the exercise tally.

  4. Make exercise a regular part of your routine

    Do it at the same time every day or every other day, to turn exercise into part of your daily routine. Put it on your calendar and you'll be less likely to skip it.

    Admittedly, keeping up regular activity is hard when you're just starting out. It can take about six weeks to truly adopt a new habit. If you've fallen out of the practice, take this chance to jump-start your routine.

  5. Find fitness friends

    Join a class to explore a new interest; it’s even more fun when you’ve good company. Find an exercise partner, be it a friend or a family member as you'll be more likely to stick it together.

  6. Don’t procrastinate

    Today is the “tomorrow” you've been talking about. Just do it! Keep a log of all the exercises you have done. Looking back, you'll be pleased with all of your progress.

  7. 1WebMD. Retrieved on August 28, 2015 from: http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/diabetes-weight-loss-finding-the-right-path.