Diet and exercise affect blood glucose levels. If you are dealing with diabetes, you already understand the importance of monitoring your blood sugar levels and hopefully have spoken with your doctor about adding exercise into your routine. If your doctor has given you the all-clear, it is time to add strength training into your routine. This will help improve and control your blood glucose levels; here are some more fantastic strength training tips that will help improve your blood glucose levels.
Strength Training Tips That’ll Improve your Glucose Levels
For Starters: Know Your Range Levels
If you are under the age of 59 and generally healthy, aim for a blood sugar range between 80 and 120 mg/dl. If you are over 60 and have other medical conditions besides diabetes, try for a blood sugar range between 100 and 140 mg/dl. Always check with your doctor regarding a healthy range for your body.
Aerobic -VS- Strength Training
Different types of exercises use different types of fuel to support the workouts. For instance, aerobic activities such as walking, cycling, and swimming use primarily fat as the energy source. You also use glucose, but the majority of the fuel for an endurance type of activity is from fat.
In contrast, strength training uses primarily glucose as the fuel for the workout. This is why a strength training session is generally shorter than an aerobic workout, glucose stores run out faster than fat storage. Glucose provides quick energy for short bursts of activity such as a set of squats, push-ups, bench presses or leg presses. Therefore, your blood sugar levels decrease with strength training exercise.
Strength Training Guidelines
If you are new to working out, these strength training tips will prepare you for your new workouts.
- Begin with one to two sets of approximately 10 repetitions.
- Include exercises that target your main muscle groups. Exercises such as push-ups, shoulder presses, arm curls, arm extensions, squats, lunges, and sit-ups!
- Rest for 30 to 60 seconds between sets.
- Aim to perform your strength training workouts 2 to 3 times a week.
- As your fitness improves, gradually increase the number of sets and workout frequency.
Monitor your sugar levels until you learn how exercise affects your body, but you should begin to see an improvement in blood glucose levels. Soon, strength training will be a part of your care program.
Your Body WILL Respond
As your muscles contract and release with each push, pull, lift or lower, glucose levels decrease. This is great news if your blood sugar has a tendency to remain elevated. Adding a few strength training sessions to your week can help you improve your glucose levels and make you feel better overall.
Another benefit of resistance training is that the cells of your body become more receptive to insulin bringing in the glucose for fuel. This is known as insulin sensitivity. In a body that is dealing with diabetes, insulin resistance often occurs making it difficult for insulin to transport glucose in working muscle cells. So, not only are you training your muscles to be stronger, you are also training them to accept glucose easier, which reduces the amount of glucose left in your blood stream.