I have Type 2 Diabetes, can I still exercise?

Posted on Aug 1 2011 at 04:37:56 PM in Fitness

I have Type 2 Diabetes, can I still exercise?

If you have Type 2 Diabetes, most likely you have a high blood glucose level, and either a low, normal, or high insulin level at the same time. High blood glucose levels can either cause insulin resistance that amplifies insulin production, or in some cases, overwork the beta cells that produce insulin resulting in decreased insulin production.


Because high levels of circulating glucose cause Type 2 Diabetes, exercise is the preferred means to counteract this condition since it lowers circulating glucose by using it as a source of energy. Both cardiovascular exercise and weight training are beneficial for a Type 2 Diabetic.


Cardiovascular Exercise

Cardiovascular exercise directly lowers excessive blood glucose. This direct reduction in blood glucose causes a decrease in insulin production, which improves insulin receptor sensitivity. The resulting re-sensitized insulin receptors maintain a more strict blood glucose regulation, which in turn reduces chronically elevated glucose and insulin levels. Cardiovascular exercise is most beneficial when you follow the guideline below:


  • Frequency: 5-6 days per week
  • Intensity: 60-70% age predicted maximal heart rate (Low-to-moderate intensity)
  • Duration: 30 minutes or longer


Walking, hiking, jogging, running, swimming, skating, bicycling, rowing, etc


Other positive effects of cardiovascular exercise include:


  • Fat loss
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Improved blood flow to extremities
  • Decreased triglyceride levels


Weight Training

Weight or resistance training can specifically target the muscles that are not predominantly used during cardiovascular exercise. This indirectly aids in expending blood glucose levels when the depleted muscle glycogen levels must be replenished after exercise by the circulating glucose.


Weight training is most beneficial when you follow the guideline below:


  • Frequency: 2-3 days per week
  • Intensity: Low-to-moderate workloads
  • Duration: 2-3 sets for 12-15 repetitions
  • Rest Intervals: 15-20 seconds between sets


Machines, free weights, wall pulleys, elastic bands, weight cuffs, etc


Train large muscle groups. Especially those not used in cardiovascular exercise. Use an agonist-antagonist work sequence for continuity.  This type of weight training utilizes muscle glycogen in contrast to higher intensity workouts, which largely require high-energy phosphates for contraction.


If you are new to exercise or have significant complications, supervised exercise may be more beneficial for you. We recommend consulting a physician prior to starting a new exercise & diet routine if you are over 40 and diabetic or obese. If you have already done so and are interested in a highly effective Exercise Routine and a supporting Nutrition Plan to improve your health and body composition, contact us at Azhar Therapy & Fitness or call 405-752-7377 to set up an Exercise Consultation.




The instruction and advice presented above are in no way a substitute for medical counseling. Azhar Therapy & Fitness disclaim any liability in connection with the recommendations and advice herein.

  Article Information
Author: imranazhar
Created: Aug 1 2011 at 04:37:56 PM
Updated: Aug 1 2011 at 04:44:35 PM
Category: Fitness
Language: English