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3221 Views 6 Replies Latest reply: Oct 7, 2010 4:08 AM by sueinNC
aer1976 Amateur 10 posts since
Mar 5, 2010
Currently Being Moderated

Oct 6, 2010 8:06 AM

Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

A little background, I'm an early beginner.  I do run/walk intervals and earlier this year I had gotten up to 1:15 run/2:30 walks 3 days a week but then got very sick and had to stop exercising for 11 weeks (had several nasty lung infections including 2 separate pneumonia infections).  I only last week got approval from my doctor to start exercising again and have lost conditioning so this week I'm doing 45 sec runs/3:00 walks on 3 days a week.  I know that is very little compared to most people but I really did start out as a complete couch potato and have never really exercised in my entire life.  Up until this year I had the mistaken notion that asthmatics can't do cardio so I never even tried.


Well today I found out that my glucose tolerance test indicates I'm now diabetic.  My doctor (a different one than the one who treated me for pneumonia, I don't think this one knew I just got over that) told me to switch to a diabetic diet and to walk 3.0 miles every day of the week.  However, with me trying to start this running plan I feel like I need to have complete rest on the days between the runs.  Yesterday I did my run/walk workout and today my legs feel really tired.  They don't hurt, just the muscles feel really fatigued.  If I were to walk 3 miles today I really doubt my legs will be strong enough to do my 45 sec run/3:00 walk tomorrow.  I'm not sure how to handle this.   I assume my doctor would be okay if I substituted some other type of cardio for the 3 miles of walking, but I don't have access to other types of cardio equipment.  I always just use the treadmill in my living room.  I don't even have a bicycle or place to ride a bicycle to substitute that.


So how do diabetics who are supposed to exercise 7 days a week manage when new runners are supposed to be taking rest days between running workouts?


If it makes any difference, I'm a 33 year old female of normal weight (lost 32 pounds earlier this year), BMI of about 20.  I've already been trying to follow the diabetic diet as I was losing the 32 pounds and I'm fairly well educated on good carbs/bad carbs/serving sizes etc.  after I had to take a couple of classes when I had gestational diabetes when I was pregnant last year.

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Oct 6, 2010 8:15 AM (in response to aer1976)
    Re: Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

    Active rest is very good, you may find that the walk will help with your legs.  Just take it nice and easy.  The exercise will help with your sugar level.

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Oct 6, 2010 8:20 AM (in response to aer1976)
    Re: Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

    BOSNPM is right -- walking will not harm your recovery unless you are so injured that your doctor tells you to stay off your feet.  Walking IS rest for runners!


    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

  • flamomof3 Legend 1,928 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Oct 6, 2010 9:21 AM (in response to aer1976)
    Re: Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

    That Stinks!  I walk 2-4 miles on the days I don't run and Sunday is a total rest day for me. listen to your body and don't over do it Good luck

  • Speedymarathon Amateur 4 posts since
    Apr 28, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Oct 6, 2010 9:28 AM (in response to aer1976)
    Re: Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

    Hello I first want to commend you on your motivation and the excellent job you are doing so far. According to the medical guidelines published by the American Diabetics Association, they want people with diabetes to exercise at least 150 min/week. For example 30min 5 times a day, and it sounds like you are doing more then that so congratulations! I feel like if it was me I would set a goal for each workout. Elittes have numerous different types of workouts, farklets, intervals, long runs..etc the point I would think is to determine what your goals are. Is it to run a particular in the future? I read a great book that discusses training goals called "running with lydiard" it talks about how he coached some runners to win the olympic 5k. So to summerize I would say if you need to relax a day and not go out so hard, as long as it fits with your goals and you are staying on track will your other workouts, take an easy day, maybe lift weights or something else that day. Also you may consider, since you have a treadmill, to decrease the running speed and seeing if you can go for a longer period of time. Ultimately you know your body the best and with a little tweaking you should be able to find out what works the best for you. GL with your running!


    Also did you talk with your doctor about risks of hypoglycemia or too low sugar? I don't know your exact lab values, but you might want to get a couple glucose tablets that you could take in case you start to feel shaky etc... (usually 15 g of carbohydates is enough to treat hypoglycemia).


    Have a great day!

  • sueinNC Pro 80 posts since
    Jan 31, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Oct 7, 2010 4:08 AM (in response to aer1976)
    Re: Diabetic Beginning Runnners and Rest Days

    Welcome aer1976

      There are threads for all kinds of running subjects. I follow the penguins (slow runners) and the mighty masters (those over 40). Masters is an age class that the powers that be in the sport came up with. I am no master in experience.  I waa diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in Dec 2009. I started exercising a couple days after  Christmas for the first time in a LONG time. I bet you figured out that what your blood sugar after exercising depends on the type of diabetes, medications taken, your weight and other variables. This is a highly indiviual disease but that said many of us react in similar ways.


    You are doing great. Try to get in 150 minutes a week. Don't worry about distance and pace that will all come and you don't want to overstress ligaments and tendons. Muscles and a our cardiovascular system adapt pretty quickly but tendons and ligaments lag behind. It takes about 3 months for them to adapt. So it's the beginning of October, our ligaments and tendons probably have adjusted to what ever stress we put on them in the beginning of July. Since they are my weak spot and take SO long to heal, I don't push too much but that is just me. Also having damaged lungs , hopefully not permently from the pneumonia, it might take a bit longer to get your wind. Don't worry exercise as a lifestyle change like diabetes is a long haul job. Push some but not too much. You will learn when to push and when to wait a day or repeat a week of exercise.


    You may want to investigate the Couch to 5 k program. (C25k) You will find  C25k forums at this site as well. It went a bit too fast for me as far as how fast we added on running and dropped walking,many people repeat weeks  but now  I run 6/2 now for my training runs as of yesterday. My long runs I run 3/1 for 7 miles. I run very slow so the 7 miles takes 1.5 hours. I don't worry if I don't get my 30 minutes in everyday.


    I haven't lost much wht. 3 lb since January but I have lost 11% body fat. Muscles of people can be marbled just like steak so I think I have lost my marbles and don't intend on getting them back. I carry a GU with me or chomps they are very fast glucose energy.  One day , since it was real early in the morning I popped a GU as I didn't want breakfast and wait to digest to run. I had to run at 4.45am to make it to work on time. I got distracted and 15 minutes later was feeling bad. My Blood sugar was 150 it is never that high in the morning , but the quick carb with the caffine ( you can get caffine free) was making me feel bad so i dropped what I was doing and got started into my run. I needed to burn off that sugar. I did fine. Now I only use a GU if my run will last longer than an hour and I take a GU or chomps 20-30 min into my run to help me down the road.


    You have alot of advantages over your parents, there are more medications, and information out there. You can test before and after a meal to see what foods set you off. You are concerned and not blowing off your diagnosis.


    Have a good run with cool temps and all down hill!

    Jan 1, 2010 39% body fat

    July 1, 2010 28 % body fat

    Total pounds lost: 4.5

    Crawdads Home Run Trot 5/8/10  5k 44:29

    Hickory Crusaders 5k 8/23/10  Volunteered- shut down a road

    Komen race for the cure 5K 10/16/10 45:20

    Hot chocolate 10k 1/22/10 Asheville, NC 1:30:00

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