On those days when it is simply brutal to get out the door and actually exercise, I try to remind myself of what the benefits of exercise on my diabetes are.

This is exactly why I wrote my book, 42 Ways to Motivate the Sedentary Diabetic to Actually Exercise. (Click HERE to view at Amazon)

Picture a sailboat with its sails full of wind, being propelled along by that very wind. Similarly, reminding ourselves of exercise benefits can be the wind that pulls us out of our lethargy. Remind yourself and BOOM, it’s a little easier to move into some form of exercise.

Below is a excerpt from Harvard Medical School’s Healthline website on the benefits of exercise on diabetes … they say it pretty well, here goes:

Many studies underscore these and other benefits from exercise. Following are some highlights of those results:

  • Exercise lowered A1c values by 0.7 percentage point in people of different ethnic groups with diabetes who were taking different medications and following a variety of diets—and this improvement occurred even though they didn’t lose any weight.
  • All forms of exercise—aerobic, resistance, or doing both (combined training)—were equally good at lowering A1c values in people with diabetes.
  • Resistance training and aerobic exercise both helped to lower insulin resistance in previously sedentary older adults with abdominal obesity at risk for diabetes. Combining the two types of exercise proved more beneficial than doing either one alone.
  • People with diabetes who walked at least two hours a week were less likely to die of heart disease than their sedentary counter- parts, and those who exercised three to four hours a week cut their risk even more.
  • Women with diabetes who spent at least four hours a week doing moderate exercise (including walking) or vigorous exercise had a 40% lower risk of developing heart disease than those who didn’t exercise. These benefits persisted even after researchers adjusted for confounding factors, including BMI, smoking, and other heart disease risk factors.

In general, the best time to exercise is one to three hours after eating, when your blood sugar level is likely to be higher. If you use insulin, it’s important to test your blood sugar before exercising.

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