When we last spoke yesterday, I tried to explain to you how even though as children it is hard to distinguish between wants and needs, but as adults, we learn that lesson quickly. I hope that I started a small spark in your noggin’ to at least see for yourself how that breakfast muffin or that with which you needs really does affect your blood glucose. I hope that you were encouraged to learn what postprandial blood glucose is and do what you need to do to keep those spikes at bay.
Today I want to talk to you about something that you probably don’t want to talk about. Lord knows I didn’t want to talk about it, see, to my ears, it had always been a bad word, spoken in a whisper as to no have to actually follow through, the word is exercise. (wow, I should have typed it all along because typing it out loud like that is more silent than a whisper)
Since you have put choice to words and opted for the whole needs route and have decided to cut out the things that spike you, this part is going to be easy peasy. (I know, you don’t believe me now, you’re sick and tired, but I’m also hoping that you are sick and tired of being sick and tired!)
As a side effect (yeah, I know they don’t tell you this in T2D school) of not having the highs and lows of spiked blood sugar, you will start feeling better. I’m not talking about how great you think you feel after that chocolate glazed doughnut for what a whole ten minutes before you’re ravenous again and feeling like smashed crap, I’m talking about really feeling good. I’m talking about waking up and being like “hey, I feel good this morning”.
If you are like me, you’ve most likely avoided exercise like you avoid that one co-worker with the sniffles, it will be alright, start off slow. Because I’m quite fond of you, I’m going to share with you the easiest way I found to test the waters that is exercise.
- You find yourself low on a few food stuffs, you need to go to the grocery. You park in the furthermost space, walk up the parking lot and into the grocery, bypass the carts and grab those few things. The bagger says “need help?” you say “no thank you” and tote that bag back out to the car. BAM exercise. Easy peasy. You may think I’m silly, and of course I will agree because I simply adore being silly, but for your peace of mind feel free to use a pedometer and see how those steps add up.
- If you don’t already have some sort of device used for playing music in your kitchen, go get one. (remember to use the whole grocery store parking strategy if you go get one). Turn it on, lose yourself in the music and let it move you. It doesn’t matter if you have two left feet or think you look silly. If you think you look silly just close your eyes, you’re moving, and that means exercise.
- Side step. Ok, not in the sense of avoiding, but in walking. You’ve got to pick up those dirty socks or what ever who ever left in this or that room, take the long way. It’s easy, two steps forward, one step back, step to the left, step to the right, forward forward, back. You’ve easily doubled the distance from a to b, and exercised by proxy.
- Stop bending over. Seriously. Your back will thank you eventually. Each sock, toy, or item from a low shelf, squat. I like to Grok squat (feet flat) because I can, but a regular old on the toes squat will suffice, we’re just beginning right? Don’t tell me you can’t squat, you haven’t tried. Don’t tell me “my knees, my knees”, been there, done that, have the t-shirt thank you. You can if you just do it. Baby steps. A nice sturdy chair, hands on the chair for balance, try one, try two tomorrow, you’re welcome. Seriously, it took me at least a month to work myself up to un-assisted squats. I was pushing 220, so yeah, it wasn’t pleasant. The key is to not overdo it.
- Start laughing. It doesn’t matter if there is nothing funny, just do it. Find something funny and do it again. Google Dance Walking and laugh a bit more, then dance walk. The first time I did it, we were at the dollar store. I was lucky to not be tried as a witch in this small town, thank goodness. Seriously though, it’s not just great exercise, it’s a lot of fun. You can use a tune in your head or your portable music device. Just the other day while picking up my daughter at school I was witness to a group of middle schoolers dance walking. It was an amazing site. Not only were they dancing and walking, they were laughing. Nobody looks silly when they’re laughing.
Really, those are just for starters. Once you’re not so spiky and you give some kind of movement a try, you will see as I saw that exercise is not a bad word after all. Who knows, sooner or later I’ll show you my weight bench with or without me doing my girly workout.
It’s inevitable that you will see advertisements for some type of magic beans or pixie dust, maybe some invasive surgical procedure that will cure what ails you, in your case, Type 2 Diabetes, but don’t fall for the hype. Diabetes has no cure. Diabetes can be managed, controlled, in some cases, remissed, but to promise a cure in this day and age is akin to promising the rise of two suns Monday morning.
You, through what you eat and what you do, have the power to take control over your type 2 diabetes. Test often and eat by your meter. Move every chance you get. Learn that exercise is not something to be feared, rather something to be yearned for by all that energy you have when you’re no longer feeling sick and tired. Oh yeah, and baby steps.