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Re: [IP] Running vs other forms of exercise

Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000 13:11:29 -0500
From: "Susan M. Fisher" <email @ redacted>
Subject: [IP] Running vs other forms of exercise

All my life, I've scoffed at the reports that a diabetic cannot exercise
(or their performance/energy level will suffer) at numbers above 200.

However in the past week, I've been convinced!  Former forms of
exercise, while extremely strenuous, were just not the same as running. 
I am doing a 10 weeks to a 5k program, and am learning all sorts of

1.  in aerobics classes, other high intensity sports - I would drop
drastically in the first 15 min and then level out.  I always
disconnected about 15 minutes prior and remained disconnected for the
2.  with running, I cannot disconnect or I will generally rise or not
budge.  I think it is more difficult for me, therefore my liver must be
kicking in some energy/sugar which makes my sugars NOT change and/or go
up.  I no longer have the sharp drop at the beginning either???  Must be
taxing from the first minute ;)

My question is for serious runners (which I would like to become!) - how
does running differ from other sports in terms of blood sugar for you?

What is your range of optimum performance?  Mine suffered about 210!!!


I certainly don't consider myself a serious runner.  I run about 10k a few 
times a week.  I have been running for 5 years, diabetic for 15 months and 
pumping for 6 months.

When I do other aerobic exercises, like an hour of kickboxing, I lower my 
basal less than I do for running.  Running for me is much more challenging 
and has a greater effect on my blood sugars.  I'm still concentrating on 
figuring out my best adjustments for running, what what has helped me, and 
it seems you are doing also, is testing during a run.  I have a belt with 
a meter case and I test at 15-20 minutes and then every 10-20 minutes 
thereafter depending on how I am doing.  For me, I can be really low 
(30's) and still feel ok while running, just think I am a bit fatigued 
from the run.  I think that when my basals were higher than what they are 
now I was going low without noticing and then rebounding.  I started my 
basal reduction to 70% and was sometimes ending up higher, so I upped it 
to 80%.  I was convinced it was my liver doing the dirty work, especially 
if I didn't have any food and bolus insulin in my system.  An exercise 
physiologist convinced me to do the testing, which I was resistent to 
because of the hassle, but her suspicion of the low was right on.  From 
doing all the testing over the past couple of months, I am now at a 50% 
basal and I turn it down about 20 mins before going out.  I am still 
dropping a lot at first, then level, then drop into the low range about 
30-40 minutes into the run.  I don't want to cut back too much too soon to 
start high, so I am making adjustments very slowly.  Although I don't have 
problems with not doing well at high numbers like you maybe because I have 
an early drop. 

I went to the IDAA conference last July and there were many runners with 
very different strategies.  Some like to (and amazingly are able to) keep 
in a very narrow range for a whole marathon, like 90-120.  There are 
others who get up wicked high to the 300's before a race and do the best 
in this condition.  I guess just continue experimenting and gather data 
and good luck!!

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