Exercise dramatically lowers your risk for cardiovascular disease, the number-one killer of people with Type 2 diabetes. Sometimes it pays to take small steps. Although there is nothing wrong with having an ambitious goal, the execution may be daunting if it requires significant changes in your life. One must know how to walk before he can run. Just like a toddler starts with crawling before walking, you too need to take small steps when making changes to your lifestyle.
Like many people with Type 2 diabetes, you probably have the most to gain from being active. If you are currently physically inactive, adding exercise to your regular life on five days a week could be overwhelming. Unless you trust your willpower or you are remarkably disciplined, it is going to be difficult to maintain an exercise program if you are starting from scratch.
It is ideal to learn how to walk before you run which is why there is no harm in easing into a regular exercise program. While going to the gym or working out in some shape or form four to five times a week is the intended goal, you could start with just two days a week. Building up gradually is particularly useful for those who have little to no exercise experience. It is not a large commitment, and even the busiest individuals can find time to exercise on two days a week.
For Type 2 diabetics who are just getting started, it is beneficial to establish a two-month exercise plan. Consider the first month a transition phase, from physically inactive to physically active…
- two days a week for the first two weeks is fine,
- you can increase the volume to three days a week for the last two weeks of the month.
Gradually increasing your volume of physical activity is an excellent way to establish the habit while avoiding physical and mental burnout.
Experiment with different exercises during your first month. Running, cycling, walking on an incline, weight training, and fitness classes are all great ways to get fit provided you are consistent.
For month two, aim to exercise four times a week. Now exercising is a habit in your life; it should be relatively easy to make time for your choice of exercise. And since you know it is worth it; you are more likely to maintain your commitment, especially when you see benefits almost immediately. Alternate between your favorite workouts to avoid monotony, challenge yourself in different ways and track your progress. As long as you are eating healthy food, you should start to lose weight as well as become fit.
Once your eating plan is taken care of, there are no limits to what you can achieve. It is never too late to begin a fitness program even if you have never exercised before.