Kinda unusual, right? Well, I became a T1 at the ripe old age of 48, and went on the pump about 8 months later. I have been overweight for quite some time, but I found a diet that works for me, and I lost 20 pounds last month. As expected, I have had to do some adjusting to my basal rates. Down from 1 unit per hour to .5 unit per hour! Since I eat very low carb on the diet, I find I rarely have to bolus for meals now. The trouble is that I have become a gym rat! My blood sugar typically drops 100 points after a workout (which I do daily). If I eat more, I do not drop the weight like I want. Any suggestions for a low calorie snack that will spike my sugar prior to my workouts? I drop my basal to 25% for the hour before, during, and after the workout, but I still drop low.

Tags: 1, Dieting, Type, adjusting, basal, exercise, for, rates

Views: 281

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I drop mine 50%- you could eat an apple knowing you will burn off whatever carbs it is.


I just unhook my pump when I exercise... Hook back up when I'm done. You'd still have residual basal on board, though. I f you still go low, unhook a bit before you start, maybe?


I wonder just how long a person can be off the pump without ill-effects? So many variables! I just want to pull my hair out sometimes. Someone else told me that mixing carbs with fiber or protein makes them last longer and doesn't spike your sugar so much. Is that true?

I guess we are all living test tubes - I think it's ok to try stuff and see what happens. Choose what suits you best and gets the job done.


If you are not having to bolus at ALL for meals, unless you are really eating zero carbs, then it sounds like your basal rates are still too high in general. Even a 5-10g meal should require a bolus, if not then it's being "covered" by your basal (or you are still honeymooning).

So I would try lowering your overall basal rates more, start to bolus for meals, and then see if cutting back -75% works better for exercise.

I have to tell you, I can drop after exercise. It can be sudden. I think it is something called Post Exercise Late Onset Hypoglycemia (PEL). One theory suggests that it is the body refilling glycogen stores that have been depleted. It can happen anytime from 1-36 hours after exercise and is pretty common in kids. Mine happens about two hours after exercise. I found that eating a meal within 2 hours, I could pretty much stop it from happening.

If you experience drops during your workout, you may want to lower your basal preemptively, even 2 hours before. I take a protein shake with milk before workouts, the protein digests slowly and buffers my blood sugar over a period of hours.

I actually don't beleive that eating to support your exercise has to stall weight loss. I find that I am more insulin sensitive after a workout, a meal bolus may only require half the insulin I normally would require to cover a meal. This insulin sensitivity can persist for a while, up to 48 hours.

Yep, I get this. Mine is usually 20-27 hours after a larger-than-normal exertion (e.g. walking for two hours when I usually only walk for :30 to :45.) I dropped like a rock once when I had no idea what was going on -- from 130-ish down to 36 in about twenty minutes for no apparent reason about 24 hours after a strong work-out. I wasn't even on short-acting insulin then so it was definitely PEL and not an injection-related hypo. I have taken to eating a piece of fruit and not bolusing for it before a long walk -- or even slicing an apple and nibbling on it while I walk -- this gives my body enough sugar to burn and forestalls dropping while I exercise, but if I over-do it I have to watch my BG closely through the next day because the post-exercise increase in insulin sensitivity is unpredictable for at least a day to a day and a half.

I drink about 25g of juice right before my hour-long workouts. That seems to keep me from spiking high and from going low. My basal is already at 0.05u/hr the 3 hours before I hit the gym, so there's no lowering that. And if I don't eat/drink something, I will drop hard with a workout. My basal goes back to my normal rate at 0.4u/hr halfway through my workout. This usually does the trick.

Just a suggestion speaking as a personal trainer (I'm certified) don't rely on the scale so much. If you want to weigh yourself just do it maybe once a week around the same time of day.

Typically if you don't have to cover a meal then you're taking too much basal- but I'm not a doctor so i won't make that call.

As far as low blood sugars go- cutting back on insulin will help especially maybe 30 min before exercise- but honestly the amount of calories you probably consume to take care of the lows won't make an effect on your results. Health comes first. Diets and losing weight is always hard with low blood sugars (and putting on weight is hard with high sugars)

And i'm not sure how overweight you are or anything but 20 lbs in 1 month is a lot of weight- They say you should lose 1-2 lb a week. Sucks- but its a healthier way to lose weight (although the more overweight you are the more you can lose at first but it will eventually start to slow down).

Also (just a heads up) as far as low carb diets go- (I'm not sure how long you've been on it)- You're body depletes itself of glycogen (which is a stored form of carbs). Glycogen binds with water which gives it weight- So in other words when you go on low carb diets you might lose a certain amount of weight at first because of glyocogen/water storage loss. And also the flip side when you start eating more carbs you might put on a seemingly "large" amount of weight at first because its your glycogen stores replenishing. However despite what the scale tells you about weight- those numbers don't necessarily reflect fat gain/loss.

Nevertheless Just eat healthy and exercise! Wish there was more too it than that hahah

ps hopefully my post didn't sound discouraging- your progress and motivation is/are amazing!

I would suggest that the type of work-out you are doing also has an impact on your overall BG profile. I don't do long, slow cardio anymore. I do high intensity interval training over a much shorter period of time. High intensity revs up the metabolic rate over a longer period of time after the workout, and generally leads to bigger gains in lean body mass. For me, that means lower basal rates overall and less basal adjusting just to get through a work-out.

For me, it's easier to manage my BGs on that type of plan as well. I'm only doing cardio for 20 minutes so, even though I might drop up to 100 BG points for the workout, I don't have to constantly manage my BG just to get me through. I'll only have to spike my BG into the 140-160 range at the most to start, and I'll generally be in the 60-90 range at the finish. From there, I can adjust accordingly and easily keep track of any further drops.

I think the most carbs I have ever had to eat to get me through to the end of 1.5 hour cardio + weights work-out was 50g. That was only because I had to correct a hypo just to go to the gym. Usually, 24g of carbs, total, will get me through a work-out without having to adjust basals. That's 4 rolls of smarties over 2 hours, which I wouldn't think has much of an impact on weight gain.

Thanks to everyone for all the help...some really good info and suggestions. The answer is probably a combination of what to eat, when to eat it, and how much to cut the basal by (including turning it off if necessary). I like to keep a real tight control, between 80 and 115. My endo says I could just let my blood sugars run a bit higher to avoid problems. 160 all day until my workout doesn't seem acceptable though. I wonder what range you guys consider the 'sweet spot'...or just right?

haha i feel like a bad diabetic because i have trouble keeping my sugars that low. They're normally between 150 and 250 :[
You could always eat something like a banana a half hour or so before exercising which will spike your sugar then exercise.




From the Diabetes Hands Foundation blog...

DHF Joins Diabetes Advocacy Alliance

Diabetes Hands Foundation is incredibly honored to join the Diabetes Advocacy Alliance, an organization with the drive and potential to affect a powerful, positive impact on diabetes and healthcare policy. Diabetes Advocacy Alliance is a 20-member coalition of leading professional Read on! →

Helmsley Charitable Trust Renews Support for DHF

HELMSLEY CHARITABLE TRUST GRANTS SUPPORT TO DIABETES HANDS FOUNDATION FOR FOURTH YEAR  Funding in 2015 to support major transitions in programs and leadership at Diabetes Hands Foundation BERKELEY, CA: February 18, 2015 – The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Read on! →

Diabetes Hands Foundation Team


Melissa Lee
(Interim Executive Director, Editor, has type 1)

Manny Hernandez
(Co-Founder, has LADA)

Emily Coles (Head of Communities, has type 1)

Mila Ferrer
(EsTuDiabetes Community Manager, mother of a child with type 1)

Mike Lawson
(Head of Experience, has type 1)

Corinna Cornejo
(Director of Operations and Development, has type 2)

Desiree Johnson  (Administrative and Programs Assistant, has type 1)


Lead Administrator

Brian (bsc) (has type 2)


Lorraine (mother of type 1)
Marie B (has type 1)

DanP (has Type 1)

Gary (has type 2)

David (has type 2)


LIKE us on Facebook

Spread the word


This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here.

© 2015   A community of people touched by diabetes, run by the Diabetes Hands Foundation.

Badges  |  Contact Us  |  Terms of Service