Finding the Energy to Exercise

A long day at work, stress, social obligations – there is always a reason not to exercise.

But what do you do when you simply feel too physically drained for a workout?

Diabetics have to be just as committed as others to maintain regular physical activity for the sake of their health.

To keep your energy level stable and have enough "juice" to exercise, follow these guidelines:

Watch your Carb Intake

If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, you should already know that counting carbohydrates is essential to your health, yet it's also an important factor when it comes to energy. Too many carbs can cause your blood sugar to spike and then crash, leaving you listless and fatigued. Finding the right carbohydrate threshold for your day could make a world of difference in your energy level.

Work out at the Right Time

If you're having trouble getting in exercise because you're tired, it might be because you're trying to do it at the wrong time of day. If your energy is highest in the morning, for example, make that your time to exercise, instead of waiting until you get home from work. Conversely, if your energy peaks at lunch time, find a way to squeeze in a walk or a quick workout between your other responsibilities. Despite the theory that it's better to exercise at a particular time of day, it's more important that you just exercise – period.

Hydrate

One of the most common, but underdiagnosed, sources of fatigue and low energy is dehydration. Increase your water intake and you'll probably find your energy soar, while you may also notice an improvement in your workouts.

According to Yuri Elkaim, author of "The All-Day Energy Diet," the best way to calculate your water needs is to divide your weight in half and drink that amount of water in ounces. So if you're a 140-pound woman, for example, you should drink about 70 ounces of water per day. Keep in mind, however, that you may need to drink more if you're very active, you live in a hot climate or you're pregnant.

Stick to a Schedule

As the saying goes that we need to "make" time instead of "find" time to exercise, the same holds true for energy; you need to expend it to get more of it. Exercise, when done right, should leave you with more energy, not less. So getting into a regular workout routine by simply committing to a set schedule should give you an energetic boost within a matter of days or weeks.

Source: Web MD, Yuri Elkaim
Photo of dogs in bicycle basket by John Nyboer

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