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Diabetic looking for some advice on recovery...

joeyyeahyeahjoeyyeahyeah Posts: 16
Hey up,

I wondered if there were any Diabetics here who may be able to share their knowledge & experience and offer some advice. I'm fairly new to mtb, and started doing it primarily because I switched from a fairly active job to an office based job, and as a type 2 Diabetic wanted to make sure I stayed fit. I'm fairly atypical for a type 2 diabetic, I guess- ideal weight for my and in fairly rude health otherwise.

My regular route, which I'm doing a few times a week, is somewhere between 10 and 12 miles. I'm coping with it pretty well- i.e. I haven't had any nasty blood sugar crashes. However, when I get home I feel tired, and never really recover until I go to bed. My fitness has improved to the point that I don't really get out of breath too much at all when I'm out, so I'm thinking that it might be something related to my condition.

Does anyone have any top dietary tips to aid recovery following a ride? I usually start my day with a bowl of granola and fat-free yoghurt with a handful of blueberries, and set off on my ride about an hour afterwards, if this is any help...




  • Hi,
    Are you on medication only ie Gliclaside or Metformin? Do you check your levels during the day? Have you ever had a low sugar attack, and do you know the symptoms of a low sugar attack?
    If as you say you are in rude health generally then I would suggest a phone call to your practice diabetic nurse first of all to see what she might suggest. Tiredness is certainly a side effect of diabetes so you should have this checked out and perhaps a meeting with the practice dietician to review your diet in general.
    2010 Trek Madonne 4.7
    2011 Bmc Promachine SLC01
    2013 Wilier Cento 1SR
  • Cheers for the reply.
    I'm on metformin. I've gotta say I don't check my blood-sugar throughout the day. It (thankfully) became so predictable that I got out of the habit. Plus, on my last couple of annual checks, my blood sugar has been at the low end of normal (around 4.0 as I remember). I've had low blood sugar attacks before, so I'm well aware of the thoroughly unpleasant symptoms- I can usually tell well in advance whether it's on its way and head it off, so to speak.

    I should be due an appointment shortly, so maybe I'll ask. I'd be keen to hear if anyone else has had similar experiences, though. Thanks again.
  • jonomc4jonomc4 Posts: 891
    I am 30 years type 1 diabetic. I ride about 200 miles a week on average. The only advice I can offer is learn by taking blood sugers before and after ride and about 4 hours after ride (those 4 hours is when you blood sugar really crashes) - once you know this start to balance it will the correct foods. I tend to bang in some lucozade for the ride and when I have finished (depending on the length and effort) I will have a snickers (or part of). It is really just a case of how you react.

    Type 1 and 2 have differences so using fast acting carbs may not be so useful - in which case you will need to stock up with complex carbs before the ride - but this does mean you are going to have to know how far and how hard you are going to ride beforehand.

    Basdically just experiment and take a load of blood test to see how you personally react - evenetually you will know how you react. Also don't forget during the night you will burn more energy as well as your muscles repair.

    When I started cycling I was doing 6 blood sugars a day to learn how it affected me - now I do about 3.
  • That's really helpful Jono- cheers. I think I am going to have to get back into the habit of testing more regularly.
  • I have to say, i'm looking for exactly the same advice. I was on metformin and Byetta, but through training and weight loss am now on metformin alone. Am 41, weight/bmi are now sound. Howver, when I ws on byetta I did experience the same symptoms as you did. After research, i found my sugars were dropping several hours after I finished excercise and remained low (though not hypo low, just low) as the muscles rebuilt and recovered. Ive been looking into products which have 'normal' levels of protien, electrolytes but either reduced or zero carbs and sugars so they can be balanced separately.

    Ive started using high5 zero drinks which seem to work well, but have not settled on any protien/shakes/bars to help my training, though i'm still ploughing through the myriad of data on the high5 and sis websites.

    I too am seeing my diabetes specialist in a couple of weeks and will seek their advice.

    As diabetes is supposedly becoming more prevalant in our society, there must be lots of diabetics willing to share their experiances?
  • So I bought a new bike (sight2) so naturally fettled it as I went round the red route at Sherwood. Eat time I stopped, I tested and I was very surprised as to how low sugars went and hw quickly they dropped. I wont bore you with the details but I stuck to eating stuff I could measure the carb content of, i.e. energy bars and tablets. I started the ride at 4.9mmol/l and ended at 4.2mm/l. I consumed 55g of carbs during the three hours but did feel a bit off a couple of times. In future I will aim for about 20g per hour. I'm 175cm tall and weight 73kg if anyone wants to use this data to guess what they should use themselves
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