January 18, 2008, Newsletter Issue #137: Overcoming the Barriers to Exercise #2

Tip of the Week

For diabetics, exercise is an important part of the diabetic life plan.

The key to getting the exercise ball rolling is to identify your own personal barriers to exercise, and finding ways to overcome them!

Here are five common barriers to exercise, and solutions to help you get started:

1. I am afraid I will get low blood sugar: take your blood sugar frequently when you first start exercising, so you can gauge what your body does in response to the activity. Keep snacks and water with you, to recharge when you feel your sugar dropping or get a low reading on your glucose meter.

2. I am afraid it will make my condition worse: Talk to your doctor before starting any exercise program. Get a fitness check-up, and ask for help in planning an exercise routine that will help, not hurt, you. Ask for a referral to an exercise specialist or physical trainer to help map out your plan for exercise success!

3. I cannot afford to join a fitness center or buy equipment: Many exercises do not require fancy equipment or gym memberships, including walking, using cans of food for weights, swimming in the local public pool or lake, climbing stairs at the high school football stadium, or shooting hoops at the park. Finding inexpensive exercise solutions is easy and can be fun, in the process!

4. Exercise is just plain boring: Find out what you enjoy. Like rock hunting? Hike in the hills to find just the right specimens. Love animals? Volunteer to walk to the dogs at your local animal shelter. Enjoy children? Coach a neighborhood baseball, volleyball or basketball team and join in the conditioning exercises along with the rest of the team!

5. It is too hot/too cold to exercise: Finding temperature-appropriate locations to exercise can be a close as your nearest mall or shopping center. Find a superstore in your area, and walk up and down the aisles. Try the high school gym or community center.

Getting started on an exercise program can be challenging, but once you identify the barriers that keep you from getting fit, you are sure to find creative ways to overcome them. Start with baby steps - even little steps will get you to your fitness goal!

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