Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Stairs & A Diabetes Experiment

I'm not sure if you know or not but us diabetics make good scientists with all the experimenting we do.  I mean, every day is an experiment. 
I did some stair reps last night.  I tested my blood after the third rep and was worried it would go too low before I got a chance to finish my work out and maybe I would have to down some glucose.  So I went ahead and wasted a bunch of strips and did an experiment.  Keep in mind I had my temp basal pre-workout set at %25 for an hour ahead of time. 

Here are my findings:
Before I started I was 9.9mmol/l (180mg/dl).  I ate a few candies because I had a little bit of insulin on board and I like to be higher than that for the stairs.  Also, the stairs as I mentioned in a post awhile ago are 330steps.  It's approximately 4 minutes up, 3 minutes down totalling 7 minutes per rep.

After 3 reps I was at  7.7 (138)
After rep #4 I was at 7.2 (130)
rep #5 6.9 (124)
rep #6 6.6 (118)
rep #7 6.3 (113)
rep #8 6.0 (108)

My Conclusion?  For every 7 minutes of stairs my blood sugar drops an average of 0.36 mmol/l (6mg/dl).  Therefore, working backwards for example, if I want to do 10 reps of stairs, and I want my finishing blood sugar to be 5.0 mmol/l (90mg/dl).  Taking into account my temp basal is at 25% for one hour prior:

(0.36 X 10) + 5 = 8.6 mmol/l
(6 X 10) + 90 = 150 mg/dl

Starting blood sugar needs to be at least 8.6  (I can't forget the few candies I ate beforehand, they must have played a role in there somewhere)  Either way, not bad for an hours worth of cardio.  I'm really glad I did that.  The next experiment I'm going to do is running.  I'm going to test after each km and see what I can come up with as a solution!


  1. That is CRAZY!!!!!!! So weird how you learn these things about yourself!!! The average person wouldn't ever think about such a crazy concept! Great job on the stairs, btw. My legs are killing me now just after reading about them.

  2. Hey Scully...can you do a hockey experiment too while you are at it?! I can use some help in managing Joe on the rink...LOL.

    Exercise/activity is tough for us to manage. Hockey is always at different times of the day and I am still working on getting it situated. I sometimes have to do as large as an 80% decreased temp basal...AND...feed the little bastard sugar...ARGH!!!

    Keep up the experiments. You are totally right, I feel like a mad scientist ALL THE TIME in trying to tame the "d" beast.

    Have a great day and great post!

  3. Planned exercise is great as it can be controlled exercise. I know how much X minutes of bike riding, trampoline, walking will drop blood sugar. It is the sporadic, unplanned exercise children get that is impossible to factor or softball, soccer, games of that nature. Because activity level is different every time; each game is different.

  4. That's brilliant! I'm totally going to try the running experiment too, I never thought of doing such a thing ... probably has something to do with the fact I suck at math :D


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