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From Chico, California, USA:

I'm a 22 year old woman with Type 1 diabetes. I would like to know how to safely lose 20 pounds. I go to the gym 3-4 times a week and ride a horse 5 times a week.


If you want to lose weight, the best approach is to reduce the fat in your diet, aim for a moderate reduction in calories, and incorporate a regular exercise program into your daily routine. Regular aerobic exercise not only burns calories while you are working out, it also increases your bodies metabolic rate for a period of time afterwards. In other words, even after you have finished your workout, your body is still burning more calories than it would if you had not worked out at all. The number of extra calories burned depends on the intensity of your workout (how hard you worked at working out). It could last 15 minutes or several hours after physical activity. If you do exercises that increase your muscle mass, over time you will be burning more calories with everything you do. Why? Muscle burns more calorie than fat tissue does.

The General Prescription For Weight Loss

  1. Type of exercise: Aerobic (brisk walking, jogging, bike riding, swimming, roller blading etc.)
  2. Frequency: 5 to 6 days a week to maximize the amount of calories expended.
  3. Intensity: Low to moderate 13 to 15 on the RPE scale below.
  4. Duration: 45-60 minutes a session to maximize the amount of calories expended
RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion)

7 Very, very light
9 Very light
11 Fairly light
13 Somewhat hard
15 Hard
17 Very hard
19 Very, very hard

Always start out slow and progress slowly and remember to follow the following guidelines:

  1. Always check your blood glucose before, during and after exercise.
  2. If your blood glucose is less than or equal to 100 mg/dl, eat a snack before exercise.
  3. If your blood glucose is over 100 mg/dl, go ahead an exercise. Keep in mind that you may need a snack during the activity, so make sure you check your blood glucose 30 minutes into the activity, especially if it is your first time engaging in that particular activity.
  4. If your blood glucose is over 250 mg/dl, check for ketones. If ketones are present, do not exercise.
  5. If your blood glucose is over 300 mg/dl, irrespective of ketones, do not exercise.


Original posting 14 Jun 1999
Posted to Exercise and Sports


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:04
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