‘Your heart is a muscle, which means it becomes more efficient when you work it,’ says Diabetic Living accredited exercise physiologist Christine Armarego. ‘You can help keep it in shape by adding these exercises to your routine.’
Cardiovascular exercise such as walking, swimming or cycling.
Cardio gets your heart beating faster and helps it recover more quickly afterwards. It also improves your lungs’ ability to take in oxygen and distribute it around your body.
Resistance training such as lifting weights and doing push-ups and wall presses.
This improves muscle strength, placing less effort on your heart. Resistance training is also important for managing blood glucose levels and improving bone density.
Think cardio exercise that includes short periods during which you go a little bit harder, such as dancing or tennis. It gets you fitter faster by allowing you to exert yourself, then to recover. If walking is your favourite exercise, regularly walk at a faster pace for 10 to 30 seconds before returning to your normal speed.
Remember: If you haven’t worked out for a while, speak to your GP or diabetes care team first to find which types of exercises are best for you.