The 3R’s of Type 2 Diabetes Group Program

The 3R’s of Type 2 Diabetes Group Program

Coming back by popular demand! We are currently organising the start of a new round of Diabetes Group classes that will now run under our 3R’s Banner – Re-educate, Restore and Reclaim.

Diabetes does not have to define you or be the centre of your world. Come and learn some background about the condition and why it does what it does. Learn ways to take back control of your life and be happier and healthier, despite Diabetes.

Group classes are a great way to do this. You will learn useful knowledge and skills, you will meet other people who share a similar journey, there will be exercise, laughter and community.

The program will consist of 2 individual assessments – one before you begin and another after you have finished, and 8 group sessions made up of 1 hour of exercise and 30 minutes of education. There will be handouts to take home, a home-based exercise program for you to do at home and feedback to your doctor.

You will require a Medicare Group Allied Health referral from your doctor to join this program.

We are in the process of organising a new location to run these groups. It’s not finalised yet and so we will do an update here when it is, but at this stage it looks like we will have a great gym, easy, relatively flat access and free parking on site. More to follow.

Written by Marlene

Why should I exercise – What’s in it for me?

Why should I exercise – What’s in it for me?

A question I am asked less frequently, but still far too often. Most people know that they should be exercising regularly, but here are some very good reasons why we should, and the reality is, that it doesn’t take very much exercise to make a real difference and for this journal entry, I am just going to list seven important benefits of exercise.

  1. Living longer with a better quality of life. According to the World Health Organization, a sedentary lifestyle is one of the 10 leading causes of early death.
  2. Prevent falls—reduce the risk of hip fracture by 40%.
  3. Reduce the risk of stroke or heart-attack.
  4. Better bone density.
  5. Reduced risk of developing dementia.
  6. Prevent or delay disease such as diabetes, arthritis and heart disease.
  7. Increase confidence and independence by improving balance.

I am sure that you will agree, these are important reasons to get a bit of exercise daily as we move along the lifespan.

Written by Marlene

Something is always better than nothing

The Active Effect

Taking that first step in starting to exercise again, is often the biggest. Not knowing where to start is a regular confession. Maybe this will help.

If it has been a while since you were active, or if you are recovering from an illness, the first step to starting exercise should be checking in with your GP to make sure it is safe for you to exercise. Your GP may give you some advice about what to do for exercise, or they may refer you to an Exercise Physiologist.

Once you know you are safe to start, and if you are not seeing an Exercise Physiologist (which Inaturally would prefer), then a good place to start, if you are able, is walking. Hippocrates, who is credited with being the ‘Father of Western Medicine”, said “Walking is man’s best medicine”, and the evidence that this is true grows by the year.

10 minutes of walking at a brisk enough pace to increase your breathing rate is enough to start making improvements to health. How fast is brisk? Well, that is very individual. Some people will have to walk more quickly than others to raise their breathing rate and others, say those who suffer from breathlessness, may not have to walk very fast at all. Basically, what we are looking for, is that as you walk along you are breathing more frequently than if you were sitting watching TV, but not so hard that you couldn’t keep up your end of a conversation – you shouldn’t go so hard that you can only get out a word or two between gasps of breath.

It is best to stick to a flat, even walking surface to begin with. If you use a wheeled walker, make sure you use it when walking for exercise as well. If you lack the confidence to go out and walk, then begin with walking at home, up and down the hallway or driveway, or around the lawn or the lounge room. If you can’t walk for 10 minutes without stopping, then stop and rest as often as you need to and make walking for 10 minutes without stopping your first goal. But be a little gentle with yourself and don’t push yourself so hard that you fall or injury yourself.

Building the confidence to walk outside of home often takes some time if you have been sedentary for a while. Once you have been walking at home for a while you might enlist the help of a family member or friend to take a short walk down the street – but only if it is flat and even there. If where you live is steep and/or uneven under foot, the safest thing is to get in the car and go somewhere where it is safer for you to walk – for example Inveresk, Heritage Forest, the Tailrace (if you are in Launceston). Once you have a starting point, walk for 5 minutes and then turn around and walk back – it’s as simple as that.

Next time I will look at taking the next step in reclaiming your life with exercise.

Written by Marlene