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SealGirl
May 17th, 2011, 12:11 AM
I've been reading the forums for awhile now and thought it would be useful to have a thread where people can talk about their experiences of swimming with diabetes.

I was diagnosed with Type II last summer and started Metformin. I've had conflicting advice about diet and have found that what works best for me is low carb. I had been swimming about 1500 meters three or four times a week prior to diagnosis. As I have increased my yardage to 5000 meters five or six times a week, my blood sugar has been easier to manage (down from 196 to 105) without hypoglycemia. I am still learning about supplements.

I am very interested in other people's experiences and that you have found helpful. Thanks!

couldbebetterfly
May 17th, 2011, 02:09 PM
While I have no experience in this, it made me think of Steve Redgrave, the British rower, who won 5 olymic golds, despite his diabetes diagnosis. I saw a documentary on him a few years back - he is such an inspiration! :blah: Anyway - here'e a link to his website, I know you were asking about personal experiences, but thought you might find it interesting :)

http://www.steveredgrave.com/diabetes.html

aquageek
May 17th, 2011, 02:51 PM
He has Type 1, which is much different than Type II. Very inspirational, however.

geochuck
June 6th, 2012, 04:44 PM
I have type two diabetes - I was at the lab the other morning to have a blood test. The lab opens at 7:00 am. I was there about 5 minute before it opened, there was a line up of 4 people ahead of me. Two guys were having an argument about who was there first. The lab technichian came and opend the door. A 75 year old said he was first and a 90 year old said no, I am first. The 75 year old started pushing his way in but the 90 year old grabbed him and started pulling the other guy back. The 90 year wrestled with the younger guy, the younger guy said I was first I sat in my car until opening time so I am going in first.

The lab technician settled the argument and let the 90 year old go first. What a good start to a morning.

bjcarter
June 10th, 2012, 03:53 PM
I was diagnosed two years ago next month with type II. My fasting blood glucose numbers were in the 300s and I had all the hallmark symptoms they warn you to not ignore. While scary at first, it's probably the best thing that ever happened to me. It's changed my life for the better. I've changed my diet completely, I rediscovered exercise and I lost almost 50 pounds. I stayed on Metformin for about six months until my numbers stabilized low. I now hover around 100 (fBG) in the mornings and my HgA1C is at 6 (sometimes lower). I'm fairly strict with my diet although I cheat in small portions occasionally. I try to swim or run most every day and I use guilt to get me through those days in which I'm not terribly motivated. :-) When diagnosed I was 225 pounds. At 6'1" that not terrible but I certainly can see and feel the difference now. Overall I feel better about myself. I just wish I could swim faster!

I certainly owe a lot to Masters swimming, CRUZ masters in particular, for providing me with a pool to swim, people with whom to swim and an incentive to come most every day. I've spoken with a lot of Type 2s out there that struggle to take the first step towards recovery. Squeezing yourself into a speedo when you're 50 pounds overweight isn't easy by any measure (physically or emotionally). At least with Masters, people aren't judgmental about such things. Most everyone has too many things on their mind to care much about your physical appearance!

Anyway, good luck to you. Fixing yourself isn't easy but it's well worth the effort!

Fresnoid
June 10th, 2012, 04:51 PM
Similar story here:

http://www.usms.org/features.php?id=267

SealGirl
June 10th, 2012, 05:17 PM
I have type two diabetes - I was at the lab the other morning to have a blood test. The lab opens at 7:00 am. I was there about 5 minute before it opened, there was a line up of 4 people ahead of me. Two guys were having an argument about who was there first. The lab technichian came and opend the door. A 75 year old said he was first and a 90 year old said no, I am first. The 75 year old started pushing his way in but the 90 year old grabbed him and started pulling the other guy back. The 90 year wrestled with the younger guy, the younger guy said I was first I sat in my car until opening time so I am going in first.

The lab technician settled the argument and let the 90 year old go first. What a good start to a morning.

Hi, George. Thanks for the lab story. I fondly think about slapping on my own tourniquet and taking my own blood sample as I watch the lab move at glacial pace.

You didn't say how you are doing. So, how are you doing? Are you combining diet, exercise and/or meds? Good luck, and thanks for resurrecting the thread.

SealGirl
June 10th, 2012, 05:25 PM
I was diagnosed two years ago next month with type II. My fasting blood glucose numbers were in the 300s and I had all the hallmark symptoms they warn you to not ignore. While scary at first, it's probably the best thing that ever happened to me. It's changed my life for the better. I've changed my diet completely, I rediscovered exercise and I lost almost 50 pounds. I stayed on Metformin for about six months until my numbers stabilized low. I now hover around 100 (fBG) in the mornings and my HgA1C is at 6 (sometimes lower). I'm fairly strict with my diet although I cheat in small portions occasionally. I try to swim or run most every day and I use guilt to get me through those days in which I'm not terribly motivated. :-) When diagnosed I was 225 pounds. At 6'1" that not terrible but I certainly can see and feel the difference now. Overall I feel better about myself. I just wish I could swim faster!

I certainly owe a lot to Masters swimming, CRUZ masters in particular, for providing me with a pool to swim, people with whom to swim and an incentive to come most every day. I've spoken with a lot of Type 2s out there that struggle to take the first step towards recovery. Squeezing yourself into a speedo when you're 50 pounds overweight isn't easy by any measure (physically or emotionally). At least with Masters, people aren't judgmental about such things. Most everyone has too many things on their mind to care much about your physical appearance!

Anyway, good luck to you. Fixing yourself isn't easy but it's well worth the effort!

Way to go BJ! Your story is exactly what I was looking for when I started the thread. After a year my numbers are nearly normal (Hgb A1c 5.9, fBG average 108). I'm still on metformin and still on a low carb diet.

I really agree with you that the diagnosis prompted me to make lifestyle changes that are really good for me. Keep up the good work!

SealGirl
June 10th, 2012, 05:35 PM
Similar story here:

http://www.usms.org/features.php?id=267

Thanks, Keith, for the USMS link to Scott Nichols' story. He reported that his doctor found him to be an anomaly because of 1000 patients he was the only to use exercise as a significant adjunct to treatment. My (first) doctor didn't think exercise would make a significant difference and tried to discourage me from trying! My new doctor was unaware of any evidence that exercise could help but was willing to go slow on starting multiple additional (beyond metformin) medications until I could show her what I could do. I never had to start those other medications. Swimming and low carb have been the keys for me.

geochuck
June 10th, 2012, 09:20 PM
The lab here was great, results were into my doctor two days later. I have an appointment Monday to go over the results. I have not been doing exercise so expect cah cah from the doctor. It is important to exercise to keep blood sugar at bay.
Hi, George. Thanks for the lab story. I fondly think about slapping on my own tourniquet and taking my own blood sample as I watch the lab move at glacial pace.

You didn't say how you are doing. So, how are you doing? Are you combining diet, exercise and/or meds? Good luck, and thanks for resurrecting the thread.

Fresnoid
June 10th, 2012, 09:46 PM
Thanks, Keith, for the USMS link to Scott Nichols' story. He reported that his doctor found him to be an anomaly because of 1000 patients he was the only to use exercise as a significant adjunct to treatment. My (first) doctor didn't think exercise would make a significant difference and tried to discourage me from trying! My new doctor was unaware of any evidence that exercise could help but was willing to go slow on starting multiple additional (beyond metformin) medications until I could show her what I could do. I never had to start those other medications. Swimming and low carb have been the keys for me.

Interesting. My father in law is diabetic and the biggest thing his doctor hassles him about is getting more exercise.

I assumed the anecdote about Scott's Dr. meant Scott was his only patient with the fortitude to change his life and start working out. I'll ask Scott for clarification on that this week.

FYI he's down to 2:45 in the 200 Free and almost broke 30 in the 50 this spring.

geochuck
June 11th, 2012, 10:20 PM
I am now back to a monthly average reading of 8.4 The Doc said get it down to the 6s. She said get back in the pool and swim and do more walking and watch my diet. Weight unchanged at 245lbs. The doc did not change my medication.

SealGirl
June 14th, 2012, 04:33 PM
I am now back to a monthly average reading of 8.4 The Doc said get it down to the 6s. She said get back in the pool and swim and do more walking and watch my diet. Weight unchanged at 245lbs. The doc did not change my medication.

Welll, the good news is you didn't gain weight, right? I know it's possible to get the HgA1c down, even into the 5's. What are you planning to do re diet and exercise? And good luck!

geochuck
June 14th, 2012, 05:09 PM
I have a meet to go to this weekend in Merritt BC, not to swim in. I am setting up a sales stand. I get back on Monday and buying my membership for the gym and pool. $33.00 a month. My wife and I are intent on getting in shape. The only thing that I have to do are weekend sales stands at swim meets til the 3rd weekend in August.

I will follow my diabetic diet given to me through our local health authority.

selkie
June 14th, 2012, 05:19 PM
He's a type 1, but diabetes and swimming made me immediately think of Gary Hall. Jr.

http://www.diabeteshealth.com/read/2004/09/01/3988/gary-hall-jr-/

MartyD43
July 16th, 2012, 11:55 AM
I've been reading the forums for awhile now and thought it would be useful to have a thread where people can talk about their experiences of swimming with diabetes.

I was diagnosed with Type II last summer and started Metformin. I've had conflicting advice about diet and have found that what works best for me is low carb. I had been swimming about 1500 meters three or four times a week prior to diagnosis. As I have increased my yardage to 5000 meters five or six times a week, my blood sugar has been easier to manage (down from 196 to 105) without hypoglycemia. I am still learning about supplements.

I am very interested in other people's experiences and that you have found helpful. Thanks!

- swimming works very well for me, Type II DM diagnosed in 1998, probably started in 1992 with too much work, too much stress from work, and too little fitness practice
- medication from 1999 to 2002, lost enough weight, regained enough fitness to get off medication
- stayed off medication until the end of 2011
- had a VERY bad practice year in 2011 (did not even reach even 50 miles in GTD compared to 150 miles in previous 2 years)
- way too much work and way too much stress from work
- controlled my eating and even reduced BMI, but no exercise and so no success with DM
- back on medications for 2012 and restarted swimming practice (with injury prevention exercises plus some cross training plus work on diet)
- will barely make 50 miled for this year - goal is to work up to 4 practices per week, 2000 yd. more or less per practice
- numbers are already much better: blood glucose, HbgA1c, blood pressure, serum lipids and BMI (slowest to respond)
- can't get off medications now but should be able to get off them by next year if practice is consistent and BMI goes down (estimate need to reduce from current 31.5 down to about 28.5, even lower would be better)

aquageek
July 16th, 2012, 06:16 PM
Welll, the good news is you didn't gain weight, right? I know it's possible to get the HgA1c down, even into the 5's. What are you planning to do re diet and exercise? And good luck!

I think it is important to be realistic. An A1C in the 5s would be fairly unusual. An A1C in the 6's is actually really good, according to our endo.

I know almost nothing about Type II however. We roll Type 1 in our house.

mino
July 18th, 2012, 08:06 PM
Wow... My mother has Type II, maybe I should get her in the pool instead of walking.

SealGirl
August 5th, 2012, 12:47 PM
- swimming works very well for me, Type II DM diagnosed in 1998, probably started in 1992 with too much work, too much stress from work, and too little fitness practice
- medication from 1999 to 2002, lost enough weight, regained enough fitness to get off medication
- stayed off medication until the end of 2011
- had a VERY bad practice year in 2011 (did not even reach even 50 miles in GTD compared to 150 miles in previous 2 years)
- way too much work and way too much stress from work
- controlled my eating and even reduced BMI, but no exercise and so no success with DM
- back on medications for 2012 and restarted swimming practice (with injury prevention exercises plus some cross training plus work on diet)
- will barely make 50 miled for this year - goal is to work up to 4 practices per week, 2000 yd. more or less per practice
- numbers are already much better: blood glucose, HbgA1c, blood pressure, serum lipids and BMI (slowest to respond)
- can't get off medications now but should be able to get off them by next year if practice is consistent and BMI goes down (estimate need to reduce from current 31.5 down to about 28.5, even lower would be better)

Congratulations on resuming your workouts. I find my fasting sugar is best if I work out 4-5 times per week, but I'm more often at 4 than 5. What injury prevention exercises are you doing?

SealGirl
August 5th, 2012, 12:54 PM
I think it is important to be realistic. An A1C in the 5s would be fairly unusual. An A1C in the 6's is actually really good, according to our endo.

I know almost nothing about Type II however. We roll Type 1 in our house.

It may be easier for me as a Type II to lower my glycated hemoglobin. I dropped from 5.9 to 5.3 by doing my best to keep the glycemic load as low as possible. Since JoeBob referred me to it, I have been following the Blood Sugar Solution lifestyle plan, meaning I eat lean protein, LOTS of non-starchy vegetables, and a small amount of fruit. Best of luck to you!

SealGirl
August 5th, 2012, 12:57 PM
Wow... My mother has Type II, maybe I should get her in the pool instead of walking.

Hi, Mino. I think walking is great, too, especially for people who don't like to get wet! Tell your Mom about Mark Hyman's Blood Sugar Solution. It helped me enormously with lots of encouragement and a plan that really works!

wwoelbel
August 6th, 2012, 02:13 PM
Hi there,

My story is not nearly are smart as some of the others but thought I would share. In February my Doc gave me a glucose meter with instructions to stab myself twice daily. I was told that I would be (probably) put on diabetes meds to go along with my cholesterol and blood pressure meds. I weighed 260 lbs and had a 48 inch waist. My BMI was in the OMG range. At the time my exercise regime consisted of logging into World of Warcraft and killing fantasy monsters 3-6 hours a night and killing multiple bags of doritos. The glucose meter was the wakeup. I hate needles! I joined MyFitnessPal.com and put myself on a "lose 1 pound per week" diet and started doing some aerobics at the university gym. After 3 months and a return to the MD, I was told to keep using the meter every three days and no additional meds. I then joined Masters Swimming. After three months of that, we got to toss the meter and we have reduced my blood pressure meds by 2/3. I currently weigh 210 with a 37 inch waist. My goal is to eliminate all of my meds by Jan 1st (and be 180/34). For me, exercise is key and Masters Swimming provides the support, challenge, and motivation to make it happen.

Bill

FR.LLC
August 8th, 2012, 09:59 PM
He's a type 1, but diabetes and swimming made me immediately think of Gary Hall. Jr.

http://www.diabeteshealth.com/read/2004/09/01/3988/gary-hall-jr-/

Gary Hall Jr. works with Diabetes Research Foundation in a big way. If any of you would like to read a story where he touches on his swimming and diabetes we have one in FitnessDigest.us ISSN 2164-3997 Vol. 4.2, which happens to be the free-edition until November. I can send it to anyone who wants to read it. The magazine is delivered quarterly so I can not link to it. All I need to know is where to send it. email info@FitnessDigest.us put Free Edition Vol. 4.2 in the subject line - or sign-up at http://coopnet.biz

vecher
February 10th, 2014, 01:16 AM
I'm the same with Bill. I used to addicted to WoW (http://www.wowgold2k.com), played day and night and always ate fast food with out physical exercise. Then diabetes came and I realized I should do something. So I go swimming everyday now.

secondheart
February 10th, 2014, 11:20 AM
I've been reading the forums for awhile now and thought it would be useful to have a thread where people can talk about their experiences of swimming with diabetes.

I was diagnosed with Type II last summer and started Metformin. I've had conflicting advice about diet and have found that what works best for me is low carb. I had been swimming about 1500 meters three or four times a week prior to diagnosis. As I have increased my yardage to 5000 meters five or six times a week, my blood sugar has been easier to manage (down from 196 to 105) without hypoglycemia. I am still learning about supplements.

I am very interested in other people's experiences and that you have found helpful. Thanks!

Had an operation in 2008 and was put on prandin as one of my medications, a second operation in 2009 and was switched to Metformin to control my blood sugar. Started back swimming in 2011 (regular week 3x3000, 2x4500 mainly timed sets). In 2012 I stopped taking Metformin for a month and took the A1C test, the results were fine and I no longer take any diabetes medicines (daily count 80-110 after stopping). Don't know if I am an unusual case?

skiboy58
May 25th, 2017, 11:39 PM
I've got Type-II diabetes. My hemoglobin A1C was 6.7 in 2011 and I had two other readings of 6.5. I weighed 232. I swam as a youth and decided to go back to it, since I hate running. I started with just about a half a mile a few times a week. In the last 2-3 years, I have increased my yardage to 2-3 thousand three times a week, sometimes four. I don't do super long distances, but I tend to do sprint workouts with a lot of near race-paced sets. My last three A1C readings were totally in the normal range (between 5.2 and 5.5) and I now weigh 193 with 14% body fat. Recently, I had a neck injury (old disc herniation that flared up) and didn't swim for six weeks. I had a MUCH harder time controlling my sugar, and was even getting some readings over 200 and morning sugars of 125-135. Once back in the pool, my morning readings are back in the very low 100s or even mid to high 90s.

I presently take metformin 500-1000 per day (extended release)
I also take:
Losartan (blood pressure, but also protective of kidneys against damage from diabetes)
Pravastatin (same idea...don't really have high cholesterol, but it's the standard of practice)
Chromium picolinate
Cinnamon extract
Alpha-lipoic acid
a bunch of other supplements, like Co-Enzyme Q10, a multi, etc.