Why Am I High After Exercise?

heart exercise smaller

So, here I am increasing my exercise.  The heart gets to pumping.  The body is under stress.  Sugar is being released into the blood stream.  It’s all supposed to be good for me, right?  My blood sugar is supposed to decrease as a result.  I mean, that is the reason I am doing more – so I don’t have to take meds.  Otherwise, I could just take my walks, watch what I eat and take meds.  But, no, my doctor has to go and tell me that we need to consider taking me off of meds, so that means I have to use the insulin my body produces more efficiently, which means that I need to exercise more…or more ‘vigorously.’

Okay, I have already written about that a couple of times. But, what I wasn’t ready for were the high numbers an hour or two after I finish exercising.  Yesterday evening I took my glucose reading three hours after eating and about 90 minutes after exercising.  147!  High.  High.  High.  I knew sugar was released into the blood when exercising, but 147?  Really?  Just how long does it take to go down?

Well, it turns out it takes several hours.  Several – which means anywhere from three to four+ hours.  There is not set time because we are all different.

A second cause of the rise in BG during and after physical activity is highly vigorous exercise. The more intense exercise is, the greater the secretion of glucose from the liver. During the strenuous session, stress hormones will be secreted in large quantities which will then stimulate the liver to release glucose. This is an interesting paradox: the more vigorous the exercise the more glucose released by the liver with a likely rise in BG rather than a fall. To make matters worse, the level of stress hormones in the blood may be elevated for several hours after intense exercise causing the liver to continue the outpouring of sugar. Thus, the rise in BG may last for a number of hours once the exercise is completed. Additional BG monitoring may be needed until the values have stabilized.  Read the entire article from Diabetes Health.

So, what I experienced was normal.  I know there are those of you who have dinner and then go for some sort of exercise – spinning, dance, resistance training, or what your exercise of choice is – and then take your glucose reading 90 minutes or two hours later.  And, you get a higher reading.  Guess what?  It’s normal.

Isn’t that great news!

As always, thank you for reading.

“Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.”  Henry David Thoreau



I am not a doctor or health professional. I am just a guy who is working everyday to control Type 2 Diabetes. My goal is to offer hope, help and solutions for day-to-day living for the diabetic. The disease can be controlled. It can be managed. And, you can do it!

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Posted in Exercise & Diet
2 comments on “Why Am I High After Exercise?
  1. Mommabetic says:

    I also did a post on this a month or two back! I was really surprised by my numbers as well and did some research. http://mommabetic.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/exercise-and-glucose-levels-some-damn-answers/
    There’s the post, if anyone is interested!

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