I am new to this forum. I have done a search and have not found an answer to my question so I started a new thread. I am Diabetic and started on an exercise program to lose weight and keep my blood sugar down. I also am on an Atkins type of diet where I only eat meat, fish, eggs, cheese, nuts, seeds, green vegetables, and occasionally some berries. I started exercising a lot about 5 weeks ago and have built up to 5 hours on the tread mill at an average of 3.3 MPH at a 3.5% angle daily along with sit ups, push-ups, and assorted stretches. Based on what I can find online and the information from the treadmill I am burning about 2100 calories a day exercising (I don’t count the other stuff because the calorie expenditure is negligible). I am consuming on average 1600 calories from food, these numbers are from the last two weeks. Other information - I only drink morning coffee and then water the rest of the day, somewhere in between 2 to 3 gallons of water daily. The reason for so much water is that I sweat excessively – within minutes on the tread mill all my clothing is soaking wet and if I do not continually drink while exercising my urine turns a nasty brown color. My blood sugar is completely under control with average readings below 120 and my highest reading in the last 5 weeks was 132 after a meal. I went from defecating once or twice a day to defecating every three days. I am not constipated, I have no problems going at all I just don’t seem to have enough waste to go daily now the amount every time I go now is less than it was daily before. I have tried fiber supplements in the past and they have caused constipation and gas. This seems like a normal function since I am burning more calories than I am consuming but everything I read on the internet says I should go once a day. Does anyone have any experience with the same problem and if so is every three days normal?
One bowel movement every three days is within the range of normal. If you are going without pain or cramping, then it's probably normal for you.
However, I'm concerned by the fact that you are drinking gallons of water and still getting brown urine sometimes. Diabetics are at risk of kidney damage, and Atkins-like diets actually require you to consume toxic quantities of protein, so much protein that it's excreted through the kidneys and can cause permanent harm. When was the last time you had a physical with urine test?
You are on the treadmill for 5 hours at a time? If so that is excessive and unnecessary. I think if you added some complex carbs and fiber to your diet you would poop daily. I also think it would be a much better fuel for your long workouts.
Your water consumption seems excessive too. Your electrolytes must be all out of whack.
I think you may want to re-evaluate your way of eating and scale back the time spent on the treadmill. Believe me there are much more efficient ways to get in shape.
Jane – Thanks for the response and the heads up about the protein. I was worried about the every three day but figured since everything was working okay and I felt great it wasn’t a big issue. Also I do not get the brown urine when I am drinking the 2 – 3 gallons of water a day, I get that when I am doing a lot of exercise (or yard work) and only drink when I get thirsty, since I have upped my water intake my urine is between clear and slightly yellow and I urinate about every two hours. I tracked my actual water consumption yesterday and I drank 1.25 gallons of water during my workouts and 1.1 gallons of water the rest of the day. As far as the protein goes I have updated my spreadsheet that I use to track my calories and carbs to include protein, fats, and sodium. Currently for the month (it would be too much work to update last months spreadsheet) I am averaging 81 grams of protein a day with the high at 99 grams and the low at 60 grams. After looking on the internet and finding that you need .36 grams of protein per pound of body weight and my body weight was 198 this morning I need about 71 grams of protein a day. So I will be leveling out the daily protein and reducing it to the 71 grams. Shouldn’t be a problem, I just need to sub another salad for some meat in my diet. I was really surprised at the amount of sodium that I am consuming, about 3 grams a day; I need to get that down also.
Diamond – thanks for the response. What I posted was somewhat misleading about the time on the treadmill. I do a 4 hour workout in the morning and a 2.5 hour workout at night. During each workout I do an hour on the treadmill then do a set of sit-ups, push-ups, lunges and squats, and then I do another hour on the treadmill. At some point this week I will be adding curls and presses with dumb bells to the workout. The total time on the treadmill is 3 hours in the morning and 2 hours at night. I have been fine tuning this workout since the first of the year and I do not believe that there is a more efficient way for me to lose weight and get into shape. I work from home on my computer and have my treadmill set up with a laptop holder and am able to work the entire time I am on the treadmill so basically I am able to do 6.5 hours of exercise using only an hour and a half of my free time. I have tried bicycling and jogging previously to get into shape but my energy level is the highest during the day and I cannot work while doing those other activities. About the fiber and complex carbs – I am currently consuming about 18 to 20 grams of fiber a day and that and the complex carbs will increase as I get closer to my goal weight. The most important thing for me right now is to keep my blood sugar down and losing weight is the best way for that to happen. Since the first of the year I have been able to reduce my insulin from 40 units a day to 4 units a day and my morning blood sugar has been reduced from an average of 150 to an average of 94.
cmiliaj that is great news about your blood sugar. And my motto is whatever works for you is what you should do. My only concern for you is that you may burn out from doing so much exercise. I understand you want to get that weight off, but it didn't go on fast and its not going to come off fast. And if it does, it will probably come back on. As you get near your goal I hope you are planning to taper back your routine so this can be a lifelong pursuit of fitness and not a means to an end.
Okay, that's a reasonably safe dose of protein. And with all that fiber, it sounds like you are doing the healthy version of low-carb, good for a diabetic, rather than the extreme and dangerous version.
Diamond – Thanks for the words of encouragement and concern. I have had sustainability problems with my workouts in the past and have learned from those mistakes. I would set goals and end up in pain because I would over do things. This time I just started getting on the treadmill at a comfortable speed and walked until I was tired. My goal for today is what ever I did yesterday – makes it easy to exceed my goals LOL. As time progressed I would walk longer and at increased speed. I also started adding in the assorted other exercises one at a time until I am where I am at today. My motto is “No pain is Good!” If anything starts to hurt at all I stop it and try again the next day. My morning exercise does not lower my blood sugar (in fact I average 30 points higher after the workout), since it is so low in the first place and is simply a fat burning workout, so I am starting to add weights to my morning routine and expect when I get closer to my target weight that I will start to lower the time spent on the treadmill in the morning. I doubt that I will be able to reduce the mileage of my night workout since that is the one that lowers my blood sugar.
Jane - Thanks also for your words of encouragement. I cheat on the fiber. I eat a low carb bread that has 12 grams of fiber. Yesterday I got 12 grams from the bread, 4 grams from nuts, less than a gram from a salad, and 8.5 grams from veggies. I just added an extra cup of veggies to my diet yesterday. I have to do things slowly incase it spikes my blood sugar since it takes about 2 to 3 days to level out again when I make big changes. If I am good after a week I’ll add another cup of veggies to my diet.