Breaking down WildFit.

WildFit is over, though a renewed interest in being as healthy as possible in spite of type 2 diabetes is just beginning. As I continue to be inspired by the more serious athletes of Team Wild, the changes coming to the organization in 2012 will make it even better.

What WildFit Did for Me

The biggest accomplishment is that most weeks (10 of 12), I worked out five times per week. I may not have hit the exact workout time that Coach Lynnda Best-Wise set forth each week, but I made a solid effort to go walking, or go to the gym, or get on the balance ball. Exercising five times per week is what has led to weight loss and weight maintenance in the past six years since initial diagnosis, and once again it shows with a 13 pound drop in the twelve weeks of WildFit.

The Plan Going Forward

I am committing to two days a week of workouts on the elliptical, or exercise bike, or treadmill – with a goal of 50 minutes each. Another two days will be spent strength training, which for now will continue to be balance ball workouts utilizing yoga and pilates techniques as well as repetitions with the wimpy dumbbells. (Although I may have to upgrade to a heavier wimpy dumbbell – the three pounders are starting to feel too light!). The last workout of the week will be something outdoors – a long walk, hike, bicycling, or when the weather turns wintry, snowshoeing.

Taking Lynnda’s advice, I will turn one week out of each month into a “rest” week, where I might cut out a strength training workout, or reduce time on the cardio machines. From what I have learned from The Way of the Happy Woman, I may choose to do these “rest” weeks when I am on my period, to give my body the rest it deserves.

Notice what I have not yet mentioned – diet. While I certainly appreciate the efforts of Coach Jennifer Smith with her advice, I felt that it was too directed towards athletes with type 1 diabetes. I simply cannot consume the amount of whole grains she recommended without ending up with high blood sugars – as someone managing type 2 diabetes with diet, exercise, and metformin – even on the toughest workout weeks.

Instead, I am slowly transitioning into what I call a pseudo-Paleo diet, with a little help from a nutritionist friend (more on her to come!). While a traditional Paleo diet does not allow for any whole grains, beans/legumes, or dairy, I am allowing lentils and Greek yogurt. Basically, it revolves around real food like meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, and nuts while using healthy oils such as olive and coconut as well as pastured butter. It is surprisingly easy to cook this way, especially for just one person.

The last diet soda was consumed Friday, and soon I will stop putting Splenda in the only cup of coffee I drink each day. Water is the liquid of choice, with occasional pitchers of iced herbal teas available in the refrigerator. For now, alcohol is being avoided, both to follow traditional Paleo and to account for the new anti-depressant.

Two weeks of eating and drinking this pseudo-Paleo way and I see no impact on ability to exercise to the WildFit level – if anything, I have more stamina and more energy.

Team Wild at the Ironman Wisconsin Triathlon

While WildFit made a huge difference in turning around pessimism about the future by getting me moving again, I have to admit that the TeamWild women preparing for the Ironman Wisconsin next month are that much more inspirational. Training for such an event is grueling for any athlete, but to add type 1 diabetes into the mix makes it that much difficult. While I wish I could cheer them on in person, I will be thinking of these Team Wild athletes on September 11 as they participate in this significant challenge.

Team Wild Going Forward

Recently, Mari Ruddy announced that Team Wild will look and feel a bit differently in 2012. Not only is she including men with diabetes (with an updated acrostic of “We Inspire Life with Diabetes”), but the organization will become one based on membership instead of “teams”.

In the meantime, she is planning another round of WildFit in the fall. I encourage any woman with diabetes looking to either start an exercise program or to take their current program to the next level to consider signing up for this last edition of WildFit.

Posted on August 15, 2011, in Diabetes, Fantastic ideas, Fitness, The Way of the Happy Woman, WildFit. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Scott K. Johnson

    Rachel, you rock. I am so proud of you for constantly working on improving your health.

    I’m very excited about the changed with Team WILD, and look forward to participating!

  2. Scott K. Johnson

    ahem, changes with Team WILD. Changes. :-)


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