Running and Diabetes or Butter II 5

This post is about running with diabetes… with butter as my only fuel.

Steve Note: I do believe that running long distances is inflammatory FOR ME.  I do like to run longer distances occasionally … just to see if I can still do it. :)   What is a long run for me… may be different for YOU.

I prefer running sprints … but for longer runs 3-4 miles is a nice distance. I can run these and feel no major inflammation of joints, muscles etc.

The other day I ended my “butter experiment”… you can read about it by clicking here, “Butter a day … keeps diabetes at bay?” The experiment culminated with a stick of butter for breakfast on the 5th day.

Around noon, without consuming any other nutrients (I did drink black coffee and drank water) I decided to add to my dietary experiment by attempting a long distance run.  Below is a picture along my running route… a quaint old church…

Below is my Pre-Run Blood Glucose Reading … it is also one hour post ‘break-fast” … which was a 1/4 lb of butter. :))

The attempt to run a long distance was a 4-fold ‘experiment’.

1) Butter (saturated fat) is Good Fuel: I wanted to show that I could run a longer run … with nothing but butter (animal fats) for energy. I used the word ‘show’ instead of ‘prove’ on purpose. You see, I knew that I could do a longer run… because I’d done longer runs while intermittent fasting, (click here for more info).

2) Knee Test: I had not run distance on pavement in shoes in about four months, since the completion of the 100 miles in 30 day Challenge in October ’10. I accomplished the goal ahead of schedule but on the last day … I re-injured a torn meniscus in my right knee.  I had been doing sprints and plyometrics prior to this long run.

Keep in mind… I’ve been running 100 yd sprints, barefoot and on grass every week that I can. I’ve probably averaged running sprints once every two weeks.  I also perform plyometrics each week, a high intense cardio workout… FOR SURE!

3) High Intense Cardio – proponents suggest that high intense cardio is great training for long distance running. While I had tested this out before and new that I could do at least 4-5 miles I wanted to see how far I could go…. without pushing myself TOO much. (I usually try to push myself… but not dangerously).

4) Testing the Run’s Affect on Blood Sugar  – as you can see from my picture below… my blood sugar definitely decreased during the run. A post run 68 is the lowest blood sugar reading I think I’ve ever had.  EXERCISE ROCKS! :)

The Running


I try to run sprints every week but I probably average running sprints once ever two weeks during the winter months. I have run sprints in temperatures below 40 degrees but it must be sunny…. I only run sprints barefooted and in shorts. I prefer to run shirtless but I have worn a sweat shirt a couple of times due to cold weather.  If the weather does not permit… I perform plyometrics at home. The purpose (for me) is to achieve 80-90% of maximum heart rate…. this is ‘the zone’ where maximum cardiovascular benefit is achieved.

Long Distance

On this day I decided to just see what I could do. NOW … keep in mind… I still was running sprints and if not I was still doing plyometrics 2-3 times per week. On off days I was doing weight resistance of some sort… so my ‘heart’ and cardiovascular system was kept in good shape.

I ended up running 7.14 miles in 1 hr and 39 mins…. the pace was 13.51 … not bad for an old diabetic, after a long hiatus. Honestly though… my goal was 10 miles with a minimum of 8 miles for the day. Let me tell you what I did… I ran 5 miles ‘out’…. with the intention of running 5 miles back. Since I ran only 7 … I had a LONG two mile walk home. (I took shortcuts)  I call it the ‘Walk of Shame”. Now deep down, I know the 7 miles was great or very good… but I will use this as incentive to push myself the next time out. :)


1) Butter for fuel test? … check! Worked like a CHARM!

2) Knee Test? Check! … running sprints and jumping up and down barefooted … certainly did NOT harm my knee. :)

3) High Intense Cardio? I have to say… check!  Not to make excuses… but I live in a very hilly neighborhood. I was fine running on flat ground… but at exactly the 7.14 mile mark… was the BASE of a very big and steep hill.

The main reason I stopped running wasn’t a lack of energy nor “wind” … it was pain. My feet, hips and back really began to cause me pain. (and I hate to COMPLAIN!!!!)  :)

4) Running and Blood Sugar Affect : We know that walking is good for helping to control blood sugar… and at least for me, on this day… RUNNING was as well. Running reduced my Blood Sugar @ 16 points.

** While I was running back to the home… my feet started hurting BAD!!! … when I came to this part of the run…. I soooo wanted to take my shoes off and run barefooted… but I was afraid of glass etc. :)



Here is my Diabetes Warrior Info:

My Diabetes Meal Plan ( a true diabetes diet, not like most of those promoted by American Diabetes Association)

How I Play

5 thoughts on “Running and Diabetes or Butter II

  • Mary Titus

    Excellent experiment Steve, even if I do say so myself. I see that you used organic butter. Have you ever used raw organic butter. I ask because I suspect that the stomach issues would be non-existant since the raw butter should be in itself, a probiotic. Just wanted to put that out there. Also, how did you feel physically with a glucose reading of 68? Did you feel light-headed. Of course I ask because 70 – 100 is considered normal. In other words did you feel hypoglycemic at 68 or did you feel perfectly fine?

    Thanks Cavey

  • Steve Cooksey

    Great question/comment Mary… thanks!

    I have not used raw organic butter… but that sounds most excellent! I’m trying to find a ‘all grass fed’ raw milk. If I find it, I’ll see if they have the butter and cheese. :)

    68? Not a problem…. at all. I did not feel ‘low’… and given the variances of the meters… I was not concerned about it. I would not be concerned unless I ‘read’ in the lower 60’s.

    Note: I actually walked a couple of miles back home after I stopped running so…

    This is not a true reading immediately ‘post run’. It was likely close to an hour post run.

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