Insulin is one of your body’s most critical hormones, and improving your sensitivity to insulin will ultimately help you AVOID storing carbs as fat (and instead shuttle those carbs to your muscles to be used as energy).
One “tried and true” way to improve your insulin sensitivity and carbohydrate tolerance is to participate in high-intensity resistance training, but done at a high volume as well.
Numerous studies have shown that this particular type of training can have a profound impact on insulin sensitivity.
These strength training workouts deplete stored carbohydrates in muscle tissue (known as glycogen), and increase insulin sensitivity and glucose uptake in muscle to replenish these depleted energy stores.
One particular study executed by Dr. Laurie Black of Arizona State University and published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, found that multiple sets of 6 to 8 repetitions per body part performed with a heavy load were able to significantly improve insulin sensitivity and fasting blood glucose levels in 17 pre-diabetic test subjects.
Another example you can use to create the same exact effect is a tried and true protocol called German Volume training. The chart below shows an example using triple sets, which is simply three exercises performed, back-to-back, with little to no rest.
So you would perform 10 reps of pull-ups or variation, no rest, move immediately to 10 reps of pushups or variation, no rest, move immediately to 10 reps of bodyweight squat or variation. Rest 60 seconds and repeat 9 more rounds for a total of 10 sets
of 10 reps for all three exercises.
You’ll notice you can increase the intensity by shortening up the rest periods to 30 seconds or less on your last 3 or 4 rounds (shown in the rest column below on exercise #3) German Volume Training Protocol to Increase Insulin Sensitivity:
While the findings of this protocol are extremely promising, they are dependent upon performing bodybuilding style workouts with heavy loads for 45 to 60 minutes daily, which we understand may not be practical or even desirable for many people.
That said, if the above exercise trick sounds too hard or too time-consuming for you, don’t worry, there’s a much EASIER way to improve your insulin sensitivity and it only takes a few short seconds to execute each day.