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Table 5 Graded exercise protocol

From: Exercise to preserve beta cell function in recent-onset type 1 diabetes mellitus (EXTOD) - a study protocol for a pilot randomized controlled trial

Week Total minutes per week Intensity (% VO2max) Heart rate target (bpm)* RPE Borg scale
1 75 55 (220-age × intensity %)a  
2 85 60 Light exercise
3 and 4 100 60  
5 and 6 110 65  
7 115 70 Moderate exercise
8 and 9 115 70  
10 and 11 130 75 Heavy breathing / sweating
12 onwards 150 (minimum) 75  
  1. This exercise program is designed to encourage a gradual increase in physical activity over the course of 12 weeks. The starting point on the scale depends on the individual’s current fitness level.
  2. From 12 weeks onwards, the aim is to achieve a minimum of 150 minutes per week of vigorous-intensity exercise.
  3. RPE Borg Scale: Ratings of Perceived Exertion on a scale of 6 to 20; Heart rate in bpm (beats per minute*), afor example, a 45 year-old man wishing to undertake exercise at 65% intensity would aim for a heart rate of (220 to 245) × 0.65 = 114 bpm [37].