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View Diary: What really saved my life last month (130 comments)

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  •  I (7+ / 0-)

    was in insane shape for decades. Body fat below 5%, at one point when I was climbing 24/7, trying to get as light as possible I weighed 125 and could do 10 pull ups with either arm by itself.

    A few years ago, starting around 2004 - 2005 I got out of shape, topped out near 200 lbs and I'm only 5'8".

    Then about a year and a half ago I broke my back wakeboarding and decided that was enough, I needed and wanted to be in shape. I started working out about a year ago, by the time of the attack I could comfortably jog 3 miles and had lost about 25 lbs, sitll overweight at 175 but not terrible. I ran ten miles one day just to see if I could do it -- it's not something I would recommend on a regular basis for someone my/our ages, I could feel it in my knees and ankles for days afterward.

    I had no way to know, but the blockage[s] was almost certainly significant all through that latter regimen. I ran over a mile while I was having the first episode like a dumbass, trying to shrug off the weird feeling. In retrospect, it was almost like I was training to survive a heart attack.

    •  OK, that changes the picture entirely (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DarkSyde, Bridge Master

      First, 2004-2005 is not recent. That's almost a decade ago. You'll lose most of the cardiovascular benefits you've accrued from exercise after about a year of sedentary non-activity.

      Second, 5'8 and 200 pounds is not a "little bit" overweight. On the BMI scale, that pushes you just into obesity.

      Look, I don't want this to sound like I am attacking you. But this diary is written in a way that implies a heart attack can happen regardless of your level of fitness. That you are this ultra fit man who just happened to draw crappy genetic lottery numbers and that is the reason for your misfortune.

      Where instead, the more accurate description would be someone who was once in great shape, but more recently had been sedentary for nearly a decade and had fluctuated between obesity and being overweight.

      You've written this diary in a way that is scary to someone like myself. Because I am still in phenomenal shape. I do still have a body fat percentage that is 5%. I do run 7.5 miles every day. But I am approaching my mid-30's and I do have a familial history of heart attacks. So here I read this diary and I start to think, maybe all my hard work doesn't matter because, wow, this guy was in great shape and it still happened to him.

      But that's not really the story here at all. The story is much more typical. You're just presenting it in a way that glosses over, and at times misrepresents, many of the most important facts. The coup de grâce being the accompanying picture that shows a fit and viral man, but looks to be from the 1980's. You obviously haven't looked like that in a long time!

      You should have presented a more accurate picture. Instead, you've succeeded in scaring people like myself and possibly misleading others who are less fit into thinking exercise may not matter that much. That's wrong.

      •  I'm (5+ / 0-)

        sorry if I was unclear or frightened you, I should have been more thorough. It's more involved than in shape at one point and out the next.

        Here's the timeline: I started getting out of shape in 2005, by about 2007 I was at 175 lbs. Then I got back into some shape for about a year, but I didn't stick with it. Got back to about 180 lbs pretty quick by 2009 -- it seemed way easier to gain it that second time btw, probably an age thing plus I was happy as a clam in domestic bliss.

        In 2010 I started working out again for a few months and lost about 15 lbs, but again like a dumbass I didn't stick with it and started gaining again. Then I broke my back about a year and a half ago, that's when I topped out at 200 lbs, during the fall of 2011. After getting the OK from the back injury docs I decided I would never get out of shape again -- that injury probably wouldn't have happened if I had been in shape.

        It took me almost a year to lose 25 lbs, to get back to 175, that's where I was last month when all this happened. Part of that regimen included lots of running and ellipticals and stair steppers. Depending on the workout I would usually warm up by running a mile and then lift weights, or if it was a cardio day I'd run three to five miles and do some other aerobic stuff like FX's and stair steppers.

        If you are in your mid 30s, running 10 clicks every day, have super low body fat, and have no symptoms, have no history of heart trouble, there's not much reason to worry that you are at risk for a heart attack. It happens to young poeple sometimes, but statistically you're probablt more likely to get killed in a car wreck than you are to suffer a massive heart attack. If it's messing with your mind -- which is way more common than people realize -- get it checked out. My guess is the cardiologists will do an echo, put you on a treadmill, see your results, and assure you there is nothing to worry about.

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