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Heart problems and exercise
Dylbertm92 posted:
Hi, I'm 17 and I have Aortic and Pulmonary Stenosis. I had my first surgery when I was 8 which was the Ross procedure and my second one a little over a year ago where I had to have my pulmonary valve replaced. Before my old Cardiologist left for another job, we had a discussion about lifting weights, I don't bench press, I just use dumbbells which are really light, I have a set of 10 pound ones that I use most of the time, and a set of 20 pound ones that see very little use. Before my Cardiologist left he told me that using those dumbbells, he just told me I couldn't do a lot of weight or bench press because that would put a lot of stress on my heart. Ok now I'll get to the point, sorry about all of that. My parents think it's not ok for me to use my weights, even after what my Cardiologist said, I was wondering if I could get anymore feedback on this? Also I don't do very many reps 2 sets of 10-12 at the most 3 sets so it's not like I'm putting a ton of stress on myself and I rest between a minute or two between sets. I also know I need to do more cardio exercises my Cardiologist has been telling me that for however long it's just really hard for me to keep myself doing them, does anyone have any suggestions about that too?
DeadManWalking56 responded:
10 lb and 20 lb only is inadequate. You need to be able to make about 5% increments. Look into more dumbbells, and perhaps some platemates. Slow down on the sets, max at 2, lift slow, lower slower, as that will also help with strength.

With heart disease, no strain is important. Large weight increments will cause strain.

Why is the cardio hard ? Boring, or tiring ? If boring, do something different, or watch TV during it. If too difficult, back off since to are trying to hard. You will slowly get stronger, and be able to do more.

Its no fun to get weaker. You can use weights IF you'll not strain at all. That means sets of 12-15 or even 20, and you DO NOT train to failure. That ups your blood pressure too much.
Dylbertm92 responded:
Cardio is hard for me because it is very boring to me. and I know I need to slow down on the sets and maxing and my weights and everything, and I know that it can up my blood pressure a lot too which can lead to a lot of bad things, I really appreciate the help I'm glad you could help me with weight increments and the reps and everything. I don't plan on using large weights ever I just want to stay in shape and be able to keep doing the activities I do.

Sorry if this doesn't make much sense I just working 7 hours after school and now I'm working on a school video project so I'm kind of exhausted.
Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
Try some different cardio until you find the one you like. Roller skating, swimming, some of the Wii Fit games, DDR, hiking, ice hockey, roller blading, dancing at a club or at home to some fast music, hacky sack, skipping (always fun in the mall, grocery store or just down the side walk), jump rope.
DeadManWalking56 responded:
Cardio is by nature tedious, but it is the best thing for your heart and enables you to do so many more things.

Try bench/chair step-ups while watching TV. Tough workout for 45 minutes. Maybe with weights.
redwingfan responded:
Cardio doesn't have to be tedious. For myself and most of the people I know, we have all found a form of cardio that we enjoy. Certainly cardio can be tough but it can also be fun. My form of cardio is running and while not for all, it is something I love to do! There are so many different ways to get your cardio, you just have to try them all and without a doubt you will find one or two that you like
DeadManWalking56 responded:

Play hockey, play basketball, just shoot baskets. Jump rope. If you measure your heart rate, you know if you are active enough.

I discovered the only way I can get a good maximal workout is shooting baskets in my driveway and chasing down the basketball, and I don't even feel the workout. But my heart rate gets up and stays up.

Winter, I do bench step-ups, use an exercycle or treadmill while watching basketball games, or use a rowing machine. I wish I could row on the water, but that takes far more time, and would be limited to weekends only.
R_Weil responded:
Hi Dylbertm92,

You ought to find a new cardiologist for a consultation and ask for specifics. It?s not enough to simply tell you not to do a lot of weight. Advice needs to be more specific so you are sure of what you?re doing. Go ahead and ask your primary doctor for a referral. And if the cardiologist cannot teach you specifics, then ask for a referral to physical therapy so that you and your parents know you?re doing it safely. As for cardio, listen to music or watch a DVD when you do it. It can be boring but if you distract yourself it makes it more interesting. Set up a plan for 3-4 days a week to start. You can combine it with lifting if the doctor allows, so you could do 15 minutes of cardio to start, and then 15-20 minutes of lifting, and build up from there. Go ahead and get an appointment with your doctor.

Take care, Rich
DeadManWalking56 responded:
My cardiologist explained that blood pressure goes up with heart rate during exercise. So even lifting weights, a heart patient should monitor their heart rate, and not exceed the number they use as a guide during aerobic exercise.

Lifting heavy weights can push blood pressure fast, and some people hold their breath, really spiking blood pressure. Most heart patients have less than normal vessel flexibility, so their vessels are more subject to ectasia, long stretched sections, and aneurysms. Blood flows slower in those, and the stretched areas are likely places for blockages to begin, or the stretched walls to rupture.

Weight training is good for heart patients, but is more limited than many people want.

Cardiac rehab for CAD patients is by necessity conservative. Advice to do something that my injure someone and lead to a lawsuit will just not be advised.

If someone would rather die than follow guidelines, the cardiac rehab people will ask you to go injure yourself somewhere else. They are there to guide prudently, not push limits recklessly.
DeadManWalking56 responded:
I do my cardio first, then do some lifting after a 5 minute rest, after my cooldown from cardio.

My own guideline heart rate is 130-140 beats a minute as maximum when lifting, So I don't lift heavy. But the weights I do lift does slowly increase, just not the difficulty. I also only step up about 5% as I increase the weight I use.
An_249565 replied to Louise_WebMD_Staff's response:
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Laricsports replied to Louise_WebMD_Staff's response:
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