To Someone Important To Me Who Had A Heart Attack – On Cardiac Rehab
Some words of advice about Cardiac Rehab. I’ve been involved with for a year now. Most people drop out. In fact maybe 80-90% never finish the program. Some that do come week after week and never do anything, they read magazines or sit on one of the machines and yak. The nurses tell me they only show up because a spouse or daughter in harassing them to go, maybe even driving them. Others however do go through it all the way and discover a different life, even different friends they enjoy.
But you’ve got to let the fear go. When I first showed up at the Cardiac Lab I was terrified, of the treadmill the bike, the weight machines, everything. I felt so weak. Especially when I had to watch sweet young things in in pony tails in their twenties running like a deer on the treadmill or muscle bound young guys swinging the free weights around like feather dusters.
What you have to understand is that the nurses and trainers are prepared for people coming to them in horrible shape, in pain after operations or psychologically resigned. That’s their mission in life, one to evaluate you and two to get you started on a healthy curing regimen of exercise. Baby, baby steps, then as the weeks progress stronger and stronger steps. They watch you on heart monitors, check your blood pressure frequently, your blood sugar and weight – they’re all about watching out for you. And they’re always encouraging. In the twelve months I’ve been in the Cardiac gym, first as a monitored patient and then after I graduated as a paying member I’ve never heard staff criticize anyone for any exercise routine or level. I never heard another patient or member criticize anybody either.
But I’ve heard a lot of kidding back and forth, laughing and cheers.
Stay with it and you will find yourself joining in the fun.
Lots of days you won’t feel like doing it. Just this past Monday I really had to drag myself, I was cranky, sour and out of sorts. But when I began on my first station the juices started to flow and I felt like I was returning home after a trip away. That’s the way it is. I even trick my lazy self from time to time. I say to hell with it I’ll just be a Gerbil today and coast, then once I’m in the gym I meander over to the first machine and tell myself – “okay lardass just five minutes then you’re going home” and then magically it’s somehow an hour and a half later and I’m doing the closing stretches.
Just put one foot in front of the other every day and you’ll succeed.
You owe it to us guys who love you and want to see you around a lot longer.
So you can encourage us.
Richard F. Miniter is the author of The Things I Want Most, Random House, BDD, Five Stars on Amazon “The remarkable story of a couple who risked everything …” Easily one of the most compelling reads you will ever experience See it Here.