First Walk / Jog

Baby steps…. So, the latest ECG and Echocardiogram show some small improvements.

Improvements

My Ejection Fraction has risen slightly from around 40-45% to around 50%. That’s going in the right direction and might continue to improve over the coming months.

The ECG does show pathologic Q-waves which indicate permanent damage to my cardiac tissue. This was somewhat expected and the fact that they are still there now almost 6 weeks after my heart attack means they aren’t going away – hence the ‘permanent’ nature of the damage.

Recovery and Rehab

I think the doctors are fairly happy with my progress. Rest and recovery is still the primary objective but I think the majority of that should have taken place by now so it is time to start rehab exercises to start strengthening things again. I think it takes a little longer for the stents to become properly embedded into my arterial tissue so I still have to avoid anything strenuous.

This means I start weekly cardiac rehab sessions next week. This is classed as Phase 3 of my ‘journey’. Phase 1 was while I was in hospital. Phase 2 was the 6 weeks of recovery I’ve just been through. Phase 3 will be the guided rehab and phase 4 will be continued unguided rehab afterwards.

Cardiac Rehab Phases

Exercise

I was also given the go ahead to add some more activities to my daily ‘exercise’. These are in the form of very gentle, very short, jogging intervals into my daily runs and some very low intensity turbo trainer sessions.

I did the first of these today by adding 9x 30sec jogs into a short walk. In some ways the stats are impressive. Not impressive from a speed or distance perspective, but impressive from the level of restraint I showed. Each ‘interval’ was only 30 seconds. Each interval was at a slow jogging pace (8:00 – 9:00 mins/mile) and each was separated by a minute of walking recovery.

Morning Walk / Jog

The good news is that there was no additional chest pain. The underlying discomfort was still there but it didn’t get any worse. I did feel a little more short of breath after the first interval than I’d expected but it was OK after that. My legs did feel a little weak and there were a few shooting pains in them too but nothing major.

My heart responded as expected too. My heart rate increased nicely with each interval and more importantly recovered back to where it was on each of the recovery intervals. I wasn’t pushing it so my heart rate never really got into a training zone but it is at least a start. My heart rate will be throttled somewhat by both the heart damage and the medication I’m on too. I guess I’ll have to find out what it is actually capable of now during the cardiac rehab sessions of the coming weeks.

Heart Rate Response

It was barely an exercise session really but it is at least a start. Hopefully it won’t wipe me out too much but I’ll probably find that I’m more tired than usual this afternoon!

3 Responses

  1. Avatar forComment Author Anonymous says:

    Perfect intervals! Lovely hr recoveries too. Listen to your body not your mind…

  2. Avatar forComment Author Mum x says:

    Sounds as if you’re on the right road to recovery. No doubt that’s more than I can do x

  3. Avatar forComment Author Liz says:

    Good to see you recovering Alan.
    Your garden looks fab and loving the bees.
    I am in awe of your restraint and patient recovery and hope you’re allowed back in the water soon.
    Take it easy..

    Liz x
    (we met at the N Wales Quad camp 2019)

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Alan Cole

Alan is a Freelance Website Designer, Sports & Exercise Science Lab Technician and full time Dad & husband with far too many hobbies: Triathlete, Swimming, Cycling, Running, MTBing, Surfing, Windsurfing, SUPing, Gardening, Photography.... The list goes on.