Oct 10

Life is catching up with me.

Many of my friends who follow me on Facebook are probably wondering, “What the heck is going on with Bert? Why is he all of a sudden exercising so much?”.

Well I will tell you.  My brother and his husband came to visit about two months ago and about half way through their visit I started getting chest pains and a pain going down my left arm which felt like someone sticking a knife in it. So I did what most typical men do and ignored it for a few weeks.  One morning during breakfast the pain was really bad so I went to the emergency room.  I spent about four hours in the ER and they did an EKG, chest x-ray, and took blood.  Everything looked normal so they released me and told me to make an appointment with cardiology.

So I waited about another two weeks because I was sure the pain would just go away on its own. Of course it didn’t so I called for an appointment with cardiology.  After my initial exam the doctor scheduled me for an Echocardiogram and Computed Tomography Angiogram (CTA).

So to make a long story shout the results came back and it shows that I have Coronary Artery Disease or CAD.

This means I need to make some drastic lifestyle changes if I want to lower my risk of heart attack.

So in the last few weeks I have made a lot of changes in my life.

  1. I quit smoking…COLD TURKEY.  Smoking is probably the #1 cause of CAD.
  2. I have changed my diet. This is a permanent change to reduce calories and fat.
  3. I have started a daily exercise routine.

In order to track my progress I am using three programs.

  1. Fitbit Charge HR which tracks my steps, heart rate, sleep, calories burned, etc.  What is amazing is I started using the fitbit on 20 September which is two days after I quit smoking and started exercising.  My resting heart rate then was 78 Beats Per Minute (BPM). Today my resting heart rate is 68 BPM!!  10 beats a minutes less!!  This means my heart is working a lot less to provide my body with the needed oxygenated blood.
  2. MapMyFitness which is an App I use to record all my workouts.  It contains all sorts of workouts and also tells how many calories I burn during a certain activity
  3. MyFitnessPal which is an App I use on my smart phone to track EVERYTHING I eat. It also syncs with FitBit and MapMyFitness to provide a daily report on how many calories I have eaten and how many more I can eat and still be under my daily recommended intake. It includes the FitBit and MapMyFitness calories burned so you can actually eat more during the day!

So now you know.  This must be a PERMANENT life style change for me.  I have seen many coworkers in their mid 50’s die of heart attacks or cancer because they ignored the warning signs and ignored their doctor’s advice.  I am not afraid of dying but I don’t want to die anytime soon.  There is still too much that I want to see and do.

I will use this blog to keep everyone who is interested up to date on my progress.  I will also give info on what is working for me so that if you find yourself wanting live a more healthy lifestyle you can use the info for yourself.

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