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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 10-23-09, 04:07 AM   #1
dlester
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Mildly Amusing Medical Encounter

I have lost a lot of weight cycling. About 110 pounds so far. The most sobering thing about that, for me, is that after losing over 100 pounds I realized I still had more to lose. Needless to say, I still have a bit of a belly, but at 210ish pounds I don't look like I used to, but I am far from lean and fit looking.

Anyway, this evening I was doing some after-hours work (which happens to be at a medical center) replacing wiring closet UPS systems. In the midst of doing a particularly cramped closet I managed to crush my right ring finger between the floor and one of the units. It was extremely painful (still is). I jumped around a little with it throbbing, recited a few choice phrases, got some ice on it, but ultimately decided I needed to have it looked at as a work-related injury.

I went down the hall to get checked in and as the nurse was taking my vitals she stared at me a little funny and then asked, "Is it normal for your pulse to be so low?" I responded, "I don't know. How low is it?" She said, "55." I said, "Yeah, that is pretty normal."

Ok, so it isn't a big thing, but a couple of years ago it was closer to 80. Now, even though I am still a bit on the chunky side, daily bicycle riding has produced a very healthy cardiovascular system. It felt good to have an ER nurse not even believe her fancy instrumentation.
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Old 10-23-09, 07:00 AM   #2
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That's one of the reasons I ride. I truely believe bike riding is a life extender. I see so many old people riding bikes on the local bike paths and rail to trails. I not talking 50 and 60, I am talking 70 and 80 year olds. Men and women. I am not a medical professional but I think the constant movement in your legs from riding has a tremendous affect on your blood flow through the big vains in your legs which helps the rest of your body. The sedentary life style of not moving around (walking, riding, etc) has a negative affect on your health. Just my midlife observations at this point. Bike riding + green tea + red wine = long life to see your children's children's children.
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Old 10-23-09, 10:12 AM   #3
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I had a similar experience at the Dentist's office, because they had to check blood pressure and pulse. The first lady checked my pulse and then did it again. then did blood pressure and back to pulse. Then she had someone else check the pulse. They asked me if I was feeling ok. I said yes, but I asked why. They said my heart rate was really low and that they were concerned. I said was it below 50, and they said yes, below 40, and there answer was no. I said it is perfectly fine and that it is a little low for not being first thing in the morning, but that my RHR is around 50. They said on the average mine was about 30 lower than the norm they had been doing.

They also are not nurses, so they were not sure what to do anyway? I told them I had done a 1.2 mile swim that morning and they laughed out loud and said sure. I sat up and said I was serious, and that I was planning a 20 mile bike ride after work that day. They didn't say much the rest of the appointment for the cleaning.
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Old 10-23-09, 11:45 AM   #4
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I had a similar situation that cost me a chunk of change last year.
I went into the hospitol for abdominal procedure, but when admitted, my resting heart rate was 52 and they would not beleive this was normal due to aerobic conditioning thru cycling.
The doctor had a tests ran and consult with cardiologist, cost me $250 to verify my claim that I was in good shape.
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Old 10-23-09, 11:59 AM   #5
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I had a similar situation that cost me a chunk of change last year.
I went into the hospitol for abdominal procedure, but when admitted, my resting heart rate was 52 and they would not beleive this was normal due to aerobic conditioning thru cycling.
The doctor had a tests ran and consult with cardiologist, cost me $250 to verify my claim that I was in good shape.

You should have been able to dispute those charges.
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Old 10-23-09, 11:59 AM   #6
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Spent a night in ER some years ago. It was a painful condition and they gave me morphine. Being a quiet ER in a country hospital they wheeled me off into a dark corner where I fell asleep. Apparently I kept tripping the low heart rate alarm during my sleep.

It's nice to be deceptively fit.
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Old 10-23-09, 12:14 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by BigUgly View Post
That's one of the reasons I ride. I truely believe bike riding is a life extender. I see so many old people riding bikes on the local bike paths and rail to trails. I not talking 50 and 60, I am talking 70 and 80 year olds. Men and women. I am not a medical professional but I think the constant movement in your legs from riding has a tremendous affect on your blood flow through the big vains in your legs which helps the rest of your body. The sedentary life style of not moving around (walking, riding, etc) has a negative affect on your health. Just my midlife observations at this point. Bike riding + green tea + red wine = long life to see your children's children's children.
My better half is 72, rides the two-day MS bike tour every year (180k round trip), and trains at least twice a week all year. Next year he plans to meet up with some old friends from his bike racing days and ride up the Col Du Tourmelet (sp.?). He wants me to come with him, mainly to navigate the way out of Toulouse airport.
I keep telling him his back would ache less if he also took up swimming. Swimmers are also extremely healthy.
His doctor is about 8 years younger than him and terribly unhealthy: looks to be over 300 lbs, has such bad knees he can barely walk. Recently he went to him to sign a form for an exercise class that required it and got a funny look when he said his reason for taking the class was to ride up a mountain. Perhaps he'll inspire the doctor to get on a bike some day.
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Old 10-23-09, 12:47 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by dlester View Post

I went down the hall to get checked in and as the nurse was taking my vitals she stared at me a little funny and then asked, "Is it normal for your pulse to be so low?" I responded, "I don't know. How low is it?" She said, "55." I said, "Yeah, that is pretty normal."
What is even better is when the machine starts doing the emergency beeping because it thinks that either it is malfunctioning or that you are about to die. My best resting heart rate at the doctors office was 44 BPM which caused a mild freak out by the nurse. I'm typically sub 50 bpm when I go to the doctors, a pretty big improvement from the low 70's when I first started.

Keep up the great work!
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Old 10-24-09, 12:01 AM   #9
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What is even better is when the machine starts doing the emergency beeping because it thinks that either it is malfunctioning or that you are about to die. My best resting heart rate at the doctors office was 44 BPM which caused a mild freak out by the nurse. I'm typically sub 50 bpm when I go to the doctors, a pretty big improvement from the low 70's when I first started.

Keep up the great work!
'Way back when, when I was on my college rowing team, I sat down at for a medical check-up and worked on lowering my heart rate. When they checked, it was at 38... freaked the poor girl out.

Nowadays it's in the 70's- I'm not riding enough, I drink too much coffee, I'm diabetic (Type 1- see my other posts), and my job is nutso. I work at a local hospital as a combination pharmacy/computer tech, and we're getting slammed by bad flu cases.
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Old 10-24-09, 12:28 AM   #10
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There was a 94 year old guy who used to cycle past my old house every day on a real old bike. Nice and slow he went, head cocked down. Then I stopped seeing him for a while and shortly after that moved to a new address. I wondered where he was when he 'disappeared' and thoguht that was the end and said a little 'fairwell' to him.

Just the other day I saw him again! I know he was 94 years old about 2 years ago when the local paper interviewed him. So now he's 96!

Other old people I met: an ex racing cyclist who's 76. She's put on weight now, still cycles occasionally. She talked with me at length about 'back in the days we had tubs' tubular tires). She also told me her friend who's 73 is still cycling a lot more than her, and is still slim and quite lean.
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