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  1. #1
    Senior Member MLKATO's Avatar
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    Riding with heart disease.....how many suffer from it?

    Or once did? I am a 53 year old male with heart problems. I had a heart difbulator put in last year. I would like to ride again to get some excess weight off,but I'm afraid of ovver doing it and set off my difibulator.My doctor suggest I start slow,but how slow is slow? And would a heart monitor work? And are they accurate?

  2. #2
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    "Slow" is toodling around the block then 2 blocks etc. in the most comfortable riding position you can find. If you feel "off" or bad then stop to rest or go home. The process for you will be longer than others to ensure your heart can keep up so just keep at it slow but sure.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
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    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
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  3. #3
    R_Z
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    Senior Member R_Z's Avatar
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    If the doctor says you can ride at all, I say go for it. Take it slow. Take a ride around the block and see how you feel. Next day if you're up for it try 2 blocks etc.

  4. #4
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Bypass 12 years ago and had to re-educate the brain to get cycling again. Not difficult as I wanted get back to riding but just a bit of doubt as to how hard I could push myself.

    Don't know if you are new to cycling or coming back but the doc has the start point right and that is slow. There is a lot more to cycling than working the heart. The legs- torso- arms and just about everypart of the body will get worked along with the heart and the lungs.

    Heart Monitors--For someone getting over a heart problem they will give you confidence. They won't help you in training but it will give you the confidence to show how hard you are working and eventually that you can get the HR up to a sensible limit without problems.

    I take it you are still on Beta Blockers and they will limit the amount of work you can put in as they will lower your heart rate and cause you to ride at a lowe level than you would think is normal. To me that means that if you ride within your comfort zone of just breathing hard and the legs just aching- there is no way you can do any damage to your heart. You will not be able to raise the HR to a level that will cause any damage unless you really go to the limit.

    But start gently- Concentrate on improving milage initially and not speed and just get yourself adjusted to riding

    But what bike have you got- or are going to get? And remember that all that exercise will cause you to lose carbo-hydrates and hence energy. Best way to replace them is to find a cafe on your ride and have a coffee and Pie. As you improve- just find a different cafe further away to one that sells better Pie.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  5. #5
    Senior Member skilsaw's Avatar
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    Start cycling slowly and gently, but first drop at least $3000 on a bike.
    The one who has the most bikes wins.

  6. #6
    Senior Member MLKATO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skilsaw View Post
    Start cycling slowly and gently, but first drop at least $3000 on a bike.
    I bought our last car for that much! My wife would freak if I spent even the amount did on my current ride. I have Raliegh mountain bike I bought for $350 17 years ago.This was before I was married. Yeah,I'm starting slow,around the block.Not too bad today.I'll try going farther tomorrow.Eventually I'm going to work my way to the library and the city park when the weather clears.This is about a mile or so,they also have a walking path I guess I can ride on.

  7. #7
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    Can only address the heart rate monitor. They can give you information about how hard you are pushing. Ask you doctor what he recommends as a good range to shoot for when you start. The monitor will help you stay within the ranges suggested. The nice thing about cycling is that it can be as easy or as hard as you want it to be. Good luck!
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

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    I had a heart attack about 10 years ago.I started riding about a year ago and did about 4000 miles my first year.I now have 4 bikes and just paid 300 dollars for the most expensive a spectacular vintage steel Trek racing bike.My blood pressure is like a teen ager and I've lost 20 lbs(gained back 5 in the winter)I feel pretty good for a 55 year old with or without a heart condition.I just can't stand not to be on the bike!!!My longest ride is 72 miles and I'm trying to work myself up to a century.Ride my friend Ride!!

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    I'm 64 and recently learned that my aorta is enlarged - my regular Dr. heard a murmur during a routine physical and sent me for an echocardiogram. When the cardiologist looked at it he called me in to discuss it, said the aorta was bigger than it should be and this was causing my aortic valve to leak - the leaflets can't close completely so some of the blood leaks back into my heart instead of proceeding through the aorta to the rest of my body. Anyway, the result was that he put me on a drug to lower my blood pressure and another one to lower my cholesterol even though both were normal. He also said not to lift more than 20 pounds and not to get my heart rate above 70% of calculated max, at least not for very long. He did say that going to 80% or 85% briefly would be OK. So I've put an electric motor on my recumbent to serve as a "hill flattener" and it works quite nicely. I can still ride, just not at 130 bpm all day as I was used to - I wore a heart rate monitor on a cross country tour a few years ago so I have the data. At any rate, the more exercise the better is my understanding, just not at high intensities.

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    Every case is different, but I've been riding in chronic atrial fibrillation (it's not "fibulation," btw) since 1989. Through a couple of newspaper stories and word of mouth, I've met or heard from eight or 10 people who exercise despite (or because of) heart conditions of one kind or another. Based on my experience and what they've said, the advice here so far is good. Talk to your doctor, then start slow and follow his advice. My cardiologist is an ex-marathon runner and long distance cyclist, and he encourages a level of exercise that a few other docs have questioned, but it's worked for me so far.

  11. #11
    Newbie Test Eagle's Avatar
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    Hello - I'm wondering if there is anyone with Cardiovascular Disease who competes in racing?

  12. #12
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Test Eagle View Post
    Hello - I'm wondering if there is anyone with Cardiovascular Disease who competes in racing?
    I'd say many but most don''t know they have the disease.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  13. #13
    Senior Member VaultGuru's Avatar
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    Wow, after reading the posts on this thread, I feel so very fortunate and blessed. I have a 50% calcium blockage in the LAD and the CA is 30% blocked. My cardiologist suggested that I decrease my max heart rate by 10% (153). I am on statins, obviously, and I feel no change, but I know that I can be 95% blocked and never feel it until...
    Ride, ride, ride - within your limits. If you don't know your limits, get it checked. You don't want to be the ...

  14. #14
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VaultGuru View Post
    Wow, after reading the posts on this thread, I feel so very fortunate and blessed. I have a 50% calcium blockage in the LAD and the CA is 30% blocked. My cardiologist suggested that I decrease my max heart rate by 10% (153). I am on statins, obviously, and I feel no change, but I know that I can be 95% blocked and never feel it until...
    Ride, ride, ride - within your limits. If you don't know your limits, get it checked. You don't want to be the ...
    I had one artery blocked by 95% and 2 by 75%. The Doctor looked at me and asked if it was cycling or Swimming as The Aorta was clear. After telling him that it was cycling- he said that as the Aorta was clear- when the blockage occured my heart was pumping so strong that it probably saved my life. Clear Aortas only occur in those that can get the HR up to a high working level to keep it clean and the best two sports for that are Cycling and swimming.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  15. #15
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    Had a minor heart attack 8 years ago (age 44), cardiac cath, stent, now on statins, beta blocker. Went through cardiac rehab. I started riding a bike after that as a method to get regular exercise, and I now ride over an hour a day (got rid of my car, and I commute to/from work on the bike).

    My advice:

    Don't listen to me, or others on this list, but rather to your Dr. Find a Dr who you feel comfortable with, and who is willing to support your goals. Ask for a heart rate range for your exercise, and you can get a HR monitor and use that to keep heart rate within that range.

    Keep the rubber side down.

    In my case, the bicycle, along with dietary changes have resulted in my dropping 40lbs, and I feel better now than I did 10 years ago.

  16. #16
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MLKATO View Post
    My wife would freak if I spent even the amount did on my current ride. I have Raliegh mountain bike I bought for $350 17 years ago.
    My wife is just the opposite when it comes to buying quality equipment. When I say something about the price of something she says, "How much is your health worth?"
    Don't go cheap. Get a GOOD bike!!
    My bikes --> 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2013 Cannondale CAAD 10 2 (5) "Racing Edition"

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  17. #17
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    My heart problem is occasional afib (atrial fibrillation) where the heart beats rapidly and irregularly. It's under control but now we ride Schwinn World GSE electric bikes that take the strain off riding but still require pedaling to make the motor work. Refer to the Electric Bikes section of this site. I would recommend looking at the Prodeco bikes out of Florida that go for about $1000.

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