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Very scary - Exercise kills

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Very scary - Exercise kills

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Old 12-16-17, 06:55 PM
  #76  
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I don't exercise to add years to my life, but to add life to my years.
BTW I plan on living forever, so far, so good.
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Old 12-25-17, 06:23 AM
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I didn't read the full article but I know that extreme endurance athletes have heart issues - I'm talking about marathoners, and century racers, or those in Ultra class that double the distance - and specifically race-level efforts for those distances.

My best friend is a cardiologist and I've had numerous discussion about exercise and its effect on the heart and he told me that 'normal' cardio exercise - even walking - is beneficial. It's when things are taken to the extreme that the health benefits start reversing. The question is - what is extreme?

I've been a weightlifter all my life and have some left ventricle refraction issues - which 30 years ago would have been diagnosed as a disease - but my cardiologist friend tells me it's a normal response to lifting weights and all such athletes have it - and it's now considered normal. And I push myself very hard - as I did even in my 20s - I only use lower weight now.

Regarding Jim Fixx - he was a smoker all his life until taking up running and had a family history of heart disease (his brother and father died in their early 40's). Again - my cardiologist pal said that genetics trumps everything when it comes to the heart. He recommends a Calcium Stress Test - this is a non-invasive heart scan where they look to see how much calcification there is in the major arteries - from there, they can predict the blockage. normal stress tests don't find anything until there is a major problem already. For this other reasons, he and many other doctors I've spoken to, recommend a low-dose statin (even if your cholesterol is normal). the reason is this helps prevent plaque in the first place as well as lower overall inflammation - which is how plaque forms.

I recall in Leanard Zinn's book I read about cycling over 50 - he made the comment that he didn't think he or several of his friends (who were in there 70's to 80s at that time) would have even been alive had it not been for high-intensity cycling. A very strong statement indeed but it resonated with me - since I pretty much only do HIT intervals now - unless I'm joyriding with my wife. (I'm 50)

One last point - one of my neighbors is 82 and rides consistently 20-30 miles per day when the weather permits. he credits his long life and generally good physical condition to cycling- (I mean this guy still shovels snow like he's in his 30s). I hope that I can do the same in 32 years.
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Old 01-01-18, 05:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
I have heard a whole bunch of drummer put-down jokes .... that one is new. Thank you.

If you ever get to work with a really good drummer, it's like, the whole band suddenly become stars . . . .trouble is they won't play with anybody; they'd rather not work at all than do that!
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Old 05-29-18, 07:33 AM
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If you look at these stats, then the only conclusion one can come to is that exercise does NOT kill, well, except in a few cases...

I found this video, which addressed sudden death of cyclist Michael Goolaerts during the past Paris-Roubaix.

It always gets a lot of attention when an athlete suddenly dies of cardiac arrest; however, it's actually quite rare, but it does get much attention.

I have to admit, before watching this video (which also has some very good links for more information)...my first thought was always doping, which can be a factor, but it's far more complicated than that....

Sudden Cardiac Death in Athletes - a brief overview The Science of Sport




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Old 05-29-18, 09:17 AM
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Q: What do you call good pitch for a banjo?

A: Tossing it in a dumpster from 30 feet away without hitting the walls.

So, some exercise is good, a lot of exercise is (maybe) better, and extreme exercise is not good? I think I'm down with that.
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Old 05-29-18, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
Q: What do you call good pitch for a banjo?

A: Tossing it in a dumpster from 30 feet away without hitting the walls.

So, some exercise is good, a lot of exercise is (maybe) better, and extreme exercise is not good? I think I'm down with that.
I agree that extreme exercise is not good for one's health; however, this begs the question...What is extreme exercise?

To me, extreme exercise is exercising to the point when you shouldn't be, or at least exercising at a very comfortable aerobic level -- personal thing, difficult to quantify. In other words, one needs to know when not to push and when to take a break.

Problem is, that most people think that if someone goes anaerobic x-amount of times per week, then that qualifies as "extreme exercise". Again, it's a personal thing and it depends on how developed one's aerobic/anaerobic system is conditioned.

Not too long ago, if I were to do ten very hard sprints in a week, I'd be shot and in danger of feeling the effects of "over-trained". However, now that I'm more conditioned, I can easily do ten very hard sprints in a week (I'm 53-y/o). And since I've incorporated anaerobic exercise into my regimen, I'm much more healthy (WRT cardio) than I was when I mostly did simple aerobic riding -- it took me to a whole new level.

I guess what I'm saying is that what constitutes "extreme exercise" is very personal thing. And I do not think that professional cyclists, as a whole, are tearing themselves down with extreme exercise.

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Old 05-29-18, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by work4bike View Post
I agree that extreme exercise is not good for one's health; however, this begs the question...What is extreme exercise?

To me, extreme exercise is exercising to the point when you shouldn't be, or at least exercising at a very comfortable aerobic level -- personal thing, difficult to quantify. In other words, one needs to know when not to push and when to take a break.

Problem is, that most people think that if someone goes anaerobic x-amount of times per week, then that qualifies as "extreme exercise". Again, it's a personal thing and it depends on how developed one's aerobic/anaerobic system is conditioned.

Not too long ago, if I were to do ten very hard sprints in a week, I'd be shot and in danger of feeling the effects of "over-trained". However, now that I'm more conditioned, I can easily do ten very hard sprints in a week (I'm 53-y/o). And since I've incorporated anaerobic exercise into my regimen, I'm much more healthy (WRT cardio) than I was when I mostly did simple aerobic riding -- it took me to a whole new level.

I guess what I'm saying is that what constitutes "extreme exercise" is very personal thing. And I do not think that professional cyclists, as a whole, are tearing themselves down with extreme exercise.
FWIW, I agree with you. Some of the studies I've seen about what constitutes an endurance athlete and what does not are all over the map ... from someone who rides a bike more than 20 miles a day to someone who is involved with competitive triathlons.

I suppose it is possible, but I have a hard time believing that any duration of exercise done at a level where you can carry out a conversation is going to cause negative health issues. I have no data to back it up, but I believe it likely that if there is a problem, it is for those who exercise in a highly aerobic or even anerobic state on a regular basis. And as you say, that depends on the individual.
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Old 05-29-18, 12:21 PM
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Lets look at this logically. Over training is the bailiwick of the professional cyclist. The rest of us are pud knockers, pretenders, and wanna bees.

So unless you are an international racing star, cycle in moderation. This is why I have always posted notes saying enjoy cycling dont kill yourself.
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Old 05-29-18, 01:08 PM
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My Mother is a Gym Member in her mid 70's.
She has weight issues. Which ran in nearly her entire Family. My Grandmother was not heavy and had six children, and my Grandfather was somewhat heavy and an alcoholic and this may have contributed to bad nerves, and weight issues for my Mother and her siblings all of whom died in their 50's, and 60's, one dying in his early 20's.
She goes to the Gym regularly. She was working with a trainer a couple years ago and this goofball drove her to hard and she hurt herself.
So be careful and don't let anybody push you out of your comfort zone, and don't push yourself to hard. Especially as you age!
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Old 05-29-18, 02:30 PM
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My take? If being fit at the weekend warrior competitive level is good for me, then so is a stiff dose of high-intensity interval training, because there's no way to get fit without it. Most people would not consider hard intervals or lactate threshold training "moderate," but they are nothing compared to what real athletes do, year in, year out.

Incidentally, there seem to be at least three categories of heart disease being conflated here: blood-starved muscle (ischemia) from bad vessels—the big risk for people like us, a congenital propensity to ventricular arrhythmias, which kills a young athlete from time to time, and chronic changes in the heart muscle and/or electrical conduction system related to a lifetime of high-level training and competition, which isn't very well understood, as far as I can tell. The routine stress test is designed to detect the first category and, while arrhythmias might show up, it's not the right way to look for them.

Statistically, I am going to die from ischemic heart disease. Other forms of heart damage simply aren't on my radar.
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Old 05-29-18, 02:58 PM
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I've read through most of the replies here and really didn't see much mention of Genetics. There is no substitute for good genes and there is no way to get around it.

I wonder if the authors of this book or for any of these studies for that matter have taken account or even looked into family genetics? It seems to me that your family genetics plays a far greater role in disease and longevity than any one other item.

You always here about this or that guy or grandmother has lived 90 plus years and smokes like a chimney. We hardly ever hear of their genetics though. Then we hear of stories like a friend of mine that got lung cancer at 35 and never smoked nor was around smokers in their life. So, clearly there is more to it than say just a healthy lifestyle.

Secondly, I wonder what the effects are on people who start getting in shape at an older age. I've been an athlete my whole life (now 62) and wonder what the effects are on those that wait until they are 50 to start getting in better shape. Does the lifelong athlete benefit more over the long haul as opposed to those that start around 50 or greater? Wear and tear or are things stronger because you have kept in shape for many years. I never see things like this addressed, let alone what role genetics plays in ones longevity. My father died at 92 and my mother is still kicking at 94 and her brother is still alive at 93 too. Does that mean I will live into my 90's? Who knows. Like I said, my father lived to 92 but all his siblings died before they turned 80 so he must have been blessed with the better genes or was it his lifestyle?

Bottom line to me is given the data we have on general exercise, I'm going to keep going as long as I can stay injury free. I just have to modify my riding to more closely reflect my age. If that means slowing down so be it. I watch my HR very closely and try not to get into the 90% zone when riding but I know there is a hill or two that causes my HR to spike into that 95% zone which causes me to back off a bit.

So, for me, I think a major factor is genetics and then staying fit. The body was made to do work and if far better off when moving or working at some activity. You can fight the genetics battle a bit but in the end, genetics more than anything will determine how long you can stay in the game.

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Old 05-29-18, 04:01 PM
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Should healthy old people avoid high HRs and intense efforts? Nothing I heard in medical school or since suggests that’s true. I push it to the gasping max on a regular basis. Haven’t puked for years, though.

As for genes, they are very important, but they interact in complex ways with each other and the environment so, unless they have huge effects, the picture stays complicated.
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Old 05-29-18, 05:03 PM
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Of course Genes matter. But poor health practices matter as well. I have seen the differences between both sides of my Family. They live to be old as dirt on my Father's side, and on my Mother's side they all dropped dead before their 68th birthday Out of 8 people on my Mother's side, her and her younger sister are still living and my oldest uncle was born in 1940. Died in 2001.
And only my Father took care of himself on his side of the family but was never a big exerciser. He and his wife belong to a Gym and exercise regularly. On my Father's side they drank, smoked, and took poor care of themselves and my Grandparents lived into their 90's. Key is they all eventually gave up their bad habits, and they never did on my Mother's side. My Mother's Father gave up the bad habit's almost to late, or he would have been much younger than 67. He would go through two boxes of Kleenex every morning from coughing up phlegm from emphysema. Amazing. My mother's Father was a character........and he was one tough fella! Still, he bought it early.

I wonder how many people posting are in their 70's and beyond. A friend of my Father just gave up cycling at 90. As stated that's an outlier.
Again being careful makes sense.
It's like everybody on here should be cycling a 100+ miles every week like I do. Now wait for the character to come along and say they do that every day. And are 79.
And I can cycle a whole lot more, but don't need to.........and I can still feel it after 15 miles, especially having to pay attention to all the traffic along the way.
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Old 05-29-18, 09:26 PM
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73 in a few days and still doing long, hard rides. This past Sunday we rode our tandem 65 miles over 2 mountain passes, about 5000' climbing, about 2 hours in zone 3 and and hour in zone 4. Lots tougher on the tandem than on one of my singles. We'll take it on a 120 mile ride next Sunday. So far, so good. Heart-wise, I have the usual coronary calcium of a person my age - probably genetic. My couch potato 4 year older older brother had a quadruple bypass about 15 years ago, so I'm doing better than him. I'm on a statin but my cholesterol and ratios are very good. I have a left ventricle partial bundle blockage, which is also pretty common. So far no arrhythmia issues. I'm not going to change anything until I have to.
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Old 05-29-18, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by StarBiker View Post
Of course Genes matter. But poor health practices matter as well. I have seen the differences between both sides of my Family. They live to be old as dirt on my Father's side, and on my Mother's side they all dropped dead before their 68th birthday Out of 8 people on my Mother's side, her and her younger sister are still living and my oldest uncle was born in 1940. Died in 2001.
And only my Father took care of himself on his side of the family but was never a big exerciser. He and his wife belong to a Gym and exercise regularly. On my Father's side they drank, smoked, and took poor care of themselves and my Grandparents lived into their 90's. Key is they all eventually gave up their bad habits, and they never did on my Mother's side. My Mother's Father gave up the bad habit's almost to late, or he would have been much younger than 67. He would go through two boxes of Kleenex every morning from coughing up phlegm from emphysema. Amazing. My mother's Father was a character........and he was one tough fella! Still, he bought it early.

I wonder how many people posting are in their 70's and beyond. A friend of my Father just gave up cycling at 90. As stated that's an outlier.
Again being careful makes sense.
It's like everybody on here should be cycling a 100+ miles every week like I do. Now wait for the character to come along and say they do that every day. And are 79.
And I can cycle a whole lot more, but don't need to.........and I can still feel it after 15 miles, especially having to pay attention to all the traffic along the way.
Embroidered Genes are awesome. Don't panic! Death kills everyone!
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Old 05-30-18, 08:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Rollfast View Post
Embroidered Genes are awesome. Don't panic! Death kills everyone!
I am not remotely panicked. One can't apply their health situation to others.
I am in great shape. But I am not 75. My Father is 75 and is in great shape also. Not a cyclist.
And the weight issues on my mother's side were driven by bad habits. My mother still eats foods that make her fat, and although she exercises every day she does not burn enough calories to burn off the junk that she eats to often.
When I was growing up my Father gave us vitamins daily. He was always health conscious.
I was a party animal in my teens, 20's, and early 30's. If I continued on that path I to would have an early demise.
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Old 05-30-18, 09:38 AM
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So, in summary:
1. What we all have in common is that we’re all different.
2. The definition of “extreme” varies, not only from person to person but even with the same person. Three years ago I rode 3 centuries in one year. If I tried that now, I’d hurt myself.
3. Exercise physiology is complicated. For example, many physicians think that being an active couch potato (exercising hard for 30 minutes and then laying around doing nothing for the rest of the day) is actually bad for you.
4. Sometimes there’s nothing wrong with getting a participation trophy (damn, I sound like a snowflake now). I think comparing speeds and distances at our ages makes as much sense as comparing the sizes of our male members in spite of each of us having had multiple children.
That’s it. Off to yoga class...
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Old 05-31-18, 11:40 PM
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Is too much exercise the problem or is the problem, too little recovery?
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Old 06-01-18, 01:56 AM
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I'm 68 and have been riding long distances for over 30 years. I was diagnosed with permanent A-Fib 3 years ago. My Md.has me on two RXs that slow my heart rate. He wants to put me on one of the new powerful anticoagulants. I don't want to take it and bleed to death from some minor roadrash. Might have to ad some pressure bandages to my kit. It sucks
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Old 06-01-18, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by texaspandj View Post
I don't exercise to add years to my life, but to add life to my years.
BTW I plan on living forever, so far, so good.
Weel said! Reminds me of the saying, "Remember, old age is a privilege afforded to the few."
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Old 06-01-18, 04:38 AM
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Of couse that should be well said. Where's speed check when you need it!
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Old 06-18-18, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by John00 View Post
I'm 68 and have been riding long distances for over 30 years. I was diagnosed with permanent A-Fib 3 years ago. My Md.has me on two RXs that slow my heart rate. He wants to put me on one of the new powerful anticoagulants. I don't want to take it and bleed to death from some minor roadrash. Might have to ad some pressure bandages to my kit. It sucks
Our situations may or may not be the same. I'm 67 and had afib for the last 2-3 years. I was on Metoprolol and Flecainide with Xeralto for a blood thinner. I had heart ablation surgery in February this year. The surgery went great and I had very little post-operation pain or fatigue. My heart rate was elevated for a couple of months (typical result) and is now back to normal for my current level of fitness. I did have some increased bruising and external bleeding from minor cuts and scrapes when I was on Xeralto - but, I didn't die from a blood clot or even worse, not die from a stroke and end up totally screwed for the rest of my life. You probably should have been on anticoagulants since the onset of your afib. I highly recommend getting ablation surgery as soon as possible from the best electrocardiologist you can find if you are a suitable candidate. As long as you have afib, even if treated, you run the risk of damaging your heart in other ways and the drugs you are taking can interfere with other medications you may need to take in the future. My wife is a fairly brilliant hospital pharmacist and was an adjunct professor with the University of Florida College of Pharmacy for several years. I'm very lucky to have her guidance when faced with these issues. I hope your situation works out for the best!

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Old 06-19-18, 09:41 AM
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If you're an inveterate cyclist, then riding a bike probably is the last thing that'll give you a heart attack... people die of heart attacks shoveling snow in the winter because it's an activity they seldom do.
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Old 06-21-18, 01:31 PM
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I'll be 70 in a few months. I was an endurance athlete (cycling, x-country skiing) in my 20's and 30's. I had a serious heart attack at age 43, another at 52, and quadruple bypass at 65. Since then I've ridden about 6,000 miles, but my competitive nature got me into a bit of trouble. I trained diligently and carefully for a 50 mile gravel race in October 2016. About two weeks before the race, my fitness level dropped noticeably. I did the race and finished about in the middle of the 700 riders. Unfortunately, I never recovered and felt like crap all that fall and into the winter. My doc thought it was a very low thyroid, but in the Spring of 2017 when I got back on the bike my heart rate was crazy. I have worn a heart monitor on every ride since my bypass, for obvious reason, so I spotted the trouble immediately. It still took months for the docs to diagnose an atrial flutter. Atrial flutter is, unlike atrial fibrillation, a regular beat. Neither are life threatening in the short run, but put you at risk of stroke and ultimately congestive heart failure. I finally saw a cardiac electrophysiologist who said he knew exactly what was wrong with my heart and could fix it! I had an ablation procedure last fall and the "fix" was immediate and apparently permanent.


Now, I have a damaged heart from my first heart attack, and my ejection fraction (the % of blood pumped out of the heart with each beat) of less than 40%. Even bypass surgery did nothing to improve that. Still, with the atrial flutter fixed I am riding and feeling great. I will skip the high intensity intervals, but otherwise am doing great on the bike. Nearly every athlete I competed with in the old days has developed atrial fibrillation, but I suspect that this is due to the remodeling of the heart under the influence of sustained high intensity competitive racing - I am talking races like the American Birkebeiner, a 55K very hilly x-country ski race. So I am not skeptical of the theory, but not exercising is worse, and even with Afib the recommendation is that exercise helps. Consistent, moderate exercise. What better way to do that than on a bike. The fact I was able to accomplish what I have with a seriously damaged heart, even though I pushed myself into an arrhythmia through overtraining, is absolutely no reason to stop riding. In fact, though I became passionate about cycling 50 years ago, the most enjoyable rides of my life have been those in the past 5 years. I am very watchful, and track my response to exercise with my heart monitor and Strava, but if for some crazy reason I drop dead on my bike, everyone should know I was doing something I truly loved.
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Old 06-23-18, 11:19 AM
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Terex
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Originally Posted by Viking55803 View Post
I'll be 70 in a few months. I was an endurance athlete (cycling, x-country skiing) in my 20's and 30's. I.... if for some crazy reason I drop dead on my bike, everyone should know I was doing something I truly loved.
Yep - you totally fit the profile. But what a great life! Just don't move to high altitude (I'm at 7600'). That's another real stressor for heart issues. With any luck, you'll drop dead on your bike at about 100.
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