“Light” Rehab Begins : I arrived... - British Heart Fou...

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“Light” Rehab Begins

MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star

I arrived slightly early yesterday as a) I always pop to the loo in case things end up running ate and b) to find the location as it was not where I had my pre-rehab assessment. A few minutes later I found a likely looking group and asked if they were for cardio rehab – they were but seemed slightly unsure if they were in the right location (the appointment information was not the clearest|). Anyway, a cardio rehab nurse appeared and lead us to the gym, although it looked nothing like the one from my schooldays!

We were each given a clipboard containing our basic information and had to check our medication reflected out current situation. This was followed by “obs”, blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR) and, where applicable blood glucose (BG). I was surprised to find my maximum HR was 104 – 108 which is lower than the InterWeb suggest. At the end of this we were two down – one person did not feel too good and the other had a very high BG and was not allowed to exercise (more later).

Once completed we started the warm up. Despite being one of the younger ones my coordination was dreadful. However, I felt like the walking wounded with the arthritis in my left hip playing up, my left shoulder aching (did I sleep in a funny position?) and the tail end of the coccygodynia. The muscle on that leg is also quite weak after years of PAD (at least the blood flow has improved post-bypass). After various exercises we went on to weights. Being a gentleman, and towering over everyone else, I let the others choose their weights first. This left three sets; a 1kg set in bright pink and two 2.5 kg ones in yellow. Only the instructor had picked up a 2.5kg set so I though “Go for it” and went for them. They gave me a decent workout as I could feel it n y arms afterwards and had the odd bead of perspiration. The session finished of with a circuit with tread mill, exercise bikes and steps. The exercise bike went well but coordination got me on the steps. Afterwards it was cool down exercises and a cup of coffee with a biscuit. During the exercises my pulse only got to 84 and my BGs were good.

The exercise was followed by a talk o health eating but to be honest I learnt nothing new.

BGs – A Note: Exercise reduces BG but is not recommended with very high (I will not quote a figure but et diabetics refer to their consultant) as a) the BG can increase further with exercise and b) there will be an increased risk of a clot forming. When I was awaiting my bypass, I was told to avoid very high and v ery low BGs as both can trigger a cardiac event. Hardly reassuring as delay followed delay!

15 Replies

I go for my first rehab on Wednesday,I wish people would not us abbreviations, haven't got a clue what BG is.

MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to brads27

BG = blood glucose. I defined it early on for clarity!

brads27 profile image
brads27 in reply to MichaelJH

I haven't had that done.

I had an assessment pre rehab. Took an hour and very thorough.

Loved the rehab, I was the oldest and the only female.

Having had a previous hip replacement I was careful with a couple of the leg stretches.

All in all an amazing ten weeks.

Was offered further three months at a local gym but by that time was walking five miles a day and swimming.

What surprised me was only two of us had undergone open heart surgery the rest were stents

Also joined local Heart Support Group who offered all sorts of different things. But I don't play cards or bingo and their walks were very short (a mile max).

Nine months after valve replacement I am still walking daily and swimming twice a week.

Feel fantastic.

MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to Nanny72

I did not find out all the causes for attendance but nobody I spoke to had had open heart surgery. Many post heart attack either with/without stents. Without stents it was other causes like AF. Glad to hear you are doing well!

thetidders profile image
thetidders in reply to Nanny72

I’m in the middle of cardiac rehab & have noticed just like you that women are definitely in the minority. I haven’t met anyone else who like me has had a bypass or any other heart surgery. They do seem to be post heart attack with stents & some with cardiac failure.


MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to thetidders

Mine was a mixed group - more ladies than gentleman. With the two going home before the start the balance changed even more. It may be that younger people without OHS start in the start in the other group they run.

I was surprised by the person who was sent home with a seriously elevated BG. It was only 10:00am so must really have overdone it the night before or had sugary breakfast cereal! :(

thetidders profile image
thetidders in reply to MichaelJH

Hi after I wa assessed the physios decided I would go into the Circuits class for 4 weeks & then onto the gym for a further 8 mainly because of my asthma. However the circuits group was full up & there would be no space for a few weeks so it was decided I could go straight into the gym & start slowly in there. I think that it was because I used to go to a gym before my angiogram in February, afterwards that I was banned until post bypass. I only see other groups if some of them stay for a talk afterwards & I must admit there do seem to be more women from the circuit or chair class.

I’m on a relaxing holiday in Southern Spain at the moment but rehab begins this Thursday for the next 6 weeks.


Brads27 asked if people could use less abbreviations - It is a fair comment and despite your brusque reply, you went on to use two further abbreviations - OF and OHS. Not everyone is an expert, so be a good chap and heed a valid request - On another note, what was the point of your first post? Or was it just how much you enjoyed the event?

MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to

Sorry, not worthy of a response!

Hi Michael, read your post and can fully understand your response. I do tend to read most things twice before I respond,which ticking ticker I don't think you did lol

Frank W

MichaelJH profile image
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to Prada47

Thank you. On a more serious note did you have you BG (blood glucose) checked? The HbA1 measures the average over the last few months and can spot an issue missed by a single measurement of BG. HbA1c is also known as glycosylated, or glycated hemoglobin.

Concerned profile image
Concerned in reply to MichaelJH

And high-insulin levels can cause chronic ill health for tens of years before fasting blood glucose/HbA1c even begins to show signs of becoming raised above 5.4/40.

Unfortunately, we don't tend to measure insulin levels, especially post-prandial.

Prada47 profile image
Prada47 in reply to MichaelJH

Yes they check BG on a regular basis when I have blood test around 3 monthly whilst adjusting meds upwards.


in reply to Prada47

With the greatest respects, no one could be expected to rear posts prior to the one they were responding to. It is also a fair point to understand that there are those who may be, for whatever reason, not be as "switched on" as you or MichaelJH is. The person who originally asked about abbreviations raised a valid point and Michaels reply was at best unhelpful and at worst sarcastic. That is not fair nor justified. So before understanding him, perhaps we would all be wiser if we give a thought to the people that may actually read our posts and realise there are many types, including those whose English is not their first language and where judging people can be a very naive thing to do.

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