Can you return to exercise after a significant cardiac event or cardiovascular diagnosis?
It is important to consult your general physician or your regular cardiologist prior, however, the short answer is YES!
There is a difference between Physical Activity and Exercise. Physical activity doesn’t have to be vigorous. Simple lifestyle changes, like walking 30 minutes to the shops or at home yoga will still have a significant impact.
When it comes to exercise, eg. Running, group sports, gym classes, and so on, we must stress again the importance of consulting your trusted doctor. If you were an active person prior to your diagnosis or episode, they may recommend easing back into a moderate level of activity prior to returning to high-intensity workouts.
Why is physical exercise good for the heart?
Building up slowly towards daily actions increases the health of all muscles, but most importantly the Heart Muscle. By working your heart to a healthier level you can lower your risk of heart disease by up to one-third.
How do you get back into exercise?
- Start small. Ensure you block some time each day for light activity. Even if it is walking, you can count your steps and set yourself a challenge of beating that each week.
- Keeping it interesting. Not everyone is excited by the thought of exercising, however, if you mix it up and try new things you may find an activity that doesn’t even feel like exercise. Have you ever tried dancing or Tai Chi?
- Find a Buddy. There are a number of community groups that get together and exercise. The Heart Foundation Australia sponsors walking groups all across the country. You never know who you will meet.