Sedentary living is a major risk factor for coronary artery disease (CAD). If you are male, over 45 years old, or female over 55, talk to your doctor before you start exercising. You can't change your family history, but you can quit smoking, lose fat and reduce stress. Find out what types of exercise are best for you. If you can’t walk try aqua jogging. Try on an Aqua jogger and run in the water with NO IMPACT.
Additional risk factors for CAD include:
a. blood pressure greater than 140/90 mmHg.
b. cholesterol over 200 and your high density lipoproteins (HDL) less than 35.
c. if you are a male and over 25 percent body fat or female over 35 percent body fat.
If you are extremely overweight, beware of yo-yo and fad diets. Eat several small meals consisting of vegetables, fruits, lean meats, cereals, and grains. Drink plenty of water.
Begin a walking program. Walk five minutes out the door and five minutes back. Increase your time two minutes each week until you are walking an hour 3-6 days per week. If your feet hurt ask your doctor about Toppsole Prothotics.
If your doctor determines you have high blood pressure (BP) walking, biking, low impact aerobics, swimming, or a combination of cross-training programs are ideal. Be sure to warm up and cool down for at least 10 minutes. Monitor your BP during exercise. And keep your activity level low to moderate. Walk instead of jog. Jog rather than run. Perform light repetitions on your PowerBlocks or SportCord. Avoid pushing against an immovable object (isometrics) where you hold our breath (Valsalva Maneuver).
If you are on blood pressure medication (anti hypertensives) such as ACE inhibitors, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, or diuretics your heart rate will be altered. Do not rely on heart rate formulas if you are taking these medicines. Your heart and blood circulation is a closed system. Liken it to a balloon half filled with water. If you add water or squeeze the balloon the pressure rises. The greater the pressure, the increased risk factors for coronary artery disease (CAD).
If you have diabetes, monitor your blood sugar frequently, eat properly, and exercise. Regular exercise may enable your doctor to reduce your medication. Be consistent in the frequency, intensity, and duration of your workouts to help stabilize your blood sugar.
If you are insulin dependent, and you are preparing to ride your stationary bike, do not inject insulin into the working muscles of your leg. Be sure your blood sugar is above 60 before you exercise. Carry carbohydrate snacks during your activity. And monitor your feet for blisters so you can provide immediate care.
If you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) such as asthma, bronchitis, or emphysema certain precautions are necessary. Maintain control of your breathing. Relax, take deep breaths from your diaphragm. Walking, cycling, and swimming are ideal.
Workout below the level of your symptoms. Exercise that requires large upper body involvement such as rowing and cross- country skiing machines may increase your breathing demand. Keep your inhaler available at all times. Extend the time of your warm up and gradually increase your intensity. Accelerate your speed or resistance no more than 5 percent during a single bout of exercise. Drink water to avert dehydration. And avoid cold, pollution, and high pollen.
If you have arthritis you may have painful inflammation, swelling and limited range of motion in your joints. Osteoarthritis is a progressive, irreversible degeneration of the articular surfaces of the joints. Anti-inflammatories and analgesics are treatments of choice. Refrain from activities with quick movements. Non-weight bearing exercise such as swimming and cycling are good choices. Focus on range of motion and muscle strengthening. Since workouts may feel painful at first, try training just 15 minutes, twice a day.
If you are an older adult, be aware of a few modifications in your training program. Your vision, hearing, and reaction time may decrease. Your strength and endurance functional capacity may lessen, causing you to lose muscle mass and reduce your aerobic capacity. But that does not mean older adults should throw in the towel. In fact the opposite is true.
A recent study demonstrated that men and women in their eighties and nineties improved their strength 150 percent on a sixteen week weight training program. Many walked without their canes, and stood up from a seated position without assistance. It is well documented that elite endurance athletes train well into their twilight years.