Follow this Simple Home Exercise Program to bounce back 
to life post a Heart Attack

Why exercise ?

  • Exercise has always been a much needed activity for the body and most importantly the heart.
  • To decrease Heart's need for oxygen and more effective working.
  • To lower the risk of plaque build up.
  • It helps reduce the stress on the heart by improving the blood flow and controlling the blood pressure.
  • Weight management.
  • To improve emotional well-being by reducing stress.
  • To reduce risk of Osteoporosis.

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The advantages of Exercise

  • Aerobic exercise can restore stamina and energy and help you regain an active lifestyle.It involves constant and calculated movement of the major muscle groups such as your legs and arms and can help in the efficient usage of oxygen by the cells.
  • Resistance training can help in strengthening of muscles and consumption of calories.

Aerobic Exercise

After returning home from a long hospital stay you may have to start a daily exercise routine.You have to start slowly and then build up a good rhythm.

Some activities that you can start with the approval with your physician includes:

Activity - Use of Treadmill / Stationary Bike or walking on level surface.

Frequency - Most days of a week.(5-6 days)

Duration - Start with 10 minutes of exercise and then gradually increase your walking or biking by 1-2 minutes each day.Your goal is to reach 30-40 minutes of continuous exercise.

Signs to expect when you exercise

  • Breathing faster
  • Increased Heart Rate
  • Sweating
  • Tiredness / Fatigue
  • Cramps

Knowing How Long and Hard to Exercise

  • Start with 5 minutes of walking 2-3 times per day. Add few minutes to each session each day. As you add time, the number of sessions can be decreased.
  • When you are able to do  20-30 minutes at one time, intensity can be increased slowly. Increase your session for 3-5 minutes at a time. Then resume your normal routine for the rest of your workout.
  • Your heart rate and how you feel will govern the duration and the intensity of your exercise session. Heart rate will not be increased to the prescribed level if you are on beta blocker medicines.
  • Do not exercise outdoors when it is too hot, cold or humid.
  • Avoid taking hot or cold showers after exercise as extreme temperature increase the workload on your heart.
  • Make sure you stays hydrated.
  • Increase the intensity slowly.Always keep the Talk Test rule in the mind. 
  • If your exercise program is interrupted for some days due to some reason like illness, vacation or bad weather, you should resume with reduced level of activity and gradually increase it.

What is Talk Test ?

You should be able to talk in short sentences but will not likely be able to sing. You should choose an exercise routine that allows you to still talk while you exercise.

When to STOP Exercising and CALL your local DOCTOR ?

It is important to know what is not normal. If you notice any of the following symptoms, STOP exercising and call your local doctor immediately :

  • Severe chest pain / Angina
  • Excessive shortness of breath
  • Inability to talk
  • Profuse sweating
  • Blurred vision
  • Heart rate is below 50 beats per minute at rest
  • Heart rate is above 120 beats per minute at rest
  • Heart rate is above 50 beats per minute more than it was at rest
  • Frequent skipped beats
  • Giddiness
  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Cramping in the arms and legs


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