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Healthy Heart Survey- Food Questions February 4, 2018

I was playing with a survey from  a friend and thought to make one for my own research and information. Since I am interested in getting healthier and improving my heart I wanted to enlist your help in collecting information .

I have changed my diet and increased the amount of exercise I am doing, my heart has improved but has a way to go.

This simple survey is a baseline/starting point for a project for a heart health website or page.






We Heart a Healthy Heart (sorry for lazy title) December 10, 2017

I recently found out I am in Heart failure {recently = March 2017}. I am in A Fib (Atrial fibrillation ) and the focus on weight loss and exercise is the best thing I can do. I have created some improvement by following doc’s orders taking the medicine and exercising regularly with a good plan.  I have written and will do more on the food and diet component, since I have lost significant weight.

I have watched lots of videos and read books and articles on all of this. I will write more about this and am contemplating the creation of a “gym” specifically for heart patients.

This is a simple exercise plan and idea. Ultimately the best exercise for you is something YOU WILL DO.  And do so consistently.  


Exercise and heart health according to a medical expert. Exercise serves many purposes and can be helpful for diagnosing and identifying heart problems. it will also help measure changes and improvements.



Meat and Dairy Substitutes for Active Plant Based Eaters. September 28, 2017

I have been following a plant based diet. I feel great and I have lost a significant amount of weight. My energy is where it needs to be and stays there all day long. I sleep well and most important my brain is clear all day long.

I have varied the way I eat: high carb vegan, lower carb , raw or mostly raw, and other combinations of raw/ cooked, veggie,vegan and plant based food options.

The attachments summarize a few of the options for preparing, cooking and seasoning the meals.

PERSONAL FAVES- coconut oil, Nutritional yeast and bananas( multiple uses)




Heart Failure,Atrial Fibrillation (A Fib) and Exercise September 27, 2017

Now that I am 6 months beyond the diagnosis of Heart Failure with Atrial Fibrillation I am looking at information about both of these conditions and my personal feelings and health.

I am still in A Fib but I have also lost well over 100 pounds and continue to workout , eat well and workout some more. I am doing a variety of cardio workouts to pump the blood, exercise the heart and of course burn some calories and fat. I am also doing some resistance exercise ( weightlifting and bodyweight moves)  to rebuild the body and muscular system.

I have written about the exercise and will do more in the future but my cardio includes walking outside, rowing on the Concept 2 Erg Trainer, Riding the Cybex stationary bike and the Cybex Arc Trainer ( Elliptical ) and starting on the Nautilus Stairmaster.

Now as Dr.Gupta says in the exercise video I may be able to attempt  a marathon again in the future. I need to take it easy and build up slowly- if I continue with a smart diet( currently plant based low fat diet) and the exercise program and a plan to build up to the kind of training necessary for a 4-6 hour run.

Regardless of that outcome I plan on dropping more of the weight- keeping it off and maintaining healthy lifestyle while dealing with the long term concerns with the heart failure diagnosis and possibly changing/improving on it.

Time to publish and eat a proper meal and later to the gym.

A video with info about A Fib…Not a good diagnosis BUT not the END either.


Exercise and Heart Disease video- good info and a great quote, ” for most, exercise allows for people to fell better AND a longer life than most medication only plans.”

Another good quote- wrong to dive into exercise , gradually increase effort and amount of exercise.





I got a little Focused on the Concept 2 Rower this Month August 29, 2017

During the recent month( ending today , as far as Concept 2 measures, for Dog Days of Summer Challenge) I was ( we were) challenged to row a total of at least 100,000 meters between August 1 and 28. It seemed like  fun idea when I first read about- a distraction from us sweating and a goal to reach for.

I looked at it a little more closely and was shocked to realize that in the 3rd and 4th weeks I would need to row 4300 and 5800 meters per day to reach the weekly/month goals.

Now these totals were not that big for someone who had been rowing hard for some period of time or was in training for races etc, but I just re-started rowing in April following a diagnosis of Heart Failure ( A-Fib)  I started with a cautious and slightly difficult 500 meters. BUT>>>> I decided to  GIVE IT A GO and jumped in and had some fun. Prior to August 1st I had been mixing up my cardio at the gym and doing some resistance work. After week 1 other cardio went away. I needed all of the gym time o get the rowing done…now I was a little upset but then realized it was a good substitute and temporary.

As the 2nd week started ( goal of 20,000 meters) I shifted away from Cybex Arc-trainer and Cybex bike cardio cross training but continued to do some resistance exercises with machines and barbells. The resistance work was also more narrowly focused during this time to Push type exercises (presses and similar moves) since the rower was concentrating on Pull type work.

Then I had to figure out how to do all of this rowing and keep my focus, I utilized the workouts sent out everyday in emails from Concept2  ,http://www.concept2.com/ , and from some suggested interval training workouts found on youtube. In much the same way that a “watched pot doesn’t boil” a watched “workout monitor meter measurement doesn’t add up”  I needed some ways to pass the time as I worked out. I was rowing 20-30-40 or more minutes everyday. As I did the workouts(i.e 2 minutes hard, 1 easy or 250 meters hard and 250 easy…) I was able to achieve the distances required and avoid the potential boredom

The following video is an example of one of the workouts I used.

It was fun and I look forward to the next challenge and I may create one for myself- like building my lifetime total on the rower to the 1 million meter mark. I am above the 1/4 million point after this recent month. My ultimate goal for the current period is reaching my bodyweight from middle high school years (245lbs).

An example of workout I was doing and am returning to ( in addition to rowing or biking or walking) now that I have completed the challenge





Superfoods ?? =Superfitness and Health August 5, 2017

I have been eating better and exercising quite seriously most of my life BUT the focus has gotten tighter in the last few months with a diagnosis of heart failure / atrial fibrillation .  The weight started coming off but a focused plan for the exercise and eating was needed to reach the ultimate weight.

I have written and continue to write about the workouts but this is a quick discussion of the food plan, with a focus on some of the so called “super” foods.

I have not focused on too many crazy foods but on foods that are great for the broad spectrum of nutrients inherent in them as well as additional benefits such as fiber, feelings of fullness and convenience(carry for lunch).


My SUPERFOODS include:

  • cabbage and brussels sprouts
  • turmeric, ginger and garlic
  • rolled oats
  • whole grains
  • legumes/beans
  • sweet potatoes
  • green tea
  • raw nuts and seeds
  • apple cider vinegar
  • citrus fruits
  • PLUS others…

Great list of “super”foods that is reasonable and easily purchased and available.


I don’t eat all of these daily or even weekly but I eat many of them on a regular basis as well as the foods above.  I feel full , my body functions well and I feel pretty healthy all the time.

I am maintaining a relatively stable calorie count along with a solid exercise regimen with significant cardio. If things continue as planned and currently rolling I will reach targets early in the new year.




High Intensity Training???Too much for Heart Just yet??

I have been an athlete my whole life and was doing HIIT type [High Intensity Interval Training] workouts 2-4 days a week in the off season as part of daily training. The did not have a fancy name or label like HIIT but were generally Hard day vs. Easier/Moderate day.  As I am now 54 these workouts take names to emphasize the intensity level.

I am dealing with heart failure and Atrial Fibrillation so my weight loss and fitness efforts are specifically aimed at building and rebuilding cardiac muscle. The aerobic workouts get the heart pumping and calories and fat burning. Ultimately aiming for a target bodyweight as recommended by my doctors and a regular schedule of exercise to keep the heart strong and supple.

The following is one type of exercise I have been doing at the gym. I also use a Heart Rate Monitor ( HRM) to track my heart beat as I exercise and the recovery before the next Intense session.


The first time I did this I was only able to do 3 periods of all out effort, but recently i have gotten to 7, and plan to complete 10-12 intense efforts soon.

I will post some additional HIIT workouts I have done or am planning to try in the future.