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What are My Goals?  Do You have Goals?? July 6, 2017

What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.                    Zig Ziglar

I have been a goal setter and goal planner for a long time. In my younger life my goals..or my written goals were almost exclusively sports , athletics and physically related. A few examples included improvements specific stats in a sports situation or reaching a target weightlifting maximum during offseason workouts.

There were some goals in other settings, usually academic but they were barely written done and if so, the details and plans were limited to the target accomplishment but with limited details about the work required.

Later in life I wrote out some goals and even accomplished them. This was limited in scope and success. 

I have now created a broad set of goals and my current health/ physical goals have taken on a new importance. The March 2017 diagnosis of HEART FAILURE, created an urgency that a “generic” weight loss / GET FIT goal may not have. Doctors have suggested diet recommendations and limitations as well as some exercise, they have agreed to my general plan of getting back into shape as I drop weight and move towards a physical situation that is most healthy.

    My physical goals include a variety of the following….
  1. Weight loss of 150+ pounds (good progress..)
  2. Return to running and participate in a few races for fun and travel
  3. Participate in group fitness classes and/ or events
  4. Have great energy, good rest and a positive attitude because I feel great

Time to get to the gym, us ether elliptical, now,that I can, and work on the tower and bike as well.
@martyroddy

 

Breakfast Casserole- Leftovers Tomorow or for Lunch-Oatmeal(starch) and fruit June 12, 2017

I,have started with a specific diet with guidance from the,books and recipes of John ( and Mary)  McDougall. Dr.McDougall is a proponent of a starch centered plant- based diet. As a physician he has seen many patients benefit from this diet and do so for a long time.  It is a much easier lifestyle to adhere to since it is very satisfying with volume of healthful nutritious food. The starches as a foundation provide that satiety as well as fiber and nutrients. 

Potatoes and sweet potatoes plus winter squash , whole grains and legumes fill us up AND release nutrient rich energy.

What to eat in the morning? ( or save for lunch!!!)
        OATMEAL

Baked Oatmeal Casserole

Prep: 15 min. Cook: 10 min.                Serves:4-6

This is a great recipe to make the night before, then just heat in the oven for a rich and hearty breakfast. 

Ingredients: 

1 cup oatmeal

1 cup rice milk or non-dairy milk

1  cup water

2 Tbsp maple syrup or agave

1/4 cup walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup dried cranberries, currants, or chopped dried apricots

1/2 box oil-free, whole-grain cereal, crushed

sauce-

3 bananas

1cup crushed pineapple

1tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup orange juice or apple juice

1/2 cup blueberries

DIRECTIONS:

Combine all the oatmeal ingredients in a sauce pot and simmer, on low heat, until done, about 6 minutes. Pour into a casserole dish and top with the crushed cereal. Cover and refrigerate until morning.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, until the cereal is just starting to turn brown. While the casserole is baking, make the sauce. Combine all sauce ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Serve the sauce over the hot oatmeal casserole (the sauce may be heated if you prefer).
@martyroddy

 

MAGNESIUM Poor ? , Eat Up for Your Heart and Body June 5, 2017

I recently wrote about potassium and what to eat to increase and/or maintain necessary levels in the body . Magnesium is a mineral that is also extremely important for physical health and vitality and especially for heart health.

Magnesium is in demand for enzyme function throughout the  body- at least 300 enzymes utilize Mg to function properly. There are hundreds ( thousands) of proteins that need Mg for proper binding function.

The heart uses more magnesium than all other organs and the maintenance of proper serum Mg levels limits promotes vigorous heart health and reduces high blood pressure, prevents arrhythmia ,cardiovascular disease and even sudden cardiac death.

Many people are deficient in magnesium ( 50-80%) and are at risk for diseases and symptoms related to magnesium deficiency.  
FOODS FOR MAGNESIUM:

  • Dark leafy greens – spinach,chard, kale, mustard…
  • Nuts and seeds- almonds, walnuts, macadamias,pumpkin, sunflower, sesame
  • Bananas
  • Coffee- black 
  • Cacao and Dark chocolate
  • Beans/ Legumes- black beans, kidneys, pintos….
  • Whole grains
  • Figs
  • Potatoes 
  • Brassicas – broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale
  • Mackerel 

Here is some video information on Magnesium and the heart:


@martyroddy

 

Heart Failure, Heart Health and Nutrients- POTASSIUM May 31, 2017

Now that I am continuing my challenge with heat failure, and since I am continuing to use diuretics the potential for flushing necessary nutrients from my system grows every day. 2 of the more important minerals are POTASSIUM and MAGNESIUM.  This post will focus on getting enough potassium back in our bodies.

 

Low potassium levels can cause muscle weakness and heart rhythm disturbances. Reduced potassium can lead to -HYPOKALEMIA-  which can cause muscle cramps, muscle aches and muscle weakness(as noted above). The heart is a muscle so cramps and weakness can be problematic. Another symptom is heart palpitations.

We can end up with reduced/low potassium as the result of the medicines we take to deal with our cardiac issues.

With all this concern- where can we get potassium in our diet?

POTASSIUM N FOODS:

  • potatoes and sweet potatoes    600-900 mgs (depending on serving size)
  • beans                                             400-600
  • dried apricots                              500-1500
  • avocado                                        700-900
  • banana                                          400
  • dark leafy greens                         150-200
  • Squash-winter                              350-500
  • mushrooms                                    100-300

 

With a thoughtful but simple combination of the foods we can rest assured that we have enough potassium in our system to prevent any serious challenge with our hearts.

What will you add to your daily diet?

@martyroddy

 

What  a Heart Failure ? May 26, 2017

Now that I am dealing with, treating this diagnosis and was surprised by it when I went to the hospital in March. Initially I was relieved to hear a diagnosis and a couple of doctors and nurses tell me that it can be overcome.   

They gave me that hope without any deep information nor explanations. Eventually a few folks from Social work, social service offices brought information about Heart Failure. It include a cursory description of what it was and a little bit how it gets started. The information also had suggestions for living with it and treating it.

  • Heart failure is a chronic, progressive condition in which the heart muscle is unable to pump enough blood  to meet the body’s needs for blood and oxygen.      
  • the heart can’t keep up with its workload.      
  • The heart is a muscle that pumps blood to the other organs of the body, but “Heart Failure” doesn’t mean the heart has stopped working. It means it can’t pump properly

Certain behaviors can lead to heart failure:

  • Eating foods that are high in salt, fat, and cholesterol 
  •  getting enough physical activity. 
  • Being overweight

I found a few videos with some basic info.

– this first one was interesting as I started my journey with symptoms of bronchitis and ended up in the Emergency room. Unable to breathe with A FIB AND heart failure.

-The following has a few useful tips for dealing with and living with heart failure.

@martyroddy

 

Heart Failure, Exercise and Improvement May 16, 2017

Now that I have heart failure and am dealing with it , I will write about it as I work to,overcome and live a long happy, healthy life.

I have been living with the diagnosis for 2 months now and my exercise has helped my head and my heart and even my fat butt…. keep the blood pumping and clean as I exercise and ear right….diagnosis of no more failure….just a healthy 54 year old heart.
The following video discusses some basics for the use of exercise to improve life after the diagnosis.

Fun info on overcoming the challenge and training for Ironman…or life…..QUOTE: You can get off the couch and live the life you want…even with heart disease.

@martyroddy

 

WAKE UP CALL -Let the Journey Begin March 30, 2017

Filed under: diet,Emergency,fitness,Health,Hiking,Recovery,Results,Safety,Walking — bigfootmarty @ 5:05 pm
Tags: , , , ,

While struggling with a cooled and thin bronchitis this winter I was eagerly looking forward to putting my sneakers on and getting out on the road. I had recently strengthened my knee and was able to get going as soon as I COULD. 

BUT things went awry as th cold and bronchitis seemed to let up but my breathing never returned. In fact, it got worse and I could not grab a breath after 10 or a dozen steps. So I finally bit the bullet and went to the hospital emergency room.  Thank Goodness I went to the ER that day. I may not have been at deaths door , I am now in a much better health position with hope and possibility.

The date was March 7,2017 at approximately 10 am, I entered the University of Virginia ER. In the next hour I gave blood was plugged into machines and had exrays of my chest. My ch st/ heart was soon examined with sonogram and I was disappointed diagnosed in heart failure and Atrial fibrillation. This was due to extreme fluid build-up…..and I was PUFFY, like a big S’More. 

An IV was started and diuretics were administered and I started producing fluid (urine) boisterously and I soon had lost 12 pounds ( 32hours) . Shortly I started feeling better and then my breathing improved. It was not good nor was I healed but WOW did I feel better. 

The diagnosis of heart failure was shocking but possibly motivating. As long as no damage is found I/ we can overcome this and build back to a healthy and strong heart and exercise into a long active life.

When I got out of the hospital I spent a few days resting and then got back into life in a reasonable way and have even started working out. I have completed several fun walks to  get the foundation set for future walking and running. As a lifelong competitive athlete and multiple marathon runner it might be tempting to push my workouts BUT so far I,have taken it easy and happily completed 1/4 mile walks with some hills for strength . 

REPORTS—–

A. Lungs feel strong and seem to be functioning properly

B. Heart beating easily

C. Legs getting stronger after extended period with limited exercise

D. Leg exercises are feeling good and will be upgraded/ increased

E. Abs exercise feels good to date.

Finally continued use of diuretics to reduce/ remove fluid have resulted in a ” weight loss” of approximately 80 pounds to date .  The time to lose real weight( body fat ) is now as I have set a goal that should work nicely for long term healthful life.

As they say, A JOURNEY OF A THOUSAND MILES STARTS WITH A SINGLE STEP….. I hVe taken the steps…..now some more….

@martyroddy