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TheSarge

Heart Attacks and stuff

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A buddy just forwarded me an email from the Austin and Central Texas Cycling group that says that 2 riders died of heart attack during last Friday's Fredericksburg ride.  Given that most of the guys I ride with are over 50, that news really hits home.

So I'm wondering, how many of y'all are CPR certified?  Would CPR make a difference if someone is having a heart attack on the trail?  Short of carrying a portable defib in my CamelBak, what are the best precautions to take?

 

 

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I think the best precaution is to go have a stress test done (assuming you can just have one prophylactically) and any kind of imaging available to see if you’re really at risk. A lot of times there will be a genetic component to this as well. 

Having a conversation with a cardiologist is not an awful idea once you hit a certain age. Some may say it’s a waste of money, but not in my opinion. There’s value in a good doctor’s knowledge and experience. I recommend Jerry Gilbert at Austin Heart. 

Depending on someone to know CPR is more of a crap shoot than finding out about your own risk factors and likelihood of a cardiac event, in my opinion. 

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Posted (edited)

If I'm gonna go I want to die face down in the dirt with some buddies around to see it. (spoken in the voice of Walter Sobchak)

tumblr_m4x4waIk2t1qgjqmwo1_400.gif

Edited by Ridenfool
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Yep, stress test is a good idea.

I did get CPR and first aid certification since it was a requirement for the IMBA Ride Lead training.  There are some courses out there that don't take terribly long.  It's something that's good to know at least.

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I took CPR and AED training last year. I think CPR increases chances of survival to ~10% and AED is at least 2-3x that. But all of that assumes that someone can get to you to continue care and get you to a hospital. Given what I saw, I def would want an AED on hand if something ever happened to me.

I took a stress test earlier this year and I just knew that I was a ticking time bomb (I'd consulted WebMD about knee pain, it said heart attack likely) but I was cleared.

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I too have read that the increase in chances of survival from CPR are relatively small which is not exactly comforting so having an AED while not likely would be preferable.  This has been on my mind too recently as I'm getting older (52 this year) and am not sure how safe it is to be running high heart rates during long endurance events and training sessions.  No stress test but I did go in for a heart CT scan but have not received the results yet but hoping it will provide some reassurance. 

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Learning/knowing CPR should just be standard knowledge for folks IMO. Anymore, CPR is basically just chest compressions. No more M2M so much. Although survival chances are small, it's still considered better than nothing. I also believe anyone that is active, should really understand basic first aide. Even if it's just for yourself.

 As for stress tests, if you think you should get one, then you probably should 🙂.

I have had a couple, but I really didn't think it was necessary for the technician to dial 911 even before I got on the treadmill. 

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January 11th, 2013 at 6:35pm while watching Jack The Giant Slayer with my wife...my life changed FOREVER. I got lucky, five stents and no open heart surgery. It was HORRIBLE.

I had just turned 55. The doctor said that the fact that I had changed my diet and lifestyle ten years earlier is what saved my life. I had lost 80 pounds, and started cycling and hitting the gym again. 

Get your physicals and have appropriate testing done as you get older. 

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I rode with one of these guys quite a few times - Kenny Lloyd - great guy. I was actually out on that ride as well but had no idea 2 people died. Don't take life for granted.

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Get a CT scan, it will tell you about artery blockage. That is a precursor to cardiac trouble. Cut down on sugar. And don't worry, fat is not clogging your arteries, sugar is. Any sugar not burned for energy is turned into serum cholesterol, dietary cholesterol (ie. in the food you eat, like bacon,  glorious bacon 🥓) does not end up blocking your arteries. It's all about sugar and carbs, which unfortunately means beer, which is why sometimes I am at the R&I with wine.

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January 11th, 2013 at 6:35pm while watching Jack The Giant Slayer with my wife...my life changed FOREVER. I got lucky, five stents and no open heart surgery. It was HORRIBLE.
I had just turned 55. The doctor said that the fact that I had changed my diet and lifestyle ten years earlier is what saved my life. I had lost 80 pounds, and started cycling and hitting the gym again. 
Get your physicals and have appropriate testing done as you get older. 
So a heart attack and motorcycle wreck?
Damn man.

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk

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Lessons learned so far in this thread:

  1. Statistics for heart attacks while riding road are up. Ride more trails.
  2. CPR is, by a ratio of 10/1, more about reduced guilt for those at the scene (from knowing they tried) than it is about any realistic chance of a successful push-start.
  3. If it is worrying you, get tested. Stress is a killer. If it isn't, the option is to enjoy the reduced stress that can come from the rolling of the dice. Feel lucky punk?
  4. Eat more bacon. 🥓🥓 DUH!
  5. Consider wine as a viable alternative to beer. (how do Cider and Spirits stack up here?)
  6. If taking a stress test, watch the technician. If they pick up the phone, step off the treadmill.
  7. Take it easy and enjoy the ride. The future for geezers trying to push the performance envelope is highly uncertain. If there were ever anything in that wheelhouse for us to prove, embrace the fact that this ship has probably already sailed.
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3 minutes ago, Cafeend said:

So a heart attack and motorcycle wreck?
Damn man.
 

60 now and I've decided that it's game on! No sitting around for me, challenge accepted. My wife wants me to be active, probably because I've made sure she's financially secure if anything happens to me...haha.

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I have a friend in KC who had a stroke 3 weeks ago at 51. Doctors and everyone who knows him said it was stress related and nothing to do with lifestyle or diet. He was in a coma for 6 days.

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45 minutes ago, Ridenfool said:

Consider wine as a viable alternative to beer. (how do Cider and Spirits stack up here?)

Spirits are good, vodka and soda is a really good low carb drink (but not as good as a vodka tonic.) Cider is typically made with apples and they have more sugar than wine (not necessarily better than beer.)

As a rule for me beer, sparingly, typically at an R&I. Red wine over white (tannins and other things in it and I like the taste better). Spirits are probably best for you, but it depends on your mixer, that is where things go south for me.

I do like vodka mixed with Bai Bubbles (https://www.drinkbai.com/bai-bubbles) and topped off with some HEB lime seltzer water. I don't buy the antioxidants stuff, but Bai Bubbles have a good strong taste that stands up to vodka. Sometimes too strong so that is where the HEB sparkling water comes in. Instead of beer 2-3 times a week, it is beer once or twice a week.

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49 minutes ago, JRA said:

I have a friend in KC who had a stroke 3 weeks ago at 51. Doctors and everyone who knows him said it was stress related and nothing to do with lifestyle or diet. He was in a coma for 6 days.

Stress is a killer. Too many people don't recognize the impact that it will have on your body, at any age. That sucks, 51 is really young for something like that.

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We were all good until you food extremists started with the diet of the day, x is evil, etc. 😀

I took CPR (lapsed though) and the stats given for chance of survival with CPR were 10-12%.  AEDs are only for v-fib, so they don't really fix everything.

But ask Stanton Truxillo (old Austin Cycling president) if he wasn't glad someone knew CPR when he had his event during a ride!

100% agree go get a stress-test with an echo cardiogram if you're worried and/or have a family history.

Go get a colonoscopy if you're over 45 and with risk factors.

Then stop worrying about it and go ride a lot and eat all the things in moderation (I believe in Michael Pollan's: real food, mostly plants, not too much)

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4 hours ago, AustinBike said:

. Cut down on sugar. And don't worry, fat is not clogging your arteries, sugar is. Any sugar not burned for energy is turned into serum cholesterol, dietary cholesterol (ie. in the food you eat, like bacon,  glorious bacon 🥓) does not end up blocking your arteries. 

This over and over, regardless of age.

Blockage is scary AF

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4 hours ago, AustinBike said:

Spirits are good, vodka and soda is a really good low carb drink (but not as good as a vodka tonic.) Cider is typically made with apples and they have more sugar than wine (not necessarily better than beer.)

As a rule for me beer, sparingly, typically at an R&I. Red wine over white (tannins and other things in it and I like the taste better). Spirits are probably best for you, but it depends on your mixer, that is where things go south for me.

I do like vodka mixed with Bai Bubbles (https://www.drinkbai.com/bai-bubbles) and topped off with some HEB lime seltzer water. I don't buy the antioxidants stuff, but Bai Bubbles have a good strong taste that stands up to vodka. Sometimes too strong so that is where the HEB sparkling water comes in. Instead of beer 2-3 times a week, it is beer once or twice a week.

learn to love scotch.

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9 hours ago, crazyt said:

learn to love scotch.

Scotch and I have a very difficult relationship that goes back years. The last attempt was in Seoul, and you would not want to be that taxi driver.

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Have they said for certain it was heart attacks that killed them? Just curious since sudden cardiac arrest is not always associated with a heart attack.

As others have said, there are many tests that will help detect the coronary artery disease that often leads to heart attack or stroke. However, even with an excellent pump and normal blood flow, all it takes is a big chunk of that sticky plaque breaking away from your artery wall to kill you in an instant. Of course there other underlying heart conditions that could be lurking as well, and that aren't as easy to detect. Staying very active physically is the best medicine in my book, but I'm not taking anything for granted.      

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We have become a society of sedentary people that think that just going to the gym is going to give us the fitness and health we need. Sitting at a desk all day is one of the worst things to happen to us as a species and one of the major contributors to our decline in health in modern times. Many people who appear to be very healthy and go to the gym to try to replicate a lifestyle that no longer exists are at just as high of risk for heart and health issues as some guy sitting on the couch eating junk food. We were a nomadic species that needed to hunt and forage for our food and that eventually led to farming, but now we no longer need to do these activities due to industrial evolution. Sitting at a desk for hours on end is an unnatural behavior for us and whether we know it or not it creates stress because deep in our minds we know we should be moving. I am far from the poster child for health and fitness, but I have always remained active. I have cycled regularly from the age of about four years old, I have always had a physically demanding job and still do, when the weekend comes I'm usually outside doing yard work or some sort of physical activity. Just try replacing some fence posts or planting a tree or mulching your garden, you'll quickly realize how the gym doesn't prepare you for these activities. I also go for walks with my dogs on a regular basis. Staying active and being outside is one of the best ways to relieve stress and maintain an even level of fitness. JMO. 

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Absolutely dead on.  Getting the nutrition you need for necessary vitamins and minerals and maintaining social contacts (i.e. R & I) can do more than your conventional doctoring, if you get it going ASAP.

Finding a photo for my avatar would be good too.  Apparently I have none on this computer.  Working on it.

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(I believe in Michael Pollan's: real food, mostly plants, not too much)


Real good book. Pay the farmer or pay the doctor.

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk

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