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Real Life Nutrition Questions Answered

Real Life Fitness Questions Answered

Emma Brown
Nutritionist

Janet Aylott
Nutritionist

Kelly Marshall
Fitness Consultant

Q.

Is the manual setting enough after cardiac surgery?

Hi,

I had cardiac surgery last March (2007) and was only able to attend some cardiac rehab sessions. I have since been going to the gym and am feeling fitter and I have lost 2 kg. I am not overweight but have a bigger waistline although I am thin. My question is that all machines do use heart monitors which give rubbish readings as I am on beta blocker heart tablets, so, for example, I only use manual on the treadmill as CV gives higher resistance for the speed I could cope with. Is using the Manual enough for my needs?

A.

Our expert says...

Hi,

Ok, I hope I interpret your question correctly here?.obviously medication like beta blockers is going to skew the heart rate readings and you are right to avoid using heart rate as a measure as this would not be suitable to accurately account for your cardiac history. Manual is a good choice simply because you get the control of everything and can adjust how hard you work as necessary. Just ensure that over time you try to adjust the settings to increase the demand on your heart and continue to increase its strength and fitness.

Manual is more than suitable for your needs and it is simply a matter of you increasing the intensity yourself (whether incline or speed) as and when you feel comfortable with it. Look to work at an effort level that feels like a 5-7 out of 10 and as your heart adapts keep adjusting the speed and/or resistance to maintain a 5-7 work effort.

The only potential negative to using the manual setting predominantly, is boredom, but this doesn?t affect everyone and can be easily overcome by incorporating in other activities such as swimming or cycling or other CV machines.

Hope this helps and keep up the great effort,

Kelly

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