On-X Aortic Heart Valves: Safer with Less Warfarin On-X Aortic Heart Valves: Safer with Less Warfarin

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First swim meet

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  • First swim meet

    As I mentioned last year, I was forced by arthritis to discontinue running after 40 years, but that didn't stop me, only slowed me down a bit. I walk now, 3-4 miles every other day. Not a leisurely stroll either, 16-17 minutes per mile. Walked a 5K last week at 15:50 avg pace. I've continued doing massive pushup routines, 200+ every other day. And now there's swimming. I've been a casual fitness swimmer all my life, even worked as a lifeguard in my teens. Then I started getting serious about it a year ago, just before I had to terminate the running. I swim a mile+ every other day now too.

    So this past Saturday, just a week prior to my 69th birthday, I entered my first swim meet. Did 50 yard and 200 yard freestyle. Times were pretty slow compared to life-long swimmers, but it gives me something to shoot for in future. Next meet on the schedule is March 5. I'll try a couple different events. And of course, April will bring out the bike again. Can't allow the climate to make me lazy.
    Jack Berkery -- St Jude's aortic valve, Albany NY Medical Ctr, July 26 1991
    Visit my artwork website at -- http://jackpaints.wix.com/jackberkeryart

  • #2
    Great job! I use to swim a mile every day, five days a week, but I have not done as much swimming since my valve replacement. Maybe your example will help renew my enthusiasm. I can only hope!
    Never stand afar and view with fear and trembling that which lies in your way. Face it boldly and see how very small it is, after all.
    VR.com member since 2004, avr in 2005

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    • #3
      Jack - I had the same battle with arthritis. I also swim like a rock, so no joy there. I do, however, enjoy walking almost as much as I enjoyed running. When the weather permits, I often walk up to 4, and sometimes as many as 7 miles a day - at about a 15:00/mile pace. I usually walk on the path in a park near my office - that way I don' t have to worry about traffic, and I can see for a mile or so to avoid bicycles. I find it very relaxing, too.

      I used to do mega-pushups, too. At my peak, I was doing 90-100 daily, in sets of 25. Another bout of arthritis, and I had to stop that for a while. Now I'm back to 2 sets of 35 each morning. The moral of the story is "do something." If we give up and become sedentary, we will become just like all the guys we see around - the ones who can't get across the street without wheezing and struggling. Keep it up, you're way ahead of the game.
      Go Class of 2011!

      Steve Epstein
      9 Years in The Waiting Room, then on February 28, 2011,
      AVR with 23mm Edwards Bovine Pericardial Tissue Valve, Model 3300TFX, Pacemaker - Boston Scientific Altrua 60 DDDR IS-1 and CABG (LIMA-LAD) at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago by Dr. Patrick McCarthy and the most wonderful team of professionals I could ask for. New pacemaker (Boston Scientific L101) and ventricular lead, July, 2016.

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      • #4
        Indeed, love that advice Epstns about staying ahead of the game. You all are great role models for the rest of us.
        Ross procedure, Oct 2007, by Dr. John Oswalt at the Austin Heart Hospital

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        • #5
          Next up was the 1 hour swim. US Masters Swimming has an annual postal event where you swim for one hour, record the distance, and mail it in. Last Friday, Feb 10, I got 2275 yards (1.3 miles) in an hour. With a lap watch there's no need to keep count of time or distance, just check the logs when done. That pace brings my mile time to about 45 minutes, a slow time for experienced swimmers, but I'm a competitive newbie. My goal for the year is a 40 minute mile.
          Jack Berkery -- St Jude's aortic valve, Albany NY Medical Ctr, July 26 1991
          Visit my artwork website at -- http://jackpaints.wix.com/jackberkeryart

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SumoRunner View Post
            Next up was the 1 hour swim. US Masters Swimming has an annual postal event where you swim for one hour, record the distance, and mail it in. Last Friday, Feb 10, I got 2275 yards (1.3 miles) in an hour. With a lap watch there's no need to keep count of time or distance, just check the logs when done. That pace brings my mile time to about 45 minutes, a slow time for experienced swimmers, but I'm a competitive newbie. My goal for the year is a 40 minute mile.
            45 minute mile for someone starting out is pretty good, and I'm confident you'll make your 40 minute goal easily.
            Never stand afar and view with fear and trembling that which lies in your way. Face it boldly and see how very small it is, after all.
            VR.com member since 2004, avr in 2005

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            • #7
              Great job Jack. You sound like my brother, swimmer in the winter and biker in the summer.

              Martin

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              • #8
                Did the second swim meet today. A little faster on one event, a little slower on the other. There are very few swim meets to get to without driving 2 or 3 hours, as opposed to road races where you can find 2 or 3 nearby every weekend. So it will be June before I get to do the next one, an open water swim. I'm thinking triathlon by then, but don't tell, it's a secret.
                Jack Berkery -- St Jude's aortic valve, Albany NY Medical Ctr, July 26 1991
                Visit my artwork website at -- http://jackpaints.wix.com/jackberkeryart

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                • #9
                  Well done. Keep up the excellent work.
                  Ross procedure, Oct 2007, by Dr. John Oswalt at the Austin Heart Hospital

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