History repeats itself

How do you prepare for the rigorous physical requirements of high elevation adventure? Strength and endurance are key, but are only part of a more complex equation. How do you prepare for changes in altitude, exposure, diet, etc.? How do you mentally prepare? Learn from others and share what you know about training in advance for outdoor adventures.
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oldranger
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History repeats itself

Post by oldranger » Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:45 pm

After over a year off skiis due to back surgeries and broken shoulder, and paucity of snow this winter I finally planned on skiing last tuesday. But the Sunday before I had a feeling that was similar to one almost 8 years ago. It continued monday AM and my wife drove me to the Emergency ward. I was released from the Hospital on Wednesday with 2 brand new stents in a coronary artery. This artery was different than the one that had a 90% blockage almost 8 years ago and had 2 blockages, 99 and 98%. I complained to the cardiologist last year at this time that I didn't feel right when exercising so he had me take a stress echocardiogram. It showed no abnormality! So I continued to tough it out for almost a year. By christmas break I couldn't get my heart rate over 105 without feeling discomfort in my chest. I thought given my stress test last year that I was just getting old (which I am). But when I felt discomfort when not exercising I decided it was time to go in. The good news is that the day after leaving the hospital I got on the treadmill and after working up to 3mph (that is about as fast as I can walk anymore due to my spinal cord damage) and 8%grade over a half an hour on the treadmill I had no issues sustaining a heart rate of 140 for over 10 minutes with no discomfort. While still in the hospital I told the cardiologist that I didn't think the design of the stress test is appropriate for me. That it was too short and that it was stopped before I could develop symptoms. He responded, that may be the case and they are only 80% accurate. I said great! If I had died I told my wife to put on my gravestone "I told you I was sick!" Anyhow I finally got to go skiing today and discovered that my biggest handicap is the limitations due to my spinal cord injuries. I just can't go very fast. On the other hand I have a great low gear for going uphill.

Lessons for everyone (why I wrote this) 1. Pay attention to your body! I have waited too long both for my spinal cord issues and my CAD. Luckily the effects of CAD can be reversed, especially if caught before a heart attack as in my case. My spinal cord issues came on slowly so it was hard to notice. But the consequence is permanent damage to my coordination of my legs and balance. None the less I am challenging myself to improve the coordination of my legs and my balance. But my rock hopping days and negotiationg talus fields are past. If I had acted on my physical feelings earlier I would not have had close calls and would be consderably more agile than I am today.
2. If your doc says you are ok but you feel you are not be agressive about getting to the basis of what you are feeling.

Don't cheer me on, don't give me condolences just remember the lessons I learned the hard way so you don't have to.


Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!






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c9h13no3
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Re: History repeats itself

Post by c9h13no3 » Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:50 pm

Pics of skiing or it didn't happen :)
"Adventure is just bad planning." - Roald Amundsen
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oldranger
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Re: History repeats itself

Post by oldranger » Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:51 pm

I thought about that but who want to see an old fart and an old broad track skiing?
Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!

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c9h13no3
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Re: History repeats itself

Post by c9h13no3 » Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:58 pm

#relationshipgoals
"Adventure is just bad planning." - Roald Amundsen
Also, I have a blog no one reads. Please do not click here.

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Re: History repeats itself

Post by rlown » Tue Jan 21, 2020 7:01 pm

Mike,

Did they step up a cardiac review annually regardless or ask you to change your diet?

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Re: History repeats itself

Post by Wandering Daisy » Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:03 pm

Maybe at our age (70's), it would be smart to schedule our annual physical just before backpacking season (May, for example), to pick up the start of anything that could be a big problem when way out there in the wilderness, especially if going solo. I usually do mine in January, but I think I will change it to May. Yes, it is too easy to attribute being "off" to just getting old.

I think modern medicine is a lot better at treatment then diagnosis. Now that you are fixed, good luck going forward.

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RichardCullip
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Re: History repeats itself

Post by RichardCullip » Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:47 pm

Thanks you for your story.
Life is good. Eternal Life is better!

Richard

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Re: History repeats itself

Post by Harlen » Wed Jan 22, 2020 5:52 pm

Good Luck with all of that Mike. You sound like my too stoic father, who just toughs things out that really need attention. But then he's almost 90, and says he's lived long enough. You're a long, long way from that-- you got to run out at least 10 more years of backpacking, and then you can focus in on the fishing.... and then you can sit around drinking beer and telling tales for another bunch of years. We hope you recover completely.

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oldranger
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Re: History repeats itself

Post by oldranger » Fri Jan 24, 2020 11:22 pm

Russ,

I had annual visits. New cardiologist wants me to go on keto diet. Partly because my A1C was in his view pre diabetic but not in my regular docs view. But it could still be lower. Anyhow I'll cut my my carbs significantly and get back down to my highschool weight. Then add a few carbs to level off but not near the level I have been consuming. I'm not willing to cut down to 20 carbs a day but will cut down significantly. Kind of became addicted to tortillas and wheat thins in the last year, and need to cut that out. Good thing football season is over cause that kept me in front of the tube snacking. Now my snacks are hummus and veggies. Also cutting down from 7 to to 3 beers a week, at least until summer.
Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!

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Re: History repeats itself

Post by Shawn » Tue Jan 28, 2020 11:51 pm

Sure glad to see you're doing okay and got fixed up with new stents OR. With all of the medical technology these days we should think a blockage at any level should be easy to diagnose, but obviously not.

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