One word: hilarious. I found myself giggling at every thing the patients did today…and for good reasons. They are so happy and full of life. I cannot wait to be old and have no shame. Seriously, this woman was dancing and singing around the room between circuits like no one was watching.

A little history on cardiac rehab. Six weeks after a cardiac event (MI, cabbage, stent, heart transplant) the patient is eligible for Phase 2 of rehab. This includes a 12 week session of 1 hour low impact exercises and 30 minutes of nutrition education. 3 times a week!

And they love it. Or most of them do. Some men are being forced by their wives. But other than that, the bunch is lively and ready to get started. And I mean it. Class didn’t start until 9, but you better believe they were there at 8:15 to drink the decaf coffee and socialize.

Things they are particular about:
Temperature. It must be below freezing in the room. By government law it must be 70 but by older people law it must feel like 64. Because who wants to sweat when working out in church clothes anyway?!
Music.Oldies are the only goodies and they will have nothing else…unless its Christmas time of course. I believe I heard Splish Splash, My Boyfriend’s Back and Love Shack enough for a lifetime today.
Equipment. They must know who is on the stationary bike. They keep tally on the machines…especially if the machine they want is taken. They will flat out tattle if they don’t get what they want at that moment. It is awesome.
Socializing. One woman was more concerned about telling her friends that her children’s cousin by marriage ex-wife’s daughter-in-law was finally graduating from college this December than pushing the bike pedals.
The Family Tree. They want to know everything about you and then tell you about their life and all medical history. Once again. No shame.
Blood Glucose and Blood Pressure They take BS (if they have diabetes) and BP before and after. They can tell you the number from any day at any time. Oh and for some reason the BS is always perfect until they get to the clinic…then it sky rockets. Not sure what that is all about…….
The Team. On staff is a nurse, exercise physiologist, and dietitian. That’s it. So they get to know each other very well throughout the 12 weeks. The patients want updates on their lives and everything social they can get their hands on.
Interrupting. Oh boy. This one is great. They love doing this and they won’t even feel sorry about it. Poor Debbie, our preceptor, was giving a lesson on seafood and was suddenly not giving a lecture because the patients had taken over. Talking about buying tuna steaks wholesale, how to cook shrimp, and why they can’t eat catfish unless its fried. One patient even answered his phone during the lecture and was holding a full conversation while sitting in the front row. Then proceeded to fall asleep half way through. What a great day!

I’m hoping to get a picture of the exercise room (with no patients in it of course). Liz and I were thrown into the lions den today and did nutrition consults and follow ups but it went great. We are also teaching the nutrition lectures Wednesday. We have 4 classes to teach vegetarianism. Should be an interesting topic…by the way, Debbie already told us they will leave if we mention eating beans without meat. Not surprising! I wouldn’t eat them without meat either.

Also some exciting news! I PR’ed (made a new personal record) this past Sunday in the 10k category. I eliminated 5 minutes from my CCC time in April. Can’t wait for it to get a little cooler so I don’t look like a drowned rat after 1 mile!

Until next time! Eat Smart and Move More.