I wanted a place where we could get advice and support.
SOLB I can't give a medical opinion but I am a physio currently working with people post heart-ops like valve replacements. I can't comment on your specific situation but it's very much the norm to have a structured programme to build up your exercise level after the op. Once your op comes up make sure you get referred onto it and get plenty of advice from the physio team. Google Cardiac Rehabilitation if you want to read more on it.
Any idea which hospital will be doing the op?
SOLB, I had 6 months off this year having contracted viral myocarditis - I couldn't even sit at the computer without being breathless.
If you've got valve problems, based on my own experience, it's really not worth pushing it. Spend your time getting the operation sorted out, then look at recuperation. There are some good websites out there and the BHF has some good info / contacts re exercise.
I also do HR training - proved invaluable in helping me not only identify the problem but provided the cardiologist with reams of evidence without necessitating stress test. You might want to consider HR training for a number of reasons, not least the obvious, as it recommends slower runs at recovery (easy) pace rather than a lot of "bust-a-gut" stuff, which, following cardiac surgery, may not be recommended.
PS I saw my team more locally, but they're based out of Southampton - which has a good reputation I believe.
I really think that you should accept your current limitations and work with those. Keep exercising, but at an appropriate rate rather than pushing yourself. I was in my taper for a mara when I first noticed my symptoms and I was determined not to let them stop me racing, but in the end, I had no choice.
It's not defeat, it's just pragmatism. Far better that you continue exercising at an appropriate level than you push yourself to a point that might have more serious consequences for your health. You are going to have the operation, so you will get better. The reason that you are struggling is because you are ill, not unfit.
I started running 5 years ago, since then, I've probably spent more time off my feet than on and have yet to complete an entire year of training. It's all due to circumstances beyond my control and ironically, none of which has had anything to do with running. However, I see running as something long-term, so when things are going well, I make the most of them, when the brown stuff hits the fan, I just accept it, adapt my training if I can, then look to pick up again whenever - even in this case, starting back pretty much at scratch.
I really think that it would be better for you physically and psychologically if you could keep exercising but in a way that doesn't leave you struggling, out of breath and feeling that it was a "horrible session".
But keep pushing on the operation, I had no end of prejudice being female - was even told "If you'd been a man, you'd have been admitted to hospital immediately."
Talk to the British Heart Foundation - I got great advice from them. I had a particularly stupid and useless GP who diagnosed my problems as asthma, in spite of all the evidence to back up my feelings that it was cardiac related. I even passed out in the surgery, due to lack of oxygen, having walked into the surgery. He explained that as "nerves".
This website is particularly useful too - it was suggested to me by some of the forumites who have had cardiac problems.
I had the same, when I showed him my HR recordings for my runs, including @ 10+m into the run (when HRs were off the scale) he just argued that I was "anxious" which was making my HR go up by 20 - 30+bpm, my fingers go an odd colour and causing the chest pain and breathlessness.
He is not a runner, so I explained to him that I do not get anxious about running, quite the opposite, it is relaxing and I certainly don't get anxious mid-run.
I ended up in A+E over Christmas (999 jobbie). It was the (female) nurse who agreed with me that it was more likely to be cardiac, she suggested myocarditis and to push my GP for an appointment. The GP didn't do his bit and it was eventually a female radiologist who happened to answer my call (in desperation to the hospital) who took pity on me and scheduled an appointment. Coincidentally, she conducted the scan, concurred with the myocarditis diagnosis and showed me the evidence on the screen.
Mentioned it to the GP's surgery - who closed ranks. According to them, it was more sensible to rule something (asthma) out before ruling something in - regardless of the wasted time. Anyhow, did the asthma / lung tests to discover that I've got the lung capacity of someone 30 years younger than me. As if I couldn't have told them that.
Actually thanks for waking up this thread, I wouldn't have read it otherwise! It's a really interesting thread, thank you for your honesty SOLB! You're very courageous. I'm glad to hear you're feeling more positive.
I'm concerned that two people have that their GPs said that they had fainted due to "anxiety", because you can't faint due to anxiety unless it's a blood phobia. How much are GPs being aid these days...?
It is interesting that when people ask how you are, they don't really want the truth and we're brought up to not be that honest really. I don't mean you specifically, just everyone.
I don't know much about blood sugar levels, apart from I like eating and reducing my sugar intake helped me massively. Feeling dizzy can be a sign of anxiety (along with others) but your body won't collapse when you're more alert and full of adrenaline! Maybe they don't teach this basic thing to GPs...
I also waffle it seems, but the Dalai Lama tells me to be non-jugement (not personally, though that would be amazing!).
Hope you're well and not running too hard!
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