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Sunday, March 29, 2009

CYCLING SAVED MY LIFE!


Last Monday, nearly hours after posting about the homebuilt frame extension, I went to bed and I got the surprise of my life. I was in excruciating pain by what turned out to be a clogged artery induced, full blown, heart attack.

The next 2 hours and 30 minutes was handled by a team of dedicated and truly professional health care personnel. From the 2 EMT's who got me to the right hospital fast, the Nurses and Doctors who then took care of my problem right there and then the ones who took care of me afterward were all fantastic. Many thanks to the CCU staff at The Royal Victoria Hospital.

I woke up the next morning in my hospital bed with some left over pain asking myself the dreaded question, how much damage does my heart have? I know for a fact that surviving a heart attack is one thing, but the damage caused to the heart is also something to consider and this will impact the rest of your life.

My life was not a very healthy one. I had a terrible diet, until recently I was a pack and a half a day smoker for 25 years and I never spent any regular time at a gym or sports. I was expecting to pay the note at some point for this type of living, but not at 43! Anyhoo, results came back and the Doctors told me I had very minor damage and that with a better diet,some exercise, a bunch of pills taken every day, I would be OK.

According to them, my saving grace was the fact that I've biked on a regular basis since my late twenties. I still have a week of staying put, but I can't wait to get back on the saddle...Doctor's orders!

So keep riding, it's so good for you, it might save your life!

Godspeed.

Gerry :)

22 comments:

Sue M. said...

Congratulations! Keep riding...it will only get better. And do the other advice, too!

WestfieldWanderer said...

Glad you pulled through!
You're living proof of the dangers of not cycling!
Get well soon.

John Fink said...

Man, I better get on the bike!

Big Oak said...

Glad to hear you're going to be OK. Hope you are able to get back out on your bike again soon!

Bill

suzanne31381 said...

I've been a silent reader for quite some time. Now I just have to say thanks for the blog (I've referred all my biking friends to it), and I'm so glad you are okay. Best wishes for a quick recovery and positive lasting life changes as a result of this experience.

Mike J said...

Glad you pulled through on the heart attack. I'm hoping that biking pays off like that for me some day.

James said...

I'm glad to hear you're alright. Must have been a pretty harrowing experience.

ianchowmiller said...

Wow!!! So glad you're okay. And the first post I read after my server figured out its mistake when blocking this site is that you are okay after a heart attack. Good post to read!!

Anthony said...

Gerry,

My Friend (it's a one sided friendship, I visit your site weekly because I am working on a Schwinn Speedster - you don’t know me but you helped me a 100 times so far!),

I really wish you a speedy recovery and hope that you are feeling better soon. You are in my prayers! God Speed and hope you're back in the saddle soon.

Thanks for everything! Get well soon!

Anthony
antced1@hotmail.com

P.S. Please email if you're ever in Philadelphia, Pa, USA. My treat for a Pat's or Gino' Steak.

Gerry Lauzon said...

Thank you all for your kind words and I want to let you know that my recovery is going very well. I'm putting the finishing touches on my cruiser extension and I should take it out for it's first ride (and mine for that matter!) on Friday. I'll let you all know how it went.

Gerry :)

Anonymous said...

Glad you're Ok. I found your blog recently, and the how-to advice and encouragement to just get out and ride are great. I'm not sure what we would do if you weren't around. Take care.

Anonymous said...

Get well soon! Thanks for your great work.
I just randomly came back to your Blog
after years; but now I will be back more
often and I wish you the best.

Johnny said...

I'm very sad to hear what happened to you, but I'm glad you're Okay and still pedaling:) Goodspeed to you, sir:)

Tom Reingold said...

Goodness, heart attacks are always a surprise. I'm sorry you went through that, but I'm glad your conditioning helped you GET through it.

Tom
Maplewood, NJ

Tom Reingold said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Neil Jenkins said...

Hey Gerry,

Popped over to view your page to solve a problem (as is often the case) and read with concern about your heart attack a month or so ago. Blimey!!

You seem to have come out of it in fairly good shape considering the seriousness of the episode, but that doesn't change the fact that you and your family have been through a very scary and worrisome (not to mention painful) time. I too am 43 and it's a stark reminder to me to keep looking after my body as best I can.

Keep recovering fast, Gerry. You're a much loved and appreciated fella in this neck of the internet woods.

And my bike problem? Nah, it can wait. Kinda puts everything into perspective, doesn't it!

Very best wishes,
Neil

Gerry Lauzon said...

Thank you for all the kind words. I got a few miles in since last week and the riding is good. Even managed some miles on the the Raleigh Sports one speed. The legs are coming back and the heart seems to be doing fine.

Gerry :)

Anonymous said...

Wow...just came across your heart-attack whilst searching for tips on maintenance. Hope it all works out ok mate!

Steve in Wisconsin said...

Best wishes on a speedy recovery from another silent reader. Your site has always been upbeat and positive in addition to its usefulness. Its a breath of fresh air in an era of purposeless criticism and negativity. God speed to you. And thanks.

Gerald said...

It's been almost 2 months and my recovery is, I think, complete. I just did a 30 km ride on the big stretched cruiser yesterday at a very decent pace. I feel fine and so is the ticker.

Gerry :)

Pierre! said...

Hello Gerry,

Glad to hear of your recovery! June 23rd will be my one year anniversary of my "heart attack"... Keep after it! There is lots you can do to reduce your risk, and get you off those blood meds that give you the whirlies when you stand up...

Check out a book by Dr. Esselstyn - you can review it at:
www.heartattackproof.com

Its a pretty massive lifestyle change, but it feels like it's working for me.

Congrats on making it this far, and hope to hear about your "1 year party" next March

Pierre!

Gerald said...

Thank you Pierre, I will definitely check it out.

Gerry :)