I mentioned earlier this month that I would write about risk factors for cardio vascular disease. My concern is, of course, that you know your risk factors as you begin an exercise program or even continue what you are doing. No cardiac events in the gym please!
#1. Age: 45 and older for females and 55 and older for males is a risk factor that you can't do anything about.
#2. Cigarette smoking: If you smoke or have quit within the last 6 months, that's a yes.
#3. Sedentary lifestyle: If you have not exercise at least 30 min. a day for a least 3 days a week for the last 3 months, you have a sedentary lifestyle.
#4. Obesity: A body mass index of 40 inches (waistline measurement) or more for men and 35 inches or more for women is one way to determine obesity. Get the tape measure.
#5. Hypertension: Systolic blood pressure 140 or above and diastolic 90 or above or taking medication for high blood pressure is a yes.
#6. Cholesterol: In general if your total is 200 or above, the LDL-C 130 or above, your HDL-C 40 or below or if you are taking medication to lower cholesterol, this is a risk factor.
#7. Prediabetes: If your fasting glucose is greater than 100, it's a yes.
This is just the beginning for your consideration. If you find yourself answering yes, discuss this with your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Better now than later.
There are also some online tools that give you an idea of where you stand. Check out www.preventdisease.com or www.framinghamheartstudy.org. Both of these offer questionnaires with results when you submit to see where you stand.