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Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

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Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by phillyheart on Tue Feb 03, 2015 9:07 pm

I have often wondered the role stress has played in my coronary artery disease.

I had a very stressful career, with lots of fatty late night snacks as a sort of reward for making it thru the day.

I had strained relationships with friends and family, and lots of hidden resentments. As a result,
I was too often alone on birthdays, holidays, etc.

I found that often, I had chronic tension in my neck and back--almost never loosening up. Do the
muscle tissues in your arteries act the same way? To this day, I cannot turn my neck fully to the left or right
without pain.

What do others think?

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by twal on Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:04 pm

The fact that you're on this site is a good start. Running, biking, etc. are great stress relievers and help with heart health.

However, the best thing for you may be yoga. I'd like to try it myself but I'm too busy and stressed out. Razz

Active release chiropractic techniques may be good for your neck.

In terms of relationship, I'd pick up a book on what they call "Emotional Intelligence".

It's easy for me to give advice. I just wish I could follow it.


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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by LMRun on Wed Feb 04, 2015 7:33 pm

I agree with Tom, the active release techniques work very well for people who have chronic neck pain.  I saw a sports medicine doctor specifically for the active release techniques, they work.

If you have not had your neck evaluated by an orthopedic or neuro surgeon, I would suggest that.  Not to have surgery but to make sure that it's not just stress causing your neck pain.  You may need MRIs and other tests.  These doctors can prescribe physical therapy, refer you to a pain management specialist, and help you to make the right choices for your needs.  Primary care physicians do not have the expertise you need, they can refer you to the appropriate doctors to sort out all of the ailments you are experiencing.  Sometimes ailments overlap so you have to tackle them one at a time, I know this from personal experience.  

Chronic pain can make the most happy person miserable, chronic pain can cause depression, stress aggravates any physical ailment you may have.  Sometimes, family and friends don't understand what you experience so it's hard for them, they want to help but don't know what to say or do.  

I hope that you can get the appropriate care for your neck, resolve one issue at a time and I bet you will begin to feel better than you have in a long time.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Gary E on Thu Feb 05, 2015 11:08 am

Fabulous advice from Louise. She sure knows her stuff.

Philly, do you ever take an opportunity to "step away from it all"? I know work and financial stability seem paramount in most young people's lives, but have you ever taken an extended vacation? I don't mean a stress-filled one with elaborate travel issues, time-tables to meet, or mandatory family visits...but, say a week or two on a solo hike in the wilderness?

Regarding Tom's "emotional intelligence", do you think I'm too far gone to even bother with a trip to the library to find such a book?
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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by twal on Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:14 pm

Gary, you are too far gone for anything short of a lobotomy.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Gary E on Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:26 pm

I'll grant you that one, Tom, but everyone has to read this story of physical and mental fortitude:

http://www.backpacker.com/special-features/gone-hiking/?utm_source=newsletter01&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter01
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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by EugeneRunner on Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:30 pm

I don't have coronary artery disease, by I'm convinced by heart attack was mostly if not entirely due to stress. My cardiologists feel the same way.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by phillyheart on Thu Feb 05, 2015 1:24 pm

Thanks everyone, for the comments.

One thing I am doing now is going out with web-based meetup groups--not easy for me, an introverted person, and at my age of 64. Very hard to socialize with today's rules. And of course, at first, I have to hide that I have heart disease. But I think new friends and interests, can help.

Another thing I try to do is walk in nature--take long walks to nowhere and let the inner voice in my head give me some good advice.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Dave Tuttle on Fri Feb 06, 2015 6:41 am

Gary E wrote:I'll grant you that one, Tom, but everyone has to read this story of physical and mental fortitude:

http://www.backpacker.com/special-features/gone-hiking/?utm_source=newsletter01&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter01

Great story Gary... I think everyone here has a good measure of Andy's spirit in them too. Maybe not the epic journey but certainly the courage and fight.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Dave Tuttle on Fri Feb 06, 2015 6:56 am

phillyheart wrote:Thanks everyone, for the comments.

One thing I am doing now is going out with web-based meetup groups--not easy for me, an introverted person, and at my age of 64. Very hard to socialize with today's rules. And of course, at first, I have to hide that I have heart disease. But I think new friends and interests, can help.

Another thing I try to do is walk in nature--take long walks to nowhere and let the inner voice in my head give me some good advice.

Hey Phillyheart, you should consider meeting up with this group in Shepherdstown WV this October. You won't find a more friendly understanding group and there's no need to hide your heart disease with us!

We encourage walkers to join us and walkers are welcome on the race course... There should be a lot of them walking in all the events from 5K to the full marathon.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by trishb on Mon Mar 16, 2015 1:00 pm

Welcome Philly, and hope you do join the group in October at the gathering.

I agree that stress plays a huge part in both getting disease and in recovery. If you are tense all the time, that will surely affect your muscles.

Don't worry about changing overnight, but slowly work on taking some stress out of your life. Start by finding friends....one or two is fine. Joining groups such as this are a good start. But finding "real" people right now, would be so much better.
So join a walking group or some other group that shares an interest in a hobby you like.


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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Gary E on Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:03 pm

Great idea, Trish. A few running buddies and I joined an invalid friend for a short hike five years ago, when he was recovering from a surgery. That one incident led to five consecutive years (and still counting) of never missing a weekly hike together. The group also grew to the point we now have a roster of over twenty members, and seldom have less than seven or eight - even on the snowiest, coldest, or rainiest of Wednesdays.
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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by kyoung on Wed Apr 29, 2015 3:07 pm

2015 has been very stressful for me. The company I worked for got in trouble with the IRS and didn't make payroll in February. This was while I was going through a divorce, which is now finalized. I am now selling my house and also starting a new job. So stress, yeah I have a little. Oh, and my back went out again which I don't think is a coincidence. I find peace in returning to running this week after yet another layoff and hope to turn the page on the first part of 2015. Can't get much worst. Applied for Global Heroes today, motivation!

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by LMRun on Wed Apr 29, 2015 5:59 pm

kyoung wrote:2015 has been very stressful for me. The company I worked for got in trouble with the IRS and didn't make payroll in February. This was while I was going through a divorce, which is now finalized. I am now selling my house and also starting a new job. So stress, yeah I have a little. Oh, and my back went out again which I don't think is a coincidence. I find peace in returning to running this week after yet another layoff and hope to turn the page on the first part of 2015. Can't get much worst. Applied for Global Heroes today, motivation!

So sorry you are going through so much, you have had your share for the year. Good luck with Global Heroes, your positive attitude and motivation will get you through it all.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Dave Tuttle on Wed Apr 29, 2015 6:14 pm

Kevin I'm so sorry to hear you've had so much to deal with this year. I can hardly imagine how difficult its been for you... I know you're one tough guy but I hope you'll seek help working through this if it seems like it might help... I'm glad you're running again. I believe running can be very therapeutic in times of great stress and stress IS a killer.

I hope you do get picked for Global Heroes this time around Kevin you certainly qualify and have a very impressive history. How about making our October gathering in Shepherdstown WV another target for motivation... We all would like very much to see you again and it's going to be a great time.

Stay in touch my friend, we're here for you.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by Bean Counter on Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:21 am

kyoung wrote:2015 has been very stressful for me. The company I worked for got in trouble with the IRS and didn't make payroll in February. This was while I was going through a divorce, which is now finalized. I am now selling my house and also starting a new job. So stress, yeah I have a little. Oh, and my back went out again which I don't think is a coincidence. I find peace in returning to running this week after yet another layoff and hope to turn the page on the first part of 2015. Can't get much worst. Applied for Global Heroes today, motivation!

Man, sorry to hear about this.
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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by twal on Thu Apr 30, 2015 10:23 am

About the only major stressor you haven't hit is your own death. Let's hope you avoid that one.

Best wishes.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by kyoung on Fri May 01, 2015 7:29 pm

Thanks everyone. Will pull through! it's the HEART way. That's what draws me to this group. The never give in attitude.

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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by trishb on Sat Jun 13, 2015 6:44 pm

kyoung wrote:Thanks everyone. Will pull through! it's the HEART way. That's what draws me to this group. The never give in attitude.

And don't forget your favorite nagging mother hen is always here for you. Very Happy

I am so sorry to hear about all that has gone on in your personal life.
The emotional and physical toll must have been brutal.

I really hope you get into Global Heros this year.
And if not, then head on over to WV in October. I'l make sure that Gary shares his cheese puffs with you. Very Happy

You take good care of yourself, Kevin! Miss you!!!


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Re: Relationships, Stress and Heart Disease

Post by kyoung on Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:20 pm

Thanks Trish!

Rejected again for global heroes so plan to be in Sheperdstown in the fall. It will be great to see you again! Hope all is well!

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