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The cardiac dangers of excess exercise

Regular exercise is essential for health. I’ve taken to prescribing daily exercise as a drug. I’ve even written it on a prescription pad for effect. I see exercise as medicine, a safe medicine, an effective medicine. That means, like all drugs, exercise can be overdosed. The challenge is knowing the upper limit. How much is […]

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Does exercise have to look a certain way? Can Yoga deliver heart health?

One of my good friends, a guru of sorts, once told me during a ride that things change. He was 50 years-old at the time and the change he was referring to was cycling abilities and priorities. At the time, I was at the peak of my cycling prowess; we were part of strong masters […]

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Endurance exercise and the heart — a mention in the New Yorker

Do you exercise a lot? Have you been at it for years? Are you the type that rides around the neighborhood to make a 98-mile ride into a century? Do you get squeamish if you can’t exercise for 24 hours? Are you curious about that beautiful machine in your chest? You know, the rhythmic coordinated […]

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Exercise, over-indulgence and atrial fibrillation — seeing the obvious

If you like thinking and writing, few topics are better than the excess exercise and heart disease story. Indeed it is a matter for the curious. Two studies published last week in the British journal Heart addressed the relationship of exercise and heart disease. (See references below.) Although these studies garnered mainstream media attention they […]

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Prolonged exercise leads to heart damage — pro/con debate

Dr. Larry Creswell, of the Athlete’s heart blog, just posted an interesting debate from the Journal of Physiology. The question of whether longterm endurance exercise leads to heart damage is a hotly contested issue in cardiology. For those who are curious about this intriguing topic, his links lead to very readable prose. Larry suggests paying […]

Cycling Wed Exercise Healthy Living

Exercise and the heart — keep it simple

Exercise is a white-hot topic. We must talk more. This comment on my Facebook page only strengthened my resolve to clarify things. Not to be flip, snarky (or for that matter even just plain dense) but part of me is asking what’s the point of this? It brings up far more questions than it answers. […]

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Cycling Wed: Athletes with large atria and the effect of exercise on BP

Hi all, I know; it’s Thursday morning and this is supposed to be Cycling Wednesday. My excuse is a good one. I bought an Iphone 5 yesterday and then became hypnotized by the inanimate object. Time flies with a new Apple product. Bedtime came and I said, “Crap…it’s Wednesday!.” Anyways, I was scanning the recent […]

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CW: It’s settled–Long-term extreme endurance exercise is not heart healthy

My inbox lit up this week with links to mainstream media reports that extreme exercise causes heart damage. Sure enough, a group of US researchers published an exhaustively complete review article on the Potential Adverse Cardiovascular Effects from Excessive Endurance Exercise. (Full text available.) Though published in the modestly circulated journal, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, this […]

Cycling Wed Exercise inflammation

Cycling Wednesday: How exercise ‘hardens-up’ our cells…

Yesterday, I wrote about how stem cells might some day offer heart patients a mulligan. But even the most optimistic optimist would agree that realizing this dream is futuristic. For now, and the near future, we have to play them where they lie. In real-life, do-overs for heart attacks and strokes happen only on rare […]

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CW: Writing about the science of exercise

It is risky. Stay fresh. Avoid repeating yourself. Don’t rant. Never preach. These would be the ‘rules’ of supposedly good blogs. And, of course, doctors that dare to take a stance on health issues risk being perceived as pretentious. I get this. So it is with trepidation that I write a follow-up to last week’s […]

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CW: More bad news for the (extreme) endurance exerciser

Dear Endurance Athletes, Accept an apology in advance. You have endured so much from me. Sorry. Let’s at least start by agreeing that I can’t control the data. Yes, you guessed it. There is unfortunately more bad news pertaining to the deleterious effects of endurance exercise on the human heart. Again, I am sorry. Maybe […]