Getting Back Into The water

Hi all

I had a Boston Scientific (AUTOGEN) ICD fitted two years ago here in Ireland. After a year or so of adjustments to the system i was feeling quiet comfortable to get back into some fitness training ,Swimming,weights and Cycling.

A year passed with no ill effects until two weeks ago i had an event while swimming (pusshing it out a bit with new technique) Aparently my HR spiked up to 200BPM and the system went into action and made an atempt to slow down the rate (it is set to have 2 attempts at slowing things down before it shocks) which had the desired effect after the first attemt 

Went back in to see my doctor and technition who decided to lower my up level to 185 BPM. I have not been in the pool again since as it has knocked my confidence a bit ,Have been cycling and doing light weights gently only .

Looking for some advice on whether ,in the words of JAWS the movie "is it safe to go back into the water yet.

thanks from the Green Isle


I *think* you're asking the wrong people - the one in the mirror is key!

by crustyg - 2019-09-05 08:31:36

Hmm, not very confident about this answer: you're a young man in your early 50s and you were previously allowed a max HR of 200 (?) but now it's 185.  Not an unrealistic max HR for your age, and with good A/V sync and healthy heart muscle you should be able to achieve a good maximum cardiac output at that level and keep your muscles supplied. So any exercise you want to do shouldn't be limited by cardiac output.

Except that your heart muscle isn't entirely normal and your box is an ICD.  So for you, exceeding max HR isn't great - two slowdown attempts and then Pow! (sorry, it sounds better than Zap).

I think if it were me, I'd focus on pushing hard in cycling - wearing a chest strap monitor to watch your HR all of the time, as I do - and watch how often you get anywhere near your permitted max HR.  Try and think about what that feels like and then go back into the pool and develop/train/improve keeping in the mind unpleasant consequences of pushing too hard.  For me, if I push too hard and start a tachy episode it increases the chances of pushing myself into Afib - or reduces the time to Afib becoming established.  For you, much more uncomfortable.

I believe that there is at least one HR monitor designed for swimming - this might help you get a sense of how close you're getting to your permitted max.

It's a choice only you can make: stop swimming for ever (in your preferred style/speed) or get back in the water and enjoy and then gently start pushing again - monitored if possible.

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