Ralph Hitchcock: Fitness offers second life | TheUnion.com

Ralph Hitchcock: Fitness offers second life

Dan BurkhartRalph Hitchcock recovered from a constricted artery.
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Ralph Hitchcock invested in health not knowing his very life would depend it. Fairly active through walking and hiking regularly; a non-smoker with acceptable cholesterol levels and no family history of heart disease; only slightly overweight, a healthy look – these factors would not have suggested Ralph would have a life-threatening heart disease.

Nonetheless, a constriction in the left main artery (called the “widow-maker”) sent him by ambulance to Sacramento. After four weeks of light activity following surgery, he entered the Cardiac Rehabilitation program at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital.

Two months later, he went backpacking, although he did carry a lighter load and monitored his pulse.

Just six months after surgery, he completed a strenuous treadmill test and was released without restrictions! Being in good condition was significant in overcoming the trauma of the operation and speeding recovery.

Healthy habits gave him a second chance.

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