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Exercising After a Heart Attack

A woman standing with her bike.

Aerobic exercises improve endurance. They also help your heart, lungs, and blood vessels work better. They make you breathe harder and sweat a bit. Most of your workout should consist of aerobic exercises. Good choices include walking, biking, and swimming.

A man using a weight machine

Strength exercises to build muscle. They can also improve endurance. Examples include lifting weights and using resistance bands.

Group of women stretching.

Stretching exercises increase flexibility, balance, and posture.  Stretching is also a good way to reduce stress.

Safety

  • Follow the guidelines your health care provider or cardiac rehab team has sent you.

  • If nitroglycerine has been prescribed, keep it with you when exercising. Take as directed.

  • Report any changes in symptoms, such as pain or shortness of breath, to your health care provider or rehab staff.

Online Medical Reviewer: Louise Akin, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith, RN, MSN, FNP, CCRC
Last Review Date: 6/1/2013
© 2000-2014 The StayWell Company, LLC. 780 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.