Healing your heart at home: Advice from the cardiac rehab team


The exercise our bodies need remains a constant, despite the temporary closing of our gyms, yoga studios or basketball courts. We encourage patients to get 30 to 60 minutes a day of moderate-intensity physical activity, at least five days a week.

Increasing your activity can include walking two or more flights of stairs, yard work or walking outside. To minimize the risk of injury, we advise low-impact aerobic activity. We also recommend a gradual increase in your physical activity over time. We caution patients to avoid performing unaccustomed vigorous physical activity.

To avoid injury, we recommend including a 5-10 minute warm-up and cool-down before and after exercise. Stretching and flexibility exercises are also recommended two or three days a week.

Examples of exercise to do at home:
  • Walking/jogging

  • Walking flights of stairs

  • Riding bikes – stationary or outside

  • Body weight exercises (wall push-ups, squats, lunges, jumping jacks, sit-to-stands)

  • Home exercise videos

  • Free weight exercises

Basically, exercise that involves the major muscle groups and is continuous or rhythmic in nature is recommended.

To help yourself be accountable, check in with a friend or family member about your daily workouts or record them on paper or online. Find what works for you to provide you with the reinforcement you need to keep getting your workout.

Carlos Albor, BS, CCRP, Clinical Coordinator, in Cardiopulmonary Rehab