Active throughout his life, Bryan and his family were surprised when he experienced a Heart Attack. His positive attitude and dedication to his health inspires us to continue prioritizing our own. As Bryan says, “Going to the gym should be something you look forward to… I look forward to it because I have a second chance at life.”
Check out Bryan’s full story below!

Bryan’s Story:

From My Heart To Yours

“I have been active in sports and exercise my whole life. I participated in just about every sport through high school and intramurals in college. We lived in Bend for 23 years and got active in coaching soccer to kids and adult softball leagues. I loved the outdoors while living there and got to enjoy skiing, running, golfing, biking, hiking, kayaking, and fishing. I played basketball each week with 30-50 year old guys until my late 50’s, but the knees were starting to be too sore to continue.

In September of 2022, I joined Active Wellness. Being one of the first to join has been great since I have gotten to know most of the staff and we are all on a first name basis. It is more than just a “hi and how are you conversations” too. Trainer David helped me get on a program to get from 21% body fat to 18% and build muscle while replacing the fat, and I had been working out 3-4 times a week with the weights and doing some cardio. But in September of 2023, I had a heart attack while working out at AWC. I had pain in my chest and jaw, and I felt light headed. At first I thought maybe I was dehydrated, so I got off the machine, sat down, drank some water, and then bam, my heart started to fluctuate and I began to sweat. Lucky for us at AWC, Urgent Care is in the building. So my wife and I walked over there and got checked in and after a quick EKG, I was taken by ambulance to St Vincent Hospital and into surgery. Friends and family couldn’t believe it happened to me. They all said that I was the most active of all of us and in the best shape. But heart attacks can happen to those even in their 30’s and 40’s. I happen to have a family history of high Cholesterol so diet and exercise have always been important to me, well probably since my 30’s.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women in America (29%) and it recently became very real for me. I am blessed to be alive and able to work out at AWC. My workouts have moved from 80/20 weights/cardio to the opposite of more cardio than weights. I have a few more weeks of heart therapy at Providence’s Basecamp Clinic, but on my off days, I am at AWC. It will be a year before I can do full out sprints, haha. but my heart is getting stronger. And I am recovering quickly because I was in shape and working out at Active Wellness.

So for those of you reading this, I want to encourage you to keep working out. My therapy heart rate goal is to go 85-90% of my max heart rate for 150-300 minutes a week (avg. 30-60 minutes/day). See for your target. Each person is different, but going to the gym should be something you look forward to and not just a new year’s resolution that falls apart in
just a few weeks or months. I look forward to it because I have a second chance at life. The people at Active Wellness have been great encouragers to my recovery. Thank you to Lilly, Amelia, Erika, Jon, Naomi, David and others for always checking in on my progress. I am also encouraged by my mom and dad working out at Active and they are there at least three days a week too. You are never too young or too old to be Active(ly) Well. I hope to see you at the gym!”

Bryan, a heartfelt thank you for sharing your Active story with us and for opening up about your health to encourage others to continue with their health goals. We are so happy to see you here often and to have you as a member of our community!