Three days in Napa, California for a Wisconsinite is quite a treat. While the locals found the 60 degree weather chilly – I thought it was a huge relief from the below zero temps we’d been having.
Even more impressive than the weather was the Queen of the Valley Hospital. I was in for the Queen’s Heart Month Wellness evening, but was treated to a tour of the facility and was introduced to many of the doctors and staff. Here, nestled in a small community, is a forward thinking hospital offering cutting edge cardiac care. I visited the Wellness Center– which houses the cardiac rehab program along with physical therapy and other services.
In addition the Center offers a full service health club open to the public.This is where I met Pamela Contos, our next Embrace Your Heart Champion.
Pamela is a personal trainer at the Wellness Center. The picture of fitness she is a strong, energetic and vibrant 54 year old.
Concerned with unusual fatigue after her work outs and having suddenly lost a friend to a heart attack recently, Pamela decided to have herself “checked out.”
She has always been healthy and her numbers (blood pressure, cholesterol, etc) were all good, so her doctor didn’t expect to find anything. But, Pamela’s family has a strong history of heart disease, so her doctor ordered tests, “just to be sure.”
He discovered five blocked arteries.
Pamela traded her work out clothes for a hospital gown and underwent a quintuple bypass!
Pamela uses her experience to point out no-one is immune.
“We all need to pay attention to what is going on inside us and work to reach our own best health.”
Congratulations Pamela – and thanks for all you do!
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Eliz Greene is the Busy Woman’s Guide to a Health. Drawing on her experience surviving a massive heart attack while seven-months pregnant with twins, struggling to lose the 80 pounds gained during her pregnancy, and her background as an adaptive movement specialist, Eliz developed simple strategies and tips to help other busy women be more active, eat better and manage your stress.
As the Director of the Embrace Your Heart Wellness Initiative, Eliz travels the country energizing and inspiring audiences in keynotes and workshops on women’s heart health. She writes one of the top 100 health and wellness blogs. Find more at www.EmbraceYourHeart.com.