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Hal's Lifestyle Choices

  Hal Fullerton
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Blood Pressure:
 162/110 mmHg

Hal's Tips To Control
Your Blood Pressure

My doctor says I have to lose weight, change my diet, get more physical activity and remember to take my pills. Help! It seems like so much. Where do I start?

First of all, remember that it's your health the doctor is talking about. But don't get overwhelmed. You can't get rid of years of unhealthy habits overnight. Start slowly, but start now. Here are three simple tips:

  1. Be specific: Don't say, "I'm going to get more physical activity." Say, "I'm going for a walk today. "

  2. Be realistic: Don't say: "I'm going to walk 3 miles every day." If you're just starting out, say, "I'm going to walk 30 minutes, five times a week. "

  3. Be forgiving: If you miss a day, relax. Just start again the next day.

Take it one day at a time. Remember, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

I get bored walking and, to be honest with you, I don't think I could do that five times a week. Any suggestions?

There are lots of ways to add more physical activity to your life. Here are some suggestions:

  1. Ride a bike.
  2. Join a softball team.
  3. Work in the yard.
  4. Go dancing with your wife, Barbara.

All of these will increase your physical activity — without feeling like "exercise." Mix them up. The important thing is to get started and stick with it.

I've never had to take medicine every day before. What can I do to help me remember to take my pills?

Keep your medicine where you'll be reminded to take it every day, near your alarm clock or coffee cup. Medicine timers and pill sorters can help keep track of multiple medicines that need to be taken. Use a calendar to remind you to get prescriptions refilled. Ask a friend or family member to help you stay on track.

(Some tips adapted from the American Heart Association)

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