Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab Summer Challenge – Route 66 Style


Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab helps patients reduce their risk of future heart events, alleviate pain from heart surgery and improve recovery and symptoms of disease. Patients come to weekly rehab sessions to help their hearts and their lungs, but at Hillcrest Claremore they have an opportunity to be engaged with the program for another reason – the annual Summer Distance Challenge. The challenge encourages patients to get more out of their exercise routines and push themselves a little harder. This year the theme was “Route 66.”

“Exercise can be boring and you can get into the same routine day after day,” says cardiac rehab nurse Angela Messimore, RN. “This yearly contest gets patients more engaged with each other--sparking a rivalry or just cheering each other on.”

Friendly competition, Messimore says, is not only fun, but helps patients’ rehab. “The contest challenges the patients to do a little more time on each piece of exercise, increase their workload on an exercise piece, try a new piece of equipment to gain more distance, and maybe incorporate another day of exercise into their regimen,” she adds.

The challenge ran June 3 to Aug. 30, during which patients and staff logged the miles exercises during rehab sessions. A total of 22 patients participated in the challenge. Every stride, step and movement forward was tracked on each piece of equipment. Every two weeks results were posted, notifying patients of where they stood in the challenge.

This year, Nancy Davis, with a total of 350.9 miles, took home the title of the 2013 Summer Distance Challenge winner, followed by Kenny Ralph with 342.53 miles in second place and Bill Hurd with 327.3 miles in third place. Congratulations to everyone who participated!