Heart Health Challenge

It's never too early to start thinking about your heart.

Do you have the Heart to Start?

hearttostartDon't let the short days and bad weather keep you from starting an exercise plan. All you need is a goal, a plan and a whole lot of support. Join the Providence Heart to Start program and train to run or walk a 5K, 10K or half-marathon in February 2015.

The program is free and kicks off Wednesday, Nov. 19 at 6 p.m. at the track at Duniway Park located at Southwest Fourth Avenue and Sheridan in Southwest Portland. Group workouts continue every Wednesday through Feb. 11.

Dr. James Beckerman from the Providence Heart and Vascular Institute trades his white coat for a coach's whistle every Wednesday night at 6 p.m. at the track at Duniway Park in Southwest Portland. He leads a group workout, shares important health information and provides encouragement and fun!

Heart to Start is focused on making exercise enjoyable, achievable and inclusive. It is a free program and includes training plans, weekly group workouts, a team t-shirt and expert advice.

Get inspired by some of the participants from previous years in this video and watch the team complete their goal.

Here's how to get started:

  1. Review the workout plans and see which distance is right for you. Consider training for a 5K if you are new to walking or running.
  2. "Like" the Heart to Start Facebook page and follow us on Twitter. Connect with other team members, share victories and challenges and find inspiration and motivation to achieve your goals.
  3. Sign-up for the Heart to Start 5K, 10K or the Heart Breaker half-marathon on Feb. 15. Registration will be open in mid-November.
  4. Join us on Wednesday evenings at 6 p.m. at the Duniway Track.

At Providence, we encourage you to think more about your health. February is American Heart Month, a nationally observed health awareness campaign sponsored by the American Heart Association. Providence’s heart month challenge will help you become more aware of how to have a healthy heart. We have tips to keep you motivated during heart month and throughout the rest of the year. Visit this page often to get the latest information about heart health.

Sign up for our patient e-newsletter.

Ask An Expert

The best sites for the heart-healthy diet

The digital marketplace now offers an abundance of health and diet management tools, from websites to monitor your weight to smart phone apps that allow you to take a picture of your food and get an instant calorie count.

Ask an expert: Getting fit for a 5K

Q: “Some of the healthiest people I know are runners. I’ve never been much of an exerciser, but I’ve decided that I want to be more like them. To get myself motivated, I’ve committed to running a 5K three months from now. What’s your advice for going from zero to 5K in 12 weeks?”

Forms Instructions

Heart to Start 5k Training Plan

Use this plan to help you go from the couch to running (or briskly walking) a 5k race of your choice with less than 3 months of training time.

Proprietary Health Article

Heart-Healthy Nutrition

From the Northwest Guide to Heart-Healthy Living to expert advice from our professional nutritionists, we have information that will help you maintain your health without sacrificing the pleasure of great meals.

Preventing Cardiac Risk: Lifestyle changes

Lifestyle changes that will help you reduce your chance of heart attack or stroke.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Before starting an exercise program

It is always important to consult with your physician before starting an exercise program. This is particularly true if any of the following apply to your current medical condition:

Tips for heart-healthy eating

Following are common questions about the relationship of nutrition to heart health, answered by Valerie Edwards, MS, RD, LD, outpatient nutrition therapist, Providence Nutrition Services.

Get your day off to a heart-smart start

Do you routinely bypass breakfast in the morning? Your heart might like you to reconsider.

A large-scale study from the Harvard School of Public Health found that men who regularly skipped breakfast had a 27 percent higher risk of having a heart attack or dying from coronary heart disease than those who ate breakfast.

Five things to know about heart disease

The risk factors for cardiovascular disease and heart attack can be both obvious and hidden.– By James Beckerman, M.D., cardiologist

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