Cardiac Rehab Stories

Robin's Story

Jan 1, 2020


Life is busy for foster mom Robin as she cares for four girls – two aged six, one seven, the other ten.  But Robin came close to not being here for her girls when she was diagnosed with 90% blockage in what’s commonly known as the “widow maker” heart vessel, a location that usually results in a fatal heart attack.

“It was caught on an EKG during a screening for an upcoming surgery.  Looking back, the warning signs were there like pain in my legs. I am so blessed that they saw it and were able to take care of it.”

Robin had surgery to clean out the blockage at the DMC Heart Hospital. Doctors recommended cardiac rehabilitation at the Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan (RIM).Three days a week for three months, she hit the gym.

“I never exercised before my surgery, so I started out slowly on the track and worked my way up to a little faster pace on the treadmill.  Over time, it got easier and I was able to do the bike, weights and other exercises.”

Robin says her therapists were great motivators and, taught her the signs of when her blood pressure was high and gave her information on nutrition and healthy eating.  After her rehab ended, Robin liked the program so much, she continued working out on her own at RIM’s Brasza Fitness Center.  

Because of RIM, Robin recently received a clean bill of health from her heart doctor.  She says her therapists showed her what living life is all about and she is so thankful she can now walk to the park with her girls and keep up with her active family.

“RIM gave me a second chance at life and that’s so exciting because I’m now adopting my four foster girls. I can’t wait for us to be a permanent, healthy family.

Cardiac rehab is a medically supervised program that helps improve the health and well-being of people who have heart problems. The outpatient program, offered at RIM, Sinai-Grace and Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital,  includes customized exercise training, education on heart healthy living, and counseling to reduce stress and help you return to an active life.