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Hitting the gym with Gen. Russel Honore

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BATON ROUGE - When Gen. Russel Honore went into the hospital in June 2012, seven years after leading the federal disaster response to Hurricane Katrina, he thought he was experiencing a case of heartburn.

Then his doctors told him one of his main arteries was blocked. He was actually suffering a heart attack.

"That was shock, the ultimate shock and awe for me," Honore told News 2.

It's a shock someone in the U. S. feels every 30 seconds. In many cases heart attacks come without warning, and without symptoms.

Surgeons inserted a stent into Gen. Honore's heart to reopen the artery and get blood flowing again. Now the general is on a new mission: he calls it the "stay alive mission."

"I figured it was a wake-up call," he said. "Now I'm going to do the best I can to stay healthy."

That means changing his diet, more exercise, and giving up a favorite indulgence: cigars. He's dropped 40 pounds so far, and has a goal to get back to his "fighting" weight. He says he's also using a phrase he coined after Katrina to keep me and others on the right path to heart health.

"It applies to me," he said. "Don't be stuck on stupid, take care of yourself."



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