Their Hearts Into Running The Peachtree: Emory Heart Center Doctors
Run For Fun - and Heart Health
Road Race attracts thousands of participants each year - including several
Emory Heart Center cardiologists who believe in practicing what they
preach to patients about living a healthy and active lifestyle.
"I've run the Peachtree every
year since 1993. It's a wonderful 4th of July tradition in Atlanta and
it's terrific to see so many people having fun and enjoying physical
activity," says Emory Heart Center cardiologist Laurence Sperling, M.D.,
Director of Emory's HeartWise Risk Reduction Program. Dr. Sperling is
an avid runner who ran a half marathon last Thanksgiving.
Cardiologist Wayne Alexander,
M.D., PH.D., R. Bruce Logue professor and Chair of Emory University
Medical School's Department of Medicine, has been participating in the
Peachtree Road Race for the past decade. "I run regularly and the Peachtree
is a great added stimulus to train seriously in order to get in shape
for the race," Dr. Alexander comments. "Plus it is an opportunity to
set an example for our patients. It's important that cardiologists don't
just talk about being physically active but that we actually incorporate
exercise into our lives -- because it is the right, heart healthy thing
Emory cardiologist Steven
Manoukian, M.D. has been running the Peachtree since l990. He also runs
in several 5 and 10K races annually, works out at the gym and plays
ice hockey. "Those of us who work with heart patients should not only
give them good advice but also take it ourselves," Dr. Manoukian says.
"Part of the reason I run is to show I'm not just preaching about exercise
to patients - I'm following my own advice."
Douglas Morris, M.D., Director
of the Emory Heart Center, has run the Peachtree Road Race for the past
ten years. "The three factors which are the major contributors to heart
disease in the U.S. are cigarette smoking, obesity and a sedentary lifestyle.
We want to get the word out that by becoming physically active and not
smoking, people can dramatically reduce their risk of heart disease,"
Dr. Morris says. "The good physician should first take care of him/herself
and one of the cornerstones for good health is to remain physically
active. Physicians should pursue physical fitness not merely to serve
as a role model for patients - but for their own good and their own
health. I'm delighted that so many Emory Heart doctors practice what
In all, more than 800 Emory
Healthcare employees are running in the Peachtree Road Race. That figure
represents a 20 percent increase over last year's Emory participation.
The Emory runners work in all components of Emory HealthCare, including
Emory University Hospital, Emory Crawford Long Hospital, The Emory Clinic,
Emory Children's Center, Wesley Woods Hospital, Emory-Adventist Hospital
and EHCA, LLC.
For more than a decade, Emory
Healthcare has been a sponsor of the Peachtree Road Race. Emory physicians,
nurses and other staff volunteers will help provide free emergency health
services to race participants.