Arnold Schwarzenegger has opened up about a tough period when he underwent unplanned open heart surgery, emphasizing the urgency of his recovery in a recent video on his YouTube channel, Arnold’s Pump Club.
In early 2018, at 76 years old, the actor and bodybuilder faced a harrowing experience when he was initially scheduled for non-invasive heart surgery.
“I remember when I had my open heart surgery, my third one… I was really freaking out, and I woke up all of the sudden and the doctor was standing in front of me, and saying ‘I’m so sorry, but unlike what we planned, a non-invasive surgery… we made a mistake and poked through the heart wall, and there was internal bleeding, and we had to open you up to save your life.’” Schwarzenegger recalled.
“The bottom line is, you cannot roll the clock back,” he continued. “I was in the middle of a disaster… so now it’s about, ‘how do I get out of it?’ You have to shift gears.”
Getting healthy enough to get discharged from the hospital was the first step in his recovery, Schwarzenegger said.
“[That meant] getting out of bed and start walking. First 10 steps, then longer and longer,” he explained, adding that when he needed extra motivation, “I called my buddies in and said, ‘You guys have to fire me up. You have to count the number of steps that I’m doing.’”