Tag Archives: exercise

Staying Fit for the Fight: How Fitness Can Help Cancer Patients

Guest Writer: Melanie Bowen

Staying Fit for the Fight: How Fitness Can Help Cancer Patients

The importance of fitness is difficult to underestimate. Whether you have a clean bill of health or have recently been diagnosed with mesothelioma, getting regular exercise is an essential part of your life. For anyone who has ever heard those fateful words, “You have cancer.” maintaining a healthy fitness level may be even more vital.

In the past, doctors used to recommend that cancer patients rest and avoid physical exertion, but current research indicates that those who have been diagnosed with cancer can reap many benefits from regular exercise. These advantages may include:

* Weight control

* Improve circulation and blood flow

* Lower risk of heart disease

* Decreased risk of osteoporosis

* Increased independence

* Elevated mood and lower levels of anxiety and depression

* Less nausea

* Less fatigue

* Maintain or improve range of motion

While this list certainly provides sufficient motivation for remaining active following a cancer diagnosis, you may have questions about what fitness level is right for you. Generally, experts recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of continual activity five times a week. Your type of cancer as well as the treatment you are undergoing may affect your physical abilities, however, it is always best to consult your doctor before making any radical changes to your physical activity. Your oncologist and cancer support staff can recommend exercise routines and also connect you with trainers and programs specifically targeted toward cancer patients.

Once you have been declared cancer free, you should continue with a regular fitness program. Several studies have recently indicated that cancer survivors who incorporate regular exercise into their lifestyle have a significantly lower recurrence rate. Other studies indicate that survivors of certain types of cancer who exercise live longer than those who do not.

Whether you first heard your cancer diagnosis today or several years ago, your personal health relies in some degree on your personal fitness. Your oncology staff will do all they can to help you, but only you can make the choice and the effort to exercise regularly.

Melanie Bowen

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P90X2 – Ready, Set…Injury…Stop

Jan-Feb2013-P90X2January and February 2013 – P90X2, Injuries, Snow Days and London

Man, oh man…I started strong in January. I worked out 5 times each week and took 2 days to recover and stretch. The first week was brutal. After all the Christmas goodies I had allowed myself to indulge in…and I mean REALLY indulge in…I was not in my best shape. One P90X2 plyo workout would have me reaching for water and crawling to my bed at night. Week two was better, at least I could do more push-ups this week. Then week 3 felt amazing! I was doing push-ups with medicine balls and I could feel the difference. I felt stronger and more determined to do this right. Week 4 was my week to push beyond my regular amount of reps. I really pushed. If Tony was doing 20 sets, I was too…or in some cases more. Week 5 is the recovery week. Crazy, but I injured my sternum doing a yoga plow during this week. What are the chances??? Out of all weeks!!! I end up causing an injury during this week. I called my chiro, booked a massage therapy appointment and followed my chiro’s suggestion for stretching and healing this crazy injury. I pretty much injured the right side of my sternum. There’s a bit of cartilage that joins your ribs to it. That little sucker was painful. I could not raise my arms to shoulder level without any pain. So…lesson in life…injuries happen…but now it is time to get back to working out. February was a full of snow days, visiting a friend in London and taking time off to heal. Today is the last day of February and Winter has never looked prettier. I’m giving myself until tomorrow. Getting back on that saddle for sure.