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We've talked about the benefits of exercise before. However, this time even more research supports the idea that people with a cancer diagnosis should be active throughout all stages of survivorship.
The idea has gone as far as encouraging doctors to prescribe exercise as a strategy to improve quality of life and long term outcomes for cancer survivors.
The research is strong showing positive benefits for cancer survivors, including:
Adding exercise and movement to your day doesn't need to be complicated. Start slow and be creative. Even small changes in your daily routine can make a difference. Getting started can be the hardest part, so here are a few ideas:
Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.
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These suggestions are all so sensible and practicable. I have used most of them for the last 13 years that I have survived two surgeries and two chemotherapy 6-month, 12 sessions for colon cancer. They have kept me in continuing fullness of good health and energy in addition to the regular follow-up visits with my oncologist.
What I have not only used fully is the pedometer. I had one but it did not work out well for me.
It seems that every day there seems to be a good reason to exercise.
I have never been a jogger or active in sports but I love to get out first thing and cruise the stores and walk the dog.
I've never been overweight, eat Medditerania and love the outdoors. I have been battling prostate cancer for ten years and am now 90 and still like to " go out amongst them ". After a big breakfast.
I just completed 5years post-chemo for ovarian cancer. Walked my dog 2X day during chemo, with only a few exceptions when I was just too weak from treatment and related anemia, or the weather was too bad. Also walked stairs as often as possible...just took my time. After chemo, kept increasing the length of dog walks and then also re-started playing tennis ...hitting the ball for less than 10 minutes at first but was able to play doubles 7 months after the end of chemo. It took another 5 months to play tennis somewhat close to my pre-cancer level.
I am convinced that this effort, and it WAS effort, along with attention to nutrition had a very positive impact on not having, thus far, a re-currence. It also made me feel like maybe things could be normal again and that I might have a bit of control over my destiny. Find something you truly enjoy doing and just do whatever you can ....then try to do a little more each day. Best of luck.
My cancer caused a brain tumor that has destroyed my balance, even though the tumor was removed. I can't walk on my own and any activity causes dizziness and vomiting. I really want to move as much as possible. There is a TV exercise show that is done while seated. Does this really do anything to improve fitness?
I'm an ovarian cancer survivor two years past chemo. I have been a walker for years and was encouraged to continue my routine during and after chemo by both my gyn/oncs. At first I could only walk to the end of my block. But I kept walking as much as my body would allow and now I can walk over four miles without being fatigued. I have neuropathy and my balance has greatly improved. I know that exercise has made all the difference. I read from comments that some people can barely walk up stairs. I would encourage them to keep doing that exercise until they can do more.
I have Arthritis in both big toes... Walking is very painful. I have tried Elliptical s and Tread mills and walking. Some days the pain is manageable. The VA has given me shoes with all kinds of inserts and stuff. these re all helpful but not always successful..
I keep hearing about people exercising during treatment. While I'm sure that exercise would be beneficial, I am so exhausted by chemo that I cannot begin. Most days simply walking up a flight of stairs wears me out. Might anyone have some advice?
Just returned from walking all four Disney Theme Parks at Disney World, Florida, in four days with my grandson's and their parents. I have metastatic breast cancer w mets to the lung,bone, and abdomen. It's been 8 1/2 years since the cancer returned. I pop in an exercise DVD 4-5 times a week, aerobic exercise with stretching and toning. It's a great way to work on the weight issue and get the "good body cells" fully oxygenated. Without a doubt I could not have enjoyed the sparkle in my grandsons' eyes as we walked and rode the rides without a commitment to staying strong w a regular exercise routine.
Hi, I'm seven months after chemo for ovarian cancer on warfarin and gained thirty pounds. Chemo left me with neuropathy. I can barely walk sometimes. I am determined to lose the weight so i just started using my treadmill five minutes a day along with diet changes. I feel good and can see the benefits from the little I am doing. On a mission:-)
One needs to be unorthodox in one's conception of 'exercises'.Very recently,my mom taught my father some yogic exercises called 'Mudras',which are done sitting in one place-with no strnuous physical movement.She suspects that the recent improvements in his blood reports is linked to these.Even I started doing these 'mudras' today for healing sleeplessness.
I believe exercise has been one of the best medicines for fighting my metastatic breast cancer.
Having already been a fitness enthusiast, when I was diagnosed with breast cancer 10 years ago. So, two months before having mascectomy and tram reconstruction, I amped it up to get my obliques as strong as possible. I had an amazingly easy recovery.
Two years later, 8 years ago, I was diagnosed with bone mets. It attacked my right humerous, and I have since had 5 open arm/shoulder surgeries. This has left my arm with quite limited use. Exercising techniques have now changed and as the years have passed, my routine has been more challenging. The intensity I exercise at and my abilities has changed but I would not give it up.
I continue to exercise as much as possible.
i am fortunate to have a treadmill, stair climber, Pilates reformer and weight system set up in our home and I make it my happy place with twinkle lights along the ceiling. I sometimes take my kindle on the treadmill and before I know it I've walked 5 miles!
It makes me feel in control, which makes my mind and body feel 'normal'.
It is about time the medical world starts to recognize the be fits of exercise and fitness for cancer patients. Especially with breast cancer patients who often gain weight during treatment. It doesn't come off easily afterward, as often the thyroid is compromised.
Nutrition counseling and fitness training should be a standard prescription.
I have stage 4 breast cancer, my pelvic area, all the long bones and ribs, sternum and my scull bone infiltrated. I walk for exercise, and believe me it works wonders. I am not allowed to bend nor lift heavy things.
Some facilities have chemo/radiation and
exercise equipment under the same roof. Point being,
it would be so beneficial if sometimes before
taking a chemo session; a patient might spend
a few minutes on a treamdill right before
their treatment to get the "kinks out" and
relax a little.
I have just passed the 5 year anniversary of completion of 8 months of chemo for metastasized breast cancer to the stomach lining(inoperable). During treatment, I walked daily for 45 minutes with the exception of only 5 occasions. Sometimes I felt I could not make it back to my house especially in the first few days when I would feel 30 years older than I am! I feel that the exercise helped my mind and body to keep going during the treatments. Once finished treatment, I have kept up an hour of exercise a minimum of 3X per week in addition to doing yardwork. I am convinced that this has made my body stronger and more able to cope in continuing to fight the cancer. I always feel better after a session.I would strongly encourage keeping up an exercise regimen if one feels up to it.
Both my radiation oncologist and medical oncologist and GP suggested that exercise would help after surgery and radiation for melanoma/lymphedema. It worked, keeping the swelling down and controlling the nerve pain. I would recommend this advice to everyone who has cancer followed by treatment.
I have always exercised. Usually a two to three time a week aerobics class that includes cardio, weights, bands, stability balls anda little yoga. I have recently started adding some yoga classes since I have read that that may prevent pain. For the past 3 1/2 years I have had metastatic breast cancer to bones and lungs. I am pain free for the most part and attribute that to Aredia and to all the exercising I do. The oncologist supports this. I am 81 years old.
Exercise was not prescribed for me, however, since I am a retired PT, I know how important exercise is for healing of any kind. After my 2 lung cancer surgeries and chemo, I started a slow conditioning program consisting of walking and gentle stretching. Now on the eve of 5 years since my initial diagnosis, I just completed a hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon (and back up!) It took determination to regain my strength and endurance, and my love is hiking, but any exercise program definitely makes you feel better, mentally and physically.
I find that oncologists have little advice to offer as far as encouragement to exercise or eating properly. Whatever I have done was on my own instincts and from reading and studying what others experienced.
I was asked by my Dr to try to exercise. For me that is a four letter word,but I have started to exercise. I am wondering what I should be eating since I do not seem to be losing any weight and I was told I needed to lose 30 lbs. I am on Tamoxifen and warfarin.
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