Exercise and fitness after a cancer diagnosis may seem daunting, but studies show it can make a BIG difference!
Too many people in my life have cancer. Since this is Breast Cancer Awareness month, I thought I would take this opportunity to share some things I have discovered along the way about exercise for cancer in general, to encourage you or those you love to move forward with confidence.
The American Cancer Society recommends that cancer survivors take the following steps:
- Start a regular physical activity program
- Avoid total inactivity after diagnosis
- Aim to exercise at least 150 minutes per week
- Include strength training exercises at least two days per week
Some of my clients have said that on their worst days, in terms of fatigue, doing a little something, whether it be some light stretching, gentle yoga, or walks in the fresh air made them feel better.
Andrea Leonard, B.A., C.S.C.S., C.E.S., P.E.S. Founder and President of the Cancer Exercise Training Institute, says it is imperative that “patients MUST discuss exercise with their doctor and get a complete Medical Clearance Form. Be sure they state any limitations or modifications that will be necessary in their exercise programming.” Andrea says, the “client should be at least six weeks post-op before beginning an exercise program consisting of anything more than range-of-motion, stretching, and breathing exercises.” Depending upon the condition the client was in prior to diagnosis; this will determine a base line moving forward.
Karen Mustian of the University of Rochester Medical Center and colleagues looked through all the studies they could find on the various ways to help cancer patients get their energy back. Exercise was the clear winner as reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s (JAMA) Oncology.
“Cancer patients already take a lot of medications and they all come with risks and side effects. So, any time you can subtract a pharmaceutical from the picture it usually benefits patients.”
For more information about choosing a personal trainer specializing in special conditions such as cancer, arthritis, post joint replacement, Parkinson’s disease, or stroke while remaining strong and more confident, click here to read more about Lori Michiel Fitness Trainers.
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