Personal trainer and co-author of “The Breast Cancer Survivor’s Fitness Plan”, Josie Gardner says that chemotherapy treatments are cumulative: the more you have, the more fatigued you will feel. “You have to listen to your body,” said Gardner, encouraging patients to rest if they genuinely feel too tired to exercise. She recommends a combination of aerobics, strength training, balance and stretching specially tailored for cancer patients’ needs. Depending on the needs of the patient, one of these areas may need to be emphasized more than others.
What’s the Big Idea?
In addition to rehabilitating the body in the wake of a medical condition, exercise can help reduce the risk of many diseases, including breast, endometrial and colon cancers, according to the National Cancer Institute. In other words, exercise is preventative medicine. “Being overweight is a risk factor for cancer and maintaining a healthy weight can reduce the risk of cancer developing or recurring.” Leading an active life with regular exercise can help prevent serious health complications before they start.