I have joined the "Well, then" community. "Well, then" is an online community dedicated to improving health and wellness. Members share ideas of how we can all lead healthier lives.
The site (www.wellthen.org) was started by Harvard Pilgrim. I have been empowered by Harvard Pilgrim (and have been compensated) to share my thoughts on keeping fit and strong.
Yes, I have been compensated, but I am always happy to share ideas about fitness for cancer survivors. I believe so strongly in the benefits of exercise that I welcome another opportunity to reach more people. My hope is that I might be able to encourage someone else to take control of their fitness, and to feel as good as possible for as long as possible.
Here's my first post for Well, then on Getting Started:
We hear more and more about how we should be active and keep moving throughout cancer treatments. Exercise may help us feel better and reduce fatigue, boost our immune system, and reduce our risk of recurrence for some cancers. However, in the middle of chemotherapy or radiation, a daily workout can seem like a daunting task.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the American Heart Association, and the American College of Sports Medicine, adults should get 2.5 hours of moderate exercise per week. That?s 30 minutes most days. But if you?ve been inactive or have become inactive due to surgery, cancer treatments, or injury that can seem impossible. What?s often overlooked in the recommendations is that it is effective to break the exercise up into shorter segments: three 10-minute sessions, for instance. Sometimes though, like when we?re recovering from surgery or are weakened by treatments, even 10 minutes can be tough. Walking across the room or even getting out of a chair may be a challenge. That?s fine. It?s just a starting point. Do what you can today and begin building your strength slowly. Getting some exercise, even just a little, is always a better choice than none. First, before you start an exercise program, it?s always a good idea to check with your doctor. Make sure that there?s nothing about your condition that should limit your activities. To begin, you want to start at a very moderate pace for you. You should be able to comfortably talk as you exercise; you should not be out of breath. If you can recite all the lyrics to your favorite song, you can probably pick up the pace. But if you?re gasping for breath, slow down. As you start feeling stronger, you can increase your workout a little. You can increase the intensity of your workout (how fast you are going or how much weight you are using), the duration of your workout (how long you are exercising), or the number of days you exercise. But don?t increase them all at the same time! Only increase one element at a time.
Remember, even if you can?t do a lot, getting some exercise is better than getting none!
You can visit me at Wellthen.org
if you want to see any of my other tips or check out other people's wellness ideas.
- BY Julie Goodale | 10.15.2010
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