Exercise during cancer treatment? Can I? Should I? Maybe this is a question you have asked yourself. Patients have a variety of thoughts about exercising during treatment, which can be influenced by your activity level prior to diagnosis. Some people are accustomed to having a regular, even vigorous workout habit prior to diagnosis. Some individuals have little to no activity. You may feel like exercise is a part of your life you want to continue at your current level. You may feel inspired to add a health benefit to your lifestyle. Or be anywhere on the continuum of activity.
First, let's talk about why you should consider some kind of movement during treatment. Research supports that exercise is most often safe during active treatment, as well as beneficial for a variety of reasons.
If you are a person who has an active lifestyle already, just be sure to go slow and to be gentle with yourself and expectations. If you are a person who is wanting to increase activity, start slow. Whichever camp you come from, give yourself credit for what you are doing! Don't belittle your efforts. Cheer and encourage yourself just as you would a friend. The movement you choose to do should feel energizing. Not too much that you are completely depleted, and not so little that you can hardly tell you've done anything. As always, it is good to check with your doctor to see what is recommended and safe for you.
You may be interested in new fitness guidelines released by the Department of Health and Human Services. The encouraging takeaway from the new guidelines is that it all adds up. All your activity, even short increments, are beneficial and count! The recommendations are for an average healthy, person and may need to be adjusted for a person receiving treatment. As always, it is good to check with your doctor to see what is recommended and safe for you.
We'd love to hear what you find to be energizing movement - even the small doses!
Liked by Lisa Lucier