After Cancer Treatment-Exercise!

After Cancer Treatment-Exercise!

Guest article by Jeannine Jubeck

I have trained over 2000 Men and Women over the past 15 years.  Most are either in recovery or living with medical issues such as Diabetes, rotator cuff surgeries, hip replacements, knee surgeries and yes, Cancer.  So, you may wonder, is it safe to exercise after treatment? As with any exercise program, always check with your physician first. Once they have given you the okay, it makes sense to start an exercise program with a qualified trainer who has experience working with Cancer patients.  

So, what are the benefits? According to the Mayo Clinic, these are just a few:

  • Increased strength and endurance
  • Fewer signs and symptoms of depression
  • Less anxiety
  • Reduced fatigue
  • Improved mood
  • Higher self esteem
  • Less pain
  • Improved Sleep
  • Lower risk of the cancer returning

The important thing is to start small.  Listen to your body, do what you can without exhausting yourself.  Start with walking. Walk 10 minutes your first few days, then try 15 over the next few days and work up to 30 minutes.  What is important is that you get proper rest and give yourself time to recover.

Secondly, I would begin a strength training program.  Hire a Personal Trainer to ensure you are doing exercises correctly and safely.  Start lifting just two days per week. Lifting will help your body get stronger, increase energy and make your joints more flexible.  Which brings me to my next point…flexibility.

Flexibility should be part of any strength training program.  It’s great to get stronger, but we all need to maintain or develop some flexibility.  A good trainer will evaluate where you have tight muscles and joints and prescribe appropriate stretches to address them.

And finally, all programs should incorporate balance training.  A few balance exercises in every program can help prevent falls and additional hospital visits.  

So, remember, start slow, get a physician’s clearance to exercise, hire a good trainer and consistently work your program.  It works if you do it!

Jeannine Jubeck is the owner and trainer of Fit To The Core In Home and Online Training based in West Chester, Pa.  She is NSCA Certified how with 15 years of personal training specifically for Men and Women 55 and up.