Moving Well


Most cancer patients are already drained from chemotherapy and other ongoing treatments that there is barely any energy left to do much else. This is definitely not the recommended method to go about managing your lifestyle while battling cancer. Daily physical activities will help boost your mental and physical well-being as well as shore up your immunity. Regular exercise and Yoga are known to help release endorphins which boost your mood and keep you feeling positive, both of which are essential when facing a cancer battle. A sedentary lifestyle would lead to muscle weakness and loss of body functions, therefore it is absolutely necessary to remain physical and mentally active during cancer treatments.

14 Oct 2019
Benefits of regular exercise for cancer patients -
1. Improves your physical abilities and mental strength.
2. Helps improve balance and lowers the risk of falling by building muscle strength.
3. Exercise lowers the risk of heart diseases, high blood pressure and diabetes.
4. Reduces the side effects that arise due to the cancer treatment.
5. Improves blood circulation and ensures proper blood flow to all parts of the body.
6. Makes you independent and active in conducting daily routines.
7. Reduces fatigue and lethargy.
8. Helps control your weight.
9. Improves quality of life.
10. Improves mental well-being and boosts your confidence while lowering the risk of going into depression.

Tips to include exercise in your daily schedule:

1. Know What Your Body Needs
The recommended list physical activities varies across individuals. With cancer and its ongoing treatment, you need to be very careful with the amount of physical activities that you select. For adults, 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activities or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity per week is recommended. Full-body strength training or resistance training is also recommended as it stimulates new muscle growth.

2. Choose From a Variety
An effective exercise regime involves a variety of exercises to get the most for your whole body. Include aerobic training exercises like walking and running as well as resistance training exercises like resistant bands and weights to improve strength and muscle power. Aerobic exercises could also be infused with daily routines such as laundry, bathing, dressing and cooking. Resistant exercises include movements like standing up from a chair, carrying your own bag and climbing flights of stairs. All of these activities require muscle strength which can be improved with the help of resistance training. It also helps improve bone density and reduces fatigue. Another recommended option is core training exercise, which is the basis of mobility. The muscles in your core are used in every movement that your body makes, even when lying on the bed. Hence it is necessary to strengthen your core to be able to move about freely.

3. Train For Daily Activities
Try to remain fit for all the activities that you need to do during your daily routine. Think about the movements you will need to perform to fulfil your routine, for instance, doing laundry. Have two piles of clothes flanking an empty laundry basket, and alternate between picking up articles of clothing from either side before throwing them into the empty basket. Repeat this process on a daily basis to activate your muscles and gradually increase the load as you become more comfortable with it. Plan similar exercises for as much house chores as possible.

4. Rehydrate and Refuel
Hydrating and nutrition are key to recovery after exercise and resistance training. Exercise helps improve your quality of sleep, aids in recovery and improves your body’s immune system. If you do not allow your body to rest or give it proper nutrition, you will find it difficult to stick to any regimented exercise programme.

5. Find Yourself a Partner
To ensure consistency in your exercise regime, it is recommended to involve someone close to you in your exercise plan. This will help empower you when your hopes are down. Get into the habit of sharing goals and ideas with each other to keep the physical activity relationship exciting.

Medical professionals the world over recommend that all cancer patient stays fit through physical activities even during demanding treatment schedules. If the regular activities do not appeal to you, perhaps try your hand atZumbaandGentle Flow Yoga, as they may help you cope with the common side effects of chemotherapy which are fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, anemia, depression and anxiety. Before you commit to a work out plan, it would be best to consult your physician on the best activities to yield the best results for you.