mWhen fighting cancer, increasing your activity level with exercise carries many benefits. It helps to promote energy, build stamina, and improve self-confidence and mood. While many cancer centers offer free exercise classes for those who need encouragement and social support, home-based exercise programs can be just as effective in building strength and reducing the fatigue that comes with radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
Exercise is emerging as being extremely beneficial in the fight against all types of cancer. In fact, a study by The National Cancer Institute found patients were actually averaging 12,000 steps a day, while those without cancer were recommended to try for 10,000. These results came from using resistance bands and walking. Participants were asked to work on increasing the number of steps they took per day and perform one set of 15 repetitions with the bands for three days per week. Gradually, participants increased their band exercises to include three or four sets.
What the study showed was that these small initial efforts to exercise by those with prostate or breast cancer gave the participants more strength and stamina to handle their radiation treatments. Those who didn’t exercise showed a marked decrease in their muscle strength. Since increased mobility, better balance, and improved physical functioning is essential to quality of life, even those with aggressive cancers such as mesothelioma or pancreatic cancer need to remain active in order to improve or maintain their current energy levels, strength and wellbeing.
Exercise shouldn’t be seen as a burden. That’s why patients who participated in the study were simply asked to try to improve the number of steps, repetitions or sets they performed per day. That’s extremely doable even for those who have difficulty breathing or who struggle with nausea. You aren’t competing with anyone else other than yourself. The beauty of exercise is that no matter how small you start out, there is always room to improve. If you can only walk two blocks today, try to walk two blocks plus a few more steps tomorrow. If you can only do a single repetition with a resistant band today, then try to do one and a half repetitions tomorrow.
Above all, don’t focus on what you can’t do. The purpose of exercise isn’t to make you feel bad about yourself. The purpose of increasing your activity is to give you the tools and increased sense of wellbeing you need to fight the cancer and improve your chances for survival.
The end of the year is a time when a lot of us tend to take stock on the past year, its ups and downs and how we can resolve to change the things we don’t like and make them better. Somehow on December 31st we decide to put to rest the last chapter in our book for the year -even though the majority of us do this not by resting and taking care, but by celebrating until the very last minute! Go figure!
The point is, is that for many we use the time between Christmas and New Years to reflect on our life’s journey, not only where we have been and are now; but where we will go from here. Without Faith its hard to imagine the possibility of change, without Hope, the courage to stick with it when it’s tough, and without Love, the strength to get us through.
The question I have for you is why wait? Life doesn’t really stop and start over just because the date changes -its an ever changing ongoing process! If you are like many of us – we are all striving to learn and grow and be better people, to nurture ourselves and others….. Why wait until January 1st to do it! Start today, right now! If there is something you want to change, learn, develop, love……..then be like Nike and JUST DO IT!
Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty. ~Frank Herbert
“Be the change that you want to see in the world” Mohandas Gandhi
Do you ever wonder how much time and energy people put into making themselves better? Have you ever perused the self help section of Borders, trying to make yourself smarter or more self confident, or trying to discover what you are truly good at? I know I have! My book shelf is filled with “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, “7 Habits of Highly Effective People“, “Guerrilla Marketing ” and the list goes on. While these have been good tools in teaching me how to be a better sales person or how to market my business better, they didn’t give me the sense of personal achievement or fulfillment I thought that they would. There was still a void in my life I didn’t understand how to fill until now.
Having a greater sense of purpose in my life and knowing what that is, is what has led me to filling that void. I am a personal trainer by trade , and I truly love what I do because even though someone may come to me unhappy with their outward appearance what I usually find is that what they really need help with is some underlying issue on the inside. The best part of my profession is that I get to be the person to help them through it and figure it out. I am a tool for a greater purpose, we all are, its just figuring out what that is. I am blessed to have my profession line up with who I am and what I love to do. Sometimes things don’t line up and we are led to question why it is we are at certain places in our lives, what is our purpose in this situation? Often times as time passes we look back on those moments and the answers are revealed to us in that “aha moment” . Isn’t it funny how the more we try to control things the less power we have? Somehow letting go of things and realizing that we can’t always control everything has a way of putting life back in perspective.
I make it a daily ritual to work out my spirit now just like my work outs at the gym. Actively engaging the people around me and truly caring about them has helped me nourish my spirit and like who I see in the mirror, not because I see a pretty face, but because of the person she is becoming.
Thinking more about how you can help someone else and genuinely caring about the people and relationships in your life is where its at. We all have our own unique talents and gifts, recognizing them and using them to help each other along the way is what its all about.
I would like to begin this piece with a quote from one of my favorite inspirational and influential speakers, Brian Tracy. ” You are what you think about most of the time.” When you think about it – that one statement is pretty powerful, it says that you create who you are by how you think about yourself. Its something I didn’t always see or understand, but when I sit back and reflect on different passages in my life I have come to find it to be very true. You cannot control what others think or do but you do have the power and ability to change others perception of you by how you see your self. If you think you are a worthless, hopeless person with nothing to offer most of the time – you will do and behave as a hopeless worthless person – who life happens to. On the other hand you may be in a bad situation, or spot in your life but instead of choosing to see the situation as hopeless and give up, you think hmm… what can I do to get myself out of this mess, come up with a series of steps and a reasonable time line and keep working towards that goal. Two very different ways of thinking. One is the victim mentality and the other is the Can Do mentality. Sure, not all of our problems in life can be solved right away and we may have to accept the fact that for a certain amount of time a situation is what it is and we have to choose to make the most of it for now, but in time with a plan, we can and do have the power to change that situation, and do not have to accept failure. Only when you stop trying do you truly fail. Think about who you want to be and find someone who has those characteristics, study that person, go ask them questions if you can. Questions like how did you get to be where you are, what things do you do on a daily basis to get you there? By picking up those same habits and actions you can start your own journey to being the person you want to be
“Sometimes there is perfection in the slightest imperfection” Kristen Lee Happy Birthday Kristen!
The end of the year always brings about new resolutions with us all and for many getting physically fit reigns at the top of the list along with laying off the sweets and eating a more well balanced diet. All of the fitness goals I just listed our external and help our physical being, but what about our spiritual fitness? Being spiritually fit is directly linked to being physically fit and is on my own list of resolutions this year in my quest toward total fitness.
As a trainer I work with a diverse group of people who have walked down many different roads to get where they are today but the one thing they all seem to have in common is that their struggle with physical fitness stemmed from something that happened to their spirit. Whatever that something was left them feeling unworthy, unappreciated and in turn unable to give or receive appreciation to themselves or others. I truly want to focus on total fitness this year not just the physical. So instead of making a snap resolution to just do something and give up on it a month later I want us to sit and reflect. Find a quiet place and write yourself a letter that you are going to read a year from now. Visualize and list out what you want to bring into your life this year and make sure to honor your achievements of the year that has just passed. Reflect on who you are and why – often it takes a change on the inside, a new way of thinking to bring about the changes you want to see on the outside. A friend of mine always says, “Beauty is only skin deep but ugly goes all the way to the bone”. Let your inner beauty shine through this year and smile when you see your reflection!
Womens Wellness Through the Ages
By Melissa Brown
Everyone has their moments of weakness when they stray off of their diet -
When this happens you have a couple of choices:
A. Beat yourself up with negative self talk you deserve it right?
B. Just keep eating crap its making you feel better right now, even though it won’t tomarrow.
C. Take a look inside yourself and find out why?
I have done A and B, neither have worked for me long term – So I vote for option C and would recommend it to you too. Identify the underlying problem, understand and learn from it, ask yourself why? – Then vow not to let that thing or way of thinking sabotage you again! It takes practice and hard work and even when you tackle that, something else may come up! But I have found that loving yourself and praising yourself for taking the conscious steps toward your goals of a fitter body and using that as motivation works better for me.