LCI yoga class

Your Health, Men's Health, Women's Health | 9 months ago

New Year's Resolutions for Cancer Survivors: Exercise More

Levine Cancer Institute is here to support people dealing with cancer, helping them translate New Year’s resolutions into year-long habits through clubs, classes and programs, often at little or no cost.

Editor's Note: This article is part of a mini-series featuring LCI's Cancer Support Programs. Stay tuned for future postings about additional classes offered to support New Year's resolutions.


Resolution #2: Exercise More

Lynnmarie Longo wasn’t much of an exerciser. But a Stage IV breast cancer diagnosis changed that. “I’m looking for longevity,” she says. “There’s no denying that when you keep your body moving, everything works better. From your gut to your mind, everything works better.”

Lynnmarie began her exercise routine by doing a simple sun salutation each morning, an activity that soon evolved into a regular yoga practice. Then she began a couch-to-5K running program and ran two 5Ks in a few months.

“I feel empowered by working out,” she says. “When I ran my first 5K, I came around that bend to see the final stretch. And then I just took off through that finish line. I couldn’t believe I did it. And if I can do that at stage four, anyone can do it.”

Lynnmarie’s experience is one that Susan Yaguda encourages in her work as an integrative oncology coordinator at Levine Cancer Institute. Yaguda recommends a three-prong approach to exercise. The first is cardiovascular exercise. Walking is a good place to start, and it doesn’t have be done all at once. Three ten-minute walks during a day are just as beneficial as one 30-minute walk, she says. The second element is strength and resistance training, which improves bone health and balance and can help maintain a healthy weight. Simple equipment like resistance bands can make a home routine just as effective for strength training as hitting the gym. The last element of a successful exercise routine is flexibility, which can be achieved through appropriate and safe stretching.

“There is a lot of evidence that a well-structured exercise program can help patients better tolerate treatment, manage fatigue and stress, and even help them maintain a healthier appetite,” says Yaguda. “Being active and establishing a regular exercise regimen provides a big mental boost as well. When you feel that everything is out of your control, you have this thing that you can create that’s under your control. People become empowered to take care of themselves.”

New Year’s Resolution Inspiration

  • Take a 15-minute walk, three times a week. Lynnmarie believes that the regular dose of fresh air and activity will result in such a physical and mental boost that it’ll convince people to expand their exercise beyond this.
  • Schedule an exercise physiological consult with LCI. You’ll get a one-on-one consultation to evaluate your fitness level, answer your questions, and recommend a personalized exercise routine to match your goals and needs. Call the Cancer Resource Center at 980-442-1006 to learn more.
  • Try yoga or tai chi. Programs like these are available through LCI at little or no cost. Begin or build upon your exercise routine – and meet others with similar goals. Call the Cancer Resource Center at 980-442-1006 to learn more about the available classes.

 

Learn more about Levine Cancer Institute's Cancer Support Programs.

Read Below for the Full Collection of Our New Year's Resolutions: 

Resolution #1: Eat a Healthy Diet

Resolution #2: Exercise More

Resolution #3: Restore Well-being

Resolution #4: Stay Vigilant About Health