It’s a nasty, nasty day here in Georgia. First few days of spring, and we’ve reverted to some of our coldest weather all winter! I’m holed up in Starbucks getting caught up on my blogging, so I figured this was a fantastic time to get up a guest post!
Melanie Bowen contacted me a while ago to ask writing a guest post about the benefits of exercising with a cancer diagnosis. Since I’ve seen multiple friends and their families battle cancer, I was on board to get the word out about anything that can help someone with their battle.
Melanie writes for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance’s blog and is an advocate for natural and alternative health. You can follow her on Twitter at @MelanieLBowen
Now, that’s enough of my writing. Let’s hear what Melanie has to say!
Making your battle easier: the benefits of exercising through cancer
When people are diagnosed with cancer, it can seem like they have received a
death sentence. A lot of patients tend to begin to monitor their health far more
closely than they did before, and understandably. While there are several steps
that will aid them in doing this, the best thing for them to do is to begin to get plenty
of daily exercise. Daily exercise does not mean that they are training to become a
competitor in the Olympics, but it does mean that they are combining cardio and
strength training exercises into their daily activities. Even if people have received a
mesothelioma diagnosis, physical activity will improve their overall health and allow
them to recover quickly.
One of the most common side effects of any type of cancer treatment is fatigue;
therefore, people have the false assumption that if they spend less energy
throughout the day, they will have more energy to do other things. Although exercise
will consume energy, it will also give them an overall energy boost. As a result, many
cancer patients who exercise have noted that they have more energy when they
exercise as opposed to when they do not.
Unfortunately, many types of cancer have the ability to move to other parts of the
body. However, exercise will strengthen the body’s immune system, and then
the body will have a better chance in preventing the cancer from spreading. Also,
exercise makes the muscles and the bones of the body much stronger; therefore,
the patients will notice more mobility of their joints, and they will be less likely to
experience any broken bones.
Finally, cancer also causes psychological and emotional problems, and one of the
main problems is depression. Exercise will also aid in preventing these problems.
As the patients exercise, they will release endorphins from their bodies, and these
hormones help to prevent any depressive periods from occurring.
Cancer patients should realize that they can maintain the same quality of life that
they experienced before their diagnosis; however, in order to do this they must
continue to get daily exercise.
Have you experienced the benefits of exercise during cancer or another illness? Feel free to share your stories—we’d love to hear them!
Healthy or ill, how do you notice the benefits of exercise in your daily life?