American Cancer Society

Back from the wilderness – and the journey must continue…

Ola! It has been a while since I have posted last, and as much as I would like to say it’s because I was busy training for a marathon, this is not the case. I’ve been getting stuck into a new job and writing research papers that I’ve worked on over the last few years. I will be going through my papers in the next few weeks to provide not just motivation, but scientific evidence behind why it is safe and beneficial to exercise during/after treatment.

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So I thought I would start with a link to an article I was asked to write for the Oncology Newsletter about my experiences promoting physical activity for women with ovarian cancer who were undergoing chemotherapy. (Click the link below!)

http://oncologynews.com.au/movement-the-key-to-reducing-side-effects-of-chemotherapy/ 

Just as a recap of where I’ve been MIA over the past year or so:

* I have started a job at the Kids Cancer Centre at the Sydney Children’s Hospital, where I run clinical trials for kids with all sorts of cancers. We are also working on a few lifestyle projects to increase activity of kids during and after treatment (as there is early evidence that it helps the kiddies too!)

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(oh, here is the day I got to dress up as Batman for Superheroes day, where the entire hospital staff dressed up!! I think I had just as much fun as the kids!)

* My thesis works were finally published! I was able to get my two main studies published in the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer (which I’ll discuss in subsequent posts), which gave me some sleepless nights, but it is great to get word out there of what the amazing ladies in my studies were able to achieve

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* Always trying myself to get out and keep fit whether its playing soccer or touch football. I try to run for 40-50 minutes from time to time and I even went for a 15km cycle for the first time in 5 years on the weekend! I was slightly uncoordinated but it was still great fun!

Remember to aim for the American College of Sports Medicine’s 150 minutes/week of moderate intensity exercise i.e. getting your heart rate up a bit from a challenging activity

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* Lastly, I have also gotten back into music, which I love playing the drums and it is a great outlet for me. I have joined the Kids Hospital band and we are working towards a range of fundraisers to come up in the next few months, as well as playing for the kids in wards when I’m able to.

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So I really look forward to getting the website and community back up and active. I encourage you to share a personal experience with your exercise journeys and ask any questions that you may have. Please share this with somebody you feel could use the encouragement and as always, keep moving forward, one step at a time!

Your Exercise Physiologist

David

Weekly walking challenge

Welcome everybody today, I hope this blog has been helpful in inspiring and motivating people throughout their journeys to take that step and engage in healthy lifestyles. 

I would firstly like to say that today is an important day for me, I have just submitted my thesis on my previous 2 years of work with the ovarian cancer ladies in Sydney, so I am a very happy camper! But that will not stop me writing!

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So I am feeling good and celebrated with a gym weights session, an indoor soccer match and a yum home-cooked dinner. 

I would like put forward to everyone here, a weekly exercise challenge. Now I must stress here, I cannot give specific targets to individuals without having a good chat with you, but I can provide general recommendations, such as the ones released by the American Cancer Society below:

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Moderate intensity = heart rate/breathing rate increases so having a conversation is challenging

Vigorous intensity = working hard enough that you cannot sustain conversation.

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Lets aim for moderate intensity. 150 minutes we can break up throughout the week, so we are generally looking at 30 minute walks on 5 days per week. But if its been a while since you’ve gone out there, try 10-15 minute sessions first and build up. You can do it.

Now to keep you accountable, keep an activity diary and fill it in daily like the one below:

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Simple. So you can plan and try a match/beat your previous weeks. I did this with the women in my study and once in a nice routine, they could increase their programs and make it more challenging.

Give it a week and see how you go, aim for that 150 for the week. Here’s how mine may look for the week 

Mon – indoor soccer pm (40 min)

Tues – gym weights (40 min)

Wed – run/cycle (30-40 min)

Thurs – gym weights (40 min)

Fri – rest

Sat – rest (or light jog on Bondi Beach)

Sun – Soccer match – 90 mins

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Now I do play a fair amount of sport, but a goal of mine – and a goal of YOURS is to AVOID inactivity. try avoid having too many days in the week with no exercise, even small walks are beneficial to how you may start to feel.

As a reminder, here are some of the possible benefits from partaking in regular exercise from the American Cancer Society:

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Get out there, small walks at a time and build up.

 

Now please get back to me with how you went as it would be great to encourage other survivors with your efforts! (comments or e-mails!)

 

As always, please share this with a loved one, or encourage a friend to walk, or like this page and tell yourself you can do it – because you can!

 

David

Exercise physiologist, blogger, researcher, soccer player

E: d.mizrahi@unsw.edu.au

Twitter: @davemiz_EP