Most doctors would agree that exercise is an important, if not essential, component of a healthy lifestyle. It can be linked with increased energy, improved sleep and a better mood. However, until recently many doctors have felt that the best thing for patients undergoing treatment for cancer was to slow down and take it easy, assuming that exercise would be too draining.
Emerging studies, including one conducted by exercise physiologist Lee Jones at Memorial Sloan-Kettering and featured in a recent U.S. News & World Report article, show that working out could actually ease the effects of chemotherapy in some patients. In certain cases, there have even been signs of reducing the risk of recurrence as well.
Many side effects of chemo, such as chronic fatigue, trouble focusing (or “chemo brain”) and anxiety, can make working through treatment a difficult task. Research indicates that incorporating exercise into your daily routine could help to decrease these as well as other side effects, resulting in increased energy and focus for your workday.
You can also download a PDF of our Fitness On-the-Go Guide, which includes helpful tips for safe exercises you can do throughout treatment. Just remember to always consult your doctor before beginning any type of exercise program.