On multiple occasions, I have shared with
you the importance of exercise, not only before but during and after the treatment for breast
cancer. And so I am often asked by my patients, “Gee Dr. Harness, do you have any suggestions
about how I go about exercise and what’s the proper approach? I don’t want to hurt
myself in the process.” Well clearly, depending on what stage you
are at in the treatment of your breast cancer, you need to be working with your breast cancer
specialist, perhaps with people in the physical medicine department at the hospital that you
are working with, etc. So you do need guidance locally. But I want
to offer a link here at BreastCancerAnswers.com of a program that I have had the opportunity
to review from a very credible source that I’d like to recommend and will provide the
link to this doctor’s site that gives you a really lovely overview of how to approach
exercise, how to sustain exercise, and how much exercise you should be doing.
I am pleased to provide a link to Dr. Moshe Frenkel. He is an MD. He is a board-certified
family physician who actually founded the first integrative medicine clinic at the MD
Anderson Hospital in Houston, Texas. He has recently returned, as I understand, back to
Israel but he has granted BreastCancerAnswers.com permission to link to his overview.
Now, I have got the overview here and I don’t want to go through it in great detail but
I just want to sort of highlight it a little bit. Number one recommendation is that you
choose something that you enjoy. How about dancing? How about walking? How about getting
outdoors? What is it that you like? The pure movement and doing it on a sustained basis
is what’s really important. Next step is to start slow, particularly if
you are recovering from your surgery or just getting over your chemotherapy, or you are
just getting over your radiation therapy, you want to start slow. The hard part is keeping
it going. One of the things in talking to exercise coaches
through the years, I think an important factor here is to work with somebody. Create a body
of power, somebody like this to work with you and help you and keep you going because
hey, let’s face it, we all want to stop at times, no matter how committed we are to
exercise, but the bottom line is start slow. Break it up and do fun things, but remember
you are not going to do this on a sustained basis. Think of your activities and monitor
them in some way. Probably a good analogy here is like climbing a mountain. You are
not going to climb into the top of the mountain in one day. You are going to lay out steps
along the way. Also, figure out ways how to reward yourself
as you are making progress along a sustainable life-changing health exercise program for
you. And also, don’t beat yourself up if you miss a couple of sessions for whatever
the reasons. And then, of course, the bottom line out of
this is ‘Gee, how long should I exercise for?’ So on this wonderful outline, the
link that we have given you, Dr. Frenkel has got guidelines about, as an example, walking.
Try and find that average pace of about 3 point miles per hour and during an average
week, try and get in 150 minutes. And then going down jogging and swimming and dancing.
He goes through all of these different kinds of fun exercises and gives you some guidelines.
So, here I think is a good link to something. I have reviewed it. It’s coming from a very
credible source. As one of the famous companies says – ‘Just do it’.