Published: Aug. 22, 2011
Updated: Aug. 22, 2011
It is important to start an exercise program slowly and increase activity over time, working with your doctor or a specialist (such as a physical therapist) if needed.
If you need to stay in bed during your recovery, even small activities -- like moving your arms or legs around -- can help you stay flexible, relieve muscle tension, and help you feel better.
Some survivors may need to take special care in exercising. Talk with your doctor before you begin any exercise program.
Approximately 70 to 90 percent of patients undergoing treatment for cancer experience fatigue. Patients are often advised to rest, which can lead to more fatigue.
Signs of cancer-related fatigue include feeling tired (even after sleeping), lack of energy to perform regular activities, and lack of interest in normal day-to-day activities.
Be sure to rest, but not too much. Stay active with moderate exercise. It may be helpful to set up a daily routine for activities and exercise.
Eat well. Good nutrition is important for energy and health, but be sure to consult your doctor if you are on food restrictions. Saving energy is important -- some people find it useful to ask for help or support with certain tasks.
Check with your doctor before beginning an exercise program. Some treatments can affect lungs or heart. Do not exercise if your blood counts or mineral counts are low.
Check with your doctor regarding your current medications, as well as existing health conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.
Do not exercise if you have:
Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the above symptoms.
Do as many daily activities as are tolerated. Here are some examples of everyday activities that will help you stay active: