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Fitness Following Treatment


Make Movement a Priority

When I was diagnosed with cancer, I was also 32 weeks pregnant. I wasn’t exactly working out a lot during the pregnancy so after the diagnosis, going through treatment and raising a newborn and a 16 month old toddler, well, I was holding on for dear life, not worrying about my workouts.  Although incorporating fitness should have been a priority, it just wasn't.

After chemo, I started to feel better and knew that incorporating 30 minutes of exercise, several times a week, decreases the chances of re occurrence. Working out became more important to me.  After being away from the gym for so long I was SO intimidated to start again. Thankfully, I have an amazing gym in my town and found a trainer who helped me build a plan. She had worked with Breast Cancer patients before and knew how to help me build up my cardio and gain strength to recover, all so that I could feel better about myself.

Alanna, my trainer, is amazing!  She is full of energy, has a positive spirit and really helped me feel good about myself.  Sometimes, during certain periods of our lives, we need someone to be our cheerleader. Alanna has been one of mine! Alanna has put together a great workout plan for us to share with you! It's awesome for those getting back into working out, or maybe starting out for the first time. You can add some weight to your squats for the more experienced. It's a really attainable and versatile workout! Check out all the details below...  *And remember always to check with your doctor before beginning a new workout plan.

Some info about Alanna before we get started: Alanna Littlefield holds a Bachelors Degree from University of Maine Orono in Athletic Training with a minor in Human Nutrition. She's a Board Certified and Licensed Athletic Trainer, member of the National Athletic Training Association and a Fitness Director and Personal Trainer at Quest Fitness.

Body Weight Squat:

  • Feet shoulder width apart
  • Hips and butt back
  • “brace” your core by bringing your belly button to your spine and rolling your shoulders back
  • Pretend your sitting down in a chair
  • When you hit 90 degrees, start to stand back up to starting position and repeat

*TIP: do not let your knees go over your toes

High Plank:

  • Starting on all 4s
  • Bring your hands directly below your shoulders
  • Extend your legs behind you and come up to your toes  
  • Back and hips should make a straight line (pretend there is a glass on your back you can’t drop it)!

Modified Push ups:

  • Starting on all 4s in a high plank position then drop down to your knees
  • Place hands a little wider than shoulder width
  • Back flat and belly button to the spine
  • Lower yourself down allowing your elbows to bend
  • Slow and controlled down and then back up

*TIP: modified push ups can also be done on a wall or counter

Tricep Dips: Find a bench, stairs or chair

  • Place your hands next to you on the bench, chair or stair
  • Straighten your arms keeping a slight bend
  • Slide your butt off the bench with your legs extended out in front of you with a slight bend in your knee
  • Slowly bend your elbows to lower your body toward the floor until your elbows reach a 90 degree angle
  • Push back up to starting postion and repeat

Bridges:

  • On your back
  • Bend your knees with feet flat on the floor, hip width apart
  • Bring your belly button to spine and back against the floor (with a pelvic tilt)
  • Squeeze your butt and drive your hips to ceiling
  • Slowly lower back down to starting position and repeat  

Split Squats:

  • Stand with your feet hip width apart
  • Step one foot back behind you
  • Drop the back knee while keeping your chest up and belly button to spine
  • Once you it 90 degrees extend back up squeezing your butt at the same time
  • Do not let your front knee go over your toe
  • Switch legs  once you have done one set on the starting leg