Diet and Exercise, Oh My!

Author: Shannon Miller

I’m nothing if not a planner and it occurred to me today that while I’m only a day into chemo I’m already having trouble keeping track of medication times (for nausea medication, multivitamin, calcium, iron, etc ), water intake and food. Am I eating enough? Getting enough protein?

What about exercise? If I don’t plan it, and have a back up for times I’m not feeling well, then I will most likely get 3 months down the road never having “found the time”.

I talk to women every day about what a wonderful tool a food journal and exercise log is to jump-start or maintain a healthy lifestyle.

I’ve fallen out of practice with my journal over the past few of months. Before, during and after surgery I was asked to stick with walking as my primary form of exercise. Prior to surgery they wanted to make sure the tumor didn’t rupture or twist. And as of this Thursday, I’ll be fully recovered from surgery but also hitting the first tough days of chemo.

While on my way to treatment this morning I realized I need to start writing all of this down. So I’m breaking out my journal and adding a space in the notes section to keep track of medications. My nutrition goal is 6 small meals per day, high in protein. 64 ounces of water (ugh). My exercise goal to start is 30 minutes 5-6 days per week (walking, yoga, elliptical) plus stretching and toning exercises to keep my muscles from too much atrophy.

Of course, being new to all of this and only two days in, it will be interesting to see how my diet and exercise regimen holds up. I know that I need to be flexible with how I feel and get plenty of rest when my body demands it. At the same time, I have had so many survivors offer wonderful advice and tell me how important it is to maintain as normal of a routine as possible.

One friend of mine, who had been through his own battle, gave me this advice “When you have a bad day, it’s just like falling off the balance beam. You get up and keep going. Just get up!”

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