Community Connection: Ovarian Cancer Canada is looking for volunteers! Could you help?

OVdialogue – consider joining our team in the role of Peer Support Volunteer. Over a few hours each week, you would be part of a team that helps connect people, support conversations and are thought leaders for OVdialogue. This is your opportunity to give back to those who have/continue to support you through the tough times, share your unique experiences, and help celebrate successes. For more details of what this entails, please reach out to @Mfallis (

Exercise Routines?

Hola Ladies xo  B)  Was wondering if anyone has a favourite exercise routine/class or style or piece of equipment they use? Also curious if anyone out there has tried a strength training program while being on Avastin? Wondering about if you find your recovery time different? If so, how do u manage it? Do you have a trainer? Does anyone know of a personal trainer in Winnipeg that has experience working with cancer patients or ppl on Avastin? Thanks so much!


  • I joined a yoga group started by a gal who runs "Inspirational Hearts" - a store where cancer patients can find prosthetics, wigs, chemo caps, etc. The class is for beginners and the poses are geared toward helping us get our strength and mobility back.  I have been frustrated at times at how long it does take to get energy back after chemo and how quickly I do tire out. One day at a time and try to do a little more each time I walk or do yoga to challenge myself. Abdomen and back still tend to be my weak spots.
  • I found that yoga was the best for me, could take my own pace and start with the easier poses.
  • Flowergirl
    Yes, yoga or gentle stretching is a good place to start once your DR gives you the ok to proceed with activity. It takes sometime to find what you like and what works - and that seems to change over time also.
  • @AmandaRoseRebs I was really active before surgery...I used to be over 100 lbs heavier and lost the weight 5ish years ago and did so by exercise and eating healthier and in moderation. When I couldn't work out like I used to I was lost but at the same time I wasn't scared to overdo it and hurt myself. Post surgery, I started out by just walking and gradually worked my way up to more vigorous exercise. I also found gentle stretching/yoga helped too. I have to note though that I didn't undergo adjuvant therapy but I had a major blood loss during surgery (mass ruptured) so my energy levels were crap for probably 6 months.
  • *was scared
  • AmandaRoseRebs
    edited September 2017
    Hey me too! I was a Weight Watchers leader and have lost over 100lbs. Thankfully have been able to maintain the loss through out all of this. I've been doing yoga for years and yes has certainly helped with everything since my diagnosis.
    I guess at this point I am wanting to move past the gentle yoga/stretching etc and would like to have more of a strength and muscle building focus. But noticing while on Avastin my body reacts different to exercise-the recovery is wierd, I'm finding my muscles don't recover as quickly and find it more difficult to build new muscle. I haven't been able to find any info on Avastin and strength training- or info on the overall impact the training would have. Have just been doing my own trial and error- but would love to hear from anyone else who may be trying the same thing .
    Thank you for all the great response!
  • I debated joining Weight Watchers - a typical January issue - LOL - I was a member many years ago.  However, as usual, I decided to go it alone. Now my husband has joined my crusade to lose some weight.  We have started to walk more, cut out dessert at dinner, stopped buying bags of chips, and opted for more fruits and vegetables.  He's lost 12 lbs and I've lost 9.  We both have a little more to go, but have started and we are seeing success which gives us the encouragement to continue.  I've now started to attend more than one yoga class each week and am practicing more yoga at home.  Every little bit helps the body and soul.
  • @kastoyles Yes! Sooo good !! :) 
  • I started swimming, mainly to regain some strength and energy.  The first time I went I was able to do six lengths, very slowly.  Then after a couple of months going several times a week I was able to do 20, still slowly.  And now, after 18 months, I can do thirty lengths, not very fast, but I no longer am the slowest person in the pool.  The best part is that I built up a bit of muscle definition in my arms and legs and even my abdomen (just a bit there) without really noticing it.  And nobody at the pool knows I am a cancer survivor. 
  • I had just started a stretch and strength class once a week that included some yoga moves and by the fourth week I blew up with some ascites and had a recurrence.  I am now hesitant about yoga for now.  I admire yoga participants because there are some tough moves in those classes. 
  • I just wanted to comment that my aquafit classes are really useful.  I find the muscle work is strengthening my body and I am combining it with portion control using Weight Watchers to try to lose the 15 lbs I gained while on chemo.  I have lost a few pounds already.  I feel so much stronger than a few months ago.  I recommend aquafit for anyone needing muscle strengthening and who likes the water.  I have also just started Pilates once a week instead of Yoga.  
  • Jeannie
    Good for all you ladies who are trying to keep fit, get stronger and/or lose weight! It’s so important for our health to move as much as we can. I just finished chemo and will be getting back into yoga as soon as I can. :)
  • jsullivan33
    I always found that by week #2 after a chemo I was able to resume my yoga routine. But by the time I completed the entire chemo course, I find myself  too fatigued to resume it - am told this is a cumulative bother and that my strength will return. Anyway, I have been using this cool app called Yoga Studio for a few years, I practice a gentle 30min. class daily when I am well enough. There are several classes in each of the three levels, and they can run for 15, 30, or 60 min.. Very doable from an IPad, especially if energy is in short supply. I can’t wait to get back into classes now that treatment is over. -Judith
  • Flowergirl
    That sounds great - thanks for sharing that!
  • Hi @jsullivan33
    Thanks for sharing the info about the Yoga app.  It sounds like a lot of people might be interested in it.  I encourage you to post this information in the Books and Resources discussion too....
  • Elsie13
    My favourite form of exercise is zumba class.  I do that twice a week. There was a class called 'piloxing' which was good too, but the teacher left Canada for the Caribbean! It was 30 minutes or so of standard aerobics, you might say, but with boxing -like arm movements.  Then muscle toning and stretching for the remainder of the hour. 
  • Hi @Elsie13 I have heard that Zumba is great fun although I have never done it myself!  It is great that you are getting/staying active.  It can make such a difference in so many different ways.  Good for you!
  • @Elsie13 Hope you are doing well and glad to hear you are still 'Zumbaing'. 

    I found chair exercises on UTUBE that were being hosted by a Caribbean host to help me get back some of my strength without being worried of falling.  Now I can pretty well do my usual workout routines, but feel fatigued after.  I find it helps to have a protein snack afterwards, but I noticed that I'm having issues building muscle.  Does anyone else have this issue?
  • Elsie13
    Hello again, @Ingrid_Canon . I recently had a very annoying shoulder problem, calcific tendonitis. So I missed a couple of weeks of zumba and I'm not doing any toning classes for now.  My shoulder is a lot better, but I'm supposed to wear compression pantyhose every day, due to lympedema. But I'm not wearing them, as putting them on, that seems to stress my shoulder. I should be starting physio soon, to work on my shoulder. I'm back at zumba twice a week. 
    Ingrid, I was just looking at your profile - you had an ovarian cyst for 3 years? They thought it was just some benign thing and not to worry? That's kind of scary? How is everything now? 
  • @Elsie13 We decided to 'watch and wait' on the cyst.  I was surprised when they found a tumor, but I have been fairing well since.  Trying to get back to some sort if normal.  Hope your shoulder issues get better soon.
  • jsullivan33
    I have cool product I’d like to share here. It’s a collection of concentrated blends of vegetable and fruit extracts that comes in powder form, called “Joos”. Made in Edmonton by a biologist . I have ben using this for a couple of months now, and recently posted a review:

    “This is a completely natural product that packs the benefits of concentrated vegetable and fruit nutrients and minerals into a flavourful powder for drinks. As a cancer patient, I found Joos perfectly aligned with the evidence and guidelines provided by Drs.  Beliveau and Gingras, “Foods That Fight Cancer”, University of Quebec at Montreal (UQAM), McClelland & Stewart 2006. To quote the authors,  .”...understanding the science behind these therapeutic benefits, we come to realize not only why it is so critical to add these foods to our diet, but how easily it can be done”. With Joos, it is amazingly simple, and there are several choices across the flavour and composition offering.

    The Joos drink can be instantly prepared to taste, and now  replaces the synthetic  industrial products that I need  for thirst, for flavouring the oral CT scan contrast  medium, and for  hydrating during chemotherapy days. “
    Cheers, @jsullivan33

  • @jsullivan33 thank you for the information on the Joos.  What do you recommend to start?  Also do you know if they have a plant-based protein and/or iron product?
  • jsullivan33
    Hi @Ingrid_Canon  Best to check the web site, where all of the blends are shown  I did not see any protein drinks. The producer will answer any inquiries, however, so just drop her a line via the site. I started with two of the blends: “Energize” and “Superfood”. each blend comes with a card that suggests preparations e.g. in smoothie, as a  refreshing drink, etc. cheers, jsullivan33
  • I and 1/2 years out of chemo. I have been happy with gradually increasing my health. I have found swimming and walking, stretching, etc., very helpful. I am 65 so not going to high impact. I recommend dog walking. I have recently started going to a physiotherapist to strengthen muscles.  I think this summer, with the high humidity (Nova Scotia) has been very hard on me. Has anyone else found that humidity is hard on their body?
  • @blair_ns....high humidity has been killer in Ontario too. Too much. Today is supposed to feel like 41C. I will be inside in a/c eevery possible minute I can be.